Tag Archives: can’t sleep trees will kill me

Allergies are kicking everyone’s butts here

I’m up way early because I ended up going to bed at 1930 and waking up about 0200 ±. Mrs. the Poet is also having an allergy attack that made her face swell until she couldn’t see past her swollen cheeks and it was painful to her eyes. That’s why I was so off on going to bed, I had to stay up to get her to the doctor, then I took a nap from 1200 to about 1600 to go grocery shopping, then fell asleep during the Cup race last night. I managed to last until the end of the first stage, but was too zonked to last any longer so I went to bed early, or late depending on your time orientation. My normal “day” I get to bed about 0600 and get up about 1200-1400 depending on if I have anything to do that day that requires getting up before noon.

And I was looking at the dyno charts for the various engines that can be built from that 4.2″ bore LS block and I think the best one for the Sprint-T is the 4.2″ bore with the 4″ stroke. Compared with the 3.26″ stroke engine with the same cam the difference in torque below 5000 RPM where the Sprint-T will spend most of a lap around an autocross course is enormous. Which proves the adage “There’s no replacement for displacement”. And with a good flowing head I can spin up past 6500 RPM without losing power. So when I’m bucks up I’m making the 443 cubic inch LS with the LS7 heads that maybe are ported to breathe at 7K RPM.

In a few hours we play Shadowrun again if the GM has replenished his supply of medications that allow him to function, but we won’t know until time to play.

And speaking of “functioning” I need to take another nap.

Brief but seriously painful allergy (or something) attack

First of all because of a sliding sleep schedule I was basically out of it except to roll over from 0930 to 1830, then it was too painful to move until 2200, but I got up and got some coffee to drink and took my meds. Then about 0100 I started to feel like eating the plate of dinner Mrs. the Poet prepared. That’s after I consumed about half of the volume of my coffee cup (my cup holds about 800 ml). I’m still getting some joint pain, but greatly reduced from what I was experiencing when I woke up. What was also a problem is I had a case of allergy eyes obstructing my vision, for the first hour or so after I woke up. That has also reduced significantly.

I have been reading an author new to me, and because it’s a female name writing porn (yes, I read text porn, so sue me) I have come to the conclusion the author is a man (or penis owning person). The reason I mention this is because every encounter is from the penis-owning character’s point of view, even if that person wasn’t born with a penis. And I started thinking about how I would write those scenes from the point of view of the other characters who don’t have penises, and I don’t have a clue about how to do that, because I lack the experiences needed to write from that point of view on several levels. All the heterosexual porn I read is written by men, and most of the lesbian porn I read is also probably written by men, for men. It just has the feel of how males see lesbians, including the conquering of one partner by the more dominant one. The porn I know was written by a female author because she gave it to me with her name on it had less conquering and more cooperation. It was very hot, but different, because the women were more into making each other feel good, and also because it described the physicality of sex very differently from people who don’t experience penetration as a normal part of their sexuality. But still this brought home how bad I am at putting myself in another person’s shoes, figuratively.

Also I finally got some chips to let me experience a brand of guacamole that was not familiar to me. We had a coupon for Wholly Guacamole brand and we also bought a brand of chip that we see locally that we didn’t see in either NY or TN, Calidad. I have been scarfing down the chips for years, but Wholly Guacamole was new to me. I don’t buy guac all that often and mostly I get the deli guac from my local grocery, which isn’t bad. I mean it’s nothing special but it isn’t bad. Now I had some guac years ago that was awful, but that was more than 45 years ago in Logan UT. Wholly Guacamole was pretty good. I’m not sure it’s enough better than the deli guac to justify the price difference, but it is better.

And veering on another tangent, I watched a video from Engine Masters that basically proved that for an LS engine at low loads it doesn’t matter what you put in the tank as long as it is gasoline. The combustion chamber in LS heads is highly octane tolerant, you can drive around on an optimized tune for 87 regular and it works The Same, it falls into the range of run-to-run variation on the dyno used as 91, 110, 116, so long as you get the tune right. But if you need that last little bit of power E85 is where you go for the LS engine, which validates my decision to get to and from the races on 87 and race on E85.

And, that’s about all I have to say as I can feel the pollen levels starting to rise now that the sun is up and things are getting uncomfortable again.

I made a statement in a previous post that needed more facts, and trees are continuing to kick my butt

I made the statement yesterday that DoD in the Gen IV LS engines was “bad”. I stand behind this statement but clarification is needed.

