I manage projects all the time. Some go according to plan; others slip a little here and there and still others go off the rails. My plan for today’s blog post was a bit of a project. I was going to end up at the bar with my buddy and Cheryl. I’ve been over there, conducting research, and I had a couple of good ideas.
Then England got in the way.
Not England the country, at least not the whole country, but the small part where Ellen lives. I could just say that Ellen got in the way, but I don’t want to imply that Ellen is large enough to derail a project, even one of an unquantifiable size like a blog post. I have a history with women and size and saying and doing stupid things.
Like when I parked 6 feet away from the Forsythia and told my wife: “I wanted to give you enough room to get in without brushing up against the bushes.”
Anyway, Ellen happened and I wrote a comment about the way they name storms in the US – her post was about Storm Doris – She also mentioned the British expression “leaves on the line” as an excuse for the train being late. I was going to comment on that, but I wanted to check with my friend David in England who knows a trainload of stuff about trains. I also wanted to talk about the Mets (hang on), but I didn’t want my comment to be a blog post within Ellen’s blog post. Ellen does quite well on her own.
Then it happened.
I saw the #SoCS prompt and the voices started murmuring about projects and trains and leaves and storms and Doris Day and Alfred Hitchcock and Storm Alfred and “please, please, puuuuuh-leeeeeeze let us out when you write this blog post” and here we are. Off the rails, as it were. Let me try to explain.
It’s ALL Ellen’s fault. 100%.
Well, Ellen and John Evans. John gave a detailed explanation about how leaves on the line – the rail line – make it hard for trains to stop and how that messes up the schedules. You should go read Ellen’s post to get more information on that. I went to my friend David, whose unusually brief explanation: “wheels slip on compacted leaves. Classic excuse in the autumn (sorry Fall)” seems to confirm that theory and illustrate yet another difference between English and English. ,
I’m not buying it.
If there’s any place on earth where wet leaves in the fall (Autumn) would mess up a train schedule, it would be Vermont. Yet AMTRAK’s Vermonter shuttles thousands of people from as far away as Washington, DC, up into Vermont just to look at the leaves. The Vermonter always runs on time…unless it’s late.
As for Doris Day, Ellen mentioned throwing something at her that “would leave a stain” and I thought that was pretty funny. Doris Day could be annoying in movies, because you always knew she was going to sing. She had a good voice, but I remember her singing “Que sera, sera” in Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Man Who Knew Too Much,” and it was annoying. People were about to be shot, and she starts singing. I mean, would you want your super-power to be the ability to sing? I would have rather seen laser beams projecting out of her eyeballs.
Ellen was writing about how the British Met is now naming storms. She got off-track because, apparently, there are two Mets in England and one is a police force that typically doesn’t name storms. Of course, Ellen used to live in New York, so two Mets shouldn’t be a problem for her. New Yorkers have The Met (the museum that’s in financial trouble) and The Met (the opera that’s in financial trouble) and The Mets, the baseball-team-poorly-managed-project that’s been underway since 1962 but that hardly anybody ever talks about. If you said ‘the Mets’ in New York, people would probably think “oh, he’s talking about the museum and the opera, and how they’re both in financial trouble.”
I commented to Ellen that I read that we name storms in the US to get people to pay attention to the warnings.
“Apparently, if we say ‘a big storm is coming, with much rain and damaging winds’ people think ‘meh’ and go about their business. But, if we say ‘Storm Doris is coming’ people line up in droves to buy bread and milk.”
I think that’s the first time I’ve quoted myself.
Back in 2011. some weatherman dubbed the late October snow storm that plunged us into darkness for 10 days, Storm Alfred. That wasn’t an official name. That storm never had an official name. The guy just probably hated that part of the movie where Doris Day started singing, but couldn’t remember the name of the male lead, but remembered that it was an Alfred Hitchcock movie. It’s better that way. The male lead was Jimmy Stewart, and who would go into a panic bread and milk buying spree over Storm Jimmy?
This post has been part of Linda G, Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday project:
Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “project.” Use it as a verb, a noun, or both. Have fun!