Thursday, 27 April 2017

08:37 – It was 57.1F (14C) when I took Colin out at 0645 this morning, gray and breezy. Barbara left at 0745 to run errands down in Winston. She’ll make a Costco run on her way back.

I gave her a small shopping list for Costco. In addition to the fresh stuff that she’d mentioned–ground beef, rolls, bread, butter, etc.–I’d added my stuff:

♦ one 50-pound (23-kilo) bag of bread flour
♦ one 50-pound bag of white rice
♦ one 50-pound bag of white sugar
♦ three #10 cans (3 lbs. each) Costco regular coffee
♦ one box of 312 tea bags
♦ one or two cases of evaporated milk
♦ large bag of chocolate chips
♦ one or two two-packs of peanut butter
♦ one bottle Costco vanilla extract
♦ one case of green beans
♦ case of tomato paste
♦ canned cream soups

Nutritionally, that’s roughly 300,000 calories. Call it four person-months. Barbara commented that she’d read on my page that we were taking a break from adding food. I said that we were, except that I planned to continue adding bulk staples incrementally.


Barbara feeds Science Diet dry dog food to Colin. He gets one cup (106 grams) twice a day. It’s 19.6% protein, 14.9% fat, 2.4% crude fiber, and 58.0% carbohydrates. Colin also gets lots of treats and human food throughout the day. I made a rough estimate of his total food intake to use in planning how much LTS food we need for Colin. In a long-term emergency he’ll be eating what we eat. (Unlike cats, which are obligate carnivores, dogs are, like humans, omnivores.) Long story short, it turns out that Colin, at 65 pounds, needs about 0.5 person worth of nutrition.

* * * * *

64 thoughts on “Thursday, 27 April 2017”

  1. We gave up on Costco for canned vegetables. IIRC, the last time we compared, the Del Monte brand green beans at Sam’s were ~ 30% cheaper than Costco/Kirkland Organic.

    Lynn — My wife found the canned ravioli at the Sam’s near her office, across from Dell HQ in Round Rock.

    Definitely hit or miss with Sam’s as of late here in Austin. The store also had 2-liter Coke products while the one near our house didn’t have any.

    Dunno if Dell makes a difference. They’ve gone heavy on H1B labor since going private.

    When we first moved to Austin, Dell called to offer me $12/hr to test their outsourced server fiasco. When I countered that for $12/hr, I only test and report problems, no code beyond testing, the response from the HR droid came back, “With that attitude, good luck finding something in Austin!”

  2. 68 and another sunny day w/blue skies, very light breeze.

    Another exciting day of errands and chores interrupted by the vets group meeting followed by a consult with my primary care MD. I’ll tell her my back is better after the two shots but not 100% and that I’m trying to get some weight off and more exercise. What’s the next move, if any? Also is there anything that will help me knock out this head cold, which has now, of course, migrated to my chest. It’s probably going away on its own anyway within the week and I keep loading up on C and eating a lot and drinking gallons of water and juice. Meanwhile I’m back to sleeping in the chair again so I can breathe at night. What a wuss.

    Lots of seagull activity on the bay lately for some reason, and our cardinals are back; dunno where they went because normally they stay through the winter. And I can see that I’m gonna have to mow the lawn by next week, too; shit, we just got over a blizzard!

  3. ” What’s the next move, if any? ”

    Chiropractic and stretching. Yoga or Tai Chi Chuan.

    Chiro is very dependent on Dr, many are just ambulance chasers, but some get great results. I’ve had both kinds.

    Stretching you can do on your own.

    n

  4. I prefer the clientèle at Costco over Sam’s Club. I know that sounds snotty, but the older I get the more and more inclined I am to pay a small premium to avoid people like the Sam’s Club/Walmart clientèle. I’m just tired of sharing space with certain personality types.

    My MIL really liked BJ’s Wholesale Club when she lived in upstate NY, but I’ve never been to one of those.

  5. I prefer the clientèle at Costco over Sam’s Club
    It must be a local thing. In our AO, southern Memphis TN / Northern MS, it’s reversed. You get a much “better class” of shoppers at Sam’s vs Costco. Now that I know the hateful Sam’s CEO is gone, we will switch back when our membership expires this yr.

