Saturday, April 02, 2011

Truck, Car, Susquehanna

There is a guy that comes into the store who is kinda dumb, usually pretty drunk, and fairly religious-seeming. He has a bit of a Pete Rose-meets-Moses mane of hair, and I once saw him on the sidewalk outside of our store with a lawnmower (the push kind, not the riding kind), and a case of beer on the lawnmower. Yesterday he came into the store looking for the Def Leppard song, "Animal," which he says has the line "Car...Truck...Susquehanna!" in it (a little subsequent internet research has revealed that the song does not have the line in it, but whatever). He then proceeded to tell a story about riding his bike to Ocean City from Baltimore (southeast, about a 3.5 hour drive) and being near the Susquehanna River Bridge (north, in Pennsylvania), when a huge storm rolled in, "bigger than any storm you've ever seen." Apparently, the storm included "balls of lightning" that fell from the sky, and a "blue grid of electricity," that was later explained to him to be St. Elmo's fire (he also wanted to order the soundtrack to St. Elmo's Fire), and so he "stood up on his pedals" to get some momentum going and outrun the storm. Eventually, he says, the storm did subside, but now it was nighttime, and he had come to the Susquehanna River Bridge. He said he got about a quarter mile onto the bridge when a car and truck started to come onto the bridge "in tandem." At this point in the story I interjected that he must have had to throw his bike off the bridge and then jump in after it, but that's not what happened. He actually only had to throw his bike over the median (I didn't realize that it was a four-lane bridge) and then jump over it. He then flagged down a car and asked to be driven over the rest of the bridge ("it's always important to ask for help.") The moral of the story was that the storm somehow saved his life, because he had pedaled faster to get out of the storm, and then he ended up on the bridge at a time when the car/truck tandem did not kill him. I'm not exactly sure how that all works out, because in my mind it was the storm that put him on that bridge exactly when the car/truck tandem happened to be coming across, but whatever. He told the story much better than how I just wrote it, and he was actually able to end it with revealing the fact that the Def Leppard song, "Animal," has the line "Car...Truck...Susquehanna!", so the line ended up as some sort of climax or punchline to the story. Which made it kind of exciting. I'm kinda sad that the line isn't in the song.

It is Saturday morning. This is what Saturday morning means to me:

1. Wake up when Jeannie leaves for yoga or pilates or whatever it is.
2. Internet checking. Pooping.
3. Car Talk
4. Big Breakfast.
5. Jeannie returns
6. Start the day's projects.

Which today involves work in the back bedroom. Some masonry work, some wiring, some furring strips, maybe even some drywall. Eventually (maybe tomorrow?), some AC duct work. On wednesday we had a meeting with a guy from the company that did our energy audit and who is arrainging all of the insulation work that's going to be done, and he did a blower-door test on the house, which was pretty exciting. A blower-door test is where they put a big fan in your door blowing outward, which lowers the air pressure inside your house, and then they see how much air rushes in and where the air is rushing in from. Basically, it's a where to see how leaky your house is and where it's leaking. It looked like this:

The dude's name was Paul and he was very nice. He reminded me vaguely of Stinky Steinmetz.

Last weekend the Jeanners and I took a day off and headed down to DC to hit some museums and walk around. It turned out to be a pretty nice day and some of the trees were blooming and it was a good day to be out and about. we started out at the National Gallery (of art), which is probably my favorite museum, and then we headed over to the Building Museum, which I had never been to but was one of the coolest buildings I've ever been in. The main atrium looks like this:

They also had a really great exhibit on the woman who designed a lot of famous murals and mosiac works, including some of the mosaics in the dome at the St. Louis New Cathedral. It was pretty amazing to see the process for how shit like that is done. Also amazing to see pictures of the workshops in what must have been the 30's or 40's (I don't read too closely, I guess), where rows of guys are sitting at tables working on tiny portions of these huge mosaics. Does shit like that get done anymore?

It is almost time to make breakfast and listen to Car Talk, so I will bid you a fond adieu. To you and you and you-oo.

p.s. I've gotten some sort of swamp bug bites from somewhere. Itchin'.

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