From the full version of Sunnyside's Lousy Book.
Heat on my Tail
I realized I was having a difficult time coming up with the money to get my inventions patented and I was contemplating on getting incorporated. That way I could not only cover the expenses of getting my inventions patented, but get them into production as well. I thought it was the logical way of getting things underway because there was a mix of different kinds of people that would come in contact with me around town, but the question was whether I’d find the ones who would want to invest in me.
I began to notice certain vehicles behind me that lead me to believe that I was being followed. At times it seemed that if I would operate my truck anywhere there would be people just waiting around a corner and they’d come out of nowhere and tell me that just because they saw it, I wouldn't be able to get a patent on it. Someone once said to me, "Don't bother filling for a patent on it. The Japanese will steal it anyway.”
I became a little paranoid about the time when I was approached by an older black man in the parking lot of the local grocery store. With a big smile he said, "How does it feel?” For me it was a mixed question. I couldn't quite understand how I should feel about it because I was left wondering whether he was congratulating me, or if he was aware of the heat on my tail. I said, "Just fine with a 40 caliber in my belt."
Towards the end of the summer I gathered some of the left-over hydraulic fittings from my project and made a trip down to William's Oil Filter to return them and use the refund as a payment on my credit card. After doing this, the conspirators working for the City of Tacoma must have figured out my next move because a few days later I gathered more leftover adapters and fittings to take back to the “other” hydraulic shop located in the tide flats. As I loaded the bag of parts into my truck, I swore I heard one of the neighbours next door to the north say, "He's taking the fittings back."
It makes sense to me that since I had taken fittings back to William's Oil Filter just a few days prior; I'm sure they were anticipating my arrival at the “other” hydraulic hose supply. By the way; there are two businesses located in Tacoma that have the same name even though they don't deal in the same kind of product. I'd rather not give them a plug in my book but I will say that the name starts with "T" and their names are short for a series of words that state what they are; if you get my drift -- could both be businesses subsidized by the city of Tacoma.
As soon as I got off the freeway and on the Port of Tacoma road, I noticed a suspicious looking vehicle behind me. I assumed it was the tail suspected since leaving my place. When I arrived at the hose shop, I parked my truck along side of the building next to railroad tracks.
At the time I was still having trouble with hydraulic chatter created by the load locks hooked up in the lines to the assisting mechanical. I was planning to exchange some of the leftover fitting for a couple J.I.C. type “T” fittings to replace the load lock to determine if they would eliminate the chatter problem.
Since then I've learned more about the four port load locks manufactured by the Metro hydraulic company, by looking at their schematics. The load locks have a built in flow control to create backup pressure, but unfortunately the adjustment is only designed to restrict flow to cause backup pressure on one side of the component and I would need it on both sides since the assisting mechanical has the ability to overrun in both directions. I've learned that the better component for doing what I had the load lock for -- is refer to as an overrun valve -- commonly used on elevators.
As I was at the counter inside the hydraulic shop, an employee for the City of Tacoma was being helped at the opposite end of the counter. I'm sure he was sent there to be there at the time because I heard him or someone else say, "It's Dan's truck.” It backed my suspicion that Dan, the building inspector in deed had been spying on me all along and they were trying to lead me to believe that Dan had stolen the invention.
While a couple of employees were adding up the list of fittings I’d returned; I went outside to make sure I was about to pick up the right configuration of "T" fittings to eliminate the four port load lock. I got out a wrench to adjust the built-in flow control within the load lock because I felt it was still worth a try to keep the load lock in the system if I could.
Strange things began to unfold. A young man who worked at the shop had came outside and said, "How's it do eighty?" Another one of his fellow employees said "Don't file, save your money."
All of a sudden a few of trucks pulled into the parking lot and a bunch of hydraulic mechanics warring matching blue coveralls climbed out of them. They looked as if they worked for the City of Tacoma and the strange thing was that they didn't even walk up to the front door. Instead they walked around the side of the building towards back of the building, past my truck but out a ways a distance from the building, tracks, and my truck.
I realize that in the middle of the summer, most mechanics would want to take off their dirty coveralls before going any-where, but the peculiar thing about their coveralls was is how clean they were.
As I walked back towards the front door of the store, I noticed a gal posting a sign on the front door announcing a free barbeque lunch that day. It seems strange to me that they didn't put the notice on the door at least a week or two earlier than they did and it’s even more peculiar how the mechanics showed up before the sign was even posted. I have the feeling that the picnic was activated as soon as I pulled off the freeway.
Once I was back inside at the counter I asked one of the boys that worked there, "What's the free lunch was for?"
"We're having an open house," he said, "We just want to show people what kind of stuff we have."
I assume that most hydraulic mechanics already know what hydraulic hose and fittings look like, as well as what’s available. I back this speculation because the mechanics in question went directly around back to eat the free meals and never entered the store. And another strange thing about the free lunch was that all the guys that attended seemed to be employees of the same place. It seems to me that if a business is going to have a free luncheon, they’d have more than one group of clientèle.
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