4-30-17: I have to work for a few hours today.
Yesterday was a long day. I put a couple hours of work in at the apartment in the photo below laying plywood before Kat and I headed to Gardner High School where she was the DJ for their prom. I thought most schools did proms in May, but hey better early than never I guess. Kat has a badass setup with thumping sound and tons of lights so it takes a while to set it all up. We didn't get home and bivouaced until around 0100 so it was another long night. Thankfully I haven't had to get up early for anything these past couple days so I did get almost 7 hours of sleep. Not too shabby! I'm Monster-powering up right now so I have a little extra in my system for when I go use the gym in a bit. Half a can usually gives me just enough of a boost to feel fully awake on my gym mornings (3-4 times a week.)
^From Friday. Phil and I opened up a couple walls, and we need to lay new plywood before we can frame up a new living room-bedroom wall and a closet for the bedroom. It will take about a week more to finish, give or take a day. Plus I have another apartment to clean up this coming week. I evicted the chick who lives there because she failed at life. Late rent then no rent = disappear, scumbag! I'm sure she will leave that apartment shitty because she hates me. On Friday morning I was driving by enroute to my gym when she was bringing her dog in. She was back-to, but she stuck up her middle finger at me as she was entering her apartment. What a bunch of crap! HEY CHICK IT IS YOUR FAULT FOR NOT PAYING YOUR GODS DAMNED RENT I AM NOT SANTA CLAUS SO STOP BLAMING ME FOR YOUR EPIC FAIL LIFE.
I have to get the mower and weedwacker going today. I bought a brand new weedwacker months ago. My mower is I think 2 years old, but I use the hell out of it so I'll be happy if I can get it to hold up for all of this mowing season. I do not treat my mower well at all; I run just about everything over and when the mower dies I will just haul on it and go buy another one. I still have to change the oil and put in fresh gas for the mower. Thankfully not every lawn needs a full mow yet; it will be about a week before things really spring to life in all corners of every lawn. I could wait until tomorrow or Tuesday to do my spot-mowing, but Phil is planning to come help me so I don't want to be mowing while he is here to help with more important things. He has been a HUGE help to me every day he has come, and especially Friday when he helped me remove a mountain of demolition debris and lug 18 sheets of plywood plus 5 sheets of drywall and 30 2x4s up to that second floor apartment.
I was hoping to do some turkey hunting this week because the season starts tomorrow, but I have too much work to do up here plus Mom and Dad told me it would be better for them if I wait until mid-month so they can get their house put back together. For most of this month they have had contractors remodeling their kitchen. New walls, new floor, new cabinets, new appliances, electrical, etc. That works just fine for me so I can try to get caught up on the apartment stuff. Then hopefully in a couple weeks I can do a little hunting, get a turkey or two, and then start replacing our own deck. If all goes well by early June I will have much more free time to screw off and to start checking all kinds of smaller things off my to-do list not only for the apartments but also for our own house. I hope!
Friday, 4-28-17: Another week of too much work
and not enough screwing off. Oh, sports!
It's nearly 2200 on a Friday night, and soon I am Jester's-bound until last call. I've been channel-surfing between the Celtics-Bulls round 1 NBA playoff game and the Red Sox-Cubs game at Fenway Park in Boston. The Sox have a 5-4 lead in the bottom of the 7th inning, and the Celtics have a commanding 88-59 lead entering the 4th period. The Celtics were down 2 games to 0 in a best-of-7-game series, but they won the last 3 and most likely will win tonight to advance in the playoffs. I'm not as much of a Celtics fan as I am a Red Sox and a Patriots fan, but I still like to see the Celtics succeed. The Bruins (NHL) lost a few days ago to wash out of the Boston hockey playoffs. What a bunch of crap!
I am munching on Honey Teddy Grahams. Last week was Cinamon. It's good to rotate the Teddy Grahams because all of the "original" 4 taste great. I looked for Birthday Cake Teddy Grahams at the store earlier, but sadly I did not see any there. Either Paradis does not carry them anymore or they do not exist anymore. I hope they exist because they are swell, but they are not quite as good at the original 4 so oh well if they do go extinct. Everything goes extince eventually, right? Except maybe the basic elements like Hydrogen, Helium, and all the other stuff that makes the universe what it is. Cockroaches and alligators seems to defy epochs, too.
My Chamberlain Street duplex is done. I got paid by new tenants, and people spent today beginning to move in. That job took a lot of time over the span of about a week, and Phil put in about 33 hours there alongside me there so that is why we were able to finish with success. That apartment looks great right now, better than it ever has looked. I took some final photos and video yesterday before we put a few finishing touches on and met with the incoming tenants. Here is a quick peek from the kitchen into the living room and far bedroom:
The kitchen floor is new, and the bedroom floors are both new as well. We did a ton of painting, but the thing that took the longest was replacing four interior doors. One each for the two bedrooms, one for the half-bath, and one for the room off the master BR that leads to a small vestibule and to the front entry/exit. The apartment really does look great, and I think the money I spent to do the improvements was money well-spent. I hope the new tenants take good care of the place. If I can get decent tenants to live there and to respect the property then I should get many years of relative low-maintenance on the apartment itself. I hope! I put $1384.12 into that apartment this month so the new tenants better take good care of it.
