Millions of chastened New york gun owners rush to comply with Apr 15 AW registration deadline

Or wait…

No, my bad. They did the other thing instead.


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Feel like I got a gold star in elementary school.

Next appointment in six months. I passed the course, and walked out with a prescription for a shiny new pair of glasses. Yay!

Then I crossed the street to Wal-Mart and found out I can’t order said glasses till I have $130 in hand. Boo!

Then I got a call from Darrel the Former Cop, saying he’d finished my knife sheath. Yay!

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And it’s that time again.

Happy tax day, guys. I’m off to get my eyes examined. Again.

Here are funny pictures.



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I hate it when I’m right…

Yesterday afternoon the weather turned nasty. Extremely windy, among other things, and in the midst of it my internet connection got v-e-r-r-y s-l-o-o-o-w.

Regular readers will recall that the same thing happened last Monsoon, and that I spent months – months! – passively waiting for a repair guy to come do the mysterious stuff that would get this mysterious stuff working again. And at the end of all that he tightened three screws and went away.

Well, I could’ve done that. I have a wrench. But I had a bad feeling this time that if the problem was dish positioning, a simple turn of a wrench wouldn’t solve my problem.

I hate it when I’m right.


I really do have to get this poor cabin sided. The bolts have indeed pulled out of the wall as I feared, but that’s not the real problem. This OSB sheet has badly deteriorated. It seems to be the worst of the bunch – which figures, doesn’t it? Since it’s the one tasked to hold up that weight? – and I can replace it easily enough but this stuff just wasn’t meant to take weather as long as it has taken it.

Clearly, I also need to come up with a better dish mount than this. I’ll be canvassing the neighborhood for suggestions in the next couple of days; I’m far from the only person out here who can only see the world through a little satellite dish.

So anyway, I applied the Beverly Hillbillies approach to satellite communications problems and it has proven a genuine, though no doubt temporary, solution. But if I drop out entirely, the subject of that picture is the most likely reason. Working on it.

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The Taser Shot Heard ‘Round the World…

Probably most people do this. I tend to get my news and commentary exclusively from a few bookmarked sites, chosen because they don’t often pressure-test my cerebral arteries. Because I’m an anarchist whackjob and am capable of becoming enraged by writers on both of the points on the political spectrum that most people acknowledge, it’s a short list. I don’t normally care what the gasbags from either MSNBC or Fox have to say about anything. Might look them up for purposes of ridicule, but that’s about it.

But this morning I lay in bed thinking, “I wonder how the rest of the country is taking that business in Nevada?” Continue reading

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Ever notice that all these crises tend to be caused by the people supposedly responsible for resolving crises?

I sure wish more people noticed that.

It seems the Bundy Ranch crisis, at least, ended on a positive note. The Bundy Ranch Affair, of course, is not over.

‘After 20 years and multiple court orders to remove the trespass cattle, Mr. Bundy owes the American taxpayers in excess of $1 million. The BLM will continue to work to resolve the matter administratively and judicially,’ the statement said.

Translation: “When the furor over this has died down, that damned Bundy character is going under the biggest bus we can find. But not today.”

But the crisis passed, and it passed in a manner the charred ghosts of a bunch of Branch Davidians must bitterly envy. Continue reading

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Incremental improvements…

The forecast still insists we’ll have thunderstorms by eleven, a bit more than an hour from now. A glance at the sky tempts one to laugh…


…But experience says that when it dawns this windy, one shouldn’t try to predict the afternoon weather. It actually might rain today.

But in the meantime I’ve been waiting for a sunny morning because I want to note any measurable improvement in my solar power system’s charging ability.


With the existing panels giving me about 340 watts and the new bigger batteries, my system normally goes from Bulk Charge to Float at around eleven on a sunny morning. Depending on usage, of course.


All other things being equal, the addition of 45 watts of panel should have a measurable effect on that. But how much? Inquiring minds really do want to know. So I needed a cloudless morning to remove variables. Naturally the past two mornings have been overcast.

But not today!


And at 9:45, as Landlady and I returned from the shooting range, my system was still in Bulk but flirting with 14 volts. It goes into float at somewhere above 14.3, so looking good.

