Ghost power

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Weird thing occured today. I am working away in my home office (aka the garage) when I notice something out of the corner of my eye that isn’t right…

Sitting on a shelf to my right is a Lighthouse 400 lantern made by Goal Zero. I have had a couple years and have used is less that a handful of times. I bought it from someone who received it as a gift and didn’t want it. It was in the sealed original packaging when I picked it up.

It caught my attention because it was on, while sitting on the shelf.

It wasn’t that way when I started work this morning.

It caught my attention in my periphial vision because it was blinking slightly and then just came on.

Now, mind you, the power switch for the lantern is not on. It hasn’t been powered on. As it sits next to me now, it is in the off position.

I can turn the lantern on to the right to use both LED lights and return it to the off position. The light stays on. I can turn the lantern on to the left and use only one of the LED lights and return it to the off position. The light stays on.

I have no idea what is going on.

I searched the internet to see if someone else has had a similar issue. I only found one instance and it was a different model and it was after the person had physically turned on the lantern themselves.

So bizarre.

I have contacted the company but haven’t heard back yet.

For now, I am going to leave the thing on an open concrete floor in the garage in case it decides to set itself on fire too…

Tired choices

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Northwest living can be an actual and total grind. Seriously.

The joke around here is that summer starts after July 4 and the number of rainy, cool July 4ths I have experienced in my 50 years is pretty high. Look, it’s wet a lot up here and we all know it. BUT…

Right now the grass and weeds are growing uncontrolled because the rain literally stops for like one day, maybe two, every week and a half. As such, I am forced to make choices about what activites are going to take place outside.

Do I do something fun or relaxing outside? Or, do I do yardwork in an effort to catch up after not doing yardwork for a week/week and a half? If I choose what I want to do, that which I should/need to do suffers. If I choose what I should/need to do, that which I would prefer to do suffers.

If you choose incorrectly, it could be a long while in between being able to do either outside.

I am tired of making these choices.

How about summer start now for a change?

Retained stiffness

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Or maybe it’s retained soreness?

Last weekend I began working on building a planter by the new patio. It’s going to be one that has a short retaining wall to keep the soil and such contained. But, to get the project started, I had to dig out the area first. That part wasn’t actually as much work as I expected (the soil was mostly sand) but there was still a couple hours worth of shoveling and wheelbarrowing the soil away.

Once the initial groundwork was done, I put down weedblock fabric and the shoveled and wheelbarrowed drain rock to form the bed of the area where the planter is being created. Again, it went faster than predicted. I then sorted retaining wall blocks already on hand to see what I had versus what I was going to need for the plan in my head.

I stopped at this point though, for several reasons. One, it was starting to get late into the evening and my stomach was telling me it was time for dinner. Two, it was getting much cooler since the sun had gone down over the horizon. Three, my body was really sore already.

Here we are three and a half days after I worked on the project and I am still feeling the soreness, stiffness, pain(?) of the weekend’s work. I can probably chock all this up to the fact that I am “old-ish”, out of shape for such a physical activity, and well, it’s hard work. But, mostly because I am out of shape.

Not that I will probably do anything much about it. I am just complaining.

I want to try and work on the next steps this week after work, but I am not sure the weather will cooperate and a holiday weekend is fast approaching. There are likely other chores that will need to be tended to first.

Counter-productive

Or maybe mixed message.

Hell, all I know is the Democrats want to have their cake and eat it too.

Democrats push clean energy. Like PUSH it. It is the solution to all the world’s ills and will save the planet. We keep hearing this over and over and over. It doesn’t matter that creating clean energy also has it’s drawbacks. Except…see below.

Democrats also want to protect the environment. By that, they mean earth, plants, animals, etc etc etc. Thus, their push for clean energy is their answer. At all cost, protect the environment. Seems that protection has a cost that is intentional and unintentional at the same time.

Democrats are punishing clean energy (their answer for everything) for killing part of the environment (their favorite hill to die on) by using the very government they control (at the moment) to hurt the industry they tout because it hurt the environment they want to protect.

I mean, come on, this is kind of ludicrous any way you look at it. You want clean energy so they build it. But, in building it, there will be some wildlife that dies because, well, their wild and you can’t control their actions. So, you make suggestions to mitigate the damage and you make exceptions and create acceptable collateral damage waivers. If the companies don’t play your game, then you punish them for wild things doing what wild things do.

