Genios: A collaborative approach … aka together making things that work
I don’t know about you but I like it a lot when something just simply works. I also have something in my genetic code from my Dad, I guess, as he was an electronics engineer and musician and somewhere out of this I have a genuine fascination for watching things and figuring out how they work and especially when they do something really well. People put labels on this like OCD but I don’t care what it means, I like being part of the equation at the end of it, being after the equals sign: = me having something clever and innovative and my part is appreciating how and why they did it and be happy for them and me. Like, WOW you did all that and it equals I get something that’s cool and WORKS!!
Graham must have the same DNA and, between us, we also like to do a bit of assembling and creative innovating and both have “ideas”.
For instance, Graham has lots of hats/caps and had been searching for a hat stand for years and about a year ago saw a miniature windmill in a magazine – about 1.5 metres high – and instantly wanted to get it as a hat stand. We have a lot of stuff on our floors which I have to clean around and I think about how I could reduce it but I love the memories we have together of what he has brought into our lives: 1860’s antique bottles, an easel for his photos, French-style painted pitchers with lilac Agapanthus flowers, a tall glass vase with prehistoric shells, etc so every time the windmill idea came up I asked: please, no more!!
Then I bought another cute hat and jokingly said: Ha, ha maybe we need the windmill? Graham leapt out of his chair and said YES, YES, YES!! We had to wait a couple of weeks and finally picked it up and there was “some assembly required”. Yeah, right! So Saturday afternoon Graham and I built from scratch our very own windmill. It took one and a half hours and we did it together – I won’t say it was all fun – about 99% – especially when we got a couple of bits upside down and had to reverse them but Graham is marvey and we laughed lots as we both enjoy being engineers, sharing my screwdrivers and stalking around looking super intense. (Yes, I do have my own toolkit with hammers and all that kinda stuff). There were many, MANY, MANY pieces (how many cross struts does a windmill need??!!!! – 88 pieces including 41 sets of nuts and bolts). We could put it in our garden if we had one and if we had a pipe and pump on it going into the ground it would actually work but for now it’s our hat stand. We plan to sneak it onto our balcony and check out how fast it goes and if the tail swings around – AWESOME. Graham is sooo funni.
I asked Graham the “why a windmill” question? He thought about it and said it’s built exactly like the one on their farm he used to climb with his Uncle Stan to fix the pump and he had to watch out if the wind changed so the tail didn’t hit him in the head!! He liked watching nature with man’s creation spinning and swinging around in the wind. A great boyhood memory.
I’ve shared our adventure with some wonderful pals I was working with recently and they laughed heaps – thought we were pretty hilarious. I like to share so people laugh and enjoy their day through a smile.
We also bought a front loading washing machine and I would sneak in with a torch and check out the washing go around and up and down and drop it from the top. It has six different ways it moves the clothes around, saves power and water and sings a happy song at the end. I love how it does what it does. I did a mini demo dance for Graham waving my arms and singing a song which he thought was pretty funny – cheering him up after a difficult day at work.
I like to think of my co-lifers and life as being a collaborative event/journey and I’m using a new word “genios” instead of genius now. A description of genius is: instinctive and extraordinary imaginative, creative or inventive capacity; person having this.
Therefore, “genios” is my plural for a bunch of us or maybe only 2 working together collaboratively to do something “way cool”. Like building a windmill – it’s useful, creative and definitely works and is probably a unique hat stand or being with Graham when he takes a photo of light shining through a street lamp from his unique angle/perspective to go with my latest story – an intersection – collaboration.
I met a few other genios’ this week while on a broken light cover fix-it mission – one lady referred me to another lady who insisted on giving me a spare lookalike part for free and the guys x 4 at the hardware store. No 1 found me a perfect fit metal washer – not easy, No 2 checked his stores for alternates and the three of us had a discussion of what next/how it could work and sent me on to No 3 “Lucky” who worked on the next step and then No 4 advised on the best glue. Pure genios – thank you guys.
Why do I talk about all this? ‘Cause people like to tell us how people are no good, how nobody helps each other and everybody is out for themselves. Well, I refuse to believe or agree with this. Yes, some people are yukky but my experience is people are, for the most part, wanting to help each other and sometimes life is so full of what is expected of them and what they expect from themselves they forget who they really are both to themselves and to the people who come their way.
Maybe the gift every day is to look inside, trust our instincts and use the power of our own and others: instinctive and extraordinary imaginative, creative and inventive capacity and be the pure “genios” we are created to be.
Just noticed Graham is back in the DIY magazine creatively thinking up our next adventure no doubt!