Friday, July 1, 2011

Building your own model

What endures in this hobby of building model airplanes are your feelings about your work and creations. You would not trade your models for anybody's, not even the best models ever made because they were made by someone else. To buy a model implies that I would have to trade my life for his which means living a whole new complex of pain and joy. One of those per lifetime is enough. I remember the late Joe Macay entering an old time rubber stick model w/a one bladed folder (help me here - it was designed by Charlie Werle) in the Concours d'Elegance at Muskogee. He showed it to me and as I looked at it he read my thoughts. (Joe was not a pretty builder but a person I will never forget. Joe let it all hang out and was a totally honest person). Joe said to me “I know that it will not win but to me it is the most beautiful model in the world because I gave it my all and I am entering it for myself."„ Later on, he flew it for me. It was a great performer and a Jonathan Livingston Seagull moment for both of us. As we struggled to get it out of a downwind tree, Joe said, “"Isn't this just great.”" I recognize being a builder of intermediate skills in all respects but I can narcissistically stare at a model that I have built over and over. This would never happen with a model that I did not build. I will admire another's model analytically trying to learn from it and be motivated by the craftsmanship. But it will never be mine at rest or in the air and my spirit will never soar with it.


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