The lost art of packing

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on The lost art of packing

I haven’t packed for a road trip in over six months, namely Spring Fling. Myka is not going to be happy. Granted, packing for a music school takes less than an hour at a relaxed pace, less than 30 minutes with effort. Still, she will immediately know what I’m doing and will not be happy about it.

I have done the other tests and calculations. The distribution box drain is showing at 18 Ω. At 12 volts, that equates to 0.66A, or about 8W. That means it would take at least four days to drain the battery (eight days for a 100% drain of the 130A reserve). The alternator is 75A, or 900W. I am confident that the alternator will not be diminished by that much extra draw, and while running, the battery, engine, et al, should not be impaired. I will pull the negative terminal from the battery when parking, as I already have been doing. As long as something drastic doesn’t happen, I am good to go.

Looking forward to the visit. I haven’t played music with anyone in six months. It’s about time…

I have to say I am not alone in elation that summer is over. The 80+°F dew points took their toll all around. Everyone I’ve encountered is celebrating.

Two and a half hours left of hanging close to the vest at my leisure.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Swap

Part 1 – the alternator is off. Taking a break before heading over to the parts store for a warranty swap.

Part 2 – the alternator was exchanged, no cost, no problem. The rectifier was bad. The lifetime warranty transfers over.

Part 3 – installed!!!!!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOO!!!

I am so glad to get everything to finally come together. I must say, I’m smiling a big one. All other issues are forgotten, at least for now. Even the mosquito bites.

Got a slightly used spare battery as a backup for the trip to Bryan. I hope I don’t have to use it. But it’s there if I need it.

Ping pong

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Ping pong

Texas has two seasons, summer and ping pong. I have made note of this in this blog eight times before. We are seeing the arctic make a lob shot over Texas, bringing a dash of swift thunderstorms and modest rain. But temps are mild, low 80s instead of 90s. I have yet to re-don the denim shirt or light up the furnace. Windows were shut in the upper 70s, and they’re now in the upper 60s outside, heading for the low 50s. The sleeves will return before sunrise.

Made a burger tonight, bacon and gouda to adorn it. The package of ground chuck in the freezer was 1 lb, shy of the standard for sketti sauce. And I had considered a run to Whataburger, so it was a logical progression. I have enough for a second bacon gouda burger. And I may get avocado for this one. I also have a section of pork tenderloin thawed. That will probably join the wedge of Jarlsberg in the fridge.

Planning a quick late night store run. Four items on the list, under $15. In and out. I’ll get to make a social debut in the new denim, caught live on surveillance cameras.

Hoping to do the alternator swap tomorrow. It will be a good day for it, specifically the afternoon. I need to get it done. I’m hoping it will happen, I am feeling better, the weather is right.

I need to get to Bryan to cash a check while it’s still valid. I want to play some music with others too. Don’t get me wrong, I am comfortable here. But one can’t sit in one place forever. Even with online purchasing.

If I go to Bryan Wednesday, I may wait to restring the Egee. Better a little flat than excess harmonics and stretching out of tune every song. (I knew I’d find an excuse.)

Denim sleeves

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Denim sleeves

Been wearing one of the new denim shirts for 18 hours now, and I am pleased. They are the right size, everything fits, no constriction, sleeves are proper length, the snaps are pretty easy. I will definitely order two more.

I am reluctant to thaw anything from the freezer. Killing off the last of the brie now. The chicken stock rice is the last item surviving in the fridge. I still have an urge for popcorn shrimp. Spaghetti in the near future.

I missed getting garbage out to the curb. I don’t do that often, and this time was because I slept through the usual time I take it to the curb. I also slept through the time of day to swap out the alternator. *sigh*

60s outside, windows closed, no central heat tonight. No AC either.

Going into the weekend. I could hear music from the downtown clubs when the windows were open. No football music this weekend.

