Fri. Sept. 4, 2020 – wow, the week zipped by

Slightly less hot, less humid- unless it rains.  Might be on the edge of a system and see some rain.

I spent yesterday morning on tax paperwork, and in the afternoon I worked on my gennies.

So I now have one working generator, one that runs but still needs a bit of love, and the big one that is still sitting there.

Most of the parts for my generators came in and it was not stifling hot out, so I headed out to get my hands dirty.   I started with the Honda eu3000is.  I replaced the O ring in the carb, cleaned the gas petcock, sediment bowl, and cut off the in tank fuel filter. Since I had to drain the tank for that, I wiped out the whole tank.  There was a little sediment, but the tank is designed with space below the petcock for sediment and water to collect.   Honda puts a lot of nice design touches on their high end product.   After that I tried to fire it up, without success, but when I looked in the tank, I noticed that the gas I used was cloudy with water.  Got that out, got a new can of clean gas.  Put that in.  Tried again, and it started on the first pull.  Now it runs. So I also replaced the spark plug. The fuel level indicator and battery arrived while I was working and I didn’t know, so those will go in later.

The problem now is rough running due to too much fuel. And when I use the bowl drain, there is air in the fuel coming out, so maybe there is air in the fuel line. Not sure where that could be coming in, maybe I’ve got a tiny leak around the petcock, or maybe the flow rate without the fuel filter, and with only a little fuel in the tank allows air to get sucked in with the fuel…  I can get it to run well by almost closing the petcock. Removing the air filter and box doesn’t make much difference, so I think it’s too much fuel, not too little air. I suspect someone adjusted the carb to run with the blocked fuel filter, and now it’s way too rich. Problem is, I don’t see how to adjust the mixture. Off to youtube I guess.  I’m not doing anything tricky until I have a new fuel filter installed anyway.

I shifted over to the old generac and cleaned the fuel tank out. I ordered a ‘dryer hose lint brush’ which is a round brush on a very flexible shaft to use as a scrub brush inside the tank. It’s a plastic tank but had sludge and some rust in it. The lint brush on  a cordless drill worked very well.  I’ll be using it on other tanks I’m sure.  Several rinses with old gas and it was sparkling inside. I installed the new petcock, put the tank back on and tore into the carb. I was expecting carb trouble since I didn’t drain it. And I was right. Water got in, and there was rust in the main chamber which froze the throttle plate closed. Most of a can of carb cleaner spray, some judicious scraping with a pick, some scrubbing with a pad, a couple of jets removed and cleaned, and everything went back together. It started on the second pull and ran smooth. I installed the new gas cap /fuel level indicator. It’s about 1/4 inch too long, but it works. I’ll change the oil and spark plug later. For now though, I’ve got a running gennie again. That gennie was a Y2K purchase, and first got used during Rita. It ran daily for 14 days during Ike. Still runs great with essentially no maintenance other than the obligatory carb cleanings. Heck, it sits outside most of the time. They don’t make them like that anymore.

Small engine repair, achievement unlocked.

I still need to have someone come out and get the big gennie running and connected.

Baby steps.  Making forward progress though.

I’m supposed to take a load to my industrial auctioneer today.  I have to call him first, which will give him a chance to beg off, and my wife needs to go to the office for a couple hours, right in the middle of the day, which blocks me from leaving the house for that time.  I really hope I can get a load delivered given all that.  I’ve still got a big pile of stuff waiting to go to my more ‘household and estate’ auctioneer too.  They’ve been so busy with off site auctions that they’ve had no time for my consignments.  Stuff is piling up waiting to leave, and it adds to everyone’s stress level.

I put the remote sensors in the freezer part of my new fridge/freezer, and in my “new” upright.   Stuck the receiver/display on the metal back door of the house.  It’s reading current temps (3F and 4F) and my next step is setting alarms.  I guess I’ll have to read the tiny little instructions… at least I can see the temps in all three freezer compartments and the fridge compartment without opening the doors now.

I guess I’ll be looking at the danged dishwasher next too.  There is always more to be done.

