Tag Archives: Happy Father’s Day

We did Father’s Day early

Because my LEO son-in-law had to work today we did the family gathering Saturday, including a trip to a local sandwich place for those really big subs and sandwiches. I had a Meatball Parmesan while Mrs. the Poet had an Italian Sub that was basically a mountain of various Italian sausages and cheeses in a sub bun, that she ate all she could for lunch and then we had the rest for dinner. Yes, I had half of what was left over from Mrs. the Poet’s lunch and some soup, and we had enough. Did I mention those were huge sandwiches?

My gift from my daughter was a bunch of snack foods from different countries, because I basically eat anything and like most of it. Even as a little boy I enjoyed strange flavors and weird foods. I brought home some bacon-flavored pretzel sticks and some cheese-flavored things that weren’t crunchy or chewy but had a texture kind of in-between, both from Poland. We all finished off the really weird stuff before we started for home.

My son said he was going to give me my present from him today after we finish grocery shopping. I’m hoping for a BBQ Bacon Whataburger, but anything will be appreciated. After all I already bought what I really wanted, a shaver and a shower curtain to make Mrs. the Poet happy, everything else is just figurative gravy on top. The shift handle mentioned in an earlier post was just how I spent my contest winnings.

Speaking of car parts I’m still thinking about that LS powered A/MOD car. The lightest chassis would be the tub and superstructure idea I mentioned a few days ago, but that has the disadvantage of not having the physical space for the lightest suspension. Not that using independent suspension is all that much heavier, but it is at least an order of magnitude more complicated while being a disadvantage at the rear. A solid rear axle has the advantage of using the engine torque to plant the rear tires in reaction to acceleration. The Sprint-T uses a torque arm to do this, but the LS A/MOD car doesn’t have the space behind the driver to run the links to locate a rear axle to do take advantage of this. Well the lack of space is to the left of the driver, because there’s plenty of room for the links to the right of the engine, but the driver hangs further to the left than the engine/transmission does to the right because they are less wide, and weigh more than twice as much as the driver. I guess I could do the same thing I did with the driver going slightly under the engine and let the links run in the space next to the driver’s butt and under his armpit and let the driver overhang a bunch of structure to the left. One thing I’m doing with the LS A/MOD is breaking my rule against putting any structure lower than the wheel rims. The driver’s butt will be lower than the wheel rims, along with large portions of the tub and engine (inside the tub with the driver). Woo look at me being a rebel against my own rules! Seriously, the driver will be about 1″ above the track on the other side of a thin sheet metal tub. I’m thinking about building the seating space as a structural part, then using one of those seat-molding kits to make it semi-comfortable for the driver. For the time spent in the car during a race comfort is a lower priority than it would be for other kinds of race cars where the driver has to maintain concentration for maybe 5 or 6 hours. A/MOD cars spend at most 15 minutes on course for a weekend event, maybe 8 or 9 for a one-day event, not counting time spent waiting in line to start a run. For a one day Goodguys event the driver spends 15 minutes inside the car for the whole event if they have 3 runs or maybe a bit longer if there is a significant drive between the pits and the course.

And there is a race today in Talladega that I don’t want to miss, so I’ll see y’all later.


Just me and the cats again

Mrs. the Poet is taking her annual summer trip away from TX heat and humidity to be with her relatives in Upstate NY. This means a month or so of only eating what I can prepare or scrounge, and the cats having to stay out until I get up instead of when Mrs. the Poet gets up. This morning I had leftover cinnamon rolls that either had to be eaten or thrown away by the end of the week, for breakfast. I usually have PopTarts because until the coffee kicks in that’s pretty much as good as I can do.

Now there are good things about her vacation. I get better sleep because there’s nobody doing laundry or having one-sided conversations with the cats before noon. I get to have braunschweiger sandwiches for lunch, that I can’t have usually because Mrs. the Poet can’t stand the smell of any of the liver sausages. I get as much ramen as I want, and I can mix in the canned veggies as I cook the noodles (drain the veggies into the measuring cup and add water to bring to the 2 cups/package needed to cook the noodles, then dump the liquid and veggies on the noodles and heat it all at once). Five minutes to a filling meal with healthy veggies and flavor. Mrs. the Poet does not like this in spite of how little it costs to make.

On other fronts I’m getting new earbuds to replace the ones I got 2 phones ago that lost the left channel a few weeks back. It just got quieter and quieter, and when I checked it that side was full of something pale and flaky that locked up the driver. I have no idea what it was because I keep my ears very clean. It still makes noise, but if you turn up the volume enough to hear the left side you’ll blast your eardrum out on the right side. So new earbuds, actually two sets so I have different ones for watching YouTube videos on the computer without disturbing Mrs. the Poet. Using the same ones all the time may have contributed to their demise.

