Category Archives: Daily post

I feel guilty

I should have posted something way before now, but I just haven’t had anything to write about beyond a bad massage and a frustrating day with DART (regional public transit agency) that happened to both be on the same day. If I think of something to write about that doesn’t have to wait for a certain day to be published, I’ll post it posthaste.

I’ve been a good hubby this week

I made dinner twice this week, and paid for it twice more. I grant that when I made dinner it was not a severe test of my culinary abilities, as Monday was lentil stew made in the crock pot with carrots and onions and a potato, Tuesday was microwave scrambled eggs and sausage, which is literally using a fork to mix whole eggs together with milk until the yolks are broken and frothy, and microwaving them in a big coffee cup until all the liquid cooks off. Tonight’s dinner was Taco Bell, and Thanksgiving is from Spring Creek Barbeque, and Friday is probably going to be leftovers.

So that’s almost an entire week that Mrs. the Poet doesn’t have to do anything more strenuous than pour the drinks for dinner and I even dished up the ice cream and Oreos for dessert, twice. And I’m also the guy that loads and runs the dishwasher. I tell you, I’m a catch, and I’m already caught.

This is a momentous date in history

There are many things that happened on November 23. The end of Camelot. The beginning of Doctor Who. This blog. Let’s go back to the others, the first airing of Doctor Who was a few hours after JFK breathed his last in the ER at Parkland hospital, the same ER I was treated in after my wreck. 

So, I wonder how this works for Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon? How many degrees from KB am I? I’m 2 degrees away from JFK by virtue of getting treated in Parkland. That makes me 4 degrees away from KB who appeared in JFK.

I can’t suicide by coffee

Sometimes weird things come through my Google searches based on suggestions. I had been doing some safety searches for a friend when “LD 50 Caffeine” came up in the suggestion box, so I clicked on the suggestion. 

Death from caffeine ingestion appears to be rare, and most commonly caused by an intentional overdose of medications.[123] In 2016, 3702 caffeine-related exposures were reported to Poison Control Centers in the United States, of which 846 required treatment at a medical facility, and 16 had a major outcome; and several caffeine-related deaths are reported in case studies.[123] The LD50 of caffeine in humans is dependent on individual sensitivity, but is estimated to be 150–200 milligrams per kilogram (2.2 lb) of body mass (75–100 cups of coffee for a 70 kg (150 lb) adult).[124][failed verification] There are cases where doses as low as 57 milligrams per kilogram have been fatal.[125] A number of fatalities have been caused by overdoses of readily available powdered caffeine supplements, for which the estimated lethal amount is less than a tablespoon.[126] The lethal dose is lower in individuals whose ability to metabolize caffeine is impaired due to genetics or chronic liver disease.[127] A death was reported in a man with liver cirrhosis who overdosed on caffeinated mints.

That means by the time I get close to even a harmful dose of Vitamin C2 my kidneys are already flushing it out of my 190 pound (86 Kg) body. I might damage my kidneys, but I wouldn’t be in mortal peril from drinking as much coffee as I could chug. My liver has been tested several times during drug evaluations, and as the family joke goes when I die they are going to have to beat my liver to death with a stick. I have several now-deceased relatives who were legendary drinkers with high alcohol tolerance, but who never-the-less not alcoholics as they could go months without drinking to no obvious ill effects, between drinking sessions that would have killed others from alcohol poisoning, also with no obvious ill effects. I have never seen any need to emulate their feats, so my own tolerance is still in question. Mind you these were all relatives on my father’s side, mostly related via my grandfather.

But this is secondary to my coffee consumption, which is currently running about a liter per day. At that rate I will live forever as far as dangerous amounts of caffeine are concerned.

Twelve years gone

I moved this blog over from MySpace November 23 2008. That makes twelve years since I did the move. I had been looking for a new place to home the blog since MySpace started censoring the blog for having too many links, back when I was reporting on bike wrecks by linking to articles on other sites that had first or second-hand reports about people getting hit on bicycles. I’m not going to say I was in any way responsible, but this was shortly before MySpace went down the proverbial tubes.

Twelve years, at least eight of which I spent mired in virtual gore and broken lives, trying futilely to keep what happened to me from happening to other people. It might not have been futile, I might have saved one or two people from getting hit because of my protocols for not getting hit. But that was only a drop in the bucket, comparatively. Thousands of people still got hit every year and had their lives permanently altered, and almost never for the better. Hundreds more had their lives ended every year. And that was just in the US. It felt like I was swimming upstream in a Mississippi of blood, and I had to stop for my own mental health.

