Wednesday, April 20, 2011

You can't do that.

I heard on the radio news this morning that the US government is considering getting rid of its much-derided colour-coding for "terrorist threat levels" (the one which never, ever went below orange, and only ever spiked up to red when there was an election the Republican party wasn't sure they could win coming up; and I must insert my joke about the getting rid of it being because the TSA saw the threat level was "Grape" and thought it said "Grope") and replacing it with a system which uses words. Specifically, one which has only two levels: "Imminent" and "Elevated".

You can't do that. If the danger level is elevated, it must be elevated from a lower level. That's what elevated means. To make "elevated" the lowest possible rung is far, far more blatant fearmongering than the never-less-than-orange rainbow ever was, and I am sick of it. Moreover, I am sick and tired of the average American reaction to terrorism, which is essentially to cower in the corner and whimper. I've said many times that the way to react to terrorism is ridicule and mockery. Laugh at them. Scorn them. Don't let them change your behaviour at all. Stop being scared. Fear and behaviour modification is their objective.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Trouble sitting.

Lest you think I'm some kind of automotive genius based on my last post, allow me to remind you that I'm a fool from time to time. This one, well... shortly after buying my car, it became clear to me that the velour seats in a fetching dark grey were going to get distinctly hot over the California summer. So, off I went, and acquired a seat cover, of the large-wood-beads persuasion, and fitted it. That was distinctly tricky, due to exceedingly limited space beneath the seat. The easiest part was getting the elastic straps through the gap between the back and the squab, and that was no picnic. Still, I succeeded, hooked the little plastic hooks on, and went on my merry way. Come winter, I removed it, to allow me to make better use of the heated seats. In the process, one of the plastic hooks departed, and by the time summer rolled around again, I was forced to make do, with both of the elastic straps, with velcro cable wraps. These were a sight tougher to manage than the hooks, and I barked several knuckles, but I again succeeded, and until that autumn, there it sat.

Today, it came time to reinstall the thing once more, and so I pulled it from the boot. The velcro made it tricky to feed the straps through, and my eye lit upon the height/tilt adjustment lever for the seat. "Aha!", thought I, "maybe if I adjust this, the gap will widen!"

It did not. However, I should have expected that, as the seat was already at the bottom of its travel, and upon the lever being moved without my bulk in the seat, it leapt to the top with a mighty SPROING! and moved no further. The seatback and the squab are a single unit, as one might expect of a seat designed by a lazy orthopaedic surgeon; so the feeding through remained annoyingly hard. With the seat a good three inches higher, though, connecting the straps beneath it was a breeze.

And it only took me two and a bit years to figure that one out.