I consider it all practice for hard times.  (which are coming, btw…)  I’ve watched a lot of youtube vids of small engine repairs, electronic repairs, car repairs, even shoe repairs…  I’ve done a bunch of it too, learning the stuff they invariably leave out.  Most of it doesn’t take a bunch of tools, or a giant brain.  It does take a willingness to try and a humbleness to be open to learning how.  Try something outside your comfort zone.  The rewards go beyond saving money.

We’ve got robots and machines as force multipliers all around us.  We need to keep them running though, if they are to help.  Doing at least some of it yourself makes you more resilient, more ‘anti-fragile’, less a pawn, more independent.  And you’ll find a whole new list of stuff to keep stacking.

nick

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

50 thoughts on “Fri. Sept. 4, 2020 – wow, the week zipped by”

  1. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8696139/Antifa-protester-linked-shooting-death-Patriot-Prayer-supporter-claims-self-defense.html

    The URL doesn’t match the headline….

    Antifa gunman wanted for shooting dead pro-Trump activist in Portland is killed in shootout with marshals after he ‘opened fire with an assault rifle’ as officers tried to arrest him

    WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
    Michael Reinoehl, 48, died Thursday as US Marshals moved to arrest him at his hideout in Washington State
    Police say Reinoehl was armed with a gun and ran out of an apartment but they’ve yet to confirm if he fired
    Witnesses say the suspect opened fire on police with a semi-automatic rifle, letting off 40 or 50 shots
    He had just broken his silence in video interview with Vice News where he claimed he ‘acted in self defense’
    Portland Police reportedly suspect him in the fatal shooting of Aaron Danielson which happened on Saturday
    Danielson was leaving a rally supporting President Donald Trump when he was shot dead in the street

    n

  2. When the service is free, you’re the product…

    Robinhood Markets Inc faces a probe by US Securities and Exchange Commission over its early failure to fully disclose its practice of selling clients’ orders to high-speed traders.

    (and they provide a nice pool of ‘bigger fools’ and ‘bagholders’ to the sharks on wall street.)

    The disclaimer lays out the situation. The bigger problem with Robinhood is that they employ the same kind of Psych PhDs that make social media addictive, turning the market into a fetish game, and they’re still privately funded by private equity hoping to land the same “first mover” advantage that ensconced the FANGs in our daily lives.

    The “Made Men” in the racket (Fidelity, Schwab, BofA/Merrill Lynch) probably asked for Robinhood to get the rectal probe. No one can afford to run a sophisticated trading site on zero commission trades.

    Schwab has a whole building full of developers down the freeway from my house who work on the web site from what I understand.

  3. Tyler Durden cowardice, but good news.

    Lacey, WA, Pierce County — another frequent location for “Cops” over the years, just north of the state capital.

    Consider yourselves warned — the Progs in WA State who leech off various levels of government for a living up and down the I-5 corridor are armed. I’ve never seen a bigger gun section in a Cabela’s than the one in Lacey. Even the flagship Cabela’s gun section in Nebraska seemed smaller to me when I stopped 10 years ago.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/political/i-had-no-choice-i-mean-i-had-choice-portland-suspect-murder-trump-supporter-claims-self

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  4. Huh, power just went out for about 30 seconds.

    And I got this from ebay today.

    Your eBay journey

    Fun firsts, big wins, and memories made together.

    Joined

    You registered as [my other online persona] on 4-10-2000!

    First purchase

    You scored Samsung HYDRA USB Data Cable: A500 N400 N240 on 1-18-2003.

    First sale

    You cashed out with P3 1.0Ghz processor 1.75v (CPU PIII) on 2-7-2005.

    Took me 3 years to buy something and another 2 years before I sold anything.

    And I’ve had the account for 20 YEARS. Crazy. Wish I’d listened to my wife and got going with bitcoin back in the day too.

    n

  5. Another race faker, lying sack….

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8696547/GWU-professor-pretended-black-went-fee-paying-school-planned-flag-burning.html

    Jessica Krug, 38, left, revealed on Thursday that she has lied about being black her entire career and admitted to deceiving her friends and colleagues. She said in the blog post that she is white, Jewish and was raised in Kansas City. Now DailyMail.com can exclusively reveal how Krug went to the exclusive Barstow school in Kansas City where she was described as ‘very political’. Former classmates said she identified as a white, Jewish girl. They said Krug, right and inset at school, boycotted prom and planned a flag burning, graduating in 1999.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8695559/George-Washington-University-professor-says-lied-black.html

    Jessica Krug, an African history associate professor at George Washington University, revealed on Thursday that she has falsely claimed to be black throughout her career.

    n

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  6. The URL doesn’t match the headline….

