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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Jiffy's Still Alive and Household Experts

I walked into class a few days ago to find All-American and Jiffy sitting at the computer looking at pictures and what I saw was quite disturbing. It was a picture of a teenage boy on a motorcycle riding down a residential street, one hand on the handlebar and the other holding a gas-powered chainsaw. And the chainsaw was running. Seriously. The more I get to know Jiffy, the more I'm surprised he's still alive. It wasn't him in the picture, but I get the feeling he's usually right in the thick of things. Another example is that he's currently in the process of making a bow out of a leaf spring from a truck (long flat slightly curved metal that's used in suspension assemblies) with an arrow made out of steel rebar. He's having to create a pneumatic arm that can actually cock the arrow in the bow because regular humans aren't strong enough. When I asked him what he intends to shoot with it, he shrugged his shoulders, which I took to mean "I'm sure I'll come up with something." But what I've come to realize, and this is the part of the beauty of Jiffy, is that it's not about the end product so much as it is about the journey. Simply figuring out how to make the bow and successfully putting it together is an accomplishment; it doesn't matter what he ends up doing with it. It also doesn't matter how many times he gets it wrong before he figures it out. Because he will figure it out. Eventually.

At 15 years his senior, I'm just now starting to learn how to do this. In the past, I've always done things because the journey was only significant in that it helped me get to the goal, which was clear and purposeful. I really thought that there's no reason to start a journey until you have a clear idea of what your goal is. It wasn't until I signed up for this auto mechanics course that I realized I have no idea what the destination looks like and the journey is changing every day. It's kinda fun.

In class, we've transitioned from learning the basics of electronics into how electricity works in a vehicle, starting with batteries. And batteries are kind of boring.

Yesterday, Nanook was teaching Rain how to cut a mango and Rain started talking about our household experts. It was quite enlightening to see how Rain views our roles in the household. We each had two areas of expertise: SugarFoot's was in not eating dinner very well and being a 3 year old; Nanook's was in cooking and growing things; ThatGuy's was in doing nothing and computers; and my expertise was in reading and coffee. Interestingly, Rain's expertise was in cutting things and drawing (Alternatively, I would deem Rain's expertise is watching TV and complaining about SugarFoot touching her stuff). I noticed that no one's expertise was in cleaning (my mom would be quite disturbed and very disappointed). So what does this say about our household? Well, obviously, she thinks we should be doing more stuff. At least, ThatGuy and I should. In my defense, I just can't bring myself to sit with her and actually watch what she prefers to watch on TV so I pick up my nook and read in the living room while she watches TV. When ThatGuy's on the computer or in his office, she doesn't see what he does so she deems it nothing when really, he's doing something worthwhile. I'm sure of it, although I also don't know what he's doing...

The Mumbler came in with this t-shirt on last night. Again, his 17-year-old stepdaughter picked it out, which I think is awesome.
Have a nice day.

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