Tues. Dec. 14, 2020 – feeling even worse

Warm and damp. So damp. 69F and raining.

We had still air and fog when I went to bed last night. Everything was wet with dew. Drizzle all day too.

I’m feeling more under the weather every day. I might even go to the doctor. Nose is starting to run, and I’m sneezing as well as coughing now. Joy.

More of the same for me to do today. At least I am starting to sell some stuff on ebay again. I just have to keep listing… and I think their algorithm rewards sales with better ranking as a sort of self fulfilling prophesy.

The world continues on, flailing towards a great reset.

I have been watching gardening videos. I’m definitely trying some potatoes this year. The “Farmer Boy” Laura Ingalls Wilder book that I’m currently reading with the little one just went through their harvest. LOTS of apples, carrots, potatoes, and grains. Many mentions of watermelon rind pickles. They race to get the potatoes harvested before the ground freezes. All the harvest described has me thinking of my own garden… and how unsuccessful I’ve been and how inadequate my harvests. I’ve got to do better this year.

But first, get the kids and wife out the door.


Author: Nick Flandrey

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

42 thoughts on “Tues. Dec. 14, 2020 – feeling even worse”

  1. Meanwhile, in the gun free paradise of Mexico–


    I love the matter of fact-ness admissions hidden in the reporting.

    “Ruthless drug lord called ‘La Catrina’, 21, who led the nation’s most powerful hit squad ”

    “Mexico’s most powerful cartel attacked security forces”

    “ambush that left 14 cops dead and nine other injured”

    –does the US have roving cartel ‘hit squads’?
    –are they ambushing cops in the dozens?
    –does the US find charnel pits full of dismembered remains?



    “US driver narrowly escapes drug cartel blockade”

    “Nuevo Laredo has seen a number of recent shootouts and kidnappings as drug cartels compete to control the drug trade”

    — I had someone assure me just last night that Mexico City was “just like any other big city” wrt crime and danger… right.


    added– forgot this one too-


    “School teacher is laid to rest after she was shot dead by an 11-year-old student, who killed himself and wounded five students and another teacher in Mexico

    María Medina, the 50-year-old teacher shot dead by 11-year-old student José Ángel Ramos on Friday in Mexico, was laid to rest Sunday”

    –but I thought school shootings only happened in America, by white boys.
    –One gun store in ALL of Mexico. ONE.

  2. Hey, Apple could move phone plants back to CA and build barracks for all the homeless that will assemble said phones. Amazon, too. They could build barracks at their slave labor warehouses. Soon, those company could open stores for their slaves and issue chits to buy everything they need. China 2.0

  3. Re California SB50, just another urban-centric prog bad dream that won’t work. Smells like projects to me. Walkable neighborhoods: I have seen them, and they are great. Just don’t try to do any shopping, because all the stores are off in the distance. With the trend toward bigger stores, they will be fewer and farther apart. Can’t solve that by adding housing regulations. Just a bad dream.

    If CA wants more affordable housing, two aspects come to mind. First, encourage rural development where costs are lower. Yeah, that won’t work, because the people they are targeting don’t seem to have the self starter mentality to own their homes. Maybe they belong in dorms. And, building; recent experience showed me the real cost driver: regulations. Some of these are good, but most of the ones I have reviewed are just bad dreams. Take Title 24, please. It is supposed to foster reduction in lighting electrical energy consumption. If I were to fully comply with it, my electric bill would skyrocket, not to mention the cost of compliance. What are these idiots thinking? One example is the requirement to use “vacancy sensors” to turn off lights minutes after a room seems to have no activity. This encourages the mentality to just leave things ON. Just turn off the damn light when you leave!

    End rant. Now, I seem to be awake. (not awoke, if that is a word. Woke? Woken?? Enough!)

  4. I missed this article about the wonderful, very fine folks south of the border–

    “Severed heads of suspected cartel victims are dumped on streets of Mexican tourist hotspot Cancun alongside death threats to law officials

    A woman found three severed heads in abandoned area in Benito Juarez, Cancun
    The 22-year-old was walking to work when she made the gruesome discovery
    Banner was left at scene making threats to prosecutors and judicial members
    One cartel in the area has links to the Sinaloa Cartel, formerly led by ‘El Chapo'”

    –Cancun. Tourist area. Cash cow. And still heads in the street.

  5. Hey, Apple could move phone plants back to CA and build barracks for all the homeless that will assemble said phones. Amazon, too. They could build barracks at their slave labor warehouses. Soon, those company could open stores for their slaves and issue chits to buy everything they need. China 2.0

    The homeless are mentally ill drug addicts. Had supper Saturday night with friends who are in town for fighting his esophageal cancer at MDACC. Their youngest daughter has been homeless in LA, living behind a Jack-in-the-box for the last five years. She is a heroin addict along with her boyfriend. They steal stuff, sell it, and get high. Rinse, repeat every freaking day.