That means my system is still overpowered for its battery size, which is what I want. It was before, but now it’s a little more so. Not every day is cloudless.

ETA: Yup. It went to Float while I was typing that. So, measurable improvement.

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“But what will I wear?”

Got invited over to Landlady’s for a chicken dinner. S&L are meeting us before dinner for beers. I always clean up for such things, I’m not a complete jerk, but in the past year or two my standards of grooming have become much more conventional. I cut my hair these days, trim my beard, and when I’m going to town or somewhere else where people are likely to be I’m a little more concerned over whether the holes in my t-shirt show.

This occasion is as close to black-tie as it ever gets, so I bathed thoroughly and found my best t-shirt and jeans. Which is about as close to black-tie as I ever dress.

Ghost is already over there, of course, and Little Bear is just too much to have underfoot so he’s gonna have to guard the homestead alone tonight. I’ll bring him back something nice.

The last woodcutting of the season this afternoon, just whatever juniper was still piled in the yard. Time to clean the saw for storage and get the chains serviced. This is going over to Landlady’s rack. She paid me 500 .44 lead bullets to keep her rack full over the winter, and it will finish the winter full. If I hadn’t needed a bath before, I did after this. Juniper is usable as firewood but you work for it: Big pile of trigs and trash for a smallish pile of stovewood.

Speaking of .44′s…

I laugh at myself when I’m getting dressed to go out somewhere social and start agonizing over which handgun to wear. The Springfield is my nicest gun, though somewhat worn it’s all honest scars. Maybe that would go better with nicer clothes. Or I could de-emphasize the whole “he’s the only one here wearing a gun” thing with the Mak. Or go completely IWB with the PA-63.

What the hell – I’m among friends. My every-day beater Taurus won’t offend anybody.wear3

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In regard to that Bundy ranch thing, get a load of this.

I don’t think I ever heard of the Bundy Ranch thing before the current standoff, my bad, and I haven’t commented because I don’t know enough to rate an opinion. From everything I’ve read in the past few days, it’s very complicated and there are no clear-cut good guys. You already know who my jerking knee wants to designate as the bad guys*.

But as I understand it, everything was copacetic until the BLM decided they cared more about a tortoise than about Bundy’s grazing lease. So how are things going for the tortoises?

*Of course I also have opinions about ranchers and their *%$&!ing grazing leases.

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Prediction: As a trial balloon, “The IRS is the real victim here” will not be a keeper

“The IRS are the ones (sic) who have been actually targeted.” Seriously?

Who is this broad? And why do her writers hate her so?

Also: While Joseph McCarthy may indeed be a stain on American history and I’m not at all clear what he has to do with any of this anyway, in the fullness of time his fevered paranoid delusions about all those commies everywhere turned out to be pretty much … right, as I recall.

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Y’know…when you see it all together like that, it’s kinda creepy.

Sounds like love. Which would creep me right the hell out if that were my name he kept wheezing. “This restraining order by the


demands that I get off their lawn…”

On the other hand, put a red pointy hat on the shriveled little gnome and stand him out in the garden and he’d serve a marginal purpose…

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See Joel. See Joel Finish Projects. Finish, Joel, Finish!

I love Spring!

panelIt occurred to me the other day as I planned how I was going to mount this solar panel that I have never actually installed a panel in a working system in my life. I’ve assisted several times, and I’ve wired them into ad-hoc circuits several times. But this is the first time I’ve ever done it for real on a live, complete solar power system. This little panel should bring me up to almost 400 watts, which isn’t really necessary but will help a little on cloudy days. And I actually completed it, from cutting the wood to sealing the holes, all in the same morning. Which, given my title of the Great Procrastinator, has to be worth an atta-boy or two.

Boy, you can just barely get a full-size shelving unit into that little metal shed, and even then you need to shorten it a bit. But it works. And it’s completely done.

That green smudge near the bottom right is not a strange light on the Martian landscape, but my very first poor doomed seedling of the year. A pea plant, as it happens.

And so to lunch!

