Sat. Apr. 20, 2024 – 4-20 happy stoner day, or something…

Another day of warm and moist, and probably even wet… forecast here calls for moderate rain and gentle breezes. Wife and D2 will be at the BOL and she says they are predicting heavy rain and stormy weather…

They are going up with a couple of D2’s friends for a girl’s weekend. I’m home with D1. I’ve got work to do, she has a Girl Scout thing…

Spent yesterday cleaning and sorting, and doing pickups. Also doing some rat proofing. I found several bait boxes outside that were empty so I’ll refill those. The attic ones were untouched. I think I found the route in, at least on one side of the house. The siding has a corner trim that is hollow inside. One of the places I heard scrabbling has a corner molding, and there are chew marks and a hole at the top, which leads into the soffit. There was some black belly dirt on the vinyl soffit material showing that something was moving between the vinyl and the plywood, a one inch space. I covered the hole with hardware cloth (stiff wire mesh), rolled and shaped hardware cloth plugs for each end of the trim piece, used the mesh to completely fill the 1″ space the width of the soffit, and then sprayfoamed the mesh to hold it in place and fill the voids. They can chew through the foam, but the sharp mesh roll inside should discourage them.

I found a “mousehole” behind the washing machine, where something has been coming out of the wall to eat the dog’s food at night. Plugged that with 3 inches of rolled up mesh, and foam. I also found some holes in the wall that were around plumbing under the sink in the kitchen, that looked like they were enlarged and smoothed by teeth. Meshed that all up too. No foam there, because of the need to access the plumbing in the wall later. The Hav-a-heart live traps in the attic are untouched. I’ll set some modified snap traps today. With the access to the dog food cut off, they should be interested in baited traps.

In other news, my grapevine has set fruit, lots of it. This year I’m going to try some bird netting around it to try to save some for us. The lime tree in a pot is setting fruit too. The peach tree finally gave up. It is completely dead and broke off at ground level. Never got a single fruit from that tree. The apple tree isn’t vigorous and is late getting leaves and blooms. I might move it to the BOL. All but one or two of my blueberry bushes have died too. I’ll move any survivors to the BOL to join the newly planted bushes. They never were very vigorous or productive here. Collards are still growing, this is the third season for the same plants, I think. Could be the fourth.

In the last couple of days I also broke down and froze about 30 pounds of meat. Freezers are full. It’s a good feeling.

Today I’ll be doing more stuff around the house. I have to redo the repair to the tub. The cleaning crew scrubbed and chipped the epoxy away. Either they work far to hard or I didn’t get as good a bond as I thought. Still sucks to have to redo work.

It would also be nice to get the 3D printers all set up in their new spot in the “toy” room. That’s the room we use as a library and catch all. Wife suggested a narrow table against a wall to put the machines on and I am willing to oblige. I don’t want to set up the laser engraver until I have an enclosure however. I won one this week but it was missing when I did my pickup so they’ll either find it or I’ll bid on one in some other auction. It’s the second time I was bidding on one. I know I could make one but I don’t need another project. Just getting the printers running will be project enough, then getting kid 2 set up with a toolchain so she can make stuff will take even more time. Besides the obvious benefit of having the machines running, it will get stuff out of piles, corners, and stacks, and into one organized place. First I need to clear a space for the table, then I need to assemble the table… Fractal are the projects at Casa De Nick…

It will be a chance to learn some new things. That’s always good. And the kid has an interest, which is also good.

Try some new things. I can guarantee that actually doing it will be different than thinking about doing it.

And stack of course.


42 Comments and discussion on "Sat. Apr. 20, 2024 – 4-20 happy stoner day, or something…"

  1. Greg Norton says:

    Ditto. Times are much changed and far more dangerous. The proliferation of gross demeaning violent  porn has shifted ‘normal’. More corruption of all things going on in this poor country. 

    The pr0n was always there, but the Windows 95 project put the most effective delivery mechanism ever, the TCP/IP stack,  into every home and made BillG, the biggest sexual predator in history, the richest man in the world.

    At least for a while.

  2. Greg Norton says:

    I don’t want to set up the laser engraver until I have an enclosure however. I won one this week but it was missing when I did my pickup so they’ll either find it or I’ll bid on one in some other auction. It’s the second time I was bidding on one. I know I could make one but I don’t need another project.

