email: cavebear2118 AT verizon DOT com

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Fun With Lumber

Or I could title this "I have bad luck on minor things"!  I went out and bought the lumber I needed for the remaining 2 framed garden beds a few days ago.  Back at home, I decided to back the trailer up to the garage so I wouldn't have to carry the heavy preservative-treated wood from the far corner of the front yard where I store the trailer.

I'm sure anyone who has some experience in backing things up with a car knows that the longer the hitched item is, the easier it is to back up because the directions don't change as quickly as with short items.  Well, my trailer is only 8' long, and I couldn't even see it in the rear view mirror, or by opening the front car door and looking out.  I finally had to go in the garage and clamp a board upright in both rear corners of the trailer.  I think I will attach a couple of small flags on dowels attached to the trailer corners!

But I got the twelve 8'x2"x8" boards unloaded into the garage and the trailer put off into the yard corner.  Today, I set about cutting them to size.  The preservative lumber is odd.  They are not a full 2" thick or 8" wide, but thy ARE longer than 8'!  Perhaps that is so the poorly-cut ends can be recut better.

Anyway, I needed most of the boards cut to 7' long, so it didn't really matter.  Except the few end boards which I wanted to cut into two 4' long boards.  Still, the extra length made that not a problem.  I carefully measured each board's length before I made any cuts, and they were all 8'1" long.  Perfect.

Except one board.  Which I failed to measure.  Which was one of the few boards I chose for the two 4' pieces...  So I got a 4' board and a 3'10" board, which just won't make a rectangular framed bed!

Think about it.  For 8 of the boards, it didn't matter (they were getting cut to 7').  For 3 of the remaining 4 boards, I measured (and they were all at 8'1").  The ONE board I didn't remember to measure NEEDED to be 8'1" so that I could square the ends with good smooth cuts.

So the ONE short board had a 1/3 chance of being among the 4 boards that HAD to be over 8' long AND a 1/12 chance of being the only board I didn't measure.  Giving a 1/36 chance THAT board was the only one I didn't measure AND was too short.  Which means that, with 36 sets of identical boards, I would have NOT had a problem 35 times and a problem only once...  And I managed to achieve that "1 in 36 times event".

I have the worst luck with minor things!!!

So now I have to go back to buy 1 board.  Grumble, grumble, grumble...


Katnip Lounge said...

If it wasn't for bad luck...sounds like something that would happen to me!

Megan said...

Sorry Mark. At least you kept your good humour.

Sydney, Australia

Mark's Mews (Ayla, Iza, and Marley) said...

Ah well, part of the fun of life is the random irony...