Mon. April 22, 2019 – back to the grind

65F and damp this am. Yesterday turned beautiful and stayed beautiful all day. We’re forecast for clear for a couple more days, and I hope we stay relatively cool too.

Work on the yard and house will continue this week. I’ve got a truck load ready for auction and much more queued up. I have the bathroom reno to finish. I have to visit Chicago to help get my mom’s house ready for sale. Swim team starts in a week and school ends in about 4 weeks.

This is going to be a busy month.

n

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44 Responses to Mon. April 22, 2019 – back to the grind

  1. Nick Flandrey says:

    no comment

    According to data obtained from the website “Haver I Been Pwned,” more than 23 million people who were hacked used the password ‘123456,’ followed by ‘123456789’ (7.7 million) and ‘qwerty’ (3.8 million).

    Top 10 most-frequently used passwords by hack victims:

    123456
    123456789
    qwerty
    password
    111111
    12345678
    abc123
    1234567
    password1
    12345

    n

  2. Ray Thompson says:

    This is one of my passwords:

    !H1*Qh%fXkuH!#Qt

    I think I am safe from the random guessing. Sites I don’t give a rat’s rear end about all use the same password, obscure, but not complicated. I suppose I could get hacked. But on those sites I really don’t care. ARSTECHNICA is not what I would consider a high value target.

    Sites I care about all have long complicated passwords. I can’t remember them so I store them in a password manager.

    My son has access if needed. All he need do is sign on, I get an email. If I do not respond in 4 hours then his access is granted. I learned that lesson when my friend died and his wife and I struggled to get access to his accounts. Without my help it would have been a real problem. Security questions were the most difficult. I keep my security questions and answers in the password manager.

  3. JimL says:

    52º and sunny now. Should be in the mid-50s for lunchtime, so good day.

    Roamer training is scheduled for 5 pm today. Every election it’s the same thing, so I’ll go there, get paid $10 for an hour of standing & listening. It’s important to me because I do tend to forget things with time. I like the refresher course.

    I had a coworker that liked to use a period (.) as a password. He couldn’t do that here because of the 8-char min & complexity requirements, but other sites…

    For myself, I tend to use a generator with as many characters & complexities as I can get away with. It’s a hassle if I ever have to type one in, but that’s rare anymore. For instance, “RQ9AOl6OODTLSoI9POSo” is the password suggested for the “new” account I created. I’ll throw it away now.

  4. nick flandrey says:

    non-human passwords are all well and good, until you can’t get your manager to open, or don’t have access to it….

    Then you are resetting passwords, and hoping you can still log into your email to get the reset links.

    n

  5. JimL says:

    Hmmm. Earth Day. I didn’t even realize.

  6. Harold Combs says:

    RE: Passwords
    I use 14+ character pass-phrases for my business password. (My pass phrases are all favorite movie titles) For banking & finance, I let LastPass generate a 20 character complex password. For random web sites, I have a mental algorithm that combines the site name and a 9 character sequence into a password that’s easy to create once I look at the site name. And I let LastPass remember it all and run security checks.
    Re-using the same password on multiple sites has caused endless problems. As one site is breached and the passwords stolen, ambitious hacking organizations will try those passwords on any site with a corresponding email address as ID. We have had several users accounts compromised because they had secure passwords but used the same one everywhere so when LinkedIn was breached the bad guys had their password for the company account. We have a cyber security education program but some people never listen.

  7. lynn says:

    “Sri Lanka Points to Islamist Militants in Easter Bombing Attacks”
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/sri-lanka-makes-arrests-in-easter-bombing-attacks-11555918580

    “Authorities take 24 people into custody; social-media services remain blocked after bombings kill nearly 300”

    Why am I not surprised ?

    Hat tip to:
    https://drudgereport.com/

  8. lynn says:

    “Churches Have Become The #1 Target For Hate Attacks – An Average Of 105 Every Single Month”
    https://www.infowars.com/churches-have-become-the-1-target-for-hate-attacks-an-average-of-105-every-single-month/

    “The bombings in Sri Lanka have once again put a spotlight on the rising tide of violence against Christians all over the world”

    I am very disturbed that three of the USA churches that have been attacked in the last couple of years are in Texas.

