As it turns out, so they said, it was the valve caps that they put on. They were evidently pushing down on the valves expelling the air. Of course, my thought was, "I sure as hell hope the ones you're putting on my tires aren't going to do that." What a stupid "feature."
My installation was completed well within the 30-minute guaranteed time, which I'm somewhat ambivalent about from an advertising perspective. On the one hand, it's nice to know that they'll be done quickly. On the other hand, if it's been 28 minutes, and they're having trouble finishing, I'm not wanting them to carelessly finish up to keep from having to deduct the $20 refund part of the guarantee.
Anyhow, I was pleased to find that they had inflated my spare, which seemed a little low to me while it was on, and that they had replaced the spare down in its well in the trunk, and put the jack and crank back where it belonged. Nice touch.
So these tires have a tread life guarantee of 80,000 miles, which means they're guaranteed until I have 110,000 miles on the car. That's a long time. I have to keep up with the rotations every 6,000 miles, which are free, but I'm pretty good with that kind of thing in my structured, Palm-Piloted life. Too bad for them.
We got to the BTI center at just after 7, and waited for Mary and Kelly to arrive. They were taking the bus or trolley from Cafe Luna. When they finally arrived, Mary was smoking a cigarette, and walking, well, like a "floozy." Both (the butt, and well, the butt) seemed so out of character for her (at least out of the character I know of her), that I went back and forth as she was walking toward the building from the road, saying, "Yeah, that's her; oh no, that's not her."
The opera was quite good. I'm not sure if it was because:
- it was Puccini, or
- the mind map helped it out, or
- four people died, or
- the translation captions were high quality.
I do have to say that, in the end (warning spoiler ahead!), it was quite sophomoric to see Tosca "hurl herself to her death" by, while facing the audience at the edge of the castle, taking a step backward and disappearing -- feet first. She just stepped back and went straight down -- if she'd've held her nose, and we'd've heard a big splash, I would have sworn she'd jumped, feet first, into the deep end of a pool instead. I'm thinking a big old mattress on the stage behind the castle and her falling face first into it would have been a little more effective.
As I've mentioned, the captions were of high quality. I only found two errors, and they were both nits -- an extra space between words. One of them was a sentence that began with "For I..." which was actually "For I..." The only other caption-related incident was in the final act, very near the end of the performance, really, when there was a sudden font change. It got bigger, and the first screen had the bottoms of the letters of the words on the second row hanging off the screen, and projecting onto the curtain behind it.
When the next screen came up, they had moved it up. From our experience at Turandot last year, I half expected a cursor to come up, swipe the words, a right-click, and then select "Decrease text size" or something.
This is the drama of Turandot's caption fiasco:
We did our usual scrutiny of the subtitles, and found no less than 7 typos. One was "died" for "dried," one was "live" for "life," "lover" for "love," and a couple of others, the biggest being right at the climax of the opera, where the diva gets kissed for the first time in her life, and she exclaims, "What have you done!?!" Unfortunately, the subtitle said, "What have you didn't?" People in the audience actually chuckled.
Also, toward the end of the first act, the subtitles just switched over to what looked like a PowerPoint screen. You could tell they were having trouble getting it back up. I was whispering to Mary, "Uh-oh, APARs are up 20%..." Then one of those Microsoft Windows error boxes with the yellow triangle with the exclamation point came up, then it went blank, and then the little pointer cursor was moving around on a black background.
It was all quite distracting, as the opera went on, and for about 5-7 minutes the mostly English-speaking audience, of course, had no idea what the beautiful sounds coming out of the singers' mouths meant.
I started thinking, "So when they do get this thing rebooted, I hope they have someone up there who knows Italian who can figure out where they currently are and get that thing back in sync. Not that most of us would know if it was in sync or not.
Overall, a fun night. Once home, Robert and I did a crossword puzzle from The Independent.