posted by Joe Anaya on January 9th, 2012

Growing up, my father was pretty handy around the house. He could fix all types of things, plumbing, electrical, carpentry. My mother would always force me to go hang out with him and “learn something.” Despite my best efforts, I actually did learn some things. In fact enough things, that I’m supremely confident at taking things apart, and more importantly because of my Dad’s teachings, I’m fairly competent at fixing things and putting them back together.

One thing I learned was that my dad loved tools. He had a shed full of tools. We would tease him about how many tools he owned. Many of them only did one thing that he needed one time. But he would always say, “Use the right tool for the job.” “Yeah, sure dad,” was usually my reply.

And then I bought a house.

Anybody who owns a house knows, the first few weeks in a new house, you can wear out a path to the nearest hardware store. Updating light switches, changing faucets, etc. are all fairly typical chores, and each was handled easily by the tools in my toolbox. Occasionally, we (and by “we” I mean “my wife”) would be motivated to take on a bigger job: lay hardwood floors, reroute the sprinkler system, etc. And each time I’d get to the part of the job where I’d struggle with a task. I’d tinker with different tools I had in my box. I tried the crow bar, then the pry bar, then a large flat-head screwdriver, then the screwdriver with the pry bar. I had some success but did a little damage to the pieces I was working on and just as importantly it took me twice as long. Inevitably, I’d get up and get my keys to drive to the hardware store. My wife would ask why I can’t just use a bigger screwdriver. Rather than go through the explanation of all that I’ve tried, I simply reply, “I need the right tool for the job.” With the right tool in hand, I complete the job quickly and easily. Thanks, Dad, for giving me the confidence to just go out and buy a new tool I’ll only use once.

File Under King of the Castle