  6. Chiropractic? – Just get a massage – the ending is better. (watch out for that masseur however)

  7. I prefer the clientèle at Costco over Sam’s Club. I know that sounds snotty, but the older I get the more and more inclined I am to pay a small premium to avoid people like the Sam’s Club/Walmart clientèle. I’m just tired of sharing space with certain personality types.

    Depends on where you live. Back during our sentence -er- tenure there, the Costco on the north end of Vancouver, WA tended to be a bit of a freak show because the store was convenient to the freeway and was, IIRC, the last one northbound out of Portland until you got to Olympia. Other Costco stores in the dystopia, such as Federal Way, could be sketchy as well.

    The one constant with the warehouse stores I’ve noticed, regardless of clientele, is that poorly-run stores don’t remain that way for long, regardless of location … Well, with the possible exception of the snack bars.

  8. Some interesting and germane thoughts concerning “libertarianism” in its current incarnation:

    https://westernrifleshooters.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/do-you-understand-yet-14/

    “It is why the Dissident Right should treat modern libertarians like plague carrying rage zombies. Economics is down stream from culture, far down stream. The willingness of libertarians to stab the Right in the back over culture issues just so they can score some rhetorical points over economics makes them more dangerous than the Left. Every war is a culture war, even the shooting kind. It is one group aiming to prove that their gods, their ways, their culture is superior, by imposing it on others, by any means necessary.”

    I used to see this kinda stuff on FaceCrack; libertarians there would split hairs as fine as any medieval Scholastic over arcane Austrian theory and “excommunicate” dissidents. Much like trad Roman Catholics do the same over arcana concerning the clerical vestments on a Tuesday during Ordinary Time if it’s x number of days from the Julian calendar Easter. And once again, dissidents are metaphorically excommunicated.

    That kinda stuff annoys most people after a while and they turn away from it or shut it down. There is a difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of it, and we have countless examples going back to Solomon and Socrates.

  9. Promises, promises…

    https://refugeeresettlementwatch.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/trump-has-admitted-12218-refugees-since-inauguration-day-1472-syrians-1359-somalis/

    Looks like biz as usual on the refugee front and jingo military posturing and adventurism overseas.

    “THE WRATH OF THE AWAKENED SAXON
    by Rudyard Kipling

    It was not part of their blood,
    It came to them very late,
    With long arrears to make good,
    When the Saxon began to hate.

    They were not easily moved,
    They were icy — willing to wait
    Till every count should be proved,
    Ere the Saxon began to hate.

    Their voices were even and low.
    Their eyes were level and straight.
    There was neither sign nor show
    When the Saxon began to hate.

    It was not preached to the crowd.
    It was not taught by the state.
    No man spoke it aloud
    When the Saxon began to hate.

    It was not suddently bred.
    It will not swiftly abate.
    Through the chilled years ahead,
    When Time shall count from the date
    That the Saxon began to hate.

    “This destiny does not tire, nor can it be broken, and its mantle of
    strength descends upon those in its service.””
    – Francis Parker Yockey,
    IMPERIUM

  10. The French anti-terrorism cops are switching rifles for the special forces because they are running into Islamic terrorists with body armor. The NATO 5.56×45 rounds don’t do well against them.
    https://strategypage.com/htmw/htsf/articles/20170427.aspx

    Once again, if you are interested in military-political affairs all over the world, check Strategy Page from time to time.

  11. “I prefer the clientèle at Costco over Sam’s Club. I know that sounds snotty, but the older I get the more and more inclined I am to pay a small premium to avoid people like the Sam’s Club/Walmart clientèle. I’m just tired of sharing space with certain personality types.”

    Barbara and I agree completely with this. The only Costco we’ve spent enough time in to judge is the Winston-Salem one, and the only Sam’s we’ve ever been in are the two in Winston-Salem.

    Judging who’s middle or upper-middle class by clothing or other appearance factors is difficult, so we judge by parking lots. The Costco lot is always full of MC/UMC-type vehicles, while both Sam’s parking lots have had a very high proportion of lower/working-class vehicles every time we’ve been there. And the Costco employees are definitely friendlier and more helpful, versus generally (not always) surly employees at Sam’s. Actually, the last time we were at Sam’s, one of the staff was as friendly and helpful as anyone at Costco, but she was the exception.

