Make something to look at

Jul 22, 2013 by

I love building things.  I talk about this subject a lot because its a big part of who I am.  I’m a builder, a fixer, a tinkerer.   I prefer to build vs buy.  I love to fix things to save them from the landfill.

One of the big reasons I love to make things is the sense of pride I get every day from being able to see that thing that I built.  It’s not just a closet door I bought, its MY closet door that I built myself.  That is awesome.  That feeling doesn’t go away.  The effect of walking down my hallway and seeing the results of my work every single day is the best feeling in the world.

So this week’s TSA is to encourage you to build something.  Make something that you will look at every day.  Make something that you can call your own.  Make something that you can show off to your friends.  Make something that is uniquely yours.

“But what if I don’t know how to build things?” you say.

Bullshit. That excuse no longer exists with the internet at your finger tips.  Google it.  Watch how to videos on YouTube.  There are thousands of DIY sites out there that exists solely to teach you how to build stuff.  Go nuts browsing around and find a cool project that captures your imagination and go build it.

You learn how to build things by building things.  So go build something awesome that you can look at each and every day.  It will make you feel just a little more awesome.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing.

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Fix it

Jun 25, 2013 by

I fix stuff.  I can’t help it.

I can’t throw a broken item away without first trying to repair it, and I’d rather buy a used or broken item and fix it than buy a new one.  It just makes all the sense in the world to me to re-use an existing item than to buy a new one and relinquish an older one to the landfill.

I’ve talked about fixing stuff quite a lot on this blog, and I encourage the ideology.  This is why I loved this awesome article on Wired, that talks about not just needing a maker movement (which I also love), but a fixer movement.  Our society is becoming so consumed with convenience and throw away utility that the things we buy today are often built to be thrown away and are often difficult or near impossible to repair or fix.

That just pisses me off.

I hate the idea of planned obsolescence.  That is just evil to me.  Some of my most favorite tools are the ones I got from my grandpa.  They are solid.  They have a weight in your hand, which isn’t always the easiest thing when working with them, but they last.  They aren’t made of cheap plastic that breaks after you use it 3 times.  They can be fixed if they do ever fail.  They are awesome.

So all this talk on fixing is to say, fix you stuff.  Stop throwing away your broken items and fix them, or at least try.  If you are not handy or have no idea how something works in order to fix it, just try.  If its already broken, whats the worst that can happen?

Take it apart and see how it works.  You may just find its a simple loose screw or broken part inside that you can easily replace for 35 cents and save you the cost of the replacing the entire item.

So that is your Truly Simple Action for this week.  Fix something.  Beyond saving yourself some cash and saving that item from landfill you will feel awesome and every time you look at that broken item you repaired you’ll get a great sense of “I am awesome” sweeping over you.

And with that, here is my last fix.

I’ve had a cooler with broken hinges on the lid sitting in my garage for way too long.  I finally got around to fixing it up,and here is the result.

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Here is the cooler stand that became of my broken cooler.

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I took an old pallet and bought some 2×3 for the legs.

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Added a hose bib and connected it to the cooler drain.

Also added a Dr. Pepper bottle cap opener as my wife loves Dr. Pepper.

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And a nice little bottle cap catch to go under it.

Sorry I didn’t take any pictures of the construction of this project.  This was just one I’ve been wanting to fix up for a while and finally got around to it.  I love how it came out and it saved an old broken cooler to now be re-purposed as an awesome cooler on our patio.

So there’s my latest fix.  Show me yours.  What have you fixed lately?

Ben…

Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time. Take time this week to do this one simple thing. Previous TSA’s:

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