Thur. Oct. 24, 2019 – another school day

Cooler and dryer. For sure.

At school learning the secrets of the Fifth Grade science classes. Electricity and motors this week. This lab is not the guy’s strong suit according to the PTA coordinator. And he doesn’t take kindly to suggestions, or planning.

Fun times.

And so I’m off, to get some edumakation beat into some kids…

n

71 thoughts on “Thur. Oct. 24, 2019 – another school day”

  1. Clear cool morning here in the Bluff City.
    The weather has been excellent the last week. Last Saturday was our neighborhood yard sale where everyone in the sub division puts their junk out on the drive and hundreds of shoppers from all over drive about looking for bargains. We used this as an opportunity to get rid of lots of stuff we don’t want to move to the new house. The first buyers showed up at 6am while I was just starting to move the stuff from the garage to the drive. These first buyers were the serious ones with pickups and trailers, looking for bargains they could refurbish and resell. I was pricing everything LOW because my goal was to get rid of it not to make a buck. Toward the end, I was offering stuff for a buck to anybody that stopped to look. “Too cheap to pass up” I would say. At the end of the day, all we had left were matching wing back recliners and a carpet protector for office chairs. When it was all over we made a little over $500, handy pocket money.

  2. Off to the building site again, tomorrow. I hope the bulldozers have started, we’ll see…
    The wife is sick today – nothing obvious, just feeling crappy. Hope she’s better tomorrow. And also hope that I don’t catch it. No time to be sick.

  3. Yesterday MrAtoz said:
    Also, why do you need a RX to buy a CPAP machine? Does it shoot heroin into you at the same time?

    I have been using a CPAP for 30-years and it is a PITA to keep my Rx “valid”. Now that I am on Medicare it is even more of a PITA. All my past years on CPAP meant nothing, I had to “requalify”. Paperwork, paperwork, paperwork.

    An Rx should not be required for anything! All drugs and medical equipment should be over-the-counter at the most and off-the-shelf preferably. Let the abusers abuse and help decrease the surplus population. We need to allow the Darwin Effect to prevail. (I seem to recall @RBT was for free access to drugs except antibiotics.)

    The local gangs were busy last night, driving by the others’ neighborhoods and shooting things up. Fortunately, some of the innocent bystanders were only wounded. Too bad the police restrained themselves and didn’t take out those who were carrying the guns and knives.


  4. (I seem to recall @RBT was for free access to drugs except antibiotics.)

    That was I, adding nuance to RBT’s assertion that all drugs should be non-prescription, and he later used my version. And didn’t even pay me royalties!

  5. Watched Nova’s Testing Self-Driving Cars in the Real World on the local PBS station last night. The video covered the Death of Elaine Herzberg, whose claim to fame is being the first pedestrian to be killed by a self-driving car, and the story of the Tesla driver [who died] in first fatal crash while using autopilot mode.

    The takeaway: Autonomous vehicles aren’t quite ready for prime time.

    Side note: <sarcasm> Lately one thing I’ve noticed in most Nova episodes is how science now seems to be dominated by females. Oh sure, towards the end of an episode they’ll trot out some ageing white guy, but nowadays progress in STEM is being made chiefly by humans of the XX persuasion. </sarcasm>

  6. Side note: Lately one thing I’ve noticed in most Nova episodes is how science now seems to be dominated by females. Oh sure, towards the end of an episode they’ll trot out some ageing white guy, but nowadays progress in STEM is being made chiefly by humans of the XX persuasion.

    PBS. Bet the XX chromosomes weren’t white either.

    When Jack Horkheimer died nine years ago, the Miami PBS station producing “Star Gazers” (renamed before Jack died) attempted to replace him with a triumvirate of multiculturalism featuring two decently qualified male astronomers — one white, one black — and the requisite “Wise Latina”. The obvious third wheel didn’t last very long, but they kept at the charade for a while.

    Yes, “Star Gazers” is still on the air. You can still find the show late at night on PBS and on YouTube.

  7. The takeaway: Autonomous vehicles aren’t quite ready for prime time.

    No, but they are the trojan horse which the industry and governments will use to create a fleet of vehicles amenable to *automation*.

    Enough of the fleet will be turned over in five years to begin the automation argument.

