This has got to be embarrassing. Heidemarie M. Stefanyshyn-Piper, one of the intrepid space plumbers, and certainly the American astronaut with the most syllables in her name (God only knows what the M stands for), was on a spacewalk, greasing some joints on the space station, when she discovered that a grease gun "erupted inside its tote bag" (from this morning's Times). While she was cleaning it, the rest of her tool kit "floated irretrievably into space." Poor Heidemarie M. Stefanyshyn-Piper! I know just how she feels. In two separate incidents, I've had a box of Junior Mints explode inside my purse at the movies and gum up my hairbrush something awful, and watched a guidebook slide off my lap into the Venetian Lagoon.
Here on Earth, we've had a cold snap in the Northern Hemisphere, and the astronaut's grease job reminds me that I have to get the Eclair winterized. My Car & Driver magazine from the AAA (not to be confused with AA, of which I am not a member) says I need to check the coolant, make sure the tires have enough tread, and have a look at the battery. Also, I must not forget to pay my insurance premium, due December 9th. I'm sure they are counting on me to be too lazy to do any research into a cheaper policy. Maybe I'll surprise them.