Still playing music myself, though still on old strings. I don’t seem to be very inspired lately. The long summer didn’t help me shift gears. I need to rev up, but the body is not cooperating. I don’t feel bad, just slow. Edema isn’t helping.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Shoits

The denim shirts arrived. A little wide in the shoulder, but the sleeves are perfect. They are currently in the washer, as they are on the stiff side and need breaking in. But I’m happy with them. I will get a couple more, probably in November.

AC is off again. Windows currently open, 73°F at the peak of afternoon. Dew point, 40°F, rh 30%.

Made the chicken stock rice last night, came out about 2.5 quarts. Over a quarter of chicken in it. It will last a while. Half way through the brie and pate. Starting to think of a thaw, spaghetti is in the top choice list. Not particularly hungry.

Hoping to get to swapping out the alternator tomorrow.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Shippin’

My shirts, two and a half days after ordering, finally got their origin scan in Nashville. They are due Thursday.

Too much in the fridge to eat popcorn shrimp. Sausage gravy, fettuccine alfredo, and half a rotisserie bird. Plus a round of brie needs to be eaten soon with pate. It will be a while before the next thaw. Turtle cheesecake and cheese danish, though waning, are not helping. Produce neither. Trying to balance a desire not to gorge and expiration dates.

It got up to 93°F at 4 pm, the high was forecast as 84°F, so I left the windows open and napped. It was warm when I woke. But I never bothered to turn the AC on, as the dew point was in the 60s. I may turn it on, as the dew point has hit 77°F at 77°F.

The bird is now only a quarter, part of the second breast went to bbq tacos, the rest to bolster the fettuccine, which didn’t really need more, but better there than in two more tacos. Life is tough.

And the AC is on for the next 24 hours, at least, to keep things dry in the office.

Denim, cool weather, and fettuccine alfredo

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Denim, cool weather, and fettuccine alfredo

The second front came through. Been in the 50s and a little of the 60s for 42 hours. The AC is off. The thermostat is operating the furnace smoothly.

I ordered two of the denim shirts, delivered to the door. It’s in budget. Due in a week. If they work out, I’ll get two more in November. The alpaca sweater is treating me well.

Haven’t restrung the Egee yet. I’ll get around to it.

Myka is quickly getting back into cold weather habits, like making a blanket hammock between my calves, taking residence in the aerie, and scootching all over. She is a happy cat.

Got a new aerator for the kitchen faucet. I was filling Myka’s bowl, she sitting in the other side of the sink, eagerly supervising. The aerator cartridge split along the base circumference, and KAWHOOOSH! Myka was airborne before the first heartbeat. Fortunately, no one got wet. I went to Lowes this morning and got a swivel stream/spray nozzle. I can now rinse the far corners of the sink without the aid of a spoon. I wish I had a 5 hole sink. Also gave the bathroom sink a fresh aerator cartridge.

Alternator swap on the horizon.

Rib eye/provolone taco today ended the steak. Made a chicken fettuccine alfredo using one of the breasts of the rotisserie bird I got on whim. Still have some sausage gravy to finish off. Most of the milk got used, less than a cup left. The freezer is topped off, a remarkable inventory.

I’ve been doing pretty well, all told. I’m not scootching like Myka, but the season is giving me inspiration. Things are getting done.

Ping pong

Posted in Other Stuff, Photo | Comments Off on Ping pong

The heat will run away tonight, but for now, the AC is running in 92°F weather. However, I’m not so sure that the office window will be opened, considering that rain and high winds may accompany the drop in temp. Tomorrow, the temp just keeps dropping.

The denim shirt I got has 33″ sleeves, which means good for a roll up sleeve, or give it to someone else. Myka destroyed the cardboard wrapper, so no sense in returning it. I have found the shirt I want at Home Depot, no less, $44. One or two a month, depending on the month. Four should suffice. 10 oz, tall size, 38″ sleeves, double flap pockets.

The Defense Lawyer Credo
“If the facts are against you, argue the law.
If the law is against you, argue the facts.
If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table and yell like hell.”
Carl Sandberg

I am planning on restringing the Egee today, though not listing that in ink. It will be the first time. Alas, no pegs.

