Saturday, 7 October 2017

09:24 – It was 60.9F (16C) when I took Colin out at 0630, overcast. We’re supposed to start seeing the effects of the hurricane late this afternoon or this evening, with heavy rains and wind tomorrow and Monday.


A couple people emailed me about the bump-fire stocks. They’d attempted to order one before any new regulations come into effect, and found that there are none to be had. Again, I wouldn’t worry about it.

First, anyone can produce a very high rate of fire with an AR-15 simply by pulling the trigger as quickly as possible. It may not be up to the 800 or 900 RPM cyclic rate of the bump stock, but it’ll be closer to full auto than what most people would expect. Back in the 70’s, I tried this and had someone use a stopwatch to time how long it took me to empty a 30-round magazine. About 4.5 seconds, which meant I was firing about 400 RPM. That’s roughly what an M3 Grease Gun SMG does.

Second, back before bump stocks were introduced, several vendors sold modified triggers for AR-15’s. These flick triggers were designed to allow you to fire rounds as fast as you could vibrate your finger on the trigger. I assume they’re still available, but I have no interest in those, either.


Yesterday morning, Barbara suggested we repackage the 50-pound sack of flour that was sitting in the laundry room. So we transferred the flour into 19 of the 1.75-liter Tropicana Orange Juice bottles, at an average of 2 pounds, 10.1 ounces per bottle. (Ranging from 2’8.9″ in the lightest to 2’14.1″ in the heaviest.) We’ll add oxygen absorbers, label them, and haul them downstairs today.

That 50 pounds of flour totals 83,160 calories (1,663 calories/lb), or about one person-month’s worth of raw calories, assuming 2,750+ calories per day. Looked at another way, it’s sufficient for 25 two-loaf batches of bread dough, 50 pancake meals for four people, or (with 60 pounds of cornmeal) about 180 batches of cornbread.

Nor will we worry about shelf-life. In heavy PET bottles with oxygen absorbers, it’ll stay good for a long, long time. LDS rates their white flour at 10 years shelf life, and they’re conservative. I’ve mentioned before that back in the 70’s I ate bread made from white flour that had been stored in canning jars for 25 years or so. The bread tasted normal. The raw flour had a tannish cast and caked badly, but it had no unusual odor, and merely sifting it eliminated the caking.


Barbara also mentioned that she wanted to go through our stock of LTS canned goods to look for pop-top cans. She decided independently that they aren’t nearly as good for LTS as standard cans that require a can opener, and she’s right. The integrity of the can is paramount for LTS, and pop-top cans have been scored for easy opening. That calls into question the long-term integrity of the can, as far as we’re concerned.

So Barbara wants to locate all of the pop-top cans and move them from the LTS food room downstairs to the upstairs pantry. We’ll use them, assuming they pass the sniff test, but we’ll avoid buying anything else in the pop-top cans.

84 thoughts on “Saturday, 7 October 2017”

  1. How long would you give a pop top? I have 30 or so cans of soup and baked beans that must be four years old.

  2. Miles_Teg, I’ve eaten from pop-top cans which were older than that, just a couple months ago. Tasted fine. (Or as “fine” as canned soup ever is.)

  3. Learning some new things this am….

    From my FEMA brief:

    Hurricane Update – Caribbean
    Current Situation
    Life safety and life sustainment efforts in PR and the USVI are
    ongoing.
    • Population Impacts
    o PR: Shelters: 116; Population: 7,462 (-759); Disaster
    Assistance Registrations: 29,765;
    o USVI: Shelters: five; Population: 344 (-27); Disaster
    Assistance Registrations: 7,610
    • Communications
    o PR: 15.4% cell service restored, covering 49% of the
    population (1 carrier)
    o USVI: 43% cell service restored; St. Thomas: 53% cell
    service restored; St.John: No cell sites operational; St.
    Croix: 37% cell service restored
    • Power Outages / Restoration
    o PR: 10.7% with electricity; Generators: Completed 179
    of 290 requested generator pre-installation inspections;
    35 installed; 242 are on hand; 343 en route; additional
    249th Engineering Battalion personnel scheduled to
    arrive October 12
    o USVI: Customers on the power grid: St. Thomas 19%,
    St. John 0%; St. Croix 1%; Generators: 41 installed; 6
    de-installed; 46 available on island; 41 en route
    • Health & Medical
    o PR: 66 of 67 hospitals open, four of seven regional
    pediatric centers open; All dialysis centers operational,
    One Federal Medical Station (FMS) operational and four
    FMS in staging; PR Department Of Health completed
    nursing home assessments on October 6; compiling
    results; site survey for DoD Combat Support Hospital
    (CSH) in central PR conducted on October 6; additional
    CSH expected to arrive in PR by October 9 and be
    operational middle of next week
    o USVI: 5 health care centers are operational, 2 are
    closed, and 3 provide limited service; 117 dialysis
    patients remain in St. Croix, where there are 2 dialysis
    providers; other patients previously evacuated; 575th
    Area Support Medical Company expected to fully arrive in
    St. Croix on October

    Note that the islands are still without services, even this much later.

