9-04 10-04 11-04 12-04 1-05 2-05 3-05 4-05 5-05 6-05 7-05 8-05 9-05 10-05 11-05 12-05 1-06 2-06 3-06
4-06 5-06 6-06 7-06 8-06 9-06 10-06 11-06 12-06 1-07 2/07 3-07 4-07 5-07 6-07 7-07 8-07 9-07 10-07 11-07 12-07 1-08 2-08 3-08 4-08 5-08 6-08 7-08 8-08 9-08 10-08 11-08 12-08 1-09 2-09 3-09 4-09 5-09 6-09 7-09 8-09 9-09 10-09 11-09 12-09 1-10 2-10
3-10 4-10 5-10 6-10 7-10 8-10 9-10 10-10 11-10 12-10 1-11 2-11 3-11 4-11 5-11 6-11 7-11 8-11 9-11 10-11 11-11 12-11 1-12 2-12 3-12 4-12 5-12 6-12 7-12 8-12 9-12 10-12 11-12 12-12 1-13 2-13 3-13 4-13 5-13 6-13 7-13 8-13 9-13 10-13 11-13 12-13 1-14 2-14 3-14 4-14 5-14 6-14 7-14 8-14 9-14 10-14 11-14 12-14 1-15 2-15 3-15 4-15 5-15 6-15 7-15 8-15 9-15 10-15 11-15 12-15 1-16 2-16 3-16 4-16 5-16 6-16 7-16 8-16 9-16 10-16 11-16 12-16 1-17 2-17 3-17 4-17 5-17 6-17 7-17 8-17 9-17 10-17 11-17 12-17 1-18 2-18 3-18 4-18 5-18 6-18 7-18

"What department is the worst one to work in?" -Me to Katherine regarding her grocery store job
"They're all terrible!" -Katherine


Friday, 8-31-18: I can build most of a house, but installing a window shade...
All I wanna know is why? Why can I pretty much build a house (NOT the mechanical systems including the plumbing, electrical, and heating) and struggle so much to install a $5 window shade? For the past two weeks (Two weeeeeekkkkkkkkkkkssssssssssss for Tommy!) we have not had a privacy screen for our bathroom winder because Sully, one of our asshole cats, can't take the pressa and he eats the cord to the mini-blinds. What a bunch of crap that is! There are 9 cats living in this house, and nine of them can eat the peanuts out of my shhhhhheeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiiiiiiiittttttttttttttttt. If my awesome wife reads that I am getting castrated, but that is how I feel. F that cats. The dogs are awesome, though. I didn't want to get a third dog because it is too much work, but nevermind a third dog is great Groot is wonderful.

I gots that shade installed because the Red Sox are in a rain delay and I am on puppy-patrol until Jester's in a bit. Groot HATES being locked up in a crate, but alas she will have to go into the crate soon. She is just too young to free-range-roam here in the hacianda. All I wanna know is why? Why did I call the house a hacienda? We are not in Mexico. However, if we were in Mexico we would be having a blast right now because I love the Riviera Maya. best vacation spot, ever. Oh, we planned our next vacation, but it is not Mexico. I'll have to write about that soon, but as a nugget for the two of you who actuallt read this pathetic excuse for a website one of our plans involves attending a live Smackdown WWE show. Oh Jesus, hell ya!

My bootleg phone that is over four years old and borderline obsolete was down to one bar of power (one bar = LOW) so I dug out the charger, but the charger was severed. What a bunch of crap! Fortunately I have a USB charger so when I plugged it into the PC it started to charge but then it wanted to upload stuff. There is nothing to upload because my phone is simple gods damn it! Speaking of upload, I have four photos to post of our latest property. Check this one out:

Note the white paint on the trim at the top. I started white trim, and that took me between 2-3 hours to do. Not much done, but scraping, caulking, etc takes precious... precious time. The trim now is a peeling, bootleg, hideous green. I am glad to have the white done where the new electrical service will connect because F painting that when the power is live there. Today was a PERFECT weather day for painting so that is why I spent some of the time outside. I think when the weather is perfect all next month I will focus on the exterior, and when the weather is not perfect I will work inside. I'd like to have the back deck and at least half the siding finished by the end of next month. Having the top trim 100% white painted on all four sides would be great, too.

