Wednesday, March 5, 2014

By the Pound

I've been trying to be of assistance to the Amazing Cam, but my limits are extensive.  I can't stand on ladders, paint at night, or do any lifting or holding stuff over my head.  My main skills are running errands to Lowes, sweeping up debris, and handing him stuff.

On the farm, we learned to anticipate when to hand somebody something.  I'm still fairly good at it but am not always sure what's needed, so I just hang out and try not to stand in the way too much.  Yesterday I managed to cut a few small pieces of sheetrock to go around the window sills and it gave me a real rush.

We got chatting about nails.  He mentioned that a few of the longer nails he was using came from his grandpa's house.  I thought maybe they had pulled them out of somewhere to recycle them but he was talking about nails his grandpa had stored at his house.  They were purchased back in the day when you walked into a hardware store, went to the nail bin, spun it around til you found the right size pile of nails, shoved in a big metal scoop (sort of a large version of the bulk food scoops in the grocery store), loaded up what you needed in a paper sack, and took them to the cashier who weighed them and charged you by the pound.  It's one of those pleasures you didn't know you missed til you were reminded of it.  I can feel the scoop in my hand and hear the crunch of nails in my mind's eye right now even.  I'm not sure if the price per pound stayed the same for any size or was like the price of different types of apples at the grocery store.  Pauline might remember, or maybe Bill.

My dad had a cubbie box right behind the door of his shed where he kept his sorted nails.  A friend of mine saw that once and about fell over in amazement. It never occurred to us that nails wouldn't have their own little compartment separate from other-sized nails.  It wouldn't surprise me if some of Dad's nail were still in their little homes.  Dad would love Cameron.

I've heard that Ace Hardware still has open bins of nails for sale.  I'm going to go check that out.


  1. Our local Hunter Lumber has these very bins. I go there to get stuff for Cub Scouts.