Most of the LS architecture engine family prior to Displacement on Demand had expected lifespans of about a quarter of a million miles (about 430,000 km). The problem is the components used to implement DoD are not as reliable as the rest of the engine and have the tendency to destroy the rest of the engine when they fail, at the worst, or simply render the engine inoperable at best.How to diagnose DoD problems, DISPLACEMENT ON DEMAND – DOD, Repair Cost and Return on Investment. Chevy Tahoe Collapsed Lifter and that was just the first two videos on the search results that extended for multiple pages.

So even if cam or lifter damage is present since I’m converting the engine to fixed displacement anyway, but I still want to retain the VVT, all I have to do is buy the DoD delete kit and new lifters (sold as LS7 lifters on Amazon and eBay) and a VVT compatible cam for a larger engine than I have and I have improved performance over stock at minimal costs. Basically since I have to buy the cam and lifters as part of the repair anyway, the costs of buying the delete kit are the only cost of the delete, but I have to have the engine in hand before I do this because some engines had DoD delete from the factory, and some didn’t have VVT even though they are Gen IV engines. I have to make sure I get VVT, but that is a simple visual inspection before purchase as even though it’s an internal engine part the control hydraulics are part of the timing cover and visible at a glance.

Now, on the other thing, I’m still having allergy problems. I was supposed to go get my toes done and hair cut, but my allergies just made me sleep later than usual. I woke up about 1530 instead of my “normal” 1400, and my mind never revved up to cruising RPM before the venues were closed for the day. I wasn’t fully functional until after 2000 which is about the closing time for the nail place, and 2 hours after the barbershop closes.

And to end the post here’s a link to a video of stupid fun My Best Burnout EVER Ended With a Huge Methanol Fire… *WAR BIRD Extra Spicy Edition* as you can see from the video the friction from the spinning tires has polished the surface to a high gloss. That’s amazing, concrete polished by spinning tires. AFAIK concrete polishing is usually done when slightly soggy.

Allergies and PTSD kept me from having the energy to write

Short post to explain the sudden lack of posts. The headline pretty much explains everything, but for the record trees and grass have been been having an orgy and my head is caught in the cross-fire. I can breathe, but at the cost of not having energy to do much else beyond that. Part of that is allergies, part of that is the deep funk I fell into after Chauvin was convicted of the murder we all watched repeatedly on TV and social media most of last year after every protest against a cop killing a BIPOC which seemed like every other day. I mean nonchalantly kneeling on the neck of a Black man with his hands in his pockets like this was a normal thing for him to be doing, murdering a Black man in the street with dozens of people filming it and recording the sounds of it as Floyd’s life left his body.

I get that he is going to prison and unless he spends the rest of his life in solitary the rest of his life will be short and violent. But this still does not feel like a victory. The closest thing I can compare it to was that one hill in Vietnam we “won” like 3 times, only to abandon it and the VC were back on it firing on our troops in a couple of weeks at most. To “win” this one we have to eliminate White Supremacists from all branches and forms of LEO and make ever being a part of any racist organization disqualifying for having a firearm and from working for law enforcement. We not only have to “take the hill” of each individual LEO who kills a BIPOC, we have to “win the war” against White Supremacy. And that looks like a very long and costly battle.

I have had PTSD longer than PTSD existed as a diagnosis, and for most of my life it has been untreated, even after I was diagnosed. It is now known that untreated PTSD results in depression that is extremely hard to treat, because after a while depression becomes less like a mental problem and more like a personality trait. It burrows down into your soul, and takes up permanent residence there. And while I can live with it like this since I don’t seem to have the option of suicide, I would prefer to be actually happy sometimes, instead of just “almost not depressed” which is what passes for “happiness” for me. And to understand what depression as a personality trait looks like, I present Eeyore. Eeyore is so depressed suicide is too much of a bother because it will put others out cleaning up the mess. I passed that milestone decades ago. And the recent circus about the White Supremacist who murdered a man with his hands in his pockets did my depression no favors. I’m still not in any way suicidal because I don’t want to make anyone have to clean up the mess. And I still haven’t forgotten what may have been the hallucination of getting put inside a body bag, so suicide is right out.

Allergies still kicking my butt

And something is making my joints hurt also. My hypothesis is I’m getting some kind of inflammation from the allergies and that is having a negative effect on the joints that are bothering me. If so, this is another fine mess, to quote Oliver Hardy.

