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My Smoke Bucket Reminds Me Of Life


In the rainy season, a smoke bucket comes in very very handy. The constant wet breeds mosquitos. Like crazy. And during the high tide? Forget about it.

So an old rotten metal bucket full of holes (but still with a handle) is an awesome vessel in which to build a little fire that you keep smoking nearby wherever you are working.

But what’s curious about this system is that it needs almost constant tending. Too much wood, and it’s a fire bucket and not producing smoke. Too much wet grass and leaves, and it kills the coals. So it needs constant tending, adjusting, tweaking, feeding. Today I’m clearing up the fallen branches from the Mango trees in front. So that’s cool. The bits a pieces of branches are perfect for this. They dry up in the fire and keep it going nicely. It turns out it’s a fun way to while away the hours. You need to – get the fire started, – give it enough wood to produce coals to last, – collect the wet wood to stoke it, – collect the wet grass to smoke up your work area – decide where to place wood and grass to create a balance that doesn’t kill the effect – blow on the coals Fire is the ultimate consumer. And so while the idea was to create smoke to allow me to work freely at something else unmolested by mosquitos, in the end, I might just be working more at keeping the smoke going, less at the other things. The smoke bucket is like the job we all do for money. And all the other things the money we earn is supposed to give us, well, these are what we wish we had more time for. What do you think, does this bucket look like your work?

(maybe this is my wee salute to Mike Judge and his classic movie “Office Space”.)


Cassandra I love this. (I don’t even want to begin thinking about my metaphorical smoke bucket!)


Originally published June 8, 2013

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