Thursday, October 22, 2009

True stories from "under the hood"

I imagine some people think my previous post about the Prevention of Cruelty to Hitching Animals was a joke.  But no!  This is a real problem.  Be serious.

This "alert" speaks for itself.  Notice was posted at the visitor center at the Bristlecone Pine Forest, in the White Mts. of Nevada.

We're not going to do any stories about dogs in cars, fun as that is--way too common.  But what about chimps in cars?  That's a little more unusual...

Here's a story from "This American Life," probably the best radio show on the airwaves:  A chimpanzee and his trainer, who has a business of showing the chimp at parties, are driving in a thunderstorm. The chimp becomes very afraid of the lightning. When lightning strikes nearby, the chimp freaks out, tosses the man into the back seat, and starts driving. The chimp does a good job of driving for a while, but then has an accident. When the police show up, the man blames chimp, saying:  "He was driving,  It wasn't my fault." Obviously, the cops don't buy this explanation.

Stephanie Rinza, who lives in New York City, rescued a kitten that was stranded in the trunk of a drunk driver's car.

I used to be a pilot of small planes.  One summer, we flew to a rustic island in Lake Michigan to go camping.  On returning to our Cessna 172 a few days later, I noticed a robin flying away from the plane.  We were anxious to get the plane loaded and go home, but suddenly I remember reading somewhere in my training that you should check the engine compartment for bird's nests.  But to do that, I needed to remove the engine cover, which required a screw driver.  I was able to locate one--on my Swiss army knife.  Sure enough, there was a new robin's nest inside, with lots of flamable grass.  If I hadn't removed it, the engine could have caught fire.  Or we would have had to make an emergency landing, to see what the smoke was about.

1 comment:


    Greetings! Unfortunately, most dog walkers discover a danger, only sadly, when victimized. And so I wanted to inform you of And so you are aware, I confer with Con Edison's Stray Voltage and Public Affairs Units and contribute to Wet Nose Guide and New York Dog Chat. Thank you.

    WHY URBAN METAL ISN'T PRECIOUS- Blair Sorrel, Founder,

    Of course, you want a worry-free walk year-round, so adopt this simple strategy:


    Take just a few seconds to survey the immediate surroundings and make your trajectory toward a non-conductive surface, ie., plastic, wood, cardboard, rather than risking any metal or electrical fixture. The lowly, free-standing garbage bag, is you and your dog's best friend, most of the time, unless it's snowed and salted. Then you might contemplate indoor products. Consider the safer, hardware-free RopeNGo leash and harness to help shield against a possible zapping and for greater peace of mind.


    Your pooch's sex is irrelevant. True, the most gruesome scenario is that of a male dog electrocuted by its own urine. Our poster girl sidled a hydrant and limped for five days.Intuit your dog's cues, if resistant to an area, choose an alternative route. Elude potentially live work areas or carry your canine, if necessary. Opt for indoor products such as The Pet Loo, Hammacher Schlemmer's Indoor Restroom, or Wee-Wee Pads, if external conditions are ominous. Dog booties can leak and make your pooch even more vulnerable.


    Any of these fixtures might be dangerous, so again, choose non-conductive where and when possible. (link to home page fixtures listed below and/or the visuals page):

    View All StreetZaps' Home Page & Safety Images

    – Street & Traffic Lights can leak if damaged internally, even if the compartment is fully closed and the light is not illuminated

    – While wooden blocks anchor Scaffolding or Sidewalk Sheds, be aware that sloppy wiring by a contractor and/or the use of lighting equipment which is NOT WATER-PROOFED or even suitable for outdoor usage, may still shock a passerby.

    – ATM Vestibules

    – Decorative Lighting

    – Dog Booties may increase
    the risk of a shock

    - Electrical Boxes

    – Fire Hydrants

    – Fire Police Call Boxes

    – Manhole Covers

    – Muni Meters

    – Phone Booths

    – Service Boxes

    – Street Light Boxes

    – Traffic Boxes

    – Work Areas

    After all, why chance it when there's a choice?


    Tampered equipment can become pernicious so please map (Report Form) damaged fixtures and known hot spots to admonish other pedestrians and alert the utility and transportation department.


Comments are welcome.