    Builder Swine, the contractor we briefly worked with in Florida, had a commercial scale laser engraver installed in his garage which required installation of an AC unit which had to run whenever he powered the system.

    I’m practically a Florida native so I always wondered about the effectiveness of the AC lowering the humidity to within operating range of the laser just cooling sporadically, but our relationship with that guy didn’t last long enough to find out.

    I’m hoping that he ruined a $600k capital investment.

  3. brad says:

    Interesting discussion yesterday about teenage girls and self-defense. While I don’t have daughters, I did teach judo to kids (girls and boys) for several years. My thoughts, in no particular order:

    – You do want to make girls aware of dangers, and you do want them to be careful. However, you don’t want them to be scared of their own shadows. I’ve known women like that, scared of the dark, scared of forests, scared of parking lots. That’s no way to live.

    – I prefer martial arts training to self-defense classes. Martial arts is a sport, which incidentally teaches you self-defense. The confidence and fitness gained from regular, years-long training changes your whole outlook on life. If you carry yourself with confidence, you are less likely to become a victim in the first place.

    – Also, self-defense classes tend to be short, just a few meetings. The movements you learn are not going to stick nearly as well as movements practiced over months and years. I only ever learned one useful thing in a self-defense class, and that stuck with me only because it meshed well with a throw I already knew from judo.

    Which martial art? I would suggest either karate or judo for younger girls. For older girls, possibly ju jitsu instead of judo. Things like Kendo, Aikido or Capoeira are less useful in terms of self-defense.

  4. Denis says:

    Isn’t that what killed our friend and much missed OFD, in pretty short order?

    Yes.  although I understand that it doesn’t have to get that bad.

    Still it’s not a great diagnosis.

    GBS is treatable. The sooner treatment starts, the better the chances of avoiding permanent nerve damage.

    My buddy was diagnosed with GBS recently. He thought he was just weak after a bout of flu, and was very fortunate that his GP picked up on the symptoms during a planned routine checkup. The consulting neurologist had him in hospital the next day, and actually wanted to take him in immediately, but for his need to re-house his dog first. Three weeks of hospital, the first of which he spent on IV medication. Two weeks of in-patient physiotherapy, followed now by outpatient physio five days a week. Progress towards recovery is measurable, but glacially slow.

  5. Greg Norton says:

    My buddy was diagnosed with GBS recently.

    Lots of people are getting weird diagnoses as of late. The big one I’ve noticed is strokes among people my age.

    Several friends have unexpected cancers which advanced quickly. Ironically, one stopped speaking to me for about a year in 2020/21 over my Covid vaccination stand, which, as I correctly pointed out, only jeopardized my own life if I was wrong.

  6. Greg Norton says:

    Another hail forecast for North Austin today.

    The last year has been really strange in terms of the frequency of forecasts for severe hail, and two storms in the vicinity since the beginning of October have been very expensive for the insurance mafia.

  7. lpdbw says:

    GBS?  Check.

    Strokes in young people?  Check.

    Myocarditis?  Check.

    Quickly advancing cancers?  Check.

    But of course it has nothing to do with the vaccine.

    OBTW, my best friend, in his 50’s, just discovered a brain tumor.   Thankfully, he’s headed for surgery, not radiation, so I give him a 50/50 chance of survival after a lengthy and traumatic period of treatment.

    I don’t know who’s going to take care of his wife during treatment and if the worst outcome happens.  She has a rare autoimmune disease (predating Covid) and needs lots of help.  Including monthly IVIG treatments and annual hospitalizations.  The hospitalizations are due to insurance snafus.  They deny the IVIG, she degrades, she gets admitted, the hospital yells at the insurance company, she gets her IVIG for another year.  Rinse, repeat.

  8. drwilliams says:

    Secret Service Protection for RFK Jr.? Why Alejandro Mayorkas Said No

    Presidential candidates are eligible for Secret Service protection at the discretion of the homeland security secretary and a committee of congressional leaders. President Joe Biden also has authority to approve requests.

    In his July 21 rejection letter, Mayorkas copied members of the Candidate Protection Advisory Committee: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, and Senate Sergeant at Arms Karen Gibson.

    This article is from February, but shows who is on the advisory committee.

    The House Speaker and Senate Minority leader need to go on record about the latest denial, and Ms. Gibson needs to be asked. Schumer and Jeffries need to be asked, also, but as they have both repeatedly breached their oaths of office there is no expectation that they would do anything else in this case.

