Overview

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I got under the hood of the truck today and looked at everything, putting its structure to visual memory. It was a good day for it, 70s, sunny. But most of the rest of the day was focused elsewhere, letting what I saw soak in. Windows were open for the afternoon, airing out the house.


Thawing ground chuck for spaghetti sauce. Let them eat pasta. Plenty of tortillas, tamales, crackers, pizzas, pot pies, cookies, cake, chips, no shortage of bread alternatives that need eating. And no shortage of food in general.


One thing I want to get for testing is a can of starting fluid, to verify the ignition. Dry plugs pretty much say it all, but there is always a chance of dual issues. So I may borrow a vehicle tomorrow.


I had a hard time raising my core temp after a nap this afternoon. I almost put on my alpaca poncho. Ugh.

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Building a particle accelerator at home.

rrrrrrrrrr rrrrrrr

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The truck won’t start this morning. Starter turns over fine, but the injectors or ignition is futzed. Gas tank is full. Too cool (50°F) to stay outside and fuss with it. I’m going to let it sit in case it’s flooded from giving it gas while trying to start it. I’ll give the batteries a bump while it sits, once it warms up. So much for a loaf of bread. I have enough (two slices) for one pulled pork sandwich. Maybe I can get delivery if worse comes to worst. I have plenty of tortillas and other foods.


One surprise this morning is the DPS patrol car parked out front next door. I guess I found out what my new neighbor does for a living.


It’s been raining off and on, fairly heavy Friday night/Saturday morning. Weather will be a ping pong match for the next week.


Spaghetti sauce is the next cooking project. I need to thaw the ground chuck.





I pulled a plug after cranking for several seconds, and the plug was dry. Fuel is not making it into the cylinders. At least I now know the process for troubleshooting.

Hmm

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I woke up and decided not to cook the jambalaya today. No real reason for it, just decided that the fridge has enough food without adding more. I’ll settle for a turkey/bacon/provolone sandwich. And there’s pulled pork. Maybe tamales if I’m still hungry. I will thaw the strawberry puree and poundcake.


I replaced the washer in the tub faucet. I removed the flat washer and installed a cone washer, as should have been done last time. 13/16 box end wrench was a perfect fit, easy off, easy on. Snugged up easy and the washer is perfect. Now hot water is nominal again. Laundry got done.


Windows are open, 76°F. Moist, chance of rain from the Pacific. So far, it’s been off and on sprinkles.


I reintroduced Myka to the fuzzy throw on the long table, and she has taken back to it. Of course, she still prefers the LZB2. But I have no qualms in moving her now when she doesn’t respond.


No new AI imaging in 4 days. I’m up over 600 credits, up from 320. I think I’m done with entering the challenges. I don’t need the credits that much now, and the disappointment when the score drops isn’t worth it. I’m 3 followers shy of a 20 credit badge. I need to produce to raise that.


neighbors

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I have neighbors again, with two tiny children (1-2 years old), as best I can tell. There are a number of extras helping with unloading the moving van, so it’s largely guessing the specifics at this point. It is on the noisy side at the moment. Quiet nights ahead (hopefully, I hear a moaning dog).


I made the bank run yesterday, a nice day weather wise, 50s and 60s, partly cloudy. Got a box of Popeye’s spicy for the freezer. I also picked up my script refill and got a bag of ice, so errand running has been exhausted for the time being. I can laugh at Thanksgiving and Black Friday from afar.


Jambalaya and strawberry puree on poundcake planned for tomorrow. Being Thursday, I may go without chicken in the jambalaya for trash reasons. Chicken broth is an alternative option. Forecast calls for 70s today and tomorrow. I could open the windows, but I haven’t done so yet. The risotto is gone, cornbread and gravy/spuds will be dinner tonight. The pulled pork in the fridge hasn’t been touched yet, having sampled it Monday. It won’t last long once the older items vanish.


I moved a conked out Myka off the LZB2 and onto the fuzzy throw she once used as a bed. Having now rediscovered it, she seems to want to stay there.


I plan on fixing the bathtub faucet this afternoon. I think I’ve filled my sleeping quota.

Post-partium

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TRD is over. My second missed party had me listed as conspicuous in my absence. It’s what happens when one becomes synonymous, 42 years and two no-shows, ’19 and ’22, both short term health related.


It’s raining again. The bank run will probably be tomorrow or Wednesday, both forecast with fair weather.


