At least my carbon footprint is small

I am the man. I’m half horse and half alligator. When I roar, mighty beasts flee.

After a white collar guy like me does a job of work like I did today (and last night), he’s entitled to beat his chest a bit, I think. Because that’s all the reward he’s likely to get.

Picking up last night’s enthralling narrative, not long after I posted yesterday evening I got a call from the school’s dean, saying they were canceling classes tomorrow (that is, today) due to the snow.

I went to bed earlier than usual, needing the rest pretty badly. I didn’t set my alarm clock.

I got up around 7:30, ate my breakfast, and went out to face the day and the evil thereof.

We’d had more snow overnight, and high winds as well, so there was a lot of drifting. I was tempted to think that all my work of the previous night had been wasted, but I think it would have been harder without it.

I had the idea that if I set up my rope-tourniquet differently, I could get a tighter hold and hold a seal on the snowblower tire.

I found that my rope wasn’t strong enough to do what I wanted it to do. It snapped.

So I reverted to Plan B, and took up the shovel again.

Briefly put, it took a long time. I rested frequently, and more often as time went on.

My neighbor’s wife came back from work around 10:00, because her office had closed too. She joined me when I was about half way down the driveway, and together we finished it up.

This is how it looks in my back yard today:


It’s snowed some more since, but I don’t think it’s going to interfere with me when I drive to Hutchinson for a Viking Age Society event tomorrow. It’ll be indoors, in a mall, but we’ll do live steel, so I’ll be able to try out my new shield(s):


I apologize for the egregious ugliness of the rawhide edging on the finished shield in the picture. It was the first time I’d worked with rawhide, and I went far astray.

I made a point of showing the back of one shield so you could see the handle. This handle construction is (I believe) my own invention, and I predict it will be a major success with live steel fighters, bringing me… nothing at all.

Archaeology tells us that Viking shields (which were made out of boards laid side-by-side, not plywood like these fakes) usually had handles made of wood. But sometimes the wood handles were covered by a gutter-shaped iron covering, making them stronger.

When I bought the wood molding (it has a precise name, but I’ve forgotten it) for my handles, I worried that it wouldn’t be sturdy enough. Finally I decided to buy some thin steel bar stock in a 1” width. I drilled holes for my fastening bolts through both steel and wood, and came up with a fairly light, pretty strong handle, based on the Viking principle.

I’ll see how it works tomorrow.

If I’m able to move after all this shoveling.

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