Monday, June 14, 2010

Back from Hiatus

My toe hurts. It hurts quite a bit. I don't know why. I assume it's gout, which is why I've given up drinking.

I'm currently treating the ailment with one of the best pain killers known to man - bourbon. Woodford Reserve Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey. Whiskey with an e.

We have multiple ongoing sagas here at the homestead - it's almost like an episode of Lost, except without any time travel, aliens, dinosaurs, or an audience. At least, I imagine it's like that, as I've never in my life seen an episode of Lost. I'm much too sophisticated for that.

Plus, it conflicted with Manswers, or 1000 Ways to Die, or something like that.

The first saga is that of camping. The Childrens have been nagging me about camping ever since we visited their aunt and uncle at a campsite in the Medicine Bows (a couple years back, I think). I broke down and purchased an enormous tent two weeks ago. A Kelty Parthenon 8. I bought the last one on Memorial Day, and I was back there yesterday, and they didn't have any more. Heh. The price was excellent. Much cheaper than anything I could find online.

Thus far, all we've managed to do is spend one night in it in the back yard, and then in the morning, I toasted bread on the camp stove with the toaster attachment, slathered it in Nutella, and served it to the fambily as breakfast. I also percolated coffee on the camp stove. It was just like camping, except there was a nice hot shower and a proper bathroom. The Childrens had a blast, though I had to remove the room divider early on. The Mrs. hemmed and hawed about joining us in the tent until well after we were all asleep out there, so she wasn't there at first, and when HannahC realized that it was dark and she was the only one on the "girls' side" of the tent, she got all worried.

I slept fine excepting for two instances. The first, I had just drifted off to sleep when I suddenly had this dream that there were bright lights shining in my eyes, blinding me. I awoke to find that there were bright lights shining in my eyes, though I wasn't blind. No, The Mrs. has decided to join us, and so she had flipped on the flood lights in the yard while she trekked back ond forth like 40 times to get all her gear. I dunno how many times, cuz I went back to sleep after about the second trip. But in the morning when it was time to break camp, I found she had her self-inflating ground cushion, zero degree "Deer Hunter" sleeping bag, two feather pillows, her teddy bear, and the body pillow.

That's right, gentle readers, my wife managed to stuff one of those 4 foot-long body pillows down in her sleeping bag. Her sleeping bag is enormous, though. More like a bedroll, really.
Me, CherkyB: "Wow. You brought all this stuff down here for the night? Not a very good dry run."

The Mrs.: "What do you mean?"

Me, CherkyB: "Well, we're not taking all this stuff with us if we go camping."

The Mrs.: "Oh, I'm bringing it."

Me, CherkyB: "We won't have room."

The Mrs.: "The pickup bed is enormous."

Me, CherkyB: "Well, it's not really in the spirit of camping."

The Mrs.: "Why are you always gratuitously attacking me? You're such a jerk!"
The second time I woke up was about 4am, when the howling of the coyotes all around us stirred something deep inside me that I had repressed years ago when I got married and have tried to keep repressed in order to be a good husband - my survival instinct. I got to thinking about how, though we have never seen a coyote actually in the yard, they like to run along the trail behind our yard. A trail separated from our yard by a 3 foot high fence that FreddyC, despite being 12 years old and rather smallish, has no problem jumping whenever it seems something on the other side might be more exciting. But if the coyotes clear the fence, they'd still have to make it the 15 feet across the grass to where the tent is and then somehow make it through the tent walls, which are multiple meters thick, if you go by their static water pressure resistance rating.

Naturally, though, I just thought to myself,
Me, CherkyB: "Self, the coyotes aren't going to try to eat you. Now, they might try to eat MaxieC, who is right next to you and quite a bit less imposing in size. Plus, he's probably covered with whatever nasty candy he was eating right before bed, making him especially stinky."

Me, CherkyB: "But still, if they do attempt it, as The Man, it'll be your job to thwart the attack."

Me, CherkyB: "That, Self, is why it was good thinking to bring the .40cal with 14 rounds of JHP all loaded up instead of that pissant little 9mm. And the spare magazine with another 13 rounds."

Me, CherkyB: "Oh, and Self, you need to stop referring to it as 'your divorce attorney'. The Mrs. doesn't really think that's all that funny. And even though you and I both know she thinks it's hysterical - after all, she wanted desperately to marry you, of all people, so she must appreciate your inability to take anything seriously, even if she doesn't let on - it's the kind of thing that can be used against you at some later date."
I slept like a baby after that.

Now, though, I cannot go camping because I don't have a good ice chest. I don't like any of the ones I find locally except for the Yeti, but I'll be damned if I'm going to pay $300 for a stinking ice chest. Bear proof or not.

Which bring me to my second saga. I decided to see if there was a way I could make it so that the air conditioner cools the second floor, where all the bedrooms are, on hot days. It turns out there is. It just involves completely replacing my entire HVAC system (other than the duct work, though the duct work is certainly as defective as everything else), plus adding a second A/C that will have the blower unit in the attic with all new duct work up there to cool just the second floor. But, hey, that's only $25k, and I'll get close to $5k in rebates and energy tax credits and such on top of that.

See, I have one of these. It's out of warranty and 12 years old, which turns out to be rather old for one of these to still be running.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

CherkyB, Giver of Fatherly Advice

MaxieC: "Hey Dah, have you ever considered that every second that you live you"

Me, CherkyB [interrupting]: "Are one second closer to death?"

MaxieC: "Yeah. Exactly."

Me, CherkyB: "Yup. In fact, I'm pretty close to death."

The Mrs. [from the next room]: "Oh stop."

Me, CherkyB: "I'm probably halfway to death. Maybe closer. Hard to say exactly. Now, womens live longer than men by like 7 years, so Momma's not as close to death as I am despite her being older then I am."

MaxieC: "So I'll die sooner."

Me, CherkyB: "Well, not sooner than Momma. But you'll probably die sooner than your wife. That's why you should always marry a woman who is at least 7 years younger than you."

MaxieC: "Why?"

Me, CherkyB: "So that your wife doesn't live a really long time after you die. Hmmm...wait. That's backwards. You'd have to marry a woman 7 years older than you for that to work. Well, you should still make sure you marry a woman at least 7 years younger than you anyways."

MaxieC: "Oh. Ok, Dah."