The pulled pork production is history. Dishes washed, dried, and put away, no visual clues, outside of refrigeration, that the process ever happened. No need to cook for a few days. The aroma therapy and big cook helped me get through TRD, key seasonal elements of the experience. I miss the familiar faces.

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Final product.


Boston butt shoulder roast, sweet yellow onion, chicken broth, apple cider vinegar, pork rub (brown sugar base), minced garlic, sage, basil, oregano, marjoram, thyme. 16 hour cook time, first two hours on high temp, remainder on low. Yummy stuff, Myka approved.


There is still sausage gravy and cheese risotto in the fridge. There is plenty to carry me over to Thanksgiving. I’m thinking jambalaya. No bird this year, the freezer is plenty full without it. I have filled my lifetime quota for traditional turkeys.

Pullin’

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Boston butt at 10.5 hours, after deboning.


First pulled pork sandwich at 13 hours cook time. Yummy. Good batch.


So I’ve got sausage gravy, cheese risotto, and soon, pulled pork. Most of the pork will go in the freezer for later.


I am glad that I stayed home from TRD. I thought I had pork rub, but it was something else from the same company. So I made a run to the store. In the cold on the way home, I started coughing, and it finally stopped when I got back to the warm house. I surmised that it was a reaction of the cough reflex from lisinopril combined with the cold air. I would have been useless at the party.


Final stage

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I have reached the stage where staying in this weekend is a definite conclusion. Word I got was few of us old coots will be attending. The hard to kill have finally faltered.


I will be sitting the horde Saturday night. I requested a doggie bag, for what that might be worth.


I switched from cyan to magenta water bottles. I’m using one that has seen action, not one of the pristine reserves. I think that is a sign of confidence that I have more years to go. The weather has changed, and so has my drinking visuals, from cool to warm.


I’m about to cook sausage gravy. Everything is ready to roll in the kitchen. Just do it.


Been rolling the logistics for pulled pork around in my head; rub, spices, fluids, onion, crock, schedule… It won’t be long. The butt is in the fridge waiting patiently.


The beef stew is history, washed and dried.


It’s on the cool side, alpaca and denim weather. Surviving.

dive…

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I didn’t realize I’d gone a week without logging. But that reflects the week.


I just got in from a store run, $115 worth. I’m good through turkey day, except maybe for the cinnamon cream cheese muffins (but I got snickerdoodles), so it’s a good thing. I expect a bank run to Navasota (plus Popeye’s). And probably an ice run. Otherwise, I’m hunkered down. I still have a few trips in from the truck before I’ve finished offloading. Pant pant.


I decided to skip TRD, but with all nights down in the 30s, so did most everyone else. I have to face the facts, we’re not as ornery as we used to be. We were good while we lasted.


Boston butts were on sale for 97¢/lb, so I got a 10 lb one to replace the recently polished off batch of pulled pork. I got shrimp and scallops for the next jambalaya and shrimp cocktail (happy Myka). Cornbread to go with the last of the beef stew (happy Myka) from September. Bread and spuds for sausage gravy that is coming up. Tuna and mac to replace what I used (happy Myka). Flautas. Kolaches. Tamales. I’m set for the long haul. No turkey this year,


I am over the Moderna bivalent. It was as close to nothing as side effects can get. Now to get the flu shot. I had a sore sinus this morning, which is what delayed my Navasota run. I got over it quickly. Another round of bugs trying too get the best of me and failing. Winter is coming on, and it has it’s adaptive issues. Sleeping a fair bit. All in all, hanging in.


Still no neighbor. I can play and sing all night. I still have voice issues, but not as badly. I can sing pretty well in practice, but belting it out fails somewhere in progress. Part of the reason I decided against TRD, the weather would wreck my cords. I’m working on it at a relaxed pace.


Been thinking about a bouzouki, but the ones I want have 30mm nuts, too tight for my fingers. I would love to find one that is in the 36-38mm range.


I got a new 3qt stainless pot with glass lid to replace the one I fried yesterday. I went to warm up some water for grease cutting, then walked off and promptly forgot about it. Being stainless, it survived. It still needs a little scouring for coloration, but I don’t see any fatigue. Still, I got a new one to replace it. The fried one will take on funky jobs like boiling eggs and warming water.


