Mon. June 14, 2021 – a fresh new week!

Hot and humid. Possibility of rain. Yada yada, Houston, mumble… Yeah well it got to 107F in the sun at my house yesterday so that’s pretty stinking hot. And I mean stinking, especially after working outside… Today should be similar, with rain possible in the national forecast. It was still high 80s when I went to bed, so if the front moves in and brings some cooling with the rain, I guess I’ll live with rain.

Spent yesterday doing stuff around the house, and not much of it. Other than cutting the grass in the hottest part of the day, I mostly hid in my office. I did get two of my radios finally connected back up to their antennas and power supply, so that was something off the list. They might still have some cabling clean up in their future, but for now, I can at least listen again.

My auction pickup was vintage camping gear. There was a vintage sleeping bag (Comfy, Seattle Quilt Co) that might be worth some money, and a brand new lantern that I have to take a good look at. Styled like a coleman, but all shiny chrome, some research is in order. With the vintage pair of Filson boots I picked up at Goodwill, all I need is a red flannel shirt and I’m all set to hit the woods, 60s style.

While I was in and out of my office, I ripped another 20 or 30 CDs and 15 or 20 DVDs. Haven’t figured out why the Bluray disks won’t rip, but I haven’t looked too hard given all the other stuff on my list.

I updated my NVR linux install. It hasn’t been stable at all, but it’s the MS dotnet stuff that keeps crashing. At least once a day I get a seg fault or some other error, so I decided to try running update. I de-selected all the “move to the next version of dotnet (5)” stuff because it broke the NVR last time. That left the linux stuff and the fixes to dotnet 3. If it hasn’t crashed by later this morning, there has been an improvement.

In-laws were safely delivered to the airport and JetBlue’s tender mercies, so I have my house to myself again. Didn’t make MIL cry this visit, so that’s a win. Didn’t really talk to her at all about anything though. Didn’t say much to FIL either. My wife and I both love our families but there are reasons we live 2000 miles away. I wish it were different but if wishes were horses, we’d all be eating steak.* I try very hard to not get between them and the grandkids, except when my kids need protecting from their bizarre ideas. Fun to eavesdrop when oldest supports Trump in conversations with them. They dodge and bail on the subject pretty quickly. When a 12yo sees the truth, it’s pretty obvious and only the willfully blind refuse to see.

Today I’m stuck at home with the kids so I’ll be doing office and PC stuff. There is plenty of it to do. And when I get stressed, I’ll play with the puppy.

Keep stacking.

nick

*or living on a spaceship

Author: Nick Flandrey

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

93 thoughts on “Mon. June 14, 2021 – a fresh new week!”

  1. And the wife asked me this afternoon if I wanted her 1099 for the Fidelity account that she inherited from her dad last year. Not the IRA, but the real money account. Arrrgggghhhh ! I’ve only been working on our taxes for a month. Stupid Fidelity Contrafund had a $1,000 in capital gains. 

    Gains in the last year or since her father bought the shares?

    Watch the fees at Fidelity for their funds not in a 401(k) or IRA.

  2. While I was in and out of my office, I ripped another 20 or 30 CDs and 15 or 20 DVDs. Haven’t figured out why the Bluray disks won’t rip, but I haven’t looked too hard given all the other stuff on my list. 

    Bluray discs have varying degrees of copy protection far superior to the DVD standard. I believe level of protection is based on how much money the owner of the IP wants to pay Sony to license the encoding and the risk that the customers players may not be 100% standard.

    Try MakeMKV with a BluRay first. If that software doesn’t crack the protection, check back in a release or two. You may have to accept that a disc will never be cracked.

    The file out of MakeMKV will be *BIG*. HandBrake will cut it to a more manageable size.

    DVD, as I’ve noted before, has simple copy protection designed by studio lawyers. Though, to be fair, the weakness, discovered by “DVD Jon” to create the DeCSS algorithm was an accident due to missing paperwork from a licensee IIRC. And highly paid Apple engineers did something far dumber which meant early obsolescence for most iPhones before iPhone 4.

    I don’t actually own a BluRay drive for a computer right now. It is on the list.

  3. My wife and I both love our families but there are reasons we live 2000 miles away. 

    Family was one reason we bailed on the Northwest. Beyond having too many Number One Sons competing for the title of “boss” cousin, one Chinese relation’s husband, a marginal Valley C-suite exec with more failures than success on his resume, has aspirations of being a Prog/tech pundit like you’d see on TWIT.

    His Twitter account ranting is bad enough. And of course he drives a Model X Tonymobile.

    Normally, they stay on the West Coast and we avoid going out there, but we’re facing the possibility of a funeral trip this summer. As I’ve noted before, politeness is viewed as a weakness, and they know we would be unflinchingly polite at an event like a wake no matter what got said.


  4. I’ve been writing crappy Fortran code for 45 years

    Is there another kind of FORTRAN code?

    I wanted her 1099 for the Fidelity account that she inherited

    We will face that same issue with the MIL accounts that the wife inherits. One of the certificates went to my son. Apparently certificates mature immediately on the death of the holder. Thus no early withdrawal penalties. CU wanted to get rid of them anyway as they are long term certificates paying 4%. Son will have to pay taxes on the earnings for this year and will receive a 1099.

    Wife and I face bigger problems. A couple of large certificates will be given to the wife when probate settles. Again, long term certificates paying 4%. CU wants those gone. But we will get 10’s of thousands of dollars from Vanguard, all untaxed. I am figuring about $15K in taxes on that money. I will have the 20% withheld to avoid nasty grams from the IRS. All the other certificate and account money has been taxed so no issues on that.

    I have also learned the wife is entitled by Texas law as executor of the will to get paid 5% of the total. She won’t do that and will instead just split equally with her brother. I am telling her to take the 5% as that is another several thousand in our pocket. I don’t know if the courts “require” that money to be taken out.

