Tag Archives: musings

The Big Chilly

Right now I am living deep inside a real big chilly. It’s something like -42 C or whatever. When it’s that cold, does it matter any more? I don’t even check. It’s -40, yada yada.

Up until recently, it’s been fairly easy to live with.

But … there’s always something.

First, my truck wouldn’t start. It was plugged in, but despite heat shots and trickle chargers and a couple of boosts, it protested and said no, I’m not starting. Now leave me alone or put me in a warm garage!

There I was, my whatis sticking up in the wind chill factor while I fussed over an exposed engine, checking oil and fumbling around trying to determine if the the block heater was still working as I invented a totally new dialect composed entirely of vulgarities.

Then my bathtub drain froze.

Yup. My bathtub drain.

I was standing in the tub shower, soaping up and enjoying the warmth when I realised that the water was up to my ankles. It wasn’t a clog, because the day before, the water was draining normally.

But now? There’s no movement at all, not even a trickle.

I have a bathtub full of used water and an open drain. It just sits there, staring stupidly at me while I think about flamethrowers and other incendiary devices.

Then my house door wouldn’t lock. It was too cold for the tumblers to engage. I almost got down on my knees and begged. Really? You aren’t going to lock? Just hang on a sec, I have to go throw a minor tantrum. Waaahh! 🤣

And let’s not forget the head cold. Its onset blended seamlessly with the arrival of several days of major meetings that I had to attend, a tissue box under one arm and a Vicks inhaler lodged, unnoticed, in a nostril.

Of course, all of this happened while my M is away. (Is there a message in that?)

But, an update.

It got warmer. Right now, it’s about -12 C.

I got my truck towed. It got its wish and is in warm garage awaiting a new block heater.

I awoke in the middle of the night to the sound of my bathtub draining. It turns out that all I had to do was wait. Scared the crap out of me though – there I was, creeping into the bathroom with my phone in one hand and a fly swatter in the other. If it had been an intruder, what was I going to do with the fly swatter??? (Oh look, there’s a mutant mosquito in the bathroom – hand me the swatter please.)

I got my hair dryer, pointed it at my door lock and warmed up all the parts.

That worked.

My cold is almost gone. So is a lot of the other cold.

Things are looking up, especially the temperature. (Okay, I’ll stop with the cheesy comments.)

So how has this “polar vortex” (doesn’t that sound like the name of a disaster movie? Polar Vortex, starring Jennifer Aniston and Tom Cruise. Watch if you dare. Because you may never go outside again. 《Sound of loud chattering teeth.》) been treating you??? Among other places, it has hit the west coast of the continent pretty hard.

Cold Weather

This is what -36°C looks like …

… at the southern end of Great Slave Lake in Northwest Territories. In Fahrenheit, that’s -33.

Very sharp and sunny, but my, is it chilly!

Somehow, the air looks cold.

I usually walk to work, but today I needed to take my vehicle; it was slow to start even though it had been plugged in.

I let it run, but the doors protested at being opened (skreeeech) and the tires felt square as I pressed the gas and started moving forward (they had frozen a bit).

I feel like that too when I have to do something I don’t want to do. I’m slow to start and I don’t want to move. My tires are frozen.

Sometimes, you’re just cold and need to get going.

Sometimes, you need to listen to your warmer, more blanket-buried self.

Flying Anyone?

I found this airplane stuck to a pole …

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It’s one of the types I learned to fly, back when I was in my salad days.

It made me a bit sad to see it there, poised as if in flight but stuck, permanently roosted and rooted to the ground, a facsimile of its former self. Not a good place for an airplane to be.

People can be stuck too. They look like they’re going somewhere but they’re not. Straining forward but frozen, seeing but sightless.

Airplanes are meant to fly.

So are we all.

Happy New Year, everyone. Good wishes for 2019. 🙂

Don’t Call Me Petal

Are there “pet” names in your life? Names that are perhaps more sour than sweet? Names that make you roll your eyes? Or worse, make you want to hurl?

I mean, I’ve been called names that, well, I can’t repeat here. Like, you know, twitface and frackwit. I can take those.

But what I really can’t stand are a lot of those so-called endearments. Or names that suggest I’m twelve. Or impart a sense of intimacy that doesn’t exist.

Dear store employees, don’t call me dear or sweetie or hon or honey. I don’t know you from a can of paint, so stop pretending I’m your granny. The one with an advanced case of dementia.

Just because I’m of a certain age doesn’t mean you can take liberties.

Likewise, don’t call me petal. I hate that. Or other assorted plant parts. Like flower, blossom or daisy. It’s interesting how no one gets called stamen or pistil. Who in the world wants to be called by the names of plant reproductive organs anyway??

Then there’s animal names. Kitty, kittykins, bunny, fluffy and poodle leap to mind.

My M made these tarts. They were yummy.

I wouldn’t want to be called a tart, either. But I almost choked when standing in line behind a man who, while talking loudly on his phone, kept calling his significant other tart and tarty.

Hummm. I’m feeling tarty today. I think I’ll visit Victoria’s Secret and stand on a corner.

Yikes.

There are lots of other food names. Muffin, cupcake, cookie, pudding, sugar and tootsie. And what about shrimp roll or pumpkin? If you call me one of those, I might get out my extra large roll of duct tape and find a place to stick it.

I guess my point (other than the one at the top of my head) is that most of the time, these “pet” names are unsolicited. They get hung on you whether you want them or not. And oftentimes by people who don’t know you very well, or perhaps not at all. A store clerk once called a friend of mine “cuddles.” They did not know each other and yes, she’s a bit overweight. She left the store and never went back. What was that clerk thinking? Clearly, not much.

A few other choice monikers are sweet cheeks, baby doll, snookums, pookie and peach. Aren’t those lovely?

Eureka! The next time someone I don’t know (or barely know) attempts to reduce me to a single ridiculous word, I’ll fight fire with fire.

Waiter/ess: And what would you like today dear?

Me: Awww. Look at you, you snookums muffin. Now be a baby doll and get me a steak and salad. And petal sweetie, don’t forget to fetch me some extra napkins and some ketchup. Run along now. There’s a good little poodle.

Would that work? I mean, you have to start somewhere. What do you think?