(Last updated: 8-18-2017)
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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 $8.42 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, 8-18-17: I finished a lot of the downstairs,
and we played musical rooms.
Kat helped me put the finishing touches on the two rooms downstairs Wednesday, and we moved some stuff down there that very same day. I am pleased with how things came out. the ceiling is only 80" and I can't do anything to change that short of major, costly remodeling. However, I did replace the old ceiling, I installed some very nice recessed lights, I removed some old half-closet, half-bench-thing, and I installed a new floor. Many other little things also needed doing in order to clear pipes, wires, etc. Here is the end result:
I also installed a 6-foot baseboard that I plan to have Bruce tie into the existing heating system for the cellar loop. We never had heat in that space before so in the winter it was electric space heaters or freeze for whomever was living down there. Being freezing cold and having to use a space heater = what a bunch of crap! Hopefully this baseboard heats that entire area well enough. I got the higher output baseboard and the room is 14x11, give or take. I guess if it doesn't work well enough then I can add another one. Keeping it nice and warm down there will help us heat the upstairs, too.
I also painted the trim a white semigloss, and I had to hide all the pipes and wires that feed the new addition. Hiding those was a pain in the arse, but Kat did the hardest part of it by neatly using white fabric and white tacks on the underside to cover all those pipes. I would have boxed them in, but it would have been nearly impossible because of the angles needed so fabric was a good solution that actually looks nice thanks to my awesome wife. I had to taper it from left to right to account for that window and to allow headroom for getting down the stairs.
The stairs were carpeted, and so was all the floor down there, but I hauled on it all. Removing the carpet from the stairs was a HUGE pain in the ass because they used 10000000000000 staples to attach the carpet. What a bunch of crap! It took a LONG time to remove it all. Thankfully both Dillon and Kat helped with that.
I was going to leave the carpet in the bedroom, but the right thing to do was to rip that all out and do new flooring so Kat and I hit up Home Depot with a $25 off coupon and bye bye another few hundred bucks for the new flooring, the baseboard, and a couple other things. The bedroom now also looks a lot nicer and there is zero carpet down there so bonus for us. Carpet in a basement = what a bunch of crap! Carpet just about anywhere sucks because it holds so much dander and debris. Now the only room left in this house with any carpet is our bedroom, and I plan to haul on that later this year as well.
Debbie and Dillon were supposed to move down to the basement when I finished the remodel, but Katherine saw it and she really liked it so she ended up taking it. I gotta say I never saw that coming! She lived down there before Daniel moved in, and I don't think she liked it too much. However, now that it is nicer I can see why she would want it. There is more space than her bedroom upstairs, and I think the upstairs is a better fit for Debbie and Dillon anyway. Yesterday morning I helped Katherine move downstairs, and yesterday afternoon we helped Dillon move the rest of his stuff upstairs. Then that evening Kat and I moved a bunch of her stuff into the studio that had been occupied by Dillon and Debbie for the past 1.5 years. My wife finally has her studio. AWESOME! It was epic moving day yesterday playing musical rooms here in this house. The work was all worth it, though.
This morning I installed some shelves in Kat's studio. Right now the paint is drying on those shelves, and hopefully on my next bootleg update I can post photos of that area of the house. However, right now I am going to get off this bootleg thing and bivouac for a bit. Both Kat and I got up way too early this morning, and tonight we will be up late at Jester's. Kat was up around 0445. OMG! I slept in compared to her, but I still got up at 0545, shovelled in some chow, and then got right to work helping her get her studio moving along. Hopefully tomorrow we can finish setting it all up.
Saturday, 8-12-17: A hilarious wedding photo
from last week. Oh, a garden and the downstairs.
