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05/24/19: Well, the old TV is finally gone. You may remember from this post about how our old Sony TV fell apart when we moved it to replace it with a flat-screen. I always vowed that I would not carry that thing out of the apartment, so after checking around, I called the 1-800-GotJunk people. I explained the situation and they said that they didn't care what condition the TV was in, that they would take it. I then spoke to the guy upstairs who helped me move the Sony in the first place, and he said that he had an old TV and monitor, so he would add it to the load and share the cost.
     So this evening, two guys showed up with a truck to haul our stuff away. They explained their price structure, as well as the extra fees for taking anything with a CRT. They gave me the option of cancelling if I thought the price was too high, but I was committed, even though it wound up being more than I had planned to spend. We signed the papers, and I held the door for them as they carried it out.
     When I was growing up, Dad always had a bunch of old appliances in the basement, in his work area that we referred to as Dad's dziura, which is Polish for "hole." He taught us early that we don't want to mess around with old TVs because of the picture tube. He said that the vacuum in the CRT would cause it to explode if it broke, sending shards of phosphor-covered glass everywhere. He even showed me once that to dispose of a TV safely, one should open the back, remove the coil from the back of the CRT, and snap off the tip of the glass tube. That would relieve the vacuum and make it safe to put in the alley for the garbage men to take. He even did it once to demonstrate. He used a pair of pliers to snap the glass tip off, and there was a loud whooshing sound as air rushed in to fill the vacuum. He then showed the round spot in the middle of the screen that had no phosphor on it, and he said that's how you can tell the vacuum was gone.
     This lesson was going through my mind as the two guys lifted the furniture dolly that the TV was sitting on and carried it out to the truck. I thought maybe I should say something, but I figured these guys were professionals and might not like anyone telling them how to do their job. I followed them down the sidewalk, picking up the plastic shards that the TV was still shedding, and watched as they decided how to get the TV into the truck. They braced themselves, hoisted the dolly up, and just as it was at the level of the tailgate of the truck, the TV tipped forward and fell off the dolly, face down on the street! They jumped back, and I jumped further, expecting an explosion. But nothing happened. There was some nervous chuckling, and they just picked it up and tossed it in the truck.
     Wikipedia says that "modern cathode-ray tubes used in televisions and computer displays have epoxy-bonded face-plates or other measures to prevent shattering." I'm guessing that's what saved us, but after the way the shell shattered when we tried to move it after all the years of use, I really didn't expect the tube to survive that drop.

05/19/19: I see a lot of odd things while I'm driving, but I can't always get my phone out to take a picture. Today, I did. I saw this dog butt on the road ahead of me when I was going to pick up some dinner at one of our local eateries. I actually went past the restaurant so I could get a snapshot of this odd sight, and so that I might figure out just what I was seeing. If you click on the picture, you'll see what I saw as the driver turned off the road I was on. I think it was some kind of a bulldog trailer, or maybe a big barbecue grill. Weird.

05/05/19: This won't mean much to most people, but it made me laugh so I had to take a picture. We were going to the LaGrange Theater to see the Shazam! movie that came out recently. The movie was great, but it also sticks in my craw a bit, because I (and many older comics fans) know the main character as Captain Marvel. That's the name that was used in the '40s when the character was first introduced, and that's the character that my Dad told us about when we first started reading comics and he described comics he liked when he was a kid. Unfortunately, Marvel Comics was able to usurp the name back in the '60s, so when DC brought back the character after a long hiatus, they couldn't use that name as a title of a comic. They called the new comic book Shazam! after the magic word Billy Batson uses to transform into his super-powered alter ego, and apparently now they've completely done away with the Captain Marvel name, calling the character Shazam, even though that means that he can't even say his own name!
     But I digress. This year, DC finally got around to finishing the long-promised Shazam! movie, but they scheduled it for release around the same time as Marvel released its own Captain Marvel film. I haven't seen that one, nor do I have any interest, but I thought it was funny that the LaGrange theater was showing both Captain Marvel movies at the same time!

05/01/19: I had to update the program on multiple computers today, so I set them all up in a conference room. For some reason, I felt like Keith Emerson surrounded by his keyboards

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