    Note the decrease in shelter population in PR, despite the news reports, people gotta be living somewhere if not the shelter. COMMs are still down. Long time to get gennies in theater and set up, on all the islands.

    n

  4. I noticed something I hadn’t seen before- a reference to Federal Medical Stations being set up in PR. I know about MMU (like a MASH unit), but not the FMS. So–

    “Somewhere between a temporary shelter and temporary hospital, a Federal Medical Station is a non-emergency medical center set up during a natural disaster to care for displaced persons with special health needs—including those with chronic health conditions, limited mobility, or common mental health issues—that cannot be met in a shelter for the general population during an incident.

    The modular and rapidly deployable reserve of beds, supplies, and medicines provides equipment to care for 50–250 people for three days before resupply is needed. Flexible and scalable, it can be tailored to meet the requirements of each incident and has the ability to increase local healthcare capabilities in mass casualty events or in response to potential public health threats.”

    Did not know we had these.

    And that led me to the NEXT item….

    n

  5. Along with the FMS and MMU, and the 12 Hour Push Packages, there is the CHEMPACK.

    “CHEMPACKs are containers of nerve agent antidotes placed in secure locations at local levels around the country to allow rapid response to a chemical incident. These medications treat the symptoms of nerve agent exposure and can be used even when the actual agent is unknown.

    Because these antidotes must be administered quickly, CDC’s CHEMPACK team maintains 1,960 containers strategically placed in more than 1,340 locations in the U.S. More than 90 percent of the United States. population is within one hour of a CHEMPACK location. Most are located in hospitals or fire stations selected by local authorities to support a rapid hazmat response and can be accessed quickly if hospitals or first responders need them.

    Read more about CDC’s CHEMPACK Program—The Stockpile that may protect you from a chemical attack.”

    I think an hour might be a bit too late……

    Interesting that it’s there though.

    n

    “emergency use of the 2 mg atropine auto-injector, manufactured by Rafa Laboratories, Ltd. On May 23, 2017, FDA amended the EUA to also permit the emergency use of pediatric strengths (i.e., 0.5 mg and 1 mg) of this atropine auto-injector. These products are included in CHEMPACK containers located across the United States. ‘

  6. “If a community experiences a large-scale public health incident in which the disease or agent is unknown, the first line of support from the stockpile is to send a 12-hour Push Package. Push packages contain a broad-range of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies. Contents are pre-packed and configured in transport-ready containers for rapid delivery anywhere in the United States within 12 hours of the federal decision to deploy. Each package contains 50 tons of emergency medical resources.

    The stockpile has multiple 12-hour push packages stored in strategically located warehouses throughout the country ready for deployment. Immediately shipping, or “pushing,” a variety of items to the affected state allows authorities to begin or sustain response efforts. All states have plans to receive and distribute push packages quickly to local jurisdictions. Each container is color-coded and numbered to allow those receiving the shipment to easily identify and organize the materials.”

    n

  7. And right from the horse’s mouth:

    http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/07/18/537257884/that-drug-expiration-date-may-be-more-myth-than-fact

    “It turns out that the FDA, the agency that helps set the dates, has long known the shelf life of some drugs can be extended, sometimes by years.

    In fact, the federal government has saved a fortune by doing this.

    At a goverment stockpile, drugs don’t expire as fast

    For decades, the federal government has stockpiled massive stashes of medication, antidotes and vaccines in secure locations throughout the country. The drugs are worth tens of billions of dollars and would provide a first line of defense in case of a large-scale emergency.

    Maintaining these stockpiles is expensive. The drugs have to be kept secure and at the proper humidity and temperature so they don’t degrade. Luckily, the country has rarely needed to tap into many of the drugs, but this means they often reach their expiration dates. Though the government requires pharmacies to throw away expired drugs, it doesn’t always follow these instructions itself. Instead, for more than 30 years, it has pulled some medicines and tested their quality.”

    “A 2006 study of 122 drugs tested by the program showed that two-thirds of the expired medications were stable every time a lot was tested. Each of them had their expiration dates extended, on average, by more than four years, according to research published in the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

    Some that failed to hold their potency include the common asthma inhalant albuterol, the topical rash spray diphenhydramine, and a local anesthetic made from lidocaine and epinephrine, the study said. But neither Cantrell nor Dr. Cathleen Clancy, associate medical director of National Capital Poison Center, a nonprofit organization affiliated with the George Washington University Medical Center, had heard of anyone being harmed by any expired drugs. Cantrell says there has been no recorded instance of such harm in medical literature.”

    n

  8. “In June 2015, a Costco warehouse in Potomac Mills, VA, partnered with Prince William Health District (Virginia Department of Health) to show how a private business can step up to help its community in an emergency.

    In this particular exercise, Costco regional pharmacy staff exercised a local plan to dispense medication – actually empty training bottles – to nearly 200 public volunteers as part of an open, or public, point of dispensing (POD). T

    he scenario was based on a large-scale anthrax attack that would require mass dispensing of antibiotics from the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). In an emergency where many people were exposed to anthrax, these antibiotics would help prevent people from becoming sick.”

    https://blogs.cdc.gov/publichealthmatters/2015/09/medicine-dispensing-exercise-held-at-virginia-costco/

    “Costco has partnered with public health to operate both closed PODs, which would serve its own employees and their families, and public PODs open to the larger community.”

    What’s YOUR employer doing to help you survive??

    n

  9. “How long would you give a pop top?”

    The issue isn’t that pop-top cans have shorter shelf lives than regular cans; it’s that pop-top cans are more likely to fail because the metal top has been heavily scored. If the can maintains integrity, a pop-top will last as long as a regular can.