I have been letting up on the AI, just about saturated with it. Still logging in and voting, racking up freee credits, over 500 now, up from 320. I won a few of the challenges, but they’re not predictable as to scoring. The random assignment of images means that the judging standards vary. So I’m not entering as regularly as I was.

Bivalent

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I had the Moderna bivalent injection this morning. Not much of a reaction, I can tell if I think about it. Otherwise it’s just background.


I have had a package of cookies in the USPS North Houston black hole for two days.


No posted test results from the sonogram yet.


Myka is pestering me a lot lately. Spoiled brat. I hate to make tuna mac because of what the TJ will do to her.


Took prizes in the AI challenge two days running. The credits add up.

Dopplered

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Just got back from the renal doppler sonogram. It took longer than I expected, and the poking with the sensor is still being felt.


The fast wasn’t that bad as far as food, but fluid… The taste wouldn’t go away. First thing I did when I got in the truck was fill my mouth from the water bottle.


There looks like a slight chance of rain on radar. Scattered showers headed this way are not too dense, more the popcorn variety.


Dealing with food on the DALL•E 2 engine. I should cook, now that I have milk in the fridge.

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Crumb cake topped muffins.

Closure

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The Dairy Queen a block over shut down. The signs are gone, the furniture removed, an empty shell. No more smell of french fries flowing through the house with an easterly breeze.


The sonogram is Monday morning, not now. My last cardiologist appointment was on a Friday, and it carried over in my mind as the day of the week. Monday morning (after midnight) is the 8 hour fast.


Looks like rain today. It was a warm night, barely out of the 80s. Wind will be from the north for a few hours, before it turns back around from off the Gulf. A warm weekend to come.


Missed the jam last night. My spirit was there, my voice wasn’t.

November

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Not much happening lately. Staying horizontal as much as I can stand it. I’m doing well enough when I’m vertical when I get sufficient downtime.


Plenty to eat. Ham and egg w/cheddar sandwiches, buttered spud and diced pork loin w/gouda. Myka approves the nibbles. Made a store run this morning. Sitting well.


My voice has been off since the fever, not bad, but not up for public display. So I’m skipping the Thursday night jam yet again. It’s been awhile since I had brisket chili. Bit I’m not suffering.


Halloween was quiet, as usual.


I start the fast tomorrow night for the sonogram.

Voted

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I got my early voting done Thursday afternoon. No line, no waiting, very few people in the room. I also got a bag of ice on the way home. Half an hour later, I made the pharmacy/grocery run that I had postponed. They didn’t fill the metoprolol, so I’ll need to go back. Got more chocolate chip cookies, even though I’m about burned out on them. Well stocked on most everything now. No need for a store run, other than pharmacy, until next week.


Not much to do around the house on day to day. I need to get ready for a run to storage. Not looking forward to it. Also a sonogram for the kidneys, a physical, a flu shot, an omicron vaccine, dentist, vet. Jam next week, TRD in 3 weeks. November will be busy. I hope I’m up for it.


On the tired side. A bit of a headache tagging my footsteps, not bad but it takes the edge off my focus. Weather is quite nice, blue skies, mild nights, sleeves optional.


Jambalaya is gone. Myka will need to learn not to be spoiled again.

Flash in the pan

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Cocooning with Myka and three ibuprofen caused the fever to go away, and the aftermath has been fading today. 24 hours later, I’m in pretty good shape. There is high blood pressure this evening, and a bit of a headache as a result. But the mucus has faded, and the trachea feels better. So I’m definitely on the mend.


Today was upgrade day across the board. The MacBook Pro got 13.0, the pad got iPadOS 16.1, and the phone got iOS 16.1. It wasn’t as painful as I expected., though it took time to get through everything. A number of the Terminal modifications carried over, something that was at the top of the worry list. I still have some exploring of new features to do.


The trio in the fridge is getting thin. Not to worry, plenty there to take its place. I even have a tub of stew to thaw if it turns cold.


Myka is getting to be a real brat. A scootchie too.

Got the fever

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About three weeks shy of three years since my last fever. This one is low grade, 100.1 is max thus far, and that was baking under blankets and alpaca with Myka between my calves, so it’s technically not a fever according to doctors. Seems to be localized in the mouth and throat. There’s a light mucus part of the time, clear and easy to dislodge. Kidneys are a tad sore.