  12. You will not find a lot of stuff online about how UNsafe a Costco parking lot is, but you will find LOTS of examples of walmart being dangerous. Sams is different, sure, but not that different.

    n

  13. Re: Libertarians/libertarians

    Yes, libertarians and particularly Libertarians love to argue how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. Geez, when I was working for the LNC during the 1980 presidential campaign, there were pitched battles about Ed Clarke’s intention to cut federal spending by 50% the first year. The radicals among us quoted Spooner, “gradualism in theory is perpetuity in practice,” and demanded a 100% cut the first day. The battles beween the (huge) majority mainstream Libertarians and the anti-abortion “Libertarians for Life” were also interesting to watch. But, as Pournelle said to me more than once, “libertarianism is a vector, not a destination.”

    I’m sorry that author considers me more dangerous to his goals than his prog opponents. As I think should be obvious to anyone who follows this page, I’m not dangerous to anyone who’s anti-prog. Yes, I support abortion on demand, legalizing all drugs, etc. etc. and I’m an atheist who is hostile to all forms of religion. But I’ll make common cause with the pro-life, anti-drug, religious people (like many here) as long as they stay out of my face and don’t try to force me to behave according to their beliefs.

  14. Any parking lot is dangerous, as you know. Thinking back over the last several years, I think there’ve been as many reports of muggings, etc. in the Costco lot as in Sam’s.

    Walmart is another question, at least in bigger cities. They just have a much, much lower class of customers. Up here in the mountains, the Walmarts that we’ve been to are completely different. Their customers (and staff) are obviously representative of the area, which is to say completely lacking in diversity. And even our few diversity people are just like anyone else up here. That’s one of the things I really like about the area. That, and that no one tries to force other people to behave the way they think is right. In the 18 months we’ve lived up here, I’ve yet to be confronted by anyone with a religious agendum, for example. No one has even asked us which church we attend. I guess it really doesn’t matter to them and they just automatically assume we go to some church.

  15. https://www.fool.com/investing/2016/06/17/who-is-costcos-favorite-customer.aspx

    http://www.businessinsider.com/walmart-shopper-demographics-2016-10

    http://infoscout.co/retailer/samsclub/

    and as a comparison, our regional chain, HEB

    http://infoscout.co/retailer/heb/

    I’m sure that what’s missing from the aggregate is the effect of region.

    Forex- HEB builds their new, ‘big’ stores in primarily affluent areas. They behave in the store like Costco, having samples and demos, and specials that last most of the month with rotating items over time.

    n

  16. well walmart may just have a perception problem, or it may in fact be dramatically more dangerous

    Look at the TYPES of hits with this search-

    Walmart- most of the hits are ‘wrap up’ articles talking about the problem

    Costco and sams- most of the hits are individual crimes, some so rare that the hits are for the SAME crime multiple times.

    Taken at face value, I’m gonna say walmart is orders of magnitude more dangerous.

    n

  17. Duh, I just realized that “antifa” stands for “antifascists”. I guess that these poor misguided children do not realize that they are the fascists in this scenario.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/04/27/portland-rose-parade-canceled-after-antifascists-threaten-gop-marchers/

    I watched the first episode of “Genius” on the National Geographic channel last weekend. It is about the education and life of Albert Einstein in Germany so far. And it shows the rise of the Nazis in detail, much more than I really want to see.
    http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/genius/

  18. When we first moved to Austin, Dell called to offer me $12/hr to test their outsourced server fiasco. When I countered that for $12/hr, I only test and report problems, no code beyond testing, the response from the HR droid came back, “With that attitude, good luck finding something in Austin!”

    Generous, they are ! $12/hour really shows what is going on in the IT industry. One of my friends got laid off a couple of weeks ago. He was building the standard PC image for a large company with 35,000 PCs and making $100k/year. They have decided to move everything to the cloud and are outsourcing everything. They plan on using internet appliances instead of PCs. He would have stayed for half his salary.

    In actuality, we have found that the testers should not be coders. That allows the tester to be more critical and supportive of the users.

  19. Judging who’s middle or upper-middle class by clothing or other appearance factors is difficult, so we judge by parking lots.
    Judging a persons financial status by vehicles is not so easy either. In the study published in the book “The Millionaire Next Door”, the authors found that entrepreneurial millionaires generally purchase pickups for cash and often second hand. The most popular, as I recall, was a 2 yr old Ford F-150. My grandfather was a self-made millionaire yet he always drove a pickup. His children were appalled. So in 1962 they bought him a brand new Cadillac limousine with a built-in TV in the back seat. He tried to play along, he bought his ranch hand a chauffer’s cap and jacket and had him take us grandkids to / from school but our “chauffer” never wore shoes. Then he gave up and started carrying bales of hay in the Limos trunk to feed the livestock. Eventually he gave the limo to my mother because she had the most kids and he went back to his truck.
    It’s been my general experience that a new / flashy auto is a sure sign of a large debt load.

