"Are you throwing that stuff away?" I asked the contractors - admiring long lengths of discarded wood leaning up against the wall.
"Yes indeed," he said.
"Would you mind if I grabbed a few pieces? I like to use recycled bits of wood to build things."
"Have at 'er," he replied.
So, I rifled through the assorted lengths, dragged them out to my car, and carefully inserted them as the nails and staples hadn't been extracted yet. The last thing I wanted to do was scratch the leather seats or the vinyl dashboard.
The 8' lengths just barely fit, perched on the dash in the front, just clearing the boundary of where I thought the hatch would safely close. I was wrong.
I tried closing the back door - once, twice, third time lucky - then got into the car, and started driving home, terribly excited that I had some excellent pieces of wood to restore and turn into something interesting.
It was at that point that I looked in the lower right quadrant and notice a small web of cracks, emerging from one central spot where the force of the closing of the hatch had instantly traveled down the length of the wood and right into my windshield.
That small web of cracks has matured and grown over these last few days, one bold line stretching out, almost to my driver's side. Today I will pay twice as much for a new windshield as I would have paid to buy that exact collection of wood pieces brand new off the shelf. But, I have a great little story, and that has value, too.