Home repair

Uh… Bob Dylan has an XM radio show, "Theme Time Radio Hour". Now, now I have a reason to subscribe to XM radio. Well, not really. Money is still tight. But I have to listen to Bob play "Momma Said Knock You Out" for Mother's Day:

Don't call it a comeback, he been here for years, rocking his peers, putting 'em in fear, making tears rain down like a monsoon, explosions overpowerin', over the competition LL Cool J is towering. LL Cool J — stands for Ladies Love Cool J.

But someday.

It just gets more and more exciting, no?

Still no ATM card, but I decided to celebrate my first paycheck by… cleaning the bathroom. Sponge, brush and Comet. I still think Comet is the cleaning product of the millennium. Everything else takes too long and leaves dirt behind. The bathroom was none too clean when I moved in, and I have not helped things, what with the ring I left in the tub when I took my first bath in weeks and the ring I left in the sink when I washed my hands after repairing my front brakes. The toilet is white again. I also had to remove a plug of… uh, something that clogged the throat of the drain, which was about as nasty as you are imagining, or remembering, right now. Perhaps the last occupant washed his or her hair in the sink.

And then I had to fix the drain plug lever, adjusting the ball and lever position and adding an O-ring to the screw cap so the threads would not bottom out before the ball was properly compressed.

And then I had to buy an aerator for the faucet. Why is it that about the first thing I do anywhere new is install or fix faucet aerators? I mean besides not wanting the faucet to splash water all over the crotch of my trousers, or waiting five minutes for a cup to fill so I can rinse and spit after brushing my teeth. What do people do with aerators? Are they unaware that they can be cleaned? Do they steal them for use in meth labs? Should aerators join pseudoephedrine behind the pharmacy counter at Wal-Mart, available only with picture ID, thumbprint and record checks?

One thing I have noticed about these kids (aside from the fact that the Captain and Tennille are definitely dealing) is that they know how to fix, clean or operate nothing more complex than a microwave. Setting the air conditioning at 60°, so constantly running, will freeze the heat exchanger and leave us to steam in an 80° apartment? You don't say! Putting a pan on the oven rack below a frozen pizza will keep the fire alarm from going off? You're kidding!

Baptist Keith believes in global warming. I know the leftists are promoting this pathetic "idea" (the successor plague to the population bomb, dioxin, DDT, tobacco, alcohol, nuclear winter, Alar and anti-communism) but this is actually encouraging. The far ends of the spectrum, left and right, even when advocating the same end, do so with such violently different motives that the meeting is usually utterly destructive. It will be tough to keep the anti-globalization jihad in formation when the first born-again Christian mounts the Earth First! podium and takes a sideswipe at homosexuality.

Oh, and the real reason not to see The Da Vinci Code.

While spinning around the Web, I noticed that two of the all-time great Star Trek episodes, "Shore Leave" and "Amok Time", were written by Theodore Sturgeon. One of the reasons that ST survived so long as it did in syndication purgatory was that "real" science fiction authors (i.e., writers of published short stories and novels) wrote many of the episodes. The most popular episode of the original series, "The City on the Edge of Forever", is a work by Harlan Ellison, right down to the style of the title. The Next Generation had greater budgets, quality control, and ensemble acting but the secret weapon for TOS was always the scripts.