Category Archives: Daily post

I’m a WIMP, and I didn’t go to the fair today.

I’m a Weakly Interactive Massive Particle and I didn’t feel like interacting today (sub-atomic physics joke). Seriously, it’s gotten hot and very humid again today with evening thunderstorms in the forecast, and I just didn’t feel like going through that again just to have more Fair Food, even though Mrs. the Poet and I sat down and went over the Fair Food she wanted me to try and describe to her. I’m not a foodie, but I do have a good sense of taste and a handle on descriptive language for food, so she wants me to eat the food for her that she can’t get to the fair to eat. I don’t think I went into great detail about this, but Mrs. the Poet is having mobility issues, and “other” issues that prevent her from going to the State Fair of Texas the last few years. I guess one of the “other” issues is a slight touch of vanity or other kind of pride that prevents her from getting pushed in a wheelchair or using a walker with a seat to rest on when she’s too tired to stand anymore. I can see that, but I still think it’s “not smart” to either make yourself suffer, or deny yourself a pleasurable experience, just because of how it makes you look. Of course I have had almost 20 years of looking weak because I needed some help to get around to get over my feelings about it, so I might be a bit of a biased observer.

Anywho, after most of the week of not running, the AC has been going pretty constant today as Summer makes a last stand before giving way to Fall (we hope), so I didn’t feel any compulsion to go out today. Even the promise of a higher budget for coupons didn’t entice me out of the house. I already had a field trip this week to spend the last bit of my gift card and got run all over town because transit was over an hour each way when things didn’t go wrong to make what is a <5 mile trip (seriously, Google maps Bike There directions has it just over 4 miles over mostly quiet streets (except for a mile or so on Naaman School Rd. or N. Garland Ave.) and I could take my bike there in less than 30 minutes if I had a bike I could still ride) that is closer to 20 miles by bus. Things did go a Bit Wrong and the trip home was closer to 3 hours than one, which did nothing for my wanting to go out, and I just did not feel like taking another trip this week, but I suppose I'll have to, to deposit a check tomorrow and make a run by Harbor Freight for a Big Sale.

So I'm going to go put my feet up again and try to get the Wrecked Foot back to a more-normal color (feet aren't supposed to be blue when the rest of you is sweating).

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Just got back from another adventure in overeating

I had money left on my gift card, but not enough to pay for two to eat at Red Robin, and getting Mrs. the Poet out of the house is pretty much a futile effort unless the ride comes right to the front door. So not enough money on the card for two meals and not enough money in the bank account to pay for another Lyft both ways added up to lunch by myself.

Something else it added up to was trying not to waste food, as I was inundated with fry refills and soft drink refills. Depending on how big those glasses were the amount of Diet Coke I swam through went from a half-gallon to a gallon and a half, this was on top of the 750 ml “cup” of coffee I drink every morning, and my kidneys have been singing arias in praise of getting thoroughly flushed out. My bladder on the other hand has been plotting my demise as it strains to provide temporary storage for what the kidneys are so happy to flush through. Then add trying to get home and take care of an errand on the way to the DART tarantella and I left the house at 1300 and got home about 1900, still stuffed from lunch/kidney irrigation. After spending a while on the toilet letting my kidneys flush continuously to return my fluid balance to something close to normal, I sat down to compose this post. Yay, for the post.

Now, I’m pretty much at a stalemate on the design of the Sprint-T with no budget to buy any more parts or raw stock. Also at the point of freezing the design for the A-MOD SCCA racer unless someone gives me a different engine. I have too much time to think about things and not enough money to do things. That is a dangerous combination, because eventually I turn into Wile E. Coyote pursuing the Road Runner. Or as I called it over on the Driveway Engineer page on FB I go into Mad Scientist Mode. And going into Mad Scientist Mode is doubleplus ungood. And how about that, the spell check doesn’t recognize Newspeak spelling.

Well, I’m tired and I still have stuff to do on the computer and the Internet, so this is time to put this to bed.

Yesterday was Fair Day

I did a food tour of the State Fair Of Texas yesterday, until I ran out of coupons. I took some pictures but not of everything. Anyway, this was lunch.
Corn fritters and jalapeño creamed corn

$1 root beer 12 oz

I also had a $4 lemonade that I think was 16 oz, and a $1 bottle of water. I forgot to take pictures of them.

