Thursday, May 12, 2011

At full blast they crank out fully two Mouse Power

One of our many problems is that we can never throw anything away. It’s a serious issue because we just accumulate masses of crap. Any time we buy replacement things they turn out to be additional things. Towels for example. We buy new towels but we have never thrown a towel away in our lives – ever.
See you think I am joking but I am not. There are big boxes in the basement marked ‘old towels’ and ‘older towels’. I get the old towels out and say will I throw these away and Cate says – no we had better keep them for..…um…. And I say yes you are right you never know we just might…..
Well – if a 737 comes down in the courtyard we sure as hell are going to need a lot of towels to.…..well..…I am sure that one day we will need the towels for something.
When we left Sydney we had a real chance to rid ourselves of some of the steaming piles of crap that we had stored in cupboards and the roof spaces. I mean this was not an attic – this was crawl space. We have a tiny house there – right next to the city – I mean 10 minutes drive from the Opera House - and there is not much storage space.
I had to go in there to those tiny spaces on my hands and knees like a child laborer in the coal mines in the 18th century - dragging a wooden trolley behind me to store this shit.
And I had to wear a bicycle helmet because otherwise I would knock myself unconscious on the cross beams – and generally speaking it was like a sauna in there in summer and like a refrigerator in there in winter so it was not an easy task to store stuff that normal people would be happy to burn in the back yard incinerator. And the bugs up there were as big as kittens so I needed to use the cattle-prod App on my iPhone to keep them at bay.
So rather than doing what normal people would do and throwing it all away before we came to Vienna we decided that we just did not have time – correction – Cate just did not have time - and I do not have the delegated authority - to throw anything away on my own - so we brought it with us.
Except for the piles of shit that we stored in Sydney. Now if some dispassionate observer - say the Salvation Army – looked at what we stored in Sydney – they would probably send us emergency food parcels in Vienna. The Salvation Army would have thought it was the discards from the collections of ‘National Sad Bastards Week’. I mean it was really pathetic and is the type of stuff that would not be acceptable to the average refugee. In fact the average refugee would have complained to the UNHCR - saying we are refugees but we do have minimum acceptable standards.
But some of the stuff we brought with us was worse.
We brought – for example – 42 boxes of books. But we did not bring our bookshelves because – although our apartment here is much bigger than our house in Sydney – we did not see where we could put the bookshelves. Most of the wall space here is taken up by stupendously large air conditioning units which do not work.
There are about 12 of these – each the size of a Cadillac Eldorado. They are almost completely useless – except as ornament stands. The units are big enough – theoretically – to cool - say – Madison Square Garden. However – at full bore they each pump out about the same amount of air as a flatulent mouse does after an evening munching on baked beans.  
They are slightly better in winter and increase in mouse power (MP) to about two each.  Endless trips from the very friendly and highly enthusiastic air conditioner repair man has gotten them to their current finely tuned state.
Last time he came – in the middle of winter – he said that they would work better if we turned them off. You see – you think I am kidding you again because you know about my sense of humor - but this time I am not joking. That is what he said. After 2.5 years of visiting us and trying to get them to work he said – in winter the fans should be turned off and the heaters would work better. No - stop laughing - that is what he said. Rozalin was as astonished as we were and emailed the company for confirmation.   
Well I must say that surprised the shit out of me. To get something to work you turn it off. Well I am up for anything so we tried it. Guess what. It went from freezing to completely stone cold mother fucking freezing. We turned them back on and cranked them up to fully 2MP and then wore thermal underwear and winter clothes inside the house.
To be continued…..


  1. I have to remember to cover my keyboard with a silicon muffin pan, to act as cuspidor the next time I attempt to drink tea while reading your blog!

  2. Flatulent mouse after baked beans? Pahaaaa!!!!! Hope you don't mind if I throw that little jewel out sometime around the house. Living with a husband and 3 boys requires a serious sense of bathroom humor. I might just be the winner of the next "fart story war" with that one! :))

  3. he he he. i'm surprised the technician didn't scold you for potentially causing a DRAFT (even at 2MP).

  4. Global warming could be thing for you. Let's hope it spreads quickly enough. Then, good-bye, mouse-powered windmills!

  5. I recall my 2 visits to Austria, Graz. My visits were in January.

    Freezing your behind off was something akin to a national pride medal, the maids opened the windows when cleaning the room. This was that year when Europe was colder than the coldest and old people all over the continent were dropping like flies from freezing to death.

    The other interesting item was that my job involved making things disappear. How the Hmm, do you make sh,,, disappear if you have to recycle eveything. I am serious. This was just crazy. These people collected empty paper coffee cups, in a stacking module. I had people working with me scouting for illegal drops for trash and coming back with homeless cats. In the end it all went to a farm which we denied ever setting foot on for our customs declarations.

    But the beer and wine was excellent.