    Anyway, still waiting on probate. Fully expect another 30 days even though it has been two weeks so far.

  5. Wife and I face bigger problems. A couple of large certificates will be given to the wife when probate settles. Again, long term certificates paying 4%. CU wants those gone. But we will get 10’s of thousands of dollars from Vanguard, all untaxed. I am figuring about $15K in taxes on that money. I will have the 20% withheld to avoid nasty grams from the IRS. All the other certificate and account money has been taxed so no issues on that.

    Talk to the lawyer about how much of the capital gains are your responsibility with the Vanguard funds. It may be that you only owe taxes on the appreciation in value since her father died.

  6. On solar:

    I posted an article here, some years back, about a guy who got tired of storms taking him off grid. He built a small home with an out building to hold a ton of batteries and stalk mounted panels, completely off grid. The bottom line was in the 7 figures. His last name was Ford. Yeah, one of those Fords.

    Maybe live in a Prius for several years. There are vids on YT on people who do it.


  7. It may be that you only owe taxes on the appreciation in value since her father died

    The money is in an IRA, has never been taxed, and was used to avoid taxes. Thus the entire amount is taxable regardless of the gains. What I don’t know is if the taxes become the deceased MIL’s tax responsibility or mine? That will largely depend on how the 1099 is issued by Vanguard. If MIL’s taxes the amount will be reduced because her reduced income (only 4 months) for the year. If mine then substantially more. What is certain, the IRS will get their pound(s) of flesh.

  8. What is certain, the IRS will get their pound(s) of flesh. 

    Oh, sure. And, hopefully, she filed every year, unlike my father-in-law.

    I wasn’t aware of the 5% fee for the executor in Texas. I think we ended up with all of the taxes and expenses for the estate while my sister-in-law skated with half of the IRA cashouts and proceeds from selling whatever my father-in-law owned that was worth anything — not much but he had some guns where the purchase was media-inspired, including a “Dirty Harry” 357.

    My wife was at a disadvantage to her sister in dealing with the probate lawyer. SIL is an ex-stripper who smokes, and that combination carries a lot of soft power in a legal situation dealing with Y chromosomes in The South, especially in the case of a repressed lawyer, closet smoker, Harvard educated, and engaged to a debutante.

    God, my FIL’s probate was a mess.

  9. “God, my FIL’s probate was a mess.”
    –sounds like it, holy cow.

    n

    87F and 71%RH at 930am, so I think we’re getting another hot humid day. Surprise.

    n


  10. hopefully, she filed every year, unlike my father-in-law

    She did as I did her taxes and filed them electronically for her. The filing of taxes will not be an issue.

    God, my FIL’s probate was a mess.

    MIL’s should be easy. Wife is sole beneficiary, simple will, no real estate, just bank accounts and investment account. We have to probate because the CU is requiring probate to release money from the accounts where wife is not joint or beneficiary. I guess that is a requirement. CU will not even give us information on the accounts until the letter of testamentary is provided. Not a big deal as I suspect Vanguard would require the same thing.

    Attorney is $3,500.00, flat fee, and includes all monies that must be paid to the courts. Seems to be the going rate in San Antonio as we contacted a couple of additional lawyers. Some were more, none were less. Probably could have found “Billy Bob’s Law Office” and saved a few bucks.

  11. I finished my taxes. I gave all my paperwork to our CPA. I hate doing taxes.

  12. From way-back on Friday (I was busy all weekend)

    Is private insurance really illegal in Canada?

    You cannot purchase private insurance for anything covered by the basic health-care system. A doctor cannot accept a payment from anyone but the government for providing that service or accept an additional payment (top-up) for performing that service. You can buy private coverage for anything outside the system (e.g.: dental care). An important distinction to understand: In Canada, I don’t have health insurance, I have public health care. Since it is not insurance there is none of the “pre-existing condition” situation that can cause someone to stay in the same job (and suffer abuse from the employer) because they can’t afford to lose coverage for a health problem at a new employer. In that sense, a public health care system makes job mobility much more fluid in Canada. I would like to see the option of buying coverage in addition to the public system (as Marcelo described for Australia), but that is not allowed in Canada.

  13. Well, now I have a name if anything bad happens to my 12 year old from getting vaccinated. Since the report and coverage this article exposes were the exact things that drove my wife to knuckle under to the pressure, I now know who needs to be held personally accountable.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9683233/CDC-KNEW-coronavirus-hospitalization-fallen-teens-cynically-exploited-fears-parents.html

    And I’m not the only one.

    n

    2
  14. Well, now I have a name if anything bad happens to my 12 year old from getting vaccinated. Since the report and coverage this article exposes were the exact things that drove my wife to knuckle under to the pressure, I now know who needs to be held personally accountable.

    Walensky’s going to skate as far as any legal accountability. Just like Fauci. Just like everybody in government except for the elected officials up in the midterms next year. The money spent on the shots has to be justified, and I have no doubt the cost was folded into the zero baseline numbers.

    Our local Judge is history at least as far as our household is concerned. The problem is we may have to vote for a Dem, but Williamson County is headed in that direction.

  15. Oh jeez, I’ve been wondering all week why I felt like I missed something important, looking at the calendar, checking mom’s anniversary and birthday, getting Pearl Harbor day confused with D Day, and today I figured it out.

    June 6 would have been RBT’s birthday. It’s staring at me from the masthead every day and I missed it.

    Raise a glass to absent friends.

    n

    11
  16. “Walensky’s going to skate as far as any legal accountability. Just like Fauci. Just like everybody in government”

    –if they knowingly hurt kids with this sh!t, LEGAL will be the least of their problems. I don’t expect them to survive the press conference, let alone any Nuremberg Trial.

