Re: Fixing stuff
To be brutally honest these "amazing" practical skills do not strike me as particularly impressive. The main thing you cite is your electronics expertise. Sure, I have that too. I can design a circuit then make the PCB to implement it, populate it with components, adapt an enclosure to suit it and complete the job. Reasonably advanced stuff - complete computer systems - but as another poster alluded too, that is only within one particular domain.
More generally I consider myself among the more practical of my generation (early thirties). My carpentry is quite good, as is my metalwork, including even machining although I've never learned to weld.
However, I still don't consider myself to be highly practical. It the usual problem of where is the baseline for comparison. For me it is my father and aside from a few specialisms where I exceed him I come up well short. This is a man who is an electrician by trade, but has also installed gas appliances, central heating, double glazing etc etc. He built his own workshop - a proper brick building with services - by hand by himself. He's currently building his own sports car - not from a kit but from box section and sheet steel.
One example that still amazes me: a few years ago he was fixing an issue with my sister's car and diagnosed a need for a new exhaust. Money was tight for her at that point so he looked through his collection of
junk valuable spares and found a potential replacement. One problem - it was the wrong size and if fitted the greater obstruction would choke off the engine. That didn't rule out the exhaust - he went indoors and explained he needed to "figure out what size hole to knock into the exhaust" to make it work.
This sounds incredibly crude and approximate but consider that she had that car for another three or four years with that modified exhaust fitted, and it continued to pass its MOT. Remember, this is an electrician, not a mechanic, and it is precisely that kind of advanced skill across the board that previous generations had but are generally lacking in the under forties.