Thur. Dec. 26, 2019 – Boxing Day

Cool and wet, no snow left on most yards, just green grass.

Had a wonderful Christmas Day with the kids and family. Missed my dad, I got the sort of presents he used to get. I’m trying not to dwell on it. But I do miss him, especially at times like this.

Checking out of Chez Sibling today to head back toward Chicago. We’ll have a day to maybe do something in the city museum before flying home. Also some minor things in my mom’s new place before she heads back toward warmer climes. I can count the remaining vacation days in my dwindling supply of Breathe Right strips…

Plenty to do before we leave, gotta get sheets stripped, bathrooms cleaned, and the ever widening debris field from the kids contained.

Pancakes and eggs for breakfast, yum.

n

Author: Nick Flandrey

Mid 50s, stay at home dad, with two elementary school age girls. Love my family and my life.

28 thoughts on “Thur. Dec. 26, 2019 – Boxing Day”

  1. Checking out of Chez Sibling today to head back toward Chicago. We’ll have a day to maybe do something in the city museum before flying home.

    If your kids haven’t seen it already, the Feld has a really nice exhibit around “Sue”, their newish (if you haven’t been in a while) Tyrannosaur skeleton.

    They amp up the SJW aspect, of course, but it is still cool to look at.

    We just went in March. The museum closes ~ 4-5, unfortunately.

  2. Boxing Day, our cats’ favorite day of the year.

    Hoping you all are having a Happy, Merry, and Fun Holiday Season, no matter your religious or other persuasions.

  3. Just to satisfy my curiosity, where in Michigan do you go?
    My mom was born and raised in the Grand Rapids area.

  4. Good afternoon to all from SW FL – high of 79 expected today, mostly cloudy, not bad for Dec 26th.

    Okay, hope this covers most folks…
    Happy Boxing Day and Kwanzaa
    Belated Merry Xmas; Happy Hanukkah, Las Posadas and Festivus

  5. I am back at work wondering if I will get anything done today. Only one of my employees is here today, he fixed the code bug I introduced on Monday. I am growing more incompetent by the day.

  6. A Merry Christmas to everyone here.

    Snowing all morning here in the high desert. Nice.

    Friends driving to LAX are probably having an interesting time of it. The I14 is open, so they should be ok.


  7. Cold and rain here. I5 and SR58 closed due to snow

    Next month, expecting to go to Kernville via Mojave and Tehachapi. Probably passable by then.

  8. @Alan, first word is the same, but go West to the water…. I don’t like to leave searchable place names.

    We’re back in the south suburbs of Chicago. Balmy day, but very moist. I94 thru Indiana has surveillance cams every 1 to 2 miles for 40 miles. Also Bluetooth readers. Illinois had license plate readers shortly after the states line. Welcome to the surveillance state.

    N

  9. Thanks Alan and Ed and dadcooks, and all the rest of you for the holiday and Christmas wishes.

    N

  10. The key for the van broke again. Ok, the loop for the key ring. I spent a little time looking for “where is the chip in Ford keys”. I actually found a useful page among the dreck of “we can help” pop-ups and dullards saying “just buy a new key and stop wasting your time”.

    $80 or so plus time spent at the dealership vs 20 minutes searching on the phone while watching StarTrek and another 20 minutes from getting the drill, choosing a bit, drilling the hole, using a file and sandpaper to smooth off and polish a bit and put everything away. Cats were also petted.

    Yeah. Twenty minutes on the phone, mostly reading useless comments. Another twenty actually doing the work.

    The plastic is soft. Drill “lightly” and perhaps not have a bit of blow-out when the bit gets through.

    On another site, the guy carved the chip out and glued it to the ignition switch. Then had a $4 key cut. Well, there’s your Plan B. 🙂

  11. We’re back in the south suburbs of Chicago. Balmy day, but very moist. I94 thru Indiana has surveillance cams every 1 to 2 miles for 40 miles. Also Bluetooth readers. Illinois had license plate readers shortly after the states line. Welcome to the surveillance state.

    Sugar Land has license plate readers on all of the major roads in and on 12 of the police vehicles. All totally automated. Mostly federal dollars also IIRC.

  12. There was a time California plowed and salted and had chain restrictions. Well they still do but not on the major highways in So Cal. Just too many idiots so they just close instead. Still closed. The cam I pointed to earlier looks almost like a white-out.

  13. We went to Fort Worth yesterday. Three hours up 281 and then East on I-20 then I-30 to Cherry Lane. Make a left. Make another left and get lost. Normal.

    It was a nice visit. They have a native pecan tree in the front yard. Not much there but tasty. I have oaks that make larger acorns. Acorns are not tasty. Or I’ve not been hungry enough.

