Thursday, 24 October 2013

10:26 – Things are kind of peaceful around here. Back during the craziness in August we were routinely shipping four or five kits a day, and some days as many as a dozen. Even though we had plenty of subassemblies queued up, just boxing up and shipping kits kept things kind of hectic. Things have calmed down now. We might ship one or two kits a day, and some days none at all. I think the biggest day we’ve had this month we shipped only three kits.

The good thing about that is that it gives me time to work on the earth science kit, not to mention administrative stuff that I’ve been letting slide. For example, as I was making up kits yesterday I opened our next-to-last case of 100 goggles and noticed that we’re now down to about 150 thermometers. I’d been meaning to re-order, but this morning I finally took the time to get 200 more goggles and 350 more thermometers on order.

I spent some time on the phone yesterday with a guy who teaches an on-line chemistry course at a large community college. He’d been building chemistry kits for students, but said that it had become just too much work. As I said, tell me about it. So, starting with the January 2014 semester, they want to start ordering our chemistry kits, probably 30 kits to start and then 30+ every semester after that. This is starting to become a regular thing, and I’m thinking we might need to shift our focus from only homeschoolers/hobbyists to meet the needs of public and private schools and colleges. I can easily foresee getting to the point where we’re shipping hundreds or even thousands of kits in bulk orders to such institutions.


16 thoughts on “Thursday, 24 October 2013”

  1. I can easily foresee getting to the point where we’re shipping hundreds or even thousands of kits in bulk orders to such institutions.

    Is that the point where you break down crying or go hire an army?

  2. Realistically, assuming Barbara retires from her day job and starts working for our company full-time, we can probably do 2,500 kits a year without hiring anyone (other than some casual contract labor) or renting space. Call it half a million in annual revenue. I don’t plan to get to that point until 2017 or thereabouts. By that time, we’ll probably have relocated, perhaps up to the North Carolina mountains around Boone. We plan to buy or build a house with a work building on the same property that’s large enough to handle volume of 5,000 to 10,000 kits per year.

  3. We plan to buy or build a house with a work building on the same property

    Man Cave! You’ve gotta have a big big screen and a sofa in there.

  4. So the assumption is that colleges, public and private schools in large numbers, and the net and Grid will continue operating into our foreseeable future and that people will still be willing and able to purchase educational kits in those numbers. And that the materials for the kits will still be available. I admire your optimism, and hope you’re right.

    44 here in Retroville today and pahtly sunny, very windy. Yesterday has turned out to be the only windless day in a week and genius that I am, I burned rubbish and did a bunch of other stuff outside accordingly.

    I hear on the radio that various parties are pointing fingers down in Mordor over the ObummerCARE fiasco and also that the Saudis ain’t speaking right now to Obummer ’cause they miffed at him. November should be interesting; when millions find out they’re taking a big hit on their food stamps prior to the “holiday season” and the health care leviathan lumbers on, while more hundreds of thousands are dumped off the medical insurance rolls. So there you are; mom and dad and two kids. Dad’s been laid off, and both parents are on food stamps and working multiple shitty part-time jobs that cost more for the gas to get to them than they get paid most days. They’ve been dropped from their health insurance. No dental anyway. And it cost more than they paid in rent or mortgage. The car’s on the fritz. Rolling power brownouts and blackouts. Kids are barely literate and glued to tee-vee and net all day. School spends most of the time indoctrinating them in socialist bullshit.

    Come Thanksgiving and their food stamps have been cut; a shade-tree mechanic fixed the car but now some other crap has gone wrong on it. Elderly MIL moving in and insulation on the house sucks and now they gotta buy meds every month, too. House is heated with oil and that’s going way up, up, up.

    These ain’t goldbricking slackers; they and their parents worked their asses off their whole lives, played the game, paid into the system, and kept their noses clean. Now they’re being told in so many words to fuck off and die.

  5. Come Thanksgiving and their food stamps have been cut; a shade-tree mechanic fixed the car but now some other crap has gone wrong on it. Elderly MIL moving in and insulation on the house sucks and now they gotta buy meds every month, too. House is heated with oil and that’s going way up, up, up.

    I blame George W. Bush. I actually saw that over the weekend!
    http://www.cnsnews.com/mrctv-blog/matt-vespa/shutdown-bushs-fault

    Seriously, how do you fix this? The USA government is the cause of costs rapidly going up due its inflating of the dollar. You just cannot spend four dollars for every three dollars that you get in perpetuity. And that is down! It was spending three dollars for every two dollars received there for a while but the Repubs in the House shut that down (sequestration).

    And this winter is suppose to be ultra cold, maybe a throwback to the 1970s horrible winters. Better lay in more wood for the stove.

