October 28, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros

The Tool Fool’s Stool: Under Pressure

tool fools stool

Fully against my will, I was roped (by my wife, no less) into helping a friend with a major home remodel. He was hopelessly behind schedule and needed to get his home ready for painting. It is an older home (dating back to the early 1900’s) with all the problems and hazards that come with it.

When you are so desperate that you are asking Other Tom for help, you’ve hit rock bottom.

So I grabbed a few tools, picked up some Mechanix Gloves (I saw Tom Gaige wear them, and he is a tool bad-ass. I figured at least half of that was the gloves.) and headed over to help my friend out. Between him, a third friend and myself, we did two weeks of work in 36 hours. How?

Peer pressure.

We talk about how bad peer pressure is with our children all the time. Don’t give in. Just because your friends are doing it doesn’t mean you have to. Blah, blah, blah. But you get three guys with orbital sanders in three different parts of a house, and what you end up with is the kind of peer pressure that can end in heatstroke or worse.

Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about.

At the end of a very long day, we all sat in his freshly sanded foyer panting, dripping sweat and sucking down beers like they were energy drinks.

“I think I’m having a heart attack,” I wheezed.

“You guys were killing me,” the owner gasped. “You’re not men, you’re machines.”

“I can’t feel my hands,” says the third. “I think they’ll have to amputate!”


It was right then that we all realized what had happened. We would stop and look around and see the other two working, so we’d go back to it. They’d do the same, but we never did it at the same time. While everyone admitted to taking occasional breaks, no one ever saw anyone else take one, so the illusion was that you were the only one slacking off (something I’m usually perfectly comfortable with).

Toward the end of the day, I was like a runner. I couldn’t see much except what was right in front of me. I could only hear the sound of my breath in my ears, and I seemed to float in a timeless void of dust and paint.

And prayer. “Please God, make one of them give up soon!” I shouted in my mind. Because it wasn’t going to be me.

And that, dear friends, is the definition of peer pressure.

Is it “bad” peer pressure? Arguably, no. No one died (or fainted, which in many ways would have been worse), and we got a ton of work done in a short time. How many projects were completed early because of this sort of pressure?

How should I know? I write editorials.

All I know is that I never want to see an orbital sander again.

Related articles

California Bans Gas Lawn Care Equipment | Video

It’s no surprise that battery-powered equipment is gaining more ground in the lawn care industry. The technology is improving each year and the performance is rising to a level that even Pro landscaping crews can replace gas tools. Starting January 1, 2024 (or whatever is most feasible), California plans to ban the sale of gas […]

How to Ruin Your Power Tools and Make the Repair Man Happy

As one of the largest tool repair destinations in Central Ohio, Ohio Power Tool sees hundreds of tools in for repair each month. Unfortunately, much of the damage we repaired could have been avoided with just a few basic steps towards good tool maintenance. Sometimes, it seems, people ruin tools through lack of care and […]

7 Essential Table Saw Safety Tips from the Pros

Table saws are one of the most common and helpful tools in the workshops of both Pros and non-Pros alike. A healthy respect for all tools is important. However, the need for safety around the table saw’s large spinning blade is obvious. We’ve written more extensively about table saw safety standards, but these 7 table saw safety […]

People Misusing Large Construction Equipment

We were tooling around online today and came across several examples of how to misuse large construction equipment. And believe us, this is some gross misuse of some very large pieces of equipment. Now, the misuse was VERY impressive, but we’re not sure we’d risk our necks (or that much money) on the type of […]

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x