Phil and I started demolition in the upstairs apartment above where he and I used to live with our good friend, Walter, for a few years back in my "wild" years. By wild I mean I would play AOEII on my computer and drink beer about once a week. Phil, Walter, and I lived together from roughly the spring of 2003-2006. I think Phil moved out in 2006? Hell maybe it was 2007. I think it's awesome that we are all still good friends because when we started living together we were all strangers to each other.
The apartment Phil and I started, holy crispy crap man. That apartment has SUCKED to work on so far. I am attempting to convert it from a 3 bedroom to a 2 bedroom with a larger living room and a larger second bedroom, but the structural components of that buliding cannot be explained. There is a beam in my old apartment that Walter and I once decided to demolish late-night when we had a few drinks in us, and the way that post supports the upstairs is questionable at best. It is ridiculous! Plus look at this monkey-crap:
The amount of things wrong with the photo above is tremendous. That is the floor of the upstairs apartment looking down into the abyss that leads to the celing of the first-floor apartment. Below used to be Doug's apartment, and I have a sneaking suspicion that all the egg boxes stuffed up into there are his doing. Maybe? Hell if I know for sure, but I can send him a txt message to ask him. Yesterday I fucked it away and cut some hot-water baseboard that caused water to leak downstairs. What a bunch of crap! The water was not actually hot because there was no heat, but we still managed to piss water all into the downstairs, and even better was when Phil had one of the scrap pipes and I turned it and water spewed all over his head. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Then I turned it again and even more water went all over him. HAHAHAHAHA. I did not do it on purpose, but it was a solid Stooge-moment. The tenants who now live in our old apartment thought it was funny, too.
I just sent Doug a text message to ask him if he stuffed all those egg and pizza boxes up there. This morning Phil fished two beer bottles out of the ceiling upstairs, and I found some 33-cent stamps wedged behind some trim. Renovating these old buildings is definitely an adventure!
It is hard to tell from the photo above, but structurally things are pwned. It is all bad. I had to fish joist-hangers and scrap 2x6 parts from my shed so we can make it hold the weight of a human. Lots of the plywood already there was "delaminated" which means in laymen terms it was pwned. Cutting all the bootleg plywood out sucked and took up lots of my precious... precious time. Gods damn it.
It is 5-4 Red Sox going to the top of the 9th inning now. Kimbrall is coming in to hopefully close it out. The Sox scored all 5 of their runs in the first inning, and ever since then they have been playing with their dicks. Meanwhile in the NBA the Bulls are pwned. Game over, man! 105-83 is the final score so the Celtics advance and the Bulls are fin. Sorry, Tommy.
Phil and I worked pretty hard today in that apartment above our old apartment. We went on a major supply-run so we are set up for some success in the coming days. I already have tenants for the place so it is in my best interest to get it done ASAP. Every vacant day costs me money gods damn it. Sometimes owning your own business is not worth it because you think about it when you should be enjoying life, but overall it is better than being a slave to the grind. Skid Row would agree. I guess actually I am both because I work for the man during tax season and then I work for myself the the other months. Being a landlord is easy if you do not give a shit, but if you want to have nice places that quality people desire then it requires a lot of effort. One day in the future it will be more than I can handle (F lugging sheetrock up and down stairs two at a time when I am a geezer) but for now I feel like physically and mentally I am up for the challenge. Maybe. Hopefully! The end. Fin.
Tuesday, 4-25-17: "You look like you're
from the Goonies."
I told Jason we all looked like we were from The Goonies. However, we were a less diverse and way more uncool group of kids. I guess Risa could have passed as Data, but Doug was too skinny to be Chunk. Jason and I could have been Mikey and Mouth. Hey, there are a few similarities. Awesome!
I saw this old photo of us Sunday night when Mom texted it to me on my bootleg cellphone. I forwarded it to Kat so I could see it better on her phone, and she was the one who actually estimated I was around 10. She guessed Doug would have been 6-ish since he was missing some teeth. I have no clue when kids fork over their teeth to a tooth deity who does not really exist so I'm glad she possesses more knowledge than me in all areas except for maybe geography and sports. To my wife Paris would be located somewhere between Jumanji and Bolivia... hehehe.
The picture of my siblings, my cousin, and I above is awesome! Failbook sucks, but in this case it is a major win because it supposedly came from Risa's Failbook post. I do not know where she got the photo from, but it brings back many fond memories of us all playing kickball and dodgeball-tag, etc. We had a few "Goonie" adventures of our own back in the 80s, but thankfully only one where the cops ever got called. Hahahaha.
I really do look like such s a dork. What a bunch of crap! I was a dork, too. Hey, if she shoe fits sometimes you just gotta wear it. Looking back I have no regrets. I had a great childhood. We never had the fanciest toys, but we did have lots of woods to play in, a NES, and four channels on the TV, and other kids to hang out with as well both in our family and in our neighborhood. Plus, as an added bonus, my dorky childhood makes for great bootleg Crap site fodder! I make fun of everyone on here often enough so it's only fair I crap on myself from time to time.
