Monday, October 26, 2009

I Haven’t Forgotten You


It’s just been a very busy day compounded by a migraine complete with the whole nausea bit. My favorite kind.

The headache is mostly gone now, leaving me feeling, as usual, as if I had been kicked through a cement wall into a Sarah Palin fund raiser.

I’m taking pictures of the birdhouses, once I get them cataloged and priced they’ll be posted for your buying enjoyment, I’m trying to make that tonight. We’ll see how that goes. I may just end up on the couch watching Heroes, in which case you’ll just have to wait another day, I’m not risking a migraine reflash.

If you don’t get in on this batch, there will be more (figure about two weeks – I’m waiting on a wood shipment).

I’m also waiting for a woodturning air filtration helmet. I’m almost positive that this latest headache was triggered by me breathing a modest amount of either oak dust or rosewood dust – both of which are irritants and can cause respiratory problems. I run very good dust collection while turning and sanding, and all of my woodworking equipment is hooked up to a cyclone dust/chip collector – but no system is 100% perfect, especially when it comes to a lathe. By the time I finished up in the shop last night I knew I had sucked in way too much dust.

I hate standard air masks, they’re hot and uncomfortable and they make my safety glasses fog up – and after years of wearing a gas mask under uncomfortable conditions, I just plain have an aversion to the damned things.

Accordingly, I’ve ordered a professional woodturner’s filtration helmet with a powered air supply. Actually, I ordered it two weeks ago via express delivery (those of you who bought the first batch of birdhouses paid for it, thank you very much). It arrived two days later. Smashed. Looks like it left the warehouse that way. The distributor is sending me a new one, which should be here tomorrow. Safety first, you know.

Just keeping you in the loop.

Update: Not happening tonight. Camera batteries died a couple of pictures into the process. I thought I had a fully charged spare, but what I actually had was a fully discharged spare. Sigh. Tomorrow, for sure.


  1. Hello Jim,

    Haven't piped up for a while, sorry I've been lurking though and as always, I've truly enjoyed your blog.

    I'm looking forward to bidding on one of your bird houses, anything I can do to support the cause. :)

    Your migraine has reminded me of my many years of retail sales in the supplement industry. I know you've probably already looked into things that might help your condition, but I had to ask if you'd ever considered taking Feverfew?

    If this is a new suggestion to you I'd suggest checking out the following article at...


    In the years that I sold this among many other herbal remedies, this was always the favorite.


  2. Joe, I have an odd variant of migraines, nothing much helps - though while I'm in the clutches of one I often think that drilling holes in my head with an electric drill would help (I visualize the drill punching through skull, followed by a blast of high pressure steam in a screaming whistle not unlike a burst boiler - because it feels like the inside of my head is pressurized to about 300PSI).

    I'm not much of a fan of herbal or folk remedies, but I tried feverfew supplements a number of years ago after somebody I knew insisted that it was a miracle cure. For me, it was far less effective than a couple of Excedrin and a cup of strong coffee. (That goes for that stupid Head-On (apply directly to the forehead) crappola too.) Supposedly, according to the guy I knew, feverfew is something you should take every day and it is supposed to prevent migraines. Didn't work for me, and the withdrawal symptoms are very unpleasant - and usually involve a pounding headache.

    But I appreciate the suggestion.

  3. Jim,

    Sympathy on the headache! I get cluster headaches when the weather changes from hot-and-dry to cool-and-more-humid, and when I dust my books.

    So, I can't control the weather, but I made a decision never to dust my books. Fewer headaches that way!

    My uncle R. used to spend about a week a year in the hospital, one day at a time, when he got a migraine. He had the continuous-vomiting, oh-my-god-don't-turn-on-the-light kind. The introduction of the drug Imitrex changed his life. He was one of the lucky ones who could inject himself at the first symptom and stop the migraine in its tracks. My cousins both inherited the migraines from him and both carry imitrex injections on their persons.

    I hope the migraine releases you soon.