  9. Nick Flandrey says:

    Soon there will be coffee.

    Both kids out of the house at the moment.   D1 at her GS thing, D2 with W headed to or at the BOL.

    I need to get moving and get some stuff done.


  10. Nick Flandrey says:

    IIRC GBS was specifically listed as a potential complication of the vax.


  11. Nick Flandrey says:

    There are a lot of 50-somethings dying in my old industry, live entertainment.   More than there used to be reported.   The industry was heavily vaxed.   The obit section of the trade mag shocks me some months.


  12. MrAtoz says:

    My 25-year-old Herman Miller Aeron chair failed yesterday. For some reason, the cap on the bottom of the hydraulic lift came off. Several washers and plates crapped out of the bottom (along with some black grease) and the base started scraping on the floor. There are a couple of places in SA that are supposed to be authorized repair companies listed by HM. I’ll call one next week to see what they say and if there is a reasonable repair. Aerons are great chairs.

    In the meantime, I’m using my Steelcase Gesture for work. I usually use it for gaming.

  13. SteveF says:

    The guy attached to the barrel? “Hold my beer and pass me the det cord.”

    Nah. Put a plastic bag over his head. He’ll figure out how to let go and remove the bag … or he won’t.

    But of course it has nothing to do with the vaccine.

    Of course not! It was declared to be safe and effective after extensive testing or something.

    Now, far be it for me to be nasty and spiteful and to carry a grudge, but there are a number of people who I kinda hope will develop turbo cancer. Not the ordinary schlubs who got the clot shot under pressure or because they believed the lies. No, the targets of my ire are those who screamed for “deniers” to be locked up, to be denied medical care, to be fired, to have to pay special taxes. Every one of those suppurating anal fissures needs to die in great agony, with the duration of their death calculated to cause maximum pain but minimum expense to the taxpayer or insurance companies.

  14. SteveF says:

    My 25-year-old Herman Miller Aeron chair failed yesterday. For some reason, the cap on the bottom of the hydraulic lift came off.

    We told you and told you to cut out the snacking. Did you listen?

  15. Greg Norton says:

    IIRC GBS was specifically listed as a potential complication of the vax.

    GBS was listed as a J&J vaccine complication and used as one of the arguments to get it removed from widespread distribution.

    The government never revoked approval from J&J, but try to find that jab in your area.

  16. crawdaddy says:

    In general, I agree with SteveF, but this here foldie might be considered “safe and effective”:

    The weird little hook catches on the seam where the back edge of the front pocket meets the trousers. With a little practice, it is locked open by the time your arm stops moving backward. If one pulls it forward when removing from the pocket, it stays closed, and you can show off your completely manual tool with the cool bottle opener. That may be of some use to those of you living in areas with laws against “assisted opening” tools.

    I have one of these on me whenever I am somewhere that does not allow more distance-effective tools.

  17. Nick Flandrey says:

    Interesting mechanics.    I don’t like curved blades, like the Karambit, because it isn’t where your brain expects it to be.  At least my brain.   That means it’s always somewhere I didn’t intend and that is dangerous to me.

    I carried a Spyderco rescue in CA and would point out to karens that it was a safety tool, as it couldn’t be used for stabbing…   wicked sharp slicing tool of course, but me driving it into my belly and chest was usually either impressive or psycho enough they dropped any objection.

    A bonus was that the heavy thick blade made it easy to snap open with a wrist flick.


  18. Nick Flandrey says:

    Buddy of mine got his young adult daughter the generic version of this–Boker-Dessert-Warrior-Kalashnikov–184953 


  19. Nick Flandrey says:

    Time to hit the road.


  20. SteveF says:

    Today’s a palindrome day if you write the date as M/DD/YYYY. And if you write it as M/DD/YY, not only today but the next nine days are palindrome days.

  21. drwilliams says:

    There are a number of blades designed to catch the pocket and open.

    I’ve carried the Cold Steel Ti-lite and CRKT M16 with “Carson flipper” or LAWKS.  All work quite well with a bit of practice.

  22. lynn says:

    Buddy of mine got his young adult daughter the generic version of this–Boker-Dessert-Warrior-Kalashnikov–184953

    It is noteworthy that the 50 year old guy just convicted of defending himself in Wisconsin against a mob of teens used a Swiss Army Knife.  I have carried many for the last 50+ years.

