Bring Out Your Ideas and Move Them On #32 #cong18


I have very often found myself thinking about an idea and removing the more extreme parts of it to make it more presentable. Then finding when I explain it to someone, they agree with me, and also the parts I had toned down . Of course I agree with them, but come away thinking, “Damn, I wasn’t radical enough. The idea was fine the first time, and I could have gone even further”.

The problem is not shortage of ideas; it is getting them out into circulation. And leave space for the next idea to come forward.

4 Key Takeaways:

  1. Dont water down your ideas
  2. Extreme can be positive
  3. Leave space for the next idea
  4. Express your ideas

About Conor O'Brien:

I come from a tradition of cooperative and local involvement and has always been involved in community and farming organisations. I am now a director of Mitchelstown Credit Union; involved with a local group using walks on the Knockmealdowns and the Galtees to build the community, and develop it; and with a friend who wants to develop a food-growing low cost of living system so that a person with a project is not weighed with unsustainable living costs.

Contacting Conor O'Brien:

You can contact Conor by email or follow him on Twitter.

By Conor O’Brien.

I have a friend Seamus Duggan, retired now, who was the local mechanic cum blacksmith. Not the blacksmith with a forge, that time was well gone, but with the electric arc welder. In arc welding the two bit’s of iron are connected to the negative pole of the welder, while the positive pole held a special rod that melted in the electric arc produced when it was held over the negative iron. The temperature of the arc was high enough to melt the pieces of metal and the rod for that second in that spot until one moved it on, leaving the molten magma to cool and fuse the two metals together.

Seamus was a good mechanic, but he was gifted with the welder, a brute of a green Essex machine. Hard work, but eased with a few, or more, pints in the pub across the way. The view was that he could calibrate his intake so that the following morning the drink induced shake in his hands had the correct waviness for a few hours welding until his head regained it’s composure.
One evening during silage time Mick O’Brien came on towing a tractor that had broken the half-shaft in the back axle. Of course the silage took precedence over the pub. Seamus went at it, got the cab lifted enough to get at that side of the tractor, wheel off, hub off, and pulled out the broken side of the half-shaft hoping that the break was up close and he could grip the remainder. This time, no; the shaft was broken just at the splines, way deep inside. The whole back axle would have to be stripped; an all-nighter. He went and got the half-shaft out of a scrap tractor out the back. The back axle was still looking at him, so he sat down on the wheel and lit a cigarette, and another when Marie brought out a cup of tea to him. The broken stub was going nowhere.

Just as he got up, he thought of the welder. He had never heard of it being done, but a bad welder is always getting the welding rod stuck in the cooling magma especially on cold metal; and a welding rod would be long enough to reach the stub. Could he do it deliberately?
He practiced a bit on the broken shaft until he had got the right technique of jamming the rod on to it and flicking the power on and off fast enough to make the magma, but only enough to stick the rod. Then he carefully pushed the rod onto the stub, flicked the power and Halleluiah, the rod stuck to the stub. A tap on the stub to break any fusing to the gears, a gentle easing and out it came. Job done. The whole thing was back together in forty five minutes.

I was over in the pub that night. We all knew about the tractor and none of us were expecting to see Seamus, so when he came in, water still dripping off his hair from a quick wash and a smile on his face we knew something had happened.
We got the story and more like it; there were acres and fields cut for silage that night, machines broken and fixed, reputations made and unmade.

Later when the place quietened and Seamus and I were chatting, he turned to me and said something I will always remember. “Conor,” he said, “There’s no point in being crazy if you cannot show it”. It was the smartest thing said that night.
He is right; bring out your ideas and move them on.

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