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Thursday, March 2, 2006

This could have been a bad day. If not for the fact that suddenly (and finally) itís March 2 and thereís baseball on the radio, this could have been a very bad day. In fact, this was a pretty bad day, even with baseball on the radio, but letís say it could have been a worse day without it.

When I took my car in for its ďmajorĒ service in January, they couldnít find the reason it had been occasionally refusing to start. They claimed to have made an adjustment, but they didnít promise it wouldnít happen again. They sort of hinted they thought it might not happen again, but I had doubts as to their sincerity. Still, it didnít happen again until today. So they were right, for almost two months. I have to give them that.

The thing is, it only doesnít start once a day, usually. When I was trying to leave for my errands this morning, the engine would not turn over. It gave me that familiar hum that told me it was a starter problem, the very same starter problem the dealer couldnít find in January. I knew what to do. (No, not cry. But that did occur to me.) I left the car alone for an hour (ďYou sit and think about what youíve done.Ē) Then I tried it again.

This time it didnít start right away when I tried it after an hour. That worried me more than the fact that it didnít start the first time this morning. But it did start the second time, the second time. Did I run off on my errands? No. I had lost confidence, so I drove the car around several blocks and, without stopping anywhere, brought it back and parked it in the garage.

Then, another hour after that pointless excursion, I tried it again. Since it started right away, I decided to chance running my errands. I knew I had several stops to make, but I wasnít really worried. A little worried, yes, until it started after I went into the post office. After that, at the Big Box Store and at the Office Place, I didnít even think twice. Well, twice maybe. But no more than that.

This made today very stressful. There appears to be nothing more I can do, short of trading the car in for something more reliable. Since I canít afford to do that now, and since Iíve always-always been able to start the car every time but once on any day it wouldnít start once, Iíll just have to try to accustom myself to its whims and fancies. I donít like it, but I donít see an alternative.

18 February 2006

Ominous clouds.

But it wasnít as bad a day as it could have been. After all, there was baseball on the radio, and the Giantsí announcers, Jon Miller and Dave Fleming, were in near-midseason form. The crowd in the ballpark somewhere in Arizona did its part, cheering when there was something to cheer for, so I guess they were ready, too. The sound of baseball on the radio is the perfect accompaniment to a day doing mindless data entry. It makes a bad day into a slightly better one.

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And who even cares about the game? Itís baseball, and itís the first game of the year, and it doesnít even count. Itís like T-ball, where nobody keeps score and everybody has fun. It was a little more fun for the Giants, who beat the Brewers, 10-5, but that doesnít even matter. It was a lot of fun for the Giantsí centerfielder, Randy Winn, who, after coming to the team from the Mariners late last season and making a big splash here, signed a three-year contract extension earlier this week. He was the first batter up in the first spring game and promptly hit a home run. Winn now leaves the Giants for most of the rest of the spring. He will be playing on the U.S. team in the World Baseball Classic, which starts tomorrow in Japan and concludes in two weeks in San Diego. The Giants have three other players participating in the WBC: Omar Vizquel on the Venezuelan team, and Moises Alou and Pedro Feliz on the Dominican team.

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One year ago: Imprudent
"Itís not that I shouldnít have to, just that I donít want to. Does that count for anything?"

Two years ago: Fever
"It isn't as good as a more highly motivated person would do, but I get high on getting by, as the song goes."

Three years ago: Slave of Duty
"It's a real accomplishment to know all the words, but you have to be able to say them."

Four years ago: Challenging Convention
"But all I had to deal with today was burning eyes, a stuffy head and a scratchy throat. You know, spring."

Five years ago: Middling Miracles
"Everything was happening at the same time, and none of it made sense."

Six years ago: Plausible Deniability
"If we wanted to make each other miserable, it would be incredibly easy."

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