    CA makes things worse by giving them all kinds of bennies such as $350/month food stamps, etc, etc. She and her boyfriend got arrested earlier this year and spent three months in jail. She is back in rehab for umpteenth time on probation now and has promised them that she is going straight this time. I just cannot see these people being functional on heroin. Sleeping on gravel while high is pretty low with the only goal in life being the next high.

  6. “Key air permits granted for $9.4B Formosa Plastics complex in St. James Parish; opponents promise fight”

    This plant will probably look exactly like the $10 billion plant in Point Comfort, Texas. It is about five miles away from my parents house. My parents enjoy watching it as it is a ten square mile ant hill with all of the activity.

    Cheap natural gas and safe working / living conditions is driving all of the chemical plant expansion to the USA. Specifically the Gulf Coast. I have lost count at the number of $10 billion plants built in the last ten years on the Gulf Coast. Maybe 40. Maybe 50.

  7. _The Valley of Shadows (6) (Black Tide Rising)_ by John Ringo and Mike Massa

    Book number six of a nine book zombie apocalypse series. I read the well printed and bound MMPB published by Baen. I will purchase and read the future books in the series as they come out in MMPB.

    How do you keep a large international bank running during a zombie apocalypse in a large city like New York City ? Ringo and Massa explore this in depth as the various elements in the city struggle with the populace turning into zombies, slowly at first, and then a cascade at the end. What are the moral issues of turning the infected into vaccine ? And, the profits !

    John Ringo wrote the first four books in the series on his own. Now he has brought in an entire hoard of authors to flesh out the series. For those who do not know, John Ringo’s zombie apocalypse was started by a rogue biologist who integrated a rabies virus payload into a flu virus, H7D3. The airborne incubation period is about a week or so. The saliva incubation period is less than a day. The resulting mess is a total top brain blowout. Nasty.

    My rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars
    Amazon rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars (266 reviews)

  8. Bernie said what?

    That Bernie Bro slipped up talking about the camps.

    Most people will go voluntarily. The camps will have WiFi and streaming services; online access outside the camps will be dial Internet.

    Surrender your guns at the door to be made into peace necklaces … just like “Zombieland 2” — lots of fun inside the barbed wired until the T800s show up.

  9. Most people will go voluntarily. The camps will have WiFi and streaming services; online access outside the camps will be dial Internet.

    I don’t watch much TV, and have slooow Internet. Shrug.

    Besides, “freedom” is delicious. Maybe it will be better when XX% are inside and the few of us have all the outside.

  10. Dadgum RINOs. And Mitt Romney should know better.

    Collins is up for reelection and in trouble this year. Mittens has daddy issues and still feels snubbed over the Secretary of State gig. The rest are waiting for their deals.

    The Dems running for President are the wild card. Clinton’s trial was five weeks, and the Senators couldn’t leave their desks or use their cell phones during testimony. Roberts will probably impose the same rules as 20 years ago. Granted, Plugs isn’t in the Senate so he’ll have the advantage on the campaign trail for that time but does he really want Plugs Jr. on the stand?

    Plugs Jr. doesn’t strike me as bright enough to take on the most likely roster of Republican managers on direct examination when they call him.

  11. Am I imagining that since AOC showed up in her skinny dresses with the prominent forward beacons that Nancy Pelosi now has prominent forward beacons also ?

    Please. Stretch alternates time at home up at UCSF, shuttling between the building housing the cutting edge plastic surgeons and the dementia research lab where she stocks up on the latest experimental meds, trying to stave off the inevitable.

  12. I had a thought.

    The closet door in the bath room swings into the closet. The screws on the doorknob are on the in side of the door. I have had door knobs break. If this door is latched and breaks, ah, no clean clothes for me. Not a problem in Texas during the summer. 🙂 I turned the door knob around. Odds are it will never break but better safe than sorry.
    I think I’ll do the same to the bedrooms.

  13. If this door is latched and breaks

    What, you don’t have a chainsaw? A sledgehammer?

  14. What, you don’t have a chainsaw? A sledgehammer?

    I do! Two chainsaws. One gas, one electric.
    No wait, THREE chainsaws counting the tree trimmer attachment.

    I don’t know where the sledgehammer is hiding.

  15. Another thought.

    I looked on Google to see how to preserve fat. Bacon and meat drippings. I expected to see something along the lines of “strain well and add a pinch of saltpetre” but nothing like that. Plenty of scolds out there saying “you will die” if the stuff isn’t frozen and older than six months.

    Meh. Everyone is so fragile now a days.

    One site suggested pressure canning for 90 to 120 minutes at 10 psi. Like canning meat. It’s an idea.

  16. HA! Chainsaw was my first idea too. However a putty knife between the door frame and jam might be a little cleaner.

  17. They used to use fat to preserve other food, called “potting” or “potted meat.”

    Strain the fat, make sure it was hot enough to sterilize, pour into a sealable container, keep air away.