    The carpet doesn’t match the drapes?

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  7. “You cashed out with P3 1.0Ghz processor 1.75v (CPU PIII) on 2-7-2005.”

    Took me 3 years to buy something and another 2 years before I sold anything.

    And I’ve had the account for 20 YEARS. Crazy. Wish I’d listened to my wife and got going with bitcoin back in the day too.

    You could probably still sell the PIII for decent money. IIRC, Google runs a bunch of them.

    Sadly Intel crippled the PIII chipsets with a stupid memory limit, and the bad power cap problem of 2007 took out a big chunk of the motherboards in circulation. Google uses custom motherboard designs they manufacture themselves.

  8. I guess I’ll have to read the tiny little instructions…

    First thing I do when I get anything new is DL the instructions. Then I can read them on my nice big screen or my phone, whichever is handier.

    I also start a log file to record as much as I can. This file grows with time, and I have everything handy for reference. I have some wireless thermometers that require a specific sequence to start up after changing batteries, and I save time by consulting my notes.

  9. @all:

    ESR has posted about the Rittenhouse situation, wherein he cites chapter and verse about a citizen’s obligations.

    Kyle Rittenhouse is a 17-year-old male and thus a member of the unorganized militia under black-letter Federal law. When he armed up to defend a friend’s business during a breakdown in civil order, he was acting precisely as all members of the unorganized militia have a legal and Constitutional duty to act in like circumstances.

    I suspect none of the media will even breathe a word about this. What say you?

    G.

    added: And I note that the text box to enter a personal website URL has gone away.

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  10. Another race faker, lying sack….

    Fullbright scholar. The irony is that William Fullbright, Clinton role model, was a rabid segregationist who, along with Albert Gore *Sr.* refused to support Lyndon Johnson on the civil rights legislation initiatives in the 60s, forcing Johnson to cut a deal with “racist” Republicans to get the bills passed.

  11. And I note that the text box to enter a personal website URL has gone away.

    But the text that refers to it has not. 😉

  12. “What say you?”

    –under a strict original literal understanding of the 2A EVERY gun law on the books is un-Constitutional. “Shall not be infringed” is pretty clear. There are other amendments where the founders set limits, in the 2nd they did not. “Well regulated” could be considered a limit, but the words did not mean what we understand “regulated” to mean today, ie it doesn’t mean “controlled by regulations”. Many of the founders were very clear that their intent was to be certain that citizens were never denied the right to arms.

    n

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  13. @nick
    willingness to try and a humbleness to be open to learning how. Try something outside your comfort zone. …. makes you more resilient
    This. +1,000

    I’ve enjoyed the troubleshooting you’ve shared RE: the generator. I love working on my hands and hearing about someone else fixing something is nearly as satisfying.


  14. First thing I do when I get anything new is DL the instructions. Then I can read them on my nice big screen or my phone, whichever is handier.

    I also do this. PDFs stuffed in Apple Books (shared on all devices). I also have a Dropbox folder called “Manuals” where I put everything I can find.

    Some small items don’t have an online manual. Through the scanner it goes even if I have to rip the pages apart. OCR’d after that.

    I also download a great online video of something and stuff that into DB. For posterity.

  15. Scanning – I have ‘Turbo Scan’ installed on my iPhone. I believe they have an Android version.
    I consider it one of the most essential tools on my phone. I use it if not daily, then close to it. It will automatically snap the pic when it detects the edges / thing is in focus, allowing pretty efficient capturing. It automatically deskews. You can adjust the frame if the auto-detect is wrong. I’ve used it to capture photos, homework to mail back to instructor, manuals, etc. PDF is incorporated in the tool as is emailing. I think it was $2.99 when I paid for the pro version, I would easily pay $20.

    Very handy.

