Friday, March 25, 2011

Precipitation Possible.....Sometime.

Turkey season opens tomorrow. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but it’s the closest thing we have to lion hunting in Georgia. Terribly exciting.

I checked the weather and was somewhat disconcerted to find an estimated precipitation of 60%. I was crestfallen at first, but I rallied. What does 60% mean anyway? Initially it sounds like it’s probably going to rain, but is it? It might rain. That’s all I know. We have an entire system devoted to weather prediction and all I can tell you based on my usage of that system is: it may or may not rain tomorrow. 

I wish I had a job with zero accountability for my projections. If I wandered into my boss’s office right now and said “you know what – I bet those numbers I gave you this morning are probably at least 40% correct” he would have something non-congratulatory to say about it.

This isn't about the weather man himself, as a person though.  I actually grew up with the weatherman’s son. He was a prince of a character, as was his dad. All I'm saying is: I do recall that when his wife asked him when he’d be ready for dinner – he didn’t give her a band of percentages and likely times, or draw a sunny smiley face with clouds over it; he said “six o’clock.”

But ask him if it’ll rain?

“Oh it might.”

You know what the most often quoted percentage is on the weather channel? 50%*  A 50% chance means “it may or may not rain. Who knows? We give up!”

That’s quite a tip.

I find it offensive that, technologically speaking, we can put a man on the moon, drive around in vehicles propelled by millions of tiny controlled explosions, speak chinese, domesticate crocodiles, and communicate telepathically and yet nobody is really sure what the weather will do 12 hours out. It might rain. It might not. Who knows?

Even worse: our one weather authority has the audacity to resort to percentage likelihoods that essentially communicate "based on our years of recorded history, satellites literally orbiting the earth, and various scientific techniques: we have absolutely no idea what might happen tomorrow. We hope its not bad."

We’ve spent billions on lunar landings and space stations. Are we allocating our resources to the right places? Really? Are you sure? That ziplock baggie full of moon rocks the space program has generated is neat and all, but would I trade it for knowing whether or not to lug a rainsuit around all day tomorrow?


Right now all I can do is switch off the weather channel, walk outside, then ask myself: "Self: are you getting wet? If yes – congratulations - we have made a discovery: it IS definitely going to rain."

As long we’re talking about moon rocks here, I’d like to point out that the only reason I’m somewhat dubious about our having actually landed on the moon is this: we haven’t completely destroyed the moon yet.

Now tell me honestly: as an American, how long do you really think we can have access to an unspoiled landscape and not strip mine it or something? Not long I don’t think. History seems to indicate that if you give us access to somewhere new: we’re going to kill everything, then pave it.

I bet there is a rich white guy in Washington right now building a slide deck describing how he wants to take more of those rocks right up there and bring them here - right down here to this rock for fun and profit.  Get ready for it. 

Last time I checked we hadn’t dug up anything serious on the moon; I guess that's good, but when we do – I hope they employ our tried and true American method of exploration: dig until something terrible happens, then stop.

At least I'm sure it won't rain on them while they do it.  Well, pretty sure.

*I have no basis for that statement.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

So Cute

Hey – guess what? It is true. I’m 30 for the second time, still married – and I’m still mostly alive.

Thanks for wondering.

I’m also getting older every day, I found a gray hair on top of my head instead of just near my ears, I have a few liver spots on my hands and I recently had a nose hair grow so long that I could stretch it all the way to the other nostril. 

I thought that nose hair was worth waking Tyler up at 2AM to look at.

She did not.

The point is: I am officially out of control.

You wonder how a grown man lets himself go to the point he has a small cabbage patch of wiry hair growing from each ear hole and a vague arrangement of multi-day crumbs on his shirt? This is how it starts.
Also, for the record - we are not pregnant.

