Steel Wolves

On the eve of my departure to the great state of Michigan for cold weather and tons of food, it seemed like everyone wanted to get things done as efficiently as I did. Our morning started a bit slowly for some of us (why does “meet at 9:00” seem to mean “just wake up at some point and get there when you can”), but a nice cup of cereal and a pumpkin muffin at the shop helped me prepare for what became an incredibly fast-paced, highly productive day.

It was a day of steel, hundreds of tiny pieces of which now call my hands and arms home. A previous blog spoke about how we are all becoming a family, but I like to think of us more like a pack of wolves, primitively roaming around, biting and picking at our wounds, rolling in the dirt to get clean, eating any scraps we can find along the way, and swatting at the clouds of sand gnats that follow us incessantly, parasitically feeding off our grime-ridden flesh. The answer to the question: “Are you in Studio U or Studio V?” can now be answered simply by presenting our permanently filthy, 120 grit sand paper hands.

Despite our animal-like characteristics and seemingly lack of interest in personal hygiene, we somehow manage to come together and create things that seem to make sense (at least to us). Today we were 10 parts of a metal monster. We had teams to keep the steel moving right along the line to our finished product.

  1. Cut to length, label
  2. Twist, mark tabs
  3. Cut tabs
  4. Remove tabs
  5. Grind edges
  6. Drill holes
  7. Organize

We took one set out to the site and were convinced that our methods were working, so we cranked out all 156 hand-bent steel louvers and 14 bench supports before the neighboring pack of wolves encroached on our territory and we were forced to leave our home base and prepare for an all-out battle.

The battle is tomorrow, and it will be making sure that all of the pieces we just cut actually fit where they are supposed to go. These are the types of battles we normally lose, but we have been preparing for this, and I smell victory … and turkey.

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