Author Archives: Joel

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.

Your inspirational message for the day…

Yeah. You know what else is really expensive? Paint, that’s what. I recall those halcyon days of yesteryear when the Lair didn’t have paintable siding. The winter wind whistled through the walls, true, but I didn’t have to pay for … Continue reading

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CBS: We’ll have more on the looming menace of Nazism in a moment. But first…

“Here’s a word about the wonders of eugenics!” With the rise of prenatal screening tests across Europe and the United States, the number of babies born with Down syndrome has significantly decreased, but few countries have come as close to … Continue reading

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Commerce in the Boonies

One big problem with non-centralized solar power generating systems is that, while solar panel, inverter and charge controller technology has advanced greatly in the past 20 years, we’re stuck with 100-year-old battery technology. Household deep-cycle batteries are mostly just hugely … Continue reading

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Mystery solved.

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It’s not yet the middle of the month and I’m upside down on my bandwidth limit…

…and I swear I wasn’t surfing porn or downloading torrent files or colluding with Russians online, but I did spend part of the afternoon reading news sites and trying to get some handle on that business in Virginia other than … Continue reading

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…and it only took three hours.

Look! I can still wire the simplest practical circuit! And that’s not even a permanent light fixture. Big Brother’s sending me another long LED lamp like the one under the kitchen counter, to use as a bed reading lamp. So … Continue reading

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“Escaping the Goolag”

It makes me a little sad. I remember when Google was geeky cool. But you’re not allowed to rule the world, even if you promise to ‘not be evil.’ So there’s talk about how to “fire Google,” and probably Brad … Continue reading

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“Those people are quite strange.”

“How could you own a single flashlight?” Going on two years ago I wrote a post called The Cult of the Flashlight that occasionally still comes back to haunt me. I am not renowned for my people skills, I’m prone … Continue reading

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“Whoops. Guess not.”

It has rained all afternoon. Nothing dramatic, no huge scary storms, just rain. And I decided, around 2:30, that I should take advantage of a lull in the showers to run over to Landlady’s place to tend her chickens, and … Continue reading

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Dude looks like a dude.

A couple of months ago I wrote, “Please tell me he’s not going to be on the cover in a bustier.” Nope. Expensive swimsuit. Sincerely, it’s too late to worry about America “becoming” weird. If you want to cut your … Continue reading

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The auto airbag story has always interested me…

…because I was there. I wasn’t directly involved, I was in technician training, but I was there at a Ford product development facility where things got argued about. And the “consumer safety advocates” and the auto engineers and bureaucrats weren’t … Continue reading

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UPS trucks don’t do deep sand well.

I just gave up on the day and started a movie when the phone rang. “There’s a UPS truck stuck in the wash crossing.” Oh, shit. “OUR wash crossing?” “Yup,” You remember that big sinkhole I told you about – … Continue reading

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If I can’t see it, it isn’t there.

Somebody at Yale got offended by a stylized blunderbuss on an old statue. So they fixed the statue. Thank heaven some brave soul did that. A student or faculty member might have seen that, been triggered, and melted all over … Continue reading

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The peanut butter jar isn’t empty…

…until Little Bear says the peanut butter jar is empty.

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Rainy day project

Overcast as hell and it starts to rain every time I go near a paint roller. So I looked around for some other little thing I could do, where it’s not a disaster if I get rained on while I’m … Continue reading

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Works for me…

The Donald is well on his way to being a big disappointment to me. But he’d have to be a huge disappointment indeed not to maintain a place in my regard just because He Isn’t Hillary. H/T to Kentucky.

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Spent some donated money on a new tool today…

Today was supposed to be a big painting day, and the big question I pondered as I lay awake before rising was “How the hell am I going to paint the top of the peak?” I did it two years … Continue reading

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Have you seen Google’s new slogan?

And look! There’s a story. At publishing time, the Company had deployed its police force to arrest a citizen for googling, “How many genders are there?” shortly after firing an employee for questioning whether men and women were different. According … Continue reading

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Wow, that session didn’t last long at all.

So this morning’s task was to get the front of the Lair all one color – at least its lower tier. Got that much done. Then I had to decide: Turn left, or go up? I was on a roll … Continue reading

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Finally got you, you crafty little SOB.

I bought a new trap, because sometimes old traps stop attracting rats. I tried the ol’ tried and true peanut butter, I tried sunflower seeds. He ignored them both. I stopped setting the trap for a couple of nights, then … Continue reading

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