Saturday, January 28, 2012

Throw in the Towel


My future as an inventor has sunk. I’ve dismantled the brilliant experiment in the last post and tossed the address of the Patent people.

I don’t know beans about thermodynamics. I’m just an English major who can spell it (a long crush on Einstein). What I know about mechanics, I learned in “Humanities 471: Human Values in Engineering.” My final project was sci-fi story (got an A!).

My father was a mechanical man. He designed complex heating and air-conditioning installations, using two tools: the tape measure that lived on his belt, and crude shapes he scribbled on napkins, paper plates, bits torn from little spiral tablets. He nearly failed high school, then spent his life inventing mechanical solutions.

He didn’t teach me those things, and he enjoyed my ignorance. When I was 17, I cracked the head of my 1960 Studebaker Lark convertible by letting the radiator run dry. He handed me the keys to an old VW Bug and sternly told me to be sure I kept its radiator full. Then he fell out of his chair, cackling, when he heard I’d asked a gas-station attendant to check the Bug’s water. That’s how I learned about air-cooled engines. Thanks, Dad.

So here I sit, hopes dashed in my venture into the use of convection-heated shelter for a wild cat. The cat loves the food but scorns the toaster bed. “I have not failed,” Thomas Edison once said. “I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”

I’m going to put out food for the cat and stick to inventing sentences and poems.

13 comments:

Birdie said...

Chris! you tried!! and that's what counts ... it's not you but the cat ... poor little fellow ... but i know it will always be grateful for food!

Lou said...

This reminds me of my son when he was in addiction and homeless. Many well meaning people tried to get him to sleep in a bed. But he wasn't ready.

Shakespeare said...

Oh, dear, too bad your father couldn't find the same self-worth in TEACHING you instead of finding ways to make fun of you.

And it's okay not to succeed. People who never fail are pretty snooty, and that wouldn't look so good on you. (It doesn't look good on anybody, actually.)

Brian Miller said...

i agree wiht birdie...you tried...and you do just fine with words and sentences...smiles.

Kristin H. said...

I am enchanted by your ingenuity. I thought the idea was brilliant.

My fellow massage co-worker and I are always at work trying to develop the next great thing to hit the bodywork profession. Unfortunately, there's much needed in our profession lol.

Steve E said...

Anna is gone for a week, and you just reminded me to put out food for the cat. He always has water, of course.

So I THANK YOU!
And Bert (kitty) thanks you ALSO.

PEACE, Chris!
MEEEOWWW!

Teri and the cats of Curlz and Swirlz said...

It took a few versions of a heated shelter for the feral I feed for him to use it. Didn't use the dog igloo, or the insulated rough tote with one opening, but uses the clear storage box with openings on each end. There is a heated pad inside, as there was with all the other versions I made but I think he felt trapped in the dark boxes with only 1 opening out.

myheartslovesongs said...

maybe by next winter the cat will gradually have gotten used to you and your scent enough that he'll accept more than food. {smile}

wow! a 1960 Studebaker Lark convertible! so sad what happened to it. {i'm not going to talk about what i've done to cars.}

dani ♥

the walking man said...

HEY!! We have 9998 more ways to try!

Beth Niquette said...

What a noble try--my cat would have loved you forever! lol Have a great weekend.

Syd said...

So neat, Chris. Hey, I once cracked the head on my Mustang also. I learned to be a gear head after that.

I have been struggling with rage in my father-in-law. I don't know much about dementia and Alzheimer's but I know that you do. Perhaps you have some insight into all of this.

ScottF said...

you're such a softie Chris :-)

We occasionally have cats lurking about and we've fed them a time or two. I recall one such kitty cat that my wife actually picked up and brought home to live outside the house. Things appeared to be going well and this cat (who apwas either sick or injured) was healing nicely, getting along well until the day our Jack Russell Terrier escaped the front door. Cosmo (our JRT) had been watching this cat for days, longing for her opportunity. Cosmo's patience paid off and our girl got the chase she had been waiting for. That poor cat probably wishes to this day that she'd never met my wife lol.

Thankfully Cosmo never caught the kitty, but they sure caused a ruckus in our front beds and landscaping lol. My wife no longer feeds or brings home stray kitties.

Carrie Burtt said...

You have done your best, and that is all any of us can do. This cat is fortunate to have you looking out for him. :-)

Albert Einstein Quotes