Equivelent? You need to get from one place to another. You need a road to get there. Someone wants to build said road (let’s say 100 miles) through an area where wild animals are known to exist. You tell the road builder (or the people using the road) that they need to do something to keep the wild animals crossing the road from getting hit by vehicles driving on the road. You tell them they either need to build a 8 foot fence on one side, both sides, or apply for a waiver that will exempt people from having to pay a fine when animals get killed. They decide the cost is too prohibitive to build the road because of the regulations, so they don’t build the road you wanted. OR, the rules get waived, the road gets built, and then the rules are reinstated afterwards leading to the people that built the road or travel the road to get punished because you changed the rules on them.

Anyway, you can see the stupidity here, right? Democrats hurting the very thing they encourage.

Commute bonus

An early morning, first day of Fall, sunrise. #nofilter

There are very few things good about getting up early. There are very few things good about having to commute to work. There are just very few good things that can even be mentioned when you combine those two things together.

However, this morning I was witness to one of the best sunrises I have seen in a long while. It was quite breathtaking. I wish I could have stopped right there on the highway and gotten a better picture.

So, I guess you can call it a commute bonus. I wasn’t looking for it. I wasn’t asking for it. I really didn’t even want it. But, I am glad I got to see it.

Projects, projects, and more projects

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So, how do you know when you have too many irons in the fire? Is it that you just look at everything and can’t decide which is most important or where to start because they just all need to be done? Or is it that you look at everything and you just decide that you don’t know where to start and therefore just don nothing?

Currently, I have too many things going on that I can’t decide where to start, though there is a looking deadline of rain coming at the end of the week, so that dictates a little of the timeline.

Project one: I have a front yard that needs some attention. I have a hedge and a tree that need trimmed and some Sluggo (bait for slugs and snails) to put down. While these aren’t extremely time consuming and aren’t necessarily urgent, they are the final pieces to having the front yard cleaned up for the summer.

Project two: A garage sale purchase needs cleaned up and tested. The house gets exceptionally warm during hit weather, but there isn’t a heat pump to control the temp inside. So, while visiting a garage sale recently someone was selling a pretty decent portable AC unit for $25. It’s four years old and needs to be cleaned up. I had the guy run it before purchase and it appears to be operable, but it needs to be given some attention. Unfortunately, it won’t likely happen before the warmer weather this week.

Project three: The patio has been built in the back yard and a gazebo purchased. Spent most of the day yesterday working on putting wood sealant on it to further protect the wood into the future. Now the assembly of the gazebo needs to be done…a very time consuming task. Obviously, having it constructed before the weather comes in this weekend would be ideal as it would help to keep the water from hitting most of the wood. So, that seems to be the immediate winner of focus.

There are lots of other projects that needs to be done too, just none of those seem as pressing as these three.

When faced with a list of projects, how do you prioritize which ones get done first?

You’ve been duped

This shouldn’t come to you as a shock, but you’ve been duped into thinking you need to wear a mask outdoors (if you are actually one of those wearing a mask outdoors) and it’s created a whole spectrum of baseless fears.

Of course, if you have little critical thinking skills or have used that skill very little as of late then this probably is a shock. If you have been wearing a mask while you do nearly any activity out of doors, well, you’re an idiot.

There was never any science behind the idea that you needed to wear a mask out of doors, but the CDC (Center for Disease Control) told you something different. That info, as it turns out and was highly suspect to begin with, was completely off base. They don’t even track whether there was ever any outdoor transmission here in Washington. (oh, btw, that guy in the top pic is the WA governor – who says he relies on science…that doesn’t exist).

“I’m sure it’s possible for transmission to occur outdoors in the right circumstances,” Dr. Aaron Richterman of the University of Pennsylvania told me, “but if we had to put a number on it, I would say much less than 1 percent.”

NYT article linked above

The “right circumstances” the doctor above is referring to, are listed by another doctor in the article above. Basically those “right circumstances” are “crowded places or close conversation.” Less than 1%? Really?? Weird how we were all mislead to think it was 10%, which is already a small number and caused irrational few for people all over the place.

Since the truth is out and science, apparently, isn’t all it is chocked up to be, throw caution to the wind (literally).

