Friday Night Hangover

 

When Betty and I took our morning lap around Schiller Park yesterday morning, circling the park, clockwise, on the perimeter sidewalk, we encountered the following, in order: (1) a disgusting pool of vomit that all joggers and walkers were steering clear of but that was of intense interest to Betty and other dogs; (2) an area of a flowerbed where the plants were crushed and uprooted; and (3) a car, which had lost part of a bumper and a hubcap, had white paint scrapes on the left front side, and was parked over the curb with a flat right front tire.

You didn’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to deduce that some irresponsible person got drunk Friday night, drove when they shouldn’t have, ran into something, “parked” their car at Schiller, toppled into the flowerbed, and then expelled the stomach poisons. I’m just surprised Betty and I didn’t see and smell a reeking figure passed out on the playground or under a tree.

What’s interesting is that, as of this morning when the photo above was taken, the car is still there. Perhaps the offender had a blackout and can’t remember where he/she left the car.  Or, perhaps the car was stolen by the offender, and the true owner doesn’t know where the car is.

So, I’m offering this post as a public service. If this is your car, it’s on the north side of Schiller Park. And if this post helps you retrieve it, how about making a decent contribution to the German Village Garten Club to compensate for the pretty flowerbed that got ruined as part of the entire escapade?

Advertisements

Smarter Than The Average Fridge

Recently I came downstairs in the morning, opened the refrigerator to get my customary glass of orange juice, and noticed that the juice was warmer than usual.  My internal sensors started sounding, and after a little checking I realized that the refrigerator didn’t seem to be cooling anything — or for that matter, working at all.

So, how to try to fix the problem?  The refrigerator is one of those big, multi-section units that was installed by the people who lived in this house before we bought it three years ago.  Given the constant advances in “smart appliance” technology, our refrigerator therefore isn’t at the head of the class, but it’s not like the simple old Norges or Amanas of my childhood, either.

It was a situation that called for some careful analysis.  After an initial examination of the device, I realized that the front display screen, which allows you to set the desired temperatures for the different sections, select cubed ice or crushed ice, and use a “power cool” feature, was illuminated.  I reasoned that that meant that the refrigerator was connected to a power source — which was a good thing because the refrigerator is much too heavy to actually move to visually check whether it was plugged in.  After feeling an initial flush of pride at my deductive powers, I then realized that the “0” in one temperature monitor part of the screen and the “FF” in an adjacent part of the screen were together spelling “0FF,” and I felt like an idiot.

I shook off the embarrassment.  A thorough examination of the interior and exterior of the refrigerator did not identify any switch or other method for turning the refrigerator back on, so the next step involved calling customer service — which was unavailable because it was a Saturday, and who would need to have a working refrigerator on the weekend?  Then it was on to the manufacturer’s website to see if it had any useful information.  There were dozens of tips on the website, but of course none that addressed our problem.  The best guess was to try to cut power to the unit, restart it a few minutes later, and see if it cycled back to the “on” position.  This allowed me to become better acquainted with the circuit breaker in the basement, but it didn’t work either.  At that point, we decided the best course was to just accept that the refrigerator wasn’t working, remove the food that was now at room temperature, and just wait until Monday to call for servicing.

On Monday, Kish called customer service, and was told that there probably had been some unnoticed overnight power surge or brief cutoff that caused the refrigerator to cycle to “off” mode, and she could restart the unit by pushing two of the buttons on the front panel simultaneously.  It worked, and we were back to having a functional refrigerator again.  I was a bit miffed, however.  Would it really have been so hard to have the two buttons to be pushed illuminated and blinking in some fashion, so we would have some clue about how to restart the device, or to have a message flash on the panel that gave us useful instruction?  Or, have clear guidance on the website advising what to do if your refrigerator is showing “0” and “FF” on the panel?  Shouldn’t a “smart” appliance provide such information under the circumstances?

Maybe I’m just mad because my refrigerator apparently is smarter than I am.

 

Sherlock Holmes And The Bag Of Dog Poop

Recently, when we’ve taken our morning walks around the Yantis Loop, Penny, Kasey, and I have often found unwelcome surprises at various places along the fence line.  They are bags of dog poop, carefully tied off yet left on the top of the fence posts.  I pick them up, carry them to the next disposal container, and toss them in.  And I always wonder:  who in the heck would do such a thing?

In The Sign of the Four, Sherlock Holmes explained, “when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”  What can we deduce from the poop bags?  First, we know the culprit has a dog and is sufficiently mobile to make it to various places along the Yantis Loop track; cat lovers, the physically infirm, and agoraphobes therefore need not apply.  Second, we know that the perpetrator has to be tall enough to reach the top of the three-foot-high fence posts and have the eye-hand coordination to tie off a bag of poop, which eliminates infants, toddlers, and the pooping dogs themselves.  Third, the miscreant can’t be a total jerk; if they were a complete reprobate they wouldn’t bag the poop in the first place.  Ergo, they must have some sense of social obligation.  Finally, the poop bags are small, suggesting that the dog is a tiny, yapper dog, the kind that most men despise.

From these clues, I deduce that the wrongdoer is a repressed husband who walks his wife’s appalling pocketbook pooch at her request, bags the poop while growing increasingly annoyed at the shrill barks, and then leaves the bagged poop on the fence as a last rebellious gesture before heading home to endure the tattered remains of his miserable, pathetic life.  It’s either that, or a wealthy but absent-minded New Albany philanthropist who leaves the bags to identify citizens who care enough about their community to dispose of bags of a strange dog’s poop, but then forgets to reward those decent, responsible, civic-minded folks.

What say you, Watson?