  8. Females dominating science? Um, no. But the MSM and progs in general are invested in the idea that it *ought* to be that way so they hunt out women who can present the material. Preferably young and attractive.

    More and more women are going into medicine, and some areas of biology. The rest remains mostly men, and that is unlikely to change, for all of those well-known, but non-PC reasons.

  9. Off to the building site again, tomorrow. I hope the bulldozers have started, we’ll see…
    The wife is sick today – nothing obvious, just feeling crappy. Hope she’s better tomorrow. And also hope that I don’t catch it. No time to be sick.

    Congrats on starting your new home. I assume that you got the access problem fixed.

  10. From @brad yesterday:

    And, of course, the media acts as if impeachment is actually meaningful. Trump would rely on the Senate, where he can certainly hold 1/3 of the Senators. Which would make any impeachment essentially meaningless. So one doesn’t understand the Democratic strategy at all…

    The dumbocrats are trying to sully Trump’s name so that he loses to candidate D in the 2020 general election. It may work as a number of voters say to themselves, “where there is smoke then there must be fire”.

  11. I have been trying to get amazon to send a QR code for a return to my mom so she can return the printer I sent her. They absolutely will not.

    Every interaction generates something that LINKS to the code. The email they sent me has a link that only works for me. The email they sent her has a link to something online. SEND THE FREAKING PICTURE YOU F’ers.

    I’m going to have to screenshot it, then attach that to an email. WTF is wrong with them?

    n

  12. Home from class. The presenter was a dumpster fire of fail. Lots of thrashing around, dubious statements (like electrons that make an electric current don’t actually move, they somehow “wave” thru the wire, and that is faster than an electron passing thru the same distance. I’m sure it made sense to him when he started, but unless we’re somewhere besides the earth, electrons in free space travel at the speed of light, and in wire are SLOWER.

    He was unable to get his motor demo going, so skipped that, and basically ‘winged it’ for the first class. I ‘wing it’ too, but based off an outline and ppt…. he didn’t know what he was going to present 5 minutes before the kids showed up.

    We ended up doing static electricity, some magnetism, and electromagnetism but he never tied any of it together or explained why we were seeing what we saw.

    I did my best to tie it together for my tables, and fill in some blanks. I must have been doing ok because he adopted some of what I told my group in the later sessions. I also had to troubleshoot why the other tables’ demos weren’t working. Which I did. Jeez he sucked.

    n


  13. Bet the XX chromosomes weren’t white either.

    POCs disproportionately represented, both in terms of demographics and their numbers in STEM.

    But the MSM and progs in general are invested in the idea that it *ought* to be that way so they hunt out women who can present the material. Preferably young and attractive.

    On Nova the ages run the gamut. As to their attractiveness, IMNSHO most of them would be above average–for “lady scientists.” But then I’ve always considered intelligence to be a bigger draw than mere looks, so what do I know? 😀

  14. I have been trying to get amazon to send a QR code for a return to my mom so she can return the printer I sent her. They absolutely will not.

    I’ve had some pretty annoying interactions with them as of late. I’ve always believed that Amazon will show their ugly side the moment Wall Street expects them to start generating earnings at a level anywhere close to having a realistic retail P/E ratio. Maybe the time has arrived.

    Let Amazon take a big chunk of US retail sufficient to justify their stock price and they will become the proverbial “Company Store”.

    You’re in luck with computers and peripherals because Amazon hasn’t eliminated Best Buy … yet. Though, I think we’re living “Peak Amazon” now.

    Snipping Tool in Windows is your friend.


  15. The dumbocrats are trying to sully Trump’s name so that he loses to candidate D in the 2020 general election. It may work as a number of voters say to themselves, “where there is smoke then there must be fire”.

    Or it might not. Saw someone on TV, I think was doing a book tour, or had some other reason to be on the ground in several parts of flyover country. He said he was a bit startled to see the anger toward the persecutors, and as a result thought the president (yay, OUR pres!) might win in a landslide.

    Also saw some Repuglican official say there might be some big house-senate gains, for essentially the same reason.

    All too early, of course, and lots can happen, but still feels good.

  16. Oh, and speaking of elections, noticed that some are speculating that Shrillary might give it another try. Sheesh!

    Also saw Moochelle at random.

