Friday, October 08, 2004
As the day ground down yesterday, there was a smattering of work and periodic interactions with some of my fellow wage slaves. There was something distracting me though. I don't know where this came from but it is starting to bug the hell out of me. My right hand periodically is sending out pain impulses for no good reason. It's that aching, overworked type of pain that you get when you hold a hammer too long or do some excessive weight lifting. It makes no sense for that kind of sensation to exist since my physical activities have not been as impressive as they were while I was working on the Twin Towers. It must be the doing of my semi-silent partner: MS. Rat bastard, I need this hand to type and gingerly lift my Excessively Adorable Children from their slumber. I've been ignoring my MS recently mostly because I've been too busy to have to worry about it. Looks like it was getting lonely since this hand pain was accompanied shortly by vertigo and blurred vision. Argh! Oh well, I guess I'll need to take it easy for a bit and get some rest. I'm sure that with the trip to Upstate NY this weekend, it wont happen that way. I'll have to see if I can get the Mrs to do a bit of the driving after I do all the nasty Highway business. Yeah, ya know, I probably do need to get a little more sleep.
On the way home, Mrs Karma bestowed yet another gift upon me. That or God is certainly watching over my sorry ass. I was listening to the traffic report and heard there was ANOTHER car fire on the turnpike. This time in the west-bound lanes at the Philly/Rt 1 interchange. It was a breeze for me when I actually got to my exit at the Willowgrove Interchange because there was no-one getting off the westbound ramp. The odd part of this was that the traffic in the westbound direction was backed up from Midcounty all the way back to Rt 1. You would think that there would be nothing at all, but I think there was yet another mess that I had not heard of. I should count my blessings that I didn't get my fair share of turnpike ugliness. Some day soon, the powers that be will find it in their hearts to create a USABLE mass transit system that does not require you to go through centercity Philly to get anywhere else. We need a wheel for our spokes. Of course, it is a pretty well establish fact that mass transit is significantly more polluting and expensive then modern personal conveyances. I suppose if everyone were to start using motor scooters or something of that nature, we would be in better shape, but ... whatever. Sigh
After the Mrs got home last night, we brought the kids inside by doing the 'Stomp Parade'. They love that for some reason. Its almost comical to see a largeish adult like myself followed in series by the Mrs and two little soldiers clomping in step. All in a row. I wonder how long this trick will last. As soon as they gleefully followed mommy up into the kitchen for dinner, I wanderer out to the wood pile to lay down some iron on a few rounds. To boost my sagging morale, I decided to lay into some of the smaller rounds. I actually thought ahead today and put on a copious layer of Off to keep those little bastard skeeters off me. So I start busting up a few rounds and after 4 or 5, I grab what I thought would be an easy target because it was smallish and was cut at an odd angle. As it turns out, this piece would just not crack. I really put some effort into this and It would just jump about ... but not even a slight crack. I must be getting tired after doing only one hour of this, so I figure I would try to knock a piece off one of the larger rounds that I have been working on. So I give the wedge a few full strength whacks and as I raise the maul for one last whack for good measure, something just does not feel right. This 100lb maul suddenly feels like it is only 2lb. I quickly realize that something is not quite right and jump back as deftly as I could ... which is more of a stumbling, tottering fall than any catlike ninja leap. Then the 100lb head came thundering down out of the sky and landing squarely in front of me. Well, that will really put a damper on any further activities! I replace the head and try to tamp down the shims in the eye to keep it from dislodging off again, but it keeps working its way loose as I use it like a sledge. In the end, I manage to break off the piece I'm working on, but it is getting dark and the danger of planting this chunk of iron in my skull is a little too great. It would be a good time to back down and look for a better shim. Or maybe even go shower up since I'd drenched in sweat and covered in grime. I'm sure that the wood isn't going anywhere, so off to the showers I go.
I was a bit shocked this morning. I neglected to set my alarm and the Mrs did not set hers either. Usually, either the kids or the dogs or both would supplement our alarms by getting us up before 0630, but not today. Everyone slept in. Either I managed to pull off a deep REM sleep, or the kids/dogs were a exhausted as I was. So it is well past 0700 and we are just getting about the morning activities. The upside to this is that I will not be very tired while driving the 225 miles to Ithaca NY. When I go in to retrieve the Twins, I find them happily lounging in their Detention Bins. I'm surprised since I have turned Jacob's crib back around so that the high side is back to facing the wall. He could easily scale this and get out, but seems content to wait for one of the 'Giants Who Feed' to come get him out. It might be time to switch his crib to a toddler day-bed.
I get going at about 0800 and pretty much expect the traffic to be completely awful. I am not disappointed. The UPS trucks are out in force and various lawn-crew conveyances are lumbering about the back-roads. The Turnpike is sufficiently whacked so that making up any time is right out of the question. Oh, and guess what, there is an overturned truck on a major route (202) that has resulted in it's traffic being re-routed to the turnpike. Brilliant. The exit point of this detour is my exit point at Valley Forge as well. It is a staggering catastrophe. It takes me about 1 and a quarter hours to make it through the 30 mile trip. I stick it out in the left lane and manage to keep that throbbing vein in my forehead from exploding. Lots of really angry people cutting each other off, shaking fists, blaring horns. No gunplay yet, thank goodness. I just stick it out behind this semi of squealing pigs and wait my turn. It really is immaterial anyways. I want to just do my 8 hours of chair surfing and get it over with. Needless to say, when I get to my Mind Numbing Sector, there is only one other person there. Looks like my co-workers are having as much fun as I am. That, and the email in my in-bin reports that my project manager is out sick today. Me thinks that he is interviewing, but I aint telling.