    Re: Colin

    He still wears his training collar and will continue to do so for a long time. It works well, and he’s learning to obey verbal commands, but he still tests us and will regress quickly if/when he figures out that we can’t buzz him.

  10. We have an ‘anti bark’ collar on our little guy. Without it, he will bark for hours while we aren’t home to correct him.

    It’s pretty sophisticated in that it only responds to noise if there is vibration too (ie, it’s on him and he’s making the noise), and it allows him to bark or growl in warning, but not repeatedly or long.

    He KNOWS THE DIFFERENCE between having that collar on and not. If he’s barking all we have to do is ask “Do you want the collar?” and he’ll stop. We take it off, and leave it off, but eventually he gets barky again, and we have to put it back on for a while. He absolutely doesn’t get barky with the collar on.

    n

  11. “…We either take the hard fall now or later…”

    Well, I took mine, two outta three, over the last 48 hours up here.

    Thursday, I got back from the vets group down in Burlap and stopped to check the mail at the corner P.O. I dropped keys and stooped down to grab ’em and couldn’t get back up. Postmistress was taking down the flag and saw me and came running over and also another woman who’d just parked there. They pulled me to my feet, all 240 pounds, and I hobbled over to my cah. As I was getting in, I fell backwards out of it and onto the asphalt in a pretty awkward position. The earlier woman was still there and saw me, and with her daughter and the postmistress again, they managed to shove my worthless and decrepit old carcass back into the cah. And I went home.

    Yesterday we were up at O-Dark-Thirty for the two-hour drive down to the VA and chiropractor, who did some “flexion” of the spine and checked all my chit and gave me a couple of exercises to do several times daily for the next two weeks when I’ll go down and see him again. So I hobbled back out to the exit and sat on a bench to wait for wife to come get me. When I saw the cah approaching, I stood up and then immediately fell over backwards, smacking my noggin on the cement hard enough to bounce, and people nearby heard it bounce.

    A group gathered, nurses, a doc, two cops, and told me to stay down when I tried to get up. Long story short; they wheeled me in for a checkup involving the CAT-scan, pee test, blood test, lotsa questions, etc. (the clever rascals had earlier asked me tricky questions, like my name and where I was, which I got right, and then they asked me what year it was and I started to blurt “19….” and that was it.) Goes to show how fast seventeen years can just disappear, eh? (how I wish!)

    CAT-scan of the head was OK, a “no-brainer” according to the comedian moonlighting as a doc, and all other stuff was OK. I was apologizing for creating a big fuss over nuttin’ but a nurse told me they also had to check because it happened on VA property.

    I tried to get up for the all-day lab at the school early this AM and could not get off the bed or stand up. Tried again later w/negative results. I’m dropping that class for now and retaking it during the winter break or next semester. Will do whatever I have to for continuing the Monday night class, however, and will also take an online course for the duration of this semester. We have fall break next week so Monday I will be on the phone with my PCD and escalating this treatment regimen somehow or other.

    Options: get another epidural shot (with MRI) so that I can buy some time and at least function long enough for me to work the chiropractic and acupuncture and other woo-woo angles.

    Meanwhile, get an appointment with a neurologist and/or neurosurgeon in or out of the VA system by hook or by crook. I didn’t have much back pain this AM and infamously thought I was “all set” to go to class. It’s not the damn pain that much anymore; it’s the fucking paralysis. Which means a nerve or nerves are being choked off. So let’s find the choke point and fix it somehow.

    Other than all that depressing and frustrating shit, I’m otherwise OK and Mrs. OFD has been putting up with my decrepitude and senility again and carrying the load. Again. Which drives me batshit but I have to cope and use my little bag of psych tricks to get through it.

    It’s clouded up and gotten windy and we can see raindrops so maybe some showers coming our way, long overdue.

  12. Jeez, Dave, sympathies n stuff. Luckily, I’m here to give you lots of suggestions.

    1. Make sure to have an assistant or two on hand to help you up when you fall, or even to catch you before you fall. I suggest hot, young babes; if you have to have someone shadowing you all the time, the someone might as well be eye candy.

    2. If the problem is that your spinal nerve is being pinched, stop the pinching by removing your spine. A side benefit is that this will qualify you to be a government spokesperson, a CEO’s yes-man, or even a Republican politician.

    3. Always always always keep a charged phone with you, even in the shower. There are waterproof cases (I know, because my wife has one) or maybe putting it on the edge of the tub outside the curtain would be close enough. Some, maybe all, phones can be set up for easy emergency dialing. Do that.

    4. Arrange with someone — wife, neighbor, hot babe, anyone halfway reliable — to talk with you every few hours and to hit the panic button if you miss a call.

  13. Even if you don’t build near the Brazos River, it will come to you, “Unstoppable Brazos River”:
    http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/amp/Unstoppable-Brazos-River-takes-homes-roads-12252536.php

    “SIMONTON – Sharon Galavitz knew the moment she drove up to the house that she had to have it. Here, 40 miles west of Houston, she could hear the birds and see the stars. She could own a horse.”

    “She didn’t care that the Brazos River would take her home piece by piece — first the driveway, then the fence, then whole sections of her yard.”

    “”I loved the property,” said Galavitz, a longtime Realtor. “When it’s time for this place to go, it’ll just go.””

    The pictures are small but amazing.

  14. @OFD, please please take care ol’ warrior.