  23. lpdbw says:

    I was going to upgrade my knife, because there is no such thing as an illegal knife in Texas.  I have a knock-off (not Microtech) OTF that I have reasonable confidence in. 

    But then I remembered that I travel to other hostile places, like Illinois.  It would be just my luck to get caught with an automatic assualt bladed weapon in such a commie place.

    When I traveled to Indiana and Illinois a couple weeks ago, for the eclipse, I had to make sure I didn’t bring along my AR-15 pistol.  I can carry it loaded in my truck in Texas, and can’t even have it in my possession in Illinois.

    FWIW, my EDC knife is a 2 inch folder I carry in my watch pocket.  I open boxes and pry things with it.

    For self-defense, there’s a .380 or 9mm.

  24. Brad says:

    I don’t get why everyone doesn’t carry a knife. It’s a basic tool – I use mine for one thing or another literally every day.

    Not sure it’s useful for defense though. Knife fighting isn’t something most of us really know much about.

  25. Greg Norton says:

    What?! You guys in TX let this chance slip through your fingers??

    Texas isn’t a Republican state anymore.

  26. Geoff Powell says:

    In UK, folding knives, with blades up to 3 inches long, are legal for pocket carry, provided they do not lock. Lock knives may be legal, but you better have a d*mn good reason for carrying it, if PC Plod takes it into his head to ask you about it.

    This applies whether the blade is straight or serrated (like a saw). Blade length is measured along the entire blade, including the hinge, not just the edge.

    Flick knives, with a spring-loaded opening mechanism, are illegal.

    These rules apply even if the knife blade is part of a multi-tool, such as a Leatherman.

    I own 3 such multi-tools, although I don’t routinely carry any one of them. One has a 2 inch blade, the others have 3 inch.

    After the school shooting at Dunblane in Scotland, mere possession, let alone carry (even concealed) of a handgun is illegal. Ditto rifles, even bolt action Lee Enfields (think M1 Garand).

    Shotguns are permitted, but must be licenced, and PC Plod can insist on inspecting your gun cabinet at any reasonable time.


  27. Geoff Powell says:

    “gun cabinet” is a lockable box, secured to the structure of your house, andd I believe the keys may not be kept near it, for fear busy little fingers may find the key, unlock the cabinet, and play with the gun.

    All the gun info may be out of date, since most of it was gleaned from my brother-in-law, who used to be an English Civil War re-enactor thirty or more years ago. He may still be, for all I know.


  28. drwilliams says:

    @Geoff Powell

    In UK, folding knives, with blades up to 3 inches long, are legal for pocket carry, provided they do not lock. Lock knives may be legal, but you better have a d*mn good reason for carrying it, if PC Plod takes it into his head to ask you about it.

    When I visited the UK in the 70’s I had at least three knives: A Swiss Army Tinker w/ my cameras, an Opinel (don’t remember the model, but the blade locked), and a Buck 110. 

    The knife nonsense is one of several reasons it’s unlikely I will ever go back.

  29. paul says:

    The track lights are all clean.  They look almost new.  I “pulled” the bulbs in on the fixtures to get a bit more of a spot light effect.  Once I like the new aiming I can let them out as needed for more flood.

    Clear as mud, I know.  But they do look nice.

    Penny is clingy today.  Leans hard on my legs when I pet her.  I suppose she’s missing someone too.  Buddy the Beagle is fine, I’m the only human he cares about.

    I poked around in the kitchen and you know what?  That box of yellow cake mix and box of vanilla pudding will never be used.  He had some sort of plan where you add pudding mix to to cake mix.  I could make it.  But I’d eat one serving and that’s all.  To the trash. 

    Then I poked around in the cupboard over the dishwasher where we keep coffee cups and drinking glasses.  Half of it is  going to the trash.  Travel cups without matching lids.  Wine glasses that will never be used again.  A couple of Tupperware tumblers that you don’t need to hold, they are that sticky.   Pretty much “if it’s that dusty, good bye”.  This needed to be done a year ago.

    I finally changed the shower curtain.  I found the one I bought last year.  It was in a very safe place.   The old one looked ok, it wasn’t black with mildew or anything,  but it was stiff. 

    Just another day.  Cloudy and dark.  It’s suppose to rain but so far just enough of a sprinkle that Penny really liked me drying her off after she went to the feed shed to inspect the cat food  pan.  Inspecting the cat food pan is one of her jobs.
    It is a pan, an old frying pan.  Attached with a scrap of speaker wire to a small cinder block so it stays where I can get to it without needing a garden rake to get out from under the building.

