Sun. Jan. 31, 2021 – still not done with January…

Cool and clear today, if the forecast holds.  It was misty drizzle in places Saturday, and warmed up significantly.  It was 68F when I went to bed.

I did my pickups, got some cleaning in at my secondary.  Co-incidentally found my stored pool shock/powdered bleach… and put my hands in it.  I was cleaning up some rags and discovered it mixed in.  The bags had broken down and it got wet with something that made it gel.  I’m pretty sure the liquid was a theatrical flame retardant, since that jug was above the bleach, and was empty.   I had to rinse and wash my hands several times, but I think the gel actually stopped me from getting any real burns.  I’ll have to replace the pool shock now.  No wonder the nearby steel was so rusted.  That stuff is 4377 on ferrous metal, even from a distance.  I had forgotten where I put it, and even though I was thinking about it last week, I wouldn’t have ever looked where it was.  There’s a lesson there I’m sure.

I also managed to get a few more things together for both auctions next week.

Today should be clear, and it’s the last day for me to get my stuff in order and get my forklift stowed away in my own area.  That’s gonna take some time, and a lot of ‘tetris’ with moving stuff to move other stuff.  Hopefully I get it done with enough time to do something in the garden.

There are a host of other things piling up too.  Having a couple of clear days in a row will help knock that list down.

There is always something more to do.  It’s a journey, not a destination.  Keep stacking.

 

nick

 

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

54 thoughts on “Sun. Jan. 31, 2021 – still not done with January…”

  1. “another story out of a crime novel”

    Private detective, 70, hired by Bill Clinton to discredit affair rumors and by Harvey Weinstein to track his victims is on life support and ‘not expected to survive’ after robbery outside his San Francisco home

    I’ve noted here before that Carl Hiassen is careful about how much reality from his Miami Herald columns serve as source material for his comedy/crime novels. Real life in Florida is way stranger than fiction, and Hiassen has to make the plots of the books somewhat believable.

    Keep in mind, this is the author who wrote a minor character losing a hand to a barracuda and replacing said appendage with a working weed whacker prosthetic, battery pack positioned under one arm in a special sling.

    If you’re wondering about the logistics, find a copy of Hiassen’s “Skin Tight”.

  2. Sunny and 63F at the moment. Finished feeding the kids and wife, gonna start my day…

    n

  3. I’ve never warmed up to Hiassen’s fiction, although I make a try periodically. I did enjoy Team Rodent, his non-fiction book subtitled “How Disney Devours the World”.

    I recently reread The Dreadful Lemon Sky by John D. MacDonald. Time was when I collected all of JDM’s paperback originals and eagerly awaited the yearly installment of Travis McGee. I saved the last book in the series for ten years before reading it in Fort Lauderdale. Visited the commemorative plaque at F-18 Bahia Mar, too.

    Hiassen wrote a new intro to the first McGee book in the early 90’s, acknowledging the literary debt owed MacDonald. A number of other writers have done the same.

    MacDonald’s A Friendship: The Letters of Dan Rowan and John D. MacDonald 1967-1974 was published about the time of his death, and had the unfortunate effect of tarnishing his reputation in my eyes. For fans of Laugh-In, the book provides indispensable insights, but MacDonald himself came off as more than a bit of a prig at the end of the correspondence and the rift with Rowan.

    The 21 books in the series could have been a gold mine for JDM, but Hollywood balled it up in typical fashion. The first movie starred Rod Taylor, and the second Sam Elliot and his ‘stache with McGee transported to California. There was another movie in the works some years ago that never happened, and I haven’t heard anything since.

  4. who want’s to bet that legislation to prevent this happening again is already on desks?

    Legislation restricting what, exactly? Buying a stock at the retail level?

    The big guys are never going to give up their ability to short weak companies, particularly retail at the brick-n-mortar level.

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  5. No idea what, but the entrenched interests ALWAYS act to protect themselves.

    n

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  6. I’ve never warmed up to Hiassen’s fiction, although I make a try periodically. I did enjoy Team Rodent, his non-fiction book subtitled “How Disney Devours the World”.

    I get the feeling Hiaasen has distanced himself from that book in the last decade or so, especially since the single largest individual holder of the stock is Steve Jobs widow.

    As far as ruining Florida, Disney is not even close to being the worst offender, and I am speaking as a near native.

    IMHO, *Mississippi native* Jimmy Buffet has arguably done more damage to my home state.

    The last time we went to Orlando, we drove past the former Mainland Chinese-owned attraction/spy nest Splendid China to see that Jimmy had bought out the property for a Margaritaville resort, complete with Cheeseburger in Paradise restaurant.