    Faceless bureaucrats won’t remain faceless, and there will be the equivalent of the Na zi hunters for decades if that’s what it takes.

    The only way to avoid it would be to crash the world back to the steam age.

    n


  17. Raise a glass to absent friends.

    I’ll “pour one out for my homies” tonight. 😉

    Actually, RBT didn’t drink did he? He was more of a Coca-Cola guy, IIRC.

  18. @ray, cut rate lawyers are like cut rate doctors, not something you want to mess around with. You made a good choice,

    n


  19. This is for our 3,300 ft2 one story in Fort Bend County with two a/c units that we keep at 71 F to 72 F.

    Most any time my wife lowers the thermostat below 74 F I jokingly (okay, half-joking) threaten to install one of those clear plastic thermostat covers. During the summer we are usually at 78 F day and night.

    1

  20. I had to look up that Slingshot. Yecch. Reminds me of all the four wheel “off road machines” around here. Saw the darn things in half! AFAIK, all three wheel street legal vehicles without an enclosed body are classified as motorcycles, so they are the worst of both worlds. Don’t even like sidecars.

    Don’t the ‘reverse’ trikes like the Slingshot steer like a car (no leaning) vs. a regular trike which steers like a motorcycle?

  21. Weirdness- after not seeing it at all for days/weeks/longer, today I see the word rein/reign twice, and each time it’s used when the other spelling is correct.

    Should be “he reigns over the country” by “holding the reins of state in his hands”.

    Not the usual your, you’re, their, there, they’re problem.

    Strange to see it twice in one day.

    n

  22. Can it get more stupid than this?

    –oh yes. It certainly can.

    n

  23. From SteveF yesterday:

    Didn’t Mr Cowboy Slim run the numbers? Someone here did…

    Yes, solar scammers came to my house and asked: “Do you want to save money?”
    My answer was YES! Why should I pay more. I stated 20% less than local power company with 100% certainty.

    They walked away!

  24. Weirdness- after not seeing it at all for days/weeks/longer, today I see the word rein/reign twice, and each time it’s used when the other spelling is correct.

    Should be “he reigns over the country” by “holding the reins of state in his hands”.

    Not the usual your, you’re, their, there, they’re problem.

    Strange to see it twice in one day.

    The talking point memos go out around 6AM. The propoganda direction for the day used to go via Fax, but now it is email, making for easy cut-n-paste.

    A President does not reign. I hope the word wasn’t being used in relation to Biden or we are all in trouble.

    An uncommon weasel word always catches my attention in the news. “Provenance” was big one week when we still lived in Vantucky. “Synergy” and “paradigm” are others that rotate in and out of the memos.

  25. I saw it in very un-talking points kinds of places.

    Biden does as he’s bidden, he doesn’t even reign in his own home, as “Dr” Jill firmly holds both the whip and the reins.

    I find it easier to remember which is which when I add the ‘s’ to the end.

    n

  26. Found out what the money from the government was intended. It is a refund of co-pays. One page in the mail, no other information. Hmmm, the only co-pays that I pay is for prescription medication. It is $15.00 a prescription unless disability rating is 50% or higher. Mine is only 40%. Several of the refills were for only 30 days when they should have been for 90 days. Maybe that is the reason, combining those 30 day refills into 90 days. Who knows?

  27. Lynn, if you don’t get the HD, get a mountain bike. Oh wait, you don’t have any terrain to climb. Hmm. That’s going to be my next purchase. I looove anything with two wheels.

    I have a 66 HD Sportster, and love it, but you would like something more modern. Talk about lean, mine weighs approximately 425 lb ready to go. It didn’t come with nor does it legally need (in CA, anyway) anything more than a headlight and taillight, and no battery since there is no electric starter. The electric foot came out a year later in that line. With manual timing, starting it is an art: easy if you know how and the gods are smiling, heart attack time if you don’t. We joke that there is no need for an ignition key. There actually ARE many bikes that are harder to start. The BSA 441 Victor comes to mind.

    I have been mostly riding dirt bikes since arriving at the desert, since highway touring was never my thing. I never knew falling down could be so much fun. Old age is a state of mind. Doing fun things keeps us young.

    I had to look up that Slingshot. Yecch. Reminds me of all the four wheel “off road machines” around here. Saw the darn things in half! AFAIK, all three wheel street legal vehicles without an enclosed body are classified as motorcycles, so they are the worst of both worlds. Don’t even like sidecars.

    I have ridden both fuel injected and carbureted H-Ds. I prefer fuel injected.

    I had a 1973 Honda CB-350 twin with a broken piston ring (no compression on that cylinder). I started it by running with the bike and popping the clutch. At 25 F, it was difficult to get going. If you were going less than a mile, it was easier to walk.

    1
  28. Just got the septic tank at the house cleaned out. He took 2,000 gallons by his meter and charged me $680. The first and second tanks are 1,500 gallons each, the third tank is 2,000 gallons. The first and second tanks were full of solids and the water was bypassing to the third tank. The tanks were last cleaned out three years ago.

    It is already 97 F out there !

    The middle tank is not concrete, it is fiberglass. I have to put 200 gallons of water in it in case it rains and pops the empty tank out of the ground (hydrostatic pressure from ground water).

    Each tank had hundreds of mosquitos in it. Nasty.


  29. –yup, that sounds EXACTLY like Biden is in charge. Not. But since that means we don’t really know who is, that isn’t the good thing it might seem.

    They’re doing a better job than I expected in keeping Joe’s puppet masters behind the curtains.

  30. And the wife asked me this afternoon if I wanted her 1099 for the Fidelity account that she inherited from her dad last year. Not the IRA, but the real money account. Arrrgggghhhh ! I’ve only been working on our taxes for a month. Stupid Fidelity Contrafund had a $1,000 in capital gains.

