When the Bough breaks

We have a few baby books scattered around the house that use the word “bough” instead of branch. I find it curious I’ve only ever encountered the word in baby books and nursery rhymes. I find this particularly ludicrous because we’re using these books to teach language.

Maybe I should embrace it. Maybe I’ll start using it all the time.

“oh look! An Oriole!”
“where?”
“On the bough of the Maple!”

 

Ford Service

I really enjoy my Ford Fusion. And, until recently, it’s been problem free. This changed a few weeks ago when I noticed something funky happening with my transmission. I brought it to a local dealer, Hammonasset Ford, for an investigation.

The bad news? I needed a new $4,000+ transmission.
The good news? It was covered under my extended warranty. Woo!

The repair work took about 10 days which included some time waiting for insurance assessment etc. In the interim, I was given a rental car. Like any warranty claim the interactions were stressful at times, but overall I would describe the experience as smooth. I got the car back about a week ago and all’s sunny.

Yesterday morning Sander pointed out the really bad news:

WITHOUT MY PERMISSION THE DEALERSHIP PUT ONE OF THOSE STUPID LICENSE PLATE ADVERTISEMENTS ON MY CAR.
NOT COOL HAMMONASSET FORD!

I am passionately against those stupid license plate advertisements.
Unless under extreme duress, I assure you I will never return to Hammonasset Ford.

Not cool Hammonasset Ford. Not cool.

The Red Headed Woodpecker

When it comes to bird watching, Jen and I clock in somewhere around Vireo. We know what a vireo is, but I wouldn’t be able to pick one out of a lineup of lookalikes. BUT, when we see a new bird we are quick to jump up, take pictures, and look up the details in our Peterson guide (thank you Tom & Mykal).

So it was a few weeks back when Jen, in a startle, pointed to the window and exclaimed “WHAT IS THAT!?”

That, it turns out, is a Red Headed Woodpecker. What made this an extra exciting find is that the Peterson Guide didn’t even reference is as local to Connecticut. AND, where it was local, it was listed as uncommon!

Was this a truly once in a lifetime sighting?!?! Well, no. The bird came back twice over the next few days. BUT! when we notified our local Audubon society, they got Giddy. We sent them our pictures and they promptly posted them on their Facebook page.

Further, they sent our address (with our permission) out to a few of their birding colleagues who voiced an interest in coming to our street to see if they could also find the bird.

I think it’s marvelous that we can be surrounded by unique gems of nature, but be completely oblivious to them. If this bird had visited us a few years ago, we might not have noticed at all. And if we had, it might have been not much more than a momentary curiosity.

I’m glad we were able to celebrate its uniqueness. Thanks for visiting us, Red Headed Woodpecker!

Father Time

In celebration of J.Atlas’ first birthday we hung up 12 pictures, one from each month of his first year. Carrying him in my left arm, I walked down the row of pictures pointing to each one and saying “Johnny!” When we reached the end of his pictures, there was a picture of Jen and me. He touched the picture of me and said “Dada”

It was heart melting! I was startled and touched far more than I ever could have expected.

Then he pointed to a clock on the mantel and said “Dada”

Punk.

Spelling Bee

I’d like to witness a spelling bee where a kid, having no clue on the proper spelling of a word, decides to filibuster the event.

Moderator: Your word is “stichomythia”
Kid: May I hear it used in an example?
Moderator:  The author was well acquainted with classical drama, as may be seen in his use of stichomythia.
Kid:  Stichomythia. S – T – I – T – C- H – O – M – I – N -S – T – L- A – E – R – J – I – A – L – C – D – W – W – E – I – O – S – E – I – O – S – V- B – K – Y – P – W – Q – 2 – X – L – L – M – O – I – D -K – F – H – A …

Hand Update

Warning: pictures and recounts of mildly gnarly wounds to follow

ANNOUNCEMENT

Remember when my hand got caught in a roller and my fingers got smooshed? Yesterday, the pinky fingernail finally fell off! Hurrah! This is exciting because until now there was a constant risk of it getting snagged on something and causing a frustrating zip of pain or a tearing of the nail bed. Now instead of risk of injury, it just looks really weird-sauce.

The ring finger is mostly healed. There’s a mega lump on the top and side of the front knuckle that is slowly going away, but otherwise it’s okay. And despite much concern, my guitar playing is mostly unaffected.

Fun fact: did you know the end of your fingers are officially referred to as the Distal interphalangeal joints?

Extra fun fact: In traditional scrabble, at 15 letters long “Interphalangeal” would span the full length of the board. That means it could potentially hit THREE triple word scores. The E and G would fall on double letters. You’d obviously have to build it off of conveniently placed other letters since your tile rack is only 7 letters deep, but the potential score is 648 points.

 

4 spt

Two minutes of brushing is four seconds per tooth. Considering that the inside edges are suppose to be done with floss, that sure does seem like a long time per tooth. J.Atlas has three teeth. That’s twelve seconds. Waaay too long if you ask me.

Doesn’t two-three seconds per tooth sound like it would be plenty?

Ford Fusion

Recently I hit 100,000 miles on my 2012 Ford Fusion. Always an exciting event, these mileage milestones demand close observation in those last few miles. Jen and I were glued to the odometer as the tenths ticked by:

99,999.7
99,999.8
99,999.9
100,000

WOOOO!! EXCITING! Wait… what?

The tenths position disappeared. Ford chose to limit the digital display to six characters instead of allowing for seven. This is mildly annoying. I used the tenths place all the time. “Take exit 42 in 6.5 miles” Dang it.  Sander pointed out that I could still use the trip gauges, but I reset these at gasoline fill-ups and oil changes to monitor the car’s performance.

Ford sold about 250,000 Ford Fusions in 2012. If we guess that the extra character would have cost Ford 5 cents more per display (maybe this is high) then in 2012 alone, their decision to use one less odometer character saved them $12,000. BUT, that’s only one year. I bet they used the same display in proximal years and similar models. This four second decision by some random engineering manager in Detroit could have saved Ford $100k.

I think I would have made the same decision.

Good call, Ford.