A tangled web 

Things seem to be going a little slow in our house right now. Aside from an occasional visit to the grocery store and a daily walk, my wife and I have not traveled anywhere yet and do not plan to do so, at least until we get the proper dose of the COVID vaccine. When I talk to friends who take similar precautions, I am often asked: What do you do to keep yourself busy? Honestly, I can’t say I’m bored. I always find something to do, and maintaining my outdoor gear is something that always keeps me busy.

For example, I have a tree stand that is light and very easy to install, but I had a problem. Some time ago, when I was younger and dumber, I took the seat off because I preferred to stand while hunting with the bow. In recent years, however, I have decided that sitting is better. No problem, I thought. All I had to do was put the seat back and I could use the bracket again the next season. Turns out it won’t be that easy.

The stand comes with a thick, comfortable foam seat that is supported by a nylon mesh. When I disconnected the seat, I also disconnected the wiring harness from the frame. The problem I had now was how to attach the bandage to the seat support. I’m not the smartest when it comes to the logic of these things, and my talent for abstract thinking rivals that of second-rate people. I had no choice but to call in an expert. My wife is an excellent seamstress and can sew almost anything, but together we couldn’t figure out how to attach the fabric.

I always brag that I have friends in the low countries, so I dragged a retired engineer to the shop who can fix things.  I explained the problem and he looked at me like I was missing fries, like I was missing a Happy Meal.  I don’t think you can’t find out, he said with some uncertainty.  An hour later, I proudly put the rack back in the truck, and the broom remained intact.  The net must be on the other side, my acquaintance said as we left. At least now I knew I wasn’t as stupid as I thought.

Now I was excited about the situation. There must be a solution. In the end, all that was needed was to add a few inches of nylon gasket, but no one could figure out how to do it. I put my wife back in her place. This time she examined the block more closely and said: Looks like there was a loop and the seam ripped out. I can fix that.

Okay, if you say so, I responded with some enthusiasm, which would have solved my problem.

I was wrong. She sewed the braid so that both sides were equal, but we still couldn’t figure out how the braid was connected to the foam seat. At that moment Lady Luck appeared.

I was reviewing photos for an article I was working on that day, when I came across a file titled Fall Hunting Scenes. Thinking one of the photos could be the subject of an article, I opened the file and here they are. Six old photos of my cab with the seat and stand installed. What a chance!

I called my wife and showed her the pictures, and together we quickly figured out how to weave the strap around the cabin frame and secure the seat.  When you see the finished product, it looks like something a third grader can already do, but as far as I’m concerned, mission accomplished!  All I needed was a day of my time, a smart woman, a little luck, some old photos and a 12 mile drive to my friend’s house.

I’m trying to stay busy and haven’t smoked a cigarette or watched Captain Kangaroo yet, but don’t tell me I have nothing to do.

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