Saturday, September 27, 2008


More Refrigerator News

The good news: we got a new refrigerator and it looks great in our kitchen. The bad news: our double oven died in the same surge that killed our refrigerator. The good news: when we get a new oven it will match our shinny stainless steal fridge. The bad news: it will cost MORE than the fridge.

So we are now shopping for a oven/microwave combo unit that will fit in our wall. We got the fridge from The Great Indoors which is really Sears and it was a good experience. However it was delivered by Taco Libre and his henchmen.

Imagine if you will, a 14 yr old in desperate need of his Ridlen and one of those Mexican wrestlers who wear those masks, smoosh them together and device into four equal pieces, give them a truck and a furniture dolly and you'll have Taco Libre and his henchmen.

They came flying down our street, overshot the house, one jumped out and the rear lift gate started to rise before the tuck had come to a complete stop. The truck-leaper came to the front door clipboard in hand and announced he "had a refrigerator as was to leave it in the carton, where is the old one?" After overcoming the language barrier and straightening out the first two points, I turned to see 2 Tasmanian Devils ripping and tearing everything and anything attached to the terrified appliance. Edwardo Sissorhands. The third devil was standing in the truck, although I did not see it, I suspect he plucked the cardboard encased cooler and through it down to his com padres on the street.

Meanwhile, our dear old Amana was being manhandled into the street and onto the truck. We got Amana practically the same time we got Katie. As they skirted the mounting debris that was the new fridge's packing material, one of the drawers few out and bounced across the tarmac. It was being lifted into the truck by the lift-gate when the bottom section got crushed between the gate and the back of the truck. They had to lower the gate to get it out. I could watch no more.

Our new refrigerator now stripped naked was hurling towards the front door shouldered by 2 ADD Mexican wrestlers, wide side first. My wife shouted "Stop!" The word bounced off them like so many insults from the crowd. Linda through herself in front of the wedged refrigerator and explained that if they turned it 90 degrees it would fit. After much arm waving and adding of vowels to the end of words the fridge was through the door and slammed into the space where we hoped it would fit.

Once in it's native habitat it was obvious the appliance still had some vestiges of it's previous bondage. Taco and his men had to be pulled away with assurances that we would finish the defilement ourselves. Linda gave them waters and they were off. I think the whole event took less than 2 minutes. We were out of breath and emotionally spent.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Now we cool

I am writing this from my usual computer desk in my living room. We have exited the powerless zone. One day after the stunning omission of repair work to our little transformer we have been made whole. CalientePhobia is on the retreat.

Unfortunately all is not perfect in suburbia. As we began to power up our electronic infrastructure we discovered that our trusty refrigerator of 18 years gave up the ghost during the Ike ordeal. Let us bow our heads and raise our glass . . . ahh Amana, I knew her well . . .

So we are moving on. I see a bright gleaming french door cooler in our future. What it lacks in cubic feet an shear brawn it makes up for with an extra door, a svelte physic an styling from this century.

We still have a pile of branches in our front yard and a battalion of trash bags lining the driveway but we are well on our way to Normalville

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Journeying through both space and time

Meet Bob and Linda; typical suburbanites trying to navigate the challenges of two kids in college, an ever expanding waistline and a dog with a taste for balcony. We find them pedaling back from a pizza buffet dinner, the first meal in 4 days that wasn't some forgotten frozen meat cooked on a grill or eaten out of a soggy cooler. Unbenounced to them, as they wind past the fallen trees and stacks of garbage bags they are about to enter . . . . the powerless zone

Their conversation revolved around the promise electricity returning to their suburban home. There were whispers from neighbors about electric company trucks stalking the streets, even predictions of an AC filled evening. It was too much to hope for. Just today, neighbors across the street who previously had their power restored had it disappear mysteriously while making beanieweenie. Their whole street was sliding into another dark night.

Just then they saw it, the electric glow that could only come from a television. The street was quiet, there were no droning generator sounds. They pedaled on. Over there! Two sconces burned on either side of a front door. They pedaled faster. There were signs of light and free flowing electrons everywhere, both sides of the street!

They finally came to their own block. The usual gaggle of neighbors chatting in the twilight were no where to be found. They were in their houses cooking and showering. They could taste the anticipation and the pizza burps from all the pedaling. Their next door neighbors and the ones across the street - both houses lit up like Christmas morning! They stopped in front of their own well manicured domicile with mouths agape. Every house up and down the street was basking in alternating current except theirs. The windows were black as coal, no AC unit puring beside the house, no prospect of seeing the Gilmore Girls tonight.

They reluctantly picked up their flashlights and sloughed off to the bathroom to get ready for another night on the living room floor wondering if they would every break free from . . . the powerless zone

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Working our way back

Today (Tuesday) Linda and I went back to work since Thursday. We still don't have any power and we are out of ice. We cleaned up the house/yard/pool as best we could. Having water is great. We checked on friends around the neighborhood and all were doing well considering the circumstances.
Here is a picture of one of our less fortunate neighbors about a block away. We are pretty sure we had a tornado come through the subdivision. The roots of this tree are 4-10 feet off the ground.

Houston as a community has been great, lots of people helping other people, just spontaneous kindness. People have taken responsibility for their neighbors and strangers that need help.

Electricity, gas and ice are the top concerns in our area (in that order). I think the lack of access to enchiladas and quarter pounders are really taking their toll both physically and mentally.

Sunday, September 14, 2008


Still here

We are all OK and our house did not sustain any significant damage. We may have some roof damage but no leaks as far as we know.
We have lost power (and Internet) for miles around but we are not alone over 2 million people are right there with us.
Our neighborhood had some bad tree-house collisions. A house on the street directly behind us was destroyed by a tree in their driveway. This picture was from 2 streets away. It's sad but i don't think anyone was hurt.
will update when I can.

Friday, September 12, 2008


Ready to take a Ike

As those with electricity know, there is a hurricane aiming at Houston. This time it looks like it's not going to change it's mind at the last minute. Most people have been getting ready to deal with it for days now. HP had closed their offices today and most of the businesses have also closed.

There has been a steady stream of cars heading north and west to Dallas and San Antonio. We chose to hang here in our NW suburb at least for now. Our greatest fear is known as CalientePhobia or the fear of losing air conditioning. We are going to get a lot of wind and we have a lot of trees this = power line seeking projectiles. Sure the trees will smash some windows and cave in some roofs. Cars will surely be crushed but when we hear that electric pop and the AC and TV become just a memory the hairs on the back of our neck stand up then quickly get pasted down with sweat.

With highs in the 90s and lows in the 80s and the humidity somewhere around 200% (the hurricane forces twice as much water into each air molecule than it will hold) you can begin to understand the horror.

We are hoping for the best, we look OK now. I will post an update as long as the electricity and Internet hold out.

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