Thursday, March 08, 2007


Fun at 10 Below

When life gives you lemons, blah, blah, blah. Actually, for a person born and raised in Southern California, below zero weather is pretty exotic. When I first moved to Vermont, I stood out in zero degree weather to try to register the reality of what zero meant. (I never really figured it out.) Then I did what the natives do--learned to dress for the part and got on with the activities of daily living.

Then I read about Japanese tourists in Alaska.

They go to Chena Hot Springs Resort in the dead of winter to see the aurora borealis. They splash about in the hot springs. Braving 50-below temperatures, they blow soap bubbles which immediately turn into solid little Christmas ornaments. They throw boiling water into the air to watch it freeze into little marbles. They stick bananas outside to turn solid and use them to drive nails.

I wasn't interested in turning a banana into a tool, but I am an inveterate bubble blower. I raced over to Dan and Whit's general store to replenish my bubble making supply. My spouse read the label on the bottle. "Ages four and up," she said tonelessly. I headed outdoors.

I blew a few bubbles that floated around uncertainly and then popped. No Christmas ornaments there. That's the difference between ten and fifty below, I shrugged to myself.

But as I turned to go back indoors, I saw one lost little bubble, separated from its fellows, lurching through the frozen air. It looked wounded, like a leathery little fruit that's sat in the basket too long and collapsed on one side. I blew a few more and realized that I'd get no closer to Christmas ornaments.

So I returned to the roaring fire in the woodstove and resumed the regular fun at ten below: noodling on my novel, bitching about the Scooter, Dick, Dubya and Dick, and working the Times crossword.

Someday we'll get serious about aurora borealis and do it right. Maybe we'll go at Christmastime.

Big research update!!

It's 30 below today, so I decided on a new set of trials (bubble scientist that I am)... this time 87% fewer broke; instead they wobbled around and finally collapsed like tiny plastic bags.

50 below must freeze them quickly enough to keep them nice and round while they harden up.

I must slip out of my lab coat now and go to work.

Au revoir.
Wow! How fun! I love your posts.

I have a special request. You are the best photoshopper ever. Could you please put W' head on Matt Sanchez's porn star body? Thanks!
As a former resident of the New England area(Bahston)I never tried the bubble thing. I now feel I was screwed out of one of life's natural pleasures..and I am seeking a therapist to deal with this.
Great scientific research. Wow, you must be some kind of scientist or something. Keep up the good research! I love it Lulu!!!!! Hey, tell your spouse to drop the toneless commentary regarding your adventures. Greatness needs support, enthusiasm and the occasional leaping from ones chair beyond their full height while shouting, "Eureka!"
I cannot imagine being in weather that cold.
In Texas today it's a perfect 72 degrees with fluffy clouds and doves cooing in the trees.
I think I'll go out and shoot some fer dinner.
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