Friday, January 6, 2012
Snap of Synapse
When I was a kid, my maternal grandfather usually spent about 6 months of the year at our house. I have posted about him before with some old photos of his sporting pursuits....and the passing of sportsman's wisdom from him to me.
What brings him to mind today is a recent mental flash I had just before Christmas. I recently purchased a pair of Bean Boots as pictured above...the zip front model with a wool liner. They are "vintage" but in excellent shape. After cleaning the liner, I went to wear them and the zipper on both boots was a bit sluggish and stuck.
I went to the dining room and grabbed a candle nub from one of the candlesticks...then proceeded to rub the candle-bottom on both zippers. The zippers now operate as if brand new and whiz up and down with a effortless pull.
I then stopped and reflected...where the Hell did this trick come from...and immediately had an image of Granddad showing me to use a candle nub to make the zipper on some snow boots work properly one morning as I dressed to go sledding. That shred of information was lurking deep in the cranial archives and just surfaced when the time was appropriate.
I had a similar synaptic surfacing several years ago when fly-fishing in the Adirondacks. My buddy Glenn and I were in a Guideboat on Lake Colby at the evening rise. I was just out of Law-School and had not had time to fly-fish in several years.When I took the rod from it's case....I rubbed the metal tipped bottom of the top half of the rod in my scalp before connecting the two pieces. Glenn asked what the Hell that manoeuvre was all about and I really was not conscious of having done it. Then I remembered fishing with my Grandfather in Pacanac lake and his instruction that each time you put your rod together you first rub the one end in your scalp so a bit of oil will lube the piece and prevent the rod sticking together when you break down for casing.
Grandad taught me many things about hunting and fishing...obviously some that I remember clearly and some,like candle-nubs and scalp oil, that only percolate to cognition when the circumstances dictate.