I suspect it was something that blew in with the front last night. It doesn’t feel contagious. I haven’t had contact with anyone since Friday morning’s store run. It could have been the mail, but I doubt that. It could be COVID, but I’m doubtful, fever is usually higher. I plan on doing a home test, just to be sure. I also plan on eating jambalaya to see if the carbs boost the fever, indicating bacterial infection.


I was planning on a store run tonight. So much for that. Rib eyes go on sale tomorrow, but I don’t have the room for any more than the six I already have in the freezer. I’m hoping tonight’s sales that I want carry over to next week. I won’t know until tomorrow morning. If not, they’ll return down the road.


Need to get the trash on the curb. Everything is gathered, bag is tied, just needs taking out. Waiting for the ibuprofen to kick in.

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Fever (and too many fingers)


Ackley

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Eggs Ackley


I make all this food, jambalaya, rib eye, eggs ackley, and I find myself not hungry. Go figure. *burp*


Waiting for the rain to start tomorrow. Early voting starts tomorrow, I’m thinking Wednesday morning. Should be a short line. Not much else in the meantime. Doing a little better on the edema. Still need the downtime, but not as much, and I can stay vertical longer. I’ll take whatever progress that I can get.


Started entering the NightCafe competition for extra credits. I was down below 320, now I’m at 350. A few renderings here and there, but nothing heavy. First entry got me 5 credits, and 2 credits for voting each day. This is on top of the daily 5 freebie. The only downside is getting good ratings early on and watching it fall as the day progresses.

Weekend

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The jambalaya is in the fridge, next to the rib eye. Eggs ackley is next in line. I made a store run this morning, not much, just stocking up for the weekend. The one extravagance was a large box of soft chocolate chip cookies.


I think my neighbor of two months has vacated the house next door. What I’ve seen points to a gas leak, probably in the furnace on the first cold night of the season. City utilities was out with a gas sniffer The gas got shut off. The SV is gone, no dog noises, lights on all night, a big truck out front. I think I can play music all night long again.


I feel a bit better, the edema not so bad. Still there, but my feet aren’t as puffy, so I can stay vertical longer. It still helps to be horizontal, so not cured yet.


Been rendering food in NightCafe.

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Thanksgiving

Moisture and thermal decline

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The front passed through on Sunday, bringing about 9 hours of light rain, punctuated by a couple of heavy boomers. It washed away the heavy sap from the cherry laurels, allowing walking about the yard without accumulating layers of sticky leaves on the feet. Ahhh.


It also brought cooler temps, currently in the 40s. My house alpaca poncho, wool cap, and denim shirt are the attire of the night. Summer is finally officially gone. The furnace is running, after a shake down. There wasn’t much dust in the ducts, so Myka was not too worried about the smell of smoke.


I prepped a chicken quarter before putting out the trash, ready for jambalaya. The marinated pork tenderloin gets diced next. I also removed the bone on the thawed rib eye, which is ready to broil in the freshly lined pan. Use of the oven is now welcome.


Use of the AI has tapered down considerably. I think I hit the saturation point, and I have a little over 300 credits remaining. The product folder, counting Photoshop edits, is about 1.7 gigs. 540 renders, 350 made public.


Getting enough horizontal time to be functional. Consequently getting ample sleep.

Weakend

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Hobbled by the edema I’m experiencing from the lisinopril. Today, I had to bow out of the Side Effects remastered CD (re)release party. Too long vertical makes it painful to stand up, my swollen feet pressing into my sliders. As cushy as they are, they’re not cushioned enough to keep me on my feet for more than an hour in the vertical. At home, the LZB is on hand for quick relief.


Myka got into the oat grass, the temptation finally getting the best of her. So now they’re on the back porch. I have plenty of seed, potting soil, and pans to sprout numerous more rounds. Myka is heartbroken at their absence, but it’s her own fault.


Waiting for the cold front to arrive, hopefully with rain. The cherry laurel sap is a real problem in places, so the need for rain is dire. Forecast says half inch tonight into the morning. I hope so. The wind is ust now shifting. Midweek lows will be around 40°F. Time to crank up the furnace for a dust burn.


Got ice and Pringles BBQ today, the latter getting hard to find around town. Nothing else was on the shopping list.

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Bubble lazing (needs retouching)

Ides

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First, edema is a factor again. The lisinopril is inflating me, inhibiting the kidneys from removing salts, causing the cells to retain fluid. Being horizontal helps my legs, but the upper body has to absorb the difference in the process, so rest is not all that restful. But overall, the change of meds is helpful.


