Yay! I can finally use wordpress again!

So, after several months and 3 new versions I can finally use WordPress.  I am underwhelmed.  

It is the end of another year, and I am still wondering where it all went.  But to everyone out there I say  Have a Joyous and Wonderful New Year. 

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The Busy Season

Well, we’re finally getting into the busy season, I haz stuffs to doooo. Oh my goodness.

So they seem to be slowly working me into the schedule, mostly by my boss pimping me out to other divisions of the company.  I guess my wide-ranging experience, I get bored easily,  is finally paying off.  It’s been a rather busy few weeks, I’ve been to four meetings and a full-blown upgrade by way of ” Can you get here by tomorrow?”, next month looks to be rather busy too, then I’m thumb twiddling until Nov. Dec.   It’s been a busy month for recruiters too, at least 2 or 3 a day, most of them want me to take a 20-30% cut in pay and do more work.  I’m not a CAD guy, I don’t do CAD, I do Controls, in the field, I don’t ride a desk, I ride an airplane to my next site.  “We want you to travel 80% of the time and still do a month worth of office work on the 4 days a month that you’re here, oh and you’ll be salary so we will make sure that you have to put in at least 60 – 80 hrs./week for 40 hrs. of pay, and we’re only willing to pay you an entry level engineering salary”.  That is SOOOOO TEMPTING, but I think you need to find someone more masochistic, or just plain stupid.   I have a job, I have skills, I have experience, you need me, I don’t need you.  True I spend more time than I’s like going “Hey guys, does anybody have any office work that I can do for them?” but I get to learn what equipment each site has, just in case I need to go there, someday, maybe.

I’ve finally been able to get some reading done too, I picked up Cedar Sandersons “Warp Resonance” 5 short stories with female protagonists, a fun little two hour read.  The new David Drake Lt. Leary book, an enjoyable read, as usual.  So I’m down to about 200 books in my “to read” pile.

I’ve finally figured out how to tune my Megasquirt, pretty simple when you figure out what’s going on and why.  I was told that it had been tuned really fat, alcahol fuel fat, turns it thsat it was so lean that I was in danger of burning my valves and melting a hole in a piston.  The new tune is working quite well, not finished yet, but much better, it idles without the choke now.

Another Month Done

Well, here’s another month gone. I was actually allowed to do real work, with real people, imagine that.  I did a couple of system upgrades, even being sent back to the hotel for a day so the site could get their poop in a group and install the bypasses, which they didn’t manage to do, we were still able to get done ahead of schedule.  All in all, a good week, but I need to be able to string more of those together.

I guess it’s back to paperwork and twiddling my thumbs.

 

TTFN Everyone.

 

It’s My Birfday!

Or I like to call it Thursday.  Yep, I’m another year older and working on my birthday. To be honest, I usually forget it’s my birthday until someone wishes me a Happy Birthday, this year it was one of my sisters, and Arby’s, and Shanghai Bistro, and Applebee’s, Famous Dave’s, Taco John’s, Advance Auto, and several online forums, and a radio station down in TN, that one I don’t get, living here in the frozen north.  But I still have to work, but my “Give a Sh!t” is busted, but the work must get done.  

The heck with it, I need a dozen 1k resistors, so I’m heading to Radio Shack, yes, there’s one about 5 miles from me, you’d almost think I planned my home purchase based on the proximity to a DIY electronics store, but no I based it on the amount of acreage, lack of neighbors, and easy driving distance to a decent sized airport.  But I need some resistors so I can put some LEDs in the dash of my Scirocco, the LC1 needs an LED to flash trouble codes, and I’m building a digital dash for my Moto Guzzi, I have a set of digital gauges from Nordskog so now I need LEDs for the idiot lights, turn indicators and high beam indicator.

I’m thinking that maybe I should make this blog more useful rather than just using it for my meandering thoughts.   

Thoughts? Suggestions?  Hello? Anybody out there?  Just kidding.

 

 

Happy Birthday America!!!

OK, OK, more like Happy Conception Day, but that really doesn’t roll off the tongue very well now does it.  Well it’s technically Independence Day, a nice long weekend full of mowing my lawn and getting my old car ready for the Street Machine Nationals, and doing other peoples work because they’re “too busy”, I’ve seen their versions of this and I’m pretty sure my manager “encouraged” them to move the work over to me.  I’m still adding site data from three or four years ago, damned frustrating.

My yard is way too big, yet not big enough. I have just over 3 acres but about an acre is “navigable waterway”  which , according to the neighbor’s dog, means it holds just enough water to make a great mud puddle to roll around in, for almost two whole days after it rains. It takes almost a full day to mow with the rider, I mowed it twice with the push mower and it took three 8 hour days to finish both times, so I lived on ramen and beans  and just mowed the front quarter for three months until I could afford a 20+ horse rider.  So, as you can see, the yard is too big, but I can’t build another shop building on it, or go hunting on it, so it’s too small, but it’s the original house for the 40 acre farm and has an existing machine shed on it, but the machine shed has a dirt floor with a two foot drop over 60 feet, that’s going to be a lot of fill when I finally concrete the floor.