While I was talking to Mom I painted some of the downstairs. Here is what it looked like as of a couple hours ago:
Tonight I painted the trim while, and I painted that hideous red wall area my standard bootleg properties light tan. Oh, three cats got down there. What a bunch of crap! I recovered 2 of the 3, but Mittens will not come out so fuck her she can bivouac down there for now. That can can seriously eat the peanuts out of my sheeeeeeeeiiiiiiiitttttt I did try to get her back but she ran away and hid. I hate her. A lot. If all goes as planned then tomorrow I can finish the painting and start the floor. That room might be done Monday, but then I will have a few other things to do so it might be midweek next week before it is ready for Dillon and Debbie to move into. I want it to be nice down there. Not perfect, but decent.
Kat is at Jester's, and I am heading there shortly. First I am listening to The Sweetest Victory but Touch. Rocky IV soundtrack like a boss. Great song! I sang it to myself last night when I went for a jog, but I don't think it helped my time. 24:44. Fair enough for the first post-raking jog. I also played racquetball earlier against Gav and neither of us played great. It was still a good workout, though. I lost 2 games to 1 because Gavin is better than me.
Mom talked a lot about the wedding from last week. Like, a lot. I wish I had more photos to share, but all I have is this one:
Manktown = hilarious guy and the definite life of the party! (In the middle wearing the wedding decorations.) I think it is awesome that Jason had a Marine Corps dress theme for himself and for his former Marine pals. Jason's friend, Mike, did the best-man speech that was way long but so epic that it made up for its borderline obnixious length. I've seen a lot of weddings thanks to my hot wife being a DJ, and by far Mike's speech was the best one I've ever seen at any wedding.
Poor Kat, she came down to the wedding looking like a million bucks but she could only stay for a couple hours. Then, to add insult to injury, she was not in any of the photos. What a bunch of crap! Doug kinda moped around seeming like a sad panda, and I guess he can't drink anymore due to health reasons. He is huge because he lifts weights a lot, but he does not seem happy. He moved to KY from Tuscon like 3 days before the wedding so I don't think that plane ticket change was cheap. Hopefully he likes being Kentucky Fried more than he liked living in AZ. With him hard to tell.
Our garden is pumping out food now. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Look at this thing:
The tomato plants are really growing. We've harvested one squash and two cucumbers so far. The tomatos are going to really pump 'em out soon. Check this out:
They are green now, but soon they will be red. They have already outgrown those metal round cage-things that we put them in. Beefeaters I think? they get big and are good for burgers and sandwiches.
The Red Sox beat the Yankees tonight and have a 4.5-game lead over the "evil empire" for first place in the division. I did not watch much of the game because it was on several hours ago when I was doing other things. So far this month the Sox have been playing well and I hope they save their best play for late September and for the postseason so they can win another World Series. The team is flawed but is better than the other AL teams right now so overall no complaints from this guy here.
I guess I am done. Fin. Time to go to Jester's and to hang out. Maybe I can get that fuckface cat back upstairs before I leave, but if not oh well. I don't even like cats that much but I married one. Where's my psychologist gods damn it?
Friday, 8-11-17: Back to the Friday night routine...
I only worked on the downstairs for a little over an hour, but in that time I installed 3 out of 4 recessed lights and they work like a boss. It is brighter than daylight in that muther with the three installed, and after a 4th goes in Dillon and Debbie will need SPF-50 just to exist in that formerly weird room that is now a room that is not-so-weird. I bought recessed LED lights, but I did not realize that I needed the housing-thingies for the lights so I had to go to Lowe's today to buy them. Bye bye $63 for 4 of those. What a bunch of crap! Oh well, the new lights are LED and the old ones were the KWH-sucking ones so in the end we will win. I hope.
I bought 4 of those lights for about $15 each and thought I was a king, but it turns out you need a $15 each housing-thing for each one so nevermind it is really $30 per light. However, the lights are dimmable as long as my half-chad ass I can figure out how to install a dimmer switch like a boss. I think I can. Maybe? Hopefully. I want to get that downstairs renovated ASAP so Kat can have her studio up here. The sooner she has her studio the better because that will free up a lot of precious... precious space in the house. Plus we can set up all the DJ gear and I can train for a wedding that I have to DJ on the 26th. That's only 2 weeks away and I need a lot of training. Two weeks...