    I am lucky that my Wife retired and has no desire to go back to work. I do need almost constant watching. The kids’ offer some respite for her on the weekends. We are slowly making the home and property more and more accommodating for my feebilities as the budget allows.

    I know money is a challenge, yes for us too, but try and figure what provides the most safety and accommodation and work the list.

    We do what we can do and try to do better.

  15. Thanks much for the suggestions, guys; I esp. like Numbers 1 and 2 from my next-state neighbor and will get to work on those ASAP.

    I was lucky in that Mrs. OFD is home for three weeks, well, two more, anyway, to help me out with chit, as otherwise it’s rather dicey to say the least.

    “We are slowly making the home and property more and more accommodating for my feebilities as the budget allows.”

    Dad, I’m doing the paperwork for the VA to build the relevant mods in our house here, like a walk-in shower, high-rise toilet, railings on the stairwell, and new back steps/landing and railing off the back porch. They’ll allow up to around $7k for that stuff; have you looked into it yet? They want pics and estimates from three contractors, but that’s not too hard….

    There is chit on the iPhones for alert and emergency calling purposes which I will now set up accordingly, and allegedly a Guardian Alert device is enroute, along with more drugs (for BP, cholesterol, potassium, you know, all the important stuff).

    GG and wife want me to see a neurologist ASAP, brother wants me to see an orthopedic surgeon and get cut open, and wife also wants to sue the VA.

    I see some fun times ahead here. Monday will once again be Phone Day, I so adore spending lots and lots of time on the phone.

  16. Did not know we had these.

    It makes sense that we have prepared modular medical facilities ready to deploy in a crisis. According to my wife, part of the deal to keep a medical license in the US is that the doctors understand that they are subject to conscription for public health emergencies. I’ll take her word for it since she’s the one who signed the paperwork.

  17. “It makes sense that we have prepared modular medical facilities ready to deploy in a crisis”

    That’s what’s a bit boggling, that it makes so much sense. And it goes to what I’ve said before, the mgmt at FEMA and CDC may be PHBs, but the guys on the ground seem to be doing a pretty good job.

    Also, this is what pro-level prepping looks like.

    n

  18. Got a two-fer last night on the pest front.

    Two glue traps by the pancake mix, two not so dead rats stuck there this day…

    They squeal and cheep piteously and I’d prefer the traps simply killed them, but the snap traps don’t work… and the rats are eating my kids’ food.

    n

  19. Meanwhile, get an appointment with a neurologist and/or neurosurgeon in or out of the VA system by hook or by crook. I didn’t have much back pain this AM and infamously thought I was “all set” to go to class. It’s not the damn pain that much anymore; it’s the f****** paralysis. Which means a nerve or nerves are being choked off. So let’s find the choke point and fix it somehow.

    Dude, sorry to hear this. Hopefully the VA docs can help you. If not, demand that they send you outside the system to private neurologist. The squeaky wheel gets the grease !

    And do it quickly ! Spinal damage is hard to repair after a period of time. They just got more money for private docs. You are in an emergency situation !
    http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/04/19/524738537/trump-extends-troubled-va-program-that-pays-private-doctors

  20. Workin’ on it all, guys. Wife went over various options online and we discussed them all; more phone time for me on Monday. Need to strike while the iron’s hot and she’s at home to be cab driver and assistant. Although I can sit and drive A-OK; it’s getting to and from the cah that is a problem.

    No neurologists in the VA facilities up here, so they’d HAVE to send me outside for that, which they’ve done before with the PT and eyelid surgery. I hope to know more this next week. And any classes other than labs can be done remotely one way or another, I am led to believe, via the school. And there was only the one lab this semester and no others scheduled for a while. This one I gotta retake by next fall semester, though. Otherwise, the school thing is more or less on-track but could become questionable, as in, if I need surgery that will knock me out for months.

    The back pain was one thing but we didn’t see this one coming, not really. Prep FAIL.

    Next steps for now are arranging the house and my stuff so that I don’t have to stoop, kneel, or reach too far for it. Grocery shopping and getting the mail are now risky; do I risk falling and smacking my head again on cement or asphalt? Etc.

  21. Good-Bye, California

    Reality has been banned here; I have a feeling, nevertheless, that it will make a reappearance with a vengeance. I don’t want to be around these parts when that happens.

    So, we’re moving. Our house is full of boxes and bins. The dogs are sensing change, and acting nervous and suspicious. My back hurts from moving stuff around. Yes, we’re moving.

    We looked at a lot of places, and fortunately this country still has a lot of nice places with very good and welcoming people. In the end, however, we had to pick one and we decided on (drum roll) North Carolina!

    .
    .
    .

  22. @OFD, I have looked at and been in contact with the VA. However, they do not consider any of my conditions to be service related, the only thing, maybe, is my hearing. My lifetime with Polio and auto-immune disorders seems to put me in a “too bad but we can’t do anything about it” class.

    Be very very careful about any back surgeries. Any doctor says you will have no more problems is lying. There will be problems down the road caused by what they really only temporarily fixed.

    I had knee surgeries about 20-years ago, removed my old cartilage that looked like it had exploded and replace with pig cartilage. My doctor told me it would only last at best 10-years and probably could not be done again. It lasted a bit more than 5. He keeps up and keeps me informed with anything new that might work, but no fixes on the horizon.

