(Last updated: 5-18-2018)
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Welcome to my crappy website. It truly is a bootleg bunch of crap, but I don't care. Not at all. I'm not doing it just to entertain you scumbags; I'm doing it because writing is fun but I am too lazy to actually write a real book. Don't laugh because I'm serious.
If you want to know who the hell I am and why I spent my hard-earned $14.99 to register this domain and to share my thoughts with the world then you can click here to find out. I have no update schedule so if you don't like it then you can ggggggggggeeeeeeeeeeetttttttttttt oooooooouuuuuuuuttttttttttttttt!
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Friday, 5-18-18: VACATION IN A FEW HOURS.
I got every lawn mowed earlier, and we took the dogs to the kennel just after we finished seeding and covering the lawn out back. Today is one of many days where I am grateful to have hauled on my bootleg Bangor duplex on Kenduskeag Ave because I would have had to drive my ass over there to spend another 45 minutes of my precious... precious time mowing and weedwacking that place. 45 minutes isn't much on some days, but on a day like today it helped a lot.
Last week I ordered 6 yards of loam, and we've already used 3/4 of it mostly out back. Over the past few days I've moved some out there and staged it in places so the work today would be less daunting. Dillon and Katherine helped us finish it all up to we really did it fast. It was very cool of them to pitch in or who knows, I might be out there now still getting it ready. Here is what things looked like early this morning:
We'll greatly miss the dogs while we are gone. It's just not the same without them here. In that photo they were hoping I'd throw them a ball or do something else to entertain them. Hopefully they have a good stay at the kennel next week. Yesterday I scraped down that area by the patio blocks leading off the deck, but before I scraped it there was not much for lawn there. No problem when it's dry, but when wet it leads to mud getting tracked into the house. Mud in the house = what a bunch of crap!
With the dogs it's hard to fix the lawn because they track all through it so we wanted to have it all seeded and ready to grow while we are all away. I even bought straw to put down over everything, and we used a lot of dirt for low and bumpy areas, of which there were many. I bought some good quality grass seed, the stuff that also has fertilizer, so it better gods damn well grow or I will get emotional. After some work in the sun things now look like this:
GROW, GROW, GROW. I'd give that friggin' grass PEDs if I could find some. Roid that stuff up and make it luscious so we have 100% lawn when we return home from what will hopefully be a very fun vacation. Not pictured are a bunch more bare spots on the other part of the lawn between the deck and the shed.
Kat's gig ends at 0100, the typical Friday night last call, and I will help her pack up as usual. We hope to get home quickly so we can stow her gear, load our bags, and leave here around 0145. We're all driving 3.5 hours to Boston to fly out of Logan on an American Airlines flight direct to Cancun with a 0745 departure. If all goes as planned we'll be parked by 0530, give or take (allowing for a gas/piss stop along the way) and at the airport by 0600. Long-term parking is close but not actually on the airport property so we take a shuttle over to terminal B. Hopefully the weather and everything else cooperates for us. Dillon, Debbie, and Katherine are all also going to stay with us in our 2BR villa that sleeps 6 and that also has a kitchen.
We just tried to take a nap, but we only slept about 5 minutes. What a bunch of crap! Maybe I will lay down again tonight before 0100, but if not no worries I can get us to Boston late-night without feeling too tired. I'll drink half a can of Monster Energy if I start to fade, and once we are on the plane I can doze a bit. Worst case if I don't sleep oh well I'll just make up for it when we get to our Royal Haciendas resort. I'm sure when we do get to our "villa" we will all be pretty wiped out. Oh well, small price to pay for a week in the tropics!
Kat and I took our honeymoon at the RH just over three years ago, and we liked it so much that we got hooked into buying a timeshare there. Absolutely zero regrets about that decision. Funny we haven't even stayed at our "home" resort since then. Our last vacation to Mexico was at a different place booked through our timeshare exchange called Interval International. So far I feel we have gotten our money's worth from Interval International because we also booked a trip out west through them 1.5 years ago. Who knows, we might do another trip out there this fall. Right now that is the tentative plan...