^What a bunch of crap! Seriously. It is all garbage and all heading to the dump tomorrow. Brewer only has the landfill open the first and third Saturday of each month so tomorrow I will haul on that shit. I might not get rid of all of it, but I will dispose of most of it. Having a toilet in the yard = BOOTLEG. Hehehehe.

^What a difference not having all those trees there makes! Bye bye precious... precious money for the tree removal, but in my opinion it was money well-spent. Dave and his helpers did a great job removing three white pines and part of that maple. Even though the pines are still on the ground no worries because one of our friends has a saw mill and wants the pines to mill into board lumber. If things to well he'll get all that tomorrow. I hope!

^Those pines are BIG. Once they are gone I can start the deck, but only on good weather days. Thankfully most Septembers feature awesome weather so I can work outside a bit. I ordered the siding two weeks ago (Yes Total Recall reference!) so that better get delivered ASAP gods damn it. New siding and a deck back there will really look awesome.

I guess I don't want to write on this bootleg site that no one will ever read much more. I have channel 1928 on, and this song is terrible. It is Endless Love by Lionel Richie and Diana Ross. It is a bunch of crap! They should haul on Diana Ross and just play Dancing on the Ceiling. Hopefully the next song is better, and hopefully the Red Sox are not in a rain delay anymore so I can catch some of that game. They are in Chicago against the White Sox and down 3-0 in the third inning so maybe if the game does get cancelled due to rain that is not all bad at all. However, I'd rather watch the game so bring it on! the end. Fin.

I want a donut now.

AWESOME DON HENLEY THE BOYS OF SUMMER 1985 FROM BUILDING THE PERFECT BEAST. I owned this on cassette, and it is a great album. If you don't like Don Henley then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more. I argue his solo work is actually better than when he was the front-man for The Eagles, but that is a close call...



Wednesday, 8-29-18: Another early morning.
Revielle was 0511 this morning when Groot started to stir around in the bedroom. So far she is doing great, and she has "only" had one accident in the house so far. On Sunday she wizzed on the bathroom floor. What a bunch of crap! Oh well, for a 12-week old dog that ain't bad at all. She got her shots at the vet Monday, and she weighed about 16 pounds and got a clean bill of health. She seems comfortable here in her new home, and she plays well with Copper and Tiger Lily.

In hindsight getting a third dog wasn't the best idea, but Kat really wanted one and I want her to be happy so after saying "no" off and on for months on end I finally agreed. I do think Groot is an amazing dog, and all of our dogs are great, but sometimes I get frustrated when I have to balance work with managing the puppy. Plus there is no sleeping in because she wants to get up early. No problem there because I like getting up earlier anyway, but the timing of getting a puppy while I am trying to rehab an entire building is not the best. Oh well at least this is a great time to train her because it is not cold outside at all. In fact quite the opposite. Right now at 0600 it is 71 degrees. OMG! Today will be a brutal day for working on that building because it will be so hot and humid. Working on a second floor in this heat = what a bunch of crap!

I only expect to see "Sparkys" at the place today doing more electrical work since Dave and his tree helpers have other obligations the next couple days. I gotta give those tree guys a lot of credit for working all day yesterday in the 90-degree heat. So far they have all three of the big white pines stripped down pretty well, and I'm hoping by the end of the week they can get those three pines 100% onto the ground so I can have a friend haul them off to his saw mill (they look good for board lumber) and then I'm free and clear for the deck and siding. There is also a maple that needs to be cut back, but the pines are the top priority because they are more in the way than the maple is.

Today I'll do as much as I can upstairs. Bruce hopefully roughed-in the drains and venting in the upstairs bathroom and kitchen so I can install sheetrock where needed and get some mud on those walls. Here is the bathroom now:

^Looks bootleg! Needs a little insulation by the new window; I installed a smaller window than what was there before for two reasons. First a bathroom does not need a huge window and second it needed to be smaller so we can install a tub surround and a shower. Currently there is no shower, only a tub. That old metal tub is still in good shape so we can keep that there and just do a surround and the plumbing. I already bought the toilet for that bathroom, but I still need a vanity, tub surround, and faucet hardware for both the tub/shower and the vanity. Hope Depot is having Labor Day sales now so either today or tomorrow I'll go spend some more of our precious... precious money on more supplies there. I'll probably also buy flooring and countertops, but that all depends on the promotions and what they have available. I don't need flooring for a month, but if there is a sale I'd jump on it.


