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Skills For "Living The Era"

Discussion in 'Skills and Smarts' started by LizzieMaine, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. The big drawback is you're limited to the types of pots and pans, I'm not tossing aside my Magnalite Pros for anything!
  2. Aren't they glass topped too?

    I don't know, but I've left a burner on (onto which I could have later placed a pot or something) and been warned by the heat.

    My luck some of the metal in my body would conduct the heat. (Not being serious.)

    Give me a good old electric or gas or wood stove. I know my odds with those.

    Another safety: auto pilot lights as opposed to always on pilot lights. And self-lighting burners (but is it me or are those things the first to go on a stove?)
  3. BlueTrain

    BlueTrain Call Me a Cab

    I remember reading in a gun magazine back in the late 1950s, "Today a rock could kill you." I've never heard of that happening to anyone either. Likewise I've never personally known anyone who drowned.
  4. A thermostat and an automatic shut-off on a toaster is a safety. A couple of times I've left my flip-over toaster plugged in when I was distracted by something else, or simply because of wandering memory loss, and have only realized it after smelling hot metal. My rule now is to never use the toaster unless I've had my tea first.

    Another safety worth installing if you own vintage electronics is x/y AC bypass capacitors. Many older radios have capacitors directly across the AC line to filter out line noise, and quite a few of these have them in the circuit before the power switch so that they're always connected when the set is plugged in, regardless of whether the radio is being used. These are usually paper-type wax-impregnated components, and the paper breaks down with age -- and eventually, the cap will short, and you'll have a dead short across the power line, or from one side of the power line to ground. At best, it'll blow your fuse or trip your breaker -- at worst, it could start a fire or give you a severe electric shock. X/y safety caps are special heavy-duty components designed for use in such circuits, and when you're restoring an old radio you should *always* replace the original line bypass capacitors with this specific type. X-type go across the AC line, Y-type go from line to ground, depending on the specific circuit design of your set.

    I had an original-equipment line bypass cap short out in a little tabletop Emerson once, and it sounded like a pistol shot. Fortunately, the breaker tripped and my house didn't burn down, but I learned my lesson.
    David Conwill likes this.
  5. Hawleyhim

    Hawleyhim New in Town

    I still do.
  6. I knew a girl who drowned when I was in high school- she was a fellow swimmer when I was in athletics (on an opposing team in the district right next to mine, so I had met her, but she wasn't a friend). She was swimming at her school's pool early in the morning, and the lights on the water were so reflective that the lifeguards on duty didn't even see her go under. The lifeguards were her classmates, as was typical of the high school pools where I grew up.

    I had just qualified to take the lifeguarding course at my high school. I couldn't go through with it after that.
  7. Hawleyhim

    Hawleyhim New in Town

    I had a friend who drowned while we were swimming in a stock tank.we all had each other's backs or maybe not.it happened quickly.you can't see what's in dirty water.he was a marine,and a great guy.
  8. BlueTrain

    BlueTrain Call Me a Cab

    While I (still) never knew anyone who drowned, the son of our junior high school shop teacher was killed in a sledding accident one winter, although I didn't know him or ever see him. But someone I did know was killed in a car accident in my senior year in high school. That actually seems almost routine, sadly.
  9. I've known too many people who have drowned. It happens a lot around here.
  10. Not sure this fits the thread's title, but seems to fit where the thread is.

    Within five years of graduating high school, one girl from my class - a sweet quiet kid - had died of cancer (shook me to my core) and one boy had taken his own life (and, yes, he was of the good looking, well liked, jock type). Also, while in high school, a girl a class ahead of mine was killed by a drunk driver.

    Finally, about twenty years after graduating, a girl in my class had married, divorced, was dating again and her ex-husband broke into her house and shot and killed his ex-wife and her boyfriend - WTF! That was a local page-one story that a friend of mine who stayed in the town sent to me.

    I think about all four of these deaths several times a year. They effected me more than the deaths of several co-workers over the years who were close to me, I think, in part, because knowing the four so young - when you all felt invulnerable - their deaths felt more surprising (and the one who was killed was the most dramatic death that ever happened to someone I knew).
  11. Yep, I went thru the same thing. Two kids in my graduating class killed themselves within a couple of years after graduation, and one of them was someone who was sort of a friend. He had been a "class clown" type, always joking and fooling around, until the day he came home from work and put a shotgun in his mouth.

    About a year after that someone I casually knew was murdered -- he was a guy who went to the church I attended at the time, and was a middle-aged nerd type who'd been trying to sell a car in a classified ad. He took this young kid out out for a test drive, and the kid drove him out in the woods and blew his head off. They found him buried in a pile of leaves a few weeks later, and the kid who did it just got out of prison a year or two ago. There was never any explanation for it -- it seems to have been a purely random crime.

    Loss is a terrible thing, and it mounts up the older you get. Eventually, if you live long enough, there's little left of your heart but a mass of scar tissue.
  12. BlueTrain

    BlueTrain Call Me a Cab

    I've known only one person who was murdered, which happened in the town where I went to college. But I've known six or seven people who killed themselves. They were all elderly except for one. I still can't remember knowing anyone who drowned.

    Joan Rivers supposedly said that everyone in their right mind is always on the brink of tears but maybe it was someone else. I understand what it means, though.
  13. As variation on that theme - and a very true theme it is as sometimes I simply feel broken from all that life has thrown at me - what I worry about - a lot - is that my girlfriend's Dad, at 86, has lost most of his friends and I think it is really starting to effect him.

    We've developed a good friendship over the years, so I email with him almost every day and my girlfriend and I call frequently (and ask for his opinion and advice so he knows he's still valued) as I'm afraid he's going to start to feel isolated and depressed.

    He does have one really good friend left, so that's great, but he lost several recently. Losing one's friends as one gets old is an unfortunate reality.
  14. BlueTrain

    BlueTrain Call Me a Cab

    Maybe I'm lucky in not having many (none, really) close friends. The people we see are either my wife's friends or relatives. I lost most of my relatives over fifteen years ago and my mother never made it to fifty. It is little comfort knowing that everybody goes through the same things, if there's enough time.
  15. A young man I graduated with and sat in many classes with, murdered his parents. Suffice to say, they tortured my classmate and his brother in ways that no person deserves, yet alone a child. Psychological, sexual, and physical torture. The children had been removed by CPS and placed with their grandparents, but when the grandparents died the kids went back.

    The younger brother begged at my classmates trial for leniency and not to invoke the death penalty. There are rumors that the parents were concretely planning on going after the younger brother's children (perhaps kidnapping them), so the elder brother (my classmate) made sure they never touched his nephews.

    But to the outside world, his parents were these amazing middle class accountants who kept a nice yard. Beware of what you think you see when it comes to child abuse.

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