    I cannot have my joints replaced. My immune system immediately attacks any insult to the bone. Even when I had my knee cartilage replaced it took a lot of anti-rejection drugs to keep my body from immediately dissolving the cartilage.

  23. I’m with Daddy-o on the back surgery. Once you start down that road, you walk it until you die. Try everything else first. You still got stuff to try…

    and it’s a bit ironic that as you finally come out of your self imposed exile and rejoin the world that your body rebels an wants to keep you at home. Don’t let it.

    n

  24. Annndddd, they’re done…..

    FEMA is tapped out. Every category of staff is red on their summary chart, except Urban Search and Rescue.

    “National
    IMATs*
    (0 Teams)
    East 1: Deployed
    East 2: Deployed
    West: Deployed

    Regional
    IMATs
    (0-3 Teams)
    Assigned: 13
    Available: 1
    PMC / NMC: 0
    Deployed: 12

    US&R
    (>66%)
    Assigned: 28
    Available: 23
    PMC / NMC: 5
    Deployed: 0

    MERS
    (≤33%)
    Assigned: 36
    Available: 6
    NMC: 0
    Deployed: 30

    FCO
    (≤1 Type I)
    Assigned: 38
    Available: 2
    PMC / NMC: 2
    Deployed: 34

    FDRC
    (1)
    Assigned: 14
    Available: 1
    PMC / NMC: 1
    Deployed: 12

    Total Workforce 11,173 |avail-2,128 19% |deployed- 7,241 |other- 1,804 “

  25. Mr. OFD, my buddy:

    Please take care of yourself by having a safety net of peeps you can call. I think you and the Mrs. need to consider how to add a bathroom downstairs. I know you don’t want to leave the house unless a pine box is delivered to the front door. If the legs stop working you won’t be able to use the stairs. I advise don’t use them now, except you gotta use the potty. I’m praying the VA finds something fixable with your back. You’ve got a lot of years left. Unless your mind goes like Mr. Ray’s in the next couple of years. Then you’ll be in an old shit’s home anyway.

  26. “Any doctor says you will have no more problems is lying. There will be problems down the road caused by what they really only temporarily fixed.”

    They’ve been mostly upfront about various issues presently and in the future after whatever is done, is done. I will run my suggestion by my PCD, i.e., gimme that epidural of whatever (cortisone, steroidal whatever, whatever) so I can buy enough time to work the woo-woo stuff and exercises, etc., etc. BUT, I also wanna see a neurologist.

    Much arguing going on now with wife and Princess. Again. What was that someone said about freshman high skool grrls? What about a 25-year-old college senior??? A half-hour phone call so far, and counting. Typical.

  27. I think you and the Mrs. need to consider how to add a bathroom downstairs. I know you don’t want to leave the house unless a pine box is delivered to the front door. If the legs stop working you won’t be able to use the stairs. I advise don’t use them now, except you gotta use the potty. I’m praying the VA finds something fixable with your back. You’ve got a lot of years left. Unless your mind goes like Mr. Ray’s in the next couple of years.

    Amazon to the rescue !
    https://www.amazon.com/Drive-Medical-Folding-Bedside-Commode/dp/B001HP7AQE/

    One day, this might look better than climbing those stairs. Of course, you can always pee off the back porch.

  28. “You’ve got a lot of years left. Unless your mind goes like Mr. Ray’s in the next couple of years.”

    I have zero idea of how many years I’ve got left, probably not many, at this rate. And my mind has long gone, and much, much worse than Mr. Ray’s. At least he knows what the most annoying creature on the planet is. I woulda guessed it, but also woulda expanded the age range in both directions by about ten years.

    And thanks oh so much for that AMZ link, Mr. Lynn! We are currently making the upstairs my HQ for now (maybe for weeks or months, who knows?) Which gives us the two bedrooms, office, bathroom, and attic. Wife can bring me food from the kitchen and deal with the animals and plants. And grocery shopping and laundry, etc., etc. I’ll do whatever I can up here; washer-dryer research so far, and I can fold laundry, at least. Chitloads of reading material, Netflix, music, etc., etc.

  29. “Roger that!”

    I was hopin’ to be more like Slim; climb mountains and play doubles tennis. It don’t look good.

    Hey, I can still do semi-long-range rifle overwatch on the village here.

  30. One day, this might look better than climbing those stairs. Of course, you can always pee off the back porch.

    Alas, when you fall backward like you’ve been doing lately, you’ll give yourself the ol’ tRump Dossier!

    Covfefe 2020!

  31. “you’ll give yourself the ol’ tRump Dossier!”

    and then you’ll be golden!

    ba-dum-bum! I’ll be here all week, don’t forget to tip your waitress……

    n

  32. Now, this is just a rumor I heard going around, but what I heard is that ol’ Dave was a witness to some of ol’ Hillary Bitch Clinton’s illegal goings-on. The only reason he’s still alive is that he lives up in Midgetville, Vermont, and no self-respecting competent assassin wants to go up amongst the snow and maple trees and moose and ice weasels, so the only assassins the Clinton machine was able to contract were half-trained apprentices. That’s why ol’ Dave is declining, they keep shooting and poisoning and what-not, but do half-assed jobs of it.

  33. http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2017/10/04/las-vegas-shooting/

    He says most of the same stuff I already told wife and the other vets in my group.

