Unplugged my table saw for the last time


My wife and I have been working on cleaning up our living space and removing things we no longer need or use. We’ve been talking about it for a while now, but after watching the Marie Kondo Netflix series, it got us moving. Well, that and the disastrous economic situation awaiting Alaska over the next few months. Better to sell things now than wait until everyone is broke.

Anyhow, I had been planning on hitting the workshop slightly later in the spring, but someone already offered to buy the table saw. So, I need to get it ready to go. I also needed to get in there to make space for another shitty task planned for the weekend. As you might imagine, this required more than just shuffling things to the side. I actually had to start going through things and organizing them. You know the process, “This goes here, this is trash, what the hell is this for? etc…” No problem.

Then, I actually got to the saw and unplugged it. It was a totally flippant move. I didn’t think about it, wasn’t really thinking about it, just going about my business getting things together. I set the plug on the table top, as one does, next to the push-block I used to use. It’s yellow and narrow and can be used as a square plus it fits really neatly right in a slot on my fence. It hit me. I won’t ever be using this saw again. Maybe never make another stick of furniture again.

I had no idea getting rid of that saw was going to feel so much. When Stacy and I talked about getting rid of the tools, which was my decision, by the way, I said if I wanted to do it again, I could start over with better tools and purpose. Looking at my little push-block sitting in its usual spot made me realize that’s total bullshit. The minute I unplugged that saw I was done. For good. I was not prepared for that realization, and I am not happy about it.  I mean, I legitimately teared up and had to step away for (it’s why I’m here instead of finishing the job.)

I used to spend hours behind it getting covered in saw-dust as it ground through all manner of projects. When I was feeling stressed, I would get out there and work on shit and it always involved that saw. It was my work-top, my work-horse, and my thinking table. When I stood out there, wearing my ear-protection and goggles, all the ills of the world just melted away. It was like meditation for me. The only thing that mattered was not fucking up whatever was in front of me, to include my fingers.

Marie Kondo tells people to keep the things that bring them joy. It sounds like great advice, but like so much sappy shit on TV or online, it’s just a fucking platitude that’s been dressed up with different words to seem new and fresh. I don’t want to get rid of that saw, I really, really don’t. I’d much rather be out there making things and taking the edge off, but it’s not possible anymore. Life has gotten too busy for things like that, and I don’t see it getting better. This isn’t just about me wanting to spend more time writing, or even about my wife working more. There’s a lot more here that I could bitch about for hours, so I’ll leave it at this. I’m pretty upset by this, and tomorrow is going to be a lot worse for totally different, identical, reasons. In any case, this is a decision I’ve already made for a lot of good reasons, so the tools are going, and a pretty important bit of me is going with them.