2008.12.24 Hanging the tree, losing the heat

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

I’ve got to get through this thing quickly because I have far too much to do. With my wife and daughter out of town for a few days, I was left in charge of decorating the house.

I think they pretty much laughed at the very idea and figure they will be hard at work themselves on Christmas Eve when they return.

I took the challenge seriously and spent a lot of time thinking about it. Like at 3:33 a.m. when I happened to wake up and the thought popped into my head.

I knew what I wanted to do. Take the old spindly fake tree from the basement, glue the sections together so they wouldn’t come apart, drill a hole through the trunk about half way up and suspend it on fishing line a couple of feet off the ground. They always complain about how short it is on the years we use that sorry excuse of a tree.

Ornaments would have to be tied onto the tree so they wouldn’t fall off when the tree was spun in circles.

I was thinking we had a smaller tree in the basement, also, and I made plans to attach that to the top of the other tree for a double tree effect.

So much for 3:33 a.m. thinking. The second, smaller tree doesn’t exist. The spindly thing has a metal column that can’t be glued. And the fishing line would be cut if it went through a metal opening.

In other words, it’s going to take a lot more time that I don’t have. There’s news to write, coaches to call, etc.

I don’t want to use duct tape, but I’m having to rethink this whole thing.

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Everybody knows that we lose enormous amounts of heat via the top of our heads, right? Or is that right?

No, it isn’t, according to a couple researchers from Indiana University. They traced the old 45 percent loss of body heat figure to a U.S. Army field manual written in 1970.

They say some faulty reasoning went into that conclusion. If that old heat-loss statement were true, hatless people would be just as cold as pantless people. That’s something we don’t even want to think about in this weather.

I sleep in a cold bedroom—intentionally—and my head is uncovered at night. I should have doubted the old theory on my own. If my body heat pours out of my head every night, I’d use up enormous amounts of energy just by sleeping.

My head feels just fine in a cold bedroom. I experimented with my foot last night—probably about 3:33. I stuck it out the side of the bed uncovered and it didn’t take long at all for the freeze to move in.

I tried a hand. It took longer, but it wasn’t too long before I wanted it back under the covers. But my head? I don’t want that under the covers. I don’t want ear muffs. It’s just fine the way it is.

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I walked into a place last week in Fayette and someone said, “So you don’t think much of Tom Saylor.”

I was taken aback. I had just met the man the week before and I really liked him. What did people read in my column last week?

After I talked to her about it, I discovered her statement was actually more along the line of, “So you don’t know much about Tom Saylor.”

That’s true, I was out of town for a lot of the Hudson streak. I lost track of Morenci football, not to mention Hudson.

So I really didn’t know anything about Tom, and, as I said, I wasn’t properly impressed when his name came up.

But when Tom and his wife, Colleen, visited the Observer, I really enjoyed the encounter. It should be fun talking with him this fall. I don’t know much about you, Tom, but I’m with you.

When we talked this week, he said he appreciated my perspective on high school football and his coaching, although maybe not as much as his wife enjoyed it.

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“If your feet are cold, put on your hat.”

– Walter Pitkin, Weston, Conn.

Now we’re back to heat loss again. This came from RulesOfThumb.org, a wonderful collection of rules for living that might be good and might be garbage. This one, we know, doesn’t make much sense. Besides, its hard to put your shoe on over the hat.

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Like I said earlier, I’ve got to wrap this up and move on.

I’m still seeing that suspended tree and now I’m visualizing a wreath hung from the bottom. I’ve gotta go.

  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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