Monday, July 23, 2007

Minutiae and Majoriae (Is That A Word...?)

On the Major side: The top goes down on the Plymouth again!!! It required a trip to Convertible Specialists in San Gabriel and hanging out there almost three hours (my Carl Hiaasen book kept me entertained, as did peeking out into the shop at the other cool old cars there), but damn, all it needed was a proper charging of the hydraulic system, the top motor is in great shape! Turns out that a couple of air bubbles had escaped the attention of my mechanic (who told me up front he was not an expert at these things). Eventually the bubbles joined forces at some point and were enough to stop the top from going up. So the 38 year old convertible top motor lives. Go, Detroit steel! I've been running the top up and down practically non-stop over the last week to really test it, before I proceed with the next step...body plugs, carpet and PAINT! The upholstery and rechroming will have to wait for now, but J. got me some new quilted moving pads that I'm going to fit as seat covers, sew holes for the seat belts and add some grommets to tie the things down with. That'll work!

The other day N. and I had gone on a foray for my $100.00 shoes that I have to wear. I hate buying shoes, just like I hate buying tires. Very expensive and not fun. As we came out of the store and were getting into the car, I see out of the corner of my eye something odd--a drunken bum...on a scooter. One of those electric ride-on things. Humorously surreal, as it's around 10AM and he's cruising down the sidewalk in a decidedly wobbly manner, a can of beer clenched in his fist. He stops. Suddenly, he bellows, "MAN, I'D MARRY YOU JUST FOR YOUR CAR!" I make the mistake of laughing, and off he goes--apparantly, 'extra-damned-loud' is his normal volume level. And he's a big guy, so he can really YELL. He goes on and on about what a great car it is, how much he loves those old cars, yada, yada, yada... People a block away are turning their heads to see what all the damned hollering is about. Geez. As we drive away, N. says, "He was LOUD!" No kidding.

As far as the little stuff goes, tonight I opened the enclosed part of Ace the rabbits' hutch to check for eggs, since the hens LOVE to go in there. Not only are there eggs, but Sugar the Buff Laced Polish hen is in there, looking offended. She's a sweetie, so I reach in to pet her a bit and say hello. Damned if she didn't bite the heck out of me! Not just a little warning peck, either--a full on BITE! Didn't know she had it in her.

We took N. down to Huntington Beach yesterday. The conditions were a bit odd, what with the monsoon conditions coming up out of Mexico. The surf was a little bit higher than normal but was WAY fiercer than normal, too. Rip currents aplenty, and the lifeguards were out in full force. I took N. out into the surf about knee deep while J. stayed on the beach blanket. Every few minutes there'd be a wave that would come in MUCH farther and taller than the others, and it was amusing to see the people that had arrived on the beach and misread the waterline, placing their chairs and whatnot too close to the water. Surprise! Also entertaining were the 30-something Hispanic guys who had brought along a huge killer whale pool ride-on toy...their kids tried it out and quickly decided it didn't work in the waves (smart kids). Well, the DADS swaggered on out to the surf, laughable inflatable toy in hand. Their wives stayed in the beach chairs, watching...and you didn't even need to speak Spanish to understand what the ladies were telling the guys.

Sure enough, the macho men stuck that toy between their knees and ran out into the surf...which had pulled out a bit...remember those once-in-a-while huge waves?


Tumbling men! Everyone on the beach laughed.

By the way: beach showers are NOT for lounging in like you haven't had a wash in three weeks, especially when other people are stacked up 10 deep waiting for you to finally hose the sand out of your crotch and move along. The next time I see someone doing this I shall forcibly drag them out of the beach shower by one ear. Face it, you are never going to get all that sand out in a piddly beach shower anyway.

Also, kudos to the seagull who intercepted a Frisbee in mid-flight, thinking it was a slice of bread thrown into the air. One of the guys playing Frisbee had to hike down the beach a bit to retrieve it. We finally got out of there just as it started to rain--fat, warm, large tropical drops.

That night, around 11PM, long after N. was asleep, I heard a sudden commotion out front, banging and laughing. I opened the door to see what was going on...to see some guy on his hands and knees on TOP of the cab of J.'s truck. He's laughing and so are his buddies, who are dashing around in the street. Great, I figure, drunk teenagers. I call J., who had also heard the noise and was on his way out to see what it was. We both go out onto the porch, where J. asks the guy (a whole lot nicer than I would have) to get off his truck.

"Sorry man, a DOG chased me up here!" The kid calls back. Well--! That's about the last thing we expected to hear... His buddies have taken refuge in their car, where a tail wagging, smiling pit bull has them cornered. J. and I are laughing and J. goes out to see if the dog had tags (it didn't). The dog was perfectly friendly, the kid and his buddies obviously saw A PIT BULL OMG and freaked out. Once J. got out there and showed the kid it was harmless the kid climbed down, climbed into his friends' car and they split.

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