Tag Archives: machines

Spinning mysteries

Whining, grounding sounds caught my attention as I entered the LaGuardia restroom. I quickly identified two sources. Beside each sink hung automatic towel dispensers.

Wave your hand below it and a dispenser will spit out a towel for your use. A simple economic, ecological concept and process.

Except. At this moment, two of the dispensers displayed symptoms of some form of mechanical possession. Mindlessly they churned. With no one seeking a towel, they churned. On and on they churned.

One produced an endless stream of towels that created a pile on the sink. The other, empty, simply spun, grinding gears, producing nothing.

As I found a dispenser that worked as intended by its designers, I pondered the mysteries of the moment. The mysteries of spinning one’s wheels and producing nothing. The mysteries of spinning one’s wheels and producing something that no one wants.

And I realized that I have done both. Often. But I am not alone.

See you along the Trail.

29 November 2011
Delta Terminal, LGA

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