    You do not get that number of casualties with a few semi-auto rifles from a thousand yards away in that amount of time. You gotta assume he misses most of the time for one thing. That would mean several hundred loaded mags that he just keeps slapping into them rifles, continuously. STILL wouldn’t nail that many people in that time from that distance.

    So basic laws of physics rule out the Lone Shooter Bullshit.

    This story stinks like a freighter-load of rotting fish and manure.

  34. Today started sunny and clear. Then it clouded over with no wind and the humidity is wicked.

    The driveway announcer installation proceeds slowly. Hey, it’s 50 feet of wire to bury. I found a suitable oak tree to mount the transmitter. Works well there. Burying the wire to the sensor is not a lot of fun. Sorta carve a groove with the side of a hoe… then use a skinny shovel (sharp shooter) to stab and twist the dirt loose. Then squat along with a hand trowel to get the dirt out of the trench as I lay the wire. Not much of a trench… 3 or 4 inches deep.

    It’s quite possible I could have installed the transmitter next to the gate opener control box. But, no, I’m gonna go stealth… 🙂 I’d still have to bury the wire and sensor… Stealth it is.

    Anyway, my new doorbell seems to work quite well.

    Sore? Me? Yeah. What the hell happened between being 55 and now 60 at the end of this month? Anyway, I have about 6 feet more wire to bury. Tomorrow.

    The system works laying on the ground with the sensitivity turned most of the way down. The neighbors came over for beers and their 4-wheeler thing set it off coming in and out.

    So, my doorbell plan is going to work.

    If the zombies are smart enough to open the gate and are on vehicles, I’m all set.

    Mr OFD, maybe get your ears checked. ???

    Thank y’all for the battery info. Yeah, I know the cells are good for 10 years in storage, the announcer says about a year of use.

  35. it’s that pop-top cans are more likely to fail because the metal top has been heavily scored.

    I would suspect that one factor would be flexing caused by heating and cooling if exposed to fluctuating temperatures. That could weaken the metal around the scoring.

  36. Damaged knee cartilage can cause balance issues as the brain is not getting correct feedback from the knees. This was offered to me personally as a possible cause when I had some issues with balance.

    In OFD’s case, from what he’s shared, it’s much more likely to be actual weakness in the leg and back caused by a pinched nerve, than something going wrong in his head. Probably wouldn’t hurt to rule out a head issue, even something like sinus inflammation can pressure your ears and mess up your balance.

    Hopefully they’ll find a root cause and address that, in the mean time, keep trying things and maybe something will help.

    n

  37. “What the hell happened between being 55 and now 60 at the end of this month?”

    You whippersnappers make me laff. Wait’ll ya get to between 60-65. But that can’t be right, either. Mr. Slim climbs mountains and plays doubles tennis and he’s 105.

    Or maybe that was the temp today in southern Kalifornia.

    OFD’s ears are fine and dandy, maybe a little wax buildup. Balance is off thanks to nerves not transmitting very often anymore to the legs, esp. the right leg. Right leg balance also effed up thanks to hammer-toe (second toe) and big toe kinda slanted off next to it and looking DEFORMED, so kinda useless for balance. You find out how much that big toe on your foot does when you lose it. Or the use of it.

    Weakness in leg/s and now right arm/shoulder due to pinched nerve in lumbar region, accordingly to several parties in the med profession. CAT-scan of head was A-OK, ditto my neck. (they’d had me in a cervical collar, too). I’ve been hit in the head pretty good a few times in the past with no apparent damage from any of those incidents. The brain is another story and I’ve told bits of it here before. Fried by Lysergic acid diethylamide quite a few times, tons of pot, and soaked in rivers and oceans of booze, plus the PTSD, it is a scientific wonder to behold. Goes to show how much it can take and still string together the language from time to time and learn new chit.

    Naw, the back pain sucks, and the area back there is stiff and sore, but it’s losing the legs that bothers me just a tad. What’s the point of being nearly six and a half feet tall if you’re cut off at the waist? Or pelvis, actually.

    “That’s why ol’ Dave is declining, they keep shooting and poisoning and what-not, but do half-assed jobs of it.”

    As I keep saying, a little girl could kick my ass now. They just need to send up a squad of Brownies or Girl Scouts. (watch out for the razor wire, grrls, and the various other little doodads and gizmos and gimcracks strewn around the perimeters…)

  38. Unless your mind goes like Mr. Ray’s in the next couple of years.

    I figure I have got about 13-14 years before the brain goes soft. Early 80’s has been the target for the rest of the family whose brain’s rotted.

    Of course there are those that would argue, and reasonably so, that brain rot has already started and I just don’t know it.

    What’s the point of being nearly six and a half feet tall if you’re cut off at the waist?

    You could wear a white coat and shout “De Plane, De Plane”.

  39. Good idea, Mr. Ray. Now I just gotta cut my nice long auburn hair and get a dyed black bowl job and penci-thin mustache and stuff apples in my cheeks or something. I can use FlightRadar24 on my phone to ID the aircraft overhead, too. Most of the time.

    New upstairs apartment shaping up already; wife cleaned the laundry room area (we gotta get new machines ASAP) and is working on the hallway and bedroom. Also got me a nice tuner salad sammich with some hot little red spuds and tomatoes from our gahden. Washing it all down wid cranberry juice, too.

    Life is grand.

  40. Right leg balance also effed up thanks to hammer-toe (second toe)

    Bro, me too ! My real life bro walked up to me about ten years ago and said, “you have a hammer toe on your right foot”. Me, “so what , the two permanently broken toes 4 and 5 bother me a whole lot more.”

