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Episode 28: Part 1 of “Black Myrtle’s Glory

“‘How fond she is of finding morals in things’ Alice thought to herself.”

L. Carroll     “The Mock Turtle’s Story”

Mock Turtle

Alex had his shaper running like a Swiss watch

(albeit a little faster).

He had clamped a large piece of steel

in the shaper’s vise.

The tool steel

cutting bit

was sharp,

and he had

his cutting

oil bucket

and brush

ready at



The bit was locked in a floating head.

On the forward stroke the head

locked in place and the bit

ripped into the steel



On the return stroke the head floated up

and the bit glided smoothly backward.


Rip-ka-chunk – -Rip-ka-chunk.


Forward and back, forward and back.

Nothing stopped the shaper.

On each forward stroke

the bit cut into the work

a quarter inch deep.

The metal chip

curly-cued up

in front of

the bit and




As the bit finished its cut the chip flew

into the air with the blue smoke

of cutting oil trailing behind it.

One or two chips landed on

Alex’s bare arm.

Curly snake-like

burns were to

remain for




And you, dear reader, can also see Alex’s metal shaper RIGHT HERE if you so wish

Alex copyright