I rocked that ceiling like a gods damned boss tonight so tomorrow in the day I can finish it and then tomorrow night when Kat is at work I can start the floor. If I can finish that space by Sunday or Monday then bonus Dillon and Debbie can move down there and it will be nice and Kat can have her precious... precious studio and then the dream of the blue turtles will be fulfilled. That last sentence makes no sense unless you are a Sting fan, which I am. Not a die-hard fan, but I like him well enough. Hell, I don't even own that album and I don't know what it is about. What a bunch of crap!
^All I wanna konw is why? Why are there no blue turtles on that album cover? I don't understand and it is weird so I am going to find a blue turtle gods damn it.
It does not make sense that Sting would dream about blue turtles unless he used heavy narcotics. Was that his Heacy Fuel that Dire Straits sang about in 1991? I do not know, but that song rocks and I want to hear it right now. I have not heard it since about 1700 when I was on Wilson Street heading to Lowe's. I should karaoke that song tonight. J/K I should not karaoke anything because I have a medical condiion called NFT (No friggin' talent.) Hehehehe. It's not really funny I don't know why I just did "hehehehe." What a bunch of crap!
I am out of coffee brandy so I just did a shot of Fireball. In hindsight that might have been unwise, but I will take my chances. Fireball is pretty good, and thankfully I am a lover night a fighter so whiskey does not make me want to beat the shit out of people.
Last week at this time I was bivouaced, but before that I went over to Mom and Dad's to visit with Uncle Kevin, Uncle Jimmy, and Uncle Greg. Then Aunt Susie showed up so bonus for that. I have not seen Uncle Jimmy and Uncle Kev in 20+ years so seeing them was awesome. Plus Greg and Susie are great. All of Mom's siblings except for Uncle Brian came back east not only for Jason and Holly's wedding but also for the scattering of Grandma and Grandpa's ashes on Cape Cod. Part of me thinks I should have gone to the Cape with them to be a part of the ashes-ceremony, but then I realized that the right thing to do was to stay in Warren with Dad while Mom and family was on Cape Cod. Dad's health has been poor so it meant a lot to Mom that someone could stay with Dad... just in case. Poor Dad, he seems like an old man now and he is "only" 68 so I hope he bounces back. He worked so hard in his life that he deserves a few golden years before he truly becomes an old man. All the years of lead exposure running the firearms program, and whatever the hell happened to him (ALL BAD) in 'nam = bad set of circumstances. being eaten by ticks because he is a hardcore hunter does not help either. I hope Pop's health improves because we all need him around for a long time to come.
I was gonna write about Jason and Holly's wedding from 6 days ago, but F that I have places to be and people to see (MY HOT WIFE.) I am out of here, chumps. Drop and give me 25 you scum-sucking maggots!
Thursday, 8-10-17: My raking 2017 is over. Oh,
It was a good raking season, but it was not a perfect season. We raked in three different fields. First was Payson's field, a field we have done many times and a field that is usually at least decent. Unfortunately, this year Payson's was a shit-show of a field with a sparse blueberry crop. We spent four of my twelve raking days in that garbage field, too. What a bunch of crap! I still made money, but not nearly enough for the effort spent on those days. The price of blueberries from chemically treated fields (non-organic) has plummeted in the past couple years so the owners had no incentive to do important things like spray fungicide and make other investments that lead to a better crop. It seemed they didn't even care... whether or not they cared. What a bunch of crap!
