Yin. And Yang

I was watching one of Richard Delaney‘s videos the other day, where he discusses coiling a rope…

A, I thought he makes a number of interesting and valid points, such as layering the coils, allowing you to reverse the process cleanly or also leaving the ends longer so that they cannot get trapped in a coil causing a tangle – and B, this demonstrated how, given some thought, you can discuss matters that some might discard out of hand as blindingly obvious. Which obviously they are not, QED. Small things do indeed matter.

The other thing it reminded me of was the splicing workshop with Stanley Longstaff in the fire brigade station up in Glottertal in the Black Forest back in 2000. Or was it 2001? Be that as it may… we were wrapping up a major splicing session, moving the gear downstairs, when Dirk managed to stumble and fall down the steps with a box containing a kilometre of rope, spilling it all the way down the steps.

If Richard’s take on coiling a line is yang, the resulting mess of the lobbing a thousand meters of rope down stairs was most certainly yin. Talk about a major mess… nothing controlled about that unravelling!

Stanley of course passed away ten years ago this year and is sorely missed. He leaves a big hole in our community and deserves to be remembered for the passion, humour and music he brought us over the years – not to mention his deep understanding and love for all things rope.

Not forgetting you, big man.