Like me, you dream of things that we can’t have. Recalling a few snug shops I’ve worked in for boatbuilders or lobstermen, I’d love a shop large enough for a small woodstove. A place large enough to warm up by on a January morning while I plan out what I am making for a March show. To me, that would be palatial, which shows that one person’s palace is another’s hovel. But, don’t worry; I know that my shop is unlovely.

No, don’t be reticent about it. I know you’d prefer a kitchen, a new Macmansion, or a total re-do on the master bath.

I sometimes snicker about that truism that says, “Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get.” Like a lot of Dale Carnegie quotes, it’s a bit sappy. If I want sappy, I can spend the rest of this morning listening to commercial jingles on Youtube. No, I prefer something a bit less intense on the “I’ll be happy with what I’ve got” end of things. Say Sydney Harris’ take on it: “Happiness is a direction, not a place.”

I like the emphasis of this quote – off of the material and onto the aspirational. It says that I am on a journey, not sitting in a place. It keeps us from worry. Worry about the leaks in the new bath, the lousy foundation of the Macmansion, or the lousy draft of my new wood stove.

But that little heater in the shop doesn’t do it. I sure wish I could have that woodstove.

11 Replies to “Aspirations”

    1. I feel humbled…flues and a plumbed toilet? As we used to say on the Coast, in the day, “how highly permuched!” no don’t bother googling it it’s a bit of local dialect so obscure that nobody recognizes it anymore.


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