My wife in her studio painting. A friend was over here remodeling our
dining room...I figure today would be a good day to trim the tree and
clean out the rain gutter>
I made sure the ladder was firmly anchored so it would not slip...Friend
came out to take a break and saw me up on the ladder.
I told him not to tell my wife I was up there as she would not like it>
Later when the three of us were in the kitchen having coffee...he asks
me ...with wife listening of course...
So, when can I tell her...in 20 years?
I think she figured it out anyway as I was full of dead leaves and plant
Amazingly...none got in my hair though.
66 years old, both knees replaced 3 yrs ago
At one time, I loved going aloft on a swaying ship. I would have jumped
at the chance to go aloft in a storm. In my late 30s, I suddenly became
uneasy on roofs. My balance seemed fine on the ground, but I didn't
trust it on a roof.
I'd anchor the base of a ladder in case I had trouble getting off or on
at the top. I'd move slowly. If I had to go near an edge, I'd hold a
One day when I was 60, 70 mph gusts came up, like a thunderstorm without
thunder, clouds, or rain. I saw the gusts catch my singles at the gable
and begin tearing them off wholesale.
Feeling an adrenaline surge, I threw up my ladder. I didn't bother to
secure it because the gusts pushed it against the eave. It might shake,
but I figured it would probably be there when I needed to come down.
I ran up the ladder with my hands full of shingles, nails, and a hammer.
On the roof in the gusts, I felt as agile and confident as a young
sailor in a storm.
Balance comes from three inputs: the inner ears, foot pressure, and
vision. Contradictory inputs aboard ship can cause nausea. When you
step onto a 6/12 hip roof, your brain must resolve seemingly
contradictory inputs, and momentary confusion could be fatal. The reason
I was so agile in the emergency was that adrenaline had increased
respiration, which had reduced blood CO2, which had sped up my brain.
Normal people breathe faster in high places. My balance on roofs was
dangerously slow because my respiration didn't usually increase. I
Research showed that the respiration control in the brain normally
changes CO2 levels several times in 24 hours, and that it's triggered by
potassium. I read elsewhere that many people, especially some men,
require far more than the RDA of potassium.
Potatoes and beans are much better sources than Gatorade. I began eating
potato every morning and beans most evenings. One day I sawed limbs
with an extension ladder and a 15-foot pole saw. I sawed the last ones
from the roof. As soon as I stepped onto the sloped roof, I found
myself breathing hard, as if I'd exerted myself climbing the ladder.
That couldn't have been it. I'd been climbing that ladder and sawing
for a couple of hours without breathing hard.
My respiration center was calling for a sudden reduction on CO2 because
the situation challenged my balance. In a minute my breathing slowed
and I felt great. I didn't need no stinking safety line to stand at the
eave and reach out to saw.
I wouldn't have had to endure all those years of slow balance if
somebody had told me to eat more beans like Donald Trump's daring
Mexican window washers.
On Saturday, July 18, 2015 at 1:52:17 PM UTC-7, philo wrote:
I was a Russian interpreter back in early 70s. Was sent TDY to a missile m
onitoring ship for a cruies off Kamchatka to monitor Soviet ICBM tests. We
boared in Hawaii, one of my crew members got seasick walking up the gangpl
ank! Stayed in his bunk all the way to Alaska and down the island chain. F
inally had to send him off in a helicopter.
Seasickness seems to come from conflicting balance signals. When your
brain says, "To hell with it!" you've got sea legs. Ignorance is bliss.
My boat was built on the Great Lakes to maintain buoys and break ice,
but admirals have a strange sense of humor. They'd kept her on the
North Atlantic since 1943. In fair weather, we'd roll 30 degrees, like a
7-in-12 roof. For days on end, we'd roll 45 degrees. We wouldn't get any
sleep. You might find a way to strap yourself into your bunk, but as
soon as you drifted off, your head would start flopping.
Trying to balance was a waste of effort. Passageways had to be at least
4 feet wide. If they'd been narrower, we would have dragged along the
sides when we tried to walk. They were wide enough to give us a good
bounce when our shoulders hit the bulkheads. We'd carom down the hall
not caring which way was up.
Before hitting port, we usually had a couple of days of placid water
where the ship stayed pretty much upright so we could, like babies,
learn to walk before going ashore. Once at St. Johns, the sea was fairly
rough right up to the harbor entrance. I went to Woolworths. Out of the
corner of my eye, I kept seeing merchandise falling and turning just in
time to grab it. I felt like a bull in a china shop. Popeye didn't have
his land legs yet.
When they wrote the song, "What Shall we do with the Drunken Sailor,"
maybe that sailor hadn't had a drink in weeks.
On Halloween with granddaughter wife noticed 81 year old neighbor was
missing a tooth. When asked, he said he fell off the roof.
Another neighbor, 75, was killed by partially fallen tree he was
These are fun activities that I've given up.
On Friday, July 17, 2015 at 4:19:59 PM UTC-7, Frank wrote:
I'm 80 Been heating with wood since 1976. Still out there cutting but my "
work" day is down to 3 or 4 hours. Ladders? I swore off of them a few yea
rs ago but got my hat knocked off under a black walnut last week, out with
ladder and up it with my top handle chainsaw. Cut branch leaving a stub, c
ut stum and it nailed my nose and chin as it fell.
Knees? Nope but I did have both hips replaced about 15 years ago. Didn't
slow me down except for the recovery period. From the stories I heard, I d
On Saturday, July 18, 2015 at 12:35:42 PM UTC-7, Harry K wrote:
"work" day is down to 3 or 4 hours. Ladders? I swore off of them a few y
ears ago but got my hat knocked off under a black walnut last week, out wit
h ladder and up it with my top handle chainsaw. Cut branch leaving a stub,
cut stum and it nailed my nose and chin as it fell.
t slow me down except for the recovery period. From the stories I heard, I
(added, hit send too soon) I do NOT want anything to do with knee replaceme
When I was in the Army I took leave with a friend of mine to visit his
grandfather in rural England.
He was about 80 and heated his house only with wood he cut himself.
Me and my buddy decided to help him and went at it with a 2 man saw.
He came over laughing and said we'd never get it cut that way and just
did it himself.
On Saturday, July 18, 2015 at 2:44:15 PM UTC-7, Stormin Mormon wrote:
I bought a old ramshackle ?house? that had an "antique" bedset, bed and dre
sser, wife was enamored with it. It was in really horrible condition and w
as obviously not "antique" at all, 40s or 50s vintage. When she became dis
abled and in the nursing home, it disappeared in my stove.
On Saturday, July 18, 2015 at 2:31:33 PM UTC-5, ItsJoanNotJoann wrote:
I put those gutter guards on some of my gutters. However, in some places the gutters were too much above or below the shingle edge to use them. Perhaps my gutters have too much slope but how do you deal with that situation?
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.