  17. Please no. or possibly please yes. I only fear her ability to motivate the cheaters. No one will risk prison for Fauxcahaunt-us.

    n

  18. Part of the reason for my out of context news observations is that I am away from home, and frustrated with that. Too long a story to relate, just frustrating.

    Our former esteemed host used to mention his house sitters George and Martha when he and Barbara were away. Sssnakes are my friends, so I would never risk them as guardians, but any ne’er do wells would encounter something far worse. Maybe even worse than SteveF, if that is possible 😀

  19. You’re in luck with computers and peripherals because Amazon hasn’t eliminated Best Buy … yet. Though, I think we’re living “Peak Amazon” now.

    I think the “Peak Amazon” is a ways off yet. Bezos has got a lot of very smart people trying to increase his market share right now.

  20. Haven’t had any problems with Amazon returns. Go through the return process, print out the return page, and take the item to my local UPS store. Hand them the item (doesn’t even need to be in a shipping box) and the paper I printed out, and “Bob’s your Dad’s Brother”.

    A quick process for me.

    But don’t tell my wife about the “Kohl’s Cash” thing. Although she may already know (probably).

  21. Please no. or possibly please yes. I only fear her ability to motivate the cheaters. No one will risk prison for Fauxcahaunt-us.

    Trump is going to pound the Fauxcahontas meme if she’s the nominee, but Warren is a bit bloodless, more so than Hillary.

    Moochelle will get people wound up to top the last historic first of Obama getting elected. A Nobel prize is a foregone conclusion.


  22. A Nobel prize is a foregone conclusion.

    I lost all interest in the Nobel Peace Prize when it was awarded before the man had even done anything. Now it is just so much waste paper.

    Not the cash, though. That still has buying power.


  23. Now that I am on Medicare it is even more of a PITA

    Same crap here. I had to go through another sleep test, about $1,200.00 billed to Medicare. Been using the machine for about 10 years. Medicare also said I was eligible for a new machine, at great expense to the taxpayers of course. I asked why when my machine is functioning perfectly. Seems when a machine is 5 years old it is considered worn out.

    I also told the sleep doc that I did not like the settings and I changed the settings to my liking. The doc about came unglued. Those settings were set by prescription and I was to never change the settings. I told the doc it was my machine, my body, my sleep. I will do what is necessary to meet my needs. The doc then told me it was a federal offense as I was altering a prescription. I told him call the FBI, I will wait. He just huffed and said to have a good day.

    It is really bizarre that I have to have a prescription to order supplies. A mask, filters, a water tank. I am not ordering a machine. In fact for awhile I was going through CPAP.COM as they were cheaper than my co-pay with private insurance. Still needed a prescription.

    Which brings me to the cost of the machine. My machine was $850.00 through the above site. Had I gotten the machine through private insurance and the local DME it would have cost me $145.00 a month as insurance will only allow billing from the DME over an 11 month time frame. Total cost would be almost $1,600.00 out of my pocket for the exact same machine. And the insurance would not accept anything from the above site thus having to go through their “approved” provider.

    Then a month later I get letter about how I should do what I can to reduce insurance costs and costs to me. Using an “approved” provider was one of the recommended methods I should use. Insanity.

  24. Then a month later I get letter about how I should do what I can to reduce insurance costs and costs to me. Using an “approved” provider was one of the recommended methods I should use. Insanity.

    I wonder how much it cost to send out that letter.


  25. where there is smoke then there must be fire

    Alternatively, it will annoy many formerly unmotivated voters, who decide to put out the fire the arsonists are attempting to start by pissing on the Dems.

    Maybe even worse than SteveF, if that is possible

    It would be nice to be known as the bogie-man’s bogie-man. Alas, I’ve never done anything to make muggers, bullying police, and other scum specifically afraid of me. For one thing, leaving a calling card is one of the dumbest things you can do, if you do anything that the police might be looking into.


  26. I wonder how much it cost to send out that letter.

    A year ago I sent $20 to a group that puts out a science podcast. They ended up sending me at least four mailings to ask for more money, each mailing being heavier than an ordinary letter stamp would cover. I’ve been meaning to send them email saying that if they are going to waste my entire donation on mail costs then I wouldn’t bother giving them any more.

  27. @ rick, the amazon return would be simple, except that it’s a printer that she’s returning, and can’t print the label!

