About the 2015 April 1 video

The idea for this video started with a reader asking about the strength of joints using steel pins instead of dowels. Thinking about this, I figured smaller pins would probably be better, but really small pins would just be nails. Then why not combine that with the whole "Greene & Greene" type protruding joinery, and, why not use a brad nailer while I'm at it! Perfect material for an April 1st video.

After I built a box, I realized it could be a "planter", and it just so happened that we had some expired tulips (the bulbs of which we intend to re-plant). Those sad looking mostly dead plants I figured made for a good ending scene.

Fake ads

While I'm at it, why not parody some of the endorsements and such that are very common on videos these days. I'm particularly getting tired seeing all these ads for the "GRR-Ripper". I think it's a cumbersome and klunky device, much less convenient (and thus less likely to be used all the time) than a plain old push stick. So I started the video with a fake ad for push sticks. And why not make it a little edgy. With so much sponsorship on YouTube there's too much a trend to tone it down. In many ways, YouTube is changing to be more like TV. Somebody has to buck the trend!

The second fake ad is a parody of audible.com. Again, they seem to be saturating videos everywhere. I can't see this many ads being effective. Everyone will have heard of them by now. Plus, the "get your fee audiobook" is disingenuous. Because you essentially have to sign up for their paid service, and cancel at the right time. Not exactly what I would call a "free audio book". So I made fun of that. And make fun of all these books people are pushing, but probably haven't actually listened to.

That said, I'm not entirely objecting to ads or sponsorship in videos. I have been approached by MicroJig (the people who make the GRR-Ripper) and by the audible.com people. I'm not completely opposed to endorsements, but I would rather it be an honest endorsement for a product that I use and like. I don't have my hopes up too high on that front - the sort of product I get enthusiastic about tends to be very good at a good price, so it doesn't need a lot of marketing push. Not that I'm unwilling to compromise on that front, but not for a price that advertisers are willing to pay.

Steve Ramsey

I tried to give this video a bit of over exurbant energy. And that, in a way, made it came out as sort of a parody of Steve Ramsey. It was tempting to finish the project off with a coat of spray lacquer, like Steve often does, but that would perhaps have been too direct a jab.

Just after having filmed it, I exchanged some email with Steve and apologized in advance. I showed him the video. Fortunately, he didn't take it personally! In fact, he even considered doing an April 1 video himself with some tie in to this one, but ran out of time. We previously collaborated in 2012 on an April fools video. He did eventually make reference to it in this meere minutes video.


I left the "project" on the table in the living room, with the expired tulips in it, to show my joke project to Rachel. She saw it before I could point it out to her, and said "oh, thanks for the planter!". Well, maybe this thing could actually have a use. So afterwards, I drove the nails all the way in and sanded the edges a bit. Puts it into perspective. As a box to put a plant in, it's just as functional as something that's been finely crafted.

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