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In answer to Weer’d's anti-gun image of the day…

In answer to this


ETA: This naturally got me thinking about one of my all-time favorite movie scenes. The moment you accept your opponent’s premise, you lose the battle of wits. Everything else is just talk.

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Boy, I got boned.

I got the social ineptitude, but not the knack.

After the massive class-action lawsuit against all parents on behalf of all socially inept non-engineer children, I’m thinking we’ll need a huge government aid program. Hopefully I can pitch it by at least July, otherwise I’ll have to wait for the next election cycle.

H/T The Silicon Graybeard.

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What kind of sad, sick, masochistic little turd would you need to be…

To ever want to be Jay Carney?

I wonder: Does the administrative branch run an R&R sanitarium for retiring WH press secretaries? That really ought to be in the contract.

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So, okay…

This is just the world we live in these days.


That’s all right, I guess. It means we’re still talking. When I was younger I expected we’d be shooting long before now.

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73! Fahrenheit!

It was a mild winter, no complaints, but it sure has been a slow, cool spring. Windy, too, for the past several days. But today couldn’t have been improved on. I was in a t-shirt by 10, and by my standards got quite a bit done outside.

Laundry, always a tedious drag, gets easier with some Emmylou Harris wafting through the open window.

I got this panel from GC Guy for hauling off that metal shed – which I’m also gonna use. It’s only 45 watts, but every little bit helps and there have been times in the winter and monsoon when I wished I had a bit more panel. It’s going on top of the powershed, so installation will be no big gig. I didn’t install it but I did get it tested and some new cable run.

Got that shed’s insides cleaned up and sealed. I’ll put the door back on as soon as the foam cures.

Finished the fencing on my new garden spot. Still not sure how I’m gonna hang the gate, though.

And look!
Look how prettily my pear tree is leafing out! It got its first good soaking of the year today.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I shall go deal with chickens and then knead bread dough before I have to close the cabin back up. Nights are still usually in the high 20′s here, though tonight the forecast says low forties.

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Oh, Eric! You’re so masterful!

Kinda sounded like a threat to me.

I’ll go ahead and confess I commit Contempt of Congress six times before breakfast every day, but I refuse to say anything nice about Holder so he probably shouldn’t be doing it.

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Boy, they’re not going to let this go, are they?

So as part of their “common sense reforms,” the administration will magically endow itself with the authority to magically endow the DOJ with the authority to make somebody’s buddies richer by decreeing that only ID-locked guns may be sold. Despite that this old idea has never been made to work reliably and (of course) police, military and VIP security will most certainly remain exempt.

And this particular boondoggle will only cost 2 mill of the $382.1 million Holder wants to spend on “gun safety” in fiscal ’15. I am not making this up. According to the article, that’s not even a subset of the more than a billion Obama wants to spend to “protect Americans from gun violence—including $182 million to support the president’s ‘Now is the Time’ gun safety initiative.”

This has got to be nothing more than crony capitalism; they can’t really believe any of this bullshit could actually move the situation in any direction but underground. Have these people never heard of a black market? I’m reasonably sure that if they force the kind of violence here that they’ve created in Central America with their drug war, we’ll be more competent at it than some cartel of stoned Mexicans.

(No offense meant to our southern neighbors, but Jesus. Learn to shoot. Or join the NYPD or LAPD where you’re apparently supposed to blaze away indiscriminately. Or the IMPD where you get to do it stoned.)

On the surface at least, ID-locked guns aren’t a completely horrible idea in some circumstances. In a household with a lot of little kids you really shouldn’t leave your handguns lying around the way I do, but burying them in a vault isn’t an attractive option either. If it were: A: proven completely reliable, and B: operated in some very uncomplicated way that wouldn’t fail me in the shit, and C: absolutely, positively could not be defeated by the ‘proper authorities’ (ha), and D: didn’t double the cost of the gun, and E: wasn’t mandated by Eric “Sleazeball” Holder, well then … I still wouldn’t buy one because it doesn’t address any problem I have. But it might interest people like my daughter, who has a little kid.

Or it might not. And where is the sane universe where the government doesn’t get to arrogate to itself the power to make those decisions? Because I want to move there.

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A tearful nation says farewell…

From here.

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