Rebounding heat

Posted in Other Stuff, Photo | Comments Off on Rebounding heat

The rebound from the cool front is beginning to creep back into the scene, with highs about 90°F. It’s not a simply return, but the low pressure bulge created in front of a serious cold front scheduled to arrive Friday morning. The low Saturday morning is forecast to be around 50°F. But the office window stays open tonight.

The denim shirt was not what I wanted. I’m convinced that any $20 denim shirt is going to be a lightweight, on the stiff side, even though it’s all cotton. I have a feeling that I’ll be looking in the $40 range to find what I want. I feel like I may need to do some window shopping in BCS to find the right shirt, then order online for the best price.

Got a ground meat chopper today, a five bladed nylon utensil for separating ground meat into loose chunks (chili, sloppy joes, traditional tacos, sausage gravy, etc.), as well as mixing bowl contents (stuffing, boiled eggs, etc.) I expect to use it tonight making gravy.

Did a dust burn on the furnace, checking out the new thermostat. Works quite well, only a single ignition sequence, instead of the four or five the old one was performing to get running. The cool down takes quite a while after the flame goes out, before the fan shuts off though. Also got new filters. So it’s set for winter now. Got some ducting for the bathroom.

Broke down and got rib eyes while they were on sale. So instead of two in the freezer, I have five, plus a majority of another in the fridge. I wasn’t impressed until I saw the four pack buried at the bottom of the far right row. Being tall with long arms is sometimes an advantage. Nothing new goes in the freezer for a week or two.

AC shutdown

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on AC shutdown

The AC is off, the office door is open, the desk window is open. Myka is thrilled.

Right now is the calm before the front, when things get still in the quiet line between the warm and cool bulges in the atmosphere. Just past midnight. The wind is scheduled to kick up from the north about 2:30. So there is a hush of a small town on a Sunday night as contiguous summer breaths its last sigh. The random vehicle says goodbye to warm Texas summer nights.

It is a definite difference, the constant drone of the AC gone. It’s replaced by the buzz of a few insects, a train passing through town, and the natural muted ringing of the ears. It is a relief.

It is a bittersweet farewell. Not looking forward to the freezing cold, but I do appreciate the departure of the heat. I can still tolerate the heat, as long as I’m not retaining it. Getting older has its costs.

But five months and change is enough summer for any given year. It’s time to bid summer adieux.

Last day of summer

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Last day of summer

In 26 hours, the wind is forecast to turn around from the north, with a 40% chance of rain. By sunrise, the wind will be 15 to 20 mph, and summer will be riding it south. It will attempt a warm rebound on Wednesday, but a more serious front at the start of Friday will insure its departure as the lows head into the lower 50s. Rain doesn’t look to be more than 40% at any time. Next week looks like consistent 80s/60s with no sunny skies.

Took a long soak in the tub. It might be the last cool water bath of the year, where the tub is comfortable for leaning back. The tub has considerable thermal mass, and it gets cold in the winter and doesn’t like to warm up above the waterline, even when it’s full of hot water. Abutting two exterior walls doesn’t help matters.

Working on a creamy rice with chicken and pork tenderloin. Sausage gravy will follow to target the bag of gold potatoes. Split pea soup is on the agenda to use the ham bone in the freezer, once I use up the milk (several options there). Spaghetti too. I’m sure a steak or two will be in the mix, now that I’ll be able to broil comfortably. May even bbq.

Hoping to get some recording done when the AC gets turned off. I plan on restringing the Egee, maybe today. I have all the gear for laying down tracks now. All I need is relative quiet.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Thermo

Just got the new thermostat installed for central heat. Hardest thing was the mounting screws, which were meant for plastic anchors, through an old and very hard plywood panel. The fan tests out on manual, but it’s a little warm to test the heat, and not while the AC is running. I want the house to be fully open for the smoke out first run of the season. I have confidence in the heat function. Everything else tests out. Glad to see that installed before it cools off.

