A Hamlet-like mortal coil: To sew, or not to sew?

Posted By on July 16, 2015


IF … a big IF … I learn a little more about sail repair and “sewing,” I would like to have a few projects to practice on before wasting too much material (or time and money!) We still don’t have the proper sewing machine (perhaps a Sailrite?) BUT KNOW will not try using Brenda’s old Singer machine on more than 1 or 2 layers of Sunbrella material again. So I’m archiving a small project idea in order to learn a few skills …. a ditty bag that was spotted on s/v Tiger Lilly’s blog.

To be fair, I have helped my wife Brenda on a couple projects including repairing Encore’s Bimini, but she is not the best of teachers (no offense) and I have a few projects of my own that should be do-able. My screens are sitting unfinished in the basement, the hatches aren’t covered and all my brightwork handholds and rails are once again showing sun damage.


I might even be able to convince Brenda that “we really need a heavy duty sewing machine” with the idea that I can repair her favorite leather travel bag!

William Shakespere’s Hamlet: First Folio:

To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether ’tis Nobler in the mind to suffer
The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Fortune,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them: to die, to sleep
No more; and by a sleep, to say we end
The Heart-ache, and the thousand Natural shocks
That Flesh is heir to? ‘Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep,
To sleep, perchance to Dream; aye, there’s the rub,
For in that sleep of death, what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There’s the respect
That makes Calamity of so long life:
For who would bear the Whips and Scorns of time,
The Oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s Contumely, [F: poor]
The pangs of despised Love, the Law’s delay, [F: disprized]
The insolence of Office, and the Spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his Quietus make
With a bare Bodkin? Who would Fardels bear, [F: these Fardels]
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered Country, from whose bourn
No Traveller returns, Puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have,
Than fly to others that we know not of.
Thus Conscience does make Cowards of us all,
And thus the Native hue of Resolution
Is sicklied o’er, with the pale cast of Thought,
And enterprises of great pitch and moment, [F: pith]
With this regard their Currents turn awry, [F: away]
And lose the name of Action. Soft you now,
The fair Ophelia? Nymph, in thy Orisons
Be all my sins remembered.


Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.