  16. Scanning – I have ‘Turbo Scan’ installed on my iPhone. I believe they have an Android version.
    I consider it one of the most essential tools on my phone. I use it if not daily, then close to it. It will automatically snap the pic when it detects the edges / thing is in focus, allowing pretty efficient capturing. It automatically deskews. You can adjust the frame if the auto-detect is wrong. I’ve used it to capture photos, homework to mail back to instructor, manuals, etc. PDF is incorporated in the tool as is emailing. I think it was $2.99 when I paid for the pro version, I would easily pay $20.

    Very handy.

  17. @jenny:

    Is that TurboScan by Piksoft? I use Android, and the number of “Turboscan”s is legion. I’m tempted by this, since my AIO inkjet has just blown up.

    G.

  18. Ms. Jenny, Mr. Geoff:

    I’ve used Scanner Pro for iOS for years. The latest version has “workflows” so I can upload scans to various folders on Dropbox by using the workflow. I use it a lot for biz and personal stuff and can quickly sort stuff. It also OCRs scans.

    I also have a Fujitu ScanSnap for bulk docs on my desk. I’ve had one of these for years since I scan all biz docs for posterity.

  19. Heavy downpour. Not gonna do my auction drop off, probably not doing any generator or outdoor work either. Dang.

    n

  20. Thanks for the scanner and OCR tips. I will be in the market for a serious sheet fed scanner in a few months. I have read good things about Fujitsu scanners, but will consider others. This is for Windows 10.

    I will also take a look at Android scan software for occasional scans of a few pages. I didn’t know there was anything for a phone that could deskew. I suppose OCR would be asking too much.

  21. It hasn’t rained today, meaning that I should be able to mow my lawn, but it may be too hot — 75F and sunny. How can anyone be expected to go out into a furnace like that?

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  22. Burn in h- oh, no, but wear a hat and light colored loose fitting clothes…

    n

  23. These students figured out their tests were graded by AI — and the easy way to cheat:

    “He was like, I’m gonna have to get a 100 on all the rest of this to make up for this,” said Simmons in a phone interview with The Verge. “He was totally dejected.”

    At first, Simmons tried to console her son. “I was like well, you know, some teachers grade really harshly at the beginning,” said Simmons, who is a history professor herself. Then, Lazare clarified that he’d received his grade less than a second after submitting his answers. A teacher couldn’t have read his response in that time, Simmons knew — her son was being graded by an algorithm.

    Simmons watched Lazare complete more assignments. She looked at the correct answers, which Edgenuity revealed at the end. She surmised that Edgenuity’s AI was scanning for specific keywords that it expected to see in students’ answers. And she decided to game it.

    I’m gonna let a history prof saying “He was like …” pass … for now. 🙂

  24. …75F and sunny. How can anyone be expected to go out into a furnace like that?

    Channeling OFD.

  25. @Geoff
    Yes, TurboScan is by Piksoft

    @Chad / MrAtoz
    I’ll take a look at those products. Always cool to see what other developers are building.

    @JimB
    My entry into the IT field was running a document scanner in the early 1990’s. Tedious and prone to failure. Windows for Workgroups maybe? We used the old Windows Recorder macro tool a lot to automate the repetitive parts of the work. The mainframe guys would shrug and send me home when I requested aid. Third or fourth time that happened I got their ok to take a crack at fixing it. They seemed amused at my confession that I knew nothing about it but since it was broke I couldn’t make it worse and wanted to get paid at any rate. Coming in early and picking the brains of the Windows guys helped lift me out of my depths of ignorance, as did a sincere desire to earn the bucks to pay my rent.

    We had a monster Bell & Howell that was an angry hungry monster and would violently snatch paper from the feeder. It was robust and FAST. That was everyone’s preferred machine even though it seemed capable of inflicting injury to the careless. The kinder gentler slower scanner was a Fujitsu. It got the job done and didn’t threaten to snatch your fingerprints (or worse) from the hand feeding it. Few of us used it and we’d come in early to vie for the B&H. Fun times on swing shift.

    Not particularly useful for your current plight.

    @SteveF
    75F and sunny. … into a furnace like that
    I’m cracking up. That’s precisely how I feel about the 70’s anymore. Long ways from my CA childhood when 80 was sweater weather.