Four more days of summer. Thinking about denim shirts. I found a good style for $20 each. I might try a couple, and if they work, maybe a couple more.

I need to cook, but I just don’t have the energy tonight after the installation. Plenty to eat on hand without cooking, but I need to use ingredients before they go south on me. Maybe tomorrow.

Not much else to talk about. Doing a lot of waiting for cooler temps.

October fessed

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on October fessed

It looks like one more week of summer weather, and then it will drop 10°F. And then I can get the alternator swapped out without getting dripping wet and short of soupy breath. Then I can get out of town. I’ll have been a recluse for six months. That’s long enough.

Pay day today. Recovered from the truck insurance bill nicely. Staying home is thrifty. Kitchen is fully stocked. Due a thaw today.

Feeling pretty good. Meds are agreeing with me for the most part. Still a little limited because of my back. But I’m in good condition over all.

Spending too much time digging through the news.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Oven
Bacon wrapped tenderloin

The rest of the bacon

It was a warm night in the kitchen, but I couldn’t wait any longer for the weather to cool. But it was worth braving the heat. Myka approved, 8 claws up. Jerry approved too.

Well, end of September and still no sign of autumn. Dew point still up there. Gulf water needs to cool off a bit more.

Playing music daily, getting my stamina back.

Late night store run. Brie, bbq chicken strips, fajita chicken, popcorn shrimp, etc. Wasn’t able to try any of it yet. Cat litter. Well stocked, bills paid, waiting for autumn.

Nordal Astramia

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Nordal Astramia

Think of two words that seem to mean something together but aren’t in spell check.

Word of the day: unglued

Yesterday’s word of the day: egregious

Summer is still here.

Ambition is still lacking.

I need to broil the tenderloin tonight. I was going to do it last night, but it was lights out.

The last days of 12.4.1

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on The last days of 12.4.1

iPadOS is due to be released in two hours. Looks interesting, but I’m waiting for feedback and the servers to cool down a bit. Since I don’t have a pro, I can wait like only a retired person can.

Dew point at 78°F. No, we are not having an early fall. Imelda cooled off the Gulf a little, but not enough. October will be a warm one.

Haven’t been into cooking the last couple of days, the prime directive being labor intenselessness.

Well, I went ahead and installed iPadOS on the new iPad. It was quicker than I expected, well under an hour to download and install. There is a learning curve for multitasking and other items, though not a huge one. But I have questions for which I will be digging up answers to satisfy.

Swerve to the right

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Swerve to the right
Imelda summary rainfall, NWS Houston

Imelda didn’t come up the Brazos River as predicted, it jumped I-45 and went up the Trinity instead. Basically Cleveland to Beaumont was where the torrent dropped over 25 inches, some places as much as 40 inches. Here, we got less than 3/4 inch for the week, most of that today.

A new thaw, having finally emptied out the fridge of recipes. Pork loin, beef tenderloin, and fajita chicken are the stock. Today is a light day, eating a peanut butter and honey sandwich.

The high has been around 90°F and is forecast to go up to 93°F, not yet an end to summer, but at least an end to August. The western Gulf was cooled, but other areas to the east are still too hot for comfort.

I didn’t do much this week, mostly planning to hunker down, then not needing to hunker down, but doing so anyway. Made a couple of store runs, less than $40 total for both. Can’t think of anything I need now.

Been watching movies, playing games, reading news, the usual time eaters. Over all, getting enough sleep, feeling pretty good. I’m just ready for summer to go away.

Black eyed peas and cornbread

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Black eyed peas and cornbread

Used part of the cajun marinated country style pork rib to spice up some black eyed peas, a good match. Topped that with a couple of chunks of hot buttered cornbread. Still plenty of jambalaya left, a good alternative combo. Avocado needs using in the next day or two, spuds no doubt.

