My nephew, JD Parmely is a very busy guy. He is a mechanic by trade, but in reality he is a mechanic for life. I can’t say that I know of anyone who spends as many hours in a garage as JD does. I thought my husband, Bob Schulenberg, who is JD’s uncle spent a lot of hours in the garage, but he doesn’t even come close to JD’s time in the garage. JD owns at least 15 vehicles. Some are classics some are daily drivers, and he is always tinkering on one or the other of them…that is when he isn’t working on someone else’s car.

JD has many friends who need work done on their cars, and JD is their go-to guy. JD’s specialty is Hondas, but he can work on most types of vehicles. He also has two uncles, Bob and Ron Schulenberg, and two brothers, Barry Schulenberg and Eric Parmely, all of whom help each other on jobs needing a second set of hands. They also share information when one or the other has a difficult job. Sometimes a job needs two minds to get it done…a fact that every mechanic knows.

While JD loves mechanic work, there is one thing that he just might love more…yep, I think he loves his nieces, Reagan, Hattie, and Maeve Parmely; and nephew, Bowen Parmely more. JD doesn’t mind rough housing with them, swinging them around, riding bikes with them, and whatever else they might dream up to play with their Uncle JD. In most ways, JD is a kid at heart. He can totally relate to his nieces and nephew, and doesn’t mind playing with them one bit. They love hanging out with him and hanging on him…another thing JD doesn’t mind.

JD can always be counted on to help with any job, from mechanics to loading and splitting wood. The boys have cut a lot of wood in their lifetimes. A couple of weeks ago, while having a family picnic on Casper Mountain, at JD’s mom, Jennifer Parmely and her partner, Brian Cratty’s cabin, the boys loaded a trailer full of wood for Eric and his wife, Ashley’s house. It works out well that the landowners on the mountain need to mitigate the downfall to protect to mountain from fire. It gives the guys wood for fires, and also something to do while loading it, hahahaha!! They all need something to do with themselves when they are not “mechanic-ing.” Today is JD’s birthday!! Happy birthday JD!! Have a great day!! We love you!!

Most of us have received a speeding ticket in our years of driving, and if not, I’m sure that every one of us has exceeded the speed limit at one time or another, even if it was accidental, and only for a few seconds. It seems that most of the accidents of that era were blamed on excessive speed. In the 1900s, the Mercedes-Simplex 60HP could reach a maximum speed of 73 miles per hour. By 1920, the Duesenberg Model J could reach speeds of 119 miles per hour. Of course, we have vehicles today that can reach much higher speeds…such as the Koenigsegg Agera RS that has a maximum speed of 278. We have come a long way from the days of the Horse Carriage that had a maximum speed of 30 miles per hour, but in 1900, we had no speed limit. The maximum speed of the car was the acceptable speed limit, whether the driver could control the vehicle at that speed or not. How many people do you know who have good control of a vehicle at 119 miles per hour? Most people couldn’t honestly claim to be in control at that speed.

Speed restrictions, and laws against speeding weren’t new on August 28, 1923. The first law regarding automobile speeds actually too effect on May 21, 1901 in Connecticut. The law required that vehicles limit their speed in cities to 12 miles per hour, and 15 miles per hour on country roads. In 1899, a cab driver named Jacob German had been arrested for driving his electric taxi at a speed of 12 miles per hour. It was thought that a more prudent speed would have been 8 miles per hour. Representative Robert Woodruff wanted to make a law, and he suggested 8 miles per hour on city streets and 12 on country roads. In the end the speeds were changed to 12 miles per hour on city streets and 15 miles per hour on country roads. While those speeds seem like crawling to the drivers of today, I suppose they seemed fast then.