    Gains in the last year or since her father bought the shares?

    Watch the fees at Fidelity for their funds not in a 401(k) or IRA.

    Gains in the last year from them selling and buying stocks within the fund. The holder of record gets the tax liability at the end of the year.

  31. Biden does as he’s bidden, he doesn’t even reign in his own home, as “Dr” Jill firmly holds both the whip and the reins.

    Dr. Jill Biden may be the sole reason Plugs is still alive, sparing us much worse. That and an unwillingness of the cabal to compromise on a VP for Kamala that would get past the need for a tiebreaker vote in the Senate.

    Kerry would peel off a few Republican votes, but the cabal doesn’t want Tay-ray-sah taking up residence at Number One Observatory Circle any more than most here would. After that the list of compromise candidates willing to step aside for Mayor Pete in 2024 gets awfully short.

  32. “This is what happens when you dehumanize people, which is the entire point of Critical Race Theory”
    https://gunfreezone.net/this-is-what-happens-when-you-dehumanize-people-which-is-the-entire-point-of-critical-race-theory/

    “Critical Race Theory is all over the news right now, particularly how terrible it is that Republicans want to ban it from being taught in school, with many people saying Republicans can’t even define it.
    Critical Race Theory is just the racial branch of Critical Theory.
    Critical Theory is a field of study that comes straight from the teachings of Karl Marx.
    This is the simplest way to explain it:
    Marx wanted a socialist revolution, where the lower classes would rise up against the upper class and take their stuff.
    Marxists needed to foment enough class division to kick off that revolution.”

    Yup, this is all about taking other people’s stuff.

  33. I wasn’t aware of the 5% fee for the executor in Texas. I think we ended up with all of the taxes and expenses for the estate while my sister-in-law skated with half of the IRA cashouts and proceeds from selling whatever my father-in-law owned that was worth anything — not much but he had some guns where the purchase was media-inspired, including a “Dirty Harry” 357.

    Dirty Harry carried a S&W Model 29, a .44 Magnum. At the time, it was the most powerful handgun in the USA. Now you can get a .50 Magnum revolver and bigger (bear killers).
    https://www.smith-wesson.com/product/model-29?sku=150145

  34. Data points for the ecomony– more trade magazine page counts

    Machine Design, up from 40 pages to 58 this month.

    Electronics Design, down to 32 pages. It’s always been smaller than MD, but jeez that’s small.
    n

  35. “It isn’t normal to hit 100 degrees this early in summer in Houston”
    https://www.wunderground.com/weather/us/tx/sugar%20land/77469

    “Houston summers are notably hot and humid. Many of us hate it, but it’s almost a badge of honor of sorts for us, right? Anyway, Hobby hit 100° yesterday and Bush hit 99° as well. For Hobby, that’s the third earliest date since 1930 that we’ve hit the century mark for the first time in a year, just being beat out by May 31, 1998 (100) and June 5, 2011 (102). At Bush Airport and officially for Houston, we tied for our eighth earliest first 99° reading. May 29, 1996 and June 2, 2011 top that list. The average for our first 99° at Bush is July 16th, and the average for our first 100° at Hobby is July 17th. This is very early for this kind of heat. Granted, we’re going to be dealing with a borderline historic ridge of high pressure in the West the next several days, so I guess it should not be much of a surprise, but after a very wet May, color me a bit surprised we went this far this fast. Hopefully not a harbinger of things to come this summer.”

    The summer of 2011 sucked. Then again, most summers in Houston suck.

    And the winter of 2010 – 2011 was our last hard freeze down to 20 F.

    2
  36. Adaptive Curmudgeon has written a 5 part series on black swans with some very interesting election history that I didn’t know.

    Well worth reading for the history lesson and the food for thought.

    https://adaptivecurmudgeon.com/

    Scroll down and read in order, he will get to the point of it all….

    n

    added- the issues seem to be historically sorted out with assassination or manufactured scandal, or both.

  37. “Sleepy Joe meets the Queen, says she reminds hime of his mother.’

    –Spun as an insult on Gateway Pundit, and spun as a sweet anecdote on DM. Joe and Jill had multiple protocol breaches, which part of me doesn’t care about (if it’s intentional and serves a purpose), and part of me takes as a sign that they can’t behave in other people’s homes, or don’t know any better, which bugs the cr@p out of me.

    n

  38. Hurricane season is heating up!

    From FEMA

    Disturbance 1 (as of 8:00 a.m. ET)
    ▪ 90 miles S of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina
    ▪ A tropical storm or depression is likely to form later today
    ▪ 48-hour formation chance: High (70%)
    ▪ 5-day formation chance: High (70%)
    Disturbance 2 (as of 5:00 a.m. ET)
    ▪ Over the Bay of Campeche
    ▪ Slow development possible
    ▪ Tropical depression could form over the next couple of
    days
    ▪ 48-hour formation chance: Low (20%)
    ▪ 5-day formation chance: Medium (60%)
    Disturbance 3 (as of 8:00 a.m. ET)
    ▪ Offshore of West Africa
    ▪ Some development is possible during the next few days
    ▪ 48-hour formation chance: Low (10%)
    ▪ 5-day formation chance: Low (20%)

  39. And ERCOT is already at red conditions and $900/MWH and it only 1:22pm. Peak on a Monday is usually at 3pm to 5pm. Gonna be a rough ride today, hope they have some magic MWs in their back pockets.
    http://www.ercot.com/

  40. God, my FIL’s probate was a mess.

    MIL’s should be easy. Wife is sole beneficiary, simple will, no real estate, just bank accounts and investment account. We have to probate because the CU is requiring probate to release money from the accounts where wife is not joint or beneficiary. I guess that is a requirement. CU will not even give us information on the accounts until the letter of testamentary is provided. Not a big deal as I suspect Vanguard would require the same thing.

