You need to read less and think more!

This blog is about getting stoked and getting worthwhile things done. There is a sea of useless information bombarding you, and this is a desert island where you beach your boat and build a hut. There are also some clever little construction tricks to be presented.



Thursday, March 26, 2015

Tale chasing as art (an abstract digression).

I once heard that many professionals are like olympic tails-chasers. We improve our nutrition, get coaches, learn the newest techniques to go faster, be more effective, etc.. Some of us spin with astonishing speed. Others are beautiful in our spinning. Others are surprisingly effective at just catching their tale; showing skill and flexibility, they barely spin, and they are able to give themselves a nice bite on the base. We are all just chasing our tails, though.


This reality has weighed on me for years. I’m kind of OK with it. Truthfully, I have fun chasing my tail. I’m thankful for the freedom to do it (stray dogs don’t do it - their world is too dangerous).  I know I will die someday. So, I might as well make the most of this time. Most of all, there are frankly parts of my life I am less comfortable with than my tail-chasing exercises. We seem to be built for pursuit of some sort. The truest pursuit may be spiritual, but to assume that one cannot be reached by those forces outside of a specific bodily position seems demeaning to said forces. I feel like my dharma now is to just go. I hope I am doing it right.

Thank you for reading.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

101 stuff

About Shiny Concrete.

There are two ways to make concrete shiny: mechanically and topically. Mechanical polishing is more durable, easier to maintain, and arguably prettier when the colors are to be muted. 

Concrete that is made shiny by a material on top (sealed or coated), will be very stain resistant, but prone to scratches and scuffs. Solvent based sealers are OK outside as the solvent melts the scratches, and the smell goes away quickly. However, these floors inside are a bad idea.

That’s right - the industry standard for stained concrete interior flooring (sealed or coated; maintained with mop-on floor finish) is a bad idea. It’s dumb because some day it will all have to come off and get re-done, and in a finished space, that is a mess.  There is a third option to consider, though. 

Paste wax richens color like nothing else, and is very easy to re-apply. Because it goes into the concrete (rather than just on top), owners can go years (usually 3-5) before re-waxing. Some of the wax stays on top, and will buff extra shiny at first, but this is not the point of the finish. These floors wear in like unwashed jeans: They start off stiff. Then they get a line in them. They work into a very comfortable and attractive color and texture over time (arguably less “sharp looking”, but attractive). 

So, the point is some “shiny” is more sustainable than others. Some is worth it (full time janitorial staff at schools, airports, malls, etc.). Some is not (over-application of floor finish in homes). For interior floors, we install diamond polished and paste wax because we know concrete should wear like blue-jeans.

Thank you for reading.