  26. Burn in h-

    Haha.

    wear a hat and light colored loose fitting clothes…

    Meh. I’m tanned enough that I won’t burn in an hour.

  27. @Jenny:

    Thanks for that.

    @all:

    I have a Fujitsu Scansnap (in fact 2 of them, an S1300, and an S1300i) and for scanning loose flat sheets, they’re superb. But if you want to do anything other than archive image .pdfs, they will refuse to do anyhing but print if the ,pdf isn’t of their making. Specifically, I have recently been on a mission to scan-and-OCR a number of set books for No. 2 daughter, who is a primary school teacher, and wants to make lesson materials from them. Of course, a sheet-fed scanner is useless for scanning bound volumes, so I had to scan on a flatbed. But the OCR software that came with the flatbed (a Brother AIO) was worse than useless – it didn’t work.

    Attempting to import Brother-scanned .pdfs didn’t work for Scansnap because of an error, something on the lines of “Not a Scansnap file”. Scansnap software doesn’t recognise anything but Fujitsu scanners, so that’s a bust. And Fujitsu flatbeds go for silly money in a home environment – businesses can probably justify it.

    So I was forced to scan-and-print from the AIO, before rescanning the flat sheets into Word from the Scansnap – which worked, but was clunky in the extreme.

    But needs must whan a daughter drives…

    G.

  28. These students figured out their tests were graded by AI — and the easy way to cheat:

    During my first semester in grad school in Vantucky, I ended up TA for the new Software Engineering professor, tasked to grade the 20+ page IEEE format design document submissions, of which there were five assigned during the semester to 46 students. Do the math.

    After conscientiously reading the first round of 46 documents, I figured out pretty quickly who was serious and who wasn’t, and I’ll admit to grading the rest using the word counter and spelling/grammar checkers in Word, spot checking the format.

    Did I feel guilty? Yeah, kinda … until the professor threw me under the bus after the class bombed her midterm and she blamed me for the grading when I never saw the tests, just proctored the exam session. The professor was tenure track, and the student evaluations count *a lot* in WA State — she wanted to be their friend.

    Now I don’t feel a shred of guilt since the professor is director of the department.

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  29. Sheesh. The ice maker is suddenly acting like it stripped a tooth from a gear. I don’t actually care, all I use ice for is to cool boiled eggs. But the complaining….. It starts clunking and if you give the cube ejection arm blade thing a gentle tug, it engages and all is well. Until the next cycle.
    It’s a replacement. $38 eight years ago.

    For that kind of money, I just ordered another. $46 and maybe half an hour to install it including beer time. Not bad at all considering inflation.

    Ok, for a fridge I bought in mid-September 2000, a couple of ice makers and a defrost thermostat for about $35, I have no complaints. Still not a fan of the glass shelves. You know all that “stuff” that looks like crumbs under the crisper drawers? Yeah, still get it with glass shelves.

    The defrost thermostat is behind the back wall of the freezer section. It snaps onto the coils. So the timer kicks into defrost, and the t-stat controls the heater. Bad t-stat means no heat, and the whole air system frosts up. Cold freezer, warm beer, not good. The hard part of that little job was figuring it out. The Internet is both useful and retarded. McGyver strikes again.

    The crazy thing is that I bought the fridge 20 years ago to replace the suddenly dead fridge…. that came to life when I bumped the back wall while removing the shelves. I had it plugged in because the light worked. 🙂 Yep, defrost timer. I heard it click. Maybe $35 with a trip to Austin for the part, a burger from Short Stop, and the fridge still works.
    Jeeze, I think I bought the old fridge in 1983. It was A BIG DEAL to leave the garage unlocked so the folks from Sears could deliver it. And they finally did, a week late. “The truck broke.” For a fridge coming from a warehouse in San Antonio. We would have made the the trip to SA.

    Anyway. All of 85F today. Sticky. Better than 105F. It looks like rain, the light has that color, but doesn’t smell like rain.

    And what the heck. I have an almost 40 year old fridge. I’m turning into my Granmama.

    Added: The current fridge is also from Sears. I got the song and dance of “gonna take two weeks to deliver” and you know what? “Deliver this floor model TODAY because keeping milk and stuff in an ice chest on my kitchen floor is not on my schedule.” It worked. I paid and they delivered a few hours later.


