During the early part of my woodworking writing career, several well-meaning people tried to take me under their wings. One took me out for drinks. A couple others even took me out to dinner. Here is the message they wanted to deliver:
“You could be the next <insert woodworking celebrity here>,” they said, “if you would just show real reverence for the craft. You know, respect for its traditions and history.”
“You mean, I should stop making jokes about farts and open sores?” I replied.
“Uh, basically, yes.”
The conversations always went downhill after that. So before one of you decides to take me aside and offer some good career advice, allow me to say a few words.
The craft of woodworking is not a religion. The craft does not care if you use dirty words or pious ones. There are no prayers that are part of the craft. There is no spiritual component that is required for woodworking proficiency. You will not be a better woodworker if you use fewer (or more) cuss words or go pants-optional at Walmart. You can be a craven criminal, a priest or both and still be an outstanding or lousy woodworker.
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