To Everything (Turn, Turn, Turn)…

So last week, I took an ill-advised bicycle ride with an imminent storm brewing. As I headed into the storm I actually turned around but then thought, what the hell, and turned around again continuing toward it. I was almost done with my route and heading home when the rain came down in sheets and once I scaled the hill I was on, I took shelter. The upshot of all this is that my bicycle speedometer shorted out somehow, although it might not have had anything to do with the rain and might have been, coincidentally, minutes before the storm when my chain came off and in a storm of my own (cussing), I took the little computer out of it’s chassis and aggressively flipped the bike on the side of the road to put the chain back on. Anyway, it was caput and I got this…

I wasn’t upset about having to get a new speedometer because the old one was old. I have a tendency to use things up or wear them out as is evidenced clearly by my car (and all my previous cars). I wear my clothes until they’re threadbare, and my house (sewer system specifically) doesn’t get much preventative care and I just wait til things go bad until I act. And so it goes with the speedometer which was 15+ years old and preceded the ability to purchase things on the internet or maybe even the internet itself. So I thought, it’ll be a welcome upgrade as the old one had limited functionality. Of course, I could never entertain the idea of cycling without gathering statistics about my riding. This wonderful little gadget has all kinds of functionality that the old one didn’t (most of it useless) such as a thermometer and another thing it comes with is the worst installation directions I’ve seen in a long time or maybe even ever. The written part of the directions only address setting the computer functions and the actual mounting of the units is wonderfully illustrated in cryptic pictograms sans actual text as shown here…

Now I’m not a big directions person and have been known to jettison them before reading them at all but there are a couple details about mounting this that seem indispensable, most important of them being how the magnet on the spoke lines up with the magnet on the fork. No mention of this anywhere and the Mayan hieroglyphs aren’t clear. So I keep adjusting it and re-adjusting it and spinning the wheel, looking at the readout, over and over and… nothing but zero mph (spinning the rear wheel should register a couple m’sph). I begin to think that I purchased a lemon and decide to ride my bike to the bike shop and have them figure out what is wrong. So I arrive at the bike shop and kid about 18 years old comes out, glances at the mounting, immediately reaches down and clicks the little computer, snapping it into place. He spins the wheel and it works fine. So all that time I just hadn’t had the little computer snapped into place. All this to point out how I did my little part to further the stereotype of us codgers and our lack of technical acuity, although of course, this was in truth a lack of mechanical acuity. So, Luddites we are no matter the truth. Along the spinning, turning theme, I pulled the cord on our Zyliss salad spinner the last time the other day and it snapped. I went to get a new one and they had 4 different kinds but not the Zyliss. As I abhor shopping, I decided on this one although it works with a lever (there was one with a cord but the display one’s cord was already frayed near snapping)…

So I take it to the cashier and I’m preoccupied with whether the lever controlled spinner is actually going to last or if it’s just a piece of junk and I get in line. The funny thing is the conversation that ensues… a type of conversation that seems to follow me around. There’s a woman ahead of me in line that turns and looks at me, then smiling says… “yer gun’ love that”. Being the social misfit that I am, my mind is reeling at this point because, one, I immediately think what I always think when someone who is actually my age is talking to me… why is the old person talking to me? It’s only later that I realize that I’m as old if not older than they are. Second and more importantly, because she broke me out of my reverie about the quality of my purchase, I assume that she means that she has the exact spinner that I’m purchasing. So I say, you own one of these (in my mind, I mean the exact make and model)? She says, “oh yeah, ya jus put yer lettuce er whatever in there an’ it spins around real fast-like and then it’s clean”. Now I’m taken aback because I realize, somewhat to my amazement that she thinks this guy behind her in line that happens to be about the same age has never seen or used a salad spinner before and she’s happy to be the salad spinner welcoming committee for yours truly… the salad spinning virgin. So, as smoothly as I do all my small talking I say… so you have one like this with the lever? Undaunted, she says, “no I got one a them old ones with a string”. I say, well they have one of those but the string on the demo was already frayed. I think this went right over her head and then the cashier interrupts but not before she has one last testimonial and she says, “I put some stuff in mine about a week ago, spun it up and took it out o’ the fridge yesterday and ate it up and it was still good”. Need I say more? If you haven’t used one before, just refer to her statements and you will know exactly the purpose and procedure involved of this mysterious device. Continuing with the spinning, turning theme, I would just say that my head is spinning from the lack of turning of the wheel in the last day or so and of course there’s always my favorite turning and spinning thing…


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11 Responses to “To Everything (Turn, Turn, Turn)…”

  1. Patricia Griffin Says:

    you crack me up. think i’ll go spin some lettuce.

  2. Michael Kline Says:

    Excellent spin on things, Jim! Sofia looks like a whirling dervish! Keep on!

  3. Zygote Says:


  4. meredith Says:

    I have a salad spinner given to me by my father-in -law, who hated salad.
    he was cleaning the kitchen one day and pulled it out -handed it to me and demanded I take it home.
    It is old and useful-like me…. and you….
    Months later I am at the in-laws and my Mother -in-law is looking all through the cabinets and finally says to me,’I use to have a salad spinner and I can’t find it any where.”
    I had to laugh!
    Thanks for spinning another great story!

  5. ron Says:

    Good story about the salad spinner Jim.

  6. gary rith Says:

    Le BUG 🙂

  7. ang Says:

    I am no longer concerned about the thoughts that go through my head on purchasing any item!! and i just shake the lettuce bit that’s a whole other conversation!!!

  8. Eugene Hon Says:

    That is a very nice looking salad-spinner Jim. I love salads, especially chicken salad and mainly making the dressings. At one time I use to purchases extra virgin olive oil and flavour them with herbs, trying out different flavours with green salads – one therefore need’s the salad leaves to be very dry, to coat well with the flavoured oils and vinegar’s (also flavoured if you like). I like french styled vinaigrettes. Salads are fabulous if picked fresh – crispy and delicious. MMMMM

  9. Peter Says:

    Delightful post Jim, others have picked up on the salads I see, but one of the great lines for me was “I immediately think what I always think when someone who is actually my age is talking to me… why is the old person talking to me? It’s only later that I realize that I’m as old if not older than they are.” Happens to me a lot!

    Loved the copy of the “Mayan hieroglyphs”. I see what you mean! They’re bad enough as instructions as to be a work of art! I do wonder about the origins of instruction diagrams like those. Are they made by the same clearly inebriated “think tanks” that make up the jokes for Christmas Crackers, or names for Japanese cars? Could it all be part of a plot to drive us all insane?? Or do the diagrams contain some subliminal message, whose real purpose is yet to be revealed??

  10. Connie Says:

    I’ve missed your blog!! I didn’t realize how much until I read this post. I’ve been soooo busy lately, that reading of blogs have gone to the way side. I’ve only been FBing. What a great post to come back to. Thanks for the entertainment. I’m off to buy a salad spinner!!

  11. Ningoolio Says:

    Holy Smoke. This has to be one of my favorite posts. I have a Zyliss too that I got at Goodwill and I love it so much that…I can’t express it. And I know what you mean about people younger than you who you think are older than you. And man, I guess some things never change in Kentucky, though I still love it so. Thanks good buddy for cheering me up today.

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