Still, drivers were as unwilling to abide by the speed regulations of that day, as they are today. Then, it was decided to make a law that would be a true deterrent to speeders. It was a strict law…too strict, in fact, but they had to try. The law allowed the magistrates…police, to put the car in a storage lot for periods of time depending on the severity of the speeding offence and if the motorist is a repeat offender. Also, due to the increases in incidents, some offenders were sentenced to farm labor. Now, if that wouldn’t deter you from speeding I just don’t know what will. Still, such severity of punishment really would never be accepted for long, as we all know. And of course, that is not a law today…but it was once.

One of the most unique buildings in the United States is the Pentagon. I’m sure that most people think that it was built the way it was to provide a better level of security for the people working within its walls, but that was not the case at all.

The Pentagon was originally planned for a different location, but for reasons unknow, the structure could not be built on that location. The original location was a rather tight space, so in an effort to fit the building in the field that was located between five major roads, the design of an irregular pentagon was chosen. The building couldn’t be very tall due to regulations in the area, and so the design was an almost-level irregular pentagon. Still, the building needed to house 40,000 people and have parking for 10,000 vehicles. That is a very tall order, for a short building. In the end, the planned location, was not allowed, and the Pentagon had to be moved.

Of course, with the location change, it was thought, at first, that the design to be changed too, but everyone involved in the design immediately got mad about the change. The designer had already been paid for his work, and it wasn’t really fair to take the payment back, nor did they want to pay for something they did not use. Finally it was decided to go ahead with the original design, and the result is the well-known, irregular pentagon shape that we are all very familiar with. While the Pentagon is synonymous world-wide with defense, he design had nothing to do with defense at all, but rather it was in an effort to put the building in the space allowed…much like a child putting a square peg in a square hole so that it fits.

fords-assembly-line-1These days, so many things are automated, that we hardly know how to work in an environment that requires us to hand build everything. Machines often make most of the things we buy, but it wasn’t always so. In the beginning of the automobile age, cars had to be put together by hand, making it a very slow process. If you are going to sell mass quantities of something, you have to be able to mass produce it. Selling mass quantities of his now famous, Model T, was exactly what Henry Ford wanted to do. So he came up with a way to move the vehicles from one worker to another. Each worker had a specific part they were to place, before the vehicle moved on down the line. Ford’s dream was to make the automobile available to everyone, not just the rich, who could afford to order the new fangled machines. Of course, most people those days didn’t really think that the automobile would ever amount to much, but as we all know, they were very wrong. The automobile has become an absolute necessity for most people…except maybe some in the bigger cities, where owning a car isn’t really feasible because of parking issues and heavy traffic.fords-assembly-line-3

On this day, October 7, 1913, Henry Ford’s entire Highland Park, Michigan automobile factory started running on a continuously moving assembly line where the chassis, which is the automobile’s frame, was assembled using a state of the art, revolutionary industrial technique. A motor and rope pulled the chassis past workers and parts on the factory floor, cutting the man hours required to complete one “Model T” from 12-1/2 hours to six. Within a year, improvements in the assembly line reduced the time required to 93 man minutes…to build a car!! That is just amazing to me. The increase in productivity brought about by Ford’s use of the moving assembly line allowed him to drastically reduce the cost of the Model T. Ford’s goal was to make the car affordable to ordinary consumers. This new process allowed him to realize that goal, and before long, everyone had an automobile.
Since the days of Ford’s antiquated assembly line, automation has vastly improved. These days machines can do so much more that their human counterparts. Of course, that has eliminated more than just a few jobs, but as people have learned to run that equipment, new jobs have opened up. In this world, time doesn’t stand still, and progress waits for no man. You have to learn the new skills as they come along so that you can keep up in this fast paced automated world. Assembly lines have come a long way since those old days, and it’s a good thing, because the automobile is now in very high demand around the world, and people won’t wait very long to get one.

