A Cottage Man and His Power Tools

Day 3 and we have are knee-deep in power tool-driven projects. Does that sound backwards? Aren’t powertools an accessory to projects?

They are not.

Cottage Women everywhere know this: If she wants to get some custom work done in the cabin – whether it’s beamed ceilings, bookshelves, or something like … say … a whole brand new kitchen, the way there is through the hardware store’s power tool department, for there is no man who can resist the allure of a trigger-controlled device. It’s why guns’ popularity endures despite all arguments against them. They take away the messy and taxing business of subduing opponents by hand. Little effort; big output.

After years of watching Cottage Man fall and hand-saw and split trees, I bought him a chainsaw for his birthday. He sat and stared at it for a long time, trying to divine the plot behind this seemingly generous and altruistic gift. It appeared the jig was up, but then the moment of suspicion passed and life here at the lake was forever changed.

Instead of taking weeks to put up a cord of wood, he could be finished in a day, shorter if he enlisted (drafted) the Cottage Children. Less time on logs led to more time on lumber – a transition smoothed by the acquisition of a jigsaw, a circular saw, any saw that I could get my hands on.

Take heed younger Cottage Women – as I write this, I am surrounded by custom shelving, boardwalks that ease the climb up and down our steep shore property, cute oar-and-paddle stair posts, a sturdy outhouse, a raised garden box, a deck expanded three times in size, a charming bunkhouse and yes, that brand new cottage kitchen.

Thank you Ryobi, Dremel and DeWalt.

The benefits are not lopsided; powertools help Cottage Man as much as they do Cottage Woman.

The scream of a chainsaw biting into a leg of jack pine is far softer on the ears than listening to the cousin play his harmonica in the same three-note chorus for the hundredth time.  I’m stuck running the blender to drown out the whine of the Cottage Children, but Dave can aurally overwhelm an entire scout pack’s singing with a circular saw.

Power tools. Get them. Building things and preserving family relations since 1895.

And that’s the third day from the lake, where the loons are calling, but no one knows who, and we haven’t sold the place yet.

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