    I finally did screenshot the QR code that the kohl’s returns people need and attach that to an email to mom. What a PITA.

    n

  28. @nick

    Just take the email you get from the Zon to the UPS store. They will scan the QR code you get in the email.

  29. Not the cash, though. That still has buying power.

    Obama made a ton of money off of his ghostwritten books while in office.

    I could have accepted him winning the Nobel if he followed through on his promises to end the wars and close Gitmo. Good or bad, those promises were what got him the prize, and following through would have been true change in the direction of the country and world.


  30. Wow. No wonder I cannot get a CD player in my new F-150

    The ’18 Subaru had a CD slot until I upgraded to the Android head unit. That has 3 USB ports, one of which I filled with a 256 GB SD card holding all my ripped CDs. My preferred Android file manager has been de-listed from the Play Store, but it had a “play folder” option I’m fond of. The “Music” app on the machine is a bit ponderous to use with that big of a file base.

    You might find an external USB connected CD player or use an AUX input on the truck’s head unit for a Walkman if you insist on discs.

  31. @rick, if the printer and mom were in the same state as me, I’d just print the label and carry it to her, but….

    I almost just printed the label and mailed it to her, but then I learned that she could take it to Kohls and deal with living people. If she had to ship it, I would have mailed the label to her. UPS has a ~9$ surcharge for printing the return label, according to the return page at Amazon. That’s 10% or more of the cost of the item.

    n

  32. You might find an external USB connected CD player or use an AUX input on the truck’s head unit for a Walkman if you insist on discs.

    I have 300 CDs and audio books. I have ripped 5 so far. That project is not going well.

    I did find a CD / MP3 player on Big River. After I buy my new truck I will figure out if this will work. If I have to put batteries in the CD player then that is a fail. I am not sure that the radio in the F-150 has a AUX cable input, it does have two USB inputs.
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07YTFMJYG/?tag=ttgnet-20

    ADD: I am not in a hurry to buy a new truck. My debt is way too much at the moment with two homes and two commercial properties. The old rice rod gets me around just fine. It is just I have to stretch the body each time I get out of it and crack the stiff joints.

  33. I can send you some 8 track cassettes for which I no longer have a player. Marty Robbins, gunfighter songs.

    There is a combination 8 track player and record player at my father-in-laws house. And 50+ 8 tracks and 100+ vinyl records. The wife wants to bring them to our house some day. Just what we need, more crap. And yes, there is at last one Marty Robbins record there. And a few Johnny Cash albums.

    Time to be RUTHLESS for our forthcoming move, maybe Dec 1.

  34. [snip] I had to go through another sleep test, about $1,200.00 billed to Medicare. [snip]

    Not to pick nits, but since I worked in a Medicare call center: The price on the bill that’s sent to Medicare is purely fiction. The important thing is what Medicare pays for that service in your area. That would have been listed on your Medicare Summary Notice, what the rest of the insurance world calls an Explanation of Benefits. I saw $100 list price EKGs knocked down to $8.35, just to cite one example.

  35. I saw $100 list price EKGs knocked down to $8.35, just to cite one example.

    I had an EKG a couple of weeks ago. My cardiologist billed BCBS $45 for the EKG and they paid $45. I was amazed. Usually BCBS discounts the bill at least 50 to 90%.

  36. I have 300 CDs and audio books. I have ripped 5 so far. That project is not going well.

    🙂 Procrastination is one of my middle names. If it is a project you’d like to complete, set up a computer to do it in your office, start one rip at shift start, one at midday break, and one when leaving the office. 100 work days and Bob’s your mother’s brother. 20 weeks, less than 6 months.

    I did mine so long ago, I’m not remembering the details at all. I do remember doing the ripping as a sideline to other noodling around with the computers and feeding new ones whenever I perchance noticed a completed task. I believe I was using the free version of Media Monkey which took care of the folder naming and meta data.

    The Amazon link is a brand I’ve not heard of, but seems a well connected model. My big SD card in the phone has a 2nd copy of the music library that I can Bluetooth to the car, too.

  37. Think about the implications of a shooting war getting worse than it currently is, becoming widespread.

    The article focused on civility itself rather than blues vs greys. Rudeness may get violent comeuppance but mass surveillance and the transponder like nature of smart phones might act as disincentives to social breakdown. One can hope.