    I’ve got lard that is plenty old in the freezer. I”ve got bacon fat in the can on the counter. I’m pretty sure the fat at the bottom is over 6 months old. Occasionally I put the can on the hot stove and let it melt the whole can again. It’s flakey and white on the top…

    Mmmmm, bacon.


  18. Nancy Pelosi now has prominent forward beacons also ?

    It’s where she keeps her brains when she is not sitting on her brains.

  19. I’m feeling more under the weather every day. I might even go to the doctor. Nose is starting to run, and I’m sneezing as well as coughing now. Joy.

    One of my employees has been coughing for a week now. He did not show up today. And another one is coughing too. Lovely.

  20. HA! Chainsaw was my first idea too. However a putty knife between the door frame and jam might be a little cleaner.

    Yes, but even the word “chainsaw” is so much fun. My first though was that Paul might keep his hammers and chainsaws in the bedroom. Shame on me. 🙂

  21. Its the plague

    If Nick didn’t see that comic before Lynn, there is definitely some wierdness around here!

  22. @Greg, this comic is for you !

    They forgot the never ending expansion of the Austin airport. At this point, I think it is similar to the Winchester Mystery House, where the people in charge are trying to confuse the spirits … and travelers.

    I just hope we get the hovercraft soon ! Before I die would be awesome !

    You know, the person who figures out anti-gravity is going to be a billionaire. Maybe a trillionaire.

  23. Keep Austin Weird !

    Lynn, you sure can find ’em!

    I stole it off another board that I haunt when I am suppose to be fixing bugs and writing marketing materials. My life is so awesome.

  24. Well, waddayaknow…

    I’m going thru bills, shipping and purchasing invoices, and generally digging around on my desk. I found the box for my samsung S7 and it has all the stuff I didn’t get with my S10e- headphones, USBtoGO, official charger, etc. I apparently opened the box, took out the phone, and left it there for at least 2 years. Never went back for the stuff. Never cleared that part of my desk. (FWIW, my desk is 12 feet long, with two work areas, and it was in the pile between the two areas.)

    I’m chuffed!


  25. More Mexicans behaving badly…

    live by the sword, die by the sword.


    “Bride whose brother is a notorious Mexican cartel leader is assassinated at her own wedding and her husband-to-be is abducted by rival gang

    Gunmen allegedly tied to the Jalisco New Generation Cartel attacked a wedding Saturday, killing the sister of leader of the Santa Rosa de Lima Cartel
    Karem Lizbeth Yépez Ortiz was at the altar with her soon-to-be-husband, a fellow cartel member known as ‘El Calamardo,’ when shots rang in the middle of mass
    The attackers kidnapped the groom and another person before fleeing the church in Celaya, Guanajuato
    The shooting also claimed the life of an innocent bystander, an 18-year-old man who had passed by the church aboard his motorcycle”

    –I know, let’s bring that shit to Cleveland, said no one sane, ever.


  26. I need to vent… Last year, I wrote the final exam for the first-semester programming course. This year, it’s someone else’s turn. A woman, which is unfortunately relevant to the story.

    A bit of background: Our college is very “hands-on”, with a very practical orientation. One aspect of this is that instructors are required to have substantial real-world experience before being hired. The woman writing the exam applied for her instructor position straight out of graduate school. No work experience outside of an academic environment. I remember the discussions: A clear-cut case, she’s not qualified. We gotta have more women in tech! They hired her.

    This exam is one aspect of the result. The problems are so unrealistic that they are utterly confusing. No one who ever wrote a real specification or produced real software would make these kinds of mistakes.

    Just a couple of examples: Did you know that the power required by a traffic light is the power required by all bulbs (even though they are never on simultaneously) multiplied by the time they are on? Did you know that; in addition to red, yellow and green; “black” is a color of a light?

    Also: she has clearly never actually executed the sample code in the exam, because it doesn’t work.

    I sent off my comments. She will be insulted. I will get a reply full of injured innocence. Which will be genuine, because she really doesn’t understand that ambiguity and imprecision in specifications are not only bad on an exam, but actual real-world disasters.

    I’m frustrated, because this was actually the second round of comments. The result after she took the first comments on board was, if anything, worse. It makes me wonder what goes on in her classroom. There’s a reason that instructors are supposed to have real-world experience.

  27. @brad, that is unfortunate. I spent a little more than 6 years getting my degree. In the process I had 3 majors, and attended 3 schools. I can see the roots of today’s issues if I look back (84 – 90). The was a short couple of classes a few years later in my local Cali Community College. They replaced a very experienced instructor with a lifetime of work in television, with a young guy who had some work in theater. The two fields are NOT the same. But the old guy was crusty, and expected students to work. The young guy was better suited to the proto-snowflake’s attitudes.

    In the process, they destroyed a useful hands on training program that prepared the kids for work in the real world.


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