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There is no such thing as a stupid question

This is from my brother and webmaster, Dan:

When we were young there was a rule in our house that if you got into trouble with a teacher at school, you could expect a spanking when you got home. Teachers could do no wrong in my dad's eyes until one report card I got.

My grade 5 teacher, Mr Henderson, wrote that I wasn't doing well in my studies. I was very reluctant to give the report to Dad. I knew he'd be disappointed and maybe angry, but I was shocked at his outburst. "Too many stupid questions! What a ridiculous thing to say! There's no such thing as a stupid question!! That really burns me up!"

After a few "Holy Moses!" he calmed down enough to tell me to ask any question I wanted and never stop asking. He said if you don't know something you've got to ask to find out. There's nothing stupid about asking to know something.

That was the only teacher my dad had no respect for. I thought Dad was overreacting at the time, but after decades of experience and thought on the subject I realized his reaction was well founded.

Dad also set an excellent example for me throughout my years with him. As a construction superintendent and later as project manager he often asked one of his welders questions about a welding technique he used or an iron worker about rigging techniques, etc. I realized that was one of his strengths, which helped him achieve one of the best records as a project manager (for finishing under budget and ahead of time) of anyone in Commonwealth Construction, one of the largest, international, big project companies during the decades Dad worked for them. Achieved with a grade 8 education. (More about Our Dad)

Dave's brother and webmaster

Your source for building tips, woodworking & furniture plans, house plans and building advice directly from Dave...

Hi, I'm Dave Osborne. With over 50 years experience as a journeyman carpenter, foreman and contractor in heavy construction I enjoyed working with apprentices and sharing the tricks of the trade that others shared with me. Now I get emails from Members all over the world and we include many of my answers in our Free Monthly Newsletters. Some of my answers include drawings and instructions specific to a project, but may also answer your questions. I use correct construction terminology, so you can confidently inform your building supply dealers or contractors exactly what you need.


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