Tuesday, 8-28-18: Trees = coming down. Oh, more heat.
I've been front-loading the contract work over at our new property, and on most days at least someone besides me has been there working on the place. I've had Ben and John over there quite a bit recently working on the new electrical system, Travis has helped a lot with demolition, Bruce and Kevin spent a lot of time there Friday through Sunday starting the plumbing, and yesterday Dave showed up with his helper (whose name I do not know) to start taking down trees. A lot is getting done there without my needing to be tied to the place. Oh Jesus, hell ya!

I'm hoping Dave shows back up today to do some more tree removal, but he did say he has other projects as well so maybe I won't see him today. I didn't expect him until September anyway so it's all bonus having him appear already. I really do hope he shows up because once I get the three big white pines cut back then I will be comfortable doing exterior work including siding install and the deck out back. However, I don't have either the siding or any decking boards so no big rush. I did order all the siding back on the 16th through Home Depot pro desk; I should call them today and ask then when they plan to make that delivery.

^Yesterday morning a bit before lunch. Progress! That propane tank is obsolete and, if the gauge is correct, it still is about 80% full. Hopefully I can get some kind of a credit for that from the fuel company or else keep the tank there and move it over to the garage next year when we are ready to do that renovation. (Most likely would install a propane heater in the garage, but still a long way from a final decision on that.)

I haven't done very much carpentry on the building over the past week or so because coordinating with and talking to the contractors takes up a lot of precious... precious time. Supply runs also eat the clock. I do feel like I am still on track with both time and budget, but that could easily change fast. We're at just under $20,000 spent so far (including what is on the Home Depot and Lowe's cards) and still have to drop $3500 for the new furnace and $2750 for the tree removal in the very near future. Bruce for the plumbing and Ben for the electrical will be a few more thousand so already I can see passing $30,000 by this time next month, if not sooner. Flooring and other materials will easily be another several thousand dollars, too. After that there may be some sizeable costs for landscaping/paving/earth work for the parking areas. That *maybe* can wait until next year, though. Same for the garage. I really don't want to cross over about $40-45k spent this year so we have reserves for the winter months that are sure to suck. A lot. The Farmer's Almanac is predicting another brutal winter (what a bunch of crap!), and they are correct more often than not.

I did get some relatively good news yesterday, though. I met another neighbor whose name is Doug, and he has lived in the neighborhood for 44 years. WOW! He said the roof was replaced about a decade ago so that should mean I have some time left on the thing before it starts to fail and leak. I know the rubber roof does not leak now. Not having to drop a few grand on a new roof right away will be a huge plus. He said other than the roof the family who owned it prior never really did anything for repairs and improvements. (OBVIOUS!) He said his mother lived there for a long time with him, and she lived to be 101 years old. OMG.

Today and tomorrow are looking like 90-degree days. What a bunch of crap! I bought a 20-pound bag of ice and a lot of Powerade/Gatorade to put over at our property for today and tomorrow. Yesterday and Sunday I had little 5-pound bags of ice that melted too fast with the Gatorades. On Thursday we drop back into the 70s and I won't have as many contractors crawling over the place so hopefully I won't need to buy so many drinks. I don't have to provide cold drinks, but I think it is a nice thing to do for the people who are all working hard over there. So far all my helpers and contractors are doing great at the place.

Today I plan to frame up a good part of the downstairs so Ben and John can rough-in more wire. I might also need to scoot over to Home Depot for some more supplies, and I hope to play racquetball this afternoon. I haven't played Mike 1v1 at Rball on a weekday afternoon since before blueberry raking last month due to our busy schedules. Mike actually hired Dillon at his place of work so that is pretty awesome. Mike was hurting for help and was working 12+ hour days there so now that Dillon is trained hopefully that frees up Mike a bit more and we can get back into playing Rball on a weekday afternoon once a week and then we can play on a weekend as well. I like playing twice a week, but I have had some off-and-on tennis elbow lately so maybe I can't keep that pace. I hope I can, though!



Sunday, 8-26-18: Nine years ago today.
I've been doing a little paperwork, just paid the Lowe's card down to a zero balance for the first time in seemingly forever, and I was thinking maybe the last time I had that thing at a zero balance (normally I roll the special financing promotions so I don't pay much interest) could have been nine years ago when I closed on my Holyoke Street house. It was exactly nine years ago, August 26, 2009. That place was a shit-show. It was a bunch of crap! The interior was really terrible with plaster and lath walls, old wiring and plumbing, etc.

