A personal “Black Box” would be helpful

Fitbits tally exercise buffs’ 10,000 daily steps, calories burned, hours of sleep, blood pressure, and pulse rate. Cops wear camcorders in case of ensuing court arguments. Dementia patients with a penchant for wandering off can be outfitted with sneakers that have GPS trackers built into their soles. Even planes, trains and buses are manufactured with black boxes that survive horrific disasters to steer transportation investigators to what went wrong.

Yet no one has designed a wearable “black box” to analyze seniors’ movements and locate the TV remote.

At least twice in the past week alone, I’d have welcomed such a device.

The first time was Tuesday when I got a call at 9:38 a.m. from a guest I was expecting for lunch. She asked for a favour; I was happy to say yes.

She wanted a ride from a tire shop after dropping off her truck which urgently needed repair. She gave me the name of the tire shop.

I had finished baking a pan of buns, but a pan of chocolate chip cookies needed three more minutes in the oven. Then I would be free to leave. I estimated I could arrive at the tire shop in half an hour. If she arrived first, she would wait for me.

Our plan was simple. Foolproof really, if I had paid more attention to the address. Because a family member had worked at the shop on Keith Avenue, that’s where I headed.

In years past I would have written notes as she spoke, but this time I didn’t. Who needed notes for such a simple mission? Little did I realize Terrace has at least four tire shops.

In no time the cookies were cooling on the breadboard, I was out the gate and on my way to town.

Upon arrival at my choice of shop, she wasn’t there yet, nor was there any sign of her truck. The office had no such name on their list of scheduled repair jobs.

I was allowed to use their office phone to call another shop, but they, too, had no such truck on site or booked for work.

About then I was asked to move my truck which was blocking shop traffic; I hadn’t expected a delay. I had wasted 20 minutes.

I couldn’t see any pay phones, and I don’t carry a cell phone. I asked a smoker strolling the parking lot if he had a cell phone I could borrow. He turned out to be as “off the grid” as I am.

Just then the office attendant ran up to tell me the young lady I was waiting for was across town at the tire shop near the ambulance depot.

Today I slipped a pan of buns in the oven, turned on the temperature to 375 degrees… or so I thought. But 40 minutes later the buns were anemic, without a hint of tan. Was my oven broken, refusing to heat? Was I about to pay for an oven repair? Or had I set too low a temperature, perhaps groggy from the time change that morning. Since I had turned off the oven, I had no way of telling what temperature I had used.

I re-set the oven to 375 degrees and placed an independent thermometer beside the pan of buns. In ten minutes the buns had browned nicely. Clearly I had goofed when I chose the original temperature setting. A black box would have confirmed it.

A pencilled address would have sent me to the correct tire shop.

Just Posted

Two Terrace artists receive YVR Art Foundation scholarship

Both recipients will have their artwork showcased at Vancouver Airport

Tahltan reach benefits agreement over Seabridge’s massive KSM gold mine project

$308M agreement provides additional billions for Tahltan jobs, contracts

Researchers to flush Skeena with bright dyes for spill-response study

Kitsumkalum leading effort as rail transport of hazardous materials on the rise

Northwest couples compete at His and Hers golf tournament in Prince Rupert

Kitimat and Smithers couples take home the hardware

Skeena Voices | Designing a strong identity

Kelly Bapty is the province’s first Indigenous female architect from a B.C. nation

Video shows fireworks shot at swan in Alberta

Alberta Fish and Wildlife is investigating the incident in Grande Prairie

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

B.C. teen killed by fallen tree on field trip remembered as hero

13-year-old Tai Caverhill was the first to spot the tree falling and warned his friends

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

Should B.C. get rid of Daylight Saving Time?

The province wants to know, as state governments down south make the move

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Canadians crash out of Women’s World Cup in 0-1 loss to Sweden

Canada missed a chance to tie the game on a penalty shot

Four-year-old boy assaulted at B.C. soccer game

It happened at a weekend tournament in Ashcroft

Two bear cubs saved near Revelstoke after mother hit by car

Conservation officers trapped the cubs and transported them to a wildlife sanctuary

Most Read