If you clicked the link to the parts catalog I posted day before yesterday you might have noticed something missing, prices. This is a common thing for auto parts sold through multiple channels. Depending on volume and how close to the customer the vendor works there were color-coded price sheets issued that had wildly different prices on them. When I was selling auto parts there were sheets for to the warehouse, from the warehouse, to the mechanic, and to the public. Most of what we sold used the to the public sheet, but we did get a steady mechanics business so we had to have that sheet as well. There used to be an industry standard for the color code, and 40 years ago to the public was lemon or goldenrod, to the mechanic was mint or green. I think, like I said this was 40 years ago, and at least one TBI, so I might be hallucinating all this. I also might have the colors mixed up, but anyway, this is why there are no prices in the GM Performance Parts catalog either in print or on the web.

And as an example of my random access mind, when I posted the quote from Oliver Hardy I remembered watching Laurel and Hardy shorts in the mid-60s from a station in Tacoma that was showing the pre-code L&H shorts that had gone into public domain. They were a little racy, but didn’t actually show anything that you couldn’t show on TV of the period, particularly after they had been cut for “commercials”. One scene in particular I remember was the boys sitting in their underwear after having to get cleaned up after something made their outer clothes too dirty to be seen in public, and they were waiting in a woman’s apartment. Their wives showed up with guns and yelled about the boys being “cheating scoundrels” and firing off a shot. Cut to an external shot of men jumping out the windows of the apartment building, by the dozens. Stuff like that from more than 50 years ago I can remember clearly, but more recent things I need to remember?

I was considering changing that massive front axle to drillium, but I’m having trouble figuring out the safest places to apply the tramsmogrifier to change it from steel to drillium so it doesn’t fail in use. Or in this case where do I use the drill and how big a drill do I use? I want enough strength to not bend from severe bumps but weigh as little as possible.

And from just a few minutes ago, I have an appointment for my second Moderna shot on the 12th, at the Dallas Fair Park FEMA vaccination site. I’m 16 days away from 99% immunity!

More tree sex messing up my life and more drooling over parts catalogs

I’m stumbling around half blind because of pollen, mostly tree pollen, and I’m looking at the E-Rod packages in the parts catalog I just got yesterday and just drooling in anticipation, wishing I had the kind of money required to order one of those delivered to my garage.

Actually what I really want is an electric powertrain kit with a choice of packs I could install, like the two gas tanks I planned for the LS powered version of the car. Have a big pack for long trips, and a small light pack for race day. As I see it, the small pack could be part of the big pack and the big pack could recharge the small pack when the big pack is reconnected to the car like between rounds of racing. There are already devices made to do this as part of their design, but usually they make everything equal during charging, rather than balancing capacity during use, but most will work either way.

Not much to say about tree sex and loss of vision, most everybody gets to deal with it to one degree or another. For those lucky ones who haven’t (yet😈) what I experience is a white haze obstructing my vision, similar to how my ringing ears obstruct my hearing. Most days it’s more annoying than an actual problem, but then we get days like today when I get intermittent complete whiteouts and zero visibility. The biggest problem with that is there is literally no warning, I can be walking along minding my own business and all of a sudden I blink and the world turns off-white. Usually a few seconds later and I can mostly see again, but there have been times today that it takes several minutes to see where everything is enough to not hurt myself walking. To call it annoying is severe understatement. The only thing I can do is wait it out until I can clear it up by blinking.

I’m still researching the idea of using a motorcycle brake handle to operate a hydraulic throwout bearing to use on a clutch so I can eke out a little more gas mileage and better power transfer out of tight corners. Google is baffled by the concept and sends me articles on converting motorcycles to hydraulic brakes or clutches, but nothing about what I’m asking. There is a guy who has hand controlled a manual transmission car, but from what I’m getting about this is there is a whole bunch of electronics involved with that, especially the clutch. I just want to know if there is enough fluid volume from the MC brake lever for a hydraulic throwout bearing, and is there enough mechanical advantage to work the clutch if there is enough fluid to get enough travel to operate the mechanism. That is a lot to ask for a master cylinder operated by a hand lever.

And I’m still fighting whiteouts from allergies which is making me angry, and not conducive to writing anything because I don’t think good when I’m angry, as in angry makes the aphasia kick in extra heavy. I can’t think of words and make sentences when I’m angry, which makes writing difficult. So, between not being able to see, and anger-induced aphasia making it hard to write when I can see, I think this is a good time to quit while my laptop is still functional.