Which brings us to the current phase of the blog. I almost never mention bicycles, because I’m still not quite over when I got hit on mine. As you might have noticed I’m letting another old obsession run wild, my obsession with hot rods. I used to be a sports car racer way back when, and there has been some cross-pollination between the two cultures with my favorite competition, autocross, becoming the “new thing” for hot rodders as shown with the Optima Ultimate Street Car Battle, and Goodguys Rod and Custom shows, and minor or major gatherings of hot rodders all over the country having autocrosses as part of the show. I used to be pretty good at autocross, winning class and placing high overall, so this time I’m planning on building the type of car I’ve wanted since 1968 to run the type of racing I was good at since the early 1980s, with a few touches of my own. The biggest “touch” is an exo-skeleton frame inspired by sprint cars, mostly because the rectangular tube ladder frame of most T-buckets had the torsional stiffness of cooked pasta and was very heavy for what you got in structure, and the suspensions that you got from most kits was rudimentary at best, with high roll centers and a habit of jacking the inside rear tire during hard cornering causing a sudden transition from plowing understeer to oversteer in the blink of an eye. Not the vehicle for making FTOD runs on an autocross course. And putting a roll cage on for safety made putting the body on an exercise in full scale building ships in bottles.

So, there you have it. A nutshell look at where we came from, where we are, and maybe where we are going.

Saw a funny poster

…In the background of a web comic. The scene was in a coffeeshop in Anchorage AK, and a small advertising poster said “Coffee, the WD40 of adulting”. I wouldn’t go that far, because I also use other sources of caffeine, and I’m not generally homicidal before coffee. Other times, yeah, but the level of caffeine in my blood is only a tiny piece of the puzzle for instigating homicidal rage. Now I’m not going to say it’s safe to push my buttons prior to coffee, because if you’re pushing my buttons prior to coffee, you already did something to make me angry just by being there.

Also something has updated on my site and the text is eyestrainingly small on posts. I didn’t do it so I don’t know how to un-do it. Just know that I don’t like it either and I’m trying to fix it. And I just bumbled around and fixed it in the font settings for the post, which I hope sticks for all the posts.

Glutes still hurt

That’s pretty much standard these days, but that doesn’t keep it from getting really annoying. If I had the funds I would be getting a massage every week, just my neck and my glutes, and a full body massage once a month to catch everything else.

I entered a contest for a 427 cu. in. small block Ford engine that puts out a smooth 450 plus crank HP. The only problem I have is the transmission to bolt to it for the Sprint-T. Ford overdrive automatics have a bad reputation for puking internal parts when they are bolted to high power engines like the one I entered to win, and I still don’t have enough space to put three pedals between the left side of the transmission tunnel and the inside of the body for a manual transmission. But there are people who say they can bolt any transmission to any engine given enough time and money. Time I sorta got, money, not so much. But if I win this engine it’s a huge step forward for the Sprint-T, and has the “advantage” of putting a Ford in a Ford. Some people think that’s important or something. For me in this car, an engine is an engine, power and weight are more important than brand. The frame has room for just about anything smaller than a Roll-Royce Merlin.

We are still waiting to know when the money from the trust is deposited to my account, and for my first Social Security check to hit the account. We are all on tenterhooks because of previous economic disasters that have befallen Casa de El Poeta, and kinda crossing our fingers that nothing else strikes before then. Between this influx of cash and Social Security we should be semi-permanently above water, assuming Trump doesn’t destroy everything on the way out the door. I know that’s a huge assumption, but we have to keep hopes up.

Currently listening to “The Pretender” by Infected Mushroom.

Things are ungood

My economic situation has not been good lately, and neither has my physical situation.

Let’s get to the physical situation first because it’s almost funny.

I had to use the cards I got paid with from the job I was laid off from to go to CVS to buy a few groceries on Saturday. In the process I had to remove my keychain from my backpack I use like a purse so they could scan my loyalty  card and I forgot to put it back on the bag. So I had to go get it back because keys Etc. So, about a half-mile out my shoes untied themselves and I had to re-tie them so I wouldn’t trip over them. I got the right shoe tied no problem, but as I was tying the left shoe I lost my balance and fell down, and as I was getting up I did something and my right glutes started hurting and not working up to tolerances, forget specs. I was 0.6 miles from Casa de El Poeta when I decided to exercise the better part of valor and return to the house without my keys. And I did, staggering like a drunk to go read comics in the newspaper and on my computer and rejoin the game group in progress, where I was introduced to our new hacker as a local legend, The Old Man. I didn’t get much done in-game, but stuff was accomplished without me.

