This post should have gone out yesterday, but technical difficulties, soz.

Great excitement as the table project drew a little closer to completion. After a final sand and wipe, it was time to coat the timber to stop it drying out, and to protect it from moisture. Osmo (titular character in an Everybody Loves Raymond-style vehicle, with Cockneys) is the product of choice on this course. The instructions on the tin and from the carpenters were to apply sparingly, which turned out to be simultaneously a soothing and stressful process.

Underside first, where the initial opportunities to explore the parameters of ‘sparingly’ proved that it really does mean hardly any at all. Little rivulets forming along the joins, occasioning those runs up the legs with the brush to redistribute. One technique suggested was to slather it on across the grain before finishing off along the grain, and that seemed to work quite well on the larger faces. Also, starting slightly in from the edges, to avoid too much overflow.

Then, a hilariously thumby moment of turning the whole thing upside down to move on to the top. So soothing. Along and back, along, back… Yet this was also where the stress entered into it. The quest for non-drip perfection, when every brush stroke along the top squeegeed tiny drops of product over the edges. Dab… check… dab dab… check…

Eventually, though, there it was.

Shining like my eyes. The brush went in the Brush Mate tin, where brushes are prevented from drying out and hardening without having to wash them. I had a slight crusty qualm about the use of chemicals so powerful they have to be kept shut in a box at all times, but that was easily disregarded in the giddy excitement of the finish.

And that was pretty much it for the evening: leave it to dry, with the possibility of further smoothing, and another coat or so to complete it, after the Easter break.

I intended to have a go at some more dovetail joints for the remaining hour or so, but my own joints seemed to be seizing up, and uh-oh, bit of a thick nose and sore throat, just in time for the holidays, of course.

“Oh, Osmo… you nugget!”
(Osmo turns to camera, Jack Benny expression; canned laughter and credits)