  20. I’m excited! MrsAtoz seems amicable to cutting the “cable” cord. All her favorites are on SlingTV. We have the biz pay for our 4-pack Netflix, and we have Amazon Prime. I torrent 99% of what I watch. I have “SciFi Friday” and binge watch as much as possible. I’ve been doing this since I got my first 30# VCR back in the day. Remember the top loaders. The PX had a shit-load of them when they came out.

    I wonder if Cox Cable will penalize us when I bring back the cable boxes and drop TV. I wonder if I have to have basic cable?

  21. Let the guns wars begin!
    I just traded up my carry gun. Gave my Bersa Thunder .380 to my Granddaughter and picked up a M&P 9c yesterday. Now I have to stock up on 9mm ammo.
    I have a S&W Bodyguard .38 in my glove box too.

  22. “es, libertarians and particularly Libertarians love to argue how many angels can fit on the head of a pin. ”

    Answer: All of them!

    The ability to dance on the head of a pin with all the others is the defining characteristic of angels.

  23. “I just traded up my carry gun. Gave my Bersa Thunder .380 to my Granddaughter and picked up a M&P 9c yesterday.”

    You have firearms in your possession? You must be the luckiest guy who posts here. All of the rest of us have lost any firearms we once had to watery graves. The only thing I have left is a BB gun, and it’s broken.

  24. Good point. My rifles & shotguns all fell off the Mississippi hw 55 bridge a while back. It would be sad if my pistols suffered the same fate.

  25. @nick

    why don’t you post that long screed on comms as an article?

  26. Generous, they are ! $12/hour really shows what is going on in the IT industry.

    About six months after I left Death Star Telephone, I received a call from a contractor house in Portland, acting on behalf of the IBM Linux “Center of Excellence” located in the city. They proposed $10/hr to support the Linux NetClient VPN, a piece of software that *I wrote*.

    I said, “Do they know I wrote the program.”

    “They know. That’s why we are calling you.”

    In actuality, we have found that the testers should not be coders. That allows the tester to be more critical and supportive of the users.

    My only professional work in the last seven years was as (my guess — nothing official) the designated developer to pass the urine tests and DoD secruity clearances at CoCo Communications in Seattle (now Unium Wifi). Unable to come up with anything better for me to do and not wanting to just pay me nearly $100k/year to produce clean pee on demand, they settled on testing since the previous tester had been promoted to Test Manager and he needed someone to manage.

    It turned out that the “Test Manager” had no idea as to where to start with properly testing the product, a Quagga-based router protocol similar to OSPF. He was hired because he could do the DoD paperwork, having learned the processes at Boeing. I quit within a week; their DoD pivot blew up last year and Unium now has a deal with Google Fiber.

    I’ve actually seen worse approaches to Testing, but, at Death Star Telephone, the VPN client was pretty thoroughly tested by pros who only did that their entire career. That probably explains why the product is still out there, much to the chagrin of DST management who would prefer it went away.

  27. “why don’t you post that long screed on comms as an article?”

    l could do, and almost did when I saw how long it was. It’s a lot of repeats though, but maybe useful to all be in one place.

    n

  28. I’m excited! MrsAtoz seems amicable to cutting the “cable” cord. All her favorites are on SlingTV. We have the biz pay for our 4-pack Netflix, and we have Amazon Prime. I torrent 99% of what I watch. I have “SciFi Friday” and binge watch as much as possible. I’ve been doing this since I got my first 30# VCR back in the day. Remember the top loaders. The PX had a shit-load of them when they came out.

    Check if a MeTV broadcast affiliate is in your area. They make a serious effort on “Sci Fi Saturday” — “Star Trek”, “Wonder Woman”, various Irwin Allen classics — and recently began running “Coming Soon” ads for the old “Battlestar Galactica”.