  41. Take care, OFD. I think your southern correspondent is in the chute only a little way behind you. I envy the resident Cowboy, and also a neighbour of my parents 30 years ago who was strutting around the neighbourhood well into her nineties.

    Who was arguing with Princess? You or Mrs OFD? Will she be finished by Christmas?

  42. “Mr. Slim climbs mountains and plays doubles tennis and he’s 105.”

    Well, I don’t really climb mountains, but I still tent camp up in the Sierra Nevadas each summer and yes to the tennis. Actually, only 78 but have the onset of mild forgetfulness.

    Best wishes for recovery for OFD!

  43. Regarding appliances, there is talk that tRump wants a 220% tariff on Samsung and LG.

    That being said, @OFD I (actually my Wife) highly recommend the LG washer and dryer line. My Wife says the are excellent and there is a noticeable decrease in our electric bill. Do not pay the overpriced premium for stainless steel, it adds nothing to the efficiency of the machines.

    This is the washing machine we got:
    http://www.lg.com/us/washers/lg-WM5000HWA-front-load-washer

    This is the dryer we got:
    http://www.lg.com/us/dryers/lg-DLEX5000W-electric-dryer

    We had tried a Speed Queen set and initially liked it, but the washer uses tremendous amounts of water and the dryer uses a lot of electricity. The capacities are very small and could not do our queen sized quilts. Fortunately we were able to return them.

  44. Will she be finished by Christmas?

    I was to guess, I’d guess the answer would be No.

  45. Cynic.

    In the words of a wise man*, cynicism is the best predictor of events.

    * That would be I.

  46. How ’bout getting one of those little combo washer-dryers like they have in England? They hold only a tiny amount, don’t get clothes clean, and don’t get clothes dry, but they take up much less space than separate, full-size washers and dryers.

  47. I can second LG as quality washer/dryer. I have front loader washer at the house and top loader at the condo. I had to get a set of those “grabbers” for elderly/decrepit folks since MrsAtoz is too short to reach the bottom of the washer. lol!

  48. I had to get a set of those “grabbers” for elderly/decrepit folks since MrsAtoz is too short to reach the bottom of the washer.

    Ha. There’s a reason we have a front-loader, and that reason would be my 5-foot-tall wife.

  49. “I was to guess, I’d guess the answer would be No.”

    Christmas of what year? Yeah. Try 2018 now. She didn’t register for this fall, I discovered fairly recently; McGill allegedly wouldn’t do it because she was not an “active” student, which is hogwash, because she’s been up there for seven years now. So she’s doing the occasional harp gig and continuing to gallivant around New England and the Maritimes and hanging out with friends at her Montreal apartment that we pay for and having a grand old time at age 25 and turning 26 next June. Life is grand, indeed.

    No one else seems bothered, although it continues to inconvenience other people on several levels and is a monthly expense we could long since have done without.

  50. So she’s doing the occasional harp gig and continuing to gallivant around New England and the Maritimes and hanging out with friends at her Montreal apartment that we pay for and having a grand old time at age 25 and turning 26 next June. Life is grand, indeed.

    Uh, not good. Not good at all.

    It is incredibly tough to teach personal responsibility. And it seem like the majority of them millennials are lacking in this.

  51. It’s the Entitled Generation; she’s only seven years younger than her brother yet the difference is like unto night and day; he’s worked his ass off since he left high skool. She’s mostly skated, although I still hear occasionally how HARD she works up at McGill. But seemed/seems to be out and about every weekend, school break and holiday throughout and summers abroad and around the entire Northeast every year.

    At 25/26 I was working full-time on night shifts as a wave solder machine and printed circuit board fab guy at Data General and part-time as a small-town police officer, which more often than not, turned out to be full-time. Plus all the court appearances.

    Her brother has more than paid his dues in various low-paying shit jobs until he got into business analysis and intel in HIS late twenties.

  52. ” but the washer uses tremendous amounts of water and the dryer uses a lot of electricity.”

    yes, yes, yes, HELL yes. and it gets the clothes clean and dry in jig time…

    No more 3 hour sanitary cycle with the HE front loader. No more ‘just barely not wet’ from the hour long dryer cycle. CRISPY and dry.

    Love the Speed Queen. Can do 5 loads in the time ONE took.

    n

  53. @nick – the LG set we have does not perform in the poor manner you describe. In fact the LG does normal loads faster and spins them dryer in less time. The dryer dries faster with less wrinkling.

    The only down side is all the computers that they use and you can connect them to your smartphone, which we have not done.

  54. We’re looking at a Maytag paired electric washer and dryer at Home Depot up here; they’ll deliver free of charge, haul the old crap out for $15 a pop, and hook the muthas up for us. They even give ya a checklist to check for measurements, water shutoff, electric connection, etc. A grand for both, on-sale now.

    Another three-grand to do the rest of our ground-floor windows and shutters.

    Two more cords of firewood.

    And I gotta work on the application for the VA to do mods for me here, i.e., stairway railings, walk-in shower, high-rise can, and we’ll probably exhaust their grant for that and meanwhile do the back stairs off the porch ourselves, with landing and railing. Just as well even if I WASNT effed up, as we’re both in our mid-sixties now and there’s this substance called “ice” up here for a few months. Neither one of us needs to fracture bones or skulls here, and I gave it a shot this past Friday w/negative results.