And for the blog I also got a zoom lens for my cell phone camera, supposedly a nice solid one that will last for several phones. You might have read previous posts where I note that because of the wide-angle lens used on most cell phone cameras it was impossible to scale anything in a picture even with a tape measure right in front of the object in the picture. This is called a parallax error and requires extensive technical knowledge of the lens to correct for, or you could just slap a zoom lens on and eliminate about 90% of the error. I’m buying a zoom lens. With the Amazon gift card I got for Father’s Day.

The hone is here, and I’m exhausted

I’m watching the 24 Hours of Le Mans since shortly after the start at 0700, when I couldn’t get to sleep until after 0530. I keep falling asleep and faceplanting in the keyboard. And I just got back from my Father’s Day dinner at the Texas Roadhouse, where I had a Bacon Cheeseburger that must have weighed at least a pound total, 1020 Calories plus 400 Calories of steak fries. So besides being tired I’m dealing with a Food Coma.

So now Imma go have another lie-down. I get my present tomorrow.

My Father’s day was a week early, the rest of you have a great day.

My kids took me out for seafood at Pappadeaux last Saturday and I did pretty good in the presents department. I was going to brag last Sunday but Some Asshole decided to shoot up a gay club in Orlando and I really wasn’t in the mood any more.

That’s a 24-oz capacity insulated cup, that will keep warm coffee drinkable for at least 6 hours, and iced drinks iced for more than 8 hours (I can’t say exactly how much more, but there was ice left in the cup when my drink was done after 8 hours). The background is a limited edition ST:TOS T-shirt commemorating the Mirror, Mirror episode. The present I treasure the most is the 4-star Dragonball plushie. My son tells me the package said it was a keychain, but none of the pants pockets I have will hold it by itself, much less with keys on it.

This makes the third Father’s Day since my father died in 2012. I finally managed to process he’s not here and I’m starting to miss him. Dad and I were never close, but we would talk every so often. One of those times was when tragedies like Orlando would happen and we would try to make some sense of it together. Now I have to try to make sense out of the senseless on my own.

And there is racing on the idiot box (all night long) so I’m cutting this one short now. Y’all have a good time Sunday.

PSA, Opus

Happy Father’s Day on a Wreck-Free Sunday

Happy day to all you (other) fathers and dads out there. I will be going out to have a late lunch/early dinner with the kids who still remain in this country after I do the blog, so I will probably be cutting this short.

On the Wide 5 to early Ford spindle adaptor, I did some preliminary stress calculations and the only Al alloy that would not fail in use after a couple of years costs like $200 each for a hunk of billet big enough to use for the adaptor, or I can change the design so that instead of being structural the adaptor just fills space between the bearings in the Wide 5 hub and the Ford spindle and the cost of the billets goes down to $50 for the pair or $25 each. That’s a huge cost saving at a weight increase of about 2 ounces or just over 0.1 pounds. So, the inside diameter of the new design adaptor goes from the OD of the grease seal run with a step to the ID of the Ford inner bearing (1.189″) that runs cylindrical to the shoulder for the Ford outer bearing (about 3″ in length) then a step down to the ID of the Ford outer bearing (0.75″) that runs two threads up the threaded area of the Ford spindle (another 1″ for a total of 4″ from the inner bearing shoulder) and goes straight out to the size of the spindle washer on the spindle nut kit, then it tapers out to the outside of the outside bearing of the Wide 5 hub next to the washer and lock nut on the adaptor (4.6″ from the inner bearing shoulder) then straight out to the end of the adaptor at 0.250″ wall thickness so it doesn’t fail at the threads (1.375″ ID). I have been looking at other Wide 5 spindles on the market and not all of them are the nearly 7″ from spindle face to the end of the threads that the initial drawing I looked at implied. The original design was from the late 1930s/early ’40s and used double locknuts to retain the bearings on the spindle, while modern usage is to use a single nut that locks to a tabbed washer via machine screws in the outer face of the nut. So on these hubs from the inside out you got outer bearing, then a tabbed washer to keep any torques from the bearing trying to undo the spindle nut, then the spindle nut, then another tabbed washer with slots that small screws go through that screw into the spindle nut to prevent the spindle nut from coming loose. The older design was bearing, tabbed washer, spindle nut, tabbed washer, second spindle nut, then enough clean threads so that you got a good accurate torque value on that second nut. Now I only have to leave enough threads that the one nut has a good torque value. So shorter adaptor and I made up the couple of ounces I added by reducing the ID of the adaptor so that it only acts as a spacer rather than a structural member. I win (for some values of “win”).