    Hat tip to:
    https://drudgereport.com/

  9. lynn says:

    Freefall: fundamental forces of nature
    http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff3300/fc03268.htm

    Yup, do not antagonize them. And from today’s episode, what is a skyhook ?

  10. lynn says:

    “5-star phonies: Inside the fake Amazon review complex”
    https://thehustle.co/amazon-fake-reviews

    “I spent two weeks in the underbelly of Amazon’s fake review economy — and emerged questioning our collective trust in the stars.”

    Uh huh. I do wonder about many of the 5 star reviews. My son advocates reading the four star reviews instead.

    Hat tip to:
    https://www.codeproject.com/script/Mailouts/View.aspx?mlid=14294&_z=1988477

  11. Greg Norton says:

    Uh huh. I do wonder about many of the 5 star reviews. My son advocates reading the four star reviews instead.

    I know the iOS app store is subject to manipulation. My former leads at Death Star Telephone made sure to balance all the 1-star reviews with 5-star during the early years of the Uverse app.

  12. lynn says:

    Well, that house that I was thinking about making another lowball offer on sold again today. I wonder if it will go through this time.
    https://www.har.com/10118-reading-road/sale_63822655

  13. Greg Norton says:

    Well, that house that I was thinking about making another lowball offer on sold again today. I wonder if it will go through this time.

    How quickly did it return to market the last time someone made an offer?

  14. lynn says:

    Well, that house that I was thinking about making another lowball offer on sold again today. I wonder if it will go through this time.

    How quickly did it return to market the last time someone made an offer?

    About a week or two. I did not write it down so am not exactly sure.

  15. RickH says:

    @lynn

    If you are serious about the house, then have your agent submit an offer. It’s OK to have multiple offers on a house. Maybe the other offer is *really* low, and you can get it for just *low*.

    Couldn’t hurt to submit your own offer, IMHO. Your realtor can advise. (And go through a realtor, who have a bit more ‘pull’ with a seller and the seller’s agent. Even if it costs you a bit of commission.)

  16. Ray Thompson says:

    Well, buckaroos and buckerettes, I just got back from five hours in the ER. Most painful gut ache I have ever had. I tend to avoid doctors but in this case I could no longer stand the pain, something was seriously wrong.

    The diagnosis. I have a 3mm x 7mm kidney stone working it’s way through my system. The next 72 hours are going to be miserable according to the ER doc. Advised me to see my urologist first thing tomorrow to see about lithotripsy. May not be an option as the machine is passed around from facility to facility in the area. Only available in my area on Monday. Yikes!

    I have been prescribed some drugs, Flonase to aid in passing the stone, nausea from the pain drug, and a narcotic pain reliever in the form of Oxycodone which I will try and avoid if at all possible.

    And in other news the brand new mower is in the shop. A fuel venting valve fell apart when I moved the assembly. And the operating handles are much too stiff and do not return to neutral when released. The guy that picked up the mower even stated the handles are much too stiff. All covered by warranty of course. But work must be done by the dealer even though I am capable so that the warranty is maintained.

    The air cushion seat is marked down from $990.00 to $299.00 so I am having that installed new. I have tried the seat on another mower and it really does make a difference. I was going to try for a year with the current seat as it is much more comfortable than my old seat. If discomfort was still an issue then get the air cushion seat. A savings of almost $700.00 was just too much to let slip.

  17. lynn says:

    If you are serious about the house, then have your agent submit an offer. It’s OK to have multiple offers on a house. Maybe the other offer is *really* low, and you can get it for just *low*.

    Couldn’t hurt to submit your own offer, IMHO. Your realtor can advise. (And go through a realtor, who have a bit more ‘pull’ with a seller and the seller’s agent. Even if it costs you a bit of commission.)

    I will wait. My agent says that the seller’s agent is a real bulldog about getting the listed price. She refused to even talk about my previous offer. If this sale falls through then I will get my agent to submit my lowball offer.

  18. lynn says:

    The diagnosis. I have a 3mm x 7mm kidney stone working it’s way through my system. The next 72 hours are going to be miserable according to the ER doc. Advised me to see my urologist first thing tomorrow to see about lithotripsy. May not be an option as the machine is passed around from facility to facility in the area. Only available in my area on Monday. Yikes!

