Kick the Can | Popular Woodworking Magazine

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Kick the dog

When I was a boy, my dad taught me a great way to reseal a can of stain. He would place the open can on the floor with the lid loose in place on the can and put a paper towel over the lid. Then he would rest his foot flat on the towel-covered lid, shift his weight onto the can, and turn 360 degrees. No splashing, no damage to the lid – it worked great.

Years later, I wasn’t paying attention and didn’t lift my foot high enough to remove the stain from the can. Trust me when I say, “You will only make this mistake once in your life.” I think about that mess every time I close a can of paint or stain, using a hammer. –Mike Saunders


I decided to surprise my mother with a knife block for the deluxe knife set he had just bought, so he could store them on the kitchen counter. I secretly measured a couple of knives and headed for my laboratory.

She was thrilled when I gave her the custom block and started filling it right away. Everything was fine until she slipped into the big meat knife. Doin! He crashed into the counter. I guess I should have measured all the knives. –Paul Kohler

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