Words Fail, as does the Power

The Listening Chair


(to start of project)



Great wind for sailing last weekend. Too bad I couldn’t take advantage of it.

This is what it’s like: You wait all week to get back to work. You plan your steps, lay out your tools, go through the motions, in your mind working through the trouble spots. The day arrives and you wake up early, all spunky and ready to go. You got your coffee, your music, you even fire up the saw and make a couple of good cuts.

Then the power goes out. And stays out. Breakers are fine. You walk around the neighborhood and it’s out everywhere. All over town. There are no words for the noises I made walking back to the house.

Apparently, the wind, so great for sailing, is not so great for winter weakened limbs hanging over tired power lines.

The juice was out all day, which pretty much shot the whole weekend. While waiting for the power to return, there was nothing to do but mow grass and sit outside listening to the birds, who have been raising a real racket lately. It’s like it’s Spring or something.

At least the batteries in the little pocket digital recorder worked (see, er, hear above). Lot’s here: trains, roosters, crows, jays, wood thrush, hermit thrush, doves, house wrens, cardinals, woodpeckers, and a bunch of things I can’t identify. Near the end is something really strange, which gave me a start. No idea what it is, but sounds more Amazon Jungle than Rural Virginia. If you know what it is, leave me a comment – I’d really like to know. Headphones are worth using, if you have them.

Let’s hope the coming weekend is more productive. I have plans to try steam-bending knees for the deck supports, and would prefer not to do it over a campfire.
melonseed skiff, mellonseed skiff, melon seed, mellon seed   

5 Replies to “Words Fail, as does the Power”

    1. Well you are correct, there is a train. It’s about a mile away, but you can still hear it clearly. Kind of nice when it’s in the distance. But that last thing? What the heck?

      Thursday, May 13, 2010 – 04:27 PM

    1. Wow, I think he’s right, John – pretty darn good for a recording played over a cell phone. Awesome. Thanks!

      I found a few more recordings, as their call can vary quite a bit. This one is pretty close:

      While digging for audio, I learned they’re becoming more and more rare. At least one group it trying to get them listed as an Endangered Species:



      Monday, May 17, 2010 – 08:25 PM

  1. So I went strawberry picking last Friday morning and was standing up stretching my back when…I heard a yellow-billed cuckoo call. It struck me as funny that a week ago I would have probably noted the unusual call, but nothing more. Yet hearing the call and being able to identify the species was truly thrilling.

    Monday, May 24, 2010 – 09:43 AM

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