Seven Years in the Making

Apr 29, 2011

Seven years ago I went out and bought lumber and poles for a fence to section off a storage area. No sooner did I get started when I was called away for a paying gig far from home. Pulling into my driveway three months later, putting up a gate to the storage area wasn’t at the top of my To-Do list.

Somehow, year after year, the fence never got finished. Sometimes I would pull the termite infested wood out of the weeds, search for scattered hardware, and make an effort to complete the project, but something else always came up. Paid gigs, personal projects, a lazy WOW day, even writing pointless, rambling journal entries always seemed to take priority.

Spring 2011 brought no hope for the unfinished fence. Consumed by one of the most massive set building projects of my life, every minute of every day was allotted somewhere else, and the gate again fell to the wayside. The piles of barbed wire, sharp rusted metal, and thousands of other dangerous objects still occupied the storage area, a threat to clients, visitors, and drunken friends. On my list of stuff to do, but in danger of going another year untouched.

But help was on the way.
Smoking Area
Jeremy Bartlett and Steve Maruska, Burning Man campmates and drinking buddies, offered to spend some time helping me get the growing list of unfinished projects under control. A few shots of Bushmills later, I walked to the pile of weeds, rotted wood, and buried hardware and pointed to the gap where the gate was supposed to be.

“Fill that space with that shit over there,” I instructed. “You know where the tools are.”

“No Problem.”

A few hours of 80′s music, random tool sounds, and occasional cursing later, I had a gate. Staring at the shattered wood, cracked edges, and construction method summed up by Steve as “Measure Nonce”, a smile formed, and the reality finally sunk in.

I HAD A FUCKING GATE
Frankengate
Not one square corner. Not one smooth edge. A rather complicated latching system and enough nail points to make the gate arguably as dangerous as what it was supposed to be sealing off. But none of that mattered, because this beautiful frankenstein monster was 100% better than the gate I’d started building seven years ago.

As the familiar commercial goes -

$50 Fence Materials
$10 Hardware
$.25 Nails.
Having friends who’ve never built a gate before come over and build a gate you couldn’t finish in seven years…
Job Well Done
Fucking Priceless.

——-
Cross-posted to deviantART.
Copyright 2011 by Adam Chilson


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