Jack the Force Amplifier
Once upon a time, behind a wooden barn door, underneath a wooden barn roof, inside a wooden barn, there labored a village smithy. The smith, a mighty man was he, with large and sinewy hands; and the muscles of his brawny arms were strong as iron bands. But this was Before Kent (call it B.K. for short).
Week in and week out, from morn till night, you could hear his bellows blow; you could hear him swing his heavy sledge, with measured beat and slow, like a sexton ringing the village bell, when the evening sun is slow. But it was before Jeff, too, and before he started swinging that baton around.
The children coming home from school would look in at the open door; they loved to see the flaming forge, and hear the bellows roar, and catch the burning sparks that fly like chaff from a threshing floor.
The smell of hot steel beaten upon the old anvil greeted every guest of that ancient wooden barn, and one day upon the anvil, a hammer was formed. That hammer was my father. My name is Jack. Jack Hammer. Some of my friends call me “Jack the Hammer,” as a sort of reminder of my more famous cousin Mack. Mack the Knife, that is. But I prefer to simply be called Jack, or else Hammer. Of course, I don’t mind being called Jack Hammer either. But that is usually what my mom calls me whenever I am late for supper. Which is not very often either, and no, my mom never calls me Late For Supper. But that is beside the point.
My mother is one of the cutest little Ball-Peen Hammers that you ever did see, and my father is a big, brawny Sledge Hammer. When I was little, I was thin as a rail, and for a while my dad thought that I would grow up to be a plain old claw hammer. When I was a teen, he swore I’d either be a wooden mallet or a rubber mallet, and sometimes thought I might be both. I guess I didn’t make much of an impact as a young man. Of course, my dad always wanted me to be just like him when I grew up, but things just didn’t go the way he planned. And since the men of our family have never been much more than force amplifiers anyway, he was not nearly as disappointed as we thought he might be when he found out that I worked best when attached to some mechanical device.
Of course, it took some time to figure out exactly what device I worked best with. Secretly, I tried to work with a Hammer Drill for a little while, but to no avail. I had plenty of kinetic energy stored up in my head to begin with, equal to the length D of the swing times the force f produced by the muscles of the arm and by gravity. But my size combined with the size of said Hammer Drill failed to deliver a punch effective enough to penetrate soggy drywall, and I quickly found myself replaced by a more suitable (I’m sure) scrap of steel.
Then one day, I met a Pneumatic Drill suitable for my peculiar size and (if I may be so bold) that was just my style, and we became fast friends. Since then, I have learned that busting up rock and pavement and concrete suits me much more than driving finishing nails or tent pegs. Am I different? You bet. But I am what I am.
Of course, that doesn’t really explain what I am doing here on the now no doubt Famous JackHammer blog. By the way, isn’t that the best name for a blog that you ever did see? But I digress.
It happened on a cool spring afternoon in April, tucked safely between the cushions of one of Jeff’s chairs in his basement. Jeff was messing around with his laptop, Kent was waxing eloquent, and Dave had that stupid smirk on his face, and I was hovering somewhere in the room, wandering from closet to spare bedroom to patio door. They were looking for ideas, and, wouldn’t you know it, there I was. I thought they’d never notice. But I’ll have to give them credit for this one. They’ve had some pretty stupid ideas, as you have no doubt noticed already. But this wasn’t one of them.
Of course, when they first mentioned that they’d like my help with a blog, I told them I’d have to get back with them. But when their people contacted my agent, we got things, if you’ll excuse the pun, hammered out. Now, of course, I’m a guy to give credit where credit is due. So, I’ll just have to tell you, in the strictest confidence of course, that if it weren’t for me, I don’t know what these guys would do. Call me the brains behind the brawn. I know, I know, I probably don’t strike (if you’ll pardon the expression) you as a brainiac. But then, that’s where these guys come in. Especially Dave and Jeff. Thanks to them, even I can be brilliant. After all, with brains like their’s, who needs gunpowder? But enough about them.
That only leaves the question of typing left to be answered. Yes, I will admit that typing was somewhat of a challenge at first. But once I got the hang of hitting the keys without obliterating them, I found that I was quite quick. They don’t call me the JackHammer for nothing, after all.
Now, I understand that my hammering, unlike their little pitty-pattering, tends to be a little on the dangerous side. The health risks of constant jackhammering have been well documented in other places, and I’ll not bother you with all the details. Let’s just say that the sound of my hammer blows combined with the explosive air exhaust, makes me dangerous. My head is a registered weapon. Readers are cautioned to wear eye protection along with sound-blocking earmuffs. Nevertheless, out of concern for the regular readers of this blog, I make it a habit to operate only after my silencer is firmly in place on my barrel. And, of course, I try to limit my discourses more than the others, keeping my posting to about once per month in order to help you, my dear readers, from developing carpal tunnel syndrome, restless leg syndrome, ADD, ADHD, or Tourette Syndrome.
I asked for a holster for my next birthday, too.