Watching the cloud mass gathering at the shore, expecting the possibility of rain for the next four days. Fortunately, not much wind with it. We could use it. And the cloud cover will drop the temps. And it’s dropping the temperature of the Gulf. I’m all for that.

Stocked up yesterday evening at the stores, everything is there for all the usual options, new and old. Produce, breads, cakes, chips, pieces and Rolos, etc. Everything on the list plus a couple of specials I wasn’t anticipating. So I won’t need to make another run this week. Let it rain.

I’m still playing music.

Jambalaya sandwiches

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Jambalaya sandwiches

Still working on the shrimp/chicken/pork jambalaya, eating a sandwich of it first, before finishing off the rest of the bowl.

Still being a homebody. Haven’t felt the urge to get out of the house. Haven’t needed anything from the store. I may make a store run tonight after it cools down. Tonight is a good night for avoiding the crowds. Not that I immediately need the items on the list, but it would round out standard stock to proper levels. I could use a little produce.

Part of my homebound ways have to do with the county fair, which is getting underway. It peaks this coming Wednesday and Thursday. But traffic has been pretty fierce already, and it will only get worse. Thursday is senior’s day, $3 day ticket. I don’t plan on fighting for a parking spot on the busiest day.

I haven’t driven anywhere in a week. It’s not depression. I’m having too much fun. Still playing music, getting my arms in shape. The food has been good. Movies, chats, the usual. I’m just a little tired of summer. Not looking forward to winter, but I’ve filled my quota of August.

Not much else above trivia level to talk about.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Jambalaya

Just finished prep on the chicken and country style pork rib (cajun marinade) for the jambalaya, two cups each. Shrimp is thawing now.

Weather is giving a little, mid-90s instead of upper-90s, and the dew point isn’t getting over 75°F and is more often than not in the 60s. Not quite the weather yet for hard labor, but better than what we had for the majority of July and August. Dew points in the 80s are still hanging around the coast, but the lack of rain is drying it out over a fairly short distance inland.

Not very peppy today. But after a fairly active week, I’m not bothered by the relaxation. I could stand a little more sleep. But I am playing music more, getting back in shape for the fall festivities.

Don’t have to go in and see the primary physician for six months (February) unless something comes up. That’s the same time frame as the next ophthalmologist visit.

A quiet spell, waiting for the heat to depart Texas.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Flop

All the chores are done. Store run and pharmacy, nothing on the shopping list, all scripts renewed. Ice bin is full, so is the freezer. Laundry drying. Kitchen is still clean. I’m off the clock.

I’m expecting to make sausage gravy tonight. Need to start on the bag of spuds. A couple of servings of risotto left, along with brisket and baby back ribs. Got another box of mini-micro deep dish supreme pizzas, 3 of the first 4 are gone. The price is right, easy to fix, and they taste good. The nutrition data even looks good.

Rain was in the area this morning, but not close enough to count as a near miss. It fell apart on the approach. Getting dry, hints of brown starting to lace the landscape.

I have been gearing up for the break in the weather, if it would just get here.

I have the rest of the day off.

It rained! Not a flood, but dark things have a reflection. We needed it.


Posted in 2D, Other Stuff, Photo | Comments Off on Moon

A tough time for the Indian space program, their lunar lander failing communications 40 meters from the surface. For them, I post this 20 year old Photoshopped image.

Moongoose © Jerry Walsh 1975/1999

Got the shirts this morning on a 5 am store run. I went for the floor cleaner for mopping the kitchen and got the shirts on the same run. Also grabbed ziplocks and a couple of munchies, including personal microwave pizzas. Pharmacy will keep for when I feel like making a daylight run. I have until Friday before I’m skipping a dose.

Laundry (new shirts), kitchen floor, and cheese risotto are today’s chores. Reverse chronological order, I think. I got the fridge and microwave cleaned and the kitchen floor swept before trash went out yesterday. So the mopping is the last item in the kitchen onslaught.

The forecast gave up on running the heat out of Texas mid-month. The heat could be here all September. Bleech!

