That’s not really saying much. After all, it was only day eight of the new year and I haven’t been anywhere interesting yet. I was in Baltimore to visit friends and attend The Woodworking Show at the state fairgrounds.

(Really selling this, ain’t I?)

It was Saturday afternoon and I was having trouble hearing the gentleman proclaiming his oil and sanding system the finest in the land over the noise from the router demonstration to my left and the CNC router behind me. It was crowded all day and getting worse by the hour. It was time to be somewhere else.

Reluctantly, I left.

Time and changing markets have largely decimated the antiquing opportunities in Cockeysville. Many of the downtown dealers are gone. One new and happening antique area seems to be in the Hampden neighborhood.

When I lived in the area, Hampden was a working class neighborhood mostly famous for the annual Miracle on 34th Street, a block of over-the-top light displays loosely linked to a holiday in late December. All houses contribute in their own competitive way. Hampden is now trendy with trendy hair salons, trendy restaurants and trendy shops filled with hipsters and other questionable sorts.

There be man-buns!

This is my kind of neighborhood. Of course I had to go.

And I went. Nothing earth-shaking but a collection of small shops with some interesting stuff. One of the interesting pieces is what was described as an English adjustable partner’s drafting desk:

Looks ordinary.

Looks ordinary.

Center section has around 18" of vertical adjustment.

Center section has around 18″ of vertical adjustment.

Two independently adjustable writing surfaces.

Two independently adjustable writing surfaces.

Really nice rule joints. Someone should write an article.

Really nice rule joints. Someone should write an article.

First dovetailed drawer of the new year.

First dovetailed drawer of the new year. One just like it on the other side.

The lock's bolt is centered but the keyhole isn't.

The lock’s bolt is centered but the keyhole isn’t.

Shelf is dovetailed as well. Quality work.

Shelf is dovetailed as well. Quality work. Also shown is how the vertical adjustments are made.

A view from the left for balance.

A view from the left for balance.

Traveling to Baltimore, I came across what is the oddest thing I’ve seen in a while:

A three-legged staked bench on rails with a desk.

A three-legged staked stool on rails with a desk.

Looks odd from the other side, too.

Looks odd from the other side, too.

It took me a while to figure out what it is. A friend gave me a suggestion and I did some research. I believe this is the (believed) mythical sled desk use by nomadic home-schooled Inuit children. Learning al fresco. Curved ends of the skis are missing but I’m sure I ‘m right. This was before seat belts.

The final oddity for today is this pseudo-staked bench from IKEA, the Swedish meatball people:

Looks staked but is it really?

Looks staked but is it really?

Aggregate wood. IKEA makes wood the way McDonalds makes McNuggets only with more glue and less pressure but more glue.

Aggregate wood. IKEA makes wood the way McDonalds makes McNuggets only with more glue but less pressure.