We have three seasons where I live: Winter, Mud and Construction. Winter is about 8 months long. Mud Season is due to the fact that most of our roads are not paved – it makes life interesting and can begin and end at any time. Then there is Construction Season. It begins when the ground is clear of frost and goes until it freezes once more. Or right now.
The birds are out, the snow is in the mountains and not in the valley and the call is in the air. The deep throated roar of power tools.
They come in small to extremely large varieties. Some are mobile and some fixed. Most are stiff, while a few have flexible parts.
From the male point of view, these are not considered toys. They can be used recreationally, but only with the utmost care and reverence. The louder and more powerful the tool, the better. For a man, these tools are an extension of himself. They like to show off their tools – accompanied with manly Tim Allen grunts – point out their size and fire up their motors in thrilling displays of strength and mastery.
From the female point of view, these are objects that are to be admired in loving support of our significant others. We might comment on the size or the firmness or the power as we hold a tool in our hands, but we don’t put them on the same pedestal as men. We also understand the time and care that they need with regular oil and maintenance routines planned. However, they are there for a purpose. Handling one can be fun, but more often its use needs to be scheduled when we have the time.
Men are fascinated when women use power tools. This is in a completely different category than the chest thumping, masculine display with other men. When a woman picks up a power tool, men view it from another perspective entirely. They scrutinize technique. They make notes on the familiarity of the tool handler. And most importantly, they scope out the skill involved.
Construction Season has begun. Tools of all shapes and sizes are revving up their motors and structures are being erected every where.