XM Radio Plot

I love my XM radio but it’s been doing something strange lately. I have two stations that I listen to 90% of the time. Fox News and the Loft. You can guess what Fox News is but the Loft may be new to you. It’s eclectic music you just never hear anywhere else. Every once in a while a real gem pops up. Anyway, I noticed a month or so back, the radio would just change stations. And not just change them but switched me from Fox News to CNN. And it was consistent, every hour or so it would make the change. I never listen intently but I’d find the reporters discussing topics that I knew would be grounds for firing on Fox – enough so that I’d go over to the radio and see what channel it was on. Since XM was recently merged with Sirius, I suspected a commie plot. But then I was listening to the Loft and heard a song that really caught my attention. I got up to read the screen to learn what exactly I was listening to and noticed that I was no longer on the Loft. It had switched to a station called the Coffee House. It was subtly different than the Loft but in the same vein. More solo singing guitar playing on Coffee House compared to groups on XM. I also noticed that it was XM 51 whereas the Loft is XM 50. I checked and sure enough Fox News and CNN are adjacent channels. So my radio changes one channel from time to time and always in the same direction. Not sure if something is marginal in the radio itself or if I have a weak signal problem and the radio is locking onto the stronger adjacent signal during a fade. I’m ok with the Loft/Coffee House switching but the Right to Left switches raise my blood pressure.

Worked on an interesting project the other day. We had a very windy day this week which blew over one of George’s potted plants. The story is in the potted plant. Turns out that 20 years ago, George planted a small bamboo plant in a large container – a plastic cylindrical container about 3′ in diameter and 3′ tall. The bamboo thrived and if you saw it now, the pot is absolutely full of 12′ tall bamboo. George had always assumed that the roots had grown out of the bottom of the container and on into the ground. Bad assumption – it was totally contained within the planter. Try to visualize a 3′ x 3′ tight, tight, tight root ball supporting a stand of bamboo 12′ tall. That’s where I came in – he wanted to replant the bamboo to a more favorable location but no way was that a one man job. So we dug a hole to accommodate the plant and between the two of us manhandled it into position. The spot he choose turned into wet muck about a foot down so we had to bring in soil from another location to fill in enough to cover the root ball and provide some support. The other thing we didn’t appreciate is how big a wind sail this presented so when we stood it up, the 20 mph wind we were experiencing blew it right over. So we put a loop around it and tied it off to 3 other trees. Sounds easier than it was. I have to guess it will do fine in the new location if it did so well confined to a prison pot for 20 years. I think the amazing thing is that somehow the bamboo thrived with the only nourishment coming from rain water. Who’d a thunk it.

I don’t know about you but I’m sure ready for a little Global warming. I’m not talking about the tenth of a degree kind of warming that excites all the scientists. I need about 20 degrees to get my bones back up to total warmth. I understand the Polar Bears like this weather but I’m not totally convinced that’s even true. I think if they had a good way out of the arctic, they’d be gone in a heartbeat. But I have gleaned a bit of silver lining out of the cold weather. When I was going through all that bankruptcy mess with Beehive, I had daily contact with some of the nastiest folks on the planet and it caused serious insomnia. I read somewhere that if you could fill your mind with pleasant thoughts it would help you fall asleep. It worked so I still try to fill my head with nice stuff before I crash. Right now I’m conjuring up an image of big Al Gore up in Tennessee with no electricity because the ice has frozen the rotors on his windmill. I go right to sleep.

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