From the archives of this bootleg site:

Wednesday 8-26-2009: $34,258.66.
I have a bank check for a bit over $34k in my room right now. I'm going to spend it in just under two hours. Finally, four months later than originally planned, I am going to close on this bootleg house:

I paid a $3600 deposit back in the winter so my overall cost for the house including closing fees, taxes, title insurance, and all that other crap should be just over $37,000. Not bad for an ENTIRE HOUSE in a decent location with a newer roof and newer siding. Thank you, shitty economy. Someone even made sure the lawn was mowed! I sure as hell didn't expect that. (The photo above is from last year.)

I think my estimated budget for the remodel at that house was $30k and a timeframe of 4 months, and I came pretty close to hitting that mark. I remember after 4 months I just had a few smaller things left to do, I had it rented and got a $300 deposit, but then the people who put down the deposit disappeared. What a bunch of crap! So I had to find other people to rent it, and I didn't actually have it occupied until February of 2010. Oh well on that at least I got to keep the $300 deposit. I worked at FedEx during that remodel so I would work on the house in the morning for 4-5 hours, take lunch, and then to go FedEx to run the outbound for 5-ish hours.

That Holyoke house has been a good addition to the business. Even though earlier this year the proverbial wheels fell of the bus over there when the fridge, hot water heater, and furnace all had major issues within a couple weeks of each other. Plus I was working full-time at JH so that sucked. A lot. Bye bye loads of precious... precious money for that shit-show. What a bunch of crap! I might sell that Holyoke house when the tenants who live there now move out. I have a lot of equity in that place now, and the fund from that sale *might* pay off our home mortgage in a couple years...

Thankfully that Holyoke St house did have a newer roof and new siding. Unfortunately, on the place I am overhauling now that is not the case. The age of the roof is unknown, but the roof has not leaked at all and it still seems okay. The siding is obviously epic fail asbestos that cost a shitload. New vinyl siding is about $3000, but I have to still buy more for the garage so when that time comes bye bye $2000 more. I dropped $5000 at Home Depot back on the 16th, and I was just on my Home Depot account online when I realized somehow that purchase has a 24-month no interest financing deal attached to it. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Didn't expect that one and am glad to have it. Gives me more spending power for this fall, and if things go well maybe I can also do the garage before the heart of winter sets in.

Both Lowe's and Home Depot are having Labor Day sales so I will have to take advantage of that in these next few days. A couple more purchases on no-interest specials will be a huge plus. Bruce and Kevin will be at our building today doing more plumbing; they were there Friday and yesterday, and I framed in most of the downstairs bathroom area and what will be my office while they did the rough-in plumbing work.

^There will be a working shitter in there today, but no walls ahahahahahaha! I can't install the walls yet because I need some wires. I could throw some sheetrock there, but F it I don't care that much. I still have a little framing to do, and all that electrical crap is going to get hauled on once Emera feeds the new line from the street to the house. Yes that is a plastic toy donut on that light pull chain. Old houses = adventure times!

Little Baby Groot is doing great so far after 1.5 weeks here. She has yet to have one accident in the house, but she has wizzed in her crate a couple times. What a bunch of crap! We have not crated her much at all, and we think she peed in there because she was so worked up. She HATES that crate, but every now and then it will be necessary. Amazingly we don't need to crate her at night, she just sleeps on the floor with Copper and Tiger Lily. We did have Groot on the bed with us for the first few nights, but then she figured out how to hop on down and she seems to prefer the floor. Strange if I were her I'd want the bed!

Yesterday she bivouaced in the shower. Hahaha. She is learning commands and responds to her name now more often than not.



Friday, 8-24-18: $16,133.39 spent so far.
So far I've dropped a tad over $16,000 on the new property that we bought last month. We actually closed on the place just over four weeks ago, but due to blueberry raking it has been just under 3 weeks of actual work there. So far in that time I've only put in about 60 hours (give or take), but I have hired out a shitload of work so I feel like a lot has gotten done. Hopefully I will get some more hours in on the place next week; this week we had a camping trip and I had to epic mow all kinds of lawns. Pretty much everything needed mowing over the past few days.

