Thursday, January 10, 2008

I'm a Visitor Here Myself

Brian Bamberger is in my presence ladies and gentlemen. This week, Brian has gotten the distinct privilege of visiting the Jackson house and working on the Jackson/Owsley/Clay crew.

Due to CAP's apparent inability, for whatever reason, to hire us a crew leader, Kevin has come up from McCreary County to save us in our dire situation. Kevin has previously been leading Don and UBS man (David H.). We have always called his crew "Kevin Black's Black Blackness". But now, the Black Blackness has enveloped us. Our project this week has been to design a porch and ramp for two disabled persons. Kevin said something very profound today. He said, and I paraphrase, "Wheelchair ramps always have a special place in my heart, because, well, oftentimes you are freeing the individual from being held captive in their own home." Kevin then recounted a story in which he and his volunteers, many years ago, built an elderly man a wheelchair ramp. The man had not been outside of his house for some time because he had no stairs but just flimsy concrete blocks. After the ramp was done, the man rolled his chair up and down the ramp for hours they said. When the crew left, the man said he was going to spend all night on the new porch, and most likely, he did.

Anyways, for every foot you go out on a ramp, you can only go down one inch ( a 1/12 pitch). So, the door is 60 inches off the ground which means that the ramp must be 60 feet long....that means that we need to dig about 439472 post holes to support the decking of the ramp. On the first day on the job, Jesse and I were digging post holes and suddenly, the hole started to fill with water. " on the Pickles!!!" Jesse exclaimed. We had thought we hit the water line, so we frantically were digging around the water hole. As a feeling of panic set in, Kevin rushed to turn off the city water at the main line. As it turned out though, it was just a false alarm, and it was only rain water filling the hole. So, we filled the hole with concrete and let the Church roll on.

On the home front, we have had quite a mouse problem. Because we live in a national forest, we get all sorts of creepy crawlers in our house at every time of the year. In the warm months we get huge spiders and "waspers" and in the cold months we get mice. Recently Jesse and I have been hunting the mice with butter knives and work boots. The mice scurry across the floor and Jesse and I scream, quite girlishly and hurl our boots and butter knives at our little friends. So far, we have hit 0. But the traps have gotten 7. Anyways, after Brian's first night, he came out of his room looking quite terrified. Apparently, mice had crawled on him in his sleep and he claims (which I do not believe) that they went in his mouth. This caused Jesse and I to step up our front in the war on the mice. The battles rage on with mixed result. I fear we shall soon be over run.


Quote of the day, From Pope John Paul II's farewell address to America on Saturday, September 19, 1987

"America, your deepest identity and truest character as a nation is revealed in the position you take towards the human person. The ultimate test of your greatness in the way you treat every human being, but especially the weakest and most defenceless ones.

The best traditions of your land presume respect for those who cannot defend themselves. If you want equal justice for all, and true freedom and lasting peace, then, America, defend life! All the great causes that are yours today will have meaning only to the extent that you guarantee the right to life and protect the human person:

- feeding the poor and welcoming refugees;
- reinforcing the social fabric of this nation;
- promoting the true advancement of women;
- securing the rights of minorities;
- pursuing disarmament, while guaranteeing legitimate defence; all this will succeed only if respect for life and its protection by the law is granted to every human being from conception until natural death.

Every human person - no matter how vulnerable or helpless, no matter how young or how old, no matter how healthy, handicapped or sick, no matter how useful or productive for society - is a being of inestimable worth created in the image and likeness of God. This is the dignity of America, the reason she exists, the condition for her survival-yes, the ultimate test of her greatness: to respect every human person, especially the weakest and most defenceless ones, those as yet unborn."


John said...

First, that's a long ramp. I feel my nerdiness trying to break through but I shall hold my tongue.

Second, when I think of you being overrun by the mice, I think of the Fellowship being overrun by the orcs in Khazad-dum. Hopefully, you don't awake the Balrog and lose Gandalf.

Third, I got my haircut today.

Fourth, goodbye.

Anonymous said...

It's not difficult to see why he is my personal favorite of all the modern Popes.

You might want to get a cat for the house....and don't have it declawed. Throw a few moth balls into dark corners, etc. Also, put up a sign saying "No mice allowed" or something similar.

That's even more holes than Dunkin Donuts has.

samwise gamgee said...

dad, keep your bad jokes off the internet :)

John said... the words of the great philosopher Chat..."Have you ever considered that you might be a little bit retarded?"