    Dude, ouch ! Get better quickly !

    What the heck is going on with all of these kidney stones all of a sudden ?

  19. lynn says:

    My mother is still in the Methodist hospital in the med center of Houston. Tomorrow will be three weeks since the first surgery for the hip implant. She has been slowly getting better since the second surgery two weeks ago. The problem is the left leg nerve is either paralyzed or dead. It will take three to six months to fully come back, if it does come back fully. She has been getting up and sitting on the bed, she describes it as hell.

    My brother got Mom moved to a semi intensive care ward at Methodist last week. A much higher nurse to patient ratio and they are getting pain meds to her so she can concentrate on healing. The previous ward was not getting pain meds to her for as long as 24 hours so my dad was having to monitor them which he is not good at. We may be moving her to rehab this Friday, not sure yet.

  20. lynn says:

    The air cushion seat is marked down from $990.00 to $299.00 so I am having that installed new. I have tried the seat on another mower and it really does make a difference. I was going to try for a year with the current seat as it is much more comfortable than my old seat. If discomfort was still an issue then get the air cushion seat. A savings of almost $700.00 was just too much to let slip.

    I would really like to hear you put the roll bar on. Those bad boys do tip over occasionally.

  21. Ray Thompson says:

    I would really like to hear you put the roll bar on. Those bad boys do tip over occasionally.

    In 10 years of mowing my property, in all possible situations, even being stuck in the drainage ditch, with a zero turn, there has never been a situation where the center of gravity exceeded the boundaries of the wheelbase. There is not enough of a slope anywhere to allow the unit to tip over backwards. Putting the roll bar up will cause even more safety issues as hitting branches of trees would tip the mower over backwards. I am not trimming the trees to a height to clear the roll bar.

    Consumer mowers do not come with roll bars and seat belts, only commercial mowers. I am certain it has something to do with OSHA and the commercial operation. Commercial mowers also are prone to cut property of unknown issues and thus the risk is greater. Mowing the same property every time a person becomes aware of the issues.

    I have never seen a commercial mower operator with the roll cage latched up. All of them are latched down. I suspect the tree issues is the reason as catching on a branch is really a danger. Rolling over sideways is not really an issue unless the property is really steep. Commercial mowers know to not use a ZTR on such property.

  22. lynn says:

    Putting the roll bar up will cause even more safety issues as hitting branches of trees would tip the mower over backwards.

    I have been in that situation in my dad’s 35 hp diesel Ford tractor. I got the roll bar hung up in a tree on my dad’s property. It was exciting there for a minute.

    We put a roll bar on dad’s tractor after the president of Exxon was killed rolling his tractor down the hill into the bay about 25+ years ago. Dad’s property is about 32 ft above Lavaca bay. He gets somebody to mow it now since he had his heart surgery 20 years ago. Starting the tractor going uphill on that 30% grade was exciting as you almost always popped a wheelie but the 72 inch lawn mower on the PTO stopped you from going over. Never go sideways on hill is a good rule.

  23. ech says:

    I am very disturbed that three of the USA churches that have been attacked in the last couple of years are in Texas.

    A significant number of the church fires have been arson by someone in the church, as opposed to arson by an enemy of the church.

  24. lynn says:

    A significant number of the church fires have been arson by someone in the church, as opposed to arson by an enemy of the church.

    Our church, Westbury Church of Christ, was burned in 1975 ??? from a robber setting a fire to cover the robbery. Burned most everything but the auditorium. We only had $100K fire insurance for a half million dollar loss IIRC. The congregation raised the money to rebuild the office and classrooms plus a gymnasium / meeting area which cost two million dollars.

    The thief was caught later and sent to prison. One of our deacons made it a point to visit him in prison. He later converted and baptized him. I have no idea how that worked out.

  25. RickH says:

    @lynn

    I don’t know much about real estate law and ethics, etc, but I think that a realtor has to submit all offers. If they don’t, they are subject to sanction by their Realtor (c) group.

    That said, it may be that you offer, while lower than asking, might be above the already-submitted offer.

