Tires and Tech finale


So the desktop PC has been sent back to AAA (the basement). The desktop’s problems are insurmountable and it’s not just the audio. The USB ports are shot, the RAM spikes quite often, and the whole unit just freezes up sometimes. So it’s downstairs, sitting on my mom’s old dining room table where it can pick up the WiFi signal and occasionally be of some use. I hooked up the audio to the basement boombox. I guess it will be useful as a backup if nothing else.

The laptop is now my only option for work or play. It can handle sustained multi-tasking with that I7 core, the audio never cuts out, and it plays nice with Windows 10. There are drawbacks: the cramped keyboard isn’t kind to my ancient hands, the screen is dim in the morning unless it’s rebooted, and the screen is smaller than the monitor I was used to. I can live with this stuff because IT WORKS.

Nothing in this house has been working right for the past few weeks. It’s been one catastrophe after another and I need a break. Using a piece of equipment that actually does what I tell it to do is a godsend right now. Some days the small victories are the ones that matter.

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Tires and Tech II


I spent the morning out at the farm. My cousin, the Singing Farmer, was trying to cross a low spot with an old John Deere tractor and it got stuck. So I came out to drive the larger tractor that was pulling while he steered the stuck one. Then we moved a pickup used for spraying and a water truck.

Back in town, the Singing Farmer took a listen to the Mercury Land Yacht while I drove it up and down the driveway. He was able to isolate the scraping noise to the driver’s side rear wheel. It’s likely something has come loose off the brake pad and is rubbing as the wheel turns. So it’s probably not a major problem but just another thing to add onto the list of what needs to be fixed.

Tech is frustrating. My main external hard drive is in FAIL mode and then one that I was transferring data to got corrupted. So I had to wipe the second drive of the bad files and repair it. In the process of that I lost some music files that cannot easily be replaced. Now I’m slowly moving files off Bad Drive #1 to OK Drive #2. It’s a slow process. Every now and then I hit a file too corrupted to move and that means it’s one file that I have to either replace or it’s just…lost. Most of these are music files. I can replace some easily but if it’s something I ripped from a friend in Minnesota, or from a ROIO site that no longer exists, then I’m shit outa luck. Right not I’m moving some video files and hitting the same issues. It’s frustrating as all hell but what can I do.

By the end of next year we should be in a good position to do something substantial in replacing all this aging tech and shoddy transportation. The operative word is should. The economy of North Dakota is very much centered on commodities and so are we. So we fix what we can, live with what we can’t, and cross our fingers that things will rebound. Like that tractor that came out of the mud today.

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Catuesday – Storm Day


It’s almost 10:30 pm. Outside it’s raining and blowing, one squall after another. Luna (L) and Sansa (R) are just a bit put out. Every other day in June had brought a round of thunderstorms and July has been no better. This particular round of nasty has been going on since last evening. There were some periods of sun today but the winds have been terrible. Our cats hate wind. So these two, who are used to being out until midnight, are peeved. They hear the rain pelting the sliding glass door and see the tree branches whipping in the wind. And they’re not happy with the situation.

On some level I think they realize they’re better off inside but they’re like little kids. All they can think of is that this is a play date denied. In another hour they’ll give up. Luna will climb to her perch in the kitchen. Sansa will either go to the spare bed downstairs or sleep on the bed in the man cave. They’ll have dreams of carnage and chaos. And I’ll go to sleep not wondering when the cats are ready to come inside.

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Somedays I Just Want to Quit This World


Or at least this country. To paraphrase Dean Wormer: racist, violent, and stupid is no way to go through life son.

The tragic part is that many are not learning the harsh lessons of this week. I’ve seen stuff on the Internet accusing the shooting victim in Baton Rouge of being a pedophile and portraying the victim in Falcon Heights MN as an armed robbery suspect. Both of course are false but some would rather pursue a false narrative to justify their bias than accept that two black men were gunned down by cops. And then there’s Dallas. One unhinged man looks at these two deaths and uses it to justify his irrational hatred, going to war with the police. What the hell about peace, love, and understanding do we not get in this country?

Enough already.

Talk to the Hand

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Moving Towards Respectability

beer fridge

The beer fridge has been in a serious state of decline this last year. There’s been far too many weeks where there was nothing other than Coke Zero in that fridge. Money has been an issue and a lack of opportunity the other. But I can’t use the later as an excuse any more. Surly has now crossed the border into North Dakota and it appears that Bells is sending some brews our way that we’ve never seen. It’s a boon for hopheads in this part of the state.

We made a run to Williston to get new tabs/plates for the Family Truckster. After a torturous wait at the DMV we made a supply run to the grocery store. I just got paid for my big project. There’s not a lot to spare once I paid the bills but still, it had been a long time since I was stocked. So I made a quick run to the liquor store. I had very little time to peruse. Carjo was in the Truckster with the dogs and the afternoon had melted her down. I’m known for taking a long time deciding what to get when I’m on a beer run. But I decided in haste and I think I did pretty well. We’ve got Fargo’s Woodchipper IPA, Surly’s Over-rated West Coast IPA, Bell’s Hopsolution Double IPA, and the famed Surly Furious.

I think this will get me through the summer. Don’t you?

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Tires and Tech


Oh, it’s been a couple weeks here for stuff breaking down. Just as I got the Family Truckster going again its air conditioning when out. The Mercury Land Yacht has developed a scraping/grinding sound whenever the wheels are turning. The first problem is likely fixable, just somewhat expensive. Even if it’s just a matter of replenishing the freon the cost out here in the hinterlands is more than you’d pay in a city. I am not enthused. The later problem is likely ridiculously expensive. So we have once again we have one vehicle running (albeit with no A/C) and the one with 70K less miles that has A/C isn’t fit or safe to drive. As my maternal granny would say, “ai yi yi yi yi”.

Tech isn’t treating us better. The last IOS update has slowed down our iPhone 4s. Carjo’s desktop is making a lovely humming sound on its way to collapse. My desktop is staggering under the weight of Windows 10 again and probably some other aging issues. Death may be imminent. I still have a functioning laptop but using the keys for a prolonged period of time is fatiguing for my aging fingers. Ai yi yi yi yi.

I don’t know what’s next that will give out. Probably my testicles. I’ll keep you updated on that.

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‘Merika! Happy Birthday!


Stay safe, stay hydrated, and I’ll see y’all tomorrow.

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