A Strategy for Woodworking #50: Do Good Work

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Blog entry by Gary Rogowski posted 05-05-2015 07:01 PM 1680 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 49: My Transmutable Bench Part 50 of A Strategy for Woodworking series Part 51: Taking Down a Tree »

How can anyone afford to do good work these days? Isn’t the strain of surviving enough to make mediocre work good enough? As that famous poet once said, You gonna have to serve somebody. So who’s it gonna be? Your landlord or the voice inside you asking you to do it right this time.

I can’t choose for you. I can only choose for myself. These were the standards I said I had to adhere to and if I couldn’t meet those then it wasn’t worth doing. Yeah, some days those standards were higher than others. Yep, some days I wanted to jump off a cliff rather than do the nitpicky goddang minutiae, why-in-the-hell-worry-‘bout-that-spot kinda work I can get involved in sometimes. Sometimes that money losing work is enough to drive you crazy.

But when it’s done right, when the job is done, and you’ve done it 4 times just to get it right and you step back and you look at your work, the ability to be able to say, It was done right. That was worth a lot to me. Cheap taco dinners usually, but worth eating them in order to be able to walk away satisifed. Mastery ain’t for everybody. That’s why it’s called mastery and not mediocrity.

Signature Piece by Mastery student, Patrick McGlade, 2014

-- Gary Rogowski...follow my podcast at and twitter @garyrogowski

5 comments so far

View willie's profile


534 posts in 3054 days

#1 posted 05-05-2015 07:06 PM

If you can’t do it right, why bother!

-- Every day above ground is a good day!!!

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3290 days

#2 posted 05-06-2015 12:03 AM

That secretary is certainly up to anyone’s standards. Just perfect in every regard.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View DocSavage45's profile


8881 posts in 3442 days

#3 posted 05-06-2015 01:01 AM

I do think it is something we have to learn to do.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View Schwieb's profile


1896 posts in 4061 days

#4 posted 05-06-2015 10:20 AM

I understand this and try to live by it in everything I do, and certainly in what I make but I am no master, just striving for the best I can do with what I have. My Master was a Jewish carpenter, I work like he’s watching.

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View Roger's profile


21030 posts in 3404 days

#5 posted 05-09-2015 05:17 PM

Right on Gary!

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

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