The block of wood came wrapped in brown paper, which is possibly the best way to wrap a parcel. I have to admit, also, that the wrapping job was particularly skillful. When I unwrapped the parcel, I found a 3X5 note card tape to the block of wood. The note card said "Have Fun." And boy did I ever have fun. I love sweating.
I found long an 8-by in the garage and did as my landlord, Rick, told me to do. I banged it home to take some weight off the foot of the column. My landlords, by the way, are the ones who shipped the block of wood to me. Six dollars and nine cents postage—that pressure-treated block of wood traveled from Pennsylvania, which, if you don't know, is short for Penn's woods, i.e. those woods once belonged to William Penn, founding father type. It is possible that he once owned my block of wood. Trees live for a long time.
The old block of wood had completely rotted. The result was that one could not lean against the column, lest the column would shift violently. As you can see, the foot of the column is also rotted, so this is only a temporary fix. Furthermore, you can also see that I drove a galvanized nail through the block of wood and into the decking beneath it. This, alas, was probably a bad move. Water, the root of this whole wood block fiasco, could seep along the side of the nail and cause another minor problem further on down the road, like when I'm sixty. The weight of the roof upon the column—remember I had to take weight off the column to slip the block of wood under it—should have been enough to keep the column seated, but it just wasn't. In any case, you can lean on the column all you want now, which I intend to do the moment I stop writing.
There she is! Pretty as a picture, her trim back on. Now, I do understand that it could be construed as somewhat odd to call the foot of a column "she," but there has been so much sun lately. My sense of gender for inanimate objects is all out of whack. The block of wood, however, has whack in spades. It's flush with whack.