    If it was me (it’s not, and my situation is different from yours), I’d submit my best offer right now. Again, that’s what I would do. You know best for you.

    Maybe if you throw in a nice FLASHLIGHT ?

  26. JimB says:

    Maybe if you throw in a nice FLASHLIGHT ?

    Hmm. I also don’t know much about realtors, having avoided them in all but one transaction. That one was enough. All I have ever done is buy land very close to me, and dealt directly with the sellers. We built our own house over 40 years ago, so no sale there. My question is, why even bother with a realtor? All they seem to do here is mess things up. I DO use an escrow company, one with lawyers, which is rare in CA.

    I had a relative in real estate, and a local friend. One of them was sharp… but my real issue is that the realty people exert waaay too much influence on the whole transaction. Just like architects on home construction. I guess I will never change.

    Oh, and to address some naysayers, I am far from perfect, but I am closer than most sales agents, and even some brokers. Most of all, I am happy with the result.

  27. JimB says:

    Ray, please get well soon! All here are pulling for you in our own way.

  28. nick flandrey says:

    @ray, my best wishes for a full and quick recovery too. You’ll remember my ambulance ride when I discovered kidney stones for the first time. I have been on fire, fallen into auditorium seats, rubbed half my face off on the interstate highway, had MRSA so bad I needed surgery TWICE, and the pain of my kidney stone topped all of that. I was sure I was going to die, in pain and alone.

    They HURT.

    n

  29. nick flandrey says:

    If anyone remembers the columnist and programmer from Windows Magazine days- Karen Kenworthy of Karen’s Power Tools fame, they are still available. Since her death a guy named Joe has been supporting and maintaining the tools. Some of her stuff was really useful.

    He sends out a newsletter periodically and you can subscribe here–

    https://www.karenware.com

    This month–

    https://www.karenware.com/n/kptnl/2019/04/22/please-don-t-click-spam_windows-key-searching_disabling-web-search_karen-s-directory-printer-v5-4-3-released

    He shares an interesting tip about shutting off windows web search in the command line area…

    n

  30. nick flandrey says:

    Hmmm, didn’t someone say something about some ‘bad hombres’??

    Mexico hit by 8,493 assassinations in first three months of 2019, marking the country’s deadliest trimester on record as gang violence spirals

    The government reported 8,493 assassinations during the first three months of the year, surpassing the 2018 total of 6,599 homicides in the same period
    The Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System’s report indicated an average of 93 people murdered each day in 2019
    It’s the deadliest quarter since the country first started recording the murder rate in 1997
    The number is up from 5,441 in 2011, when the government started to fight back against the criminal organizations
    President Obrador recently announced a National Guard unit made up of police and military personnel to counter the rising murder rate

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6947277/Mexico-suffers-8-493-assassination-three-months-2019.html

    n

  31. Ray Thompson says:

    I have been on fire, fallen into auditorium seats, rubbed half my face off on the interstate highway, had MRSA so bad I needed surgery TWICE, and the pain of my kidney stone topped all of that. I was sure I was going to die, in pain and alone.

    Well that just made me feel a lot better.

  32. dkreck says:

    Yes Ray I also thought it was the worst. God bless morphine. Mine was two weeks ago last Thursday. Only one more attack later that night. No idea if I passed it but so far no more. Saw the urologist on Thursday last week. Young guy (relatively speaking) maybe about 40. Poked my gut, squeezed everything between my legs and shoved a finger up me. Lovely, not even flowers. Have to get another cat scan to see if all is clear along with some blood work. See him again about the middle of next month. Oh and I have a likely benign adrenal gland tumor. Says that’s fairly common. Blood work will confirm that.
    It’s hell gettin’ old!

  33. nick flandrey says:

    Busy day for me tomorrow, volunteer at school and ‘meet the air unit’ in my CPA class. Wife is traveling for work, so babysitter will pick up the kids and get dinner in them. I think it’s optimistic that she’ll get them in bed…

    so I’m gonna put a pot roast in the slow cooker, and head out early.

