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Heat-Seeking Varmint


When I woke up this morning, it was kind of cold in the front rooms of the house. That is because this rotten beast was plugging up the main heat vent between the kitchen and dining room.

While it’s annoying as hell, I do kind of sympathise with the little brute. When I was a kid, my folks heated their house with a woodburning stove, so there were select places in the house that were pleasant to occupy during the winter. Within a 10′ radius of the big stove in the basement was choice. The corner between the chimney and the kitchen wall in the living room upstairs was nice, too, because you had all the south light from the row of old schoolhouse windows that formed the main feature of our front room, plus you had the nice, warm chimney to lean up against. That was one of my principal wintertime reading hangout spots when I was a kid. To this day, whenever I re-read The Wind In The Willows or The Secret Garden, I lament the lack of a warm chimney to lean against.

My other little hideout was on top of the deep-freezer in the basement. If I curled my toes over the lid, I’d catch a draft of warm air coming up off the compressor, and if Mom was running a load of laundry, I could point the dryer vent hose at myself and bask in the warm, damp, Downy-scented dryer exhaust.

So yes, I completely understand Griswald’s impulse to plug up the furnace register, but I absolutely do not support it. He’s not the only creature in the house who likes to have warm feet!

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