It’s that time of year again

Yes, tree bukkake strikes again.😰 Almost feels like a caffeine withdrawal headache at first, then the eyes start watering, and the nose starts itching, and I can’t leave the house without someone with me to keep me from getting arrested for public intoxication, because with the brain damage and the one leg shorter than the other and allergy symptoms, I can’t pass a field sobriety test to save my life. Hence, I have to have a keeper when I leave the house.

At least this time I didn’t have to pry my eyes open with my fingers to be able to see, but judging by the amount of discharge I’m having that will be Monday.

Speaking (writing?) about Monday, that’s when I’ll be watching the dirt Cup race from Bristol. I even got up early to check the pre-race show, but the pits and vendor areas were covered by just under a foot of water (looked like more on my phone, but those Easy-ups could have been collapsed to keep from blowing away). Anywho, the trucks are supposed to roll 1100 CDT and the Cup cars at 1500 CDT. We will see if there is any dirt left to race on. It has been raining pretty hard in the mountains of East Tennessee.

On another front I might have mentioned I got an updated quote for the quick change rear axle with 1° cambered axle tubes and hubs and everything except the spur gears and it is about $2100 plus shipping, which considering the $1900 Ford 9″ housing and centersection doesn’t have the 1° camber option is a screaming deal. Apples to apples, the QC without the camber is less than the Ford, especially when you consider the price to have spare rear end ratios is $1k for the Ford and $55 for the QC. And a complete change of differential oil for the Ford compared to maybe a quart for the QC. Basically except for initial purchase price and a few model-specific consumables, the QC beats the pants off the Ford 9″ as far as economics of operation are concerned. Especially now that junkyard 9″ axles cost as much to make useful as buying new, and that’s not even factoring in the cost of labor.

I was listening to my YTM Supermix while composing the previous para, and checking the lyrics to the ELP song “Jeremy Bender”, and whaddayouknow Ol’ Jer’ is genderfluid, in 1971. If I hadn’t checked the lyrics I never would have known. I mean after you read the lyrics it’s as obvious as the nose on your face, hid for years in an abbey of nuns but had been presenting as male for years, but if you didn’t think about it too hard or if you couldn’t pick the lyrics out of the rest of the music you would have definitely missed it, or dismissed it as just babbling words to make a rhyme. But if they weren’t just babbling, yep, Jer’ was non-binary genderfluid.

Also while looking for the new age version of prog rock I found a group called Elder, who are a worthy heir to the mantle. In some pieces they are a rockier Pink Floyd, or Yes. And B4 you say it, yes I wander around the back catalogs in YTM a lot. I also Google the shit outta things that make me wonder. I mean if Swing music can evolve but still stay the same, why not progressive rock? It can and it did.

And there are about six hours of music in this catalog, I’m going to quit writing and lay down with my phone plugged into the charger and listen until my ears bleed.

The plants have given me a bloody nose

Well for a little while, and my nose still hurts more than 8 hours later. Basically what happened is my nose was itchy and irritated and I kept rubbing it absent-mindedly until it bled, and now my nose is still itchy and irritated, but also sore and bleeds if I touch it wrong. I don’t know what I did to the plants, but I’m sorry so could they please leave me alone? I missed game, and all the races on TV because of my nose and the rest of my face being tender, itchy, and slightly bruised.

And that’s it, nothing new to report here aside from the allergy report.

Ow, just fracking ow!

Oh, one more thing. If someone actually made it my preferred tire for the Sprint-T is 255/25-r15, in both a sticky slick and a 200 treadwear rating treaded street tire. That would cover just about all the series I want to run. In old money that would be a 20-10x15r on a 15″X10″ wheel.

Today was a doubleplus ungood, no-fun kind of day

I knew today was going to be bad when I woke up to a white world because of allergies filming my eyes over again. Eventually I was able to see well enough to get to the bathroom and take care of business. Then I tried to get a “cup” of coffee, which in my insulated cup is right at 800 ml or just shy of a quart. I grabbed the last toaster pastry for breakfast and started to read the news on Twitter. That was a mistake, because there were 2 things fighting for air, Agent Orange saying he’s back on hydroxychloroquine in spite of reports saying it kills more people than it saves, and the report that his administration fired another IG investigating Pompeo over arms deals to the Saudis, and also the IG investigating no-bid contracts from Elaine Chao, wife of #MoscowMitch, and head of the DoT, to companies that had supported Mitch with campaign $$.

