8:00 am. January 20, 2010.

The Santa Cruz Mountains had been without power for four days, and the final blast of a tropical storm bent the trees around our house beyond the point of no return... a Redwood Burl Bomb, attached to a 40 foot long 10 inch diameter tree top, snapped off about 150 feet above our house and made a hole-in-one through our dining room skylight, rocking our house to the foundations. We were very fortunate that nobody was hurt and AAA homeowners insurance was awesome in helping us out that day and in days to follow.  AAA actually came the long way up Hwy 9 and down Skyline to get to us because of a mud slide blocking Hwy 17. 

Within a couple of months we had put the house back together. 


The Burl Bomb was estimated at about 450 pounds.

The family dining room table that I had grown up with however was a total loss and needed to be replaced.


This is the chair that Kelley sat in for breakfast every morning. Since the power was out, Kathy took the girls to Summit Store for a muffin before school,
and Kelley was not sitting in this chair at 8:00.


Of course I had been brainstorming for many years about a table design that I wanted to build someday ... and "someday" got accelerated to the present day that day.



Obviously... it needed to be wrapped in tree roots to match the front door and the rest of the carved root design theme we've done ourselves around our home.



The thing I lacked was time since Oakley was consuming it all at the time.  Soooo, against my DIY art nature, I hired the project out to
This turned out to be a smashing success, and led to an amazing 2 week adventure in Lima, Cusco, and Machu Picchu Peru and the Bolivian Amazon.

Lance Reynolds and Olinda Romani of R-Furniture are brokers for, and relations of, artists trained at the Cusco School of Art in Cusco Peru.  Good people.

  In 1534 Conquistadore Francisco Pizarro, recognizing the incredible natural talent of the native Inca, formed the Cusco School of Art in the capital city of the Inca... and the traditions of wood and stone carving, and the arts in general thrives there to this day.


The art produced by these people stands with the greatest the world has ever seen... Unfortunately most of that predating 1534 was lost to Pizarros other horrific acts.



Well, we met up with the descendants of these artists... and they helped me to facilitate my own art.



These people are truly humbling in their skill and the way they were able to bring my vision into reality.  I just can't say enough good things about these folks.



And of course... they all got new sunglasses.



The project continues... Table...



And chairs...



And leather.


Lima Peru last November.
Time to pack it up.  You can see the pride of accomplishment in the body language on the sidewalk.  I just dig that so much.  It's something I feel every time I see a pair of Oakley glasses walk by on someone.



The Table arrived via ship in Los Angeles on New Years eve 2011.


By sheer coincidence Kathy and I flew to LAX on the second anniversary of

The Day The Burl Bomb Dropped

to pick up the table.

Holy Cow this thing is heavy. "We're moving this... How?"

Not a scratch...


A special thanks to all the friends who risked their lives to carry all 400 lbs across muddy, steep, narrow terrain to bring our new table the last 100 feet to the big doors at the back of the dining room.

Without a scratch.

Thank you very much guys. for the help, and the wise ass commentary.



Home Sweet Home


Thought you might enjoy this project story...





Story written the day after the power came back on...

Here is what happens when a 400-500 pound chunk of redwood falls 150 feet and makes a hole-in-one thru a skylight, landing on the dining room table.
See above pix.

At about 8:00 January 20, the very last breath of a raging two day storm ripped the top out of one of our biggest Redwood trees. A chunk of that made
a fairly clean shot right thru a skylight... (though four were shattered). It missed the power, phone and cable lines by inches. Another large chunk was leaning against the propane valve... but did no damage. It just missed the electric meter. The table, yes, our treasured teak family table, was blasted to bits, but the hanging lamp over it, though
full of bark and needles, was unscathed as were the large glass windows in the dining room. The falling wood actually left red juicy smears down the glass, but did not break it. The impact rocked the whole house so hard that it unloaded the "game closet" full of board games onto the floor 20 feet away from the impact site. The kids had
just left for school. Daisy the dog and I were the only ones home. I dove for a corner...

Daisy the dog is going to need psychotherapy, she was still shaking and grinding her teeth three days later. She was discovered hiding under the covers of Morgan's bed.
(She is never allowed on the furniture). She was one scared puppy. (As was I).

At about 150 feet there was a fork in the trunk. One arm of the fork, a "Buttress", the horizontal part, had a bunch of smaller trunks going up from it. The buttress is what landed in our dining room. All but one of the smaller trunks broke off on the way down and stabbed deep into the hillside, touching but not severing the 220v line to the well pump.
One smaller trunk about 10 inch diameter remained on the buttress until it impacted the roof, snapping the trunk off over top of a roof beam while the buttress, now just a big ol' solid knothole, ripped thru the skylight and boomed into the table, turning it to teakwood matchsticks. The entire... and I mean Entire inside of the middle floor of the house was twinkling with glass shards. We vacuumed for a week to get rid of it all and shards still show up.

I had three of our big trees topped. The biggest, I had topped down to about 25 inches in trunk diameter, the point where it had been broken off at some point in the past. This is the joint where the big fork broke off that hit the house. The tree is about 40 feet shorter than it was but is still about 150' tall.

I counted 104 rings at the point at which they stopped cutting, right above the old break point. I can only conclude that we were almost the last people killed by the 1906 earthquake!