  29. Ok, cleaned it up and posted it as an article. I’m sure I missed a they’re their there somewhere….

    n

  30. And rereading it, it still misses the most basic info, what can you do and why would you do it??

    perhaps more later. Gotta birthday cake to pick up, and a school play to see…

    n

  31. I have a S&W Bodyguard .38 in my glove box too.

    I would like to have a dozen of those also. They fit my palm as opposed to the Ruger LCR guns. Academy occasionally gets one in for $499 but they buy the laser variant which is heavy. And, they are only five rounds.
    https://www.smith-wesson.com/firearms/mp-bodyguard-38-crimson-trace

    I carry my bulldog .44 special and a Ruger rifle in my truck. Oh wait, I did before I lost them on the Brazos river.

  32. Give me a Glock or give me Death!

    Mitch Rapp says that the only bad thing about a Glock is that they are impossible to rack silently. And, silence counts in bad times.

  33. What is a 4-pack Netflix ?

    Four instances at once. All our TV’s at the house and condo either have a Netflix app or streamer with an app. Or iPad, PC/Mac/, etc. so you can watch on four devices at once.

  34. Hmm, that implies carrying on an empty, which is not recommended.

    Yup, and in the article you posted earlier, the correspondent makes that imperative as most quality semi-autos won’t fire unless the trigger is actually pulled. Important to have a holster that protects the trigger.

  35. OFD wrote:

    “And once again, dissidents are metaphorically excommunicated.”

    I just read that the bishop who condemed Joan of Arc was posthumously excommunicated. Does that mean he was shifted from heaven to hell at that time or did he go straight there?

  36. Now, this is science ! And a infomercial for Gorilla Glass. Might be good for munchkins.

    Thanks, Mr. Lynn, I watched both episodes. I just watched a vid on one of the geek sites on the Prince Rupert Drop. He shoots one with a 22 Mag and .380 and it survives. The MBusters explained how that works and why Gorilla Glass is so strong.

  37. I read the Texas House passed the Sanctuary City ban even though the Dumbocrats cried at the mic begging for mercy. Looking for land in Tejas stat for second and final retreat.

  38. I read the Texas House passed the Sanctuary City ban even though the Dumbocrats cried at the mic begging for mercy. Looking for land in Tejas stat for second and final retreat.

    A prog federal judge has just canceled photo id cards required for all elections in Texas. We will be back to the illegals voting in no time at all and the house / senate / gov / lt gov will flip back to dumbocrats in no time at all. A dirty little secret in Texas is that 20% ? 30% ? 40 % ? of the inhabitants are not citizens and cannot vote.
    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2017/04/11/federal_judge_rules_texas_voter_id_law_intentionally_discriminates_against.html

    On the other foot, we may get higher voting percentages of the population this way.

  39. A prog federal judge has just canceled photo id cards required for all elections in Texas. We will be back to the illegals voting in no time at all and the house / senate / gov / lt gov will flip back to dumbocrats in no time at all. A dirty little secret in Texas is that 20% ? 30% ? 40 % ? of the inhabitants are not citizens and cannot vote.

    Even with ID, the election was closer than I expected.

    I don’t think Greg Abbott is going anywhere next year, and either Castro brother running for Senate will be more of a train wreck than Cankles ’16. Again, the offspring of the co-founder of La Raza do not sprechen ze Espanol while Senator Cruz is fluent and posesses at least 50 more IQ points than the brothers combined.

    Gotta worry about the House, now, however.

    I may get my Tetanus updated and head downtown to see Cory Doctorow in two weeks. Still, Bookpeople. Shudder.

    http://www.bookpeople.com/event/cory-doctorow-walkaway

    He must have a signing in your area of Texas, Lynn.

    I saw Neal Stephenson in Portland before he went SJW with the last book. It was a good show with a surprisingly non-prog audience, and Stephenson seemed genuinely happy to sign my first edition of “Cryptonomicon”, the only copy he saw that night IIRC.

  40. I’ve got 3 full sets of his work, all signed firsts. I’ve got a special limited edition of the Baroque cycle too, in boxes and jackets, also signed. (exception is the new one, only one of those and not signed, although a first.) I used to live near one of the best independent bookstores in socal, and signed firsts were the same price as regular. So I have a large collection of modern signed firsts in SciFi… Gonna sell a bunch of them too, cuz they’re too lefty.

    n

  41. I’ve got 3 full sets of his work, all signed firsts.

    I bought “Cryptonomicon” Day One. Carted it all over the West Coast that Summer, including Java One at the height of the tech wreck — 30,000 in attendance! Moved the book across the country (Vantucky), picked up the signature in Portland, and moved it halfway back (Austin) making our escape from the Northwest.