AI is scattered, no single theme, just stray ideas.

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Another Mucha styled rendering


Did a thaw in preparation for the coming cold front. There is a rib eye in the fridge, along with pork tenderloin and chicken for jambalaya. I thought I was thawing brisket, but it turned out to be spare ribs. I’m not disappointed, the tacos are quite tasty and there is more brisket for the future.


I washed the truck clean of cherry laurel sap. I can’t tell if I’ll need to do it again. It’s still difficult not to track in leaves in layers stuck to the soles, but at least the truck isn’t a yuck ball with dead leaves stuck all over it. I’m hoping for enough rain to wash it all away.

Mucha

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Art Nouveau maiden…

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Maiden – a la Alphonse Mucha

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Myka’s salad is 5 inches tall in less than a week, thanks to fresh seed and MiracleGro.

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Myka’s oat grass.

Famous artists

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At NightCafe, I have been on a famous artist jag. The AI is remarkably good at copying the style of past masters in painting and photography. I have tested the styles of photographers Ansel Adams, Minor White, Dorthea Lange, Edward Weston, and Diane Arbus, plus the styles of painters Édouard Manet, Paul Cézanne, Marc Chagall, George Condo, Edgar Degas, Henri Rousseau, Pablo Picasso, Leonardo da Vinci, Francisco de Goya, Andy Warhol, Michelangelo, Frank Frazetta, Max Ernst, Paul Pascal, Rembrandt, Hieronymus Bosch, Salvador Dali, Claude Monet, Norman Rockwell, Vincent van Gogh, H R Giger, Jackson Pollock, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. (And yes, I am familiar with the work of all of them.) I still have many names to add to the list, though my momentum seems to be fading with success. However, there comes a point where exploration becomes saturated.

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Wildflowers – a la Claude Monet
Divisive – a la Pablo Picasso
Duke in a brown robe – a la Rembrandt
At one with the universe – a la Jackson Pollock
Jerome – a la Michelangelo
Grand Tetons and the Snake River – a la Ansel Adams

Baby backs

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Two racks of baby back ribs.


Baby back ribs were on sale, so I grabbed a couple of racks for freezer stock. 196° – 205°F internal. Two ribs per freezer bag. Despite being yummy, none of the bags were kept in the fridge. It’s not like they’re going anywhere. There’s just too much in the fridge that needs eating, and ribs on sale are hard to resist.


Started the lisinopril/clonidine/metoprolol agenda today. The valsartan side effects are starting to fade. BP was 115/67 @57bpm. Seems to be working, an occasional dry mouth from the clonidine seems to be the biggest issue thus far.


Well stocked now. No need for a store run at the moment. Chores pretty much behind me.


The first sprouts of oat grass are starting to poke through the potting soil. Myka will be pleased. There are few straggler resprouts of the crabgrass, albeit tiny leaves. They might suffice for a transition.

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Faeries discussing the health of flowers.

Drive

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Ordered an 8T external USB hard drive, now that payday is here. The price of giving up DVDs as backups.


I throttled back up again. It wasn’t a long sabbatical, as I decided to go all in this week. Another 18 hours should do it. It’s just a heightened state over the long haul. The AI has trailed off, it takes a free roaming state of consciousness to devise entertaining prompts. Plugging away kind of blunts any fine edge.


Running out of stew and turkey, but that’s a good thing (2 liters of stew in the freezer not withstanding).


With the weather turning more encouraging, I may finally make the trip to the storage shed. I need to wrestle a few things in the office first.


Weather is nice. AC off, doors shut to moderate the interior temp.

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Latina

Throttle down

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Easing off the gas pedal and letting things slow down. Only a few stray thoughts becoming prompts. The digital focus has dissipated and given way to what will surely become laziness. There’s stew (2 quarts in the freezer, a little over 2 quarts in the fridge) and cocktail shrimp (had my first stab at it this evening) and a bunch more in the fridge. Good recipe for a happy laziness. Throw in BBC whodunits and the lazy day is won.


Hurricane Ian hit Florida at Fort Myers, a nasty one, CAT4, 953 mb lowest recorded pressure, 12+ ft storm surge. It’s a mess state wide.


Still dry here. We’re currently listed as moderate drought in the last publication, but I expect it to worsen. The water level at Lake Somerville keeps dropping.


20 hours to payday.

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