    The rain seems to have started.  Great.  Maybe it will slack in an hour for Bed Time Potty Walk.

  30. SteveF says:

    I prefer martial arts training to self-defense classes.

    Brad, I take your point. I don’t think of “self-defense classes” as a one-and-done or maybe a night a week for a month. I think of it as anything where you’re learning to defend yourself in a fight or a mugging or anything similar. “Martial arts classes” are almost all what I would call fancy dance classes. Unless you spar fairly often and there’s a good chance that you’ll take a hard punch in the stomach, you aren’t learning martial arts, you’re dancing. Maybe it’s a good workout but it ain’t preparing you to defend yourself. I had thought that it was just a US thing because of fear of lawsuits, but I hear that even in South Korea and the PRC, it’s a real challenge to find a class where you actually fight (or rather, spar full contact) and don’t just do forms, reaction drills, and play fighting.

    I acknowledge that my usage of the terms is idiosyncratic, but I have trouble talking about martial arts classes without a sneer.

  31. Nick Flandrey says:

    My daughter’s dog won’t go outside if it’s raining so you have to watch him like a hawk.  It’s just starting to mist at the house.   I’ve been driving thru rain and even storm cells all afternoon, but then I’ve been up to Conroe, and down to Sugar Land, and even almost to downtown.

    In between cells it’s almost nice.

    My wife says it’s threatening but hasn’t rained yet at the BOL.

    Time to order chinese food for me and the brat.

  32. paul says:

    I had a thought.  Ouch.

    Instead of mailing each other CDs of music and having to leak our home addresses and pay postage and the threat of some a-hole claiming copyright  infringement and all of that, how about sharing (some how) what music you have?  

    Like a print screen of the contents of your music folder.  uTorrent will take care of file transfers.

     I mean, I have 125 GB of tunes.  That’s a lot of CDs or DVDs to burn and mail.  And I’d bet at least half is garbage to you. 

  33. paul says:

    Ordering chinese or anything sounds good.  I’m too far in the  sticks. 

    Penny walks out under the eaves and she gets out just long enough to do her business.

    Buddy?  Oh, he’s on a leash and he knows what to do.  It’s off the front deck and around the house, under the eaves,  to where the elec meter and heatpump are.   He trots out 10 feet to poop and it’s right back under the eaves.  It’s kind of cool.  He’s a smart dog.

  34. Greg Norton says:

    Ordering chinese or anything sounds good.  I’m too far in the  sticks. 

    Marble Falls has China Kitchen, but we’ve never eaten there.

  35. SteveF says:

    Riddle me this: Why has Hitler’s birthday been repurposed as Stoner Appreciation Day?

  36. paul says:

    Yeah, but Marble Falls is about 17 miles from me. 

  37. Ken Mitchell says:

    Why has Hitler’s birthday been repurposed as Stoner Appreciation Day?

    Not that I ever cared, but I read once that the CA penal code against drugs were in Section 4.20? Or something similar to that?

  38. Nick Flandrey says:

    Watched “Grown ups” with Adam Sandler tonight with the brat.   It was a funny little movie and had some good laughs.   Kid loved it.   She picked it.


    Heading to bed. 


  39. brad says:

     “Martial arts classes” are almost all what I would call fancy dance classes.

    SteveF has a point. That’s how I remember karate, from when I was a kid. There was never any actual contact. Judo is better in that sense, because it requires contact with your opponent. At least in our Dojo, every training session also included sparring. The Ju Jitsu group in the same dojo was much the same.

    Still, and especially in the US, I can imagine that fear of lawsuits will make some dojos morph into dance schools. Also fear of contact with girls. We sparred with the women on a semi-regular basis. In the kids’ classes I taught girls as well as boys. But in the US? A guy doing a hold-down on a girl? A male instructor showing a technique on a girl? I’d be worried…

    I don’t know how it is in the US, but here we have both the commercial schools, and also clubs. The clubs are the better place to be. They may not cost much less (they still have rent, equipment, etc.), but they exist for the sport and for the benefit of their members. The price to be paid: members are expected to help maintain and run the place.

    So much depends on the particular dojo. Get recommendations from other parents, read online reviews, visit the place and talk to the instructors.

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