    Fidelity released my father-in-law’s money and IRA accounts with just a death certificate to my wife and her sister. In fact, my wife will have to do the RMD (required minimum distribution) thing in September since he had been RMD’ing since he turned 70 or so.

    I tried to get the wife to get his IRA out under his taxes but he passed away. His tax rate was 10%, ours is 25%., so we lost money to the feddies.

  41. Dirty Harry carried a S&W Model 29, a .44 Magnum. At the time, it was the most powerful handgun in the USA. Now you can get a .50 Magnum revolver and bigger (bear killers).

    My bad. FIL bragged about having a Dirty Harry gun, and all the firearms disappeared into my sister-in-law’s house since she went to Dallas to pick up whatever was left of his estate.

    The only item of value we have that came from the estate is the Rolex. The only reason it didn’t end up at my in-law’s house is that the estate had to initiate a formal request to get the watch back from the deceased’s brother, my wife’s uncle, who had ended up with it illegally. Long story. Suffice it to say, the watch couldn’t disappear in a deal cut over cigarettes out the back door of the attorney’s office with my wife out of earshot.

    As I’ve noted before, we are immediately rejecting the executor responsibility when my wife’s mother passes. It is possible, but the time window is very narrow. A state-appointed executor will prevent a lot of mischief both from my sister-in-law and the Chinese relations on the West Coast.

  42. And ERCOT is already at red conditions and $900/MWH and it only 1:22pm. Peak on a Monday is usually at 3pm to 5pm. Gonna be a rough ride today, hope they have some magic MWs in their back pockets.
    http://www.ercot.com/

    ERCOT is now 3,000 MW higher (70,000 MW) and the price is up to $2,000/MWH. That back pocket does not appear to have much in it. But it has clouded over here and the temperature just dropped to 87 F. Looks like it is raining just west of here.

    If this is Texas at 100 F then what is 110 F gonna look like ?

  43. If this is Texas at 100 F then what is 110 F gonna look like ?

    Keep in mind that Austin is still upper 90s this week.

    The neighbors’ daughter’s plugin Hyundai hybrid was on the charger all afternoon yesterday, during the hottest part of the day. Charging the thing is optional, but my guess is that she’s obsessed with seeing how long she can go without buying gas — a common game among owners of that type of vehicle.

    I worked with a guy at the last job who had a plug-in CMax conversion done in CA and essentially destroyed the electrical system of the car trying to go without buying gas for his daily commute.

  44. “I gots to know.”

    The gun and the badge were on display on the WB Studio Tour prior to my former corporate masters buying and then discarding WarnerMedia.

    My guess is that they are still on display. Clint is still a big deal on the WB lot, and the last time the studio turned Eastwood down for money, the resulting Oscar statue for Best Picture — “Million Dollar Baby” — took up residence elsewhere the night after the ceremony.

    WB won’t make that mistake again.

  45. I have ridden both fuel injected and carbureted H-Ds. I prefer fuel injected.

    On a modern bike, of course. My Sporty has no true electrical system to run EFI, just a Delco generator, regulator, and no battery. This is OK for crude things like lights. Also, it is a “naked” bike, and hiding all that extra stuff would be a challenge. I live with what I call PFA (Pneumatic Fuel Aspiration,) one of my never filed trademarks.

    It has one of the simplest, best running carburetors, an SU, which is similar in principle to the carbs on your Honda 350. SUs use a piston instead of a diaphragm, but both operate a slide that creates a variable venturi. The throttle controlled by the rider is downstream of that slide. The result is smooth delivery, even when the throttle is opened wide suddenly at very low rpm. SU carburetors were fairly common on British sports cars. Zenith carbs were similar to your Honda’s and came on some Volvos and a couple of Japanese cars. That said, my SU sticks out too far, and I would  like a Tillotson or one of the clones. Some of these are actually shorter flange to flange than their throttle bore. They don’t have a float bowl, and can operate in any position, popular for chain saws. An OEM HD Tillotson for a later year than mine (mine originally came with a crude Linkert) can be very expensive. Another project.

    Reminds me about carburetors. I used to hobby with them, a hobby within a hobby, kinda like building antennas for ham radio. My interest ran from small engines to large V8s. I especially liked Carter carbs, and their cousins, Ball and Ball. These were great designs for street driven cars, and were very simple and reliable. I used to tell friends that car-bu-re-tor was a French word that meant “leave it alone.” I have seen far too many people tinker with and mess up carbs.

    Now, with today’s gasolines and high underhood temperatures, it is very hard to get a carb to perform well in hot weather. EFI is the way to go. My next auto project will include EFI, and I am looking forward to it. No more smelly gasoline soaked hands; tune it from a small console. However, NOT for a bike unless it is one of those plastic covered ones. I like my bikes simple.

  46. Good day to own a power station. $900/MWh. 

    So what happens when everyone of means has a home generator and demand shifts to the gas grid during these kinds of events?

    As I’ve noted before, Atmos cut service to a fancy neighborhood in Leander during the February ice storms for several hours because demand spiked suddenly in a way the utility had never seen before, endangering their infrastructure.

  47. So what happens when everyone of means has a home generator and demand shifts to the gas grid during these kinds of events?

    –second and third order effects, shut downs and disasters, until the lessons learned incorporate the new information.

    n

  48. So if you try to investigate leaks, and you want to look at Dems or reporters, you get fired. But make up sh!t about Reps and attack conservatives, spy on Presidential candidates, and you get promoted.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9684855/Justice-official-resigning-amid-uproar-Dems-subpoenas.html

    Banana

    n

    Oh, this is rich.

    Pelosi said she didn’t buy Barr’s and Sessions’ ignorance.

    ‘The Justice Department has been rogue under President Trump in so many respects,’ she said.