Phil is on the way so I have to hop off this turd-heap in a minute. It is 0655 now, and he will be meeting me at the gym around 0740. We did the same thing yesterday morning, lifted some weights then worked on Chamberlain Street. Yesterday was a frustrating work day over there because replacing four doors took way longer than I expected and hoped. What a bunch of crap! Only one of the four doors is installed, but now we should be set up for success today. I hope! Today will be Phil's 4th day in 5 days of coming up to help me so I owe him bigtime now.
Sunday, 4-23-17: The Running Man, 80s music,
and Chamberlain Street.
I hadn't seen The Running Man in a few years, and I never knew (or remembered) that a John Parr song called Restless Heart closes out the movie at the end credits. That song is awesome! I can't believe I do not own that song. What the hell? What a bunch of crap! I just tried to download the song from the Interweb, but I get a message that says this:
Thankfully my awesome DJ wife is currently, as I type this crap that no one will ever read, getting that song along with Rainbow's Street of Dreams and ABC's When Smokey Sings to add to my epic 80s music collection. Reason #632,876 why my wife is 100% awesome. I could say she is 110% awesome because 100 is not enough, but real math people would tell me to STFU.
Kat and I had a very nice overnight stay in Portland for our 2nd wedding anniversary. I got her flowers that the cats knocked over in 2 minutes. What a bunch of crap! We stayed at The Embassy Suites right by the airport, but the hotel was not loud from the sound of departing aircraft. The hotel was pretty nice and had a hot tub so bonus for that. Plus their breakfast was damn good and they had free drinks at the bar for happy hour (we did not drink, though.) We did our anniversary getaway on our actual April 19th anniversary day, Wednesday into Thursday.
I had been fighting a cold for the first three days of the week, but then on Thursday I lost the battle and I was wasted like Doc-J and 8-Ball from Full Metal Jacket on Thursday night. I crashed early, and I was afraid I would have to cancel my work on Friday. I woke up around 0100 late Thursday night/Friday morning feeling like 10 pounds of shit stuffed into a 5 pound bag. What a bunch of crap! I was able to bivouac after staying up for about an hour, I slept fairly well, and amazingly enough I woke up at 0630 Friday morning feeling much better. I was far from 100%, but I was well enough to function and to work a full day.
Friday was an important day because it was go-time for the apartment business. I have two vacant apartments right now, and I have a long list of work to do to both of them. Phil was planning to come work with me so it was especially important that my precious... precious body healed enough so I could work. I did NOT want to cancel because I knew we could get a lot done together.
Heart These Dreams is a great song. I should own that one, too. OH AWESOME KAT IS LAUGHING. Animotion Obsession just came on and Kat facetiously said "I'll marry you if you tell me the band who sings this song." That was a reference to June 28, 2014 when she was over for a late-night "after party" fire and I told her I would marry her if she could tell me the name of the band. She knew the song but did not tell me the name, but I married her anyway and I thank for gods who do not really exist that she said YES when I asked her to be my wife.
So Phil came up Friday morning, a one-hour drive from the Waterville area where he and his wife currently live. They actually moved back to Maine last June when she took at job at the hospital there. Since then he's been considering purchasing rental property, and I even went down last fall to look at some places with him. Having Phil help me was really awesome; he and I haven't worked together in years. I helped him for a few days out in Michigan in maybe 2012 when he was starting to renovate his own house so now he thinks he owes me, but really I owe him. The MI trip was fun, and it helped me at a time when I needed to get away for a bit.
We started by doing a little prep, taking some measurements, and scooting over to Home Depot to buy $600 in paint, plywood, doors, and a few other supplies. I already had flooring at the apartment so we were stocked up and ready to go. Our first project was removing old carpet from the two bedrooms. Look at this carpet:
^What a bunch of crap! In all fairness I did tell the guys who just moved out that I would be replacing the carpets so they didn't need to clean them. The carpets were about 9 years old and it was definitely time for them to go. The end. Fin. They were not abused, but they were just all worn out and looked bad. In a rental property I'd call 9 years a win for those carpets. They were cheaper carpets, but even more expensive carpet would have worn out. Nothing lasts as long in a rental.
I planned to replace the carpet with a laimnate wood floor, but the subfloor was the original pine boards that were not ideal for a subfloor so we sheathed the entire floor in both bedrooms with 15/32" plywood:
The subfloor in both rooms needed plywood. Here is what the subfloor looked like in the other bedroom:
If we had not installed the plywood the floor would have ended up coming up in spots, warping, tearing, and looking like shit within possibly just a few weeks. We also got all the plywood installed in that bedroom Friday, and yesterday we did most of the bedroom flooring plus we painted all of the two bedrooms. One bedroom is 100% done:
The mop-board/white baseboard trim looks great now that it is painted white. I was worried it would look like crap no matter what because it is old and worn, but the paint made a huge difference. Painting the closet door white was a good call, too.
I do already have the apartment rented, but I still want it to look nice for the new people. Phil stayed overnight Friday, and we worked around 16 total hours over the two-day span. (9 Fri, 7 Sat.) Phil has become a very good carpenter thanks to all the experience he gained working on their Michigan home. Plus he is smart and learns fast. It was nice having someone help me who is not only my friend but also one hell of a worker. Thanks to Phil's help I am about 1.5-2 days ahead of schedule, and I didn't have to work today on the place. Phil plans to come up tomorrow as well so if all goes well I should have that apartment done by Wednesday. Awesome!
