31 December, 2017

Moments In Between: 25 Hours of Light and Darkness

There's a saying in motorsports: "fast is slow; slow is fast." And while it's questionable advice for the actual technique of driving, it's still relevant for the driver's mindset. Actions that feel fast tend to be reactive — something happened and you were fast enough to catch it and respond. Like if you trip while walking and you catch yourself — it certainly takes a bunch of skill and experience to avoid a spill, but tripping and recovering still slowed you down.

By contrast, a feeling of slowness tends to accompany actions that don't even require a reaction. Maybe you predicted the problem and avoided it entirely — you saw that raised edge in the pavement and you adjusted your stride to walk right past it. When a driver has a feeling of slowness during the race, it often means that they're actually moving fast. They are relaxed and in control of the situation. Their actions are precise and proportionate. Deliberate.

But the specific memories that we retain about an event tend to center around the fast moments, and the slow periods tend to be compressed and forgotten. We anchor on the things that were exciting, and everything else fades away.

31 October, 2017

Community (pianissimo, part 3)

Part of the magic of a piano is that they are always surrounded by art. But art has a way of summoning forth old communities, and of spurring the creation of new ones. This move was no exception.

The night before the move, I took a picture of the space, because I wanted to see how it would transform.

30 September, 2017

The Delivery (pianissimo, part 2)

Part one of "pianissimo" argued that moving a piano is an art. With many works of art, there is a particular scene, or moment, or passage that comes to embody the greater work. A part that symbolizes the whole. For me, the sight of a grand piano flying above a small San Francisco skyline was that moment.

Let's take a step back. "Pianissimo" is the story of how my friends' cherished piano made it from their old home to their new one. So how does this scene fit into the big picture?

12 September, 2017

Timber, Day 2: Jenga

In the first day-two post, we got the tree down to a height short enough that we could fell the remainder all at once. All that was left was to make it happen.

Because trees widen near the base, Matt planned to switch his standard saw to a longer bar and chain to get some extra reach. That plan had to change once he discovered that the longest chain he could find wasn't quite long enough for the bar he needed. Plan B was to fire up an old Husqvarna 3120XP that Mark had previously acquired for his chainsaw mill. It hadn't run in awhile, but some coaxing and old timer magic got it up and running.