Josef and I, newly engaged, will be traveling in a 1989 Pace Arrow RV. The RV right now is stationed in Hicksville waiting for liftoff. Like the space shuttle Atlantis that launched two months past schedule, inclement weather and maintenance needs have pushed back our departure.
To prepare our mobile home for the long journey, much work was required. Now only a little work remains unfinished before we can embark. Below you’ll see a list of the work that we have done in the weeks after Christmas. For a more succinct summary, you can also read the list in the RV shape above.
1. CUT wall to install a second, larger garage door in the shop. This way the RV could fit through and we could work indoors.
2. INSTALLED the fuel efficiency implement The Tornado, whose claims promise better gas mileage
3. CHISELED out sun-cracked sealant from the seams on roof and RESEALED with new silicone sealant. This took care of a leak.
4. REPAINTED the roof
5. REPLACED and REWIRED monitor panel above stove. The original was destroyed by the fire.
6. CUT out and REPATCHED two areas of the exterior wall that had buckled with water damage
7. REPLACED a broken mirror
8. REPLACED vent covers on roof of RV
9. INSTALLED 400W power inverter for using higher-voltage electronics
10. REPAINTED exterior, changing the color scheme to red, white, and blue stripes
11. INSTALLED a wide-range television antenna, so we’ll never have to miss any Fear Factor
12. REPLACED door catches above storage doors
13. REBUILT the automatic entry steps
14. In bathroom drawer we FOUND a denture case containing a used tampon. Go figure that one out.
15. REMOVED the accumulation of bug carcasses
16. REBUILT the main door
17. CUT out wall panel on interior right side and REPLACED with fresh materials
18. REPAINTED the air filter casing
19. REPLACED LED exterior lights
20. AFFIXED reflective American flag stickers
21.REPLACED broken ceiling vent
22. INSTALLED a battery operated smoke detector
23. INSTALLED new thermostat
24. REPLACED vent filters
25. REPLACED extinguished indicator lights in the dash
26. REPLACED bedroom cabinet knobs
27. REPLACED driver side power window
28. REPLACED windshield-wiper switch
29. REPLACED main lock
30. REPAIRED broken rear tail light
31. MOUNTED a new 15V solar panel for recharging our battery
32. CONVERTED our V-8 engine to run on vegetable juice
33. PATCHED a hole in bottom of shower tub
34. CHANGED oil in engine and in generator
35. REPLACED awning
I wanted to be a rice krispy treat for Halloween, but it didn’t work out. It rained, I didn’t have enough time, and I didn’t want to wear a stiff, unmanueverable box for a costume anyway.
I was going to wear a box shape over my body covered in rice cereal, with a rectangular piece cut out in the front. Into this hole I was going to insert a foil pan of rice krispy treat. People would be able to eat my costume.
As I had hoped conditions would be better for making the costume, I had already purchased the 4 boxes of rice cereal and 8 bags of marshmallows. If I wasn’t going to be a rice krispy treat, how else could I use these items?
I made a goose. A life-size rice krispy treat goose.
So the goose took the place of a costume for this Halloween.
The same weekend, Josef and I drove to New Jersey as his cousins were throwing a surprise party for their parents’ fortieth wedding anniversary. About 80 friends and relatives convened at the community center to wish them well. There was an extensive buffet of tasty Italian food, appetizers, and desserts. Among the desserts, we added the goose.
Some of the adult party goers stopped to investigate the goose and its composition, but it was mostly the children that noticed her. A group of about twenty young kids gathered around the counter top to look at this duck, no goose?, no duck. They asked what it was and then whether they could eat it. “I want the head!” many exclaimed.
All of us in charge of the goose received a steady stream of requests for particular prized body parts of the giant rice krispy goose. The only reasonable way to resolve this dilemma was a dance contest.
I spoke with the D.J. to have him put on some dancin’ songs, and then we gathered the kids to tell them of the contest and its stakes. They rushed back out to the dance floor and got moving- keeping their eyes on us to make sure we saw them. The older ones were particularly seasoned with twists and twirls and preferred to dance in groups. Some of the younger ones were more oblivious but still danced intently. A little boy in a suit kept good rhythm and scooted himself on the floor. To our surprise, a few of the girls exhibited the skillful move called a ‘can opener,’ propping themselves with their hands on the ground, extending one leg out, and then spinning it fully around in a circle underneath their body.
After watching the children exert themselves through five songs, we cued the DJ to play the final judgment song- “The Chicken Dance.” Everyone got into a circle, including myself, and quacked their hands, flapped their elbow wings, wiggled their chicken butts. It was kinda funny in the beginning, but the song was a little long for my butt wiggling taste. Following the chicken dance, I and the other judges- Josef and his sister- conferred with one another and selected the top dancers. When it was time, the DJ paused the music, gave over the microphone, and Josef read off the six winners, from low to high. The two 3rd place winners each won a goose foot, the 2nd place winners shared the tail, and the top two winners split the head. The winners gratefully claimed their plastic plates topped with rice krispy goose and then the party returned to normal.
FURTHERMORE: For my interest in making atypical Halloween costumes, I have my mother to thank. As a kindergartner, she dressed me up as a table. We went to a costume contest at a nearby amusement park and I won fifty dollars worth of honorable mention. But I was sad I did not win first place, because the first place winner got to be on television.
In college, I wore a series of Halloween outfits. Sophomore year I was “Tangled Up in Blue.” Junior year, throwing an outfit together, I put red tape around my neck and called myself a “redneck.” Senior year, I dressed entirely in black with earbuds and a white iPod to be the iPod silhouette. My first year out of college, last year, I was “Midge the Fridge,” a refrigerator made out of white felt complete with vel-cro magnetic poetry, children’s artwork, a graded spelling test, and food inside the door.
When stopping for gas we met Scott Augusto and the vehicle that helped the Red Sox to become World Champions. This video features the second car of the two that he has thoroughly outfitted with Red Sox and Patriots paraphernalia and then watched the Red Sox achieve ultimate victory. Instead of a few stickers on the bumper or rear window, Scott covered his entire vehicle, adding even bobble heads, action figures, a miniature Fenway, a Red Sox atomic clock, masks, a snow globe… and more. This is the first Amy-Joe collaboration.