This I wanted to stuff into my bag and take home for the Sprint-T, but it didn’t fit through the top of the bag. This is about as far as they could push the rules that required injection at the throttle body, and you can just barely see the coil pack on the front of the engine if you follow the plug wires back to the front. The ECU is mounted to the back of the engine stand but would be on the top of the dashboard under the windshield in the car. The throttle body is a standard Holley part that NASCAR requires, that Holly uses for their EFI conversion kits, because it worked and was cheaper that way.
TRD Cup series engine with manifold runner injection and individual coils for each plug mounted to the front of the engine
And in this picture the coil pack is clearly visible along with the tiny alternator and the Holly EFI throttle body.
Good view of the front of the TRD engine

Something I noticed at the back of the engine was the bellhousing pattern appeared to be the same as the SBC and LS engines. I guess this was to make it easier to use available parts to connect the engine to the rest of the drivetrain.

Something else I saw at the Ford display was they had various sizes of SUVs, pickup rucks, and some Mustangs, and that was it, no actual passenger cars other than the Mustang. Their brochure listed another car, the Fusion, as available in 2020, but I saw nary a one in the display. Now there were some car-sized SUVs on display, basically full-size station wagons that didn’t have a sedan counterpart, some smaller and some bigger than the 1971 LTD wagon the family bought when we got back from when we were stationed in Africa.

And I have been transferring pictures from my phone to my computer to my blog media file for hours, and I’m ready to quit now.

When it’s day but your body says it’s time to sleep

Basically I’m time-shifted about 12 hours now, I fall asleep at noon and wake up about 1830-1900 just in time for dinner for breakfast. Then I do stuff for a while so that I’m spending at least a little quality time with my wife before she goes to bed and I go to work, even when I don’t have any actual “work” pending. Last night I did some work on the cats’ water dish/fountain so that the water in the pool area was also filtered. As configured from the factory the water is picked up from the back pool and forced through the filter to the top of the tower where it trickles back down the front of the tower and immediately goes into the back pool. This leaves all the dirty water untouched in the front pool which is where the cats have to drink from, only they won’t because it’s a little nasty and never gets cleaned.

So, what I’m doing is redirecting the water from the filter out into the front pool in order to set up a current that takes the water in the front pool into the filter so it all gets cleaned. Or at least mostly cleaned. I doubt I can configure the fountain to clean all the water but I’m hopeful that this will get it clean enough that the cats will stop drinking out of the dishwater and toilet, both of which disturb the person who bought the expensive cat fountain because he (not me) spent a hefty sum to buy the fountain only to have the cats turn up their noses at it after a few days of operation. The modification will have the negative side effect of making a splashy noise as the water spills out into the front pool from a height (if you can call less than 6″ a “height”) instead of clinging to the front of the filter tower and going right back into the rear pool and filters.

And since I have to wait several hours for this water-based adhesive to dry before I run water over it, and because today is Seniors Free day (and not Seniors in HS) and I have passed as a senior citizen for almost21 years now, I’m going to go to the fair and have some badunhealthy fried food and see stuff, and then come back and see how the cat fountain works. I’m hoping just getting the water away from the intake for the filter gets enough of the front pool cleaned out and I don’t have to build the extension that dumps the water at the far end of the front pool and sets up a current to get all of the front pool through the filter, but I’m prepared to do the full thing and build the extension that gets the clean water all the way to the front of the fountain.

See you after the Fair!

Halloween is a full month now

Happy Halloween month which explains why stores were advertising candy back in August.

And that’s all I had to say today

Why do they continue this useless killing?

And this petition recently came out Badger cull petition that shows that despite protests and a flashy video (above) that even included guitar riffs officially from Queen guitarist Brian May there has been no evidence that even suggests the culls have been effective at their stated objective of stopping Bovine TB, with areas getting culls having no lower level of TB infections than areas without culls.

