Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Soft blows

My neighbor gave me the most interesting version of the hairy eyeball today. It could be because I was outside in the uncharming outfit of long-sleeved shirt advertising the Kodiak Crab Fest mountain biking race, a fluffy purple cap, yoga pants, and socks with sandals. Yes, you now have an excuse to drink and get that frazzled housewife image out of your head. You're welcome.

Or it could be because I was holding a rubber mallet, carefully working my way down the length of my car and tapping gently on the ice encasing it. I'd already broken a door free, so I had the car running as I tapped at door handles, pillars, roof racks, and side panels. When it comes to uncasing a car, this isn't my first rodeo. As long as you're very gentle, tapping just enough to fracture the ice, you can get large sheets of ice to break loose and crash painfully down on sock-footed sandals. The more ice broken loose, the faster the car will warm up and deice the glass, the lights, and the general rest of the car you don't want to try thumping with a mallet.

I smiled at my neighbor, trying to be friendly despite the stare. "Always best to get the ice off before it gets really cold and freezes down hard, eh?" The neighbor drew back a little, and proffered an uncertain smile.

When my feet were quite cold enough, I wandered back inside for a cuppa while leaving the car running. The defroster had gotten the windshield clear-ish by that point (the wiper blades were another story). As the tea kettle clicked off, I heard the most interesting WHAM! WHAM! WHAM! from the neighbor's driveway, like someone was wailing away on the inch of ice encasing their minivan. Then their engine started, and idled in the driveway just like mine.

Was I supposed to offer my rubber mallet?


  1. Newbies. You can only show them how to do it, but the performance is up to them.

    I wonder how they'll explain the divots to their insurance rep? :)

  2. Hail, Rev. Paul. Give 'em hail, and they better be happy about it.

  3. ROTF... THAT is a picture that's going to be stuck in the head for a while... And one is curious how many dents they put in their car!

  4. If you were truly evil, you would have suggested boiling water to clear the locks and windshield.

    I tend to just use the meaty side of a gloved fist to cause the first few cracks. I'm less likely to get frustrated and start swinging for the fences.