Then I started having problems getting my eyes to track together, feeling dizzy, and almost falling out of my chair a couple of times. Mrs. the Poet said my face was red and hot when she checked for fever. I eventually found a person I could talk to over Skype who I talked to and I was also able to find a thermometer, and my temp was an even 98°F which is a touch warm for me but within operating tolerances. After a few hours my vision cleared up and my dizziness went away, but my face remained red and hot. We, the doc and I decided I had the unfortunate combination of allergies and over-exuberant exfoliation from yesterday that combined to make it look like I was really sick when I was just having a bad grass allergy day. The double vision was probably clogged sinuses, the dizzy was the double vision caused motion sickness, and the hot, red face was irritation from trying too hard when I was stripping the dead skin cells from my cheeks and forehead yesterday. I stayed sat down until I was sure of my balance and took an allergy pill, after which I started feeling much better.

Now the fun thing is I wasn’t able to make that trip to the hardware today, which means I get to try again tomorrow. Yay? (Tom Slick unenthused crowd noises) I’m out of my sleep meds, I also need to make that trip to the hardware to get the screws and door bumpers, I have the battery for the sawzall on the charger so I can cut the pieces for the radiator mockup. I tried it earlier, but there was no charge in the battery so I didn’t even get one cut finished on the first 2 by 4. I barely got started before the battery died. So battery is on the charger.

And I cracked the first bottle of kefir of the 4, and I had to google what this is supposed to taste like because I honestly thought it had gone bad and that’s why it was given to me, but it’s supposed to taste like a vinegar smoothie. I have had things much worse (see Natto on google), so I can learn to live with this. TBH it is not much worse than the lemon-lime yogurt I was eating a while ago. It just takes being prepared for the taste. I already knew what the various citrus flavors were like but this was new.

And this seems like a good place to stop…

Not feeling good today

I did several days in a row with 2-3 miles walked with allergies and now my back is complaining, not loudly, but making its presence known. This is my notice to take a break and not overdo things. Also after several days of good behavior the “m” key on the keyboard is acting cranky again, and Google keeps sending me notices that my OS is no longer supported.

Now this can be dealt with in many ways. I can buy a new computer (ha, ha), I can get the keyboard fixed and install Linux, I can install Linux on my Dad’s old computer after I drag it out of the box it has been stuck in since 2012. And one of my friends might have an old laptop they can give me. First I need to call and find out how much getting the keyboard fixed will cost, then work from there.

On the Sprint-T I have been contemplating a frame revision that would add maybe 40 pounds but provide a major increase in torsional stiffness. It isn’t as pretty now, but it will be much more tunable for handling. Basically what I did was make sure all the possible load paths were continuous and triangulated in all 3 dimensions and clear the body. It was that last requirement that has been the monkey wrench in the works, as the body is 34″ wide underneath and 45″ wide at the top and there has to be a structural member to meet the mounts underneath or the body would have not crashworthiness. That’s not the problem by itself, the problem is the diagonal from the top of the rear roll hoop to the bottom of the front roll hoop. Now I thought I had this solved a while back, but when I traced the load paths I found it went all wonky at the front roll hoop. The loads went from in line to bending around the front hoop because of having to have a member under the body and the diagonal snake around the bowed-out sides because there is no straight line from the top of the rear hoop to the bottom of the rear hoop. Interestingly enough, there is straight line access from the top of the rear hoop to the middle of the front hoop, and back to the bottom of the rear hoop, but that places bending loads on the front hoop unless there is a corresponding member from the front suspension support to the front hoop. And that is what increases the weight so much, about 8 additional members about 50″ long each weigh 30 pounds total plus the gussets at each intersection add about 8-9 ounces each end. If I could reduce the size of the structural members any more without worry about damage from people leaning or climbing on the car I could make it lighter, but I have to use the frame as a ladder to get in through the top of the cage.

While I have been writing about fixing the mistakes in my frame I had a show about engineering mistakes and fixing them on the Science Channel on the Tee Vee. Some of those mistakes cost hundreds of millions of dollars to fix, some couldn’t be fixed for any amount of money. I’m just glad I’m finding my mistakes before I spend money building unusable junk.