July 20, 2016

Heck of a good question!


When I was a kid, I thought there would be some point where a gong would sound, and a switch would throw, and suddenly I'd be an adult and I'd know it.

I'm 62 and I'm still waiting. Somehow nothing like that ever happened. I've come to the conclusion that this old saw was actually the truth:

The only difference,
between men and boys
is the size of their lies
and the price of their toys.

The only real change, and I suppose it was a good one, was when I left home to go to college. After that I could decide to do things without having to ask permission from my mother. (My dad died a week before I entered college.)

All my life, deep down I had this irrational fear that someone was going to walk up to me someday and say, Nope, nope, it was all a mistake. We've decided you don't get to be an adult after all. You have to get back in the cage again and let other people run your life.

And now I'm facing that as a real possibility. I may have to enter a nursing home, and the prospect fills me with abject terror. I got two and a half weeks of that in November 2012 after my stroke when I was in the rehab hospital, and after one week I was ready to go home, at least mentally. (I sure wasn't physically, though.)

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June 14, 2016

Mama Goose out for a walk


There have been a couple of families of goosies around, though they haven't shown up very often. This is what they looked like on June 3.


And this is what the smaller family looked like today. They're starting to fledge already, and the young 'uns have put on a lot of weight.

What I find a bit disturbing is that I haven't seen any ducklings. Usually there are two or three duck hens with baby duckies hanging around here but not this year. I would think the geese chased them away except that today is the first time since June 3 that the geese have been around.

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Dreams of our daughters

Last night I dreamed that Team Anko appeared in the middle of... something... I had been dreaming about, and it turned out they were phantoms. Eventually Maho showed up in her Tiger, too.

I think I've been watching too much anime...

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June 07, 2016

Dammit, Fedex!

So I ordered a couple more of those 512G flash drives, and they were supposed to be delivered today. The Fedex tracking site says my package was left at my door at 12:20, but it's not there, 2 hour later.

Probably the driver left it at the wrong building, and if so and if I'm lucky and my neighbor is honest, then when they come home they'll find it and bring it to me. I'd go out and search the complex for it except that I can't walk anymore. I'm tempted to start complaining but I really should wait until tomorrow.

Screw it; I'm going to take a nap.

UPDATE: It's after 8, and I can't figure out how to reach a real person at Fedex in a timely manner, so I got into the NewEgg customer service page. After following lots of links and then filling out a form, I was able to get into a chat session with a customer service rep named "Duncan D." (ostensibly; wouldn't surprise me if that isn't really his name) and he did good.

He's going to do the "package tracing" thing with Fedex and if they can't satisfy him, he'll issue me a refund. Considering it was about $500, that's a good thing. (If it had been $30, I would have just let it go.)

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June 06, 2016

Lights out

Power failures are a pain in the butt. We had one this morning, about an hour ago. It only lasted about a minute, but all my computers went down, and I had to reset all my clocks.

We take reliable power for granted, and PGE (Portland General Electric) does a really good job overall. So it's really a surprise when it really does happen, kind of like being blindsided by a sucker punch.

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June 01, 2016



I've always eaten my grilled cheese sandwiches with ketchup. Been doing that since I was a kid. Of course, what I was eating in those days wasn't technically "grilled cheese" because it was Velveeta, which legally speaking isn't cheese.

The FDA has a legal definition of "cheese" and Velveeta doesn't qualify. If you look at the package Kraft doesn't claim that it's cheese. They used to call it "Pasteurized Process Cheese food", and then "Pasteurized Process Cheese Spread", and the FDA issued a warning letter, so now it's called "Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product", which apparently the FDA doesn't mind. Bureaucrats will be the death of us all.

Now my Grilled Cheese Sandwich is really cheese, however. My cheese is Tillamook Sharp Cheddar. I've tried Vermont cheddar and I've tried Wisconsin cheddar, and to me they just don't measure up. Tillamook is an area on the Oregon coast which is nearly perfect for raising dairy cattle, and the Tillamook County Creamery Association is a farm cooperative that all the dairy farmers belong to that processes their milk and sells it. They do all the things you expect from a dairy (milk, cream, butter, ice cream) but cheese is their main product.

Tillamook sharp cheddar makes good sandwiches. And it's good for everything else that cheese is good for. (I add it to my lasagna.) I grate a pound at a time and keep it in a plastic box in my fridge.

As to the ketchup, a lot of people tell me that's "really weird", but I like it, so to heck with what other people think. (When did I ever care about that?) One of the big problems for me about living in Massachusetts was that I couldn't get Tillamook cheese there. One of the reliefs when I moved to San Diego was that I could get it there. And of course, back here in Beaverton it's readily available.

If you like that sort of thing (I don't) the fields there are also a good place to find Psilocybin mushrooms, or so I've been told.

UPDATE: Around these parts, Tillamook is also famous because of the "Tillamook Burn", one of the largest forest fires in Oregon history. In 1933 350,000 acres went up in smoke. My mom was a kid in Salem at the time, and she said the smoke made it look like night-time.

Starting in the 1950's, there was a massive effort at reforestation, and that finished in the 1970's because they had reforested it all. The area is now known as the "Tillamook State Forest" and they've started logging in it again.

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May 24, 2016

A race!

So my order to NewEgg was for two flash disks and two cans of compressed air "dusters", and as always seems to be the case Newegg divided them into two orders and shipped from two locations.

The flash disks shipped from Oakland by Fedex overnight, and Fedex tracking says they're at the Portland sort facility and on track to deliver today "before 8 PM".

The dusters shipped from Tukwila, WA by UPS overnight, and UPS tracking says it's in Portand and on track to deliver "by end of day".

So who will win the race, Fedex or UPS? Stay tuned...

UPDATE: AND THEY'RE OFF! UPS tracking shows "Out for delivery" as of 0701.

UPDATE: Fedex shows the package at Lake Oswego as of 0817.

UPDATE: Starting from the pit lane, Fedex now reports the package on a truck out for delivery at 0852.

UPDATE: And there's the checkered flag! 1220 Fedex wins. Now to see how well these memory sticks work.

UPDATE: I might have known; like all mass storage makers, they're using 109 as a "gig" instead of 230. Windows says 468G.

UPDATE: And a 22G transfer went at 33 MB/s, compared to about 12 MB/s for the USB2 drives. I think we have a winner here.

UPDATE: And UPS limps across the finish line at 1320. And now I can go take a nap, thank goodness, because I really need one.

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May 15, 2016

A public apology

I seem to have spoiled Wonderduck's fun regarding this week's F1 race in Barcelona. I'm very sorry; I thought I had waited long enough, but apparently not.

Next time I'll keep my typing fingers in my pocket.

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Livestock report


No sign of any baby ducks yet this year, which is a bit surprising. But we've got three goslings, which first showed up about three days ago. I tossed some bread out for them and they dutifully posed for your pleasure.

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January 22, 2016


I hope that Brickmuppet's legendary bad luck decides to take this weekend off. He, and everyone else in eastern Virginia, are going to have enough trouble as it is.

They're saying that DC might get three feet of snow, which would be amusing. The mayor of DC has already apologized for not handling it well, even before the snow began to fall.

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