  38. I ripped mine the same way, just had a stack on the desk and changed them when I noticed that the drawer ejected. I did more than 300… and I still keep buying CDs at goodwill and thrifts and estatesales. I want to OWN my media. (in fact, I’m ripping a disk right now.)

    I discovered that I listen to much more of my music when it’s available digitally. It almost makes me want to rip all my movies to a server too, so they’d be as accessible. Then I come to my senses.

    n

  39. There is a combination 8 track player and record player at my father-in-laws house. And 50+ 8 tracks and 100+ vinyl records. The wife wants to bring them to our house some day. Just what we need, more crap. And yes, there is at last one Marty Robbins record there. And a few Johnny Cash albums.

    Some of the 8 tracks may be valuable to collectors, especially tapes with the LearJet Stereo logo. With Ken Burns “Country Music” airing on PBS, Johnny Cash is attracting interest again.

    Bill Lear and Ford jointly developed the 8 track player. Any dealer demo tape with those two logos together are of particular interest to collectors. Look at the back of the tapes.


  40. It almost makes me want to rip all my movies to a server too, so they’d be as accessible. Then I come to my senses.

    Oh, I’ve done that, too. Other than the HDD expense and the implication of many a lost hour how is that insensible? 😛

  41. We saw Bruce Campbell talk at an “Army of Darkness” screening last night in Downtown Austin.

    I had no idea that “Army of Darkness” was NC-17. The first with the rating … ?

    I still have no clue as to why. No sex/nudity … lots of bad words … bad fake gore … but, as Campbell pointed out, “Goodfellas”, which opened at around the same time, opened with what was a blatant torture scene by MPAA standards.

    “Clerks” nearly received an NC-17 for dialogue alone. Then, expecting the worst when he submitted a donkey show scene in the sequel, Kevin Smith was stunned when the flick passed with an ‘R’, no cuts required.

  42. The scene in Clerks where the girl has a quickie in the bathroom with the **** guy….

    Or the Russian headbanger guy, “Do you want to make some f#ck?!! Berserker!!!”

    Wordy as hell, but very funny at it’s time.

    n

  43. I discovered that I listen to much more of my music when it’s available digitally. It almost makes me want to rip all my movies to a server too, so they’d be as accessible. Then I come to my senses.

    A private Roku channel at my house serving movies and TiVo-ed broadcast TV has been on my “To Do” list for a while.


  44. I drove her home to the new used house and parked her in the driveway. 209,546 miles on her, a 2005 Ford Expedition that I bought new in 2005 for $32K plus TTL.

    I guess that I will sell her to one of the parts places over in Pasadena. She does have 18 months warranty left on her Ford remanufactured transmission. Maybe I will throw her on Craigslist.

    (Blind post: I haven’t looked at this site at all today, but wanted to get this up before it is too late.)

    This just confirms your decision to get rid of your PU:
    https://youtu.be/xcN_WcGr4BU

    My intention is NOT to start a brand flame war, especially here. I firmly believe, and have some experience to back it up, that all brands have their good and bad models. I also believe that anything can be fixed, although not necessarily economically. Finally, there is no such thing as a perfect car (or toaster…)

    I have been watching this guy’s videos for a while, and he seems pretty reasonable. Please watch the whole thing, and pay attention to his reasoning. Yes, he is picky, and could be accused of only taking the high road, but he makes sense in his context. His context might not be everyone’s.

    Lynn, I assume this is your engine. Apologies if not. I was appalled that such a design could make it into production, but note that the sludge problem can be avoided by frequent oil changes. The spark plugs… not sure. The lesson is to pay attention to the details of a particular brand. Sometimes the factory is right; sometimes the aftermarket. It is a good idea to watch field experience and act accordingly.

    Finally, the newer cars are complex. That complexity often makes a car run very well until seemingly everything goes wrong. Unless you like challenges, don’t keep a car into that situation. I am reminded of the fat cat who bought a new XXX car every year. When asked, he said he thought it was the greatest of all cars.

  45. Well, of course I read, and even posted, earlier today. Not getting senile, just forgetful :-p

  46. Re ripping movies, there is only one xxx, two xxx, OK three movies I have ever wanted to watch more than once. Of course, my wife wants to watch many movies several times, so I have watched with her, but not wanted.

