• Charity No. 19928 Phone No. 0818 900 800

  • How to read a tape measure

    A few days ago when I took out my tape to measure a length of timber, I could see that the tape measured somewhere just over seven and a half inches. I was reminded of advice given by family and friends to ‘measure twice and cut once’.  This is very good advice particularly when you are measuring in inches and placing an order in centimetres!  Nowadays if we are not sure of something we can always search out the information on the Internet, and for the fun of it I did a google search and up popped a video on ‘how to read a tape measure’, by the aptly named carpenter, Shane Foote.

    A Simple enough you’d think, as Shane describes in his video, when not too long ago, he had a man help him work on a house, who although was not a carpenter, actually had a PhD. Shane asked him to measure something for him and when he gave Shane back the measurement, it was just a complete gibberish string of numbers which made no sense whatsoever. He was stunned that this educated man simply did not know how to read a tape measure.

    Shane goes on to say, that since then, he has gone on to meet a large number of people, who probably should know how to read a tape measure, but don’t. So I shouldn’t have been too surprised to see that Shane’s video had gone viral and has reached almost half a million hits on youtube, where he goes into precise detail as to how to read a tape measure. Shane happened to remind me of Chris, a family friend who sadly passed away last week. Chris worked in the building trade in England for many years and returned home to Ireland to retire. At his funeral the Priest warmly described Chris as ‘the man you’d google before google was invented’ because of his great wealth of knowledge, attention to detail and precise instruction of ‘how to do’ almost anything.

    Chris is not unlike the man from Donegal, who was mentioned on RTE’s, The Sean O’Rourke Show, another Craftsman who retired from the UK and now an active and valued member of The Monaghan Men’s Shed. In the light of President Michael D. Higgins’s visit to the UK this week, which highlighted and celebrated the contribution Irish emigrants have made there, the Men’s Sheds in Ireland can provide a place of warm welcome and belonging to the returning emigrant. It’s a place where stories can be told and retold over a pot of tea and where valuable skills learned at home and abroad can be shared to the benefit of its members and of the wider community. To hear more check out Monaghan’s Men’s Shed, on an RTE Radio: Podcast https://menssheds.ie2014/04/02/monaghan-mens-shed-on-rte-radio/