Multitasking Makes It Happen

One of my resolutions for this year is to get back into working with the sword. The challenge is that I don’t have any good place to practice. I need an open space, and preferably one tall enough that I can swing a sword.

And longswords are a bit… long.

Seriously, the way this photo was taken, the sword looks huge. It's long, but not that long.
Seriously, the way this photo was taken, the sword looks huge. It’s long, but not that long.

During the warm months, I can go outside to do this, but in the winter (like today when it’s a balmy 25°F outside) that’s not a really great option. I can’t practice in my house, because the ceilings are at best 8 feet tall.

So, what do I do?

Well, the lab I manage is big and open. It has lofty ceilings. And…. there are days when I spend hours in there turning a knob every 40 seconds.

You can do an amazing amount of sword work in 40-second increments.

A marvelous practice space.
A marvelous practice space.

I’ve laid out a couple of lines for footwork, brought in a wooden longsword waster and a wooden practice foil (ok, it’s a dowel with a guard), and can now practice at work if I need to.

This has actually been a great boon, as nearly every day I spend at least a half hour in the lab, turning knobs and adjusting things. It’s wonderful to be able to take advantage of the short pauses I get to work on my swordsmanship (and it needs work, trust me).

Of course, multitasking doesn’t work in every situation, but in this case it does. I do what I’m getting paid to do and simultaneously accomplish a small part of a larger goal. Mission accomplished.

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