Saturday, April 2, 2016

Day 2300

Just as I predicted, the lawnmower died about ten seconds after I hauled it out to the front lawn. Despite seeing a reassuring green light on the battery charger, it was clear that the battery needed to be replaced. It wouldn't hold a charge at all. I removed the problematic battery, put the mower back in the green house, and headed for the battery store. The repair guy even remembered recelling this battery before. He said he could refurbish the battery pack while I was grocery shopping and that was good enough for me. A few hours later, the battery was back in the charger, getting ready for a second attempt to mow the grass.

Why aren't batteries more reliable?  Every time I tell Janet that I'm interested in getting a Tesla, she tells me I'm nuts, reminding me that I spend half my life complaining about batteries. Laptops, phones, cameras, watches, recorders, and even lawn mowers immediately turn into worthless piles of junk when the batteries start to fail.  It wasn't so bad when you could just pop in a new battery and get back to work, but increasingly batteries aren't removable. Replacing my laptop battery required a trip to the Apple store. Ditto for my phone. Odd batteries, like the one found in my lawn mower, require a special technician who can take the case apart and recell the battery. It's all a giant nuisance. Somebody told me that the Tesla is powered by 8,000 small lithium-ion batteries that are all wired together. When those things start to fail after four or five years, an old fashioned gas guzzler isn't going to seem so bad.

I was planning to write another article today, but dealing with the faulty lawn mower battery consumed most of the afternoon. At least the story has a happy ending. The mower works now and the front yard looks much better. The first time I mow the lawn each Spring, it always seems much harder than it did the year before. It shouldn't be this way. I'm active. I walk the dogs everyday. I work out. And after all this, the lawn mower keeps getting heavier every year. I blame it all on muscle atrophy caused by taking statin drugs. My doctor still wants me to take statins though, claiming that a heart attack is much worse than a little muscle atrophy.

The weather was just about perfect today. The temperature was in the low seventies. The humidity was low. There didn't even seem to be much pollen in the air. Naturally, the dogs enjoyed their walks and Dot even felt like wandering around in the back yard smelling things. I had to wander around with her, holding up her rear legs with the harness, but that's OK. Dealing with Dot takes a lot of patience, but it's worth it when you can see that she's still able to enjoy herself.

I'm not sure what I'll do tomorrow. After mowing the grass, I feel like I've already had my weekly workout. I'll probably go to the gym anyway though. When your other alternatives are vacuuming and cleaning the office, the gym starts to look pretty good.

Miracle is today's Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day