    The book isn’t in “mint” shape, but it is first printing and valuable to me because it has been just about everywhere I’ve been where a lot of my books went to the used book store, Amazon resell, or recycle bin just to pare down the mass of material we had to move.

    I try not to look at my Amazon resell list. God it is depressing.

    Gonna sell a bunch of them too, cuz they’re too lefty.

    I separate the artist from the politics. “Seveneves” was prog SJW propoganda, but I’d still buy Stephenson. The job at Blue Origin isn’t forever, and I understand he had to shill for the boss.

  42. Oh, I can usually separate them, I like wen spencer and lynn’s cousin seanan.

    I went thru a period where there was only sjw crap and so that’s what I bought. Now I want some shelf space back for my growing classics collection so the sjw crap has to go. Since it’s signed firsts, it should move.

    n

  43. ” Does that mean he was shifted from heaven to hell at that time or did he go straight there?”

    I have no clue. You’d have to ask him.

    WRT separating artists from their politics, and personal lives and behavior; probably a good idea to do so. But lefties are physiologically incapable of doing that.

    Vets group was nearly a full house today; my fellow door gunner is back from Floriduh; one of our Sandbox vets showed up and is doing pretty well, considering how effed up he was at the beginning; my fellow Laotian adventurer (and late 1950s paratrooper) came, despite losing his wife a couple of weeks ago; our other effed-up Army Airborne lifer vet surprised us with his ability to exactly mimic big-name popular singers; and the conversation over 90 minutes was pretty much taken up by the former Army door gunner back from Floriduh, who brought his gf to the facility, but of course she can’t come into the group; and the other airborne guy. We’ve lost two former members of the group recently and it was good to see most everybody there today who’s still above ground.

    What did I do to prep today? Better question is did I do anything at all today? Not really; gonna have to hit it hard starting tomorrow AM. My later MD appointment after group got screwed up and re-scheduled for next Tuesday afternoon. I nodded off in the living room recliner for an hour, apparently; last week I fell asleep at this computer with my jacket and hat on for three hours. More signs of rapidly deteriorating decrepitude and senility.

    Wifey should be back from Nuevo Aztlan tomorrow night and I hope I’m in somewhat better shape by then. What a wuss.

  44. Could be sugar crash if you are eating a bunch of carbs. I used to fall asleep about 20 minutes after eating. Cut out the carbs and that got better.

    or maybe you are just tired.

    n

  45. I went thru a period where there was only sjw crap and so that’s what I bought. Now I want some shelf space back for my growing classics collection so the sjw crap has to go. Since it’s signed firsts, it should move.

    I’ve got four 72 inch by 36 inch bookshelves with the books double stacked (front and back) in the new game room. I’ve been reading Jack Reacher books lately and have decided to read the Mitch Rapp books now after listening to one last week. Those kind of books are fairly quick reads for me. I have two more shelves (four rows) open and then I have to make some RUTHLESS decisions. When we moved in 2013, I was fairly RUTHLESS and got rid of 30 or 40 books then so, I can do it again !

    I also have a 72 inch by 30 inch bookshelf in our bedroom that I use for my SBR (strategic book reserve). I’ve got it double stacked in depth and height both with about 500 books in it. Maybe 600, who counts nowadays ?

  46. [snip] All of the rest of us have lost any firearms we once had to watery graves [snip]

    Not me, I sold my piece when the Feds let my nephew out early. There was a halfway decent chance that he was going to wind up staying with me, and the US Marshalls told my older sister (his mom) & I that the presence of a firearm where he was domiciled would be cause enough to send him back. So my nice S&W wheelgun sold for a decent price, and right now I can’t really afford a replacement.

    One of the reasons I can’t find a replacement is my continuing trouble finding employment. No Top Secret clearance, and my skills are out of date. One ad I saw recently asked for several of the bleeding edge languages / tools, and the starting pay was about what I would have drawn fresh out of school 30 years ago. Ouch.

  47. “…or maybe you are just tired.”

    Most likely. I went ahead and did a chit-load of outside yard work the other day, while saddled with this head cold, the meds, and back issues. I hate sitting around while chores pile up, so eventually the tired old carcass says “fuck you” to me and shuts itself down.