    Just a different flavor of propaganda.


  7. “I don’t think it ends well,” Sherman said.

    “It’s very, very strange. This is the euphoria of market tops. I’m not saying we’re going to have an imminent crash, but it definitely reeks of bubblish-type corrections.”

    “This is something where it builds hubris,” he said. “It builds confidence, and then people will get reckless with their positioning.” he added. “These things just can’t continue to persist. It is some form of collusion. But I don’t know if it’s prosecutable.”

    The Securities and Exchange Commission, the top financial regulator in the United States, said Friday it was reviewing recent trading volatility with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).

    We will act to protect retail investors when the facts demonstrate abusive or manipulative trading activity that is prohibited by the federal securities laws,” it said in a statement. “The commission is working closely with our regulatory partners, both across the government and at FINRA and other self-regulatory organizations, including the stock exchanges, to ensure that regulated entities uphold their obligations to protect investors and to identify and pursue potential wrongdoing.”

    –not prosecutable this time. and remember bizzarro land rules, if they say they are protecting “retail” investors, they mean the opposite. ‘Cuz they’ll “protect” them right out of making massive gains on orchestrated stock moves like the big boys.

    n

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  8. –not prosecutable this time. and remember bizzarro land rules, if they say they are protecting “retail” investors, they mean the opposite. ‘Cuz they’ll “protect” them right out of making massive gains on orchestrated stock moves like the big boys.

    There is only so much they can do without jeopardizing the coordinated action to protect TSLA from the shorts.

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  9. There a theory that one way the hedge funds have sooo many shorts is by electronically duplicating (i.e. forging) stock, to short against. Someone apparently tried to total up all the stock presently owned, and came out with a number way too high.

    Forging stock is, of course, highly illegal, but if the target goes bankrupt, who would notice? Anyway, so the theory goes, this is why the hedge funds are so desperate: if they really have to cover their short positions, well, they can’t, because the stock they shorted against doesn’t actually exist. And some highly paid folks might land behind bars.


  10. And some highly paid folks might land behind bars.

    Sure they will, in the cell between the people who threw out valid ballots and the FBI agents who falsified warrants.

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  11. @SteveF: the problem is, I can’t call you cynical, when that is so obviously true. Isn’t is great that Ms. Yellen is such a popular speaker? No hidden agenda or conflict of interest there, no, of course not.

  12. “because the stock they shorted against doesn’t actually exist”

    — I think that it’s not just the stock, see also any number of zerohedge articles about chinese copper as a collateral, and today’s article about too much silver in the paper market…

    And what about the gold in Ft Knox while we’re at it?

    It all fled like the .gov and .sci credibility….

    n


  13. I can’t call you cynical, when that is so obviously true.

    Cynical is just another word for experienced or, as drwilliams suggests, realistic.

    Studies show* that cynics and pessimists have a more realistic worldview and are better able to predict events. Optimists are happier (my commentary: at least until their imaginary world comes crashing down) but pessimists are more likely to see the world for what it is.

    * Though experience suggests cynicism concerning the results of any psychological or sociological studies, which forms an interesting conundrum.

  14. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9205677/Transgender-New-York-Liberty-guard-Layshia-Clarendon-undergoes-surgery-remove-breasts.html

    -so will s/he/it be allowed to continue playing women’s sports? Or is this part of the push to allow men to play in women’s leagues? but s/he/it doesn’t claim to be a man either, so that can’t be it. Neither fish nor fowl, this is quite foul.

    And why are people celebrating the self mutilation of a mentally ill person? S/he/it is BY DEFINITION mentally ill. Shouldn’t s/he/it lose all the things that are routinely taken from other self harming mentally ill people?? Like freedom? Voting rights? Gun ownership rights? Child custody?

    n

  15. –not prosecutable this time. and remember bizzarro land rules, if they say they are protecting “retail” investors, they mean the opposite. ‘Cuz they’ll “protect” them right out of making massive gains on orchestrated stock moves like the big boys.

    “Caveat Emptor – Are You A WSB ‘Useful Idiot’?”
    https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/caveat-emptor-are-you-wsb-useful-idiot

    “How do you think that WSB knew that GME was open to a short squeeze and a gamma squeeze play?

    WSB’s power users are younger finance bros. It’s 30-something investment bankers and portfolio managers memeing with each other a. cosplaying as “autists.”

    If you didn’t know what a gamma squeeze was 48 hours ago, you are their exit strategy and the down payment on their next Porsche.”

  16. If you didn’t know what a gamma squeeze was 48 hours ago, you are their exit strategy and the down payment on their next Porsche.

