Yesterday I was fired up to work on the dovetailed box since I’d managed to get the sides and ends ready. A few practice cuts, and then I dove in. And cut one crappy dovetail. Followed by a second. I took a break, did some stuff, and came back and cut an acceptable dovetail that I then botched with overzealous cleaning. The last one was no better than the first. Evidence of the carnage below.
Looking at the “box” at the end of the day I was feeling pretty meh. Whatever excuses aside, I’d done some miserable work. And then I got some perspective. I’d just gotten to practice cutting dovetails 4 times in a day. The most I’d been able to do in the last year was 1 a day. And it wasn’t a complete loss. I now have a few boards for practice ready, and I’d worked on my muscle memory for the task.
This morning I took it slow, cut one practice dovetail after warming up and cutting yesterdays failure into practice sized bits.
And with some confidence coming back I kept the slow and steady pace and cut the first tail of another box.
Perfect? No. But that’s not what I’m going for. At least not today. I try to keep in mind that focusing on where you want to be sometimes just reminds you of how far you have to go. Healthy perspective can come from realising just how far you’ve gone so far. Doing better than yesterday, and even yesterday was better than some of the butchery I’ve committed before.