Monday, July 31, 2023

Last Day of July

 We are about halfway through the Summer Weather here in lovely and exotic Olive Branch, Mississippi.  The Summers are brutally hot.  June is Hell's porch.  July is Satan's crotch.  August makes you long for June.  May starts out okay but gets hot mid-month.  September is the mirror opposite.  

My job hunt is showing no signs of improvement.  I did have an interview with a law firm that seemed positive and I was advancing to the next round.  Unfortunately, they would want me in Chicago immediately, no remote until we can move there on our schedule.

And that is part of the problem.  Even when remote work was more prevalent, law firms -- where the bulk of my potential employers are -- require you to live in a state where they have an office for tax compliance reasons.  

And now the Return To Office (TRO) is being pushed so it makes it even more unlikely I will find anything again.

July was also a bad month for steps.  Between the heat down here, and spending most of our time at the beach (where my phone would be in my backpack) I did not hit my target 99% of the time.

States I have visited in the USA

 Gonna put this here for a gimmick.  This represents, to the best of my memory, the state I have visited in the United States of America.  This is including states I may have had a short layover via airplane or just drove through on the way to somewhere else.  

This map probably isn't entirely correct.  I find it hard to believe I haven't somehow wound up driving through Oklahoma or New Mexico, but I cannot remember a specific instance where I would have. 

In the mid 90s, when I went to Yellowstone, my friend drove from New York to Chicago to pick me up.  We then drove through Wisconsin, Minnesota to get to South Dakota to visit other friends.  Did we technically touch North Dakota on the way?  No idea.  

BTW: The Blogger dot com HTML editor will let me paste the code for this map but won't let me edit it.  It's very annoying how limited Blogger has become but since it's free, I cannot really complain.

Create Your Own Visited States Map

Friday, July 28, 2023

A step in the right direction

First, a story.  When we were getting married NG and I did the wedding protocol.  We sent out Save-the-dates and subsequently, wedding invites.  A particular person was dodgy on providing their address the first time I asked and I should have taken that as a hint.

Fast forward, on our wedding invite RSVP they wrote that not only couldn't they attend, they couldn't attend because they had a block party they had to be at.  As someone who has been accused of being tactless, not reading the room, social manners lite, etc, I fail to understand why people overshare shit like this.  What is the thought process?  why share that the most important day of my life gets trumped by a bouncy house and drunk neighbors!  And the kicker?  this asshat went through a wedding themself so they should know how precious each limited seat is.

Now to the present.  Another friend is getting married soon and we are invited to the wedding.  It's impractical to attend, especially since we have had plans to be in Chicago two weeks prior.  But there is also the "this friend has been on radio silence" for a bit factor.

Dark Icarus would look at it like, oh you reach out when you need something from me but have ignored my texts and messages.  But trying to be a better person Icarus is thinking that the right thing to do here is not hold a seat hostage until the last minute.   

So I declined the invite well in advance of the RSVP date.  

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

We are back from a week in Chicago

 We are back from a week in Chicago.  We visited the MSI but spent most of our time at Montrose Beach.  It took a little bit of practice but once we got our groove, we figured out that Montrose had the best free parking and was easier to get to.  

Nightingale and I had dinner at Las Tapas, a place that is around the corner from our PP HOUSE.  I miss living there and wish I COULD get us back there.  alas, without employment, it is a pipe dream.  If my mom would sell her crapshack, we could buy this house.  but she won't.

did I get to do all the Chicago things I wanted to do?  no.  but what are the Chicago things anyway? 

Saturday, July 15, 2023

headed to Chicago

 We are headed to Chicago for a week via Mt Vernon.  We stay at the Drury Inn to split the drive into two manageable 4-hour legs.

Katniss has graciously offered her house for us to stay in since she and the family are going out of town for a vacation with some extended family.

I didn't tell a lot of people we will be in town but I did tell a few.  It's hard to see everyone and it's just easier to do our own thing with an occasional lunch or dinner with another adult.

financially, we really shouldn't be doing this trip.  We are doing it so my mom can see her grandkids again, especially since I'm not sure we will make our annual Thanksgiving Day visit.  But it will be good for the kids and for me.  

If my mom could be a functional adult, we would have a better solution.  She could sell her crapshack in Humboldt Park and buy a nicer home.  Then we'd have a place to stay and could visit more often.  But she is afraid of change and doesn't care that I will have to spend tons of money when she finally dies and I have to deal with her hoarder issues.

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Down the Zombie Rabbit Hole

On the Svengoolie Fans Group on Facebook a user asked

I answered with my theory is Zombies refer to the reanimated dead via VooDoo.


This is a throwback to something I wrote here a decade ago.  Which wasn't entirely correct as it turns out.

 and look at the rabbit hole I went down for this question:

Types Of Zombies
Biological zombies. Parasites modify the host creature's behavior. ...
Supernatural zombies. These are zombies that are created in a supernatural way. ...
Chemical zombies. Strange chemicals are discovered and are meant to bring back the dead to life. ...
Technological zombies. ...
Constructed zombie. ...
Magic zombie.

Let's not forget that Vampires are simply intelligent, self-aware, zombies. 🙂

Thursday, July 6, 2023

This house has some serious electrical issues

 The other day I noticed the deck lights didn't turn on automatically.  We only have an outlet on one side of the deck, from which we run two power strips.  We have the deck lights and a few other things connected to these.

After some light investigation, I determined that the outlet wasn't providing any power.  Unfortunately, troubleshooting requires turning the junction boxes on and off and that isn't something I can do when Nightingale is working.  Last night I finally got a chance and while that didn't solve the problem, it did point me in the right direction.  We have a light switch in the kids' room that always throws a breaker on the circuit board.  I flipped it on, then reset the breaker, and then the deck lights worked again.

BUT...last night one of our Air Conditioning units stopped working.  The air was coming out but it wasn't cold.  After a bit of troubleshooting, I determined it was the same problem as last year.  In fact, it has been 11 months since a repairman charged me $240 to fix it.  

  • $70 for a capacitor (they average $20)
  • $50 for freon (this was just a precaution)
  • $120 for labor, about half an hour of work IIRC.

I wanted to avoid that this time so I will replace the capacitor myself.  Amazon had one and I could have had it here tomorrow between 4 am and 8 am but I needed to find one more item for $1.10.  I could have selected literally anything, even two capacitors ($23.90 ea), and returned it.  But I wanted to find something we could use.  It indicated that I had until 5 pm to place the order so I put it down to go deal with feeding my kids lunch.

at 2:30 I picked this up again and now no option for tomorrow is available.  the earliest will be sometime Saturday and it might bleed over into Sunday.  I don't know if it is because Amazon just baits and switches the rapid delivery or because we live in such a shithole state that they only deliver here when it is convenient for them.

Update from the future:  While getting an estimate for a water tank replacement, the person was able to troubleshoot my AC and figured it was just the circuit breaker.  Since I had already tried that, I'm gonna say that the problem was the Capacitor and the breaker.