Sunday, June 20, 2010
The ceiling was angry that day, my friend
MARK’S ARTICLE – June 20, 2010
“This is scary”
Something scary happened yesterday. I thought the less skittish of you would want to know about it. Some people really groove on scary stuff.
I had just come out of the guestroom to—What? Uh, I was reading back there. Good place to read. – Anyway, I left the guestroom to make some coffee and—Beg pardon? Yes, using my new French Press. Uh, Yuban. Would you please let me get on with this? Thanks!
Okay, I’m making coffee when all of a sudden it sounded like a rabid goat had gotten in the attic and was trying to bust through the ceiling of the guestroom, the room I had just vacated. Remember?
My first thought was – I suppose I should go back in there and check that out. Scary is what it was. What weapon do you take into a room where there’s a giant hydrophobic goat? I grabbed the garlic squeezer and eased down the hallway. (If you can get something to stay still long enough, you can do some serious damage with a well-placed garlic press.)
On “three” I awkwardly bounded into the room to find the ceiling fan wobbling around like a bad dog. I had a vision of the original “Airport” movie, where the giant propeller falls off and—What? Okay, maybe it wasn’t “Airport”. One of those older movies. Just quit it, okay?
Instantly I react. After about five seconds I quit trying to grab the little hanging down chain and decided to flip the switch on the wall. Genius. Only downside was, in the panic, I had lost my garlic squeezer. No idea. It’ll show up.
Upon containing the immediate crisis, I decided it best if I finished my reading and my coffee in the study. The guestroom just wasn’t safe. Something had messed up the fan. While I had ruled out mad goat, I was seriously thinking poltergeist. After all, I had just been in that room. Suppose I had fallen asleep during the wobble and the fan had flown across the room and struck me on the head… I could’ve been killed! Or had an in-house rhinoplasty. No, unlike the stupid people in the Poltergeist movies, I wasn’t going back in that room until I had answers.
The answer would have to come later, ‘cause after finishing my coffee I realized I had an appointment in town. I had posted it on one of my calendars. A wall calendar is a great place to write down important stuff. The thing is, you pretty much have to occasionally look at the calendar for it to do any good.
Having to deal with a possessed ceiling fan is the perfect time to check your calendar to see if you need to be somewhere. I did… and I did. I was supposed to meet with stupid ol’ Brad Meyer. Whatta goober. And, he’s mean.
So, I head out the door, but FIRST I call Kay at work. I told her that if she beat me home, she was not to flip the switch in the guestroom. “Why not?” is what she said. I told her, “Look, just don’t do it. You can go into the room, just don’t flip the switch… or turn on the TV. Especially don’t turn on the TV!”
After leaving Kay hanging, I kept my appointment with crazy ol’ Brad. Just mean as he can be. We taped two of our audio restaurant reviews. Pretty good stuff. I don’t know how we do it. We never even land a punch.
Where was I before I offered up that shameless plug? Oh, yeah, fortunately I beat Kay home. I instantly shut the door to the guestroom and prepared supper. I grilled some Cornish hens. What I did was put some pepper and—Beg pardon? Well, of course there’s a shorter version. Okay, okay. All you hafta do is ask.
All right, long story getting’ shorter ‘cause of Mr. Gripey-pants. Turns out there was no ghostly connection to the severe blade wobble. Who woulda guessed it? Well, I did, actually. Right after Kay assured me our home was not built over a grave-site. Don’t know how she knew that, but she was convincing.
I waited till this morning to take a look at the fan. First I had to dust the blades. I put on my lawn-mowing mask for the job. Nothing collects more dust faster than a fan blade. Uh, maybe a piano. Yeah, I hear that pianos really—Okay!
While cleaning the blades I noticed that two of ‘em were rather loose. Could a loose blade ‘cause a wobble? Could starched shorts cause a rash? They have and they will.
You may not be aware but you can’t tighten a fan blade very well without removing the salad bowl sized light shade. Those buddies collect dust, too. Not as much a piano, but… So, I take off the light shade and clean it. Then I tighten the blades.
At this point a less confident person would’ve tried out the fan before reattaching the light bowl thing. Not me. I had conquered my fears… my uncertainties. Once you rule out frenzied goat and ghouls you’re pretty cool with everything else.
After reattaching the glass bowl to the fan, I flipped the switch and viola! All’s well at the Hayter house. I just called Kay to tell her the good news. Sarcastic as all get out. I’m her hero. Craig T. Nelson couldn’t have handled it better. So lucky to have me. Did I find the garlic press?
There is always something to mar a happy ending. Been my experience. Something apparently took off with the garlic squeezer thing. I don’t know who… or what. I don’t wanna know. I just want you to know that I fixed the fan.
Yes, I could’ve told you that right off, but I love a scary story. -- The ceiling was angry, my friend…
To listen to Brad Meyer and Mark’s latest restaurant reviews go to http://www.hcnonline.com/media/italiano.mp3.