STOP WEARING A MASK OUTDOORS!

There is no need, unless of course you just want to continue to prove you’re an idiot.

Tug-o-war

The tug-o-war is a struggle while on vacation. You are being pulled this way and that. You are torn between two sets of family who both have missed you, who have looked forward with anticipation to your arrival, and ultimately have planned out every waking moment of your visit.

Here in Arizona, there are two sets of relatives to visit – the inlaws and the sister-n-law’s family. When you only have a week during your vacation, your time has to be split between both and that is the challenge. How do you keep both happy and feel like you have spent enough time with both? In the end, someone is likely going to feel like they got the short end of the stick.

So, this vacation isn’t shaping up to be all that relaxing. It will be go go go the whole time and if it isn’t one it will be the other.

Yesterday’s adventure left out one family but it did have provide for a unique experience as there was a visit to a national park where wild horses roam free. There was a good chance the horses wouldn’t be spotted since they go where they please and one would never know where to find them unless you were in a helicopter looking for them.

Anyway, as it happens, we got very lucky and they were literally less than a hundred yards from us since they had come down to water at the river. A magnificent site they are! Kind of felt like the Old West for a moment. Just sitting there on the bank of the river, watching and listening as they did their thing. I am sure the horses probably feel the tug-o-war war between modern society and the quiet solitude of the wild, something they really have no control over.

Well, despite the push and pull of family obligations, this was a gratifying experience and I am thankful that I was lucky enough to catch this site on the very first visit.

Avoidance

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It snowed for about 36 hours this last weekend. The snow was light and fresh and was covering everything. We got about 9″ of the white stuff.

For a short time, the world was quiet. Peaceful even. There is something very comforting in watching it snow. For me, it causes me to slow down and enjoy the stillness. Silence. Fresh.

But, under that blanket of white there is a yard that just makes me cringe.

I can honestly say this is the time of year where I just think the NW is plain ol’ ugly. The trees are naked. The grass isn’t green yet. Everything feels grey and cold, not to mention sopping wet. The snow helps hide this dreadful scene.

With the snow, the yuckiness is gone. It just goes away. It can be avoided, put off, ignored. The ugliness is replaced by something beautiful, divine, perfect.

So, while the snow lasted, I avoided even thinking of all the work that has to happen in the yard before Spring arrives. Now the snow is melting quickly and the sopping, rain soaked ugliness is returning.

Avoidance is no longer something I can hold on to.

I am just gonna have to do it.

Disc disc

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OK, I am about to complain about something I am still learning and haven’t a lot of knowledge on, but that’s what this blog is for – complaining, or pissing and moaning.

What is the topic of the day? Disc Golf.

Over the last several months I have had the chance to play disc golf with a buddy. He was looking for someone to go with him and I had done it a couple times while in college and I knew there were a few places here locally to go and play, so I said yes.

And I had a lot of fun!

Of course, there is a learning curve with this sport and I am a little short on technique (as well as just being short) but I had fun nonetheless. So much so, that I bought my own set of beginner discs. There is skill in trying to throw a disc accurately and for distance. Something I am gonna have to spend time learning to do.

Anyway, my buddy took me to a local course that is relatively open. I guess in the disc golf circles, this would be considered a good “beginner’s course.” Yes, there are some trees and other obstacles on the course, but not in a way that would make it overly challenging or accessible.

Now the complaint…yesterday, my buddy took me to a course across the river. He said it was a more difficult course. And it was! It was full of trees. Everywhere! The best example for how many trees there were, think of playing frisbee in a cemetery, where every 7th headstone was a tree. Yeah, that’s a lot of obstacle to play around. No good sight lines. No straight shots.

Anyway, I fared alright considering it was my first time there but I still lost (yes, I am competitive). I got to looking last night at the stats for the two course: both are a par 54 course with a total difference in distance of 121 feet (5193 to 5072). My complaint here is the par for the course.

How can a course with very few straight shots and trees over the entire course still be a par 54, the same as a course with much fewer trees? Who rates these things and decides the par? Obviously, trees add to the challenge but that should also increase the par, shouldn’t it?

Again, I am learning this sport. I don’t know how these things work. I just kinda felt like I played the course better than my score would reflect. Truth is, though I complain, I still had fun! That’s important right?

Well, and winning too. But fun is most important…or so I have been told…