I’m super excited about two new things this week. They both involve dusting off old skills that I’ve missed, and hopefully learning some new ones.
Here at work there’s a pickup bluegrass/cover band with some very nice folks who play guitar, mandolin, violin, piano, and viola, and after hearing them play I mentioned they made me want to pick up my bass again. This led to an invitation to sit in with them, so I’m pulling the top two strings off my guitar and sitting in with them this evening. They’ve been playing a mixture of Nickel Creek and gypsy jazz tunes, all of which are outside of my normal repertoire, but I sat down with two of them last night and had a lot of fun learning them. I have no idea how this evening will go, or how much they practice, but it would be a lot of fun to play live again, and a nice excuse to find a cheap acoustic bass guitar. We’ll see.
The second thing is an opportunity to relearn basic welding. I got a notice through Meetup about the Baltimore Foundery holding a Welding 101 class, and for $65 I’m going to re-orient myself with the basics of stick welding on Sunday afternoon. Back at MICA my roommate took sculpture classes as part of his BFA, and he got me into the metal workshop one evening where I gave the TA a six-pack of beer to give me a half an hour orientation on MIG welding. We spent a couple of evenings practicing, and I made a crude stand for my bass out of scrap metal, as well as several huge monster sculptures for our backyard. I’ve forgotten everything since then.
Recently, discussing my garage with my electrician neighbor, he pointed out that it would be easy to run power from the big circuit in the greenhouse back to the garage, so I dug a trench to run conduit–it’s still open, waiting for a free weekend afternoon where we can run the line and cover it back up. This will allow for a dedicated 110 line to the garage, and the ability to run power and, eventually, a stick welder out there.