Friday, December 14, 2007

Snow Day

I meant to post this yesterday. Really I did.
I left for work like a good little soldier despite the fact that the sky seemed to be dumping snow at a movie-machine- fake alarming rate...mostly because I work for people who believe that if you live in the Northern Tier you need to put your big girl panties on and deal with bad weather and I wasn't in the mood for recrimination.

I drove about halfway to Mansfield at around 27 MPH. Yes, I'm that person in front of you with a 10 year old car and no 4 wheel drive. You can hate on me all you like, after you pass me I'll pull up behind you when you end up in the ditch and hold your head until the ambulance comes.
But wonder of wonders, I was diverted with a phone call and given leave to return to Tranquility Base and I did so. Even cranked it up to 30 or so. I barely made it up the steep street that leads to mine, scurried in the house, and never stuck my nose outside for the rest of the day. So no, I didn't take the picture above. Someone from the Grand Canyon Snowmobile Club did.

I love a snow day. Read books, did my nails, took a nap, took another nap. The huz was also home, doing his thing. I was given stern direction not to use him as 'blog fodder', so I can't say much about him. I'm not allowed.

Besides, he hasn't done much that was funny lately. But we've had our adventures.

When we were first married, we lived in a ridiculously small apartment. In fact, the last college dorm room I lived in (Naugle Basement, Messiah College. Holla!) was roughly 2 1/2 times the size of this place. We had just enough room for a tiny table, a couch, a double bed, and a TV on a pressboard stand that could be turned so it was in our 'bedroom', or in the 'living room'. The building itself had been a mansion at one time in the dimly distant history; when the property was sold and subdivided to make a development of homes we would never be able to afford, the old house was also subdivided into apartments. It is a three story house. They managed to make it into THIRTEEN apartments. The bedroom portion of the apartment actually stuck out from the side of the building, with supports underneath it; it looked like a treehouse. A treehouse built over a parking lot.

So naturally, we got a water bed.

I worked for a moving company and someone in my Florida office offered me this bed. My agreeing to this involved the acceptance of a couple of half-truths involving ease of assembly that, in retrospect, I am ashamed I fell for. The bed arrived, a pile of unrecognizable lumber and a headboard that could best be described as 'redneck chic'. (Kind of like this one, only with roses painted on the mirror. Can you hear the strains of 'Sweet Home Alabama' in the background? Thought so.)
We put the bed together in about an hour. It was startling; it didn't look like much in a pile but assembled, it commanded a full 1/3 of our apartment, effectively filling the 'bedroom' alcove. I wasn't about to turn back now; I spread out the liner, and then it was time to deal with the mattress. We squared it up, hooked up the filling hose deal and connected it to the mattress and let 'er rip. Wow, waterbed mattresses fill up pretty fast. And somewhere between quite a lot of water and a metric buttload of water, we realized, hey, it might not be a bad idea to check this mattress and make sure it doesn't, you know, have any holes in it.
The Huz and I hauled up a corner of the mattress to have a look, and sure enough, there was a bit of water between it and the liner. There was a large hanging tag on the spout to the mattress so I searched it for some helpful advice. It said something like this:
So I got a tea towel and jammed it in there. Fifteen minutes later, I heard a squirting noise that filled me with dread. I ran around the bed looking for the leak, heart pounding. But it wasn't my bed. It was my downstairs car-obsessed neighbor out for his 11:30pm car wash. Relieved, I hauled up the mattress again.
I had a feeling at this point it wasn't condensation; the tea towel was floating on a gently wafting eddy of water. Crap. I started thinking about the 'liner', the sheet of plastic that stood between this moment and me losing my security deposit. I took out the 'Magic Drain', this contraption that was supposed to drain a waterbed via the kitchen faucet, and hooked it up.
One thing the Magic Drain folks fail to tell you is that it takes HOURS to drain a waterbed. We lay down on the floor and tried to sleep with the whole thing running. I only slept long enough to have a dream that seemed very much like Airport '77, complete with singing nuns and Darren McGavin. At 5 o'clock in the morning the mattress was sufficiently flaccid and we shut off the water. I figured, hey, there isn't that much in there, I'll just drag it into the shower and drain it.
Here's your science lesson for the day, kids: water is heavy. Water in a giant plastic sack laying in a wooden frame two feet above the ground without handles hates you and wants you to die. We dragged it, we pulled it, it fell on us and we crawled out from under it, I wrestled with the drain opening for half an hour and finally slashed it open with scissors and let it drain, and dragged the whole mess into the dumpster at dawn. Then we called Dial-a-Mattress or somesuch and got a proper bed.
I realize that isn't a Huz story. But its the one that came to mind on the way to The Day The Whole Fire Department Came to Our House. Next time, perhaps.
Please visit and see who else all your base belong to.


Anonymous said...

I'm the huz. I'm not really that evil. Really. :) It's just that the missus is getting all popular and what-not now and I don't want all our secrets out all over Al Gore's creation, if y'know where I'm coming from?

Diesel said...

Just don't cut the tags off that mattress. I've got my eye on you.

Padre Giovanni Trigilio said...

GREETINGS from Harrisburg

Saw your nice comments on Catholic Converts blog space


Father John Trigilio

Jonny's Mommy said...

The huz should be written about more. I declare it! And it shall be done! For he is funny and provides much fodder for humor blogs!

the frogster said...

We got a waterbed, filled it up and drained the well (we were renting half a house in an out-of-the-way place. We ran into the landlord and he said for some reason the water pressure was gone. He said, "It wouldn't do anything like that for no reason. You haven't been using the hose to fill a swimming pool, have you?"

We laughed and laughed and laughed.

We never told him about the waterbed.

Dan said...

I drove about halfway to Mansfield at around 27 MPH.

Oh ! So YOU'RE that person tailgating me! Yes, tis true. I HATE slippery roads and usually prefer hiding in my house with the curtains drawn when the first snowflake falls.

Thanks for visiting my blog yesterday. That was way cool of you.

Shieldmaiden96 said...

Yes, we didn't feel guilty about not getting it cleared either, what with the basement full of mold, substandard wiring, and windows so old some of the panes were still hand-blown. Though in retrospect, if we'd been successful in filling it we probably would have done structural damage. I don't think our little 'treehouse' bedroom could have taken the weight!

Believe me, I tailgate no one in this weather! Plus there aren't many vehicles on the road slower than a 1996 Saturn with 176,000 miles on it.
But I live in the Twin Tiers, and the people up here have been driving cars/trucks/cranes/snowmobiles/farm machinery in snow since they were seven. So they have no tolerance for my downstate 'Rt 202 is plowed to blacktop immediately unless there is a state of emergency' pokeosity.

Mr. Fabulous said...

I appreciate your willingness to hold my head in the ditch.

You are a good friend.

Shieldmaiden96 said...

Not only willing, but trained and state-certified!

Potty Mummy said...

Shield Maiden, loved the bit about slashing the mattress. And frankly, I can't believe you waited so long to do it... Reminds me of the time Husband and I moved into a flat so small our sofa-bed wouldn't fit up the stairs, so instead of donating it to charity / giving it to friends / something else sensible, HE (yes HE) decided to cut it in half.

But that's another post...

Shieldmaiden96 said...

I give him credit for the effort; we also disassembled a regular couch to get it out of a small apartment because the landlord told us we could put anything in the dumpster "as long as it fit".
Oh yes, we made it fit. Took all day.