Friday, July 4, 2014

Defining Moments of the Week before July 4th

I have now officially fallen off a bike a total of three times in my life.  They all happened within the the last year, the last two times being on my Raleigh Sports.  The most recent time was exactly one week ago when I was on the Raleigh on the way to the library and I turned too sharply on a thin layer of gravel scattered over cement.  I wiped out and the fall wasn't particularly forceful and I hopped back on the bike immediately.  One nice thing about step-through frames is that you can more "gracefully" roll clear when you fall instead of getting pinned under it.  I did that but somehow, I landed on my right wrist wrong and sprained it.  All the way to the library and back (10 miles total), the pain got worse.  I then vaccuumed the entire house using only my left hand. I did have some scrapes but 'twas "but a flesh wound."  My right hand started out being nearly useless for the better part of three days but it's been recovering and I'd even say that it's almost done recovering.  I carefully rode my bike last night for the first time since then.

During the fall, the bike was not harmed except that it landed on the drivetrain side and smushed the gear indicator chain against the ground.  Ouch.  The chain is about to break and no longer loosens into 3rd gear but I already ordered a replacement (a Sturmey-Archer Mk I indicator chain).

A few days later, I went to Twelve Oaks Mall with mom and every time I saw one of these trash cans, I immediately thought of the Wankel rotary engine that quite a few Mazdas have used in the past.

Pentel's Forte pencils are my all-time favorite.  They're tough, precise, and fit my hand perfectly.  I did have a Forte Pro II that lasted a good eight years before giving up last week but I have yet to even find a Forte Pro, which judging by the features, would be my favorite.  I have a total of three Fortes that are at least fifteen years old and I have been using two of them, a black 0.5 and a blue 0.7, daily and the letters have long since worn off.  There are two blue ones.

As shown above, the blue ones have different springs.  That is because the one to the right had been disassembled for eleven years.  In second grade, before I knew the value of these, I told my dad to take the spring out so I could use it on a Lego truck.  I even stuck it in a pencil sharpener once for some reason as you can probably tell.  I have since lost the spring and the lead tube but somehow kept the rest of the small parts.

I had been waiting for two years to finally put the pencil back together.  Two nights ago, I sifted through my entire box of pencils and pens looking for a suitable tube with a correct inner and outer diameter.  I finally found ONE inside a Sanford Zeze, which my family has a bunch of, that died within the last year.  I found a usable spring in my collection of springs yesterday and forced the brass assembly into the shortened, salvaged tube despite my wrist problem.  It worked! I have rebuilt my last Forte pencil! The only difference is that the "new" pencil does not have the characteristic loud (or "forte," haha) click of Fortes, but that's nothing.

May need to click or view larger

I'll finish up with a random post from one of the best all-around science pages on Facebook.  The caption:
"This is the actual transcription of the Apollo 10 flightcrew communications as recorded on the command module (CM). This particular section describes a moment when the crew have to deal with an unexpected intruder...

The Apollo 10 mission was flown May 18th to May 26th 1969.

CDR - Commander Thomas P. Stafford
CMP - Command module pilot John W. Young
LMP - Lunar module pilot Eugene A. Cernan"