Framing the Dialogue

Posts Tagged ‘light’

Light At The End Of The Tunnel

Usually when someone describes “light at the end of a tunnel” that is a good thing though not in this case.   I am in this tunnel (actually we all are) and this light is speeding toward us.  We are not really in a position to escape and the walls are too narrow for us to hope that is passes harmlessly by us.  What I am talking about is a notice that I received from my employer recently.  These notices are typical this time of year to outline issues/changes to the W-2 reporting.  They are generally unremarkable.  This year’s notice included this paragraph which is the “light” to which I was referring;

Diminishing Returns

Having a car that is nearly eight years old with almost 150,000 miles makes the annual inspection a likely costly adventure. My appointment was Monday so I dropped the car off Sunday night and anxiously awaited the news. I got the call in the early afternoon and Ed, our mechanic, started going through the list; A/C check, battery, tire rotation…little stuff really. Ed hesitated and I said “okay now for the bad news.” The bad news was repairs to the tune of $1,400 (a big part was brakes all around) and that my car would not be ready until the next evening. The real bad news is that Ed did some checking and told me that my vehicle is showing its age and miles. Some of the hidden stuff will probably need to be replaced next year and maybe I may not want to spend that kind of money. Essentially telling me that I’d be paying a lot more money for an old vehicle…or getting diminishing returns on my investment.

Watt TF

My "collection" of ill-fitting CFL bulbs

We have a battle in our household (it’s not that I’ve long since learned to put the seat down).  Okay it is not really a battle, but I can tolerate compact fluorescent light (“CFL”) bulbs and my wife hates them.  When I tried to sneak them into a socket she would promptly replace them deriding their weak, yellow light.  In the olden days she was pretty much right on with that description, but the newer, higher wattage bulbs are much brighter and clean (whiter light).  These improvements came too late for her though because her preference is set.  I like the fact that the bulbs do seem to last longer, but sometimes trying to get one to fit into a lamp can be a trial-and-error process and that has been expensive especially as I buy the higher output bulbs.  I now have a drawer full of rejects that won’t fit in fixtures gathering dust.  In our room, my lamp has CFL hers has Edison’s classic and that works for us.  But not for long…

News Briefs – Volume XXII

News briefs are a collection of interesting news stories…

Brief 1: What are the REAL chances of meaningful tort reform in the United States when one of the men responsible for that task files a lawsuit. Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) is suing the company that runs the cafeteria at the Longworth House Office Building. The suit claims that his veggie sandwich “contained dangerous substances, namely an olive pit, that a consumer would not reasonably expect to find in the final product served.” So when you get something with olives it is not reasonable to possibly find a pit once in a while? Since when is an olive pit a “dangerous substance?” Kucinich is only asking for $150,000 to cover his “permanent dental and oral injuries requiring multiple surgical and dental procedures,” and he also wants compensation for his pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment. I can imagine the heartfelt testimony as Kucinich describes his crippling fear of olives and not even being able to stand the sight of Popeye’s girlfriend.  Perhaps it would have been more fitting if the dangerous substance had been a nut.