Commonsense Common Sense

Why is common sense uncommon? There is a brain chemical, anandamide, (N-arachidonoylethanolamide!) that helps us clear the clutter in our brains. It is sometimes called the bliss molecule, because it is the chemical eraser that allows us to tolerate situations by forgetting past trauma. Mostly. But it seems to allow us to forget everything else. Experience. This is largely why we makes plans and write down specifications. Otherwise we forget to install the dryer vent until after the sheetrock is on. What to do today?

  1. Keep the plans and specifications available on the jobsite. A large book of specifications is easy to throw in the back of the truck cab, never seeing the light of day until there is an issue. Oh, and look at them.
  2. Don’t assume that copying something you saw happening on a job five years ago, or an idea from last night’s news should be adopted as standard operating procedure. I saw two carpenters debate whether sheet of 2″x2’x8′ styrofoam should be installed horizontally or vertically for an hour because 60 minutes had shown how two sheets set up to form an eight foot chimney could be lit with a single match, and therefore the horizontal configuration is “safer”, (even though the stacked courses amount to eight feet vertically!)
  3. Meet. Never for longer than an hour. Make it an open forum, where the only dumb questions are the ones which were not asked. Peace.
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