Black Friday, 2014
Friday, November 28 2014
It was cold today, and the persistent snow stuck to the trees outside made it look even wintery out there than it does in a normal snowy winter. It seemed like a good day for coffee, but we'd had it yesterday, so I made a pot of decaf instead. At some point while we were drinking it, Gretchen had the impulsive idea that we should go to the mall and try to get some "Black Friday savings." Things we need include a bigger, more powerful microwave oven and a sofa with a hide-away bed.
So, after I'd spent some time in the laboratory soldering rows of pins on two Arduino shields (one for weather measurements and the other to drive servomotors), we loaded up into the Prius with the dogs and drove out to the mall.
In the Sears, I bought a much-needed soldering iron, and then we checked out the various options for microwave ovens. Eventually we began to settle on a $150 Kenmore Elite with an especially large capacity and a power rating of 1.2 kilowatts. The thing that convinced Gretchen that this was the model for us was when I mentioned that it looked big enough to heat an unfolded sheet of injera. I'll have to do some rejiggering of the kitchen cabinetry to make it work, but it will be worth it. Unfortunately, there were none of this particular model in stock, so we'll have to wait four or five days to pick it up.
Not unexpectedly, the mall was crowded on this, the biggest shopping day of the year. Most of the people there looked to be 20-somethings, and it was a little odd to feel like a member of the long tail of older people in such a big crowd. We waded through the sea of fresh-faced (though often somewhat overfed) Millennials to J. C. Penney in hopes that they stocked furniture, but the Hudson Valley Mall is just too small for even big department stores to have the necessary floorspace for such things.
This evening for the first time ever while watching the increasingly-absurd "reality show" Gold Rush, I did not drink any form of alcohol. Instead I drank chamomile tea. Over the years, I've developed a strong habit of never watching my television programs (as opposed to Jeopardy and the Colbert Report, which are programs I share with Gretchen) unless I have some sort of alcohol to drink, and it's a habit I'd like to break. I want to get to the point where I don't even think about alcohol and can take it or leave it. It took two weeks to become that way about dairy cheese, so hopefully its an attainable goal.
Eleanor with Celeste in the living room at around noon today. Click to enlarge.
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