  47. Re the comments about newer cars that don’t have CD players, I have some older cars that have CD players, and even one with a changer. I don’t like to take physical media in a car, but would like a Bluetooth adapter that can be spliced into the radio’s antenna lead. Ones I have work very well, but now seem to be extinct. The ones that plug into a cigar lighter are clumsy, and the one I bought doesn’t work well. Help!

    And, please don’t recommend a new head unit. I like to keep my cars original. None of them has an aux audio input, but I would put one in if I could find a BT to audio converter that would work in a car.

  48. @Lynn: Yes, the neighbors finally consented to our road. Not sure what finally wore them down – maybe they realized that the next step was going to be expensive lawyers. Whatever, we have our building permit.

    I’m in the train now, on the way to the site. Meeting with the general contractor and the – what you call them in the US? – the company that will build the road and pour the foundation. This afternoon, with the company that is doing the solar installation. That’s mainly about price – their offer is basically good, but they’re charging full retail for the components, which I could theoretically order at wholesale. I don’t mind them having a margin, but that’s generally a factor of two, which is a bit much on top of the installation costs.

    – – – – –

    On the topic of gangs and youth violence: There’s an infamous case here, “Carlos”. He’s an immigrant who did a lot of MMA, and (iirc) put a couple of random bystanders in the hospital. For which he got tossed in jail, where he regularly assaults the guards and other prisoners. He has something like two dozen separate cases against him now. After the last one, he said “ok, that’s it, I’m really going to war now”.

    On the Swiss forum on reddit, I suggested that he is a living argument for the death penalty. You can’t ever release the guy back into society, you can’t stop him from assaulting people even in secure prisons, and it costs a pile of money to keep him in prison in the first place. He’s a waste of oxygen.

    The reaction was kind of funny: my post was taken down within a couple of minutes. Went back up. Was taken down again. Apparently, the main objection of the moderators was that it was “tasteless” to bring money into it.

    – – – – –

    “I could have accepted him winning the Nobel if he followed through on his promises to end the wars and close Gitmo.”

    This. Obama was obviously unqualified, and just being run by his advisors. Still, I had hope that he would at least follow through on this rather fundamental promise. Instead, he involved the US in even more wars. And somehow Trump is a bad guy for withdrawing a couple hundred troops?

  49. P. S. I’m a big three guy, so here are the other two:
    https://youtu.be/3uvc5v4ssJM
    https://youtu.be/zQ0LdHP09CY

    Note that the first one is GM truck-like engine-ish issues, and the other is Dodge CARS to buy or not. Not exactly a direct comparison, but still some good info. Such is the Internet. His Dodge truck video is promised, but not out yet.

    I was a little surprised at some of the issues, but that is part of the lesson. Some things are easy/cheap to fix, whether by the owner, or for hire. Others… yeah.

    And, these are older cars, which will not appeal to new car buyers, but they have been around enough to have some history. Makes me wonder what he would own and enjoy as a hot rod.

    Presented here in good faith. Enjoy as a teaching moment, or as entertainment.

  50. Saw “The Reliant” in theater tonight. Kevin Sorbo did a pretty good job. Not a great film, not a terrible film. Loved the second amendment message. Loved the self defense message. Thought they did a reasonable job of presenting a microcosm of societal collapse. I think there would have been a LOT more gunfire in the gun shop scene.
    Appreciated the bit where bad things happen because the family failed to take prepper dad at face value when he said ‘time to go’.
    Bits are going to make people annoyed, some of the Jesus stuff is going to be uncomfortable for folks, could have used a firmer hand with the editing. About 30 minutes too long.
    Liked the message after the credits.
    Worth a few hours of your life. Might convince those not on board with prepping that there’s wisdom in being ready.

  51. https://youtu.be/mKJs4rQcTRU
    For Toyoda fans. Impressive, much better than the one I had. But, that is part of the lesson.

    They rise, they fall. I know of a ’35 Cadillac V16 I would drool over , and an MG TC Tickford that is more beautiful than when it was built. More modern? How about an MGA Twin Cam?

    Just dreaming. Now off to dreamland.

  52. The scene in Clerks where the girl has a quickie in the bathroom with the **** guy….

    IIRC, the MPAA had a problem with the porn movie title list Randall (Jeff Anderson) reads while on the phone to the distributor in front of a mother and her elementary school-age daughter. There is an obvious edit to blatantly show that the kid wasn’t around as the list was read, but the implication is there.