  49. A state-appointed executor will prevent a lot of mischief…

    I didn’t know one could do that. Just Texas, or anywhere? How does it work? I’ll assume no successor executor was named. I’ll also guess that beneficiaries can ask for one instead of the appointed executor?

    @Lynn

    How’s the server?

  50. I didn’t know one could do that. Just Texas, or anywhere? How does it work? I’ll assume no successor executor was named. I’ll also guess that beneficiaries can ask for one instead of the appointed executor?

    Dunno, but we will certainly learn.

    Rejection of the executor responsibility was something I heard Dave Ramsey talk about with a caller one night.

    Ramsey said that the joke in the estate planning/family law legal community is that the “executor” is the child the deceased liked the least. He added that the family members who are “liked” vs. those who are “trusted” are often different; they certainly were in the case of my father-in-law.

  51. “ERCOT issues ‘Conservation Warning’ as temps rise”
    https://www.chron.com/weather/article/ERCOT-blackout-Warning-heat-wave-Texas-reactions-16246852.php

    “It’s technically not even summer yet, but things are already getting hot for ERCOT.
    The Electric Reliability Council of Texas tweeted a warning Monday advising Texans as a whole to “safely reduce their electric use” due to hot weather around the state.”

    Bernie ! Bernie ! Bernie !

  52. I’ve been writing crappy Fortran code for 45 years

    Is there another kind of FORTRAN code?

    Crappy is the highest level for Fortran code. To get that level you must use at least two letters for all variable names.

    The next highest level is ThisSucks!. Single character variable names are common and encouraged. After all, everyone knows that V stands for Vapor, right ?

    And then the bottom level is WhatTheHell?. This level does not even declare variables, they just use implicit declaration anywhere they appear (the default for Fortran). For instance E0 and EO are actually two separate variables but your code treats them as one variable. Try debugging that crap.

  53. “… executor of the will to get paid 5% of the total. She won’t do that…”  Having been executor for two quite simple wills I say take the money, it will cost about that much out of pocket and time.

  54. I finished my taxes. I gave all my paperwork to our CPA. I hate doing taxes.

    I just got confirmation from TurboTax that the IRS accepted our 40 page 2020 tax return and is going to return the $3,600 that we overpaid them in three weeks or less. I am just happy that we did not owe them any more taxes.

    The wife is going to turn over her father’s estate tax return to a CPA that goes to our church. She has had it. She is going to send the IRS $6,000 and a delay form. And pray.

  55. So what happens when everyone of means has a home generator and demand shifts to the gas grid during these kinds of events?

    gas grids have line pack and more inertia, and usually , the ability to move mass on a one or two day window in states as yours


  56. “safely reduce their electric use”

    Rush hour at my house started at 4pm. CPS Energy reset the Nest thermostat to 78F.

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  57. Crappy is the highest level for Fortran code. To get that level you must use at least two letters for all variable names.

    It is possible to write much crappier C code. Try no indention and in-line function instantiations in addition to two letter variable names.

    And I won’t even touch what is possible with templates and C++. I saw plenty of that at the last job.

  58. On solar:

    I posted an article here, some years back, about a guy who got tired of storms taking him off grid. He built a small home with an out building to hold a ton of batteries and stalk mounted panels, completely off grid. The bottom line was in the 7 figures. His last name was Ford. Yeah, one of those Fords.

    Maybe live in a Prius for several years. There are vids on YT on people who do it.

    Of course, there is the Hydrogen House project. This dude has many propane tanks that he converted to hydrogen. He generates the hydrogen by electrolysis of water using power from solar panels. He then has a fuel cell and battery system for when he needs power. Works but he spends a lot of time maintaining it.
    https://www.hydrogenhouseproject.org/

    Don’t light a match in his yard.

  59. “safely reduce their electric use”

    Rush hour at my house started at 4pm. CPS Energy reset the Nest thermostat to 78F.

    Note to self, never get a Nest thermostat.

    Oh wait, I will just throw this note on the pile of notes that I have written about the Nest thermostats.

    BTW, on Labor Day of 1999, I had my a/c unit controlled by HL&P for a credit of $20/month on my two story 2,400 ft2 house. When it hit 113 F in Sugar Land that day, they turned off my a/c from noon until 6pm or 7pm. The upstairs was well over 90 F. The downstairs was 85 F. The a/c control was removed the next month.

  60. Crappy is the highest level for Fortran code. To get that level you must use at least two letters for all variable names.

    It is possible to write much crappier C code. Try no indention and in-line function instantiations in addition to two letter variable names.

    And I won’t even touch what is possible with templates and C++. I plenty of that at the last job.

    Yeah, but you have to work at it. Fortran encourages crappy code.

    And I have forbidden templates in our code. We only use the Standard Template Library.

  61. For supper last night I browned an 80/20 chub of hamburger.  Added a not quite full rice cooker’s scoop of rice, browned that a bit, too.  A can of diced tomatoes.  A heaping measuring tablespoon of Fiesta Spanish Rice seasoning.  Added a tomato can’s worth of water.  Because I had it, a tablespoon or so of tomato paste.  Black pepper.  Once it was steaming I turned the burner down to low and put the lid on.  That would be, on my range and with my skillet, “the high side of the O in LO”.  Whatever works for you to have a slow simmer.  Let it cook for 40 minutes so.  Long enough to take a shower and watch Wheel of Fortune.  I did stir a couple of times.

    All it needed was a bit of salt.

    Call it Spanish Rice with Taco Meat.  Pretty darn good.

    I’ll find out how the leftovers are in an hour or so.

