Anakana Schofield – Author of Bina, Martin John and Malarky

Low-pressure unison

There is another low-pressure system coming in that’s provoking yet another curious weather situation. Today, late in the day, wind, cold freezing wind with a snowfall warning. It looks like the snow will be slush but the combination of wind and nearly snow coldness was unusual for us.

The clouds hung low in that pre-snow mentality they possess.

The weather redolent of a shift and around us the talk is of a teachers strike and  this morning’s news of the death of Jim Green, (RIP), a long-term poverty activist and former City Councillor was written all over those sad, low clouds today. A strange unison between weather and change and sadness out there.


A unity that failed to occur today however was the chicken soup I decided to make (Asian style) before the misguided notion overtook me to hurl four lamb sausages into it. I am still several hours later wondering what possessed me to do such a thing.

Answers on a post-card to ….


A major woodwork undertaking that should not have been undertaken but God loves an ambitious palm-sanding woman, with her dressmaking measuring tape and her dremmel. An extraordinary sized shelf has resulted. I think a very spacious, high-class shoe rack is the outcome, which needs to have a back to stabilize itself. My first experiment with mad-sized lumps of plywood from scratch. It looks better than it touches. It touches, well, wobbly. Lesson learned= measure the space into which the intended shelf will dwell.

I am upping the woodwork ante! I am making a 7-foot-table. Except there’s already a minor problem. I may have miscalculated the legs as it’s looking like a fairly stumpy affair. However, and this is the big however, I am taking my ambition to a new height and attempting to build a box for the table frame.

How else can you build a table? I hear you ask. Well I was going to fling my hook at it and resort to simple L brackets to attach the legs, but when faced with the bendy looking 79 cent L bracket and my 7 foot lumber, well the lumber pleaded not to spend its life wiggling at the hips.

How and ever the 64cm height measurement may be another of my impeded numerical readings.

Then there’s the challenge of building it in the 100 sq foot we inhabit.


At the hardware shop I compared scars with two very damaged males.

One had essentially lost the use of his little finger, the other had sliced across the tendon in his thumb. My saw decorated forefinger was well but the daisy among these hardcore injuries. The thumb man, a carpenter, had faired much better than the little finger man. The thumb man had acquired his damage in his work, a story about some form of knife that slipped while he was (insert vague up and down motions). The little finger man severed his tendon he said from glass. I assumed it must be some industrial sized piece of glass he had been cutting. Mais non, as we traded stories, he was in fact holding an ordinary household glass which took and shattered in his hand. Astonishing damage the average glass can do. I am sworn off them.


David Lynch Weather Forecaster

I hope if, as rumoured, David Lynch is retiring as a film maker he will embrace his second calling that of Weather Forecaster. Mr Lynch is one of my favourite weather forecasters. He forecasts reliably from a single cigarette smoke cloud and  a cup of coffee, staring out the window. He only discusses the weather in Los Angeles and could expand a bit up the coast here without cluttering matters up.

Mr Lynch is also a formidable woodworker. Sometimes he posts snaps of his projects on Twitter. A bunch of how to make cupboards with no fancy tools videos on youtube would also be another welcome contribution to this second floor enclave.  My current how to make cupboards viewing consists of a headless Texan who has way too many tools, but affectionately talks about making cupboards for his “man cave”.  (Thankfully it’s not his Bat Cave).

Winter gardening has proved an abject disaster.  This is a disappointing, but one must accept the limits of 2nd floor minimal space horticulture. I saw one of my favourite gardeners today out on the road ‘The Flower Man’ I call him. He’s besotted with les fleurs and he only grows flowers. I asked after his seedling plans and we had a brief exchange on the prospect of recommencing at the garden.

Now I’ve to turn my attention to building some kind of raised platform-ish seedling table, so that my seeds do not meet the same misfortune, as the late season batch did last year. This means I have to raise the greenhouse up, above the level of the balcony, which will probably draw attention and may lead to a “letter of chastisement”. The space is very limited out there but I do have this wild notion of raising the plastic and height to about 5’0ft.

After the sign making, which involved brackets (gasp) and the shelf building — how difficult can a table be!

The other day at the supermarche I was reading a magazine called Wood or Woodworking. Note there was only one copy remaining so it’s more popular than the gossip ones it is housed with. The front cover showed an elaborate buffet board with drawers and doors and shelves and cupboards beneath. “If you can build a box you can build this unit” the text boasted. I folded it up and replaced it, since I cannot build a box … yet.

I will say that woodworking magazines and knitting magazines have something in common, a kind of unfathomable code, not unlike Lacan that it takes sustained effort to comprehend and I am not sure I have the necessary application for.