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Fifteen Ampere Epic

Posted 2012.02.19 20.21 in Pointless Blather by Stephanie


For I have been to the cellar, and I have emerged victorious.

With mine own eyes, I have seen the cobwebs of creepiness. With mine own legs, I descended the rickety stairs of wobble. With mine own back, I did duck beneath the ductwork of furnace.

All these horrors and hazzards, I did brave. For a darkness had befallen the land of kitchen. No more did the micro wave. Neither did the oven bake. Bread lay untoasted, and coffee loitered unbrewed. Truly, there was dissent in the land.

What fiend had brought such misery? What evil had befallen the gentle land of kitchen? These questions could only be answered, these wrongs could only be righted, by journey into the cellar.

There did I find a feeble fuse, upon which was inscribed the runes of fifteen amperes. Yet this fuse was weak and frail. No fifteen ampere fuse was he! His heart had failed, burned and splattered, for he was not the fuse he claimed to be.

His lifeless hollow shell cast aside, his song will be sung no more. In his place stands now a new fuse, strong of heart and resolved of purpose. A fuse who would truly meet the challenge of the fifteen amperes. A fuse who’s strength and bravery would ring down the ages! A fuse who’s song would be sung for many years hence! Yea, a fuse among fuses.

And once again, there is light in the land of kitchen. Microwaves doth beep, countertop convection ovens doth whirr. Bread is once more toasted and the coffee shall flow freely in the land. Verily, there is much rejoicing.

Thus endeth the epic of the fifteen amperes.

Avoiding the Dank

Posted 2011.05.14 11.31 in Pointless Blather, Uncategorized by Stephanie

It’s wrong, I know. So very wrong.

See, I’m getting these letters from the natural gas company, that basically amount to:

Y u no want me service your furnace? It’s freeeee….

And really, I don’t have anything against regular maintenance. Especially when it’s free (or already paid for via some other contract.) The furnace is an especially Valued and Important part of my thermostat project. So its continued and effecient function is something that should be of paramount importance.

Why then am I procrastinating about getting it serviced?┬áBecause that would mean accompanying the service tech down….into the cellar….

And what is wrong with the cellar, you ask? Well allow me to compile a brief list, quickly, off the top of my head:

  1. Cobwebs.
  2. Spiders.
  3. Creaky wobbly unsafe stairs.
  4. The Dank.
  5. Spiders.
  6. Bugs.
  7. Cobwebs.

And yes, that’s just a quick list. There are plenty more reasons to avoid the cellar. I won’t even go into the mysterious bumps in the night, the strangely appearing and disappearing mists, sudden chills, the lights that turned on and off by themselves, or the voices.

Or the fact that the last time I was down there with a service tech, all his flashlights burned out, one after another, till we were left almost completely in the dark.

If I could just point the guy to the cellar door and say Go through there, down the stairs, through the second doorway and the furnace is down there. It’s in the room with the furnace in it. then I would surely do that.

But the service techs are not fools. They know better than to venture alone into areas where the homeowner fears to tred.

And so I am stuck in a quandry. I want the furnace to be serviced. I do not want to go down there. I have to go down there to get the furnace serviced.

What I need is to find the Indiana Jones of the HVAC service world. He’d go down there alone, give the furnace a tune-up, and give The Dank a swift kick in the arse.

Things That Go Bump in the Basement

Posted 2006.10.17 0.00 in Spiritual by Stephanie

So my furnace has been acting up, and I wanted to get a technician here to have a look at it. He gets here an hour or so after dark. (Whole nuther story there but will let it go.) Down we go into the cellar, and he starts working away. All he had for light was a little penlight, like a little 2 AA battery pocket penlight. I offered a couple times to go and get another flashlight but he said it was cool, he could service a furnace in his sleep.

So away he goes, working at it, holding the penlight in his mouth while tinkering with the furnace. And, you could have predicted it, right? The penlight dies.

So he hits it, fiddles with the switch, and finaly it comes back on, but really dim. He keeps working. And yep, the penlight dies again.

So he shakes it and hits it and fiddles with the switch, and finaly it comes back on again but now it’s about as bright as a firefly. Anyhow, he got the furnace fixed up and working great really fast. He was a very dexterious and handy fellow.

Anyways (heh thought I was going to start another paragraph with ‘so’ didn’t ya?) anyways he’s gone, and since he left, there’s been like three or four loud bangs and bumps from down there. At first I thought it was one of the cats, maybe snuck down there and got stuck when I closed the door. But no, they’re both cowering up here.

It’s been 15 or 20 minutes since the last big bump, so I’m thinking maybe they’re done whatever it is they do down there.

It’s where I keep the Dank.

Posted 2006.07.23 0.00 in Photography by Stephanie

The basement, that is. It’s where the Dank lives.

I’ve been scanning all my old photographs into my computer, since a) I never look at them at the moment, and b) iPhoto makes it very easy to look at them any time. Many, many years of blurry photos, and blurry memories.

But I have a bunch of negatives somewhere, I have a binder with all my really good negs and I can’t find it. My scanner can scan negatives and, although slow, it does a very good job. So I wanted my negatives binder. Well, I haven’t seen it in about 4 years, which means…yeah it’s probably in the basement.

Last time I was down in the basement was almost exactly 2 months ago. About the 22nd or 21st of May. There were unexplained door closings and shoulder tappings and temperature dropping and stuff back then, giving me a serious case of the heebie-jeebies. Well no matter, I want my negatives! I turn on the light, grab a flashlight, open the cellar door and down I go. Exactly 1 step.

Rip, tear, tangle, I am covered in spiderweb. So I get a stick and try again, waving the stick around infront of me. It doesn’t do a damn thing. Every step I’m tearing through more spiderwebs, down the stairs and into the first part of the cellar, like a damn Indiana Jones adventure. Then I notice, of course, last time doors were closing when I didn’t want them too, this time, doors were open when they weren’t supposed to. The door to the old cellar and the door to the wine cellar were both wide open but I distinctly remember last time, after I got the last load of wine and was too creeped out, I closed everything and turned off all the lights then beat a hasty retreat from the basement.

Strangely enough, there were no spiderwebs in the older (1860’s era) part of the cellar. Well, what I mean is, they were not big floor-to-ceiling room-crossing room-filling doorway-blocking spiderwebs. The ones in the old cellar were the normal ones that stick to the corners and rafters and stuff. It’s just the new (1940’s era) cellar where the spiders made a complete floor-to-ceiling room-filling maze of icky creepy stupid spiderwebs. Blah! I can still feel them all over me.

Oh, and my binder full of negatives? Never saw it. Don’t know where it is. I did find a box with a bunch more pictures in it, among other things. I blindly groped around the box shoving handfulls of photo envelopes into a plastic bag, so will have to find out later what I managed to find. Aside from all the spiders.

I just know tomorrow I’ll find a bunch of new spiders all over the house. I hate that because you know there’s only one way for them to all get there at once. Shudder.

Algonquin, Algonquin, Algonquin, Rainbow
Algonquin in Winter, Algonquin in Rain, Tim Lake, double Rainbow