    Tesla Model X.

    Porsche is playing catch up in Austin, building a new futuristic dealer showroom at a freeway exit close to the Apple Austin 2.0 campus.

  17. Yup, the trade paperback coming out in April is only $9.99 (half price) on Big River:
    https://www.amazon.com/Pursuit-Pankera-Parallel-Novel-Universes/dp/1647100291/?tag=ttgnet-20

    I have yet to read the newly found Heinlein yet.

    The reviews among Heinlein fans are … mixed at best, trending to sub-par.

    Then why are there 903 reviews on Big River (Amazon) with an average of 4.3 out of 5 stars ? The average reviewer thinks quite highly of the book.

  18. “because the stock they shorted against doesn’t actually exist”

    — I think that it’s not just the stock, see also any number of zerohedge articles about chinese copper as a collateral, and today’s article about too much silver in the paper market…

    “”Everyone Is Afraid Ahead Of The Open” – Reddit-Raiders Spark Nationwide Physical Silver Shortage”
    https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/reddit-preparing-unleash-worlds-biggest-short-squeeze-silver

  19. Watch out for that pool shock. It’s a strong enough oxidizer that it can cause fires — notoriously with brake fluid, and no doubt with other things too. Having it get loose is cause for unease.

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  20. re: Pursuit of the Pankera

    Unfortunately, the two official sources that I would trust for information, The Heinlein Trust and The Heinlein Society, have no information available as far as I can tell. With the passing of William Patterson, Jr., we lost the most authoritative Heinlein scholar and no one else has even pretended to the role.

    Most of the “professional reviews” that I’ve read seem to be confused as to the background, which makes me question any of their content.

    Here is what I’ve pieced together:

    Pursuit of the Pankera is not a “lost” Heinlein, but the original version of the novel that was published as Number of the Beast.

    In the original version, the protagonists visit John Carter’s Mars (Barsoom) and the Land of Oz, having adventures in those settings without interacting with the primary fictional characters. In both cases permissions were sought from the respective author estates to use those settings. There is no information presented as to details of those negotiations ca. 1977, but apparently neither arrangement was made. Likewise there is no information as to the decision making process that ensued, but apparently the result was the retention of the first third of the novel and the rewriting of the last two-thirds. The writing timeline is unclear, but the inference can be made that there was some time pressure associated with the rewrite.

    Alan Brown at TOR Books gives the best summary:

    https://www.tor.com/2020/04/09/long-lost-treasure-the-pursuit-of-the-pankera-vs-the-number-of-the-beast-by-robert-a-heinlein/comment-page-1/

    I’ve read the carp on Amazon, B&N, and other sites. I reject any claim that RAH made an unforced decision to write two “parallel” books. Likewise I don’t believe everything published in the forward to PotP.

    I do believe that the silence of information on the official Heinlein sites, and the mysterious selection of an unknown small press to publish a “long lost” novel of the most important science fiction author of any century, is indicative of collusion and probably speaks to an attempt to limit liability.

    I commented in an earlier discussion that The Number of the Beast was a huge disappointment in that the book started off in fine form then seemed to come off the rails. I’ll comment on the original when I am finished, but I am taking it slowly.

  21. Pursuit of the Pankara: I liked it better than Number of the Beast. The published version felt like a first draft and definitely needed cleanup, especially for pacing and evenness of tone. Despite that, PotP was a better story than NotB. Pankara didn’t go off the rails and it wasn’t the Hilda is Right About Everything show. Recommended even as is for serious science fiction fans and especially for Heinlein fans.

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  22. re: pool shock

    Safe chemical storage requires careful consideration of packaging, shelving, personal protective equipment, spill cleanup, and disposal. It can be complex–I saw a large industrial building evacuated one afternoon when a PhD chemist put the wrong combination of chemicals down the drain.

    Pool shock and other strong oxidizers (many of them chlorine compounds) can cause energetic reactions that release a lot of heat and can start fires. Materials that react together should be stored separately and have provision for secondary containment in the event of a container failure.

    I strongly recommend doing due diligence in researching the dangerous properties of chemicals that you store. The manufacturer’s website and SDS are good places to start. Wikipedia is generally reliable.

    Most people don’t have the chemistry background to adequately understand the issues. I recommend getting a copy of The Chemical Technicians’ Ready Reference Handbook. Currently in 5th edition, a copy of the 3rd or 4th will serve adequately.

    The personal protective equipment (PPE) part is vital if you are handling chemicals. Protecting your eyes with goggles is by far the most important, as some relatively common items can take your sight in a heartbeat. Those face shield that have become commonplace as one layer of protection from Wuhan coronavirus are good additions in some situations. Several types of gloves…

    But you get the picture, right? Be prepared.

