Wednesday, February 21, 2007

I've been reading a good book, recommended by a friend Reuben Rajala who keeps me informed of articles about woodworking education. The book Wooden Boats by Michael Ruhlman, is about the Gannon & Benjamin boatyard in Martha's Vinyard and the men and women who make and design wooden boats. It is truly a wonderful book for anyone who might either love boats, or feel drawn to acquiring a better understanding of the human desire to create with integrity and greater purpose. Michael Ruhlman's book is a story well told about the lives of boat makers, the making of wooden boats, and the people who might be inspired (being "boatstruck") to commission wooden boats costing hundreds of thousands of dollars, but saving for the present the means and methods of work that reflect the essense of our humanity.

But then, we could just forget about all that hands-on stuff and live virtual lives though our desktops and PDAs. We'll download our music and our thoughts instead of making music and thinking thoughts of our own. We can shape our schools and education to prevent our children taking risks and having experiences that might lead them to creative lives. Oh, wait a minute...aren't we doing that already?

You might enjoy the book. It is an entertaining one. Then when you're done, make something. Invest your attention and integrity. It doesn't even have to be a boat.

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