Sunday, August 12, 2007

How to put up an Easy-Up canopy

Part One

  1. Go to garage
  2. Search for large wheeled bag that you had left conveniently by the door last fall.
  3. Find large wheeled bag on shelf in back.
  4. Remember that the Helpful Relatives who put it there did so during a Very Necessary reorganization of Heavy Things that you weren't ever going to do.
  5. Try to ignore that most of those heavy things belong to said Helpful Relatives.
  6. Drag large wheeled bag out to the yard.
  7. Marvel at how the conveniently wheeled bag insists on twisting over to its non-wheeled side.
  8. Open bag.
  9. Dump everything on your feet.
  10. Rest for an hour.
  11. Go back to the yard.
  12. Stand metal framework up on its legs.
  13. Try to remember how to expand it. Oh, yeah. Pull on the sides that say "open."
  14. Remember that this part takes two people.
  15. Go inside until you can recruit a helper.
  16. Contact Friendly Neighbor who owes you several favors.
  17. Meet Friendly Neighbor in yard.
  18. Pull from different directions.
  19. Watch Friendly Neighbor casually slip locking devices into place without any struggle at all.
  20. Control envy.
  21. Say thanks.
  22. Go inside to get ready for bed.

Part Two

  1. Go to garage.
  2. Search for huge blue canopy that you weren't able to stuff into the wheeled bag last fall.
  3. Find it on top shelf.
  4. Remember to think nice thoughts about Helpful Relatives.
  5. Bring large blue canopy to yard.
  6. Unfold the canopy.
  7. Drag the canopy over the framework.
  8. Align velcro strips.
  9. Feel satisfied that this part is going well.
  10. Close velcro anchors.
  11. Curse as one velcro anchor rips out of the fabric.
  12. Fetch Spray Adhesive Guaranteed to Bond Anything Permanently.
  13. Spray the Adhesive.
  14. Hold for a few moments as you feel your fingers bonding together.
  15. Watch the velcro anchor fall off immediately.
  16. Rush into the house as you realize that what is being bonded together permanently are your plastic finger splints.
  17. Grab the Acrylic Nails Remover that you mistakenly bought a few years back.
  18. Liberally douse hand with Acrylic Nails Remover.
  19. Take a moment to feel gratitude toward people with acrylic nails as your fingers now separate from each other.
  20. Grab the duck tape.
  21. Return outdoors.
  22. Apply duck tape liberally mostly so you won't lose the velcro anchor.
  23. Promise yourself that you will think of a permanent solution later.
  24. Realize you need Friendly Neighbor again to extend the legs of the gazebo.
  25. Return indoors to recover.
  26. Catch frightful sight of yourself in mirror. Note to self: Remove mirrors.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Another happy update

After BEAT's campaign to get AirAsia to truly live up to its motto, "Now Everyone Can Fly," the airline has announced sweeping new plans for inclusion. I especially like the frank manner in which AirAsia has admitted that it was wrong: A banner hung at the venue of the public announcement has the international symbol for disability access and a reworked slogan, "Now Everyone Can Fly, including the Disabled Guests." Congratulations, BEAT, and way to go, AirAsia.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Happy Update on Pedro Guzman

You may remember Pedro Guzman, the Californian picked up on charges of criminal trespass and deported under the assumption that he is an illegal alien. Turned out that he is, in fact, a native-born citizen, and a man with a learning difficulty which, according to his family, makes it hard for him to provide correct answers to questions. Anyway, Guzman had simply been dumped across the border, unable to speak Spanish in any fluent way and completely unfamiliar with the culture and area. His one cryptic call to his family was that he didn't know where he was. The US government to this day denies that it did anything wrong in deporting a US citizen with mental difficulties.

OK, the update? His family found him and they're bringing him home. Guzman family, congratulations on your success in finding your lost son. May all families looking for their lost loved ones be as fortunate.