  55. “She’s mostly skated, although I still hear occasionally how HARD she works up at McGill.”

    Quit ya whining. In five years she’ll have a well paid prestigous career as a harpist and will be devoting herself to your and Mrs OFD’d care.

  56. See, Miles_Teg, that’s where you’ve gone wrong: When you’re lying to someone, whether to scam them out of their hard-earned wealth or simply for the pleasure of trolling them, you need to keep the lies somewhat plausible.

    (Also, a mistake not related to implausible lies: I suspect the word is going to be harpy, not harpist. But maybe I’m just cynical.)

  57. I’ll believe it when I see it, but thanks for the boffo laffs. One or the other of them may end up kicking me down a flight of stairs, but IDGAF at this point. Also heard the nooz today oh boy, that she has a serious bf in the works. And I thought: this guy has no clue, does he. And then I thought: marriage!!! And someone else can pay the freight from now on. But I bet somehow we’ll still be paying until we croak.

  58. Also heard the nooz today oh boy, that she has a serious bf in the works. And I thought: this guy has no clue, does he. And then I thought: marriage!!! And someone else can pay the freight from now on. But I bet somehow we’ll still be paying until we croak.

    Does he have a job ?

  59. Yeah, he’s a bicycle mechanic, aged 32, in Moh-ree-all. They be serious an’ chit, monogamous, even. And she’ll have a double major degree in languages (around ten or so, fluently) and music, with harp gigs all over the place. I would think translator gigs, too, and in a huge city like Moh-ree-all.

    “You gotta pay for her wedding boyo… Good luck with that.”

    That’s old hat from generations gone by. We’d contribute but that’s about it, and I’d be HAPPY to contribute, too.

  60. OFD, ever see Terminator 2: Judgement Day?

    When Arnie gets sent back in time to save the world he’s naked, so he walks into a bar and steals a bikie’s clothes. That bike is a dead ringer for you… 🙂

  61. Yup, saw that flick and the vid shorts like that one. My hair is dark auburn and longer, and I have hazel/green eyes and am bigger than that dude. I also don’t look quite as ‘rode hard and put away wet’ yet, but after this next round of chit with my back and legs may yet get there.

  62. The only way Mr Bike Mechanic could be more ideal would be if he had lots of school loans for a worthless degree, which he can’t make payments on from his bike mech salary.

    No, wait! He could have a family history of psychosis, ready to rear its head any day now, rendering him unfit to work. OFD and his wife can be completely supporting freeloader daughter and woeful unfortunate husband forever!

    I could go on, like by suggesting that both bride and groom will decide they need gender reassignment surgery. Or that they’ll both join the cult of mohammadism to show that they’re not haters taken in by all the hatey-hate of the lying liars who lie about the religion of acid attacks. Or all of the above!

  63. I don’t have much intel on Mr. BM yet, so no idea of his education, financial status or political beliefs. And it may be going nowhere, but we’ll see.

  64. Hmmph. Dave was able to reply to my snark, which means I failed at pushing him into an incoherent rage.

    Next time for sure!

  65. The incoherent rage thing is old Dave. The new Dave doesn’t have those anymore. It used to be kinda scary because I’d lose my ability to speak, thus the incoherence. Which made me even ragier. (I just made up a word; don’t be alarmed; I’m a recovering English major; it’s OK).

  66. I don’t have much intel on Mr. BM yet, so no idea of his education, financial status or political beliefs. And it may be going nowhere, but we’ll see.

    True but my bar is low. Of course, it would be neat if he was a Christian to boot. I’ve noticed that girls may skip going to to church during the courting and honeymoon phases but as soon as they pop out a baby, they usually go back to church.

  67. Had to mess with the border/car thing for most of the afternoon today; two crossings backed up quite badly, Canadian T-Day, of course. Princess had been invited to Mr. BM’s dinner and I got more intel; he is Quebecois, bilingual, and is the chair of the co-op housing where he lives. She was gonna be late due to the border hassles; all the fems have had major and minor hassles coming or going across the border for many years. I have had zero, and you’d think with one look at me, they’d have me prone on the pavement with ARs aimed at my head and a full search of the vehicle. Nope. Always very friendly and polite to ME. Things that make ya go “hmmmmmmmmm…..”

    Christian? I have no idea if he is; Princess seems to be agnostic now, though she was raised Roman Catholic and was an altar server for a while. Mrs. OFD is a liberal cradle Catholic and I’m a traditionalist Latin Rite guy and I think the last good Pope we had was named Pius.

  68. The whole miasma around Vatican II. Most of which was hijacked by libtards and commies and then used in their attempts to destroy the Church.

  69. A very conservative, fundamentalist Southern Baptist I read 40 years ago slammed many Popes as non-Christian, but was very nice about XXIII, saying he showed considerable signs of genuine Christian faith. I was SHOCKED, I tell you. I just assumed that every Pope since the Borgias was in hell.

    I also quite liked JP II. What was wrong with him? Apart from being too conservative.

  70. “SINCE the Borgias?” So the Borgias were OK?

    Oh yeah, John Paul II was too conservative, that must have been what was wrong with him. Yikes. I fear someone gets their info about the Church and its Popes from questionable sources, like the MSM, ferinstance, which just LOVED John XXIII, JP II, and the current guy. Ask yourself what this might say about them.

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