    That means I’m off to bed.

    n

  34. lynn says:

    Well this is a shocker. Dad sent me a text tonight and said that Mom did not have a UTI like we thought. She has / had sepsis (a blood infection). No wonder she was out of her mind so much over the last two plus weeks. I thought that she was more of her old self yesterday (Sunday) and Dad says that she is even more her old self today.

  35. Greg Norton says:

    Well this is a shocker. Dad sent me a text tonight and said that Mom did not have a UTI like we thought. She has / had sepsis (a blood infection). No wonder she was out of her mind so much over the last two plus weeks. I thought that she was more of her old self yesterday (Sunday) and Dad says that she is even more her old self today.

    Yeah, the faster you get her out of the hospital, the better off she’ll be from an infection standpoint.

    In a grid down situation, you won’t even want to go near a hospital once the municipal water systems go down and the orderlies stop mopping.

    All nighter for me. The new toll lanes for Amazon HQ2 in VA.

  36. lynn says:

    I don’t know much about real estate law and ethics, etc, but I think that a realtor has to submit all offers. If they don’t, they are subject to sanction by their Realtor (c) group.

    That said, it may be that you offer, while lower than asking, might be above the already-submitted offer.

    If it was me (it’s not, and my situation is different from yours), I’d submit my best offer right now. Again, that’s what I would do. You know best for you.

    I am looking for house to live in that is not behind a behind a levee. We have been living behind levees since 1990, thinking that they are safe. I have decided that levees are not safe, they just reduce the amount of risk. That said, I am not in a hurry. I am looking for the perfect house (not gonna happen) or a good deal (may gonna happen).

    So, if I miss out on this house, that is ok. I was just trying for a good deal on it. There are plenty of other houses in the woods. Such as this other house that I would need to add an apartment plus a guest bedroom / bathroom combo on the first floor. Plus a man cave ! Plus interior storm windows for sound deadening and efficiency.
    https://www.har.com/1411-mulberry-farm-lane/sale_10921032

  37. lynn says:

    All nighter for me. The new toll lanes for Amazon HQ2 in VA.

    Sounds like fun. Not !

  38. Greg Norton says:

    “All nighter for me. The new toll lanes for Amazon HQ2 in VA.”

    Sounds like fun. Not !

    Less fun for the DC commuters about to lose their HOV lanes on I395.

    They wanted HQ2.

    The fancy new tunnel under Seattle, also leading to an Amazon HQ complex, has tolling gear from us ready to go live with the flip of a switch.

  39. brad says:

    Passwords are a problem. Actually, people are a problem. I follow the best practices, as mentioned by others here: throw-away accounts have a throw-away password. Others have a complex password, stored in a password generator.

    The problem then comes: if someone wants to get access to my account, too many of those sites offer password resets with the help of security questions. If a human gets involved, it’s all over: social engineering will allow a convincing actor to bypass even the security questions. Even 2FA doesn’t help against social engineering attacks.

    – – – – –

    Amazon reviews: I always read the 2- 3- and 4-star reviews. 1-star reviews are people venting their spleens, 5-star reviews can be good, but too often are rigged or naively uncritical.

    I want to know what people find wrong. Nothing is perfect; the question is whether the flaws are something I can live with. In the best case, the flaws may even be something I want. Example: a hotel review that complains the hotel is too far away from the local nightlife – sounds great to me!

    – – – – –

    @Ray: Sorry to hear about your ER visit – take it easy, and take care of yourself…

    – – – – –

    Our house is now “unofficially” on the market, meaning that it’s not published anywhere – the real estate folks are showing it to contacts they have from other properties, as a sort of “secret tip, get it before it’s even for sale”. Supposedly, 3 parties are pretty seriously interested – we’ll see if that translates into at least one serious offer. Ideally, there would be 2 or even 3 offers, and they would bid the price up.

  40. pcb_duffer says:

    The secret to security questions is to give false answers. If everyone knows that Italian is your favorite cuisine, answer Chinese. You just have to have the answers stored somewhere accessible in a crisis.

  41. Nick Flandrey says:

    @ray, certainly you must mean FLOWMAX, as Flonase is a nasal spray??

    n

  42. Ray Thompson says:

    certainly you must mean FLOWMAX, as Flonase is a nasal spray

    Indeed you are correct. Now let me hang my head in shame.

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