But your little heart leapt in your chest at the thought of it though, didn’t it? Ha! Sucker. Rest easy - nobody around here is getting pregnant except my sister who is 100% pregnant already and couldn’t possibly be pregnant-er.  Want to talk pregnant? Call her up. Nothing doing over here.

Tyler spent the night with her sister and our young niece recently, came home and announced “I’m not ready for kids”. Generally a situation like that should lead you as a husband to immediately act like you DO want whatever it is your wife doesn’t want (in this case - kids) BADLY – which ordinarily solidifies in the woman’s mind how badly she doesn’t want what you now supposedly DO want – thereby keeping you safe just a bit longer.

I tried that tactic by immediately saying – “Aaawwww!! Well, they are just so cute though! I think maybe we want one next year!”

Based on her statement about not wanting kids yet - I expected a long litany of reasons why kids are a terrible idea, which I would slowly allow to convince me that it's true - kids are a terrible idea.

That did not happen.

Instead, she immediately responded “ok next year sounds good” and flounced off; leaving me stricken and dumbfounded - having overplayed my hand in the most dangerous poker game of all: kid negotiation.  Yet another miscalculation on the short road to complete lack of autonomy.

I tried to recover by spending the last two weeks smugly pointing out the petulant wail of every newborn we come across in a restaurant and highlighting for Tyler the miserable, grim faces of its loathsome parents - to no avail. 

"Awww he's so cute though" she says.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Who's Your Indian

Having finally lost all patience with the "Townhouse" situation and my complete lack of accessible workshop space - I proposed a trip to the Tandy leather store for some supplies and a little arts and crafts project suitable for miserable confined Townhouse living. 

I wasn't really paying attention as the man helped us check out, but I noticed the salesman trail off a bit midway through his recital of my purchase, "belly leather, punch set, snaps, leather dye......children's moccasin kit..." and I looked up to find him staring quizzically at me. 

"Is this yours, sir?" he asked. I started to respond in the negative when I caught sight of a hand flapping from across the store "Halloooo!!!" Tyler trilled, grinning over a mountain of leather skins. "Ummm. Those little shoesies are for meeeeee!"

I looked at the package which said "no instructions needed" in bold type and shrugged at the salesman who, girded in his heavily-tooled leather belt, and disgusted, I'm sure, with our amateur purchases - continued ringing me up.

Then, entirely too fast for her to have walked all the way across the store, I heard hissed directly in my ear: "Ah. Can we find a bathroom?"  Startled, I turned to find Tyler standing directly behind me twisting around in her shoes with a look of intense concentration on her face.

"Whoa! How did you get over here that fast?"

"I have to go to the bathroom."

"What? There is a bathroom right there in the back of this store. I can see it."

"No I don't want to go in that one."


"Because. I don't. Also, it says 'employees only' on it. Let's find a Chick fil a."

"What? What are they going to do? Arrest you? Really? A fast food restaurant? What is wrong with you? Go in there."

"No. I can make it until we get home."

"Home is 30 minutes away.  Just a second ago you said you had to find a bathroom immediately. I am confused. What dark magic is this? "

"Well, now I can make it. Lets go home."

From that I can only assume that anytime she has to find a restroom - all I have to do is argue with her and everything is fine.

I am up to that challenge.

Last night we began our leatherworking attempt. I stood at the counter in the kitchen lost entirely in my own thoughts and plans for my little leather pouch, but I periodically heard various frustrated musings coming from the direction of the couch and the rawhide moccasin sewing attempt occuring thereon.  Finally, after about 45 minutes of silence, I heard Tyler D. Ewing, 1/16 Cherokee Indian, grumble to herself from the wreckage of a maimed children's moccasin set:

"Argh. I must not be an Indian after all."

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Goodbye Black Widow

Last month the painters managed to unplug my carport freezer - effectively destroying everything in it; in particular: my best preserved specimen of a HUGE female black widow spider.  It was the size of an average pecan and she'd been in there on ice for a number of years.

I feel like that says something about me, but I'm not sure what.