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2016-11-04 05:57 pm

A Guide to Chairmaking

I don’t use my hands a lot in my line of work. I think and I type; I build systems out of logic and functions in my mind, a brilliant collection of interlocking ideas, then implement them in the limited representations available in the form of programming languages; shackling the sacred with chains of the profane. It’s all cerebral; in the end, what I do amounts to pressing pieces of plastic to make other pieces of plastic change colour.

It can get depressing, you know?

To fight that feeling, I started making things. Not ideas, not mental constructs, but tangible physical objects. I guess that makes me a bit of a hipster. I like the way that wood spins in the lathe, how the mallet and chisel cut grooves, how the saw and the die interact.

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2016-11-03 09:21 pm

Hunting Blue

It’s lunchtime in the Bannister and Shamrock when my client walks in. You know the place; it used to be the Rose and Crown but now it’s some horrible faux-Oirish dump because the brewery are idiots. Anyway, it’s near to my flat and cheap enough, so the pub remains the nearest thing I have to an office. My client — no names, I work under a strict cover of professional confidentiality — tells me that she is looking for Blue. At first, I thought she meant a person or a dog or something.

“No, Mr. Sherringford. I’m talking about the colour.”

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2016-10-11 09:11 am

Why Does the Sweet Potato Pine?

Why does the sweet potato pine?
It pines for it knows
The other potatoes.
The regal King Edward sat up on its throne,
Holding court over spuds white and red:
Its herald, the Rooster,
Maris Piper, the sheriff,
Ambassadors Arran Victory, Yukon Gold.
The sweet potato pines for it has no place in this court,
And thinks monarchy outdated and cruel

Why does the sweet potato pine?
It pines for it knows
The other potatoes.
Paupers, lives blunted and cruel.
Baby Gem, so innocent, until boiled up and sliced,
Salad Blue just a novelty by now.
The mocking appellation of the Jersey Royal,
Still a peasant, along with the rest.
The sweet potato pines for it was once overlooked,
But showed kindness, unlike the rest.

Why does the sweet potato pine?
It pines for it knows
The other potatoes
The Majestic, glory faded but not letting go;
Desiree, who once was a star.
Violetta, made up in indigo and blue.
Famed names: Lady Balfour, Picasso, Vivaldi,
Not a one with their namesake’s longevity.
The sweet potato pines for it has celebrity.
But never let fame go to its head.

Why does the sweet potato pine?
It pines for it knows
The other potatoes,
And they’re all utter bastards.