Aside

Vermin (Vernon) Supreme Meets the Press

Back in the prehistoric days of night-time television, when Johnny Carson reined over all, he often invoked what he called “the rule of three.”  He’d be telling jokes on a given subject, the first joke…a laugh, the second joke…a laugh, the third joke…a weak response, maybe even sometimes groans or boos.  He’d look over at Ed McMahon and say, “Rule of three?”  And Ed would smile and nod.

Well, at risk of falling prey to Johnny’s Rule of Three, I’m going back to the Vermin Supreme “well” one more time.  After reading my earlier posts on Mr. Supreme, my cousin Bill sent me an email and attached a YouTube video of Mr. Supreme at a press conference.  In spite of my earlier description of Mr. Supreme’s platform positions, this video will show you the true man.  It’s hard to tell how sincere he is, but I’m taken by the thought that “wacky” as he is, he might be the only honest candidate out there.   Who else would say that “A vote for me is a vote thrown away.”  Click here to view the video.  After viewing click your browser’s back button to return to this gripping post.

Thanks for sending that, Bill.   I should mention that there was an unexpected outcome of having downloaded this video.  You’ll recall that the Pony had thrown his support behind Vermin based on his mandate of a pony for every American.  Well, when the Pony found out that Vermin was talking about ponies (with a small p), he abruptly pulled his endorsement.  The Pony has never like the pooping version of himself, thinks they’re crude, smelly and unpredictable.  I don’t know Pony…sounds a lot like you to me!

Moving on to tractor news, and there’s a lot.  Remember last time I poured stuff into the Pony, the coolant and the gas.  Both seemed to reject the concept of inhabiting the Pony’s engine, so attempted to exit at any and all ports that they could.  Well, after completing the head bolt sealing job, buying new spark plugs, and then retorquing everything back down, it was time for a test.  You can’t believe how nervous I was, but I refilled the radiator with water, stood back and waited, and waited and waited.  This was one of the few tests one can try where an answer of “zero” is good.  But guess what, zero water came out anywhere, and it hasn’t leaked in the few days since.  Gene and I even turned the engine over to see if, now under compression, water might be forced out somewhere, but again…zero.  It took me a full 24 hours to come to grips with the fact that the water problem was behind us and we could move on.  I do have one reservation, we conducted the water test after Gene had turned that garden fountain off that’s just outside the garage wall.  My concern had been that the trickling water made the Pony want to take a leak.  Gene offered to turn it back on, but I said, no, let’s not push our luck.

Now just a minute, did you catch where in that last paragraph I said “we turned the engine over?”  I neglected to tell you about the results of another test conducted in the days prior to the water test.  Gene and I  thought we’d see if the Pony could hold some oil.  I poured in three quarts of 30 weight oil, and it seemed to be staying put.  Now, I don’t want you to get too excited, or too disappointed either, so I need to explain what you are going to see in the video below.  Gene rigged up an ignition switch, and we’ve got all the wiring done that’s necessary to start the engine.  Before we go for an engine start though, we needed to put oil in the crankcase and work some of that around on crucial engine parts.  We accomplished that by testing the starter without spark plugs in the engine.  Of course, at this time we had no gas in the tank either.  So what you will see here is simply a successful test of the starter and the engine turning over.  The opera music in the background is courtesy of WCPE, The Classical Music Station, and the opera is “Norma” by Bellini on “Live From the Met.”  After you’ve viewed the video, click on your browser’s “Back” button to return to this post.  Click Here 

You’ll note an increase in the C.O.M.  In an effort to address one of the gas leakage issues, I spent $65 on a new sediment bowl (fuel filter).  As nice as I was able to make the old one look, looks ain’t everything, and it leaked.  Yesterday I attached the bowl to the gas tank and installed the fuel line from the bowl to the carb.

Also in the works…Gene is riding me pretty hard to get a few other items attended to.  He’d like to get the Pony’s dashboard refurbished and rewired for the engine start.  So he’s got me working on the aesthetic side of cleaning, sanding and painting the dash.  And we’ve both been working on refurbishing the section of the tractor chassis that extends back to the dash.  Can you believe this flurry of activity?  I’m tempted to say we’re getting close to an engine start.  I’m not going to though, because I’ve been wrong so many times before.  I was looking at the video I did for an earlier post where I showed-off the engine in it’s virtually complete state.  Toward the end of the video I am heard to say, “We’re getting pretty dang close to an engine start,” the date of that video, August, 2011! 

For those of you who were patient enough to read through all this tractor news, I’ve got one more item to cover of a, believe it or not, quasi-tractor-political nature.  We’ve got the ever astute, tuned-in, politically savvy, and Pony-crazed Princess to thank for this one.  Because she uses Google to access the blog, and she uses the word “idiotic” to search on, you can imagine that a few other “interesting” things show up as well.  Recently she found the following item:  “(Rick) Perry Points to Idiotic U.S. Rule That Doesn’t Exist.”  In an effort to convince folks that government regulation had “run amok,” Governor Perry told listeners that a U.S. regulation had been proposed that would require a farmer driving his tractor from one side of the road to the other to have a “commercial” drivers license.  For a time this had the Pony in Perry’s court, as the Pony believes in unregulated “freedom for tractors.”  Well, turns out that U.S. regulators had stepped in even prior to Perry’s comments and told the State of Illinois that it would not be allowed to impose such a regulation.  

First it was “free Ponies” from Vermin, then it was “freedom for Ponies” from Rick.  The sad truth, like so many of us, the Pony is disenchanted. 

Saw a bumper sticker this week, “I’d Rather be Driving My Tractor.”  You can say that again!  Thanks for reading.

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