  4. Wow. That is gorgeous. Excellent use of color!

  5. My migraines these days are triggered by changes in weather or an allergy attack. Today the pain is lurking just beyond the pre-maigraine eye pain & aura range, if it stays there it won't turn into a migraine. And the cause? it is pouring rain with varying levels of pressure...again.

    Jim, you got any gopher wood you can spare? I think we're going to need a bigger boat.

  6. For those of you who don't know, ScottE is a professional artist, so I'm going to take that as a major compliment.

    Scott, the red is an aniline dye. I thought it worked with the natural dark brown walnut body extemely well.

  7. That preview piece is simply exquisite. You need to jack up your prices! I suspect you could sell em easily at 3-4 times the price, especially if you did a benefit type deal where a portion goes to a charity.

    That said, I'm noticing your main page is really slow to load the last few days. The slowdown seems to happen as the page reroutes through Digg.com. I don't know if it's due to the Digg This button or something else, as I haven't really dug into it (har) but thought I'd give you the heads-up.

    Comment pages are fine, but the main page is crazy-slow, even on the T1 at work.

  8. What kind of filter helmet? A cursory google brought no joy, although it's amusing to note that using your phrase brought up this very post in the first page of search results. I'm curious as I hate goggles and a filter mask as well.

  9. Trend Air Shield Pro

    If the cursed thing ever gets here, I'll do a review on it. At the moment, in my head, I'm writing the scathingly negative review of the place I bought it (not Woodcraft, i.e. the link above, which is where I should have bought it. Woodcraft has stellar service).

  10. Ah, I see that I shouldn't have been using the word "helmet" though I'd guessed something like this.

    Yes, a review in a while after you've taken it through it's paces would be very cool. Thanks!

    Good luck with the migranes, I get 'em when my sinuses combine with my allergies, which is a few times a year.

    My wife thinks that the drill in the skull scenes from Pi are the closest she's see to an accurate portrayal of migranes.

  11. That reminds me of a hockey mask.

    Does this mean if someone sneaks up behind you and wallops you in the head with a hockey stick, you'll be fine?

    Not that I was planning on doing any sneaking around.

    And I don't even own a hockey stick.

  12. Well, Michelle a turning helmet does two things, 1) it protects your lungs from the fines. Many types of wood are poisonous, like Walnut for example. Wood dust can cause all kinds of problems over time, if you breath in a enough of it. The air shield is a positive pressure mask, powered by a battery driven fan and filter set. In this case the filters are in the top of the helmet.

    And 2) To protect your face from flying debris. I've been hit several times, twice now I've damned near broken ribs when a piece came apart on the lathe. Now that I'm turning very large pieces on the Delta, the danger level is much higher. Getting hit in the chest is one thing, getting hit in the face is another.

  13. The only thing I feel I can do whilst in the middle of a migraine is get away from light. Sometimes a bath (in the dark) helps, but I don't know if it helps as much as lying under the covers.

    Aleve helps slightly. Sometimes.

    No herbal or folk remedy I've ever tried has ever been anything above worthless. Time and real medicine are what's needed, and herbalists cannot provide either.

    Fortunately, I only get them once a month, down from twice a week (when I worked at a really hatefully stressful newspaper--stress appears to be a huge component of mine).

  14. Just wanted to state one last thing about herbalism...mainly for Scott.

    Keep in mind that a vast quantity of the medicine used today is actually based upon those folk medicines your giving a bad rap.

    I just felt that needed to be pointed out, not claiming there isn't complete crap out there, just stating the facts.

  15. Joe, if any herbal med was in any way effective against my migraines, I'd be a lifetime subscriber.

    But instead it's like drinking miniscule amounts of water or eating cardboard. Perhaps if folk remedies were rather more like modern medicine (and less like folk remedies), there might be something to it, but in my experience, there isn't.

    I suspect "based on" in this case means the pharmaceutical science based on folk remedies moved on, and the folk remedies... didn't.


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