JD1306 S McKinley StreetMy nephew, JD Parmely loves cars…I mean really loves cars!! In fact, I have only known one other person in my entire life who owned more cars than JD. At any given time, he may have anywhere from fifteen to twenty five cars. Now I don’t know about you, but I don’t see how a person could possibly use that many cars. I suppose JD could drive each one about 20 days and then move on to the next vehicle. Of course, insuring all those vehicles can be pricey too…I should know. I’m his insurance agent. JD doesn’t leave all the vehicles on the policy at the same time, because that would be really expensive, and in reality, he doesn’t change vehicles all the time either. With that in mind, I’m sure that you can guess that JD has a lot of vehicles that he doesn’t drive at all. He also has some for winter and others for summer. All that makes sense, but it still leaves vehicles that he doesn’t drive at all. Some are classics, and so they aren’t driven much at all, and others, he fixes up and sells, but for the most part, they all belong to him, and they could be driven anytime he wants to.

When his grandparents’ home had to be put up for sale after his grandfather, Walt Schulenberg passed away, JD found himself in the position to purchase the house. It gave him the garage he needed, and the extra space for at least some of his cars. We were all pleased that JD wanted to buy his grandparents’ home, because that meant that it would stay in the family. Selling your parents’ house after they pass is always hard, but this time it was pretty easy…and JD loves the house. I’m sure it keeps great memories alive for him. The house looks a little bit different these days, because JD loves Ford blue, and of course, all the cars are there, but I think his grandpa, Walt Schulenberg would love the fact that JD lives there.

imageimageJD is a mechanic, mostly on Hondas, but he can work on just about anything, and you might see him out in the garage at any time…day or night. Working on vehicles is his first priority…well, maybe second to work…where he also works on vehicles, hahahaha!! So, I guess that working on vehicles is his first priority in all areas of his life. He’s good at what he does, and liked by all who know him. And even if he does have lots of cars, it’s just a quirk, and we love him anyway. Besides, he stays out of trouble that way. Today is JD’s birthday. Happy birthday JD!! Have a great day!! We love you!!

Baby Shower HelperFrom the time he was just a little boy, my nephew, JD Parmely loved little kids. He got so excited whenever he knew he was getting a new cousin. He wanted to be involved in everything, from the baby shower, to holding the baby, to playing with the kids as they grew. Sometimes, it’s a big help to have JD take over the entertainment of all the little kids…at least until they start making too much noise or rough housing too much. I suppose that is because JD is, in reality, a big kid himself. In a lot of ways, I think he has decided that growing up is overrated, and sometimes I have to agree with him. Plus, he has lots of uncles who have never really grown up either, so he is in good company in that department. I promise you, that his Uncle Bob has never really grown up either…not one bit, in fact.

One of the coolest things to happen in JD’s recent life is the family addition of his niece, Reagan Parmely, who is his brother, Eric and his wife, Ashley’s daughter. He and Reagan get along famously, because both of them like to play. JD has the energy to chase Reagan wherever she decides to go, and for her, that is lots of fun. And now that Reagan is getting a new sister or brother in September, JD will soon have a new little one to play with. At this point, JD really has no desire to get married and have kids of his own, but he is having a great time with his cousins and niece. I guess it pays to be a kid at heart, because all the kids want to hang out with you…and that is exactly what has happened to JD. My grandchildren felt the same way when they were little. JD was the fun guy at all the family gatherings.

Last year, JD bought his first house. It had belonged to his grandparents, and in my opinion, Helping Reagan with her cupcakethe house had felt so lonely. I was so glad that he bought the house, because a home should be lived in, not sitting empty. When JD moved in, there was activity there again. I can’t say if the house feels any less lonely, because those walls can’t talk to me, but I am pretty sure the garage has never felt better. JD loves to work on his multiple vehicles, and therefore, spends hours in the garage…even into the wee hours of the morning, sometimes. JD would have to be called a Vehicle Fanatic, because his must own twelve or fourteen of them. It’s just what he does. And that’s ok. If he enjoys it, he should do it. It’s what makes JD…well, JD!! Today is JD’s birthday. Happy birthday JD!! Have a great day. Don’t work too hard on your cars, and try to get some sleep!! We love you!!

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