absorbed by the vastness
Friday, September 21 2012
In the greenhouse upstairs project, I'm getting down to the details that need to be completed before I can insulate and seal up the walls. Today I did a bunch of electrical work, a job that had been giving me logistical headaches for weeks if not months. Until yesterday I didn't know if I would supply the upstairs with electricity from its east end or its west end. There is power outside the building on both ends, and initially it had seemed that it might be easiest to enter from the east, since the power there was closest to one of the built-in chases I could use for running power westward. But there's now a large wasp nest near the east power box that I didn't want to disturb. Also, grabbing power from the east side of the greenhouse would also make for a longer route for upstairs electricity. Grabbing power from the west would mean grabbing it from where it emerges from the ground en route from the garage, but I hadn't wanted to do that because it would mean running it southward through the west wall for some distance, without the benefit of any built-in electrical chases. In the end I went with connecting to the west electrical box, which made the most sense partly because power was going to have to be near that box anyway to get to the upstair's light switch.
Unfortunately, the only electrical wire I had handy of ten gauge three-conductor-plus-ground orange-jacketed Romex, and that stuff is stiff and unpleasant to work with, particularly when connections must be jammed into tight little connection and outlet boxes. I had a few scraps of 12 gauge Romex, and I used one of those to get from the already-crowded box on the outside of the west wall into that wall and then to the first outlet box, but from there I had to use the 10 gauge stuff. I managed to get enough of the electrical wiring done that I had an outlet and a light switch operating a single overhead light.
It had been a sweaty, nasty job, and the plan was to go out tonight. So I took a nice hot shower. Gretchen had made the fixings for burritos, which Nancy joined us for (she brought a sixer of Blue Moon beer). Then the three of us drove to Uptown Kingston to attend another instance of B.R.A.W.L, the regional women's arm wrestling extravaganza. Tonight's BRAWL was held at BSP (Backstage Productions), the large indoor space that surely occupies the geographic center (and much of the non-street real estate) of Uptown. We'd been to BSP many times but had only occasionally been into its vast area in the back. The space has an aura of black-painted dilapidation about it, which was matched tonight by the crowd itself. It skewed a bit younger and less-rich-in-people-we-know than the crowds attending past BRAWL events, and the attendees seemed somehow even more heavily-tattooed and darkly festive. Because of these things, the BSP scene tonight had a post-apocalyptic vibe, one where it wouldn't have seemed the least bit odd had a monster robot stomped out from behind a curtain and begun spraying fire and devouring people. BRAWL events are always crowded, but there is so much space at BSP that tonight's crowd actually seemed a little sparse. Indeed, the vastness of the space seemed to absorb much of the energy of an event that is usually sweaty and claustrophobic. There were some funny and clever things that happened (particularly a contestant in the character of a hillbilly granny), but this BRAWL somehow lacked a certain something. Perhaps Gretchen and I have outgrown it or BRAWL itself has faded into its own complacent midlife. It was, however, Nancy's first BRAWL so perhaps she got something out of it. We only stayed around for the first round of competition, long enough for me to drink two Southern Tier IPAs.
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