Now, I’m not a tree-hugger, and I know that unless I want to be ripped to shreds I should avoid hugging badgers, but still killing thousands of animals to no more effect than providing a momentary kill thrill to the hunters hired to shoot them is a total waste of money. And wasting money hurts my Scots/Jewish soul, from both sides. So sign the petition, and maybe this time something will come from it, because the one attached to the video in 2013 sure didn’t do Jacques Schitt about it the next year.

Well as they say that’s my two pence on the subject.

Not much interesting going on

Still fighting to get my sleep schedule diurnal, but I managed to time shift enough to get a massage yesterday morning. The tech spent the entire session working on my back, neck and glutes, but I was able to turn my head most of the way to the right when she finished.

The interesting part happened on the way home when an Asian couple offered me water at the bus stop, and also to the other person waiting there in a wheelchair. I already had two small bottles of water from the massage place because I get a really dry throat during a massage, especially if I spend a full hour laying face-down.

When I got home I had a bite, then did the grocery list on my phone with my loyalty app, trying to not fall asleep and not having much success at it. About 1700 I finally gave in and toddled off to bed and woke up at about 2230, which is almost like sleeping at night, right?

I thought I might have an engine for the A-MOD car yesterday, but I wasn’t able to arrange transport for the donor vehicle, so I was forced to pass it up. It was a 250cc V-Twin with DOHC and 4 valves per cylinder, what used to be considered pretty racy stuff back in the day but is just a puttin’ around engine on a city bike today. It was rated at 28 HP, which was also a pretty racy number back in the day, being more than 100 HP per liter normally aspirated, coming in at 112 BHP/liter. But since I didn’t have any way to get it home, I ain’t got it.

Well I have to be awake this afternoon when we go grocery shopping, so this is a good spot to wrap this puppy up and put it to bed, woof.

After too much partying I’m (mostly) back

It’s a good thing I don’t have a birthday every weekend, because I would never get anything done. Many beers were consumed, much meat and cheese was consumed, and there was also pie and ice cream destroyed. I’m way over my daily average on caloric consumption (dinner yesterday alone was nearly 2000 calories when appetizers and beverages were included) and probably should take a day or two off from eating just to burn off some of those excess calories.

There was a pre-party on Saturday, I forgot what we had, just that there was too much of it, and I had a Sam Adams Oktoberfest to drink and a Shiner Oktoberfest with lunch, then on my actual birthday on Sunday we had 3 meat pizza and cherry pie with ice cream, and I think I had a Sam Adams to go with the pizza because there is nothing that pairs up with pizza like beer. Yesterday we went to Red Robin to get my free burger and ice cream. I had the Royal Red Robin with the egg on top and the short tower of onion rings for my appetizer, and a local beer by Lakewood Brewing that they modestly call their lager. The sandwich was messy and good, the onion rings were good when they cooled off enough to be eaten, and the only disappointment was the sundae was made with the hot fudge laying on the bottom of the parfait glass instead of between the ice cream and the whipped cream, but they did at least remember to put the cherry on top😁.

I got some money for my birthday so I’m going to get my toes done this week and a massage, too.

And I haven’t stopped thinking about and researching the Sprint-T, I got in touch with Hoosier about the best tires for when I’m running SCCA events, and what they came up with was the catalog number 09120 24″ tall 11″ wide with a very sticky rubber compound, originally made for the left front on pavement sprint cars and supermodified racers where physics dictates that there isn’t a lot of normal force when the tire is under side load because it is on the lighter end of the car and also the side that gets unloaded by weight transfer when turning. It fits a less expensive 15″ x 10″ wheel compared to the 17″ X 10″ wheel I need to run for the sanctioning body that requires a 300 treadwear tire because I couldn’t find a 300 TW performance tire for a 15″ rim that was wide enough to hook 400 HP in a 2000 pound car, the widest 15″ 300 TW performance tire I could find was a 205/50-15, most were 195/50-15. It was strange because I could find 100 TW tires all the way up to 275mm, but the 200 stopped at 245/40 and the 300 stopped 205mm, but the 400 and above went all the way up to 295mm.

Now when I look in 17″ rims I find all kinds of nice wide tires with 300 TW ratings and above and very high ratings for dry traction and handling. Not quite as impressive ultimate grip levels as the 200 TW tires in the same sizes, but still lightyears ahead of what was available a few years back when I started this process. The downside of running 17″ rims is the increased inertia because the diameter is 2″ more than it would be in a 15″ rim. The annoying part is this design procedure has become a moving target, about the time I settle on a tire it either goes out of production or gets changed to a lower treadwear rating. I think I need to just build the car and decide what tires to use depending on what’s available when it gets done.