Wednesday, 5-16-18: 4 days of working for Jason
Wow what a house we worked on. Look at the "great room" in this camp/mansion:
The ceiling fan is about the size of an aircraft prop. The speakers on the wall are covered in painter's tape and plastic so they don't harbor dust from floor sanding and cleanup. The place is not done yet, but it is getting damn close.
Just an incredible home overall. Also as amazing is Jason's main control for all the security cameras, audio, video, and related technology. I spent most of the time down there helping Pat install security cameras, and there were a few challenges along the way such as wires not working correctly. What a bunch of crap! The prevailing theory is spray foam insulation was improperly applied, that created heat, and it melted some of the wires. Epic fail there. Running new wires isn't such a big deal when everything is still open and just framed, but once the sheetrock is up and the finish work is mostly done then running new wires = all bad.
When we get back from our vacation we plan to help Katherine get a car, and at some point nearer the end of the month we will hopefully make that happen. We did look at a Chevy Traverse that was for sale locally (sign on the car alongside the road), but that car was 10 pounds of shit stuffed into a 5 pound bag. The sign said 58,000 miles but the thing actually had 85,994 miles on it. OMG WHAT A DECEPTIVE BUNCH OF CRAP. We got out of there faster than fat kids get eliminated in dodge ball.
The Celtics beat the Cavs last night so they're up 2-0 in the best of 7 Eastern Confrence Finals. Awesome! FU Lebron James. Unfortunately, the Red Sox have lost their last 2 games at Fenway to the A's so they're down to second place. Still a 28-14 record at this point of the season is fantastic so overall I gots no big complaints there.
I suppose I should head on over to my bootleg gym, pay a bill or two, and then do my rent receipts/feedback surveys. Every year I give my tenants surveys to fill out so I know what areas need improvements. In the past I've gotten some stupid shit and half the tenants don't even bother, but sometimes I get quality, useful feedback that I actually use to do some minor repairs and upgrades.
Saturday, 5-12-18: We have dirt.
I've spent my time so far helping the guys with speakers and security cameras, and it looks like Monday I'll team back up with Pat ro run a new cat-5 wire for one of the dozen or so total cameras. The wires are already all roughed-in, but one at the top of the garage is damaged so that is a bunch of crap. Since the finish work is all done redoing wires is not fun times. Speaking of not fun times, installing the cameras is difficult. We need to be elevated for all of them, and some require us to go way high. I'm not afraid of heights, but in some spots the ladder positioning and/or staging is awkward due to the terrain.
While I was working down in Stockton Springs on Friday we had 6 yards of loam delivered. The back yard needs some love so we will use most or all of the dirt to fill in bare spots, and we will use some of the loam for our two garden beds. We had one garden bed last year, and this year we plan to have two. We'll likely plant them once we get back from our Riviera Maya vacation at the end of the month, but we want to have everything ready to roll this coming week. We leave very early next Saturday so at this time next week we should be enjoying some warm weather on the Caribbean coast of Mexico. I'm getting more excited for the trip with each passing day.
^The loam took up more of the driveway than I would have liked. What a bunch of crap! Then Debbie and Dillon could not seem to get their parking straight. It was epic fail for them until we got it all in order. Today I moved most of the dirt from the driveway and got it started in the back yard along the rear fence. The dogs will play in it some, but oh well. That side yard still needs cleaning; I'll probably take that old mattress to the dump this Wednesday or Thursday. This year for the city spring cleanup the dump ain't free, and that is a ridiculous bunch of crap!
We're likely gonna stop into Jester's before we bivouac tonight. I actually stayed at Jester's for the entire time last night, and it was a good crowd. I was having fun until near the very end when I just wanted to go home and sleep. I didn't overdo it on the booze so I had the energy to lose to Deno at rball today just before lunch. When the night ended last night, and when I woke up this morning, I told myself there is no way in hell that I want to go out tonight, but now I think it will be fun. I don't want to spend too much money since we blew 40 bucks last night (after the tip), but the way I see it Jason is paying since I'm earning extra cash working for him over these few days. Normally the bar tab for us is about 20, give or take (with a healthy tip for Joel) but every now and again we splurge a tad. Kat also had some food last night so that ain't horrible for us both since I stayed the whole time.
