November 17, 2000 A Look backward, or Filling the Gap
Friday November 17, 2000 12:50:45 am

The astute reader (acutally, any reader who took the time to make a quick scan of the page that linked you here) will note that nothing was added to this website for the entire month of October. Well, nothing except the poorly considered and short-lived so-called TOVlog. Sorry, that's gone. It just wasn't working and it made the main page look messy.

It seems, though that I have an entire month to try to recapture. Fortunately, since most of the month seems to have been forgotten, (I live such an exciting life that the sheer wonder of each new day effectivley overshadows the memories of the preceding day! Do you believe that? I didn't think so.) the task won't be quite as daunting as it sounds.

The month sailed by in a flash, but the mark of its passing remains. October in the midwest has brought autumn to us. The leaves have changed color and few now remain on the trees. The days have grown shorter and the air now has a bite.

Kroger and Nijal went to the vet for their yearly visit in the month of October. They both got their shots and Kroger got some pills. The vet was busy that morning and we, Kroger, Nijal, Ruth, Isaiah, and I waited in the examination room for about half an hour. Isaiah was pretty good for about half the time, but after that he started to get impatient. One of the walls of the room had been treated to one of the big wall-papered nature scenes that you don't see much of since the 70s and that helped hold his attention for a while.

"Where are the clouds, Isaiah?"


"That's right. Where are the rocks?"


Eventually, that wasn't good enough, though, and he wanted his cars. Ruth had brought some Hot Wheelstm for just such an eventuality, but then he wanted to run them on something like the exam table, or the little lavatory/counter with the tounge depressors and swabs on it.

The vet finally came and jabbed both the pets and we were on our way without a yelp or even a whiz on the exam table by Kroger.

The scout was finally equipped with new tires in the month of October. I had been examining different options and different tires and calling and looking around to try to get some cool looking tires while saving a few bucks for about three weeks when I finally just gave up and got some 31x10.50 "Trailhandlers" from Sears.

The woman who sold me the tires seemed pretty sharp, but I'm even less convinced now of the competence of the mechanics there than I was when it took them two and a half of my Saturday afternoon hours to put on four tires and align the front end. I didn't even want the alignment, but if I hadn't given them the extra $50 for it, the warranty would have been void.

Yeah, I didn't want the alignment because it drove about as straight as it cold with the old tires on it. And what do you think I got for that $50 I didn't want to spend? Now it pulls to the left.

The next Saturday started early. I wanted to be back at Sears at 8 am when the doors opened to get the stupid alignment business straightened out. I thought I'd take Isaiah with me. I figured he'd get a ride in the scout and that it shouldn't take that long just to re-align it. After getting the scout aligned, I had planned on going to our church building to help paint the bus barn.

Our congregation used to have a school bus they used to bring kids from all around the area to Sunday school back in the late 70s. Back then, we went to a different congregation so I can only vaguely remember riding the bus once, and I have no idea why they got rid of it, but the shool bus sized garage remains and even though all that it now holds is two riding lawn mowers, it's still called the bus barn.

Isaiah and I sat in the waiting room at Sears for over an hour before they even brought the scout into the garage to be looked at. Isaiah was pretty good, but he was getting fidgety. So was I. I mean, you'd expect the waiting area in a tire shop to have some car magazines, right? Maybe Car and Driver or Road and Track. Well, they had Undercar Maintenance Monthly which boasted such delightfully fascinating gems as "Catalytic converters- How often should they be checked?" and "Keep your shocks from getting shocking" and that was IT. Luckily Blues Clues was on to keep Isaiah entertained.

Finally, I called Ruth, to come get me and told the people at Sears that I would pick the scout up later and we left. Ruth kept Isaiah with her and they went to look at garage sales with her mother and aunt and I took the car and drove out to the church building to help paint.

When I showed up, there were four other guys there. I had thought there would be more people and apparently so did the guy who had been rounding up folks to help... Our goal changed based on the amount of painters we had and we decided we'd be happy if we coul djust get the roof painted since it was what needed it the most anyway.

As I drove up, one of the fellows had been mixing a ten gallonm bucket of the type of aluminum paint that might be used on the top of a motorhome- or an old metal roof. One of the guys had pulled his pickup truck around the side of the barn and had set up a ladder in the bed of it that led up onto the roof.

If the metal of the roof had been flat, the job would have been easy and we would have been done in a couple of hours. The metal of the roof, was not flat, though. It was corrugated for strengthening and the width of the flat spaces between the ribs was about ½ inch narrower than the width of our paint rollers. Needless to say, this discrepancy coupled with the gloppy thickness of the paint made the work slow going. Let me also point out right here that I was also the only one dumb enough to wear my new shoes to paint in.

When I went back by Sears at about 4:30 they apologized that they were unable to align my scout. Evidently the bozos in the garage simply key some numbers into an alignment machine and do what it tells them. Also, evidently they didn't have numbers for my scout, they had numbers that "should have been compatibel but weren't". Luckily for them, they refunded the money I paid for the alignment and assured me that my warranties would still be good, but made sure I understood "how important it is for me to get the car aligned somewhere else". Sheesh.

October is also, of course, the halloween month. Isaiah was a pirate. Ruth called him Pirate Pete when he was dressed up in his outfit and he would say "Piyat Pete!" He liked being a pirate. He even kept his little tricorn hat on most of the time! We didn't really go trick or treating. He went out in his outfit three time, once to Play Pals, once to the Harvest festival at the church Ruth's folks attend and on halloween night to go visiting relatives. We went by Ruth's folk's house, my Mom's and his extra grandma Wilma's.

Ocobter in a nutshell.
I'll try to be a little more timely in November...

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