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  23. “Report Biden admin misplaced about 20 million vaccine doses sent to states”
    https://www.independentsentinel.com/report-biden-admin-misplaced-about-20-million-vaccine-doses-sent-to-states/

    “According to a report from Politico, the Biden administration may have misplaced as many as 20 million vaccine doses that were sent to the states.

    Biden’s allegedly jettisoned his China virus plan, whatever that was. They now realize what an overwhelmingly task it is.

    One administration official was quoted as saying, “It’s the Mike Tyson quote: ‘Everybody’s got a plan until they get punched in the mouth.’””

    I’ve seen the dumbrocrat distribution plan before when Jimmy Carter’s Whitehouse staff decided to take over gasoline distribution in the USA in 1979. It was a total and abject failure. I can remember sitting in a gasoline line on a nice fine July day in Houston in my non air-conditioned car trying to get my ten gallons, the limit, on my odd plate day. It only took a two hour wait. I have disliked dumbrocrats every since.

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

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  24. Biden’s allegedly jettisoned his China virus plan, whatever that was. They now realize what an overwhelmingly task it is.

    Biden wanted all of the vaccine doses out now without holding any in reserve for second injections.

    That wouldn’t accomplish anything other than enable arbitrage on a larger scale IMHO.

    The refrigeration requirements for the Pfizer vaccine and dual injection mechanism behind both Moderna and Pfizer have limited arbitrage. Wealthy people are still jumping the line, but the numbers are limited.

    The vaccines can’t end up like Playstation 5s.

    My wife got a second injection of Moderna at the VA on Friday and was wiped out all day yesterday with chills and muscle aches. Nothing more today, however.

    I still don’t have any interest in the shot.

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  25. I still don’t have any interest in the shot.

    I think that I am going to take the shots. I should have a while before having to finally make up my mind though.

    I suspect that functioning in society will require getting the shots though. Of course, people will be faking the documentation all over the place instead of taking the shots.

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  26. I took the jab not for myself, but to help protect the woman I love who has several co-morbidities. Don’t want to give it to her. If it was just me alone I probably wouldn’t bother.

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  27. I think that I am going to take the shot. I should have a while before having to finally make up my mind though.

    The numbers in Texas are headed in the right direction.

    Since February lacks a holiday with FOMO as a factor and Easter isn’t until the 4th of April this year, the next eight weeks should be a good indicator of where things are headed.

    The percentage of the population who would be prone to doing stupid things at the holidays to spread the virus did those stupid things at the holidays.

  28. Speaking of John D. MacDonald (up thread)…. does anyone recall the name of the fictional lawyer / detective who was of Armenian descent? Or the author’s name? I’ve racked my brain and can’t find it.

  29. “Don’t want to give it to her.”

    –except the vaccine won’t prevent you getting it, or spreading it… and that is right from phoney Fauci’s mouth…

    n

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  30. The vaccine (any vaccine) won’t prevent you from ‘getting’ it. And you may, if you ‘get’ the Covid, allow you to spread it to others.

    No vaccine will prevent the spread of a disease. But a vaccine will prevent you from getting any adverse effects from the virus – in this case, Covid.

    Maybe a minor effect of the vaccine getting to work in your immune system – slight fever, slight aches, etc – all signs that your body is using the vaccine to prepare it’s defenses against the actual attack of the virus. And all normal.

    That’s the way vaccines work.. No matter which vaccine you get.

    I usually don’t get a yearly flu shot. But will for this one, since Covid is a bit more ‘intense’ than the regular flu.

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  31. I’m not a virologist.

    But my understanding of how a vaccine works is that it teaches your immune system to attack and hopefully prevent an infection by a virus from overwhelming your body’s defenses.

    So it would seem that in the course of doing so, the viral load in your body is not only reduced, but the concentration of viral particles exhaled is also reduced, and so would be the probability of passing it on to others.

    This would seem to be confirmed by:

    “Preclinical studies have also shown that some of the vaccines in development achieved complete viral suppression in monkeys. Johnson & Johnson, Novavax and Pfizer-BioNTech were all able to virtually eradicate the virus from animal respiratory tracts. (Vaccines in development by AstraZeneca Plc and Moderna didn’t quite manage this.) But these are not human trials, of course.”

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/medical/vaccines-fight-covid-but-can-they-stop-the-spread/ar-BB1baLem

    Research is ongoing. The conservative approach is to continue taking every precaution, particularly around people who may be susceptible.

