by Zac Logdson
Editor’s Note ~ This post is being reprinted with permission from the author. Information about his company and other projects can be found at the end of the post. Thanks, Red Dirt Kelly
As you may recall from a little more than a week ago, I sold my office desk without really any clue as to what I was gonna do to replace it. But after about an hour working from a tiny spare desk we had lying around, that barely held my 30” monitor, I decided I needed to act fast.
My goal was to buy or build a custom desk made from something that wasn’t intended to be a desk. And I wanted it to represent ME a lot better than the old one did. I wanted people to walk in my office and have my desk be so mind-blowingly awesome that they’d have to turn away to shield themselves from the glory of it all. I wanted my desk to send people into seizures. I wanted it to cause children to weep and old people to wet themselves. I wanted my desk to be both loved unconditionally by all who saw it AND feared by those who heard folk tales about it. So I built that desk… and in the process, I became an extremely weak individual.
A few years ago, I read somewhere (no idea where) that having pictures of your family on your desk was a sign of weakness. I don’t know who made that claim or where that perception originated but whoever put that in print is a tool. I can see where it might be accurate but do I really want to do business with anyone that thinks I’m weak just because I have a picture of my family on my desk? That said, I think that concept always kinda stuck with me. On my old desk, I had various photos of my family on the area behind me, plus drawings and notes on my bulletin board from my kids. But like I said, they were behind me. Definitely not the focus of my office. So I decided to change that.
Building the Perfect Desk/Becoming Weak: Step 1 – Concept
There’s an architect in the basement of our building that had some really old (maybe a hundred years) wooden windows he was storing in a nearby shed. I asked about them to see if he’d be willing to sell them. I knew he had some large ones that would make a good desk top but I still needed something for the base. After some digging and searching though, I found that he had some smaller ones as well that would make for a perfect base. So I bought 4 – 30” x 30” 6-pane wooden windows to use as the base.
Here they are:
Building the Perfect Desk/Becoming Weak: Step 2 – Assembly
I had to attach all the windows together to create the base and I decided that the easiest way to do that would be to use hinges:
Then I made a base out of those windows:
After this, I took the two 36” x 36” windows I bought and attached them to one another to make the top of the desk. I also called the glass shop at this time and ordered a 72 x 36” piece of glass to place on top of the desk top so I’d have a smooth, clear surface.
Then I ate some eggs:
The next step of the process was probably the one that took the longest. These windows have been sitting, collecting dust for a VURRY long time. So I cleaned them… and cleaned them… and when I was tired of cleaning them, I made my sons clean them some more:
Building the Perfect Desk/Becoming Weak: Step 3 – Photography
So I have this desk here and it’s pretty cool by itself. Except I really didn’t want people to walk in and be able to see straight through my desk. I usually don’t wear pants at work and if I didn’t come up with a way to cover the windows, my secret would get out. Sooooo, I collected photos of my sons that I had taken over the past year or so, converted them to black and white, sized them up to the dimensions of the windows around the base, printed them out, and using masking tape from the back side, stuck them in the windows.
THEN, I went around Norman and photographed individual letters to make up the words “OLD HAT” to use on the top of the desk, along with taking photos of various landmarks and other things that I like, to use as the pics in the other panes on the top of the desk.
And this is how it turned out:
Building the Perfect Desk/Becoming Weak: Step 5 – Accepting My Weakness
If that fella that thinks having pics of one’s family on their desk is a sign of weakness, then he would think that I am the weakest man alive. Not only do I have pictures of my sons all over my desk, my desk is MADE from pictures of my sons. Here’s the deal… My sons are everything to me. They are the focus of my life. I’ve probably let that fact fall by the wayside WAY too much when building my business and have forgotten that they are the reason I was building the business in the first place. So if they are the focus of my life, they should be the focus of my office as well. I am hoping that this desk will help prevent me from ever forgetting what is truly important in life. I want it to serve as a constant reminder that everything I do here should ultimately just be an avenue that will allow me to focus more of my time on being a great father.
I spent 7 years building Old Hat and that whole time, photos of my sons were behind me. I spent way too much time at the office… way too much time with those photos behind me. Today, I sit behind them. So now, when someone enters my office, the first thing they will see is what is most important to me, and they’ll see my children first, me second. And that’s the way it should be.
Wasn’t intending to get all philosophical when I started this process of getting a new desk. But it’s funny the way life kinda guides you into things without you even realizing it. What I wanted to do is get rid of a desk I hated and replace it with a desk I liked. What I ended up doing is selling a desk that represented everything I don’t want to be and replaced it with a desk that I you’d have to pry from my cold, dead hands before I’d part with it. And I taught myself a pretty good lesson in the process.
I know you won’t like my desk as much as I do. That would be impossible. But I hope that if anything, this desk will inspire someone to either 1) build themselves a really cool desk or 2) embrace their own weakness and make sure their compass is pointed in the right direction.
Note: You can find out more about Zac Logsdon by visiting his website. The RDC also has a link to the Old Hat Creative team blog on the “links” section of our home page. He and his wife were former drama students of Red Dirt Kelly and are now as old as she was when she was their teacher. Ha!