October 30, 2011
Missed it by That Much
While doing our Saturday morning running about, we noticed that the area powerline tree company had trucks parked in Hillboro. We surmised that they were awaiting the predicted storm. Although the storm was only project for 6-10" totals, it was to be a heavy, wet snow. That, combined with the trees having a lot of leaves left, should combine to create conditions ripe for many falling trees - right into power lines.
So with a prediction of 6-10" of snow, the snow started about 4 PM. By 7 PM we had 6" of the white stuff and I had gone out to shake the maple tree that we had planted by the shed. Being so small, I didn't want to risk it losing its leader. I also shoveled parts of the deck, at least to get Fuzzy to the cathouse that contained the cat box (set up Saturday afternoon). At 9 PM, I once again measured and we had gotten another 4.5", for a total of 10.5" of snow. The Weather Channel had changed its prediction to 6-12" of snow, so we figured it was about done. After shaking the tree again (sounds like a strange hobby doesn't it?), we went to bed.
This morning, at 5 we looked out and it was a WTF moment. We had gotten another 15" of snow (as measured where I had previously shovelled). Where the snow had packed down, it was an even 24 inches.
We started snow removal about 6 AM, broke for a quick breakfast about 8:30, and WS is still out there snow blowing. The snow is melting down by the ground, making it extremely difficult to snow blow. Luckily, we only experienced a couple of power flickers, but the power has stayed on.
A couple of days ago, we figured we would take the bikes up for storage in a couple of weeks. Now, we need a humongous warm up to get rid of most of the snow so we can get the bikes out and get them to storage.
The previous record for snowfall in all of October, in Concord, was 3 inches. Between the two snows, the official total there is at 14.4". Yep, we smashed a record that has stood for 140 years.
** Apologies to Klink for the title of the post.
October 29, 2011
The Weekend Pundit just fired up his woodstove for the season. Now he needsto get it together and find a new snowblower since we are supposed to get another 4-8" of the white stuff tonight.
I did a burn in run on the woodstove this weekend. Burn in runs are a very short, barely hot fire (let it get to 300 degrees and shut her down) to drive the moisture out of the soapstone. Soapstone is porous and will collect moisture during humid weather, and if you just build a roaring fire from the get-go, the soapstone will crack.
Wednesday night I started the first real fire, and I have started a fire every night since then. This weekend it will be goin all day, for both days.
WS called the wood guy and he will be delivering a cord of wood to another person who needs it. Fortunately that person has managed to scrape up a little bit of wood, because the wood guy can't deliver until the beginning of next week - just after the snow.
I only got to ride to work one day this week (Tuesday). We are hoping that Mother Nature relents and it warms back up for a couple more weeks before we have to take the bikes in for storage. At least warms up enough to take the snow off the ground so we can get the bikes to storage!
For those that really get into Halloween, you need to find a dog groomer that can do this.
Zombie poodle found thru BoingBoing.
October 28, 2011
First of the Season
3" of snow last night. I shoveled just before it quit so I wouldn't have to shovel this morning. Heavy wet stuff that was sticking to the road (couldn't see the lines) for the last 2 miles of my trip home from work.
This is the earliest "real" snow that I remember, but not by much. I distinctly remember at least 2 Halloweens where I was trying to dodge trick-or-treaters in the dark nights of driving snow.
And so it begins . . . .
October 23, 2011
CF Ride Recap
Last Sunday we went on the benefit ride for Cystic Fibroses. We started at the Manchester meeting place, met up with about 80 bikes, and departed for Gunstock rendevous. This was the 10th annual ride, so we assumed they had police escorts. that was not the case, which made the ride a bit, well, interesting, to say the least. I won't go into detail or admit any wrong-doing (just in case there are any law enforcement types reading this), but at one point, when we were stopped at a stop light, I may have remarked to WS "I've never broken so many traffic laws in a 35 minute period."
Ah well, we made it in one piece and got fed, while listening to a band that did a pretty good job of covering rock tunes (and, they trew in an original or two).
