2008.12.24 Hanging the tree, losing the heat

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.

-0-

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.

-0-

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.

-0-

“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.

-0-

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.web
    NICE WORK—A spider remains at the center of a web, awaiting visitors, during a moist morning last month. The was built in front of Eagle Funeral Home in Morenci.
  • Front.bridge Cross
    STEP BY STEP—Wyatt Stevens of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge Sunday during the Michigan DNR’s Great Outdoors Jamboree at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The Tecumseh Boy Scout Troop constructed the bridge again this year after taking a break in 2016. The Jamboree offered a variety of activities for a wide range of age groups. Morenci’s Stair District Library set up activities again this year and had visits with dozens of kids. See the back page for additional photos.
  • Front.bridge.17
    LEADING THE WAY—The Morenci Area High School marching band led the way across the pedestrian bridge on Morenci’s south side for the annual Labor Day Bridge Walk. The Band Boosters shared profits from the sale of T-shirts with the walk’s sponsor, the Morenci Area Chamber of Commerce. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.eclipse
    LOOKING UP—More than 200 people showed up at Stair District Library Monday afternoon to view the big celestial event with free glasses provided by a grant from the Space Science Institute. The library offered craft activities from noon to 1 p.m., refreshments including Cosmic Cake from Zingerman’s Bakehouse and a live viewing of the eclipse from NASA on a large screen. As the sky darkened slightly, more and more people moved outside to the sidewalk to take a look at the shrinking sun. If you missed it, hang on for the next total eclipse in 2024 as the path comes even closer to this area.
  • Cecil
    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
  • Front.rest
    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.