My Uncle

Been a tough week here at Eveoganda HQ, real life rears its ugly head in many ways and then two days ago I got the news that one of my Uncles had passed away. I don't normally mention much about RL events here on the blog, since it is supposed to be about Eve, but this one actually does have a correlation. Hang with me if you'd like to find out how.

My Uncle was an extremely private person, he wasn't much for hanging out, showing up for family events, or coming over to visit. I found out this week that he wasn't much for going to the Doctors either, the man was in his early seventies and hadn't been to a Doctor since he was 20 years old. He was one of the toughest men that I have ever known. We weren't close, I probably haven't seen him more than a few times in the last fifteen or twenty years. But for two Summers, back when I was a struggling College student, we worked together.

I admire true craftsmen, I always have. My own Father is one of those. It runs in both sides of my family. I like to think that in some ways, I have continued that tradition. Although my contribution being more digital than reality. But there are times when I get my hands dirty, working around the house, fixing my car, building projects with my boys. And in those times I think about those that taught me. And I often think about those two Summers.

Another Uncle of mine owned a concrete business, pouring driveways, sidewalks, pre-fabbed pipes, etc. General contractor with a concrete specialty. He did a little of everything. The Uncle that passed away this week was the Foreman. It was a natural job for a young man during the Summer. It paid very, very well. But it was back-breaking manual labor, as an un-skilled laborer. But in those days I loved physical labor, the mindless repetitive nature and the great tans you'd get from working in the sun outside all day.

And yes, I'm getting to the Eve part. Be patient. 

My Uncle was a genius when it came to working with concrete. The stuff that people used levels for, he could do by eye alone. I've never seen anyone create patterns, or dry brush the surface, or measure out the frames, the way he could do it. He took great pride in the finished product. And, more importantly, he took pride in showing a snot-nosed kid how it was done. And while I would rarely, although sometimes, directly use that knowledge in my adult life. The lessons I use every single day. Patience, pride and professionalism. Doing a job right the first time and doing it better than anyone else.

Eve is a craft. There is a beauty to it, a repetition of task, an art, but underneath it all it is a craft. And it involves space-craft. There is a right way and a wrong way, but in the middle there are lots of mediocre ways. Half-assed attempts and wrong-headed fits and stupid execution. To take your game to the next level, sometimes you need someone to show you the way. To take the time to teach, to show the why and why nots. To educate and illustrate.

I've had many Mentors along the way in this game. People who took the time to show a Newb how it was done. And while many of those lessons don't get used on a daily basis, especially the ones involving mining, I appreciate the knowledge all the same.

I'd like to thank those people. I never got the chance to thank my Uncle. I don't feel sad about that because it wouldn't have meant anything to him. It would've only embarrassed him. He didn't teach me as much as he shared his passion with me. And for that, he didn't need my thanks. He needed my respect.

To all the mentors out there, thank you. You have my respect.

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