Br’er Abbot’s Briarpatch

Feel the Heat

2015-07-14 20.35.43This morning everything was so clear in my mind. There was a gentle cooling breeze and the day was fresh and so was I. Not long after that, the heat hit and it’s been all downhill since. It’s amazing how working out in one hundred degree heat can rob you of your strength and even, in my case, my wits! I suppose I complicated matters by working with a torch burning somewhere right around three thousand degrees give or take a little. It’s a hot job I know but someone has to do it.

I have been trying to start my day by blowing glass in the cool hours of the morning, hours that had previously been reserved for riding Dominic, my Globe Vienna hybrid bike, on the bike trails of Fayetteville. Today as the temperature rose I pushed myself further and further into the heat of the day wanting to make one little glass hummingbird suncatcher after the next.

482302_577766918907903_300496875_nI have set up my glassblowing studio in the garage and while that offers some cover from the elements, heat is not one of them that it protects me from, in fact, it acts like a little roasting oven and I’m the turkey. With the torch, lights, and oxygen concentrator I create a generous amount of heat to contribute to global warming and I have yet to install and fire up my little woad blue kiln.

As I sat there making hummingbird after hummingbird and listening to the Carolina Chocolate Drops, my mind raced over my next few blog posts. It was like a manic attack of creativity. I was in the zone. I must have composed at least eight of my next one thousand word posts and indeed mapped out the rest of the year. The juices were flowing and if I had been set up to dictate from the torch I would have had it made.

But no and as a result, as the temperature continued to rise, the creativity started to sweat out of me…

As the heat rose my brained hazed over and my body complained until eventually, sometime this afternoon, I dripped into the house to the sanctuary of a darkened air conditioned room and drifted off to find refuge from a pounding headache.

As a child I was always out and about. It didn’t matter the weather conditions hot or cold, wet or dry, whatever. I was almost always off on my bike somewhere doing something. One summer day, not unlike today, I had spent the greater part of which pedaling around my hometown of Springfield Missouri. I didn’t have sense enough to come in from the heat as it never really bothered me, that is until it did.

On this particular one hundred five degree day when I must have been about nine, I had pushed myself just a little too hard. I remember being about a mile from home when I thought I might be getting into trouble physically. My head started to pound and then, even though I knew I was hot, I began to get the weirdest cold chills and start to shake. I made it home on my bike but at a price. I had a heat stroke.

I’ll never forget the pounding relentless headache and the odd sensations in my body, the dizziness and the nausea. I lay on a couch and didn’t move for hours that evening. I finally found the strength and presence to climb into bed and sleep it off. I haven’t been the same since. After that day I’ve been particularly sensitive to heat and never allow myself to in be a position of being too overheated. As a result when the thermometer reads 90 degrees I no longer ride my bike.

Today wasn’t nearly like the experience of my childhood. I knew I was getting to hot and I shut down. I was just a little taken back by how much it drained me mentally and creatively. I joked with a good friend of mine earlier in the morning about being in a manic creative state and I was just waiting for the crash. Well the crash came.

So now all of those outlines are a jumbled mess in my mind. My outline for the year all but a forgotten memory. This was not even my planned blog post of one thousand words today but I refuse to give into writer’s block so early in the game.

Samsung_Gear_LIveThis whole event has helped me to plan for better cataloging of my ideas, thoughts, and inspirations. It also offers the occasion for me to pursue a new piece of technology that I’ve been wanting for some time, a smart watch, and no not an Apple, gack. As I spend more and more time on the torch, a “smart watch” or “wrist computer” as a friend likes to call them, could be a very convenient wearable piece of technology for me. Of course Google glass could be even better but that’s a whole other level of technology for this one eyed person to embark upon.

It’s interesting. My first smart phone was a purchase to augment my glass business. My foray into bluetooth ear buds was also an aid to my glass work. Once again my glass work drives my need and new technology is explored. Fascinating.

Speaking of new technology and the glass business, I’ve also been thinking about investing in a GoPro camera with which to do videos for glassblowing lessons on my YouTube channel. I realize I could accomplish the same thing with my phone, laptop, or even my Samsung NX300 camera but somehow I feel the need for a more professional and or dedicated piece of technology to do the job. And then, it could simply be an excuse to buy a new toy but that’s okay too!

We’ll see. At the price of hummingbirds these days, ten dollars apiece, to purchase these new devices I would have to sell at least fifty of them retail and twice that amount wholesale. I better get back on the torch and stop spending time on this at the keyboard typing.