  30. Specifically, I have recently been on a mission to scan-and-OCR a number of set books for No. 2 daughter, who is a primary school teacher, and wants to make lesson materials from them. Of course, a sheet-fed scanner is useless for scanning bound volumes, so I had to scan on a flatbed.

    Been there, done that. I went through a long year of doing this for my wife’s PhD. I used a relatively inexpensive canon scanner to get the pages in pdf format. This was in the middle of win 7 to win 8 transition with all the device driver support changing. Canon is rock solid in supporting their software.

    For the OCR part I used Omnipage SE by Scansoft that came with one of the scanners or MFPs. That is a 2004 product and still works great for me. That was win2000 winxp software and is still running ok in Win10.

    You are a good father. This process entails a lot of work.

  31. I replaced the heater in the freezer (which sounds completely imbecilic) a year or two ago. Not expensive and not hard to do, but figuring out why the refrigerator side was warm and the freezer side was leaking onto the kitchen floor took a while. GE fridge, eight or nine years old at the time.

    I prefer the clear glass shelves in the fridge. I prefer to be able to see spills and mildew and crumbs so I can clean it, rather than derp along in happy ignorance until a fuzz monster makes itself known.

    By the way, I didn’t die of heat stroke despite the temperature being a beastly 78F rather than the projected 75F when I mowed.

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  32. Cannon may be rock solid. Epson sucks.

    No, I don’t want to set up an XP box. Why do they not have Win7 drivers?

    I have a boatload of pictures I would like to scan, the Epson driver lets you cover the glass with photos and somehow makes each picture a separate file.

  33. I bought a replacement heater for my fridge. That’s $50 on the shelf in the feed shed. Silly thing looked like “pull the evaporator to replace the heater”, think car a/c with an oven element between the rows of fins.

    By the way, I didn’t die of heat stroke despite the temperature being a beastly 78F rather than the projected 75F when I mowed.

    That’s good.

  34. I was joking when complaining about the heat, in case it wasn’t obvious. I don’t sweat [sic] things like the weather. It’s unpleasant to push the mower when it’s 90F/80% and it’s unpleasant to shovel snow at 0F with a 20 knot wind, but until it gets to heat stroke or frostbite I don’t worry much about it.

  35. The inch of rain knocked the temp down dramatically. Didn’t do my work plan any good as I fell asleep at my desk. D’oh.

    Currently cooking dinner. Thick slices of onion with oil and seasoning, and two baked potatoes on the grill for the last 30 minutes. Steaks soon to join them.

    n

  36. It’s a chilly 83F here at the moment.

    Some blue sky with partial cloudy overcast.

    My weather station says .43 inches, but the buckets in the yard say about 1 inch of rain.

    My auction drop off got pushed to next Thursday. Grrr.

    n

  37. Steaks soon to join them.

    Ah. Must be Labor Day weekend!

    Pretty quiet here. Waiting for the Frontier outside tech to come and fix our PL (Phone Line.) One of those big window “appointments.” Probably knock me off the air for a while. I might have another story to tell, but I hope not. Lately, everything has problems. I want to go hide.

    So glad SteveF didn’t suffer too much from the heat. Good stealth on the sarc, Steve. You would have enjoyed it here. I think 107 high. Compensation: no lawn to mow. Lawn free for… 42 years and counting. Ahhhh.

  38. The Brat made late lunch/early dinner. Nothing fancy: rub some chicken thighs with seasoning and pop them in the oven. An hour later she made Rice-a-Roni to go with it. She had a portion of that plus a couple cookies’ worth of chocolate chip cookie dough. We’d made a double batch of cookies a few days ago and held some of the dough back to eat, and when I say “some” I mean “all” — after the dough had chilled enough to easily drop the cookies I asked her how many cookies to make and how much dough to keep in the fridge for nibbling and her preference was to not bake any cookies. -shrug- Fine with me. Same nutrition (so to speak) either way, I’m not worried about salmonella, and if there are no baked cookies sitting on the counter, dozens of cookies won’t find their way to neighbors and my wife’s office.