I did take fa few pictures, so let's get to it:
We stopped about 1/2 way thru the ride so folks could use the rest rooms and get coffee to warm up. It was in the low 50's, dark and windy, and apparently some people did not dress warmly enough. Me, I went with long underwear, jeans and heavy winter riding pants for the lower portion. My torso got t-shirt, heavy sweatshirt with a high neck, my heavy leather jacket. Then of course there were the lined gloves and neck gator, along with the lined leather hadband for my forhead and ears. I was nice and toasty warm. While others were running for hot drinks, I was taking off clothes.
This is a picture of the bikes lined up at the rest stop. We ended up about 1/2 in the pack. This is a picture to the right of me, with my bike being at the very left corner. WS's bike is the next one to the right.
An orange Street Glide had ended up directly behind me when we left the rest stop. Once we got to Gunstock, I saw it was one of two other lady riders in the group. Unfortunately the picture does not convey the true beauty of her bike - it has gold accents that change color at different angles and lighting.
Someone from another group (there were several groups that left from different parts of the state) had a beautiful bike that was painted in memory of 9-11. Whoever the artist was did a fantatstic job.
After the raffle drawings, we left and headed home. Fortunately this wasn't a group ride, so we made our way a litlle less enventful than the ride up. We had a good time, but if we participate next year, we will most likely find another starting spot or just ride up and meet everyone there so I am not (allegedly) making comments about traffic law breakage again.
October 22, 2011
How to Find a Book
Earlier this year there was the top 100 Science Fiction Books that I voted on. Many of my favorites didn't make it, but it had a lot of stuff I hadn't considered. Apparently someone made a huge flow chart (with a whole lot of decision points) to determine which of the 100 a person might enjoy. I took the interactive version and found that indeed, it did figure out my tastes and suggested the Gunslinger Series by Stephen King.
Having read the series, and owning all the books, it is a good choice. Now I have to figure out how to make it suggest something I haven't read.
Via Cop Car
October 21, 2011
Economy for Giving
During my (late) lunch today, I read the paper online and checked out the local TV station's website. A prominant article today was about the local foodbank being very low on food heading into winter and the holiday seasons. I immediately went directly to the food bank's website and made a donation that should feed a lot of families.
With the economy the way it is, we have been stepping up our charitable giving, both to personal acquaintances and to formal charities. We have already had cordwood delivered to two different homes, with a third is probably in the near future. We have volunteered to pay for chimney or funace cleanings for those less fortunate than we are.
We have donated toys (via toy runs) and cash (via motorcycle runs and websites). Additionally every kettle or selling table (Boy Scout, Veterans, Salvation Army, and othe rreputable organizations) we pass by gets cash. One day, during our wanderings, we passed Boy Scouts at 3 different extablishments selling pop corn. WS donated to each, without taking the popcorn. Each month there is somehting different we find to contribute.
No, we aren't rich, but we have always believed that it was our duty to help out those less fortunate. In times like these, we take that duty even more seriously. No, we don't claim this on our taxes. It is something we do voluntarily, not for a tax break (not to mention, we can't itemize anyway). Heck, we couldn't even "claim" a lot of it as I don't get receipts.
My reason for writing is not to brag about the charity, or look for kudos, but to challenge everyone to look to see where the help is really needed (the local food shelter, wood banks, electric bills, animal shelters etc), and help out just a little.
October 20, 2011
Over at Instapundit, this gem:
REPORT: Khaddafy killed.
UPDATE: Reader Charles Katek writes: “Are all spellings of his name dead? Or just that one?”
I do believe Harry has been away from the private sector too long when he says things like this:
"It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers, and that's what this legislation is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor."
Yea, the new Teacher's contract, with new pay raises, and new steps so more teachers can get pay raises, passed. Meanwhile, in the private sector, almost no one is getting raisses at all, and most are getting anti-raises; that is if they are lucky and still have a job.
Meanwhile, via Powerline.
Yep, the private sector is doing just dandy compared to the public sector.
October 15, 2011
Time to Ride for CF
WS and I will be at the annual Cystic Fibrosis ride tomorrow. Looks like it will be a nice, if windy, day - much better than the rain we had on the original ride date.
Be there if you can - $25 per rider, $15 per person. DD provides breakfast at the departing locations (R&R Cylces in Manchester is where we are leaving from) , and The Meat House provides lunch. Plus, we all get cool t-shirts.