My Name is Tom, and I’m a geek

Good morning.  My name is Tom S, and I'm a complete geek.

(Good morning, Tom)

Yesterday morning, I awoke about 0500.  I went to the kitchen for a glass of water, and I noticed Kitten sitting out on the balcony.  It was a nice enough morning, cool and clear, so I went out to say hello.  While I was idly scratching behind her ears, I noticed a bright light off to the west-northwest. 

I tried to reason out what it was.  "It's Mars, which is fairly bright of late, and which looks even brighter as it nears the horizon.  Or, based on the color, it could be Saturn, although Saturn isn't usually that bright.  It could be Venus, The Morning Star.  No, that would be in the eastern sky, and it would be white.  It's not twinkling, so that means it's not a star.  Hmm…"

The cat finally bit me.  Apparently I'd been reasoning this aloud, and she was embarrassed that one of the other cats in the 'hood would hear her human talking geeksense.

AHA!

I dashed back to my room–okay, I padded slowly (I've never really been a dasher, especially after the recent surgery)–and fired up the Power Book. 

A normal, non-complete geek person would've just observed the light, enjoyed it, and drifted back into pleasant, unfrenzied slumber.  Not me.   I needed KNOWLEDGE! I had to know what the light was!

"It's Mars…" I decided to test this hypothesis first.  Hmm.

AHA! A few deft keystrokes, and my quest for knowledge was on!

Crudmuffins.  Mars had already set, and there were no other objects of such magnitude off toward the west. 

Maybe it was that spy satellite that's supposed to hit us soon, burning up in the atmosphere!

No, it wasn't falling.

A ROCKET! Maybe NASA's launching a new spy satellite! From my cave, we can see rockets take off from Cape Canaveral, especially on a clear night!

No, Cape Canaveral is the other direction. 

An ICBM of some kind? Maybe one of the world's nuclear nutjobs has launched a nuke at us, and I'm seeing the…

…again, it's not falling or flaring. 

What would Superman do? It's a bird, it's a…

Could it be? An airplane? It didn't appear to be moving, but if it…

Type-type-type.

THERE IT IS! The red plane flying over Dunedin? The Boeing 737-800 at 6000 feet, on final approach to Tampa International?? THAT is my mysterious light! It didn't appear to move, because it was flying toward me.  And…

…And I realized that I was a complete geek.  It was five in the morning.  I saw a light in the sky.  Rather than say, "There's a light in the sky.  Pretty!", then finish my water and go back to bed, I had to use all of this great technology–all the vast resources of the Internet–to discover that I saw an airplane.  Have I always been like this?

A couple weeks ago while I was in the hospital, Nurse Elaine from Maine said she thought it was raining.  "I thought I heard rain earlier, and my shoulder aches.  My arthritic shoulder aches when it rains this time of year."

Hah.  Her shoulder aches.  Sorry, Elaine from Maine, RN, I'm a man of science.  I need a little bit more than "my shoulder aches."  That sounded like some sort of old-time farm myth, like "If the cow farts three times, there'll be a drought," or whatnot.  I deal in facts.  The last forecast I saw didn't mention rain.  I hadn't seen any lightning.  I couldn't see rain from my window.  I couldn't see much from my window, granted, but it was damn sure not raining. Q.E. freakin' D.

We made a bet: if it was raining, I'd spring for a couple bags of Cheetos.  If it wasn't–in other words, once I proved myself correct–she'd buy the Cheetos. 

Smugly, I reached for the Power Book.  After the requisite bleeps and burbles of connecting via phone modem (what, was I in Laura Ingalls Wilder's childhood cabin?), I was finally on-line.  A few more keystrokes, and VOILA!

Raining like piss from a boot. 

A deal's a deal.  I rolled over to reach the bedside table where my money was, and I winced. 

"What's wrong, Tom?"
"Eh, nothing, really.  Just my right knee's kinda gimpy."  I handed her two dollars for Cheetos.

She took the bills and smiled.  "Yeah, that figures.  It says in your chart your right knee has some arthritis."

At that moment, somewhere in Pinellas County, a cow farted three times.  We haven't had a drop of rain since.

Lord knows, I'd have felt it in my knee.

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7 Responses to “My Name is Tom, and I’m a geek”

  1. HEHEHE. My husband and I regularly get into arguments that have to be settled on the computer.Truth is TRUTH, right? If I think it's going to snow six inches and he says eight, we must check the authorities. If I think a movie came out in 95 and he says 96? Authorities. If I say so in so dated such and such and he says, "no way!" Authorities.The computer is a godsend. Otherwise it'd be bare knuckle brawling to see who has the most authority sans backup. šŸ™‚

  2. Thank God for IMDB.com. "See? I TOLD you the costume designer was the same as the one from Pan's Labyrinth!" Hope the move is going well, and that the banshees are settling in (Shushie and the Banshees? I couldn't resist).

  3. I really like the little cow and tractor in the image of the night sky.

  4. I used to be good friends with a woman who owned a health food/nutrition store. She was a bit of a nut, which is why I liked her, in part. She used to tell me she'd start getting depressed when the barometric pressure started dropping (like when a low pressure weather movement comes through, i.e. rain), because her body was very sensitive to pressure changes and the end result was depression. I just felt like it was a really long explanation of saying she was sad because it was raining. šŸ™‚

  5. Does Kitten know you spend that much time on your computer following trains of geek thought?Eliza stops me by jumping in my lap, right between me and the keyboard, so I either have to type around her or suffer her wrath (usually a good nip on the wrist). If I turn my attention to her instead of the computer, she rewards me with purrs and licks. ("Good girl! Good human! Stop that loathsome pecking.")I think cats are smarter than people in that they know when a flashing light is just a flashing light. But I probably would have done the same thing you did, though with less science, more "wow what was that."

  6. And I thought I was geeky. (You take the cake, Meester.)I Google almost everything that pops up in conversations, after the conversation. And when asked something I know the answer to, I Google it as well to double-check (and make damn sure I'm right).

  7. Ah, a man of science! And a cat who sort appreciates him! LOL — that's pretty cool that you knew where to look. Befroe you told us what it was, I thought maybe it was related to that "rare" celestial event we just had up here (did you too??) when Mars and Venus were both visible in the morning? Was it Mars and Venus? Nuts. Now I"m not sure. But it was two planets, VERY BRIGHT in the morning sky and all the weather people were freaking out because it happens so infreqeutnly. Now why didn't I look that up on the computer? Didn't know what to look for, how to search it. could have gone to the local TV stations site, hunh? Didn't think of it. So there it is. I should have asked one of those cows!BTW — I favorite-d this post. It's PEREFCT. Thank you for the good smiles and the info!

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