    The necrophilia probably didn’t help.

    @Nick – I don’t know if you have any contacts on the team who does Smith’s production design, but they nail the mid-grade convention scene in the latest flick, right down to the requisite furry running around. I’d pay to attend that con.

  53. @jimB,

    I watched the guy’s ford video. It’s interesting how personal experience can color one’s perceptions.

    In 17 years of wrenching, he’s done 12 that were bad enough to do an engine swap.

    Ford has been using that engine since 1998, and the specific 3 valve since 2004/5. Ford is the number one seller of light trucks in the US. They’ve sold a CRAPTON. But because he’s done less than one engine swap a year, they’re crap and shouldn’t be sold! RUN AWAY he says.

    I’ve got that engine in my Expy, and yes, it has known issues. Issues that weren’t apparent until time had passed. The sparkplug thing is incredible. But now there are tools and techniques to deal with it. I let my mechanic change the plugs (a once per owner service, BTW) and he said “Naw, it’s no big deal, we just do it.”) The phazors are an issue for some people, due to whatever. If the engine is filled with sludge, is that Ford’s problem or a maintenance problem?

    Then he recommends the Chevy Avalanche. Oh my. While I know one guy who loved his (which he basically drove for free on a GM “Friends and Family” deal, like many GM products the Avalanche looks horrible as it ages. MASSIVE amounts of plastic trim that fade and get tiger striped, paint that fades and peels…. I don’t trust the weather seals on that weird rear window, but maybe it held up….

    GM never figured out how to keep paint on their trucks anywhere near an ocean. horizontal surfaces always seem to be bare galvanized, or finely rusted. And lately I’ve noticed a lot of torn sheet metal on GM truck beds and rear fenders. I never see torn metal on Fords or Dodge…

    Funny thing is, he never mentions the tranny problem that engine/tranny has. There is a circlip that breaks, which leads to a variety of symptoms, mainly severe stuttering under gentle acceleration. It’s a $3 part, with an $800 labor bill to fix.

    One of the reasons I like used vehicles /well established models is that you have some history on potential problems. A new platform can look great but turn into a dog after a couple of years.

    Any maker and any vehicle can have customary problems, that’s what that report he had shows. Given the number of 5.4L V8’s on the road, and the fact you can get a couple hundred thousand miles with minimal effort, I don’t think it’s a motor to “run away” from.

    n

  54. If you are adventuresome, why not find torrents of movies/music you own and just download in the quality you like? The kids finally want to watch “Buffy”. I have the complete set in storage (in-between houses, living in condo). I’ll find a good torrent and download by season and throw it on my Apple TV server box.

    Use a VPN. Be safe. Be legal. LOL!


  55. he followed through on his promises to end the wars and close Gitmo. Good or bad, those promises were what got him the prize, and following through would have been true change in the direction of the country and world.

    Agreed. Before? That’s like paying a kid before he mows your lawn. Dumb.

  56. Nick, agree with all your points. My reason for referencing these long videos is to point out that field experience is one valuable aspect. I know people who will believe whatever dealers say, because they are “official.” And, independent shops certainly have their shortcomings. This guy clearly likes European cars. Good for him. I was just trying to give Lynn some supporting info. Giving up on a car is a little like giving up on a family member.

    There are so many issues with keeping a car for a long time. Just one is the EPA’s pressure on manufacturers to extend oil change intervals. This one issue has sent countless engines to early failure. OTOH, a high percentage of cars are junked with perfectly good engines and drivetrains. One size does not fit all. Long ownership and lots of miles do not fit the customer who buys a new car every year.

  57. Yep, and if gunk fouling internal passageways is such a big issue with this motor, it seems crazy that no one has a cleaning kit or system. Seems like a bolt on manifold and a pressurized solvent circulator would do the trick.

    n


  58. Yesterday MrAtoz said:
    Also, why do you need a RX to buy a CPAP machine? Does it shoot heroin into you at the same time?

    Plenty to be had on eBay…just buy before someone reports the auction.


  59. The takeaway: Autonomous vehicles aren’t quite ready for prime time.

    I’ve always thought what is needed is a close-range vehicle-to-vehicle communications network…but I guess that requires some level of ‘critical mass’.

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