Tuesday, January 22, 2008

What is 655 in roman numerals?

CXV? Is that is?

Whatever it is, this is that numbered post. Who the HELL (or for that matter, heaven?) would have thought that I'd ever have had this much to say on an ongoing basis? I suppose that once the ball got rolling it was pretty much all downhill, which doesn't really say much for the overall quality of what's going on here at NAY, but it is what it is, and that's all that it is.

Thus endeth the philosophy lesson for the day.


Tinkerbell's windshield wiper juice shooter machine doesn't work. This is a problem at this time of year, when the salty leavings of last weeks storm preparations get enmisceled (is that a word? It ought to be) in a slow drizzle, creating a soupy gak that, when sprayed onto the windshield from the whizzing tires of leading cars or those passing by creates a hazy schmear that doesn't wipe clean without generous applications of the stuff that comes from properly-working windshield wiper juice shooters.

Let us just say that it is very very difficult to drive under such conditions. I can't imagine having to do it in the dark. At one point during my drive this morning I was tempted to pour out my bottled water onto the window while driving, just to get a tiny bit better peek at what lay ahead of me, traffic-wise.

I suspect that it was something like that course of action that led to SOMEONE having a very bad accident indeed on one of the beltways around these here parts. An onramp was closed down this morning. Pity that it was the onramp I wanted to use to get onto 540. Oh, I should have known something was amiss when I spotted the helicopter hanging stationary in the air just about smack dab above where I knew the onramp would be, but I motored on, hoping that the 'something' would not involve an impedance to my progress.

Alas, it did. There were police cars aplenty, and flashy lights, and what looked like about a ton of sand strewn on the ramp, but I couldn't get a really decent look at what was going on up there. Not even when I U-turned and went under the ramp could I see much except a big ol' SUV sitting crosswise on the ramp and a number of be-hatted Troopers looking very deep in thought indeed.

When I go past scenes like this, I almost always think "well, I guess my day is going better than theirs," and in many ways that's a soothing thought.


Saw a really weird accident this weekend while going to Roanoke. To understand the scene you'd have to understand that Roanoke and environs are in a very hilly area, mountainous, even, and that the habit of the residents and builders of towns has been to put things where there is a smidge of flat ground. Entire towns are slotted neatly into a few acres of semi-level surface area, houses climb the sides of hills above the old mills, and the railroad tracks that couple together the hamlets and such are set against the slopes in such manner that they frequently have a very long dropoffs to one side of the tracks.

So, occasionally, I guess , it is the practice of the locals to park cars alongside the tracks. Why, I don't know, maybe there's a party nearby and that's the best spot they could get. Whatever the reason, on this day there was more than one car parked way the heck up a steep hill, right next to the tracks, and right on the gravel trackbed.

It seems as though the gravel must have given way under one car, for it had tumbled DOWN the hill. Oops. Tumbled down with people in it. Oopsier. Tumbled down with people in it, who were standing next to the car scratching their heads and chatting up the Troopers. Oopsiest. The passenger doors were flung wide and crumpled, the driver's side I would imagine received similar treatment though I couldn't see it as I drove past. There was quite the crowd surrounding the scene; it was big excitement, for sure. As a matter of fact, there were people at the top of the hill in a second car looking WAAAY down at their buddies, and no doubt wondering if their car was next to go over the edge.

If I was an imaginative type, I would think that maybe something naughty was going on that morning, because on the way back the next day that second car was still next to the tracks. Abandoned? Hmmm. Methinks maybe some folks got carted of to the hoosegow for dangerous practices, or maybe they scuttled FAST when Mr Trooper Man started up the hill after them, looking for more information.

There are a lot of places to get lost in those mountains. I wonder if the Trooper found his prey.

The long and short of this is that twice in three days I've had the chance to think that my day was going far better than someone else's. Is that selfish, or just self-aware?


One last thing about cars: Tinkerbell has enough clearance to pass safely over a newly-dead deer.

This, I believe, MORE than makes up for the windshield wiper juice problem.


Make it a great afternoon, if you don't mind. See you around these parts tomorrow.

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