On the way to the Solstice Service last night I had a stitch let loose from my neck rather suddenly, as in it felt like I had been hit on the back of my neck and I felt/heard a “thunk” when it let go. Now that I have had some sleep I have a smidge more range of motion in my neck and a tiny bit less discomfort at the end of my range of motion than I did before the stitch let loose. Still that was a disconcerting way for a stitch to go away. It was doubly so as I was crossing the street when it let go.

And my ride to Father’s Day dinner will be here shortly, so I have to quit running on at the keyboard now.

PSA, Opus the dad Poet

Having a real good Father’s Day and the invention of Sportball on a Wreck-Free Sunday

My kids took me out for dinner last night for Father’s Day, and we went to the same place we went to for Mother’s Day. This time I had that burrito with the jalapeño cream gravy. Basically I got a breakfast burrito the size of my grandson’s head stuffed with scrambled eggs and 3 different kinds of meat (at least, there might have been 4 because there were a couple of pieces of “ham” that were suspiciously like Canadian Bacon) and a few chunks of potato with a big mound of home fries on the other side of the plate. Yumm.

Now, Sportball™. Mrs. the Poet and I were bystanders to a conversation about the NBA Finals that was almost completely incomprehensible to us. So I got to thinking about a game that would be as hard to follow as cricket, but even more confusing. What I came up with is Sportball™, a combination of cricket and team handball with a touch of hockey and soccer. The field for Sportball™ is 200 meters long divided into two halves. There are two bases located on the centerline of the field 50 meters apart or 25 meters from the half line, and a goal with a 1 by two meter opening and two meters deep 5 meters behind the base on each side. The field is 50 meters wide.

There is a lot going on during a game of Sportball™, with 11 players to a team and two balls in play at all times. The players are two bats, a goalie, a pitcher, two guards, two forwards, and three fielders. All players except the bats remain on their side of the field, the bats run back and forth between the bases. As I wrote earlier, there are two balls in play all the time, the pitcher, bats, and fielders play with a white ball while everyone else uses a florescent orange ball. There are two ways to score, when a bat runs from his base to the opposite base and back without being out that is a run which is worth one point. When the orange or white ball goes into a goal that scores a point for the team that was not defending that goal. Meaning it is entirely possible to score a goal against your own team, and also possible for the bat to get the ball into the opposing goal and score a point without leaving his base. The game goes until one team scores a total of 21 points combined runs and goals.

The game starts with one team getting possession of both balls by winning a coin toss. The pitcher throws the white ball at the goal of the opposing team which starts play. The orange ball is tossed or kicked between the guards and forwards behind the half line on their side of the field, trying to set up a clear throw at the goal on the other side of the field. Getting the ball over the goal line inside the goal results in a point and teams switching sides of the field, no matter which color of ball scores. If the bat hits the ball and it lands inside the playing field he gets to run to the opposing base and wait for the other bat to knock him home for a point. If the ball goes out the sides of the field the bat is out and the other bat gets to have a shot at the white ball. If the ball is caught on the fly by anyone on the opposing team the bat is out. If the other bat is on base either of those times then he has to return to the home base without scoring a point. Now if the bat hits the ball out the rear line of the field then that is an automatic run and the other bat gets up to hit, scoring a point if he was on base at the time.

The fun part is that there are two balls in play and the orange ball might come through the goal area at any time, and that the white ball changes sides just about every time it gets thrown. The main reason the goal is set so far back from the base is so the goalie doesn’t get hit by the bat, trying to hit the white ball. The bat is allowed to hit the orange ball, but all that does is just keep the orange ball out of his goal unless the bat hits the orange ball into either goal. If the orange ball goes out of bounds then the team that touches the ball last loses possession of the ball. There are only three fouls in Sportball™, crossing the half line to the opponent’s side of the field; the fielders, or pitcher touching the orange ball; and the bat on base interfering with the orange ball in front of the goal. The bat on base is allowed to interfere with the white ball either to catch it and throw in the goal or to return it to his own side, or whatever.

So, officials for Sportball™. There is a head judge that watches the half line to catch teams crossing the line and to decide which team has possession of the white or orange balls, and also to judge if the bat on base interfered with the orange ball or if an ineligible player touches the orange ball. There are also 4 line judges at the corners of the field that determine if the white ball goes out the rear or sides of the field.

The only thing I haven’t nailed down is the bat, I can’t decide if it should be more like a softball bat or more like a cricket bat. The balls should be like a fast-pitch softball in size and hardness.

And that is what has been rattling around in my brain this week and finally fell out.

PSA, Opus