Perfect is the Enemy of Started

We could blame the lack of progress on my outdoor oven on the seasons – sure I haven’t been out there in the mud while it rains constantly for 3 months and is also uncomfortably cold.

But it’s not just that. Some of it was indecision – exactly how big do I want this oven to be?

And when I went to buy my first round of supplies, I realized there was a lot more to my reluctance.

I don’t know how to do this. Like, at ALL. Home Depot turns out to be a special land of imposter syndrome – you walk up “I’m going to buy 18 cinder blocks and load them in my ancient car” and then you find the right area, figure out how to get one of the big carts and realize – 18 is a LOT of cinder blocks.

But the book says to try to make the base a reasonable height to work from! and also to make it almost 4 foot square to support a 22″ diameter oven interior! Just trying to do the right thing!

But the book also says to make a mess and do some trial runs. It suggests making a tiny clay oven just to get a feel for the clay and how to work with it. It says you can opt out of making rain protection and just patch it up as it falls apart.

I’m having a hard time not trying to do it all perfectly on the first try. I want a plan and reassurances, but it turns out that I’m not getting so much of that with this project. I knew this would be a stretch of my make-it skills, but I didn’t realize how much. Sewing never required this many pounds of supplies!

I bought 8 cinder blocks, and a couple of landscaping stones (in a perfect world, I would face the exterior with landscaping blocks so it’s not hideous. perfect is insidious.) That was as much as I could get on the flat cart, and nearly as much as my car would reasonably hold (there was more space, but I could feel the weight while driving.)

I felt so dumb in the store – moving cinder blocks with no gloves, having to figure out how to get a flat cart. I both don’t know what I’m doing and don’t really need the kind of help that a salesperson can give. And wow there are a lot of people at the hardware store on a sunny weekend day.

Anyway, I started

2017-03-05 09.36.31

Not pictured: the terra cotta plant saucers that I had put out to mark the approximate spot were completely filled with slugs when I turned them over. Nature is gross.

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