I'm still stuffy, but I don't feel sick like I did a couple days ago. I was able to play racquetball today, and hopefully I can use the gym and go for a few jogs this coming week. I have a lot of work to do still, but if I manage my time like a boss and get some help from Phil then we can really get a lot done this week. I'm ahead of schedule for once! That is about as rare as finding a chest of buried pirate dublooms in my back yard, and I owe it all to Phil.
Wednesday, 4-19-17: The last few hours of my
JH job last night.
Next was some college kid, low 20s, whose parents claimed him on his taxes. He didn't even bring me a w2, but thankfully he had it in his cellphone so I could at least see it. I had him email it to my jh email, but it never came in. All I wanna know is why? Why would you go to a tax office and not have a physical copy of the papers you need TO FILE YOUR FUCKING TAXES. The kid was going to owe the IRS because he made $23k from his job (not bad for a college kid!) but his parents claimed him, but he didn't even have the money to pay me for the tax prep cost. OMG GUY SERIOUSLY?! Our cost was pretty low, too. He had to have his parents wire money into his bank account so his debit card would be approved. Gods damn it!
Next was a lady who was nice enough, but she was all confused. She had a few statements showing a retirement pension that she started to receive last year, but she swore she had everything she needed because there was her SSA-1099 for her social security income received. She had just retired last year, and she could not understand that social security and pension income are not the same thing. She then said she thought she knew where the form was so she would run right home and get it for me, but when she came back an hour later she gave me only the rest of her social security statement (the instructions part, not even the part that had tax numbers on it.) What a bunch of crap! I could not finish her tax return because she did not have the 1099-R form.
Next was a seemingly nicer older couple who patiently waited about 30 minutes until I got free. They had a couple w2s, no kids, and social security income. Last year they paid some local accountant around $125 to do their taxes (or so they said) and my price was going to be $174 so they were all bummed out about that. We do EZ tax returns for $48 (federal only) so they did not understand why the price was so much more, and I could not get them to understand that the social security income needed to be reported and forced them to use a 1040-A and not a 1040-EZ. I told them I was not going any lower on my price because there was only about 3 hours left to the deadline and that was the going rate so they hit the road. OMG GIBLETS DO NOT COME IN AT THE LAST MINUTE AND THEN CRY WHEN THE PRICE IS TOO HIGH WHEN THE PRICE IS NOT REALLY TOO HIGH CONSIDERING WHAT SOME OTHER PLACES WOULD CHARGE. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!
I finally got a little break between about 1900-2000 to take care of some office wrapup and say goodbye to some of my co-workers over the chat-thingie that we have. Then some guy came in all pissed off, smelling like booze, asking where his $50 WalMart gift card was. He said it did not come into his email like it has in years past. I did not even do his taxes, he had them done at one of our other local offices, but I looked him up and saw he got a $75 price discount instead of a $50 gift card. I told him no gift card becase he got $75 off (a better deal!) but he was not happy with that and he demanded I call my boss right now. I told him sorry I was not even his preparer and he could go back to the office where he filed or else call my boss himself. I gave him our toll-free number and told him he would likely not get my boss that night because it was so busy, but good luck and sorry things didn't work out the way he wanted. Disappear, scumbag!
I had some other guy pop in around 2000 asking when I closed. His chick still needed to file so I said no prob, but get this she was in the WalMart but did not have her stuff with her so they would have to run home and get it and then bring it in. That would take 45 minutes (so he said, probably really 1.5 hours in real-Giblet time) so I told him best of luck but I had to close at 2100 so I didn't think they would make it back in time. Meanwhile I got a phone call, some guy who needed to file but didn't get out of work til 2100, so no soup for him either. OMG PEOPLE. If I wanted to I think I could have stayed at work til close til midnight doing taxes for these last-minute assholes. However, I was mentally done and wanted to split ASAP.
Not five minutes later some guy came in to file, and he had his girlfriend with him who also needed to file. By then it was only 45 minutes til closing so that sucked. A lot. As an added bonus he was missing two w2s so that sucked for him. I told him I needed all four of his w2s to do it right, but he said the other two were only a little bit of money, maybe a few hundred, so fuck it I documented everything in our system and did his damn taxes. His was easy and only took a half hour, but his chick had two kids so I knew that would take me until 2130-2145 to 100% finish and file.
I JUST WANTED TO GO HOME TO SEE MY SWEET PEA BECAUSE I WAS ALL DONE. MENTALLY FRIED, TOTALLY CHECKED OUT. Working a 12-hour day doing taxes really is all bad. You reach a point where it is hard to focus on the numbers and mistakes get made so I hope I did good work all the way until the end. I tried, but it was hard. Not only did I have Giblet after Giblet coming in, but I also had some of my other friends and acquaintences asking me last-minute questions ove txt message so it was starting to wear my ass right out. Plus I was fighting a cold so I was not feeling my best physically either.
