A tangled web
Things seem a little slow around our house nowadays. Other than an occasional trip to the grocery store and a daily walk, my wife and I haven’t been anywhere and have no plans to go anywhere, at least until we get the proper dose of the COVID vaccine. When I talk to some of my friends who are taking similar precautions, I often get asked the question “What are you doing to keep busy?” Truthfully, I can’t say I’m bored. It seems I always find something to do and maintaining my outdoor equipment is one thing that keeps me occupied.
For example, I have a hang-on tree stand that is lightweight and very easy to install but, I had one problem with it. Some time ago, when I was younger and dumber, I removed the seat because I preferred to stand while bow hunting. In recent years however, I decided sitting was a better option. Not a problem, I thought. All I had to do was to reinstall the seat and I’d be able to use this stand again next season. Turns out it wasn’t going to be that easy.
The stand came with a thick, comfortable foam seat that was supported by nylon webbing. When I detached the seat, I detached the webbing from the frame as well. The problem I now faced was trying to decide how to reattach the webbing to the seat bracket. I’m not the brightest bulb on the tree when it comes to figuring out things like that, and my talent for thinking in the abstract rivals that of a second grader. I had no choice but to call in an expert. My wife is an excellent sewer and can make just about anything but, together we couldn’t figure out how the webbing was attached.
I always brag that I have friends in low places and so, I lugged the stand down to the garage of an engineer friend who could fix just about anything. I explained the problem to him and he looked at me like I was a few French fries short of a Happy Meal. “I don’t believe you can’t figure that out,” he said with some distain. An hour later I had the stand back in my truck with my pride intact and the webbing still unattached. “That webbing must be from another stand,” my know-it-all friend said as I was leaving. At least now I knew I wasn’t as dumb as I thought.
Now, I was getting agitated about the situation. There had to be a solution. After all it was only a few inches of nylon webbing that had to be reattached, but so far no one was able to figure out how to do it. Enter my wife once again. This time she examined the webbing more closely and said, “Looks like it there was a loop here and the stitching pulled out. I can fix that.”
“Ok, if you say so,” I commented with little enthusiasm that would remedy my problem.
I was wrong. She sewed the webbing so that both sides resembled each other, but we still couldn’t figure out how the webbing was attached to support the foam seat. This is when Lady Luck showed up.
That afternoon I was reviewing some photos for a feature I was working on when I came upon a folder that said, “Fall Hunting Scenes.” Thinking one of the photos would be suitable for the article, I opened the folder and there they were. Six old photos of my stand in place with the seat and the webbing attached. What luck!
I called my wife and showed her the photos and together we quickly figured out how to weave the webbing around the stand’s frame and to reattach the seat. Looking at the finished product it seems that a third grader could do it but, as far as I’m concerned, it’s mission accomplished! All it took was a day of my time, a perceptive wife, some luck, old photos and a seven mile ride to my friend’s house to get it done.
When trying to keep busy I haven’t resorted to smoking cigarettes and watching Captain Kangaroo yet, but don’t tell me I have nothing to do.