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24 March 2015 @ 11:37 pm
The Hitchy and Scratchy Show  
While madly putting systemic treatment around all the roses last weekend, I wish I'd remembered the bigger picture. Now I'm wondering if all the scratches on my arms will be healed by Saturday. My right arm currently looks as if I used it to break up a cat fight. Something like a falconer's glove is what you really need for that kind of work. :(

Last week's bicycling was Epic Fail. Tuesday was great, but Wednesday I notice that the rear tire was kind of soft. Slow leak, or just a fluke? I removed something (glass fragment?) from the tire, pumped it up, and hoped for the best, but 17 miles later the flat was undeniable. I changed the tire and returned to the office. On Friday, I got another flat, just 1.5 miles from the end of my ride. The sun was going down, so I changed that one at hyperspeed to avoid getting locked inside the parkway by an overzealous ranger. On Saturday, I got a flat 8 miles into the ride, and then a second one 4.5 miles later. I walked home the rest of the way after that, which was just as well. Clearly, those innertubes were just cannon fodder.

After three sessions of fixing flats (including rubbing the inside of the tire, the wheel rim, and the tire liner), I could not find the likely culprit. I even spent a lot of time scrutinizing the outside of the tire (and realizing I needed my reading glasses). Still nothing. My husband looked it over later and didn't see anything. By then, I was pretty fed up, so I paranoid-swapped the tire out for a different one. I figured I could go over the faulty one with a magnifying glass at some point if I had to. Monday's ride? Gloriously uneventful, apart from realizing that I'd forgotten to fill my water bottles and only had the leftover 1.5 inches of water from the previous ride. Gah.

Awhile ago, I decided that our kids (our son, at least) should become familiar with some of the classic, post-apocalyptic-type movies. Bladerunner and Brazil are out, waiting to be watched, and I rented Mad Max from Netflix. Well. About halfway through the movie, which was oddly campy, HalfshellHusband and I realized that we'd never actually SEEN Mad Max before—we'd been thinking of the second one. So, that was a total failure. OTOH, the second one is now in my Netflix queue...

Speaking of our son, he occasionally gets caught up in online, fanfiction role-play writing, and he's been highly involved lately. His most recent creation is pretty hilarious—a 73-year-old, cantankerous blind man who has a habit of stealing vehicles and joy-riding in them, and who considers himself a pretty good driver apart from random obstacles getting in the way. Such as, buildings. It's funny—I've done round-robin writing before, and it typically degenerates into utter crack even before finishing the first round. The stuff my son works with seems to have more coherency. Perhaps the larger story is laid out by moderators, and the participants work their way through known plot-points toward a stated conclusion? I'll have to ask him.

Well, it's bedtime again, since my plan to write this update earlier today did not pan out. See you on the flip side!

Kizzyxo_kizzy_xo on March 25th, 2015 11:02 am (UTC)
That's so bizarre about the tires. The tires on my Jeep tend to do the same thing (i.e., the tire pressure light randomly flashes on and stays on). My mechanic says it's not the tires themselves but the rims -- the older the rims, the more their edges tend to warp and not stay flush, so gaps develop. The only way to remedy it is either to buy new rims or get somebody to put small metal "placers" in the gaps. I had the latter done on three tires -- the fourth is holding its own.

I ran across some kind of round robin story the other day. I wish I could remember what writing did sponsored it. I haven't done one of those in years. I think it'd be fun :)

The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Cyclinghalfshellvenus on March 25th, 2015 05:04 pm (UTC)
This probably really was the tire. While I was out on the bike path on Saturday, I tried to look it over as fiercely as possible, and thought I saw something in the gap where I'd taken out the shard earlier. I got out the mini pocket knife I carry for exactly that reason, but I couldn't be sure I got it out. Because

Me: *concentrate on focusing, eyes. Clarify! Clarify!*
Eyes: Ahahahahah! Like that's a real thing...

Edited at 2015-03-25 05:05 pm (UTC)
bleodswean: ariesbleodswean on March 25th, 2015 03:25 pm (UTC)
What crazy biking adventures!!!! Do you wear those spandex shorts?

Sorry you're all scratched up. How many roses do you tend???? We get so little sun up here that I can't grow bowers and bowers of them which makes me sad.

It was a sheer parenting joy to turn our kids onto films that mean something.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on March 25th, 2015 05:10 pm (UTC)
Yes, I wear the spandex shorts! Mostly because I need the extra padding in the seat, and also because they don't bunch up in the groin as you bike. They look stupid, but they work well.

We used to have about 80 rose bushes (!), because the previous owner had overplanted. I removed about 25 of them in part of the yard we couldn't even see except from the upstairs playroom. I hated to do it, but the maintenance was outrageous. We've removed (or accidentally killed) all of the climbing roses along the back fence-- there were 6 of those. Still have about 52 left. The pruning and the fertilizing are where it really kills us. My husband slowly does most of the pruning (except the rose trees-- I do those), and I do all of the fertilizing treatment as the smell of it makes him sick.

I wish I could get more enthusiasm from our kids for some of those movies! My daughter is "meh" on most things that are not chick-flicks or drama, my son doesn't so much like drama, and none of the rest of us like chick-flicks! I think he'd definitely like Brazil, though, and probably Bladerunner. And Mad Max 2, which that movie was not!
Direst Ryl: Spirit of Imbolcryl on March 25th, 2015 03:32 pm (UTC)
Brazil is one of my favorite movies. It's the reason I have a huge crush on Terry Gilliam's brain. I wasn't too impressed with Bladerunner but I blame that on the hype.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on March 25th, 2015 05:11 pm (UTC)
I love Brazil, though you never know which version you're getting unless you have the DVD. There are about 3-4 different endings!

I really like Bladerunner, too, though I think the theater release is better. The director's version is one of those cases where you discover why editors are so crucial. ;)
cindytsuki_no_bara on March 26th, 2015 02:54 am (UTC)
i remember watching mad max and being completely baffled as to how they got from that one to the second one. also the second one was much better.

there's going to be a new mad max in i think may, and i am VERY EXCITED. (tom hardy plays max. i'm easy that way.)

anyway. it's really cool that you and your kid can watch post-apocalypse movies together. and i'm super curious about his round-robin writing! i've been part of story-written-by-committee twice, and man, we really needed at least the semblance of a plot to follow. we needed someone we all agreed was in charge.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on March 26th, 2015 03:30 am (UTC)
That probably explained why watching the first Mad Max was a "Huh? What, now?" kind of experience. So campy, more bizarre than directly post-apocalyptic. But the second? Oh, yes. I used to consider the three films above the various flavors of post-apocalypse (dry, depleted wasteland, acid-rain degeneration, and explosion of worthless beaurocracy), though I suppose Waterworld would be the obvious fourth. Except that I never saw it. :O

It's funny, the role-playing writing he's doing seems to be more directed toward a shared goal than, "Let's take these characters and see where it goes." That last kind (both of the round-robins I've tried) seem to result in people outdoing each other with the "Let's throw in a monkey wrench and see how the next person handles it!"

Kind of like Idol Exhibit B, where the participants each supplied two prompts. Some of us fell into the "What will inspire writers?" approach, while others went right for, "What will confound other people?" choice. o_O