From time to time my family would vacation to California and visit his family, and stay for a couple of weeks quite near his house. The details aren’t really relevant, but he and I would hang out like old times when our families would visit. I spent almost the Alabama Crimson Tide one nation under God shirt moreover I love this whole time on every vacation at his house. The only difference when he checked versus when she checked was he gave a narrative of medical terms that I can’t remember or can’t pronounce, or both. He also didn’t have a clue about the equipment or how it worked. But if you asked him, he was the world’s expert on all of it, going so far as to argue with the engineers when they would try to correct his misunderstandings. As a result, the engineers as well refused to be anywhere near him. Eventually, the company decided that a change was necessary. But rather than fire Duane, they moved him into the project planning department where he wasn’t in charge of anyone, wasn’t allowed to touch the equipment, and just worked alone in a cubicle. Fast forward a couple of years. I’m working on testing a new type of 138 kV breaker and we have a technical representative from the manufacturer on-site. Duane shows up to ask the tech rep some questions he has. Duane’s smirk was long gone. It was replaced by an ever-increasing reddening of his entire head that caused me to think that it might explode. Anyway, one day while we were in the garage he pointed out something he had found. There was a set of shelves built into the wall where the noise of the cars would be if you pulled in. The shelves were unusual in that they had a full-frame around them, and the shelves themselves sat sort-of half-in and half-out of the wall. He had noticed that there was a hinge that could be seen on the side of these shelves, on the side closest to the wall. And after sufficient exploration, he had noticed a latch on top of the shelves, well-above a normal person’s eye level. He lifted the latch, and we swung the shelves open. My buddy punched a small hole in the drywall in the garage, and ran an extension cord from the garage and into the secret space, for light and for music. And also for a refrigerator for the beer! And he also drilled out a little hole and ran a fishing line to make sure he could lift the latch from the inside, to get back out.
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