Monday, August 16, 2010

Monday Memories—The Boys’ Club

The front door of Calvin’s shop, otherwise known as The Boys’ Club

The Boys’ Club has a few unspoken rules, the first one being no talking. The men can sit for hours out in the shop sanding, measuring, and nailing without saying a word.

Another unspoken rule is women are allowed to make brief visits, but they are not allowed to organize the tools or comment on the clutter.   They are allowed to take pictures only if they do not interfere with the work.

Man-food like jerky, seeds, and Pepsi are allowed in The Boys’ Club, but you won’t find even one square of chocolate.

The Boys’ Club may serve as a quail egg hatchery, gun club, or furniture factory, but it should never be confused with a repair shop. Broken chairs, tables, and lawnmowers will rot and return to Mother Earth before they will be fixed in The Boys’ Club.

Spiders, dogs, and mice are welcome in The Boys’ Club, but flies are not.

The Boys’ Club draws men from near and far, young and old.

The Boys' Club has special properties. It turns raw material into something beautiful.

Calvin turns out many wonders, all crafted in The Boys’ Club. I’ve shown you many of the things through the years –at least five cedar chests, a jelly cupboard, dozens of long-bows, a dozen black-powder guns, two fireplace mantels, a massive butcher block, frames – and they are beautiful. The craftsmanship is exceedingly fine. Last week Calvin, Ray, and Abe made perhaps the finest thing The Boys’ Club has ever produced, Clara’s casket.

Abe, Calvin, Ray

After the men finished their work, I made a little pad and pillow from soft pink fabric to put in the bottom of it for Clara to rest on. 



Making Clara's casket was a sweet experience.  I don’t know what we’d do without The Boys’ Club. It’s a place for men to be men and for grown men to cry.  It's a perfect place to take something raw and make it into something beautiful.

19 comments:

Ande Payne said...

Oh that was a beautiful post Mamma. I love the Boy's Club and am so glad it makes so many people happy and better.

Michelle said...

what a touching post and a special way for you all to be part of Clara's memory.

Julie said...

What a beautiful piece and a beautiful way for the boy's club to contribute to Clara's memory. Well done.

Jill said...

What a sweet, personal project for The Boy's Club. I'm sure this was one of those times when the no talking rule didn't need to be enforced.

Nikki said...

How wonderful! I have goosebumps and tears at the same time.

Barb said...

I'm so glad that Abe was able to return home and be with his family at this time.

Elizabeth said...

So sorry for your loss, thank you for sharing this tender miracle.

Cali said...

Mom,

Without detracting from the true meaning of the post, I'd like to remind you that I was the first and only girl to take on the task of cleaning the shop out. I got all but one corner done one Christmas break and dad says he STILL yells my name with swear words when he can't find something. If it looked like junk, I loaded it in the back of the pick-up and hauled it to the dump myself. I still can't believe I did that (tried to clean up the shop)... how gutsy and stupid. It was a mess again by March.

That's all I wanted to remind you of,

Cali

Lucy said...

What a wonderful gift to create something with so much love.

Neighbor Jane Payne said...

Oh Cali. You make me laugh. Yes, yes, I well remember your gift to clean it up and we all still hear about your dad not being able to find things still. Only you would take on the task of bringing order to The Boys' Club.

Deanna/Mimi said...

As I saw yesterday's post on the touching scene of Abe and Grace with baby Clara in her casket...I thought at the time that it must have been made by Grandpa Calvin. What a beautiful gift he gave to Clara and to all the family. Today's post was evidence of my thinking. Your post was touching and gave the men of your family a chance to be recognized for their good works at this time and also for the way they turned their grief into something beautiful for the Clara and her father Abe and mother Grace. Beautiful and eternal. Thank you for sharing

Chandra said...

I thought that Clara's casket looked like Calvin's work. Nice to see that Abe and Ray had a hand it it also. It was beautiful. What a bonding experience for the boy's club. Your whole family has taught us all so much these past few days. Thank you.

Rachel said...

What a perfect gift for Clara!

Tiffany Fackrell said...

That is a beautiful piece of work for a beautiful baby girl.

Derek-Jenny-Kaitlynd-Ethan-Dylan said...

It was so beautiful. Thanks to the Boys Club.

Tyler - Danielle - Emree said...

You are all amazing at taking things that appear normal and making them into extraordinary things. We wish we could have been there. We love you.

michelle said...

So beautiful, Jane. Baby caskets are almost unbearably sad to me. Especially with fathers carrying them. I love that the men in the Boys' Club were able to make her (body) a beautiful resting place.

Marie said...

So, so glad Abe got to come home! What a comfort to all.

Emma J said...

This is so good on so many levels.