    Wife just called and is also hacking her lungs out, thanks to having to yak all day for three days plus a sandstorm out there. So this will sound like an old TB ward by Saturday; she’s just gonna stay at her mom’s tomorrow night after getting in around 10 PM. And wants me to come out with her next time she goes to NM and El Paso, which I might just do for the novelty of it, though I have spent time in east Texas and briefly in AZ and in southern Kalifornia on the edge of the Mojave.

    “…my continuing trouble finding employment. No Top Secret clearance, and my skills are out of date. One ad I saw recently asked for several of the bleeding edge languages / tools, and the starting pay was about what I would have drawn fresh out of school 30 years ago. Ouch.”

    Yeah, I feel yer pain, hermano. Same deal here; I’ve had clearances in the past but they’re now defunct, of course, and my own skillz, such as they were, are also now outta date and mostly forgotten. If you ain’t doing it full-time it’s damned easy to forget. And yup, the IT jobs I’ve seen posted online and in my emails and in the classifieds, all want the moon for the same shit pay we got decades ago. Multiple languages and operating systems and biz skool knowledge and be kind of a hippie/hipster, too, and preferably way under the age of forty or so.

    Pinged the recruiter yesterday about the Fed contractor job and he said he’d ping the USCIS/Homeland Security and try to find out WTF. Background check since last October… And I almost don’t even care and don’t really want the job; just doing due diligence for family’s benefit and we sure could use the income again, but damn, I’d be right back in that rat race every day, 40-60 hours a week, on-call with a pager, putting out fires constantly (yeah, it’s a Winblows environment, and that’s what you spend the bulk of yer time doing, for office lusers).

    And I’d be a sub-sub-sub-contractor making about the same pay I made when I got bounced outta Big Blue four years ago. Almost seems like the game ain’t worth the candle to light it, amirite?

  48. ”’” Does that mean he was shifted from heaven to hell at that time or did he go straight there?”

    I have no clue. You’d have to ask him.”’

    Or Him ?

    Sorry, not a reference I’d usually make; just pickin’ on OFD.

  49. I was just rattling OFD’s chain about his belief that guys in Rome in white nighties purporting to make these decisions when it is God who judges.

  50. “…Sorry, not a reference I’d usually make; just pickin’ on OFD.”

    I was referring to asking the bishop, not Him above.

    “I was just rattling OFD’s chain about his belief that guys in Rome in white nighties purporting to make these decisions when it is God who judges.”

    That is correct, but He’s also delegated a lot of these “decisions” to His priests. They screw up, just like other human beans. And they’ll have to answer for it.

  51. OFD:

    “Also is there anything that will help me knock out this head cold, which has now, of course, migrated to my chest. ”

    Short of antibiotics, this is far and away the best stuff I have found so far for sinus problems/head/chest colds, to which I am prone. The ingredients are available OTC from places that sell essential oils / aromatherapy oils, or on ebay.

    Tincture of benzoin, 30 grams
    Eucalyptus tincture, 30 grams
    Balsam of Peru 0.5 gram
    Gomenol (Niaouli oil), 1 gram

    The recipe was originally recommended to me by a wise old ENT doctor as an alternative to Amoxicillin. Using an eyedropper, you add a squirt of the mixture to boiling water in a basin, and inhale the steam under a towel. Do it at least morning and evening, and more often if you can bear the heat.

  52. I have to prepare for a professional conversation in which I need to demonstrate somewhat more than a passing acquaintance with current “information security” issues.

    There were a couple of interesting links posted here recently, like strategypage.com and securitytoday.com

    Could anybody recommend other relevant reading? Thanks!

  53. @Denis: I don’t have any specific links, but depending on context consider mentioning the massive problems with IoT security.

  54. Promises, promises…

    https://refugeeresettlementwatch.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/trump-has-admitted-12218-refugees-since-inauguration-day-1472-syrians-1359-somalis/

    Looks like biz as usual on the refugee front and jingo military posturing and adventurism overseas.

    Recall that Trump declared an immediate halt to immigration from, inter alia, Syria and Somalia. This was blocked by a federal judge, as was Trump’s second attempt. Can’t fault Trump for those Obama appointees’ actions, though you can blame him for not ignoring the berobed tyrants or at least taking it to the Supreme Court the day after Gorsuch was sworn in.

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