Sunday, June 28, 2015

If I Were a Carpenter



Recently, I was riding the train home listening to Johnny Cash & June Carter’s cover of Tim Hardin’s If I Were a Carpenter. On a side note there’s probably not a better guy to listen to on the train.

As the neighborhoods were rolling by with Johnny asking June if she’d still love him “If I worked my hands in wood” my mind drifted to the times I had thought of taking up the trade.

There’s some new construction on my corner and as I go to and from the train I slow my walk as I go by.  I love smell the freshly cut  wood,  the sound of hammering & masons scraping at mortar with their trowels. 

Two months ago there was absolutely nothing on the corner.  Just an empty lot.  Now, there’s a four story building that will keep families out of the rain and terrible Chicago cold for years to come.

Working outside, hammering, sawing, getting tough & calloused hands, cussing; it was very attractive to me.  Plus, the instant gratification.  You could spend an afternoon laying pavers and your handy work could be viewed and appreciated that evening.

Once the train ride was over and June told Johnny “I’d marry you anyway, I’d have your baby.” I lugged my laptop home back past the construction site and thought about my trade.

Now, I don’t think Application Developer is considered a skilled trade.  I didn’t see it listed in the Wikipedia page for Tradesman. But I’d like to think of myself as a skilled tradesman.


Image: cuz analogies

  I set myself up for this and I’m probably sure it’s been done before: Analogies.

  • - My blueprints are the wireframes and design comps from UI/UX & design
  • - The tool belt around my waist is Visual Studio/WebStorm/Sublime
  • - The foreman is my Product Owner and maybe Scrum Master(I’m stretching with this one)
  • - The lunch truck is the same.  It’s 5411 Empanadas
  • - Mortar/Nails === [insert this week’s JavaScript library]
  • - The family who bought the penthouse unit: Internet Explorer
  • - Prefab is WordPress or Medium
  • - Git is the ability to control time and go back to right before you shatter a marble counter with a sledge hammer

So my hands might not be as calloused as I’d like(I do have early onset of Carpal Tunnel), I may not be outside as much(but really in Chicago there’s like a week or two where it’s comfortable to be out in the elements), and Wikipedia may not think I’m a Tradesman but I do. 

Actually, I guess I could just go edit the Wiki page.