     

     

  62. Is private insurance really illegal in Canada?

    You cannot purchase private insurance for anything covered by the basic health-care system. A doctor cannot accept a payment from anyone but the government for providing that service or accept an additional payment (top-up) for performing that service. You can buy private coverage for anything outside the system (e.g.: dental care). An important distinction to understand: In Canada, I don’t have health insurance, I have public health care. Since it is not insurance there is none of the “pre-existing condition” situation that can cause someone to stay in the same job (and suffer abuse from the employer) because they can’t afford to lose coverage for a health problem at a new employer. In that sense, a public health care system makes job mobility much more fluid in Canada. I would like to see the option of buying coverage in addition to the public system (as Marcelo described for Australia), but that is not allowed in Canada.

    There is another problem. One of my friends was born and raised in Canada. Last year, she brought her 89 year old mother down to Texas for the winter. Her mother did not have health insurance for the USA. She stayed for six months minus a day. If she had another stroke they were going to throw her on a plane to Canada.

  63. What is certain, the IRS will get their pound(s) of flesh.

    Oh, sure. And, hopefully, she filed every year, unlike my father-in-law.

    I wasn’t aware of the 5% fee for the executor in Texas. I think we ended up with all of the taxes and expenses for the estate while my sister-in-law skated with half of the IRA cashouts and proceeds from selling whatever my father-in-law owned that was worth anything — not much but he had some guns where the purchase was media-inspired, including a “Dirty Harry” 357.

    My wife was at a disadvantage to her sister in dealing with the probate lawyer. SIL is an ex-stripper who smokes, and that combination carries a lot of soft power in a legal situation dealing with Y chromosomes in The South, especially in the case of a repressed lawyer, closet smoker, Harvard educated, and engaged to a debutante.

    God, my FIL’s probate was a mess.

    But, but, but, I thought that all strippers had a heart of gold ?
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooker_with_a_heart_of_gold

  64. Freefall: Florence Has Credit
    http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff3700/fc03604.htm

    Ok, Sam and Florence’s spaceship needs a second nuclear reactor for redundancy. And Sam found a nuclear bomb plant that is run by robots who have nothing to do. And Florence has a HUGE credit with the robot community. Win !

    Of course, they are assuming that the robots can build a nuclear reactor that is controlled past the first second of nuclear criticality.

  65. And I have forbidden templates in our code. We only use the Standard Template Library.

    Boost has some really useful components. Bits and pieces of Boost tend to find their way into the Standard Library over time.

  66. “Texas grid operator urges electricity conservation through Friday as temperatures rise”
    https://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/texas-power-grid-conserve-ercot-16247092.php

    “Texas’ main power grid struggled to keep up with the demand for electricity Monday, prompting the operator to ask Texans to conserve power until Friday.”

    “The Electric Reliability Council of Texas said in a statement Monday that a significant number of power plant outages combined with expected record use of electricity due to hot weather has resulted in tight grid conditions. Approximately 11,000 megawatts of generation is offline for repairs, or enough to power 2.2 million homes on a hot summer day.”

    I have been hearing that many gas turbines were wrecked or damaged in the February freeze in Texas. If so, unless you have a spare $20 million gas turbine sitting on your site, getting a gas turbine rebuilt can be up to 18 months. Add Covid to that and another 12 months might not be unusual.

    It is going to be a long summer in Texas.

  67. And I have forbidden templates in our code. We only use the Standard Template Library.

    Boost has some really useful components. Bits and pieces of Boost tend to find their way into the Standard Library over time.

    I forgot about Boost. But, we do not use Boost. Yet.


  68. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas tweeted a warning Monday advising Texans as a whole to “safely reduce their electric use” due to hot weather around the state.”

    Of course then there are the “Well, if everybody else cuts back then we can leave our A/C at 71, no one will notice” people.

  69. @dkreck

    Can it get more stupid than this?

    https://www.farmprogress.com/livestock/oregon-initiative-would-ban-animal-slaughter-breeding

    Neighboring states should let it be known that if such is passed, they are ready to enact prohibitions on meat export to Oregon, to protect their own corporations and citizens from ensnarement. And have their U.S. Senators introduce legislation to make such prohibitions exempt from the Commerce Clause, as well as prohibit import of any meat from OUS.

    May as well go the last mile and make cannibalism legal in Oregon, too.

  70. May as well go the last mile and make cannibalism legal in Oregon, too.

    As a former resident in the neighboring state of Washington, I abhor the implication that the State of Oregon is a haven for cannibalism. It is well known that they now have the problem relatively under control …

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  71. Neighboring states should let it be known that if such is passed, they are ready to enact prohibitions on meat export to Oregon, to protect their own corporations and citizens from ensnarement. And have their U.S. Senators introduce legislation to make such prohibitions exempt from the Commerce Clause, as well as prohibit import of any meat from OUS.

    No milk for the Tillamook Dairy either.

    The facility is a huge economic engine and tourist attraction on the Oregon Coast. On a nice July or August day, 10,000 people can go through that place to watch cheese being sliced/wrapped and eat the complementary curds.


  72. On a nice July or August day, 10,000 people can go through that place

    Been there, done that. Even got some ice cream at the place. The cheese was quite good.

  73. Actually, the farmers should just write their own initiative to ban the sale of meat and diary products in Portland and the suburbs thereof. They could start a co-op to send their products out of state–probably be oversubscribed in a week.

    Just think, after a couple generations the building code in Portland could be changed so the ceilings were only 6′. Save soooo much energy and materials. Show us the way, Portland!

     

  74. Incrementalism. Animals don’t HAVE rights. People have rights.

    Cows don’t GAF about artificial insemination as rape, they can’t conceptualize and don’t care.

    That kind of nonsense means we really do need a culling event. Too many other people will get caught by chance so I’m not calling for one, but DAMN that is some contra-survival nonsense.
    n


  75. so I’m not calling for one

    Not to worry. I’ll do it for you:

    We have too many stupid people. I call for a removal of all safety warning labels and a repeal of all laws which cut down on activities which would harm the doer. I call for a removal of subsidies for the less capable and their children.