    I did note the speed limits on I-20 and I-30 are more like mere suggestions. But in a 75 MPH cruising at 78…. yeah, no, I just didn’t want to run 85+. Not in a Ford Freestar.

    Coming home gave a bit of entertainment. Cruising almost 80 in a stretch of 75 and a couple of cars I had passed 20 minutes ago decided it was time to pass me. Again. And they kept going this time unlike some folks that just have to pass Right Now and then slow down. So…. all of a sudden I have a Nissan pick-up right on my ass. Like all I can see in my rear view mirror is the logo on the grill. Yeah, cruising at almost 80 and you are going to do what? Start pushing?

    Next passing zone he whipped by and started riding the bumpers of the folks that had passed me. Another passing zone and he was gone.

    So we get south of Evant. Almost to Adamsville and as we come over a hill there’s a DPS with the cherries on. “Hey, I bet ya that’s a black pick-up he’s caught”.

    Yep. So much for running 90 in a 75. On Christmas.

  14. Also Bluetooth readers. Illinois had license plate readers shortly after the states line. Welcome to the surveillance state.

    For reading passing cars, Bluetooth reliability still sucks. Maybe 50%.

    I’d be surprised if Illinois had a sufficiently healthy financial relationship with a quality vendor to make the plate readers work effectively.

  15. So we get south of Evant. Almost to Adamsville and as we come over a hill there’s a DPS with the cherries on. “Hey, I bet ya that’s a black pick-up he’s caught”.

    Yep. So much for running 90 in a 75. On Christmas.

    Sucks to be a Texas DPS (state trooper) on any holiday. The entire force is out working. Tickets and accidents. And not always in that order.

    And running 90 in a 75 is asking for it. That was my youngest brother before he went blind.

  16. What Bluetooth are they trying to read? I keep it turned off on my phone…

    Most new cars have Bluetooth capability which is constantly broadcasting. The problem with using the serial number for surveilance is that the range is limited, signals intended for the interior of the car/truck, and the body of the vehicle acts like a Faraday cage.

  17. What Bluetooth are they trying to read? I keep it turned off on my phone…

    Most new cars have Bluetooth capability which is constantly broadcasting. The problem with using the serial number for surveilance is that the range is limited, signals intended for the interior of the car/truck, and the body of the vehicle acts like a Faraday cage.

    For a moment I was wondering if license plates now had an RFID chip in them. Then I said no way, too much cost to keep it from getting damaged in the car wash.

  18. For now, the Bluetooth is mostly used to determine traffic speed so lossy reads are ok.

    Indiana spent a lot of money on the cameras, but it is a busy corridor so maybe it’s worth it.

    Wrt Illinois and their finances, people keep working for them… They must believe they’ll be paid.

    N

  19. Wrt Illinois and their finances, people keep working for them… They must believe they’ll be paid.

    The courts will make sure that Illinois payrolls and pension promises are maintained, but vendors and bondholders will get stiffed as they did in Detroit.

    What I noticed when we were there in March is that, for now, the closer you are to the DuSable bridge, the better things seem to work in the city/county/state.

  20. For a moment I was wondering if license plates now had an RFID chip in them. Then I said no way, too much cost to keep it from getting damaged in the car wash.

    California has experiments underway with electronic plates featuring E-paper (think Kindle) displays which display different information depending on signals received from law enforcement, toll plazas, etc.

    My guess is that the problem with RFID is range issues again. The Amazon Go store we hit daily on our Spring Break trip didn’t use RFID (as far as I could tell) and instead seemed to depend on shelf weight and a 3D model of people and product in the store built using stereo cameras feeding a beefy server similar to how we do ORT (open road tolling).

    If there was RFID in use, they need a new system. Twice we checked out and something was missing from the charges when I got the email receipt.

  21. Wrt Illinois and their finances, people keep working for them… They must believe they’ll be paid.

    Most people will not leave a place until it is on fire. Illinois is not on fire. Yet.

  22. Most people will not leave a place until it is on fire. Illinois is not on fire. Yet.

    When we were there in March, Streeterville — think Bob Newhart’s office building on the original 70s TV show — and, running north from there, the Gold Coast — where Newhart’s character lived — still seemed like lovely places. As long as someone shows up in the morning to open the Tar-jay and stores along Michigan avenue (Look! A Uniqlo!), the folks living there will happily vote Socialist, just like they did for Mayor in March.

    Ironically, the train station for the future site of Doh-bama’s Presidential library is the poster child for the dysfunction taking hold in the city, the one right behind the AKA sorority HQ building (cough).

    Bob Hartley probably retired to FL. Fort Myers/Naples, along with half of the Chicago PD.

    A hiccup in IL pensions would probably be worse for AZ, TX, and FL than for IL directly.

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