Random Musings: Sprinklers update, Sports curse, Postage-paid protest

This weekend I got serious about sorting out my sprinkler system, and I think I’ve finally got it. The Internet came to my rescue yet again. I had spotted a valve inside the house that was either the main water cut-off, or the sprinkler line cut-off, but I didn’t know for sure. It had an odd contraption attached near the valve, so I decided to do some research.

I found a site that sold sprinkler system hardware and poked around looking at the various parts. I didn’t find the part I was looking for, but I did stumble across a plastic cap that looked familiar. I have one of those in my front lawn out near the street. I had assumed it was something to do with the natural gas line, but now I had evidence it might be part of the sprinkler system.

So on Saturday I did some experimenting. The odd valve in my house? I twisted the handle the other way until it stopped. The water in my house turned off! Amazing! I had located the main water cut-off for the house!

Next I went out to examine that odd cap in my front yard. I got the cap off, and there was a valve down at the bottom of the tube. I had a sprinkler key hanging in my garage that fit it perfectly! I turned it 90 degrees the other way, and voila! My sprinklers don’t sprinkle anymore! Ah, the miracles of modern plumbing.

So now all that remains is to see if my system is self-draining, as there is no visible means of blowing out the system, and to check and see if my system is in violation of city code, as there is no blackflow device. That would just be my luck.

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My deepest apologies to any Texas Ranger fans out there. I cursed your team. After my kids got involved with baseball this year, and after having read George Will’s “Men at Work“, I decided I should watch more baseball. After hearing about the exciting Game 6 of the World Series I decided I would watch Game 7 if I could. I caught the last three innings, just in time to see an otherwise-salvageable game move beyond hope for Texas.

I had decided before watching that I would cheer for Texas. Yes, the Cardinals were managed by Tony La Russa, whom I read about in Will’s book, but the Rangers had never won a World Series before. In my mind they were the underdogs, and I always cheer the underdogs. I should have thought it through better and cheered the Cardinals so that Texas could win.

You see, I’m a  curse. Any team I cheer for seems to lose.  Next year I will take donations to ensure I don’t watch your favorite teams. 😉

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I’ve mentioned before that I do share some complaints with the Occupy Wall Street crowd, whether I approve of their tactics or not. So I have to admit that this particular approach is tempting, if for no other reason than I’m sick of the junk mail I get trying to sell me credit cards. It’s inexpensive, doable from the comfort of your home, doesn’t hurt the lower-level minions at the banks, and is much more accurately targeted than the OWS protests themselves tend to be. Will I do it? Probably not. But it’s tempting. Verrrry tempting.