Getting used to the new truck key habit. It’s not reflexive yet, but I haven’t tried to put it in the wrong way yet.

Muk Luks are in town and scheduled for delivery this morning.


Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Counter

Getting close to done on the kitchen (restaurant grade) cleaning. All the counters are done, only thing above the floor that needs cleaning is the microwave interior, and it’s a mild chore. Mostly rice or crumbs that can be brushed out, and only a few. The mop down will be easy, since I’m using splatter guards and a bacon rack that mesh perfectly around a large paper plate. Clean machine.

The kitchen floor will get done tonight. Trash to the curb shortly, then I’ll be done for the day. Triple digits through the weekend. At least the dew point is staying below 72°F, and mostly in the 60s. Drying time has been excellent.

Trying to get the house tidied up before it gets closed up for winter. So much easier to do than when the dew point is in the 80s.

The scripts weren’t done for me by the stand-in doctor, so I had to order online, with two requiring an okay. And the pick-up order kiosk had crashed with no repairman in sight. Maybe around dark, maybe tomorrow late morning. No big hurry for either. Made the grocery run this morning as the dawn was breaking. Except for the failed run yesterday, none of which is required until next week, I’m fully stocked for the weekend.

Waiting for a new pair of Muk Luks to appear on the front porch in the next few days.

Time to get the trash to the curb and kick back.

Keyed up

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Keyed up

Broke off the ignition key for the truck while on a store run. Fortunately, I had a spare in my wallet so that I could lock the door. Fortunately the truck started with a stub. However, that is the last one, and I plan on a visit to the locksmith for a couple of copies. The locksmith is only open in the afternoons during the heat of the day. I was lucky to have narrow nose hemostats (digital chip heat sink), with which I gripped the stub and removed it on first try.

Scrubbing down the kitchen while it’s still warm weather and relatively dry. Starting with the counters, then to the floors. One section at a time. Looks like we have at least two more weeks before we see a cool down. At or near triple digits until mid-month.

Added chicken quarters to the freezer after a morning roast. Now my thaw selection is better balanced. One of the quarters was skinned, deboned, and diced, now sitting in the fridge in a lidded glass bowl, ready for chicken/broccoli fettuccine alfredo.

Hoping to get to the alternator soon. I need to get my sleep schedule set to where I have the energy in the morning before it warms up. Today, I slept through it. Being fairly busy in the house this week. The drier weather is an incentive to get things done. So much nicer when the dew point is in the 60s than when it’s in the 80s. I thank TS Fernand in the Gulf for helping dry things out a bit. Don’t want a repeat of Harvey.

Got the keys, one for the house, two for the truck. The truck key was cut one sided to avoid the pencil neck weak spot where it broke both times. The locksmith was a nice guy and charged me a very reasonable price, $7 for three keys. Blanks usually cost more than that in other places.

Bye bye August

Posted in Other Stuff | Comments Off on Bye bye August

I am once again glad to see August depart. Not in a hurry for winter, but I’ve had enough dew points n the 80s for one year. I ordered a new pair of Muk Luks online for the coming season. I figured it was a good way to celebrate, and I wanted to get them during offseason while they’re still in stock.

Made pork fried rice with first slices of the pork loin. It’s almost gone. I have to say that I missed having pork loin in the freezer. It is so versatile and yummy. I’m not shy on pork now, but the loin fits a very large niche in true fashion.

The new truck battery has new terminals, and the traces of acid are gone. Nice not to smell it on my fingers. No alternator yet, the weather still has it in for me.

Truck insurance has been paid, and I’ve been paid. With the rest of the bills piled on, I’m breaking water, but not by much. If I’m thrifty in September, I’ll be back on budget by October first.

Myka escaped the house this morning, right before sunrise, right before the store run. Needless to say, privileges will not be honored for 24 hours, and Advantage Multi will be applied. I hope it was worth me flagging down the truck to not run her over. Piece of *!#%$@^!!!