Wednesday, 5-09-18: Turkey hunting success.
Time out for sneezing here. I had to take my first allergy pill of the season last night. What a bunch of crap! I might actually have to take one this early morning as well because something has me sneezing and stuffy in a major way. Vegitation on this property screws me all up this time of year, but I don't know what it is. There are a couple big maple trees on our little 1/4 acre lot, but I can't blame those because we have a lot of other plants, flowers, and bushes so it could be any number of things. I know whatever the problem is this place is mostly to blame because I was fine down at Mom and Dad's, and as soon as I got home I noticed I was pwned. Epic fail. I never had allergy issues before like I've had since I got this house 4+ years ago. Epic fail.
Jason and I hunted both Monday and Tuesday mornings off Rt90/Keating Rd, and there were plenty of turkeys in those woods. We got into the oak down in a ways for a few different setups. Unfortunately the only turkey that got within shotgun range for me was a hen, and this time of year it's only legal to shoot a male. By the time we finished hunting Monday it was about lunchtime, Jason took off to go work, and I helped Dad with a few chores and little things around the house. Dad is quite mobil considering his recent hip replacement, but it will be a long time before he is 100%. He is okay to drive, and he can walk around with a limp and without his cane now so that is awesome. However, he is not ready to get back into the woods yet.
We had an early supper and drove out to the prison farm where normally plenty of turkeys are roaming about. Sure enough this season was no differrent and we saw all kinds of "thunder chickens." We saw a lone hen in a field near Halfway Brook (not an official name) so I suggested where there was one there may be more. Dad thought maybe she was solo with a nest nearby, but we drove a bit closer down and towards the brook when we saw four red heads. Oh Jesus hell ya! We kept on driving and stopped almost at the brook where the terrain hid the truck, Dad waited in the truck, and he got a perfect view of me as I snuck around the back side of a dike and up the short back side. I peeked over, and there not far away at all were the same four turkeys. Unfortunately, they were all in a tight group together and laying down so I couldn't shoot. I needed them to stand up so I could get a good head shot, and I needed them to separate because one 12-gauge shotgun blast on a group that tightly-knit could have killed them all. F that. Limit is two, and I only wanted to shoot one right there.
Thankfully I had my little bootleg call in my pocket so I did a couple yelps and that got them standing and looking around. At first they were all still in a tight little group, but then three walked a couple feet, one stayed back, and that one is now in my fridge. Those birds had no clue I was there, and it was almost too easy. The one jake that I did shoot went down hard, and the others stuck around so I put a bead on another just because I could. Shooting a second bird would have been very easy, but I passed, I played around with my call a bit more just to see how they responded, and then I snuck back to the truck. After I told Dad my story (he saw me but not the turkeys) I walked back up to get my jake, but the other three were still just standing there. I still could have shot one still, but that was not my plan so I just spooked them off and grabbed my bird.
We saw many other turkeys in the last field at the farm, and I did another sneak-up mission while dodging some compost piles. However, there was too much open field and I could not call any of them closer (did not use any decoys) so after a bit I just gave up for the day. I bivouaced hard Monday night, and eary yesterday we were back at it in the woods. Jason hunted with me for the first couple hours until he had to work, and then I hunted in the woods off the Mt. Rd where the turkey and deer sign looked awesome. I didnt see any turkeys at the Mt. Rd, but no worries being in the woods was still fun. Except for the black files. Those little assholes are a bunch of crap!
