For as long as I can remember I’ve been fascinated by the way everything around us works. I can still remember taking a cassette deck apart at age 8. My mother was displeased about it. Granted it had probably something to do with the fact I had left the plug in while I happily poked around with my screwdriver in the exposed parts. But in the mind of an 8 year old there was no room to think about something as trivial as taking the power off. I only had eyes for the way the network of wheels distributed the tape alongside the head, which magically transferred a sound to the speakers.
Of course I quickly learned there were a few safety measurements one had to take when tinkering about. I also learned other things, such as that there were multiple kinds of screwdrivers, a different one for every slot shape. Trust me, that knowledge comes in handy when you are a 9 year old trying to loosen a Torx screw with a Phillips screwdriver. I learned that glue sticks don’t glue wood, watches contain many small parts and teachers don’t appreciate you taking apart light switches. By the time I was 12 I was probably the most unwanted kid in the neighborhood, but I did know how to do simple repairs and had developed a taste for learning more.
Till this day it somehow surprises people when I repair a computer as easily as I sew a button on my shirt. I’m not sure if this is because I’m a woman or because it’s still rare for people to learn a whole range of skills instead of just a few. I do know, what I can do you can do too. So learn something, go out there and do something new. Yes the first spoon you carve will look like shit, the first tire you patch won’t last a day and the first time you repair your tape deck will cause you to nearly electrocute yourself. But you will learn, you will get better and you will be a maker!