    And, switch everything in the USA to natural gas in a hurry. Nobody should be using heating oil in the USA anymore. Heating oil is just another name for diesel and kerosene. The government should be encouraging people to build massive pipelines to the east cost (the cost is roughly ten million dollars per mile with compressor stations every 100 miles or so).

  6. So the assumption is that colleges, public and private schools in large numbers, and the net and Grid will continue operating into our foreseeable future and that people will still be willing and able to purchase educational kits in those numbers. And that the materials for the kits will still be available. I admire your optimism, and hope you’re right.

    So, what, I should just give up now?

  7. By that time, we’ll probably have relocated, perhaps up to the North Carolina mountains around Boone

    Looks like a nice area!

  8. “So, what, I should just give up now?”

    No. I suppose we all should take precautions but continue with life as we tried/try to plan it and would like it to work out for us. You probably have a window of opportunity to make enough in the next few years to have a good cushion and a viable place to live and work after you move. I really hope so and wish you the best, of course.

    My guess is that we are seeing increasing signs of decline and collapse and it will begin accelerating around 2015-2020, during the term of whichever entity is next in the WH. My further guess is that the Twenties are going to suck real bad here. But lots worse in the rest of the world. As for energy needs here, I don’t see anything commonsensical, such as Lynn proposes, being done in time to make an appreciable difference. The politics and finances involved will preclude this. And it isn’t bad enough that we have incompetents and fools running too many crucial enterprises and infrastructures here; we also have outright malicious and criminal bastards doing their worst.

    We can blame the Repubs, the Dems, Bush, Reagan, Clinton, Obummer, FDR, the commies, the hadjis, the blacks, the Jews, etc., etc. but all of that is a waste of time and effort and gets us nowhere, except probable scenes, again, of violence and supposed revenge and retribution. Nevertheless, that is what will probably be happening in many areas.

    My hope is that there are enough decent, civil-minded and competent people still here in this country who can hang on through some very tough times that will not only make the Depression look like a day at the beach, but quite possibly the Black Death as well. And who will help each other and what remains of the country survive.

  9. Well, Dave, as I’ve argued repeatedly here, there are tons of really competent people around, including most or all of the regular posters here and most or all of my off-line friends and acquaintances. When something needs done, we do it. When something important is broken, we fix it. When something is needed, we make it. It’s what we do.

    Yeah, I’d prefer to be away from the Winston metro area, but I don’t think it’s that urgent. Yeah, I store food and otherwise prepare for emergencies, but as I’ve said repeatedly, for the reason I mention above and several others, I do not expect any sudden crash but rather a slow slide into a dystopian future.

    And I believe that the primary duty of all of us is to produce a new generation of scientists, engineers, and other competent do-ers. That’s what I focus on.

  10. Harry Reid can bite me. I paid 17% of my gross income in federal income taxes last year. Plus I paid $22K in property taxes last year (getting ready to pay $26K in property taxes this year). Plus all the SS and Medicare taxes that the wife and I paid (I maxed my SS in Sept). Plus all the sales taxes I paid at our Texas 8.25% rate.

    I believe that the Federal government ingo and outgo should be the same. And am willing to pay a little more. But not double. But the ingo and outgo won’t be balanced as long as the idiots in charge advertise free welfare benefits:
    http://www.wnd.com/2013/04/feds-caught-promoting-welfare-to-foreigners/
    Or as long as the food stamp people have a quota of signing up 150 recipients per month:
    http://nation.foxnews.com/2013/10/17/study-food-stamps-most-rapidly-growing-welfare-program

    I love this comment, “We ought to be able to buy gasoline with foodstamps, as at least 10% of it is corn.”. Really?

  11. Rudyard Kipling is freaking awesome. I loved the “The Jungle Book” way before the movie. Edgar Rice Burroughs should have paid homage to Kipling for his Tarzan books every day.

  12. Lynn wrote:

    By that time, we’ll probably have relocated, perhaps up to the North Carolina mountains around Boone

    Looks like a nice area!”

    I’m told that the “noms”, as Jerry Coyne would say, are excellent in Boone. Either he or one of his fanboys/girls recommended:

    http://www.danlbooneinn.com/

  13. And to pay more taxes. That according to my PoS Senator, Reid. EEEEverybody WWWants to pay more taxes. Mr. Bob please go to the IRS site and pay more, because my Senator said so.

    Wasn’t that an Obama soundbite from his 2008 campaign? When asked about redistribution of wealth being “unamerican” he replied with something to the effect of “I don’t think greed is the American way.” Hypocritical that he denounces individual “greed,” but supports government greed.

Comments are closed.