Monday, February 17, 2020

Housekeeping.

I've been remiss. 

Now that I take a closer look,  I see that there have been some comments hanging around in my "waiting for....something or other"  folder,  and at least a couple of them were legit.  So,  if any of you legit commenters out there didn't see your comment show up.  I do apologise.

Turns out,  most of them where just gibberish.  Wondering if I need a car loan,  or some other such nonsense.  Anyway,  I sort of forgot that there was such as thing as comment moderation.  Curiously,  none of them were offering "male enhancement".   Should I feel slighted,  or slightly smug?

Whatever.

Meanwhile,  I'm sure you're wondering in what upside down world we're living,  since I'm on here TWO DAYS IN A ROW. 
O. M.  G....

Well,  there's nothing on TV,  and I thought I'd take a stab at putting the little micro SD card in the side of this here brand new Chromebook that T.C. so very kindly got me for Christmas.   I did use a laptop once upon a time when we lived in Europe,  and lugged it around with me when we made little trips here and there.  But most of my photos are on the PC up in the office,  (which I should be backing up,  I might add)  and I haven't really decided if I want to have pictures on this device as well.   Oh and,  the laptop (an Acer,  I think)  lasted about five years,  and then started making funny noises,  and then ultimately wouldn't fire up.  It was a modified version of "Blue Screen of Death",  and anyone whom I spoke to,  basically said it wasn't worth the trouble to fix.  So off it went,  to Computer heaven.

Oh,  and I have to say,  once I more or less figured it out,  the Chromebook is indeed pretty awesome.  Not nearly as hot as a laptop (better batteries I suspect)  and runs heaps longer on a charge. Just have to get used to the keyboard,  and the "touchpad".  Still not keen on the touchpad.    I might have to suck it up and buy a cordless mouse.   We'll see.






   So,  let me explain that picture.

See,  T.C. wanted me to make her a towel rack.  While I realise that I renovated the upstairs bathroom and there's plenty of room to dry ones towels,  she's not keen on the way that looks.   Don't ask.

Do you think I could find something on "Wayfair"  or Amazon or some such place.   Or even Walmart for that matter?  Nope.

So I've been working on putting one together.  Of course,  I can't find any hint of plans out there (on the net, I mean),  so I had to conjure up something out of my pea brain.
It's painful.

And I realise,  what you see in the picture just looks like a bunch of sticks,  but there's some significance there.

I had completed all the various pieces,  got it all sorted "mechanically" speaking,  and then set about to start the finishing process.  And by that I mean, I broke out the sander.

Horrible,  horrible job.  Dust mask,  ear plugs.  Messy. Noisy.

You get the idea.

And then it occurred to me,  I do have these fancy schmancy hand planes that I try to keep razor sharp,  and shouldn't I be planing the wood to get it smooth???

When I came in for a tea break and mentioned this to T.C.,  along with admitting that "I'm an idiot",  it should be noted that she did agree with me without a moment's hesitation.

But I let that go.

I still have to sand the curvy bits,   but the hand planing program was heaps nicer.   I promise to take a photo of the finished product in due time.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep that stick on the ice.

And feel free to comment.  I'll make sure to check.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Up and down like a toilet seat.

The temperature,  that is.   We're finally getting a bit of our "come-upance"  on the Winter end of things.  A few days ago it was plus five,  and this morning it's something like minus 13. (wrote this a couple days ago,  sorry)  I'm not translating to Fahrenheit.  And don't get me started when it comes to the goofiness of Fahrenheit.  Why 32?  Why not,  forty-seven?

On the winter end of things,  so far I haven't really minded.   It's been suspiciously mild.  So much so that I felt compelled to go out and rake up some random leaves that were just way too messy for me to tolerate.   Trying not to slip over the edge here.

This will serve as my once quarterly blog entry.  And thanks to any and all who hang around to read this drivel.

Which brings me to a bit of a sad topic,  and that is the passing of someone who always was willing to put a comment on the blog,  and who will now be missed for that and other reasons.  Of course,  I'm referring to George Yates,  the author of Our Awesome Travels.
I never actually met George or Suzie,  but I did happen to see George a couple years back in Grand Bend,  as I was sitting in my truck waiting for a buddy to come out of Tim Horton's with our coffees.  George was just coming out of Grandpa Jimmy's,  and the first thing I noticed was the big ole hat that he had on his head.
This blogging thing can be a bit of a strange critter,  as there have been others (Rod Ivers of Retired Rod)  who have passed away,  and been sorely missed.    Margie and Bruce Mallin also come to mind.
When you read about it,  it sort of "hits you",  in a way that's hard to explain.

But,  let's not too maudlin here.


OK,  what else was I going to say?

I've been messing about in my "shop",  of course.   Finally replaced a "temporary"  out-feed attachment to my table-saw that I built in (wait for it)  1992.    It was supposed to be temporary.   Plus,  I had to mend it at least a couple times over the years decades.

Here it is:



 Simply a frame with some thin MDF attached.  It was held on with a barrel bolt and a bungee cord.  I could take it off,  fold up the legs and set it aside.

But I wanted something that was on the table saw on a more permanent basis.   Starting with this:



And then another frame attached to that:


Then you end up with this:

Which then becomes this:



I was too lazy to make new legs,  as the ones off the old extension were perfectly serviceable.