At 2045 I was ready to start my final tax return, 15 minutes before the office was supposed to close. All she had was $1700 in income for the ENTIRE FRIGGING YEAR. OMG CHICK. However, because she had 3 kids she was going to get a $800-$1000 refund so I could not in good conscience tell her to GTFO. Yeah our gov't is Santa Claus to poor people and I don't even understand how America can even function with this kind of tax code. Thankfully I was smart and I asked her if she had her kids' social security numbers with her (they were both new to JH) to which she looked like a deer in the headlights and admitted she did not have them. SWEET JESUS YOU FUCKING IDIOT CHICK YOU JUST MADE MY NIGHT BECAUSE I CANNOT FILE YOUR SHIT WITHOUT REAL SSNS FOR YOUR KIDS SO SORRY BUT YOU GOTS TO GO. No soup for you!
That was my last customer. The end. Fin. I got out at 2057, and I ended the season with around 294 paid returns done. Hopefully I made a clerical error and I do end up at over 300 so my bonus goes up, but I don't think that will happen. If I wanted I could have done a couple more yesterday (boss wanted me to!) but F that it was time to shut it down and focus on other things. The end.
Tuesday, 4-18-17: LAST DAY AT JH!
I have done around 325-350 tax returns this season, but "only" 305 of those have been paid returns. Unfortunately, out of those about 15 will not count due to various reasons (back child support, student loans, IRS thinks you're dead, etc.) so my real right number at this moment is about 290. Last year I was around 220-225 so that is a HUGE jump up in returns done. This office is up substantially in returns and revenue from last year, and I say hellz yeah to that. However, it has burned me out so I am glad it is almost over. A few people quit before the season ended for the usual BS reasons so we have been spread very thin and I have not had help most of the time from any co-workers. Yesterday I was very busy here by myself, but I made it work and ripped out a lot of tax returns.
My goal was 222, and I am at 290 right now so that is awesome. It is a little bittersweet knowing that if I was 100% all-in all the time I would have ended up over 300, but I can live with that. Sometimes I had to leave early for various reasons (mostly the apartment business) so I gave a few that would have been mine to co-workers earlier in the season. If I had gotten to 301 my bonus would have jumped by $1800, but I do not have regrets about narrowly missing that next-level target. I might do 2-4 more this afternoon, but I have no chance at doing 11 more to reach 301. As is my bonus now will be much, much bigger than it was last year. I can use that bonus money to pay off most of my expiring no-interest Home Depot and Lowe's balances so that is great.
Speaking of paying, I need to give $500 to the IRS. We actually owe $1244, but I'll just give them $500 and wait for them to send me a bill. I've done that the last few years and it has worked out fine. I don't like owing the IRS, but I'd rather let that balance ride a bit so I can pay off some other more pressing debts like property taxes and the aforementioned Home Depot and Lowe's accounts. When the IRS sends the bill there will be a little interest on there, but it won't be a horrible amount and paying the IRS $20-$30 in interest sure beats paying Home Depot and Lowe's much more than that if I let the no-interest deals lapse. One of my special financing purchases would have over $1000 in interest added if I let it expire at the end of next month. Allowing that to happen truly would be a bunch of crap!
This JH job cost me the chance to do a few fun things like the Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race, but the money has been good so I have no regrets from a financial standpoint. The water was good and the weather was awesome for the canoe race this past Saturday. Thankfully Phil and his brother got to use my canoe in the race so I had to sorta live vicariously through them. I don't know exactly how they did, but I know it was fairly well. I was stuck in the tax office so I could not see any of the race. What a bunch of crap! It's been 3 years since I did the canoe race, and it's been nearly a decade since Phil and I did the race together.
Tomorrow is a very special day for Kat and I. It's our 2-year anniversary! We plan to go to Portland to hang out, to do some shopping, and to relax. We will spend tomorrow night in Portland then come home with a side-stop in Skowhegan Thursday around midday to meet with one of Kat's wedding clients. After that it's back home and time to WORK. I have a list seemingly a mile long for the bootleg apartments, and the serious work for the rentals begins Friday.
My first project is tearing up flooring and getting ready to paint at my Chamberlain Street duplex. The first-floor apartment is actually vacant now because the tenant moved out a couple days ago. (I had them pay 1/2 month rent for April.) The apartment is in decent enough shape and I already have a deposit and an approval for the next tenants, but the carpets are worn and need to go. I already bought new vinyl-laminate-wood flooring for both of those bedrooms so I can jump right in. However, I do need to pick up some paint and a few other supplies still. Maybe I will clock out and do that this afternoon if it stays slow in the tax office, but most likely I will wait and do it Thursday or Friday morning.
I actually plan to pay Phil to come up Friday to help me, and I already told him that he is welcome to stay overnight and work Saturday as well. I can do all the work myself, but Phil has become a very good carpenter and we never get to hang out enough so I am looking forward to it. With his help I can stay on or slightly ahead of schedule; I want to get that apartment done within one week so I can move on to the next one.
After I finish Chamberlain I have to do a little carpentry in a 3BR apt in the building where my office and gym is located. It's actually the apartment above my old apt there. It is a nice apartment, and I have had a great tenant there, but two of the three bedrooms are tiny and pathetic.
The photo above is several years old and does not show the exact dimensions, but that bedroom and the one on the other side of the wall and closet in view are both only 9x9. Good for a kid, but not so good for an adult. The tenant there now has been awesome, and she made it work. However, I remember when she and her roomate moved in back in Oct of 2014 they asked if I could make it a 2BR instead of a 3 because the rooms are so small. The kitchen and living room area is awesome, open, bright and spacious. Unfortunatly, those two bedrooms are just too small. I've had others walk away from that apt in years past as well because those two bedrooms are so tiny.