Thankfully Cliff scored us a great field in Union not far from where we camped at Mic Mac. We were skeptical when we heard of the 7-acre lot because it is an organic field. In our minds organic = a bunch of crap because without pesticides, fungicides, etc the weeds can take over and can make the raking shitty. Thankfully the owner, a guy who went to high school with Cliff decades ago, put money into the field so it was actually a great field to rake. We were supposed to rake it all in three days so we worked extra hard, but it actually took us five days to rake the whole thing. Cliff has a very small crew, and Glen was too injured to rake much so that set us back a bit. Glen is a good raker, but he is 58 so we aren't sure if he will ever be able to rake again. However, Cliff is 67 and he raked over 500 boxes this year. OMG. (Cliff raked the second most of anyone!)
After the crap field and the awesome field it was time to finish the season at Cliff's own Palermo field. Cliff has owned that field for a number of years, but he has always hired it out to Mexican work crews. He did not have good things to say about his Palermo field so we expected it to be a toilet, but it was actually not bad at all. He has 16 acres there, and he only had 3 days to rake it all so thankfully Cliff had us only rake in the "gravy." The best parts. However, it is not in my nature to gravy a field so I raked a lot of stuff that other people would have skipped. So did Gavin on his last day on Sunday. Nevertheless I still made a good wage rate in the Palermo field so overall I'd call it a success. The only drawback of his Palermo field is the distance. 18 miles from Mic Mac, 28 miles from Mom and Dad's, and 52 miles from home. 18 miles is not bad on a highway, but on those bumpy and winding back roads it takes a while. 45 minutes from the field to Mom and Dad's each trip Sunday PM, Monday, and Tuesday AM.
Gavin and I have this raking thing pretty much locked down. We've learned from many past mistakes such as letting raccoons and other animals haul off half of our food, not having cover at camp for when it rains, etc. Every year for the past few years Gavin brings a bunch of burgers, a large tub of tuna, and many other supplies. I bring sides, most of the booze, condiments, hot dogs, and we take my truck most of the time to commute to the fields so it is a fairly even split. The cost of the campsite is 50/50 so that makes it much more affordable as well.
The tuna lasted almost a week, and we had just enough left for two sandwiches on its final day. I made my sandwich and passed the last of the tuna to Gavin. Here we are with Joey at lunch in that organic field last Thursday:
If you look close you can see that plastic container on the ground with the last of the tuna in it, and by then the tuna was no longer edible. When Gav was making his sandwich he used his leg as a table for the bread. He spread the tuna on the bread, and when he reached over to grab the top bread piece his open-faced tuna mostly-made sandwich fell off and face-down into the road there. It was hilarious to see the look on his face because there was no saving most of it. He tried, though. Then he scooped up the ruined tuna that by then looked like this:
Camping was interesting but mostly enjoyable. The first weekend there the campground was 100% full and we were crammed right in like sardines Friday and Saturday nights. The site next to ours was way too close, but our neighbors were cool. Their kids and their dog were quiet. Helps I slept with earplugs in most of the time, just in case. By Sunday the place emptied out, but on Tuesday night our Mexican migrant blueberry raking neighbors partied until around 0400. They were LOUD. they had a mini-fridge that I think they turned into a pinata late-night. It was their last night there before they moved downeast or something so they made the most of it. It had earplugs in and I still heard them. What a bunch of crap!
It was a very dry season with no rain until the final night of our camping Saturday night. We got deluged on by heavy thunderstorms when I got back to camp from Jason and Holly's wedding. We even got a little wet under our canopy because it rained so hard. Sucked having to pack up camp the next morning with everything being soaking wet, but oh well a small price to pay for what was another overall great raking season. Payson's sucked ass, but the final two fields made up for it in a big way.
During raking season the apartment business was easy. I had no major issues come up, and as an added bonus I didn't even have to mow any lawns. I came home for an overnight last Wednesday PM thinking I would have to mow a couple lawns on Gilmore, but they are not really growing so score one for me. I was able to collect some rents, do my banking, and spend time with my Sweet Pea before heading back to rake.
Also during raking season was a major family milestone. Jason and Holly finally got married! It was a nice wedding; I got to see family whom I've not seen in 20+ years. I'll write about that next time because now I have things to do so am out like a fat kid in dodge ball. Goonies never say die!