The budget for the place is $50k so we are about 1/3 through that already. The front end is always more costly when the mechanical systems get adressed. Electrical, plumbing, and heating cost the most. Tree removal is yet-to-come for $2750, and a new furnace is $3500 still to come. Bruce just started the plumbing today so there goes a few more grand on all of that, but it is not a complaint because it is necessary.

When I rolled in today around 0715 that place was abuzz. Bruce was there with his helper, and the asbestos abatement company was there with a few people getting ready to don abatement-suits. I took some pictures today, and here is the side yard mid-morning:

^Neighbors must have been like "WTF IS THAT SHIT?!" Looks like the movie ET when the government realizes there is an illegal alien hangint out with Reces Pieces and some slapnut kid. I don't know why I made that reference because it barely makes sense. I have not even seen that movie since probably the 80s. What a bunch of crap! Some movies are always on TV (cough:Shooter:cough) but others like ET are NEVERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR on TV so I just don't watch them. Ever. I would watch ET if it ever comes on TV, though. I always thought is was a great movie.

The Red Sox are getting decimated tonight, 10-3 in the 8th, so I put it on channel 1928 and now it is Simple Minds Alive and Kicking. Great tune! Of course Simple Minds will forever be known for that Breakfast Club song Don't You Forget (About me) but some other their other songs are really great, too.

I'm one drink away from drunk so I may ramble. Where is the next photo of our ghetto? Okay guy finds it now.

^Note the random door that leads to The Nothing. Don't walk out that door or else you will be pwned. I decided today just before rball that those two lower windows can get cancelled so a nice deck and steps to the ground can get installed there. However, I need those pines gone before I do a deck so I have to wait until next month since my tree guy was booked out a few weeks.

The asbestos removers did a fuckin' awesome job. Seriously. I had to part ways with $2430 of our precious... precious money for them, but they were worth it. That asbestos siding is HEAVY so good riddance to it. Taking it to the dump myself would have sucked. A lot. Plus maybe the dump here would not have even accepted it. I guess this company trucks it down to some abandoned coal mine in the midatlantic and buries the hell out if it. I don't even care... whether or not I care where it goes. I am just glad it is gone from our property!

^Oh we care about the money plenty, but where that old bootleg 68-year old siding goes nope don't care! Thanks, Morla from The Neverending Story.

I give my bootleg seal of approval trophy to County Abatement; if you ever have asbestos give them a call and they will take care of you. It won't be cheap, but F it they do good work. No I am not getting paid for that endorsement because only two people ever read this bootleg site anyway. Hehehe.

^That debris off to the right is not asbestos, it is my own little trash-heap. Off to the left at the side of the building is where all the asbestos crap was. Also note the new electric panels that Ben, the best electrician, ever, has installed. Ben is a great electrician and Bruce is a great plumber so I have my A-team in action for this one. Can we stay at or under budget? Remains to be seen, but that $2430 asebstos removal certainly takes a chunk. What a bunch of crap that is!

I am feeling pretty good about the downstairs for the building pictured above. I have a really good idea where everything is going to go now, and I can do some framing down there this coming week. I hate to abandon the upstairs for the downstairs, but Ben is free next week so I need him to rough-in as much electrical as possible before he leaves the state again for another lucrative job. I think he has most of the upstairs done so if I can get a huge chunk of the downstairs done then bonus for us for the coming weeks. I think I can have the upstairs done and ready by the end of next month, but mid-October seems like a more reasonable goal so I can work on siding, a back deck for the "door to nowhere", etc. It is pretty funny having some random back door that leads nowhere right now. Seems bootleg, but will make lots of sense in a few weeks when there is a nice new deck there. I hope!

Alright turds, all two of youz, I am going to go to Jester's now. Goonies never say die! The end. Fin.



Friday, 8-24-18: Early start today. Oh, the camping trip that sucked.
It is 0600, and I have been up for about 45 minutes. I get up before 0600 quite often lately, and since we often bivouac earlier it mostly works out. I guess. Maybe? I don't feel too tired, but a nap this afternoon would be nice since I'll be up late tonight for Kat's usual Friday night karaoke gig at Jester's. However, I might not take a nap because I will be very busy for at least the first part of today. I have Bruce coming around 0730 to start plumbing at our new property, the electricians will likely be there at some point, and I have the asbestos abatement guys coming today to haul off all my bootleg old siding that is all over the ground.