I got back to the house just before 1100 yesterday, and I peeled off my camo and planned to be all done. Time for lunch and then time to put a second coat of mud on a little piece of sheetrock I installed the day prior (cancelled window in my old bedroom from where the new addition was constructed several years ago) and head back home. I was putting my shorts on when Dad told me there was a lone tom turkey down at his feeder out back. OMG. I didn't want to hunt out back because I wanted to save it for Dad in case he wants to hunt later this month, but finally I was too tempted to pass it up. I waited for the turkey to wander off into the back woods, I put my camo back on, and I headed down the path and put out one lone tom turkey decoy and used the dirt backstop down there as my hideout. I called a bit with some yelps and purrs as I peeked over the top of that mound while I laid prone on the grassy little rise. I was only 75 yards away from the house so Dad watched with binoculars from the house.
I didn't plan to linger long down there. After a few minutes I thought I heard something off to my left, but there was a breeze and also birds and squirrels. I did a gobble and was shocked to hear a gobble back off to my right, and close. OMG. I peeked over and saw a few different turkeys just at the stone wall and only maybe 20 yards away. I called in a group from the woods nearby. I was trying to position myself to get a shot at one of them when I heard more noise off to my left and some clucking. Another turkey was there and incredibly close to me! So I tried to wrench back around to my left to find that bird. Unfortunately, I could not see that turkey because it was thick in there and the dirt burm was blocking my view. What a bunch of crap! Meanwhile the tukeys off to my right seemed to be getting antsy and a bit agitated. I don't think they knew I was there, but a decoy only fools for so long. Those birds started moving back down towards the woods and away, but I had a little opening and as soon as one stuck its head up I was ready and BOOM. I jumped up, worked the action to reload, hit the safety so I didn't accidentally shoot wildly, and I scooted over as fast as I could. At first I thought I missed because I saw other turkeys running away, but then I saw the one I shot flopping around in its final death-throes. Sounds morbid, but it seems like a guarantee that when I shoot a turkey it dies and then flops around for a bit. You do NOT want to grab a turkey until you are sure it is dead because you can get carved up.
I knew I was shooting at a male turkey, but I didnt know if I was shooting at a tom or a jake. Turned out I shot a 19.2-pound tom, 10" beard, 7/8" spurs. A nice bird. I don't care about all those stats, it's just some supper, but Dad wanted to find out so we took the measurements. The tom that I shot was not the same one we saw at the feeder. I called in other turkeys with my bootleg little setup down there, and that is awesome. I don't even really feel badly about shooting on that I wanted to "save" for Dad because there are still more nice turkeys right out back, and if he feels up to it he can sneak out there in his blind and make it happen. I know he won't do it this week because Mom is on vacation with Aunt Susie out west in Oregon visiting uncle Kevin, but maybe when Mom gets back next week he will want to go. I know watching me hunt got him all fired up. He loves it!
Turkey hunting is fun because unlike deer turkeys are not nocturnal so all day long you can have a chance to get one. It seems the best time of day for calling them in is the morning, but that is no hard and fast rule. They are also very vocal so often times you can hear them coming when you do go into the woods and call. Plus if you see them in fields you can try to sneak up on them. Somtimes they seem really stupid and easy to kill, but other times they can be quite elusive because they have great vision and can see you.
Today is forecast to be a beautiful 70-75 degrees outside so I'll do some mowing and plenty of yard work. I won't work too hard today, but I want to get some things done outside because tomorrow and Friday I'll be working down in Stockton Springs with Jason. He still doesn't know how many days he will need my help, but I'm expecting to not only work two days this week for him but also to work a little early-midweek next week. He estimated 3-4 days total, but it all depends on how the job goes. I'll help him run wires and do odds and ends while I'm there. Should be a good experience, and should give us a little extra fun money to blow for our vacation in Mexico later this month. We actually leave for vacation in only 10 days. OMG.
Friday, 5-04-18: May the 4th be with you.
^HAHAHAHA. Thank you, Interweb. RIP, Leia. Should not 'a done so many drugs and should not 'a pokerized Han Solo way back in the day. Personal hot mess of a life aside, Leia was an amazing Star Wars character and I wish she was not dead.