Squee!  I get to take my car to the Street Machine Nationals!  But I’m not geeking out or anything.  While I wish I was taking my ’69 Olds Cutlass S, I’ll settle for taking my ’78 VW Scirocco.  Will it win any awards?  I seriously doubt it. I bought it with most of the mods in place, and most of those only half done, it has 1 power window, it was installed on the driver’s side, it has a single gas strut for the hood, which makes the hood sit funny, the rear parcel shelf was replaced with pegboard and the rear hatch strap mounts were done quite well, the pivot was not well thought out and failed miserably as a hinge, I spent more time reseating the shelf because pivot shifted and the shelf fell down than I care to, but I fixed that, the speaker wires were cut off about halfway up the car, why, I have no idea, I fixed that too.  The car has 3 speakers, but no radio, I hope to fix that this weekend, and have 4 speakers and a radio, but first I need to figure out where all these wires go.  PO ran all red wires when he worked on it, two other people also worked on the electrical, each of them adding more colors to the all red mess, but there are still a lot of red wires, some are signal, some are hot and some are ground.  Yay. At least the engine swap was done fairly well, out came the 1.5 or 1.6l  and CIS and in went the 1.8l with Megasquirt, so from mechanical fuel injection to tuneable electronic fuel injection, unfortunately the tune is terrible, it runs a 10:1 AFR tune, gas should be 14.7, I could run pure alcohol on that tune. The brakes now work, installed a new master cylinder, worked like a charm.

Yes I’m rambling, so sue me.  This is just my personal space anyway, almost like an online journal, but less private.

 

 

Getting Better All The Time

Well, Mom is getting better, slowly, cracked ribs, cracked sternum, cracked vertebrae, a collapsed lung, and severe head trauma.  It was horrible, and now Mom almost recognizes us, but not as we are today but as we were 40 years ago.  “Shane? When did you cut your hair?” my brother hasn’t had long hair since 1978.  But she is getting better, she walked to the bathroom yesterday, it may not sound like much, but four days ago she couldn’t stand without someone holding her up, now she can use her walker to go to the bathroom by herself.  My mom was always rather independent, so having to have people help her use the toilet has to be grating on her, now that she’s decided she won’t let it be this way things will improve rapidly.   But she still needs specialized care, so we keep vigil every night, and whoever is staying lets the rest of us know how things are going, she was walking earlier this morning, but that tired her out so she’s dozing right now, but she still isn’t eating enough, so she has a feeding tube.  But she’s walking, which means she’s getting stronger.

Real Life Horror Story

OK, so I’m sitting at my work computer actually working, and I get a phone call.  Mom fell down the stairs, she’s bleeding, they don’t know how long she’s been there, they’re trying to resuscitate her right now.  I spend almost an hour trying to pack because I can’t think, and I’m trying not to collapse on the floor and bawl my eyes out.  Throw some clothes in my duffel, I need my meds, down stairs for the meds, back upstairs,   throw different clothes in the duffel, and the meds, only grabbed two of the bottles, back down grab another bottle I need, spend 5 minutes deciding if I need any of the others, nope, back up with one bottle.  Why didn’t I bring down the duffel?  Oh well, add some more shirts, back down, wait I need my insulin, I need to let my bosses know, I need my computer, I need my e-reader.  It took 10 minutes to decide which to do first, email my bosses, wrote the e-mail, shut down the computer, forgot to send the e-mail.  Grabbed my e-reader, packed my computer, grabbed my duffel, packed the truck, forgot my insulin, unlock the house get my insulin. OK, I’m ready, drive to my sisters, we load her car and off we go. It’s been 2 hours, why haven’t I heard from my boss?  Check my e-mails on my company phone, nothing, check sent mail, I didn’t send my e-mail, rewrite e-mail, send it, now I’m in a dead cell area.

Get to the hospital, meet one of my other sisters, as we wait for Mom to be transferred, one of my nieces arrives, another brother arrives, another brother and his wife arrives, finally Mom arrives, we can’t see her yet, another sister arrives, brother’s wife and her son arrives with clothes, this brother is staying with Mom tonight. Mom is coherent but kind of in pain and irritated, I have to go into the hallway and sit down, Mom is trying to pull things out of her arm, I can’t deal with that, but it passes. Another brother shows up.  The nurses are getting confused, there are 9 of us kids and only 7 within driving distance.

Next day, we go in, Mom is talking about uncle Joe and Alex, Mom asks me “peanuts or rice”   Huh?  “Neither Ma”  “Oh , well I have some here” .  My Mom is so incoherent at this point that she doesn’t recognize anyone, I can’t take it.  Meanwhile, another brother shows up.   We all troop down to the first floor waiting area and get Chinese food, because no one has eaten since about 8 or 9 am and it almost 8 pm at this point.

I’m now waiting to see if the surgery went well to fuse her vertebrae.