If you could learn a trade — say carpentry, electrical work, roofing, landscaping, plumbing, flooring, drywall — you name it — what skill(s) would you love to have in your back pocket?


For nearly 46 years, I’ve watched my talented husband work magic with his hands.  He has an arsenal of tools that would make any skilled tradesman weep.  Chests, drawers, buckets, his van, two sheds, a garage, a basement–all full of tools varying from gigantic to miniscule. And he knows how to use them all. He understands how t hings come apart, and how to put them back together.  If he doesn’t understand it, he’ll figure it out.  Sometimes he even consults a book or, more recently, the internet.

Now, there’s something I never thought I’d see–Terry using the internet!

Anyway, as I think about this prompt, I’m not sure I’d want any specific selection of skills.  In the tool drawer in my kitchen, I have the basics:  Hammer, pliers, flat-blade and Phillip’s screwdriver.  Those things usually take me wherever I need to go.

Rather than add to my small tool collection, I think I’d rather have the intuitive understanding Terry does about how to make things work. Machines are a mystery to me; to him, they’re the best toys in the world.

I remember, in ninth grade, a poor frustrated science teacher trying to explain the basics of a car engine to the class. I noticed him glancing up at me several times as he taught, clearly reading the boredom and incomprehension in my eyes. I just couldn’t care.  I feel pretty much the same about car engines as I do about football.  Meh.

Now, older and a tiny bit wiser, I wish I could have cared.  I wish I’d had the same curiosity about mechanical science as I did, for instance, about astronomy.  Now, there was a subject I could love!

So, anyway.  What skills would I want for this new  trade?

An inquiring mind, that’s what.  If you have that, everything else will come in its proper time.

11 thoughts on “Skills

  1. My husband is a thinker. A dreamer. An analyzer of human annals and current events. He cannot change a washer or hang a picture. Or open a crate, assemble anything. He is master of the TV remote control. He has conquered email and the microwave, but texting is still in his future. He is learning the difference between software and hardware. Gardens are his delight, but not his job. He does a GREAT load of laundry, and his grocery shopping skills are indisputably amazing. He can add fluid to the windshield washers — and I can’t even find them. He can open the hoods of the cars — and I cannot.
    We are who we are.

    Our son can build a house from scrap wood left over from packing crates and visualize the entire project in 3D without measuring or drawing. How is he related to us?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. None of our sons inherited their dad’s natural skill, but we have a couple of grandsons who seem to have the knack. One, in perticular, loves spending time working with Grandpa on projects. Maybe it skips a generation. 🙂


      1. Anne

        Well. Anyway. It does take a bit of “skill” to realize the “injustice” of it all, does it not? And to adjust or behave or appreciate accordingly as we are…able…and smile or laugh in relief OUR skills are needed 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. My oldest son can fix anything. At age ten, he installed a ceiling fan in his brother’s room! I had bought it for my husband to install that night. David looked at it, read the instructions and installed it while I ran the other boys to soccer. “Surprise, mom! Look what I did!”

    My other sons can sing, dance, throw women in the air and catch them…but they would have a very hard time installing a light fixture with out electrocuting themselves. Even if there was no power to the house.

    I love them all. And pray the others earn a good enough living to hire men like David and your husband to complete their honey-do lists.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: If I had a hammer! | My Kaleidoscope

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