The wall separating the two bedrooms should not be too hard to remove. I hope! However, I do have to rework the baseboards for heat, I'll have to do all new flooring, and there will be some electrical that needs to be moved as well. Once I get in there I'll have a much better idea how I want to tackle it, but I know it will take several days or more to do because I need to frame, mud, tape, sand, paint, etc.
I actually already have new tenants ready to go for that 3BR. Awesome! The tenant there now is a teacher who plans to move out this week, but she is paid through the end of April so I can't hold it against her if she doesn't move out this week. I do think by week's end this week she will be moved out because this is her spring school vacation week and she is very reliable. Having her out within the week would be perfect because then I can finish Chamberlain and jump right on over to her former apt. If I can get that done in about a week then that should put me on schedule to start my next 3BR in May, but I don't want to write about that right now because I am tired of thinking about it. Thinking about all the work I have to do in the next month = what a bunch of crap!
One thing is for sure, I need to make more time to go turkey hunting this spring. The season starts May 1st so no matter what I need to set some time aside to go hunt with Dad and Jason. Hopefully around May 2-3 I can take a couple days for that. I also want to make sure I don't spend many days working on the apartments into the evening. I've done enough evening work at this damn JH job, and I enjoy having quiet relaxing evenings with my awesome wife on the days when she doesn't have to work.
Awesome I am down to my last 7.5 hours now! I've been pulled away from this bootleg update a bit for work-related things, but I have not had a customer in here for a couple hours. I can hardly wait for 2045 tonight when I cam walk out of here for the last time until the next tax filing season!
Monday, 4-17-17: ONE DAY LEFT.
Wednesday, 4-12-17: Hey cool, I won prize that
I don't think I will use.
I just Googled this tablet so I can find out what it is worth. Looks like Best Buy has it for $119.99 plus free shipping:
Here is the description of my new tablet "Put the power of the Internet in your pocket with the Samsung Galaxy Tab E Lite. A bright 7-inch touchscreen lets you browse websites or watch videos in virtually any light. With built-in parental controls, the Samsung Galaxy Tab E Lite helps you monitor your children's usage habits as they explore apps and games."
Right off the bat I can tell the two of you who actually read this bootleg site that I won't be using this tablet to monitor my kids since I don't ever plan to have kids. I was around kids enough in a previous relationship to know that I do not pack the gear required to be a parent. F that! Her kids were kind-of little assholes most of the time, and I was happier when I did not have to hang out with them. Kids suck.
This thing is too big to be a cellphone, and it is too small to be a computer. I do not want to put the power of the interweb into my pocket. If anything goes into my pocket it will either be money or a pet mouse gods damn it. However, I don't think I will get a pet mouse because then it would probably poop in my pocket because everyone knows mice poop about 1000 times a day. What a bunch of crap!
I guess I could use the tablet to play solitaire, but I have my laptop computer for that. Oh, plus I haven't played solitaire in years. Majong Tiles maybe? Nope, ain't happening. I guess I'll haul on this tablet and use the money to buy something better like new gym sneakers. I did open the tablet, but I did not turn it on and it still has that plastic-cover-thing so I guess I could still sell it for $80-$100. Maybe? Or I can give it away as a gift.
In one week I am done with Jackson Hewitt for the tax season. I will have a small amount of paid online training to do this spring and summer so I won't be 100% done, but the hard part will be over. I did get Lucas to cover the last half of my shift yesterday so that was awesome. It was 75 degrees and sunny so I had time to grab some propane for the grill, go for a jog, and have a relaxing evening. We were going to grill Monday night, but I am a nincompoop and let the propane run out. No propane = no BBQ so on Monday Kat had to cook our chicken on the George Foreman Grill. What a bunch of crap! Thankfully the grill worked just fine once I got propane so we could cook hot dogs and bratworths last night. Brats taste good but are giant grease-balls so I don't eat them too often. However, hot dogs are terrible for you as well but that is okay because I don't eat them that often either.
Monday, 4-10-17: Time to start some spring cleaning.
What a bunch of crap! All those cans and bottles are going to the redemption center, and I need to start chopping up that maple. We had a tree out front removed last fall, and I never had time to split it all up for firewood. Of course we ran out of firewood, but thankfully we didn't really need it. We did have anough firewood to use the fireplace a couple or three times, but the fireplace is not something we need to use in order to stay warm. The new baseboards Bruce installed last November did well for us through most of the winter.
There really is no excuse for my letting the yard get like that. Most of the past 4 months was a frozen tundra so all that crap was buried. Once I clean it up I need to keep it clean. It will get messy for a brief period next month when I stage the remnants of our back deck there, but I'll try to time that with the free dump week so I can haul it the hell out of here ASAP.
Hopefully this afternoon I can go for a jog and test out my new TOMTOM RUNNER GPS watch. I have the watch all set up so I think all I have to do is put it on and go for it. After that I'll clean up the back yard a little, and then I need to do a few other things before I see if the grill still works in time for supper. Today will be a great day to BBQ some chicken, but the grill is old and last year I had to beat on it a little to get it working properly. What a bunch of crap! After 5 months on the deck all winter I'm sure the thing will struggle a little before it starts working. However, I did keep it covered so maybe it will be okay. I hope!
