Saturday, December 08, 2007

Turn that Frown Upside Down

The last post was a quite serious post and the blog could use a bit of counterbalance.

I ain't got much, but here goes...

I wanted to help my dad out today (he is in the last stages of moving), but I had too many things going on and next weekend we are gone camping (in a heated yurt) and the weekend after that we are getting ready for family to converge for our Norwegian Christmas Fest(ivus). Things had to get done this weekend or wait for 2008.

So I did the usual 4 loads of laundry and the MiniSnab and I prepared the Saturn* for Christmas tree retrieval. We went to the Reichen tree farm (no, not the 3rd Reichen) and picked out a nice Noble Fir. Just about every Christmas tree sold in America is native to Oregon (as well as actually grown in Oregon), but I like the Noble. Having said that, we usually change species every year; go figure.

We got out our bargain basement table saw out right as one of the Reichens walked up with a chainsaw. He proceeded to slay me and the MiniSnab to feed to his zombies. He saved us getting muddy and lots of effort by cutting our tree down in about 10 seconds. Nice. He jammed the tree into the Saturn*, we gave him some moolah ($) and headed home.

MiniSnab headed off to a babysitting gig and we had a tree propped up in a bucket of water. We had a problem too...where do we put the tree? At first we were going to dismantle a bookshelf and move a couch, but no, too much. We decided to leave the couch and move Ladybug's computer/office desk (w/ print server and scanner) across the living room instead because it was less wide and deep and allowed us to keep the bookshelf. However, we still had (actually still have) one big problem...horrible 40 year old electrical outlets.

The deal with these outlets is that they can't seem to hold a plug anymore. The little things just fall out. The whole dang house is like this. Well, is on two of these plugs (yep, a server out of my house) and so Ladybug's puter would be. I had three new outlets in the garage and today some upgrades had to be done. Luckily, my meager electrical knowledge allowed me to change out 3 outlets without tazing myself. Viva la difference! I need to kick the gals out on some Saturday and change them all out. 2008, mon oncle, 2008.

Where was I. Oh yes. Electricity. Powerful good stuff, but it is best that we conserve it. Unfortunately, I loves me some Christmas lights. I enjoy all the ways people come up with ways to celebrate using lights. We are no exception. I put up our outside lights a week or so after Thanksgiving and tonight I put the lights on the tree. Our eclectic nature is evident in our display. We use 5 different styles of lights in our yard and as many on our tree. Old-time big C-9 bulbs, smaller C-7 bulbs, minilights, frosted globes, satin globes, bubbling oil lights.

It all stems from my Dad's Christmas collection. He has a variable transformer he ran at 50-70 volts. This allowed his lights to last decades. His light stings look nothing like current strings. Talk about lights. He still has bulbs in the shape of a Rose and an Orange (always reminded me of football bowls), candy canes, Santa faces and THEY ALL STILL WORK (afaik). For this reason, I like variety.

We also joined some good friends this evening for a Christmas dinner and celebration at the local Mormon Church. While we are firmly on the path to damnation, we sure appreciated the opportunity to spend some time with some great people and hear the local high school choir belt out a few Christmas songs. I think Baby Jesus approves.

More happened that isn't worth going into, but it was a pretty full day and I wasn't apprehended without due cause even once. Hopefully that keeps happening.

* The Saturn was totalled a few months ago and has never been the stellar Saturn vehicle I traded in once upon a time; in short, it is a lemon. It has been totalled in an accident (my first faulted accident in 25+ yrs of driving) and requires a bit of TLC to keep it going. Luckily the tree gathering went without incident.


ladybug said...

That's one of my fav scenes from that movie! Love the "granny's law" too..."I'm gonna paint your back porch red!"

Swinebread said...

I'd like to see some of those old lights sometime. I haven't seen anything like that since I was 5 or so.

Good thing you found a spot for the tree. I knew it would have to the computer.

The Moody Minstrel said...

Help me out...
What movie is that?

(All I know is that it struck me as a very good argument in favor of retroactive abortion...)

Pandabonium said...

Mon Oncle - One of my favorite movies.

I don't think I could sit through an entire movie like the clip. What was that? The Dale Earnhardt Story? Yipes.

My parents used to always get a "California red fir" at xmas. I remember those bubbling lights too.
That's great that your dad has kept all those old style bulbs.

Momo the Wonder Dog said...

I like tree farms!

I also like "Mon Oncle" - lots of good dog acting. :P

Don Snabulus said...

The YouTube clip was from a movie called "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby."

It was a satire of Nascar and the Nascar culture. I like Wil Ferrell's comedy and I really enjoyed this film.


Hopefully my Dad gets a tree up again some year (not this year, he's moving) and you can see the old school in action.


(All I know is that it struck me as a very good argument in favor of retroactive abortion...)

Our government is way ahead of you Iraq anyway.


Mon Oncle is great. Re: Talladega Nights...the kids are "reformed" a bit later in the movie. Not sure it would save it for you, but anyhoo...


Welcome back. I agree!

Overdroid said...

Now you should do a serious post again. Maybe talk about peak oil.

The Moody Minstrel said...

Peak oil:

A special hair mousse used by vampires.

Dean Wormer said...

Your dad did have some of his old interior stuff at the new house, looks like. Like the old mini-frosted tree from years ago.

We need to get together for the holidays (swiney too!)

Dave said...

peak oil?

Just heard a show that we have much more oil reserves in Alaska than we have been lead to believe. Massive reserve in Prudo Bay, two hundred year supply of natural gas.

In fact, so much that they have a giant complex which does nothing but pump the natural gas back into the ground.

Maybe we should light our Christmas trees with natual gas lanterns.

Don Snabulus said...


A catheter tube: pee coil? That would be serious. Seriously though, the Floating Down Denial link to the right does a great job of talking about Peak Oil, the proof, and how to mitigate its effects.


Moose: The largest undead member of the hoofed mammals.


You are awesome for helping out Dad. I can't tell you how much it means to me. Getting to see the nation's largest museum of mid-20th century nearly collectibles is your reward. :)


I don't think so. (but I would so love to be proven wrong). When camels outnumber military vehicles in Iraq, I will believe there is a huge gas field in Alaska that would eliminate our national desire to be World Cops.

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, there's lots more oil in Alaska (according to a fundamentalist preacher) and today the Pope (chief scientist for the world) assured us that climate change is nonsense (Jesus likes it hot). And of course the major oil companies agree on that one. They are just very cleverly saving the easy, cheap oil in Alaska for later while they spend trillions of dollars to get the last drop out of pools of oil under the sea beds and in dangerous countries around the planet. Sneaky bastards, aren't they?

But this is supposed to be a happy post! So for some REAL laughs, visit the White House website and watch Barney's new video "Holiday in the National Parks". It stars Barney and Miss Beazley of course, George, Laura, the twinks- err twins, and even ...ready for this? ...Tony Blair! "Whaiy", as Laura explains in her delightful drawl, "did you know that the very grass that Barney and Miss Beazley pee and pooh upon is a National Park?"

Must-see hilarity! Preferably under the influence. And may gawd bless Amerika.