An Overwhelming WIA Surprise
For those of you who couldn’t make it this year, I (and many others, no doubt) will be posting about the sessions, the speakers, the camaraderie and the would-be mortgage money we cheerfully spent in the Marketplace (every last dollar of the not-insignificant amount I put in my wallet on Thursday night was gone by Saturday).
But there’s one person I must thank immediately – Steve Schafer, a long-time reader and supporter of the magazine from Athens, Ohio, whom I’ve had the pleasure of meeting at many events, from tool shows in our shop to this summer’s wood sale at Midwest Woodworking.
At the Friday evening dinner, I raced through my remarks (large crowds scare me), then invited Roy Underhill up to say a few words about our featured speaker, Peter Follansbee, while I scurried back to my seat. But before introducing Peter, Roy invited Steve up to say a few words. Now I planned the program for the dinner; that wasn’t in it. My immediate reaction was…unprintable. But it went something like, “What the bleep is Roy doing?!”
Well it turns out that Steve made for me the lovely plane featured above, and he arranged to give it to me at the banquet. I was wholly flabbergasted and honored, and words (the right ones, anyway) failed me. I truly have no idea what I said in front of, oh, 800 people, in response to his generosity of both time and effort. I hope I said thank you – if not, Steve, I’m saying it now.
The plane is pink ivory with a black ebony cat inlay (and yes, it works), and is in a dovetailed presentation box of bloodwood. I had to take the photo with it atop the only lace I could find in the house (no doilies to be had, I’m afraid). It all makes sense if you’ve read this Chris Schwarz post from last January…all but the cat – though I guess everyone knows by now how I feel about felines.
Again, thank you Steve – I have a new most-treasured (and one-of-a-kind) tool.