Okay I'm back and it's almost time to bbq some chicken on the grill. I just "ran" a 2.33-mile loop, and it was a shit-show. I got a stomach cramp not even one mile in so I had to walk a little. What a bunch of crap! I did jog a slow pace for the majority, but it was not pretty. The weather has been fantastic all afternoon so that is a plus. I got rid of all the cans and bottles, 3-4 months worth, and score an extra $29.75 for all of that ($26.75 because I gave her a $3 tip for dealing with that bullshit.) Kat scooped up what is no joke close to 50 pounds of dog shit from the back yard while I did the bottles. I tried to shovel away dog shit during the winter, but most of it ended up freezing and getting buried under the snow. What a bunch of crap! LITERALLY.
People use the term LITERALLY too often gods damn it. However, in the statement above it feels so right.
My TOMTOM did good work during my "jog." My pace was an abysmal 9:19 per mile. TERRIBLE. Oh well, gotta start somewhere. We also got the dogs to the park and I lifted a few weights earlier so overall not bad. Now if only the grill works well so we can do our chicken outside...
We got up to 69 degrees earlier before it dropped a bit after a few clouds and a sea breeze knocked it back. The weather really was great for a jog despite the stiff headwind for half the jog, but I am just not in good enough cardio shape. Oh well. Tomorrow will be 73 so I am hoping I can get out of work early enough to take another spin around the block with my new badass TOMTOM.
EDIT: THE PROPANE TANK WAS EMPTY SO NO BBQ FOR US. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! I could have gone to the store to get more propane, but that would have taken too long gods damn it. My bad.
Friday, 4-07-17: More work hours for me, and
a new Teddy Graham product.
Kat bought me some Teddy Graham soft bakes to try last week. She's the best wife ever! (She's going to be my only wife ever.) There are two different flavors of these 'roided-up soft bakes, the one pictured above and a chocolate version with white cream-like filling. These Teddy Grahams are soft like a Twinkie, but unlike a Twinkie they have only a small amount of cream filling in the center. They are very big and meant to be eaten one at a time. Traditional Teddy Grahams are small and meant to be eaten by the handful.
I have eaten one of each kind of soft-baked teddy Graham, and both times I was not impressed. They don't taste too bad, but they are not so great either. I actually think a Twinkie would taste better. There is too much cake and not enough filling, and it leaves you wanting more. Overall I do not plan to buy these again, but I definitely won't let the ones we have in our house go to waste.
I rate the new soft-baked Teddy Grahams a 5 on a scale of 1-10, and I think it's only a matter of time before these bootleg things appear at Marden's in the clearance-priced grocery store reject aisle for .99 a box ($2.50 now I think?) These stupid fucking things are not worth the money, and they are not that great. What a bunch of crap! they will end up in the Teddy Graham fail-zone much the same as the oatmeal, banana, strawberry, and apple Teddy Grahams have all seemed to disappear. Hell, maybe even the Birthday Cake ones are kaput now. I don't know, but I hope not because those ones aren't too shabby.
It's okay because there are 8g of whole grain so eating these does not make you a monster.
Sometimes this JH job can be a real drag, and today so far has been no exception. I've been here for 2.5 hours and have not had one phone call or talked to one customer. No one has even popped in to ask a question. What a bunch of crap! Oh well, we've already done more business this year than we did all of last year with 11 more days to go until the finale. I work 8 more days after today, but I wish it was zero more because I have blown away my goal and just want things to end. My goal was 222, and I am around 252 right now so score bigtime. I probably will do a bunch more, but I have no chance to get to 301 before the season ends. (201-250, 251-300, and 301-350 all trigger different final bonus amounts on an increasing scale. My bonus should be awesome this May, and I can't wait for that.
Unfortunately, a couple more people got done state-wide so they had to pull my help, what little of it I was expecting, and now I have to work more hours. What a bunch of crap! I almost got roped into working half of Monday, but for now I still have that day off. I really want Tuesday off since it will be 70 degrees outside, but there is almost no chance of that happening. Thankfully the season is almost over. Only 8 work days left after today! (Last 3 work days are 0900-2100. 12 hours. What a bunch of crap!)
The Red Sox played their season opener Monday, and they started with a win. They're 2-0 so far, but the season is so young that it barely counts. Still 160 games to go. They have a good core of young players this year, but David Ortiz is retired so someone will need to step up to replace his bat in the lineup. Their big off-season get was pitcher Chris Sale from the White Sox. Sale is famous for throwing a tantrum in Chicago and cutting up all of the White Sox' throwback uniforms last year. HAHAHAHAHA. He said the uniforms were a bunch of crap so he hauled on them. It is funny, but a tad unprofessional as well. Hopefully he can do great in Boston for the Red Sox this year and beyond.
Thursday, 4-06-17: My new TomTom. Bye bye Circuit
Bye bye $104.49 including sales tax. Will it be a Benji well-spent? I sure as hell hope so. Online reviews rate the watch around 3.5 out of 5 so not great, but not terrible either. Some complaints include stupid shit that I don't care about like the fact that it can't sync to a cellphone or the fact that the battery "only" lasts a few days. Hey, I can live with that because my jogs rarely last more than 30 minutes and I don't plan to use the thing as a regular timepiece. I only plan to use it for jogs.