And this,  is how I spend my days.  And of course,  as I'm not overly creative/clever/whatever,  this kind of thing not only takes me forever,  but wasn't even my idea.   Stole it off the net.   Now,  in my defence,  the original was built back when cell phones were the size of a brick and the "internet"  was some sort of "inter-netting"  in swim trunks.  You know,  to help keep *things* in place.

In other news,  it's also taken me something like 30 years to finally break my wooden mallet. 
 Dang it.



Supposed to kinda look like this:


I've whaled on the end of a lot of a lot of chisels with this thing over the years,  and now I suspect I'll have to make a new one.  Again.  Dang it.   I'll stick it together with some construction adhesive,  and see how that works.

I originally made it when I was making our blanket chest.  All hand cut dovetails,  in cherry wood no less.  Coincidentally,  it was once again cherry wood that I was whaling on this time when it came asunder.

Oh and,  if you think you can just "use a hammer"?   Well yes,  you can.  Good luck.  It helps to be able to look at where you're actually placing the tip of the chisel,  as opposed to striking the end of the chisel with the hammer.  And not your hand.  A mallet is more forgiving,  that is,  easier to aim.

And there you have it.

Thanks for moving your eyes back and forth.

Keep your stick on the ice.


Thursday, December 5, 2019

Well, that was a "fun" day.

Just checking in here.  You may have to move your eyes back and forth a bit. 

For years now,  I've been driving around (in several different countries as well,  but you know that)  relatively unscathed when it comes coming into contact with other vehicles.   There have been a few close calls,  like a couple weeks ago when someone (never did see the driver) decided to come out of a parking garage without looking,  and was within about a foot of my driver's door before the light went on,  realising that there was someone there.   I was laying on the horn the whole time.  It was a "retirement residence",  so your guess is as good as mine.

Now,  that was in downtown Burlington.  I think maybe I need to stay out of the downtown or something,  but we need to go there once a week to get to the Pub.   I mean,  there are some things I ain't gonna give up.

Anyhoo,  last Thursday  (Oh and,  Happy belated Thanksgiving to our American friends)  I was once again in the downtown,  tooling along,  minding my own business,   when a garbage truck driver decided to fling open his door to go back and help his buddy do their thing.   Unfortunately,  his timing was spot on.   Well that is,  if he HAD been aiming to drive his door into the side of my truck.   Isn't there a thing about,  "Be sure and check for traffic before opening your door.?    Well,  he didn't.



It's actually kinda hard to make out in those pics,  I suspect due to it being a white truck. 

Anyhoo,  there's a big ole crease on the passenger door,  the mirror is obliterated,  and the window is kinda scratched to shit.  Oh,  and there's the beginnings of a crease on the second door too.   That sticker there is from the cop shop,  letting everyone know that yes,  pictures have been taken.

Funny thing is,  when I called the insurance company,  at some point the young lady on the phone asked,  "Do you have the mirror?". 

*Snort*!  Um,  there was nothing left of the mirror! 
After waiting for "The Supervisor" and sorting out all the information,  we picked up the bits and threw it all in the back of the garbage truck.  The door of the garbage truck?  Well,  it was bent up pretty good as well,  and couldn't be opened.  (So at least the driver won't be opening his door into traffic for the rest of his shift?)
Interestingly,  although most of the handle is missing on the Tundra,  the door was still operable.

One thought that I had was,  "What if I had been riding a bicycle?"   I mean,  I nearly got "doored" once in Vienna,  but that door wasn't at chest height,  such as was the case with the garbage truck.   I suspect I would have been in the hospital,  or worse. 

It's in the shop.  The estimate was thirty-six hundred. 

I know!  I thought maybe a couple grand,  but I suppose it adds up.  The parts have been ordered and should arrive today.  And here's something interesting,  the insurance company only gives the body shop seven days to put it right after the parts arrive.   Maybe that's because I have a rental that they're paying for??   

Speaking of which,  it's a mini-van.   And,  I realise we rented one a couple years ago in Maui,  and that was fine and all,  but I really wanted a pick-up truck.  And I mean,  this mini-van has a lot of little bells and whistles,  (heated steering wheel,  heated seats,  remote start,  remote operable sliding doors and rear hatch)  but just the same,  it's a POS.

There's something sort of rattling around in the rear suspension,  which I find somewhat disconcerting.  Plus,  every time I start it up,  it tells me it's due for an oil change.  Really??

Even Travelling Companion had a somewhat less than complimentary comment in the brief time that she rode in it with me yesterday.  And I hadn't said anything to influence her opinion in any way.

It's built by the people who claim to have "perfected the mini-van"  after having introduced it back in 1984.   Anyway,  I just thought,  "If this is their idea of having perfected it,  I'm not sure what they've been smoking."

Of course,  they're also 58% owned by Fiat,  so now you know what I'm talking about.

I'll be bugging the manager over at the rental company to see if I can trade it for a truck when one shows up.  Apparently they only have so many of them,  and they were all out.

Well,  that's my little missive for today.  And maybe for a while.

Hope all is well with you lot.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep your stick on the ice.