I would totally wear a Princess Leia wig as a halloween costume. However, I would not be caught dead wearing her Jabba the Hutt slave slutty whore ROTJ outfit:
She killed that fat greasy fucker because he made her dress like a stripper at the Star Wars Hutt Cantina. What a bunch of crap! She was way hot in that outfit way back in 1983.
The reason today has become a cult Star Wars holiday is because May the fourth kinda sounds like May the Force (be with you.) Hey, works for me because most of the Star Wars movies are great. Not so much the prequels or the newest episode 8, but I digress... the Han Solo one coming later this month looks like it has potential. Eventually there will be Star Wars fatigue since Disney now appears to think pumping two of them out per year is smart business. There are a lot of interesting side and back stories to be told from the Star Wars universe, but not an infinite amount.
I take longer going to Jester's these days because that place gets packed full. Kat is the best DJ around and it has become more well-known. I'd be at the bar right now, but F that there is no room in there at around 2230. It's also Cinco De Mayo weekend so that might bring out a few extra simps. I know half the people who go to Jester's so I can make room for myself, but sometimes a lot of the regulars aren't there and I have to squeeze my scrappy ass in somewhere.
I expected my final Jackson Hewitt paycheck today so I logged in to look at how much my final pay was, and I was astonished to see I also got paid my year-end bonus today. OH JESUS HELL YA! Last year the final bonus was not paid until early June so I thought it would be another month before I saw my final bonus pay. I had a great season financially. Worked about 30 fewer hours overall and made about $500 more than last season. Score! I think my apex has been reached, though. From here on out I think my JH pay will decrease because I don't want to work so much anymore. I am not lazy, but F working too much. Work to live, not live to work. Hell for all I know I might not even be invited back to JH for a 5th tax season. If my boss ever discovers this turd-heap of a site I'm sure I'm all done. Getting fired would be a bunch of crap, but I would survive and just do something else. I already got "fired" from Liberty Tax several years ago so I know it can happen. I've actually been shit-canned from two different jobs in my life, but both of those terminations were a result of overall business failure. First was Circuit City way back in 2003 as a desperate cost-cutting measure that ultimately failed. I think 2014 was the year Liberty Tax hauled on me because I was the junior preparer out of the two others there, and that place also ended up going out of business. What a bunch of crap!
Speaking of work, Jason needs my help for a bit later next week on a big job. I worked with him a few years ago in BoothBay Harbor on some million-dollar-plus house on the ocean, and it was impressive to see him work. He is damn good at what he does. I'll hopefully see him on Monday morning when we meet up to do some turkey hunting. Tomorrow I need to dig out all my turkey stuff and prepare for an early Monday morning departure to the midcoast.
I wonder if Cliff will run a raking crew again this year? My guess is yes he will, but it is only a matter of time when it will not happen. I hope he does because I want to go raking forever. I'll be out there blueberry raking when I am 95 years old in a walker. That last sentence is a lie because I am NOT living that long. F that. No 95 year old I ever met was sane enough to even deserve to still be alive. However, I might have only met one person ever who was that old. Papa was 92 or 93, Grammy the same, and RIP to both of them because they were the greatest generation. We all suck ass compared to them. Seriously. Myself included. If I can live half a live they lived then that is a win. My grandparents were fucking awesome, both on Mom's side of the family and on Dad's side of the family.
Before I started updating this pathetic excuse of a blog I watched some of the Red Sox - Texas Rangers game (Sox win!) and played Super Mario Wii. I FINALLY BEAT BOWSER OH JESUS HELL YA! That friggin' Bowser level kicked the shit out of me; it took a couple weeks to beat it. However, I didn't play that level or the game every single day. I probably died a couple dozen times overall in his world 8 castle. What a bunch of crap!