    Might make a couple batches of different kinds over the weekend for her to bring to school on the first day. When she was in first grade we made enough cookies for the entire school a few times. After the first time or two, some of the older, more sophisticated, kids (ie, third graders) recognized the tray I brought them on and started bouncing in their seats when they saw me carrying it in when I came in with The Brat in the morning. Oh, to be that age, where anticipation of a free cookie at lunch can make the entire world look brighter.

    (Not serious. I’m not happy and joyful going through life but I wouldn’t trade my awareness and cynicism for anything.)


  39. Compensation: no lawn to mow. Lawn free for… 42 years and counting. Ahhhh.

    I despise the smooth, green lawn beloved of suburbanites. I’d much rather have wild grasses, wild flowers, and whatever else growing. Go ahead and trim it a bit to keep the bugs down, but don’t fertilize and water and do the (expensive and seemingly useless) four-times-per-year spreading of weed killer and “seasonally appropriate” fertilizer. Just knock it off with all the idiot tasks that you “have” to do because all the neighbors are doing them.


  40. We’d made a double batch of cookies a few days ago and held some of the dough back to eat, and when I say “some” I mean “all” — after the dough had chilled enough to easily drop the cookies I asked her how many cookies to make and how much dough to keep in the fridge for nibbling and her preference was to not bake any cookies. -shrug- Fine with me.

    Maybe something in the air. I mixed up a whole batch of chocolate chip cookie dough, looked at it, licked the spoon, thought “the heck with it,” rolled the whole batch out on a cutting board, cut it into small squares, and threw them in the freezer. Just had four pieces for dessert.

    Yes, I dumped my lowcarb diet for the holiday weekend. Two BBQs on the agenda, and I aim to pig out.

  41. I despise the smooth, green lawn beloved of suburbanites. I’d much rather have wild grasses, wild flowers, and whatever else growing. Go ahead and trim it a bit to keep the bugs down, but don’t fertilize and water and do the (expensive and seemingly useless) four-times-per-year spreading of weed killer and “seasonally appropriate” fertilizer. Just knock it off with all the idiot tasks that you “have” to do because all the neighbors are doing them.

    Don’t live in an HOA in Florida, especially one with a lot of retirees, doubly so for military retirees like my Bat Guano neighbors.

    I’m not kidding about the death threats over sod.

    One of my fine neighbors, supposedly one of the Pentagon’s leading lights on Korea. Aggravated Stalking. Nice. Yes, the military can have your court case sealed if you are a special person, but tell that to Mugshotsonline.com.

    https://www.mugshotsonline.com/florida/brandon/glen-nagy/2147862

    The really special part is that old Glen tried to have me framed for the stalking.

  42. I put just enough effort into my lawn to look like everyone else. It looks green from the street. Half the green is close cropped weeds though, because the ‘brown patch’ attacked the grass again this year.

    I lived in the Phoenix area for 4 1/2 years. I came to like the xeriscape yards. When I first got there I thought EVERYTHING was still under construction. All the freeways have raked gravel along them and as center medians. Where I was coming from, every square inch of dirt has something growing on it. It was very jarring.

    My neighborhood still did ‘flood irrigation’. Crazy how moist the desert gets when you dump 6 inches of water into a whole neighborhood. Freaking cold too.

    It took me a long time to recognize the beauty in the Sonoran Desert. I still crave the smell, flint, mesquite, dust…

    n

  43. Doesn’t even have to be an intentional EMP…. could be a CME

    From my ham radio newsletter:

    September 1 marked the 161st anniversary of the so-called “Carrington Event,” when a massive coronal mass ejection from the sun disrupted telegraph systems and generated auroral displays into tropical latitudes. It’s said that the light generated during that 1859 event was nearly as bright as daylight. According to Frank Donovan, W3LPL, the Carrington Event took place less than 4 years after solar minimum and 1 year before solar maximum.

    we’ve got a whole lot more stuff connected to long wires than just the telegraph these days.

    n

  44. If you are looking for an OCR program for Windows there are several versions of Omnipage Pro at:
    winworldpc.com under applications page 24

    I’ve also used Scan Tailor and ImageMagick to covert a series of scans to PDF files Do CD booklets in particular to go with the ripped disc images.

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