The watch has built-in GPS so it supposedly can keep track of my pace, distance, and a few other things. When Phil came up to visit last September he and I went for an evening jog and he had a GPS watch. Hell if I know the brand he had, but I thought it was the neatest thing and I put it on my list of things to acquire. Now, half a year later, I finally have one!
The final inspiration to buy a GPS watch for running actually came from my Sweet Pea. She bought me a FITBIT for Christmas, but that thing turned out to be a SHITBIT so I brought it the hell back and got store credit. Maybe the FITBIT is a good product, but it needed some bootleg dongle thing to connect to my stuff and I did not have a dongle (besides the one in my pants hehehehe) so after a few minutes of trying to connect it to my laptop PC I gave up. What a bunch of crap!
I hope this TOMTOM does not need a dongle to connect to my bootleg computer. Maybe I do not even need to connect it? I know the FITBIT needed to connect in order to set up. if the TOMTOM needs a dongle I will be wicked pissed off and I will throw it into the trash. However, if I did throw it away I would fish it right back out because F that it cost over a hundred bucks gods damn it.
If all goes well maybe I can take my GPS watch for a test-spin tomorrow evening. I am scheduled to work until 2000 tomorrow, but I hope to leave earlier when my co-worker rolls in at 1600. I'm scheduled until 2000 today as well, but if he shows up and doesn't mind closing I'll also leave early today. I love having an excuse to leave early because working a 10-hour day sucks when it's not busy the majority of the time.
I would leave early and try the TOMTOM tonight, but it is going to rain and be a cold 38-40 degrees. What a bunch of crap! I did go for a 2.33-mile jog Monday PM when it was decent weather (sunny and 48) but other than that the weather has been a giant turd lately so I haven't been able to get much cardio in. Plus I am fighting a cold this week so that hampers me, too. What a bunch of crap! I actually did use the elliptical this morning, and hopefully it is the last time I need to use it until next winter. I'd like to start jogging outside because it is a much better workout. I need to be a cardio MACHINE so I don't turn into a powder-puff disgusting fatbody.
There are 12 days left until the April 18th tax-filing deadline. Kat and I have our taxes done and filed; we owe $1244 to the IRS and $68 to Maine. That's less than we owed last year because I found an extra $10k in writeoffs for the business from all my Home Depot and Lowe's purchases, receipts I hadn't logged into the record yet until I saw we were going to owe a few grand and realized I needed to dig deeper. Maine should already be paid, but I still have to send the IRS some loot before the 18th.
Including today I have 10 more work days left at JH. Three of them will be full work days open to close because I am flying solo, but hopefully the other 7 I can leave early if it's not busy later in the day. I can hardly wait for the season to end. I love the job [mostly], but I have other projects on the list and I don't want to have an office job when the weather is nice. I'd much rather be working on the apartments spring-fall and doing outdoor things like landscaping, lawn-mowing, blueberry raking, hunting, camping, hiking, etc. I always feel so cooped up after a long winter in this state.
Tuesday is supposed to be around 70 degrees outside. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Unfortunately, I work 1000-2000 that day so nevermind. Oh well, it happens. Plenty more nice days still to come this year when I will be able to enjoy them.
They're tearing down the old Circuit City building. The place has been vacant for years; I dont know when they officially went out of business, but it must be at least a decade. Once or twice the Halloween Store rented there for a couple months, but other than that there has been nothing. It's actually a little sad seeing the place get razed because I had some good times working there. That is the job that truly made me realize how much I love getting commission. Actually, I guess blueberry raking for Art when I was around 12 years old gave me a taste for what a commission (piecework) job feels like. Now all these years later I am at a job where commission (bonus) is a big part of my pay. Oh Jesus, hell ya!
I will miss the Circuit City building when it is gone, but I will not lose sleep over it. I worked there from the end of 1999 until February 2003. Or was it 2002? I'm pretty sure 2003 because it was over 3 years I was there selling computers rockin' out with Windows '98 and back then a 3megapixel digital camera was the shiznit and sold for big bucks. In 2002, my final year working there, I made over $42k for the year. Oh Jesus, hell ya! I think that year I made over $500 in one day on BLACK FRIDAY, the day after Thanksgiving. Sadly the CC business model got crushed when BEST BUY came to town and that is sad but life. I was not going to make that job a career anyway, and I am better off in life doing the seasonal work mixed with slumlording anyway.
Before Circuit City went out of business they laid me off because I was making too much money. No, seriously. Chris and I, the top-paid two salespeople in the store, got the axe. It came out of nowhere and was totally unexpected. After that there was no more commission, and everyone who remained got paid an hourly rate. They gave me a letter that they wanted me to sign, and this is what I gave them:
AAAAAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! OMG. I forgot I did that until I saw it in my bootleg archives. Hilarious!
Now the building looks like this.
Each passing day The Nothing grows
stronger, and soon there will be only emptiness where there was once a
thriving retail superstore. That place is getting hauled on, and I am
a little sad to see it go. However, I remember how pissed I was when they
hauled on me so they did deserve to go out of business.