Wednesday, February 10th, 2010
10:26 pm - Be Prepared...  
Be prepared! That's the Boy Scout's marching song,
Be prepared! As through life you march along.
Be prepared to hold your liquor pretty well,
Don't write naughty words on walls if you can't spell.


So, although snowpocalypse II hasn't really dumped a lot of snow on us yet, the wind is whistling out there. The power went out around 8. Given the weather, I figured it would take awhile to fix. Not a serious problem, I thought, because I am prepared! There are two fluorescent camp lanterns sitting in my hall closet.

Except that when I made my way to the closet and tried to turn them on, nada. Worse, when I managed to pry off the battery cover of the bigger of the two lanterns, the dim glow of my Maglite showed it to be caked with the evil crystals of battery leakage. So I took it over to the kitchen sink and cleaned the thing out, mostly by feel. Fortunately I had a couple of twelve packs of Duracells in the closet (thank you Sam's Club), but when I installed fresh batteries there was still no light. Took another look inside with the flashlight and saw some corrosion on some of the connectors, so I cleaned those with some sandpaper obtained after a harrowing trip down and up the basement stairs. Reassembled everything, and this time there was a quick flash from one of the tubes. A little jiggling of the switch, and I had light. Go me!

Then I looked inside the other one. No leakage, just dead batteries. Piece o'cake. Put that one aside just in case, and grabbed the big one and my laptop, and headed for the living room to wait things out. Put the lamp down on the end table, and it went out. Jiggling the switch got me a couple of flashes, but not much more. Bother.

Still, the little lamp was working fine, so I settled in with the computer. Have I mentioned that I got myself a new laptop for Christmas. My old laptop was 11 years old, so it was time. The new one is an ASUS with a 10 hour battery which I had just charged. It came with Windows 7, which has been an, um, interesting experience. Anyway, I turned it on, and then I remembered that neither the cable modem nor the wireless router had any power. Feh. No internet for me.

Then, about an hour later, the power came back on against all expectations. Hooray! Now to figure out what's going on with the big lantern.