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Exploding Table! Gretchen’s Match; Dictionary Geek; Turtle Camo; A Blythe Egret

One night just before leaving on our summer tour, we were having dinner on the lanai. It was a delightful evening, and we were enjoying our second bite of dinner when ka-boom! Our 48 inch diameter glass patio table top exploded into a zillion pieces, throwing glass shards into our laps and onto our feet (thankfully, Rudy and Gretchen were not in their usual places under the table). 

As it turned out, our only injuries were to my feet where glass shards nicked me. After researching the problem on line, it seems that tempered glass production is not an exact science; if it’s not done perfectly, the chemical bonds of the glass can come apart in a millisecond, usually a few years after production (ours was about 4 years old). There have been several thousand reports of exploding glass table tops, so please be careful. I replaced that glass table top with a sheet of ½ inch plywood cut into a circle and varnished. It was an easy job and it’s almost impossible to break (unless I sit on it).

Our Gretchen is normally a pretty shy little dog, except when she sees another black dog, particularly if it’s larger than she is. Then she becomes “Ten Pounds of Fighting Fury”.  I think she may have met her match in the back of this golf cart… those handsome shepherds must go around 125 lbs each. And these are NOT “shrinking violets”. I think they were considering having me for lunch!  

Suzanne considers me a bit of a geek because I read the dictionary as a kid and still look for words I don’t know (yes, there are quite a few). But since we don’t watch TV, there’s time every day to close my eyes and pick out a word at random to learn, and if I already know the one I’ve picked, then I pick another. Our Word of the Day is “muscovado”, “noun, a raw or unrefined sugar made by evaporating the molasses from sugar-cane juice; early 17th C. From Portuguese mascabado ‘made badly’, referring to the quality of refinement”. This is one of those synchronicities that Suzanne often refers to; I haven’t seen, heard, or used the word “molasses” for decades, but just used it in a recipe yesterday… how strange is that? By the way, My Lovely Wife bought the cherry stand for my big dictionary as an “I Love You” gift (no special occasion) last year. 

Suzanne, being a bit younger than I, also has better peepers than Your Correspondent. She picked out this camouflaged turtle the other day in a pile of leaves that I had just walked by. 

Okay, I know that an English teacher or librarian somewhere is going to look at the title of today’s blog and jump out of her chair shouting “Ty misspelled ‘blithe’”, an adjective which means “cheerful and carefree”. Well, nah-nah-nah-nah-nah, I was referring to the snowy egret which was walking across our neighbors’ (the Blythes) front lawn! The snowy egret (Egretta thula) in question may indeed be cheerful and carefree, but at the moment he was captured “on film”, I suspect he was looking for a green frog breakfast. 

In closing, I have to relate a story told to us by Robert from Miami; he was driving on I-95 and a woman in another car started moving over into his lane. He moved left to avoid a collision, and the woman continued into his new lane as well. He blew his horn to attract her attention, and when the two cars came even with one another, the woman held out her cell phone, showing it to Robert, and shaking it, as if to say, “Can’t you see that I’m on the phone?” 


  • Jennifer
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:04 am

    Wow, what an experience with the table. Such a
    good thing Rudy and Gretchen were safe.

    Just love the turtle and the Egrett. That turtle has such a pretty shell and they are so fun to watch!

    Your Cherry stand looks very pretty….
    Jen C.

  • Laura
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 1:04 am

    I just had to share that OUR patio glass-topped table exploded about a month or so ago! It is on our front lanai and one night, it just broke into a million pieces. Thanks for giving the explanation; we just couldn't figure out HOW it could have happened. We, also, will not be replacing it with glass. 🙁

  • Ty and Suzanne Giesemann
    Posted October 12, 2012 at 2:08 am

    Laura, Sorry to hear about your table also exploding. I'm glad that you weren't right there. We were so shocked that we just sat there for a couple of minutes, trying to figure out what had just happened. Very scary…



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