Hahahahaha! Winger comes on channel 1928. She's only 17. Great song! I'm pretty sure way back in 1973 Pop was putting the boots to a 17-year old Mom. They got married in 1974, 2.5 months after Mom had turned 18, so the math is obvious. I don't judge them for it at all, though. They've been married for 43.5 years so it obviously worked like a boss. Pop did 2 tours in Vietman and would have done a 3rd if they had let him (just found that out recently) so Pop can do whatever the hell he wants as long it is not raping, stealing, pillaging, and/or plundering. No need to worry about that, though. Pop's idea of fun times is watching the Hunting and History Channels and shooting lots of bullets at random targets. The guy is a legit war hero, something I didn't even know until very recently, and I have nothing but respect for him. I wouldn't be surprised if he has a Purple Heart kicking around in some random drawer in the house.
Thursday, 5-03-18: My old apartment = rented
with relative ease.
Yesterday morning while I waited for the newbies to arrive (3 guys all college age) I put fresh gas and oil into the mower, and I was going to replace the blade. However, I could not loosen the nut that holds the blade on so that was a bunch of crap. The blade is about 3 years old (best guess) and worn pretty hard, but it still has some life left in it. Since I tend to Rambo-mow (run over everything in my way) the blade takes a beating and it was very scarred, rusty, and pitted. I dug out an old file and worked on the blade for a bit, and today when I actually did some spot-mowing the mower fired right up and the grass seemed to cut well so Oh Jesus Hell ya to that! In past years I half-assed getting my mower and weedwacker up and running so it felt good to not be rushed, to take the time, and to actually do it *mostly* right.
I also did a little final cleanup in the basement storage area for that apartment. Never, ever has that area in the cellar been so empty and clean:
Having the four old electric hot water heaters removed makes a big difference, and so far the new gas hot water heater is awesome. Still too soon to know how much extra $$$$$ I'll have to pay by including the hot water, though. It should be less than the extra $160 monthly I'm going to collect, $40 from each of the four apartments. I'm guessing my hot water cost in the warmer months will be $40-$50, and in the winter it will be closer to $100 extra. Bangor gas always charges more per therm in the winter because they are mudda fuckas.
Unfortunately, the remaining 75% of the cellar is a shit-show including the gym area. What a bunch of crap! Once I finish the new gym ceiling I can get that looking nice. Maybe? Hopefully! That ceiling won't be done for quite some time, though. I have yard work and other side-projects that need to get done first. Plus we have our vacation to Mexico coming up later this month. I think the soonest I'd finish the gym ceiling would be June, and I might not even get it all done until the fall.
The tenant who was living in my old apartment above my gym finished his move last Thursday, and he did a pretty damn good job cleaning so all I needed to do was some painting and a few routine little things like replace two old smoke alarms (installed when I lived there in 2005. Still worked, but it had been 13 years and the manufacturer recommends replacing every 10.) I took my time on it all, and I was set up nicely to do my little bootleg video tour and to take a bunch of photos yesterday morning before they arrived with their UHaul van.
^The bar I installed in 2007 is still in pretty good shape. Anazing really considering all the different people who have lived and visited there since. Overall the place has never looked better.
It didn't really feel weird working in my old apartment. Even though I lived in that place for over 14 years it feels like a very long time ago. Almost like looking at something through foggy lenses. I still have many great memories from living there. Lots of great time with Doug, Tommy, Walt, Phil, and Gavin. So funny Gavin actually lives right across the street from that apartment now. I hope the tenants who just moved in treat the apartment well. I gave them all the standard speech yesterday with my three most important considerations mentioned with emphasis: pay rent on time, don't trash the place, and don't piss off the neighbors.
I have no tenants moving out anytime soon. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Odds are someone will spread out and I'll have a vacancy before 2019, but as of right now things look easy. I hope I don't jinx myself by typing that because at any moment I could get a 30-day notice. I have a few apartments with very long-term tenants so if any of them hit the road I'll be busy doing bigger remodeling. I can think of three of my twelve units that would need to stay vacant for at minimum 2-3 weeks for painting, flooring, etc. None of the apartments and houses are in terrible shape, but wear and tear is unavoidable. I have two tenants who have been with me for over 13 years now. I actually inherited them with the building (located by my bootleg office/gym.) That is awesome.