Now, about the finances, I set things up so that when I get my SS payment some goes into the firewalled account that I can only access by coming in-person and chatting with a teller to transfer money to an account that has external access, and some to my regular savings account that I can get to by finding an ATM and using my card to withdraw cash, or by coming in-person to transfer money to an account with direct access. The firewalled account draws more interest than the other two, and I use it to accumulate money for things like taxes and insurance. This way I don’t spend the budget for taxes and insurance on other stuff and I get more interest than sticking it in the checking account. The money in the savings account is for other things and to accumulate until I have enough for some big ticket stuff I can’t just pay for out of petty cash. What’s left is Petty Cash.

I also arranged for the money from closing the trust to be deposited in the firewalled account for taking care of taxes and insurance this year. I expect the firewalled account to be very flush by this time next year. As the saying goes, I may be crazy, but I’m not stupid. I’m making sure the house is taken care of so we don’t end up on the street.

And that’s enough of a peek into my finances for now. As for the rest of it, my glutes still hurt but I’m walking close to normal now, just need to use the cane a little more than usual.

Does stuff like this happen to other people?

Or am I in another story again? I had some coupons for fast food in my drawstring bag that I use like the classic definition of a purse. Well the other day the coupons were no longer in the bag, and when I found them a few hours later the expiration date had changed to a month later than it was the last time I used the coupons. The day was the same, but the month was 12 instead of 11. Does $hit like this only happen to me, or does it happen to one or more of my readers?

I know these were the same coupons because I had torn one out of the sheet last month to use, and the torn edges were still there. I had used the coupon in early October and an expiration date in November made sense, but now the expiration date was in December, which doesn’t make sense. Normally these coupons are good for one month or sometimes two, but more than two hasn’t happened before and the expiration date changing by a month, well that makes me wonder about my grasp on reality.

Like I wrote at the start of the post, when stuff like this happens it usually means my story got handed off to a new writer who wants to use something as a plothook later in the story. I’m thinking these coupons are like that, I’m supposed to do something that having the coupons facilitates, like I’m in the store when something happens or I meet someone there as I’m using the coupon. This must be what it feels like in comics where some of the characters know they are in a story, but everyone else is oblivious. And worse think that the characters who know this is a story are crazy. There are things getting retconned and I know it, but nobody else sees it because they aren’t writers, so they can’t pull themselves out of the story and see what’s happening. It’s like Chekov’s Gun only it isn’t a gun it’s something else that is supposed to cause a plot twist. And I hate getting caught in a plot twist.

So, either I’m crazy, or something in the world is. And I really H8 when that happens.

News from the Lab Rat Keeper

I got two things to report from today’s trip to the Lab Rat Keeper. First thing is I am now down to 191 pounds (87 Kg), which puts me almost 30 pounds down from January. Second thing is they are testing a different kind of med for reducing hypertension that controls the stress reaction that raises blood pressure. I had an aphasia attack so I couldn’t ask if this was something that blocked the cortisol reaction or something else, but it is something that gets into the chain of hormones released by prolonged stress which puts the cortisol reaction square at the top of the list of suspects. Since my BP has been spiking throughout the election and pandemic, I’m a prime test subject for this med.

In less grim news I’m still plugging away at trying to make the front bulkhead and steering box mount both light and rigid. I’m not going into soporific details, just that I’m using as simple a structure as I can, tying it in as many triangles as I can, as cheap as I can. I’m not going to the ridiculous extremes I did back in 1975 when I triangulated the webs of a box beam in a structures contest (it did prevent failure in a twisting mode that wasn’t part of the contest), but I did triangulate in multiple planes. Given no failures from manufacturing defects (that’s saying if I can make it right, and I didn’t make anything undersized for the forces involved) that steering box ain’t going nowhere the entire car doesn’t go with it.

And that pretty much covers everything I needed to say today. Lost weight, new med, and hope I got it right on the mount. Oh yeah, one other thing. You don’t need to thank me for my service until we know if we have anything left to save after Trump leaves.