Jul 30, 2009

Town Passes Resolution Condemning France After Metric System Snafu Causes Major Town 'Brouhaha'

As if they needed another reason, the Town of Lamont declared that they officially hate one of the major countries in Europe because, many decades ago, they created an integrated system of unit measurement (that cleverly meshed length, weight, temperature and volume in a way that only a country that loves socialism and lays around all day long drinking wine and eating stinky cheese could ever do!) that is different from the one used in America and that is also not used by every country with a lick of sense in the whole doggone world! The issue arose after a simple comparison was made between the amount of water billed out to customers and the electronic reading at the pump itself. "Well, there was a pretty big difference between what we were billing for and the total water we assumed was being pumped from the ground - and being that this is the State of Washington, a whole lot of people got very excited about it" said the Mayor who just recently figured out that there were actually 16 ounces in a pound and not just 12. "We had every local 'Chicken Little' and hand wringing ninny within a 5 mile radius screaming to bring in a plumber and dig until we found the leak. The hysteria was really quite overwhelming" he said. "So, as is my nature, I did the only thing I could think to do - call Century West Engineering and pathetically plead (okay, it was much more like full-blown begging last seen when 'walking the plank' was all the rage in some circles) for some sort of miraculous delivery from a vexing problem that could bankrupt the town while the only proposed solution (from the 'Chicken Littles') could still not solve the actual riddle of the 'missing water'!!" he said contritely. "So, when all hope is gone, we know we can call Century West and things just seem to work out right! It happens all the time." he said.

"Well, as it turned out, somehow the actual computerized output display was capturing 'liters' (whatever they are!) and not gallons - a perfectly fine measurement unit that made this country great!" said an unnamed official loosely associated with the Town's water delivery system. "Someone must have been up there pushing buttons like a drunken madman or deranged 3-year-old on a sugar high or something and got the thing on the dadburn metric system or some such nonsense! And as the wicked banshee of Fate would have it, the symbol for the 'liter' (or as the stupid French spell it - 'litre') is the lower case 'L' - which looks amazingly like the number 'one' (#1) - so this whole time we have been carrying the actual water delivery amount to a level of precision that is not only incorrect (example 10.9 versus 10.91) and missed out on the fact that we were actually measuring liters and not gallons - and as any snail-eating, beret-wearing 'Frenchman' will tell you (if he is not too busy retreating from the Germans at the time!)- there are 4.54609 liters in the proven, trusted, tried-and-true, All-American gallon - so we thought we were pumping a lot more water than we actually were."

For his part, the (heroic?) Mayor is still frantically thrashing around in search of a 'saboteur' ('This had to be an inside job - someone I once trusted with the blind faith of the innocent has betrayed me! - I can just feel it!' he said with staggering levels of largely justified although painful-to-watch paranoia - although the list of people with a key to the pump house is actually quite small - given that there are in fact only 2 keys)- (Plus, the word 'saboteur' is of French origin too, which makes the task all the more ironic), but as of this writing no suitable culprit has been located. Century West, for their part, sent out a technician who made the adjustment to the display screen (and he had grace enough not to comment on the embarrassing - to say nothing of the less-than-worldly (dare we say ignorant?) origins of the problem!) and now everything is hunky-dory, happy-ever-after and all of that - and the Town did not bankrupt itself by digging dry holes all over the place in the fine tradition of Don Quixote with his windmills (Don Quixote was a Spaniard, by the way, and not a Frenchman - which somehow makes this literary reference even more satisfying!) and the Town of Lamont lives to fight another day in spite of themselves! Thanks Century West!


Anonymous said...

Wow--I never would have thought that Lamont would choose France to hate! I was thinking more in the lines of Germany, where the weiner dog comes from....

Anonymous said...

Lamont's trouble with their water interesting to say the least. Did it ever make national news? I do, however, feel the need to point out that the program designer who designed what was to be displayed on the computerized output display (monitor???) was the true culprit: the abbreviation for liter is not a lowercase L, but an uppercase L, precisely because the letter l does look much like the number 1.