Martin’s 2014 Christmas Poem

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

With apologies to Edgar Allan Poe

Once upon a midnight dreary,     while I pondered, weak and weary, Many unpaid bills and letters     from my local big-box store — While I nodded, nearly napping,     suddenly there came a tapping, As of someone gently rapping,     rapping at my office door. “’Tis some visitor,” I muttered,     “tapping at my office door —         Only this and nothing more.”

Casey Makes a Bet

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

(With apologies to Ernest Lawrence Thayer) Bob Casey's business worries made him grumble, whine, and moan; His solar thermal enterprise was dropping like a stone. While certain clients wanted water heated by the sun, The calls and jobs were rare these days, which wasn’t very fun. The contractor regretted his decision long ago To be a solar plumber; now his life was full of woe.

It’s Time to Admit I’ve Been Wrong About Many Things

Posted on April 28,2015 by CarlSeville in April 1

Posted April 1, 2013 With the arrival of spring and new plant growth springing up all around, I’ve begun to reflect on my several years of writing this blog post, and I have come to the conclusion that far too often I have been overly critical and close-minded about many things. In addition, I have championed some theories and causes that contradicted many long-standing traditions in design, construction, and renovation. And it’s time to say I’m sorry.

The Energy Grinch

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

With apologies to Dr. Seuss

The Third Annual Christmas Parody

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

Act 1, scene 1. An empty lot near Scotland Drive.

Thunder and lightning. Enter three sisters, all RESNET-certified. First rater: When shall we three meet again, In thunder, lightning, or in rain? Second rater: When the drywall work is done, When the zoning battle’s won.

Christmas Carols from the Energy Nerd

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

UPDATED December 23, 2010: Click on the mp3 link above to listen to a recorded version of "The Blower Door Man Is Coming to Town." Many thanks to Greg Cutler and Peter Troast of The Energy Circle for recording one of this year's carols.

Rudolph the Sloppy Builder

You know all about Norm Abram And that old builder named Bob But do you recall The most infamous builder of all?

Researchers Predict U.S. Furnace Industry Is Doomed

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in April 1

OAK RIDGE, TENN., April 1 — According to Andrei Constantinescu, a senior researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, it won’t be long before new American homes no longer require central heating. “Every year, the heat produced by electronic gadgets is increasing,” explained Constantinescu. “By 2014, most new American homes won’t need a furnace.” As televisions get larger, their heat output increases. “Four plasma TVs can heat a house in Kentucky,” said Constantinescu. “If you throw in a set-top box and two or three computers, you should be fine as far north as Maine.”

Rural Vermont Outsulation

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in humor

My grandmother grew up in a sod house in South Dakota, and she often used to tell me about one of the chores she performed every fall: banking the home's walls with horse manure to help keep the family warm. In rural Vermont, the usual method of banking houses involves hay bales — in some cases supplemented with polyethylene or blue tarps. When I moved to Vermont in 1975, I could get mulch hay for free. Now farmers sell hay for $3 a bale — even spoiled hay that's only fit for mulch. As hay gets more expensive, rural residents are turning to more modern materials to bank their walls.

’Twas the Night Before Christmas

Posted on April 28,2015 by user-756436 in Christmas

’Twas the night before Christmas, when blizzards and chills Strain my budget by raising my energy bills; All the stockings were swaying — a cold winter breeze Made my home’s leaky envelope feel like Swiss cheese (The old windows and ceilings have so many gaps That the kids have to sleep in their kerchiefs and caps) — When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter, I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter. Away to the window I flew like a flash, And I yanked up the creaky old single-pane sash.

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