Saturday, September 09, 2006

A Big Day, and Felberpalooza nostalgia

Today was one of my Big Days.

If you're not familiar with the term, a Big Day is a day (usually a Saturday) when I do more than one thing in a coordinated sequence. Like, say, a trip to the dentist, a haircut, and a car wash. Or today's busy schedule: blood donation, oil change, car wash, porch sanding/scraping/priming, and yard work.

Well, that was the plan, anyway. I started with a blood donation, where I dealt with almost all new (to me) people, including a nurse who was a bit slooooow and who managed somehow to lose my donor ID card. From there I jumped in the car and caught the end of Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!, but it wasn't an episode with Adam in it. (Hey, he's busy.) Next I was off to Jiffy Lube for an oil change and car wash, then off to the house to continue working on the porch - first stopping for Chinese food, as is my post-donation tradition. My sister (who is in town for the weekend) walked over to visit the house, but I wasn't in a position to have her help me with anything. After she left I settled in to a long afternoon of scraping, sanding, and priming.

In previous sessions I had managed (with assistance from friends) to scrape, sand, and prime about 2/3 of the porch. What remained was the central third, with wood that ranges from "solidly painted" to "ready to begin rotting". Working with it was extremely tedious, and as the day wore on I reminded myself of my motto for home renovation (the ever-true "The perfect is the enemy of the good") and determined that what I had done was good enough. A quick sweeping and mopping and I was ready to begin priming - just as the rain clouds started to roll in. Primer goes on fast, and dries in 15 minutes, but now I had a deadline to work against.

I quickly applied the primer to the wood that had taken nearly five hours to prepare. I slapped on the final bits in front of the front door, cutting off that point of entry for at least a day, at about 7:00. As the wind picked up ("The wind will help it dry faster," my neighbor optimistically suggested) I carted my supplies back into the house and washed off my brush and pad while listening to the start of the second hour of "A Prairie Home Companion". Listening to Garrison Keillor croak his way through a song (yes, he can't sing, at least not sing well, but neither can Lou Reed, and that never stopped him, so why should it stop anyone else?) I was suddenly taken back to the evening of the second day of the Felberpalooza, as Ann, Dee and I sat in a little Italian restaurant eating cheese ravioli and drinking diet colas and discussing National Public Radio programs.

It was a weird and wonderful experience, to be able to sit there and discuss such things without fear of meeting with blank, bemused looks of incomprehension or snide comments sbout my clearly Liberal taste in radio programming. Certainly, there will be other venues where I will find myself in the company of like-minded people, but there was something special about the Felberpalooza, a chance to, as Murray put it, "meet old friends for the first time." Cooper, Ann, Dee, Adam, Murray, George, George's Sister, George's Sister's Husband, little Cody - I miss them all.

At 7:20 it began to rain. So much for the yard work. I finished washing up, packed the remains of my Chinese food, and headed back to my mom's house.

1 comment:

marc said...

Have you ever considered doing your own radio program for NPR in NEPA? With all the techies you work with, I think you have that end covered. All you have to come up with is the content.

Stranger things have happened on radio.