    If these measures do not suffice to reduce the population of stupids, I will bring forth the most deadly weapon in any arsenal: the immediate death of everyone who annoys me.

  76. April 1, 2121

    President Trump, fresh from his latest regeneration and re-election with 95% of the Real Vote, announced legislation to make the Portland Free Zone a national wildlife sanctuary, declaring “The Portland Dwarves, long protected from fossil fuels, meat, poultry, dairy and other things they have declared as “too icky”, continue to shrink with each generation and have reached the point where all outside visits must be by black and white video, as they are increasingly susceptible to being stepped on and show no sign of developing any resistance to total catatonia induced by viewing of the Modern Orange Man holographic makeup so favored by the rest of the country.”

    In other news, announcement of a new wormhole train to Wolf 1061c sent the DOW surging past 1,000,000,000 for the first time ever.

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  77. I just checked my comment yesterday about downvoting Nick’s one comment. Seven downvotes! Woo-hoo! Even discounting my own downvote, that’s six downvotes! Woo-hoo! Is that a record?

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  78. Good day to own a power station. $900/MWh.

    So what happens when everyone of means has a home generator and demand shifts to the gas grid during these kinds of events?

    As I’ve noted before, Atmos cut service to a fancy neighborhood in Leander during the February ice storms for several hours because demand spiked suddenly in a way the utility had never seen before, endangering their infrastructure.

    In the summer time, there is plenty of natural gas. The natural gas grid can easily support 2X to 5X the amount of summer usage. The grid operators will get on their knees and thank you.

    In the winter time, whoa boy ! Hard to know as you will be competing with home heating systems, natural gas fired generation plants, freezing well heads, etc, etc, etc.

    I am getting my generator for the summer and hoping that it will work in the winter. We had plenty of natural gas at the house during the freeze. In fact, I was running the fireplace natural gas burner flames at ten inches height and got the den up to 75 F. My bedroom was 50 F though.

    We have four natural gas wells in our neighborhood though. The wellhead pressures are over 500 psig. Maybe 800 psig, they blew them a couple of years ago and the flames went 150 foot in the sky for two days each.

  79. so I’m not calling for one

    Not to worry. I’ll do it for you:

    We have too many stupid people. I call for a removal of all safety warning labels and a repeal of all laws which cut down on activities which would harm the doer. I call for a removal of subsidies for the less capable and their children.

    If these measures do not suffice to reduce the population of stupids, I will bring forth the most deadly weapon in any arsenal: the immediate death of everyone who annoys me.

    The majority are not stupid. They are uneducated. Look at education in this country and see how many of their teachers are teaching Critical Race Theory or whatever that crap is.

    This nonsense in the schools did not just start. It has been going on for at least 50 years. Maybe 60 years. Two freaking generations and then some.

  80. We now have four PCs at the office upgraded to Windows 10 Pro x64 and are installing version 23 of Act! for Workgroups. I’ve never seen so much rebooting in my life. The Act! file server now has a 2 TB SSD and is faster than pig snot on a 100 F day.

    I’ve got two more 1 TB SSD drives coming tomorrow for two more PCs.

    Are we having fun yet ?

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  81. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas tweeted a warning Monday advising Texans as a whole to “safely reduce their electric use” due to hot weather around the state.”

    Of course then there are the “Well, if everybody else cuts back then we can leave our A/C at 71, no one will notice” people.

    Hey, I resemble that remark !

  82. According to the local Faux News Weather, Austin hit 100 today.

    They’re also getting pumped for the tropical system in the Caribbean. Gas shortage for July 4th!

  83. It’s not because people are different races, have different genetics, or different attitudes toward disease, it’s inequities. How cool is that? There will ALWAYS be inequity, so the hustlers have finally latched onto something that can supply an endless gravy train.

    From the CDC.

    Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have left people from some racial and ethnic minority groups at higher risk for COVID-19. Since the beginning of the pandemic, these groups have had higher rates of COVID-19 infection, severe illness, hospitalization, and death. We all have a part in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and ensuring everyone can be as healthy as possible. Read more about COVID-19 and health equity in the COVID Data Tracker Weekly Review.

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  84. No comments:

    Windows 10 Support Ends on October 14, 2025

    They are also signalling to Corporate America that VB6 app support sunsets on that same day.

    We’ll see. Ending VB6 will be *tough*.

    When I did scab training at the Death Star, the customer service desktop was heavily dependent on 3270 terminal windows and VB6 apps doing screen scraping of mainframe interfaces to allow provisioning of service across what were essentially five different Baby Bells, pasted together over the years by SBC’s CEO, Ed Whitacre: Southwest Bell, Ameritech, Bell South, PacBell, and SNET.

    I’ve heard of other stories of VB6 dependency, some much more severe, particularly on Wall Street after Steve Jobs sold NeXT to Apple.


  85. They’re doing a better job than I expected in keeping Joe’s puppet masters behind the curtains.

    Biden – and his puppet masters – are arriving in Geneva today. The city center is pretty much locked down – crazy, how much security the Americans brings along, including their own vehicles, etc.. This on top of the already crazy security we are providing. Plus, of course, the minor little entourage I’m sure Putin will bring along.

    It will be interesting to see if any interesting little tidbits leak out in the local press. Probably not.

    Joe and Jill had multiple protocol breaches…they can’t behave in other people’s homes, or don’t know any better, which bugs the cr@p out of me.

    Whatever you think of the Queen, or British royalty: fact is, you abide by other people’s protocols when visiting, unless you are deliberately trying to give offense. At this level of politics, ignorance is not an acceptable excuse.

    Which raises the question: Why would the Biden administration want to piss off the Brits?

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