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.

  • Play Practice
    DRAMA—Fayette schools, in conjunction with the Opera House Theater program, will present two plays Friday night at the Fayette Opera House. From the left is Autumn Black, Wyatt Mitchell, Elizabeth Myers, Jonah Perdue, Sam Myers (in the back) and Lauren Dale. Other cast members are Brynn Balmer, Mason Maginn, Ashtyn Dominique, Stephanie Munguia and Sierra Munguia. Jason Stuckey serves as the technician and Trinity Leady is the backstage manager. The plays will be performed during the day Friday for students and for the public at 7 p.m. Friday.
  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.rover
    CLEARING THE WAY—Road crossings in the area on the construction route of the Rover natural gas pipeline are marked with poles and flags as preliminary work nears. Ditches and field entry points are covered with thick planks in many areas to support equipment for tree clearing operations. Actual pipeline construction is progressing across Ohio toward a collecting station near Defiance. That segment of the project is expected to wrap up in July. The 42-inch line through Michigan and into Ontario is scheduled for completion in November. The line is projected to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas every day.
  • Front.geese
    ON THE MOVE—Six goslings head out on manuevers with their parents in an area lake. Baby waterfowl are showing up in lakes and ponds throughout the area.
  • 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).
  • 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.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.
  • Face Paint
    FUN NIGHT FUN—Savanna Miles sits patiently while Abbie White works on a face paint design Friday during the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Gracie Snead watches the progress after having spent time in the chair. Abbie was one of several volunteer painters, each creating their own unique look. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.

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