And speaking of done, I think it’s time to stick a fork in this one.

Yesterday was miserable

But before that, a report on Thursday’s travels.

They didn’t start so good, because right after I bought a PM Pass for the bus, on my phone, my phone locked up completely so that I couldn’t even check time. This usually happens when I get a system conflict between two apps. But I got super lucky and every bus had a defective farebox so the driver didn’t even bother checking my phone or if I had a ticket.

I believe I have mentioned that I have tinnitus due to the wreck, that it’s annoying, and that it interferes with hearing what people are saying, and how Mrs. the Poet is always complaining that I need a hearing aid and I reply she needs to stop mumbling so I can understand what she’s saying. Well I went for a hearing aid test Thursday afternoon to see if in fact I do need to get a hearing aid. Well what the test revealed was that I have done a remarkable job in preserving my hearing in spite of shooting machine guns and heavy weapons in the Army with almost perfect hearing below 4KHz and a drop off that showed exactly how loud my tinnitus is because that’s the lowest frequency of the tones in my tinnitus except when it turns into a roaring blast of pink noise for a few seconds and then goes away for a bit, but anyway I had to let the test tones get louder than the ringing in my ears before I could tell they were test tones. And I have about 20 dB of hearing loss at 4KHz and above because of that. The test also showed that when I’m alert and listening hard I can pick out speech pretty well from background noise, but if I let my concentration lapse I lose the thread completely. Also I have difficulty in picking out unvoiced consonants like the difference between nice and knife, I’m about 50-50 in guesses. I’m a little better in actual conversation because I know nobody is going to be stabbed with a nice, and that people are not knife with others, so I can use context to figure out missing words when I can’t depend on my ears.

Then I went to spend some coupons at the local Burger King for dinner. We got the two Jr. Whoppers and two fries (no drinks) and an order of Chicken Fries and a large fry all for about $7.50 with tax, and had what drinks we already had at home to save carting fountain drinks home on the bus. I managed to stay awake until about 2300 when I had to rest my neck and back and passed out until Mrs. the Poet came to bed when I should have taken my bedtime meds before going back to sleep, but I was stupid so I didn’t and was barely asleep and not getting much rest until 0900 when I decided I needed to take my bedtime meds and slept until 1730. So I’m going to be up all day again today and sleep about 2300 tonight.

But before that I have grocery shopping to do this afternoon and a race to watch tonight. And I have to give my back and neck a chance to rest now, but I’m not taking bedtime meds so I won’t sleep. And in case you are curious, my bedtime meds are 1 or 2 200mg Ibuprofen and 1 or 2 20 mg diphenhydramine to reduce my pain and let my brain shut down and sleep. I adjust depending on how bad I hurt and how much the brain is racing after I decide to shut down for the night.

Doing another sleep deprivation day

I have to be up and outta here by noon, and I was awake until almost 0900 yesterday and slept until almost 1600. So I figured that since backing up my body clock wasn’t working, maybe running it forward would get the job done. Seriously, I have done this thousands of times, twice a week when I was working Compressed D shift at TI, way back in the backside of the 20th Century. I would stay up all night the day before I went back to work on Friday and get to sleep about 0800 after all the kids left for school and get a few hours before I had to get ready for the day at night. Then I would stay up all day on Monday so I would sleep that night, and be on a diurnal sleep schedule for the rest of the week.

Well this is pretty much the same as Mondays back then, I’m staying up all day to reset, and because I have things to do during the day. Today I’m going to get my hearing tested to see if my problems are all strictly due to tinnitus, or if I also have a hearing loss to blame some of it on. Last time I was tested it was all on the tinnitus, but that was a long time ago and it’s possible that some deterioration could be from actual hearing loss. Or if the tinnitus has gotten so bad I need hearing amplification anyway, even though any hearing loss I have is minimal like last time. And I need to go to the bank to deposit some checks.

And I need to be getting ready now so this seems like a good spot to quit.