TESTAMONIAL:  "I was still a bit rattled by the spectacular devastation."

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Topics - Dubya

Two vast and trunkless legs of stone / Exit Interview
September 30, 2015, 07:30:42 AM
An excerpt from my last conversation with my former boss.

Me: So did you have a chance to look over my bids for the west apartment at 209?

Boss: Yes. Um. I cannot afford this.

Me: I went as cheap as I can. We're at the point where it's an even trade-off. I can save you money on materials, but the cost of labor will rise if I build you cabinets from scratch. You see?

Boss: My tenants aren't paying their rent. All this week I've had Jack doing eviction and cleaning.

Me: You told me you wanted this building done. You had money set aside for it. Remember that?

Boss: ...

Me: And the work I've done so far?

Boss: ...

Me: Well, ma'am, pay me when you get the money and we'll go from there, then.

Boss: But the city is coming to inspect in a week!

Me, laughing: I can't rebuild your kitchen with no materials.

Boss: ...

Me: Call me when you have money again.

So now I'm stocking shelves at a grocery store overnights. Less money, but less nonsense to put up with
Discordian Recipes / So I Got A Blender
June 13, 2015, 06:03:00 PM
Unfortunately, I have no booze ATM.

Fortunately, I have other stuff.

Fat Bastard Shake

Fill blender with ice cream.
-for this round, my weapon of choice was Breyers Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
Pulse blender until 3/4 full.
Add 1 cup peanut butter.
Fill blender with milk.
Blend until drinkable.
Get large glass.
Fill in quarters, topping each quarter with chocolate sauce.
Collapse into lactose/diabetic coma.
Wake up.
Repeat. Possibly add whipped cream next time.

Or Kill Me / How to Use a Toilet
May 22, 2015, 06:56:27 PM
So this afternoon I have to show a tenant how to the a toilet.

Not how to actually excrete, thankfully, but how to listen to make sure the damn thing shuts off like its supposed to. The reason being that this tenant has let her toilet run continuously for two months. My boss, the landlady, only learned of the situation when she got a $1200 water bill in the mail and started calling tenants to see WTF was going on.

I was over there yesterday to get the thing fixed and the tenant was nowhere to be found. I met her today when I went back there to do some painting. She didn't seem to be retarded. She had a thick accent,some sort of African accent. Maybe Im being uncharitable, and she just doesnt realize how expensive water is around here. Or I hope not, but mayne she just doesnt have much experience with plumbing in general.

Also at issue - the laziness of whoever installed the thing in the first place. The whole problem stemmed from a chain that connected one doohickey with another, and said chain having too much slack on it, with the slack catching on the second doohickey and preventing the tank from filling. Merely trying the thing out a few times would have made this problem plain, if whoever installed it couldn't see it coming.

This larger problem is symptomatic. You have ignorance, willful ignorance and/or personal issues combining with laziness and/or stupidity to create totally preventable problems, which, while fixable, take time away from getting anything useful done.

Lol, my summary of history.

Feeling a little pessimistic today.
Or Kill Me / Damn Achilles AND his tortoise
May 20, 2015, 05:01:17 AM
Ever been engaged in a task, only to discover that for every part of the task you try to complete, two or more things become apparent that have to be done first?

So I was wrestling with a stairway today. Like the rest of the house, its old and run-down. Half rotten. My original plan was to replace two big posts that help hold it up. It looked like they were only sitting on the ground, not cemented
in as they should have been, which would be par for the course with this place.

Sadly, frustratingly, this was not the case. They had been cemented in, and then rotted away at ground level. I didn't find this out until I was a foot deep in the ground and my shovel snapped.

Then the various bits of superstructure began falling apart as I tried to take them off so I could get to  the posts. The[[/ bits that didn't have a ridiculous number of nails in them, anyway. Then, on closer inspection, the landing at the top turned out to be a sort of wooden cat's cradle of supports underneath. All of which had to be detached from the posts to get the posts out.

But I don't tell you all this just to vent. No.

I actually made a couple of observations.

First, that simple observation of a problem isn't enough. Often - especially today - there are secondary, tertiary, hell, whole layers of problems beneath the obvious one(s).

Second, that Achilles can not only beat the tortoise, but then proceed to lay the smack down on Xeno by crossing all of the intermediate space at once. In the case of this project, I could have saved a great deal of time and energy by taking my Big Ass SledgehammerTM and knocking the thing down and rebuilding it completely from scratch.

Or Kill Me / Get a job, ya bum
May 18, 2015, 04:25:53 AM
So Ive been pondering lately on the attitude I used to have.

Well, attitudes.

See, first, I was naive enough to look at bums on the corners and actually think, get a job.

Later, having been one of them, I thought, well, it's hard, but if you really want to, you can pull yourself out of the gutter.

Still later, things werent quite so dire. I was again unemployed, but I had learned a little about the system and was getting several kinds of welfare. There was simply no work to be had, so I settled into a state of apathy that still appalls me when I think about  it.

More recently, I found myself in this town where I am now. There was work nominally available, but not unless you had local connections. So I almost spitefully went back to various kinds of welfare.

Very recently, I actually found work, or a reasonable facsimile. And now I find that I have a predicament.

See, to keep this job, I need a vehicle. To keep the vehicle, I need a license. To get my license, I need to pay  thousands of dollars in tickets. Plus  two kinds of insurance. Plus still be able to put gas in said vehicle

On top of that, once I report my income to the powers that be, I'll have to begin paying for health insurance. And child
support, which I don't mind in general terms, but I find very unjust in my case for reasons that would take up another whole post.

Generally speaking, its actually costing me money to work.

Im not suggesting that I shouldn't be responsible for these obligations, but damn me its a steep climb out of the gutter
Or Kill Me / Applied Geometry
May 15, 2015, 04:10:15 AM
First you must put on your hard-hat.

No, seriously, dude, this place is a hundred years old and hasn't seen any repairs in the last twenty.

Now, we've got to rip this plaster and lathe down. It's moldy back there. Once that's done, we get to replace any of the studs that are rotted. You'd think that would be easy, but this place has settled over the years. There's not a single straight line left in it, nor one square angle. No two of these studs will be equal.

What's that? It wouldn't be that way in a new house? There's one across the street. Take your tape measure and go find me two walls exactly the same size.

It goes deeper than that. That 2x4 is really a 1 1/2 by 3 1/2.

It's all about approximation.

Because Eris hated that Pythagoras was smarter than her. He had to show off, and us poor grunts who actually do stuff have been paying for it ever since.
Discordian Recipes / Burritos
May 10, 2015, 12:51:00 AM
Couldn't help myself. There was an old lady who sold burritos off a cart outside my apartment building when I lived in Juarez. This foulmouthed crone served up some of the best food I ever had.

The Burrito Lady's Super Secret Breakfast Burrito Recipe

1 pack flour tortillas
1 pkg pork chorizo
1 jalapeño
6-8 eggs
1 lb Oaxaca cheese (mozzarella works if you can't get Oaxaca)
1 bottle Dos Equis

Grate cheese.
Remove chorizo from casing and fry.
When chorizo has degenerated into a sloppy mess, open Dos Equis.
Sip Dos Equis. After five minutes or half a bottle, stir chorizo, lower heat and add eggs.
Scramble eggs into chorizo. Chop jalapeño.
Increase heat and stir in cheese and jalapeño.
Stir until the aroma drives you insane with gluttony.
Remove from heat, warm tortillas, wrap mixture in them and glory in the awesomeness.
Also, drink the other half of the Dos Equis.