Connor, Colton, and Baby Caitlynn arrived with army men, diapers, and a plastic box of coins. Later, I realized what true purpose the plastic box held: "Grandma, if I had four more quarters, I would have three whole dollars!"
I am now poorer of eight, not four quarters and Colton assured me he would share the booty with big brother, Connor. Oh yeah, Colton also predicts the Rangers will win the World Series, too.
As we flipped through our 99 cable channels in search of suitable viewing, Connor regaled us with his sad tale of woe of how the worthless television in his room would only play his video games or a dvd movie, that his Mom and Dad wouldn't even buy him a set of antennas, let alone cable. He asked if he could have the little television that we had in the guest bedroom - the room Connor and Colton use for sleep-overs and short visits. I explained that without a cable connection, even that television wouldn't be any better than the one he had now.
"Grandma, do you have cable in every room of this house?" the young boy asked incredulously.
"Wow, you must be RICH!"
I decided this was a perfect time to have a mini history lesson on the father of electricity and list all the reasons Americans are far far richer than people in many countries, how young boys in Africa had little food or shelter and that they didn't have a GameBox, much less electricity.
"Yeah", Connor said, "they just have gerbils".
A long pause while Grandma puzzled over this...and then she had to excuse herself to the back bedroom with Kman to relieve a bad case of the laughing fits.
For the scientifically challenged:
Gerbils busily scampering inside a wire wheel create enough electricity to power a Christmas tree bulb. (Father Electricity, Thomas Edison, obviously forgot about mammal power.)
Here are a few alternative ways to "go green" from Gorskys all in the spirit of that fun pastime - pushing out your cheek with your tongue and rolling it around for comic effect:
Harness the energy of children by strapping them to exercise bikes to power their PlayStations. (Similar to the gerbil theory of electro-mammal current.)
Harness the sun's rays by doing all your cooking in a solar oven. Harness the moon's rays by by doing all your salad cooking in a lunar-oven. The constant whining of environmental activists could be captured to power screenings of An Inconvenient Truth.
Generate enough electricity to power 3,000 homes by strapping a kinetic energy converter to the knees of a teenage boy as he waits nervously for his date to answer the door bell.
4,000 homes could be heated every week by convincing the very flatulent to wear wind turbines in their underpants. For little extra expense, an optional air filter could be attached to remove CO2 and methane from the atmosphere.
Attaching a methane-converter to the air-conditioning of a singles bar would remove 2,000 tonnes of bull-shit every Saturday.
Mattresses sold to brothels could be wired to convert every thrust into electrical energy, which is then used to power the red light out the front. This would make the brothel completely carbon-neutral, even if it's not condom-neutral.
Don't waste electricity powering an electric blanket. Placing your laptop between the sheets for five minutes will make your bed toasty warm.
Junk mail makes great roof insulation, turning this pesky trash into a cheap way to keep your house cool.
A reverse-pacemaker could be attached to the hearts of conservation-minded Starbuck's customers to capture their caffeine jolt and power a city the size of Seattle.
The sexual frustration of single men could be harnessed to power their Saturday night's web-surfing activities.
Hula hoop turbines could be attached to high school cheer leaders to power the lights for night football. As a bonus, strainometers attached to the pants of male spectators to additionally provide electricity for the entire town.
Energy aware bullies could purchase energy-capturing knuckle dusters so that every punch counts.
The enthusiasm of six-year old boys can be harnessed to create cheap illustrations for web sites.
Driving SUVs is wasteful and environmentally damaging. Burying the SUVs and their drives is a good start at carbon reduction and will also decrease road rage incidents.
The nervous anticipation of Harry Potter fans eager to find out who dies in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows could be used to power the printing presses that bring them the answer. This would make the book the first in the world to be entirely carbon neutral, if not carbon-negative.
Environmentalism can save the world in other ways too. The sound of key-strokes make by screen-writers trying to get their screenplay about the coming of age of a troubled teenage could be recorded and used by the CIA at Guantanamo Bay to torture victims and bring about world peace.