Thursday, July 24, 2008

Grappling with technology as usual

After one 32-millimeter wrench snapped while I was trying to extricate the Octalink Dura Ace bottom bracket corroded into this US Postal Team Replica Trek, I felt the need for some protection. Note color coordination between helmet and bike frame. Always try to look your best.

The big Chinese adjustable spanner and US-American Park leverage bar eventually had their way with the drive side of the BB. I had to spend some quality time with hammer and chisel, jab saw and gallons of penetrating oil to get all the chunks out of the non-drive side. Then I had to chase the threads to prepare for the new parts arriving tomorrow.

Shortly after this a spectacular set of thunderstorms rolled through. The worst went south and north of us, but we did see a flash flood rush across the street a few yards down from our parking lot. We'd never seen water flow through there before. It did it twice, during two separate downpours in the course of the afternoon.

We had a live feed from the TV station running on the computer. While I was trying to understand a mumbler on the phone, reserving a long-term road bike rental for his daughter, I heard the TV announcer say that a tornado had been reported barreling through the town where I live. By the time I managed to pass the phone off to someone else, the announcer had moved on to another area. All I could find was a written news brief saying, "In Effingham, officials reported wires and trees down, and extensive damage to homes, cars and other structures. Several roads were closed because of downed trees." A building had already collapsed causing one fatality in another town.

Communication to town was out briefly. Eventually I got in touch with the town offices and found out where the storm had concentrated. Then a neighbor called to say she'd gone by my house on the way to hers, and found both our homes intact.

The power was out when I got home. With no running water, and not wanting to let the cold air out of the fridge, I ate cheap pretzel nuggets dipped in peanut butter and drank beer until the lights came back. I really need to eat something more wholesome, but I'm not very hungry anymore. *Urp* Bleah.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't know what to say. . .
I shouldn't leave you home alone.