Out and About – Week of December 21st

I’ve always enjoyed watching movies, both at home and in a movie theater. Lately, the movie watching has been done at home, thanks to the Covid pandemic. Watching a movie at home just isn’t the same, because of all the commercial breaks and the fact that some scenes have been edited out of the movie. Going to a theater isn’t all that expensive as long as you by-pass the concession stand. This is extremely difficult for me, because it’s difficult to watch a movie without a bucket of popcorn and a container of pop.

Whenever I go to a movie theater, I always stick around to see the credits at the end. It amazes me how many people are involved in the making of a movie. I’m not talking about the stars, co-stars, makeup artists, executive producers, producers and directors. You also have a “gaffer”, “best boy”, and many others. We’ve all seen the gaffers and best boys listed, but how many of you know what these people do. Here are some job descriptions for those folks working behind the scenes:

Gaffer – Chief Electrician
Key Grip – Responsible for constructing or dismantling sets and also for laying the tracks upon which the cameras run.
Best Boy – Assistant to the gaffer and the key grip. “Get me a coffee and a danish.”
We’ve been pretty lucky so far this year when it comes to the accumulation of snow and ice. As of this writing, we haven’t had any real snow fall in this part of the state. The upper peninsula is another story. I’m sure Mother Nature will not forget us here in St. Joe County. Before long we’ll all be out clearing our driveways and sidewalks. The highway departments will be out plowing and salting the roads, so that hopefully we won’t end up in a ditch out in the boonies. The brave ones will continue to take I-94 just so they’ll end up on the six o’clock news.

I spent two years living in Colorado. They use sand and ashes on the roads rather than salt, which is why the cars and trucks with Colorado license plates have very little if any rust on them. If you’re interested, as I was, about how salt melts the ice, please check the next paragraph.

Each winter, tons of rock salt are spread on the sidewalks and the roads throughout the world. It seems that salt has the ability to melt solid ice on a frigid day. No chemical reaction between the salt and ice takes place. It’s more of a physical reaction.

Ice usually has a very thin layer of water on top of it. When salt is spread on the ice, some of it dissolves into this thin layer of water, which forms a thin layer of salt water, which has a lower freezing point than fresh water. As the salt goes from its solid state into solution, a little heat is released, which melts another thin layer of ice, allowing more salt to dissolve and create more saltwater. This saltwater loves the under body of your car and truck.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve for some of us. Some will be taking packages to the post office and will get very upset when they are told that the gifts will not arrive in time for Christmas. These individuals will more than likely receive some coal in their Christmas stocking.

I would like to wish each and every one of you a joyous Merry Christmas and a blessed holiday season. I wish all you you this, but most of all I wish you PEACE!

See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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