[M.M.X.I.V. 45] Zap!

Perhaps this post was inspired by an improv warmup game that I played yesterday–“Zip Zap Zop!”  You pass either a “Zip,” “Zap,” or “Zop” around the circle in any direction.  But, if you screw up, your call becomes “Mip,” “Map,” or “Mop.”

That’s not the real reason that I posted this post.  I’m more interested in talking about static electricity and big sparks due to electrical currents.

A few weeks ago, my sleep was disturbed in the early morning by a bunch of flashing outside of my window.  I was afraid that something was seriously wrong, but no!  It was just sparks flying from the third rail of the CTA Purple Line, and with the ice that was on the tracks, I guess I can see how that happened.  However, that was the first time that sparks from the track were bright enough to disrupt my sleep.

I find it fascinating when waiting for a train on the CTA at Howard, watching the southbound trains while waiting for a northbound train.  During the winter, and especially during the night, it is easy to see when sparks fly from the third rail.  It is a fascinating phenomenon, because when the train is fully within my line of sight, sparky nights have the visual effect of a stadium full of flashing cameras.  Of course, I wouldn’t want to get anywhere near that third rail.

Also, I am a magnet for static electricity during the winter.  However, I rarely see the sparks when I touch metal and get zapped.  There is one notable exception.  One of my favorite feelings is the feeling of my blankets and linens after putting them through the dryer–all fuzzy and warm.  Unfortunately, I do not use dryer sheets, which means that they build up an incredible amount of static electricity.

During the night, when getting into bed, sometimes I will feel the static flying around the blankets, and can see the sparks when the lights are off.  This shock doesn’t irritate me, unlike other sorts of static shock.  Is this some sort of weird fetish, perhaps…?


Today is Valentine’s Day.  To me, it is just an ordinary day.  However, I will have two things for Valentine, Nebraska that I wanted to add to this blog:

1) NOAA Weather Radio: “(robotic female voice) At SHY-anne, it was clear. With a TEMPerature of 29. At Vah-Len-Tine, it was partly CLOUDY. With a TEMPerature of 34.”

2) Although my trip up to northern Nebraska in 2008 merely passed through Valentine without stopping there, I might as well add a link to that post.


Today is the forty-fifth day of M.M.X.I.V.  That makes six weeks and three days.


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