Sunday, May 19, 2013


I've been feeling disenchanted with the internet of late.

The thing is, I feel that the internet could be, and quite frankly should be, a place where people can get together and share knowledge about how to do things, and make things, and accomplish things.  Where people with similar interests and values can share their dreams and goals and be supported by others.

However, what I find, is quite different.

Groups of people - groups that are suppose to be about building, creating, inventing things - that I find on the internet are full of those who can't or won't try to do something.  If I ask the question on how best to build one small aspect of a project, I get shot down with (what feels like) a thousand 'you're stupid to even try it, you stupid person you.'  Well, maybe not that bad, but bad enough.  So when I want to know how to build a medieval single pole pavilion or how to transform a broken sewing machine into a skill saw that will cut through plastic, wood and metal, I get shot down and told how stupid I am for not buying the thing in the first place.  That it's impossible to make these things without specialized equipment or skills.

And the worst thing about it...

... I start believing them.

It's not just one site, it's all over the internet.  Are all the people with the knowledge I seek, out there doing things, and the internet is simply populated with a congregation of cowards, too afraid to try something because it's not 'efficient' enough.  Surely trying anything would be more efficient than sitting at your keyboard all day telling people how foolish they are for attempting to do things.

I've come to realize two really important things:

1) I am not even remotely normal


2) the internet is terrible for my feeling of self worth.

I don't see what the problem is with spending 2 hours a day, every day, for months on end, working on a project just because I cannot find (or more often, afford) the tool I need to make the thing that I want to use.

Most people spend more time than that watching tv.

Maybe that's exactly my problem.

I just don't know.

What I do know however, is that I'm weird for wanting to make things instead of buy things.  It's unusual for a person to take a look at something that is broken and try to see how to make something totally different, yet functional from it.  I have strangeness in that I live a live very close to my values - the most influential one being to leave a place better than how I found it.  And, that I think better means more sustainable.  It's a quaint oddity that I make my own food from scratch, every meal, and that I do it on a budget.  These things I know.

On days like these, I wonder if it's me that needs to change, or would I be happier finding a mountain somewhere and setting up a hermitage?

I wonder, has my time blogging left the internet a better place than how I found it?
How can there be so many people out there, and yet feel so isolated?
I do not fit.

ps, sorry, I keep meaning to get some good photos of the converted sewing machine saw I made, but it's currently coated with sawdust and active projects.  I know, it's been simply ages since I tantalized you with the project, but here's a photo of some cards I made for weaving.

 Really cool medieval tablet weaving.  I needed practice for an upcoming event, but didn't have any, so I used a banged up deck of cards and a hole punch.  Works great, but probably will wear out quite quickly.

There, I managed to end on a positive note.  More on the card weaving later.  I just need to find some motivation to pick up the camera and take some more photos for you.

1 comment:

dahlofwool said...

This post is lovely. Being comfortable with incremental tasks seems to be thin on the ground in recent decades.
And now I'm glad I kept the junky "free casino" playing cards someone gave me. I've been pondering inkle weaving for a bit, and i think the plasticy cards would be perfect for the use you've illustrated!