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  32. Didn’t get the picture on my site because I couldn’t get them out of my phone. I’ve had this problem before with different phones so it’s me, not the phones. I seldom send someone a picture because I can’t seem to attach them to a message. I finally opened a google mydrive account and got the pictures to it but still couldn’t the pictures to my computer. Their side bar menu does not have a down load option.

    The 0.25 inches of rain last night turned the shop site into a mud hole so I didn’t get anything done. I did discover a neighbor has bought a saw mill and will work with me on cutting my trees into lumber on a one for me, one for him basis.

  33. @Bob Sprowl

    Suggestion: Display pic at Google Photo, right click to “Save Image”.

  34. Well, I am on Windows 10 Pro x64 at my home pc now on a 500 GB SSD drive.

    I am having a SATA problem though and trying to figure out what is going on. Probably due to the fact my motherboard is so old (2012). It has both SATA2 and SATA3 systems (transition !).

  35. @bob, as soon as you select a photo by clicking on it in the upper left (and a check mark appears0 the tool bar at the top right of the page will change, adding an icon with three dots in a vertical line. Click that and “download” is one of the choices.

    I select all the photos I want with the same subject, then d/l them, then immediately change the name on the zip file to be the photo subject. Otherwise you just ahve a bunch of photos.zip files in you d/l folder.

    n

  36. Nighttraker: In MyDrive, when the photo is open right click is ignored.

    Nick: In MyDrive single clicking on a photo does nothing, double clicking opens the photo. Right clicking opens a drop down menu with a download option which will create a zip file. Hopefully tomorrow I can put some photos on my site.

    Thanks

  37. @Nick and @Bob

    In Google Drive, once you get some pix on the screen, a click on the pix changes the background of the picture filename (under the actual picture) to a light blue. Ctrl+Click to select a lot of them. Selected pix have a light-blue background of the file name.

    A click on one or many items makes the ‘three-dot’ icon appear in folder name area (above all the pix, but below the ‘search’ form). That’s the ‘more actions’ button, and clicking that will let you select ‘download’ from there.

    There’s a button up there that flips between list and grid (display) mode. If you switch to list mode, you just get file names. Clicking on a single file will blue-background the file name box. Ctrl+Click to select many. The first click will display the ‘three-dot’ icon, where you can download.

    There are other icons that appear when you click on one/multiple pix. Hovering over any of them tells what they do.

    This is how it works on a Win10 system. The check marks aren’t there any more, at least on my system.

  38. Ah the joys of tech support. For me, hovering over the pic gets the check box to appear, and once you select one, then you can select more by clicking on it once.

    The UI is maddening because it changes depending on what you’ve already done. Poor design in my book.

    n

  39. Ah the joys of tech support. For me, hovering over the pic gets the check box to appear, and once you select one, then you can select more by clicking on it once.

    The UI is maddening because it changes depending on what you’ve already done. Poor design in my book.

    n

    All programmers should be required to read Joel Spolsky’s book “User Interface Design for Programmers” annually.
    https://www.amazon.com/Interface-Design-Programmers-Avram-Spolsky/dp/1893115941/?tag=ttgnet-20

    I am so glad that he does not list our software in his book as one (or more !) of his terrible examples.


  40. why are people celebrating the self mutilation of a mentally ill person?

    Twitter recently censored some organization that pointed out that a trans-person is still biologically their original gender. I followed the link at the time, and it wasn’t inflammatory in any way – just a statement of a fact. Apparently simple facts are too offensive to be allowed. OTOH I am encouraged that politicians are now seriously considering banning biological males from women’s sports. That has always been utterly unfair to biological women.

    The whole GameStop frenzy makes me wish I still had a US brokerage account. I would happily spend a bit to contribute. It’s really just like the way Trump was elected: ordinary people fed up with the elites, and showing it. Even if this particular event doesn’t lead to change, the next one will, or the one after that. Another brick torn out of the wall.

  41. Well, I am on Windows 10 Pro x64 at my home pc now on a 500 GB SSD drive.

    I am having a SATA problem though and trying to figure out what is going on. Probably due to the fact my motherboard is so old (2012). It has both SATA2 and SATA3 systems (transition !).

    Check the SSD manufacturer’s site for firmware updates and look at Intel.com to see if they have drivers for the specific chipset of the motherboard in question. Also look if the motherboard manufacturer has BIOS upgrades, but be really careful with those.

    Intel has been really aggressive about dropping Windows drivers for “old” chipsets, early core i3/i5/i7 which support Windows 7 or earlier. Even installing Windows 10 on my surplus T420 results in an unknown device or two in the Device Manager where Linux is fine.

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