With every intent to minimize my posted ramblings, I unwittingly do just the opposite on a weekly basis with hyperbole and heavy-handed words. Fortunately, due to a lack of both time and literary creativity, I assure you that this iteration will be wildly different.
I have finally re-immersed myself back into the Google-verse of Sketchup! I spent a beautiful Saturday afternoon in my fortress of pseudo-solitude, Netflix on the peripheral running early-century sci-fi and classic Broken Lizard comedies, with a driving focus to design my new workshop. I hope to have a preliminary set of drawings in the next couple weeks that I can present to the District for my application to the Board of Variance…so I will, at last, be able to explain to them why I shouldn’t be required to conform to their “laws.”
However, as the dinner hour approached, it began to feel like I was pushing the societally-accepted limits of the lazy PJ-wearing Saturday. So I took a break from blueprinting to reaquaint myself with a failed toy experiment from last week. Keep in mind that it is purely coincidence that this toy happens to fall upon the now-defunct weekly toy schedule…rest assured that the focus of this month will be buckling down with the garage design.
Did you think I forgot? My 30-day pseudo-commitment to a better toymaking Mike? Possibly. :)
Unfortunately, with everything going on this past week, I kinda lost track of time and got a really late start on this week’s toy. Regrettably, for the same reason, I think I’m going to take a break from toymaking.
With a population of only 9000 residents, the small Russian village of Bogorodskoye is still famously known for its hand-carved wooden toys that bear the village’s namesake: the Bogorod toy, a craft that has been generationally passed down over the last 500 years.
I’ve always found automata strangely fascinating. Yes, it’s a fairly broad topic that can describe any self-operating machine, but I’m primarily talking about the wooden ones. The kind of engineering delights that use cams and gears, cranks and crank shafts, levers and linkages! It could be as simple as a wind-powered rooftop whirligigs — yup, that’s it’s actual name — that animates a lumberjack chopping wood. Or on the opposite end of complexity spectrum of automata, amazing kinetic sculptures that artists like Reuben Margolin or Theo Jansen design!
It is entirely possible (and likely) you are as surprised as I am that it’s week 2 and I haven’t yet abandoned this endeavour. But here I am: another week, another toy.
This is the first of the aforementioned “weekly prototype” initiative…the Climbing Ape. It is a variation I saw on the Internets, based on the traditional folk toy, the double-corded climber.
That’s a funny looking ape! Hey, this is wood class, not art class. So my ability to cut an ape in wood was largely debilitated by my inability to draw an ape on paper. My first sketch was loosely based on King Louie from the Jungle Book…but I suppose if you squish your eyes around, you could see some semblance of Donkey Kong with a hint of Homer Simpson.
I am apathy surrounded by ambition and self-improvement.
The “30 Day Challenge”…the latest craze on the Internets promoted by the bloggisphere and Facebook and Twitter and whatever social networking tool you fancy, driven by a fleet of users seeking new experiences and new beginnings.
The premise is that you commit to trying something new every day for 30 days and tell the world about it…like having the traditional New Years resolution, but failing at the end of the first day, then repeating for the next 30 days. This seems like a lot of work.