I finally decided to call the abatement guys yesterday and to hire them to clean up my mess for $2430. Spending that much on cleanup is a total bunch of crap that completely blows out my dumpster/trash portion of the remodel budget. Gods damn it! I heard these guys are pretty good, and the guy whom Bruce knows only does commercial stuff for much more $$$$ so I just went with the quote from last week. I need to get it done because it is an eyesore anyway. The more I can check off the list earlier in the project the better. I'd like to get the heavy-hitting stuff done this month and next so I can spend most of October and beyond picking away at the interior finish work. Things like plumbing, electrical, and heating are top priority right now, and thanks to the DEP so is asbestos removal...

I haven't worked a full day yet at our new property. Not one. What a bunch of crap! I have so many things that seem to pull me away, and this week we took a camping trip midweek that I thought would be fun but that was not very fun. We were supposed to leave for camping Tuesday morning and come home yesterday morning, but there was a lot of rain in the forecast for Wednesday, our one scheduled full day there, so we all made last-minute changes so we could leave Monday late afternoon and come home Wednesday instead. In hindsight that was a good plan because it did rain quite a bit in western Maine Wednesday.

We stayed at Mt. Blue State Park in Weld, the same place I once stayed with Gavin and a couple other friends (Aaron and Chris?) either right before or right after our senior year in high school so that was either 1992 or 1993. I remember we hiked Tumbledown Mountain, and I remember we had all kinds of fun. Unfortunately, this time around there was no hiking and not too much fun. Our newest family member, Baby Groot, was easy to deal with. Maybe because she is still so small? Too bad Copper and Tiger Lily were total assholes who required all kinds of management, and that pissed me off. I couldn't really relax and enjoy myself because we had to keep dealing with those two dogs. What a bunch of crap!

On Tuesday morning we went to check out nearby Coos Canyon, and that is a neat little spot. The dogs made that part of the trip difficult for me to enjoy as well. After lunch we went down to the beach to let the dogs do some swimming; there were only a few people there (perk of a midweek trip less humans taking up precious... precious space), but we still stayed near the edge by the tree-line with the dogs. Baby Groot didn't really want to swim, but she did get wet and seemed to have fun playing there.

^Groot's first swim! Copper still won't swim. What a bunch of crap! He will only wade around up to his chest. Tiger Lily loves to swim, though.

^Baby Groot (who will be just regular Groot when she is no longer a puppy) spent most of her time with the tennis ball instead of swimming. Unfortunately, we only had about 10-15 minutes at the water with the dogs before some turd-face complained and the park ranger told us to geeeeeeeeeeeeeeettttttttttttttt ooooooooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuttttttttttttttttt. We were in an area where the dogs are not allowed, and when the ranger came by we were far away from other people on a nice grassy area and not bothering anyone. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

I guess the dogs can only swim there at the boat launch, and they have to stay in the tree line. It makes sense when the beach is packed full of people, but hardly anyone was there and we weren't bothering anyone. We even had them swim right by the edge at the trees so all I wanna know is why? Why did we have to get booted from the beach area? Epic failer. Society sucks at least 50% of the time.

Also epic fail is the fact that we slept terribly due in part to the dogs, but more-so due to the fact that our air mattress had a slow leak so by the middle of the night we were sinking in and getting eaten by the thing. Added on top of that shit sandwich is the fact that Kat was mad at me because she thought I worked too much Monday and didn't help her pack for the trip. Nevermind the fact that I had work in progress and I was still all done with everything by 1500, 2hrs early. Plus I was in a hurry so I slipped and fell off my friggin RR Tie retaining wall when I was mowing that pain-in-the-arse hill over at my gym/office/old apartment property. What a bunch of crap! That hurt, too. I bounced right off a curb and into the street and got scraped up. I didn't even get all my mowing done so yesterday I had to spend a couple more hours on it. I still have more to mow today, and then hopefully it will be at least a week before I have to mow again. The lawns aren't growing as fast anymore, but summer ain't over yet because next week will be in the upper 80s/90 for a couple or three days and the rain we got Wednesday will cause some more grass to grow.

So in hindsight the camping trip mostly sucked. The only good thing was being able to spend time with the family. I definitely don't want to go camping again anytime soon, and next time we will have to just pay to throw the dogs in the kennel when we do camp because they are too hyper and difficult to manage.

I gotta get off this bootleg site that no one ever reads and look at the Home Depot webpage. With Bruce coming today I need to figure out what I am doing for a hot water heater for the property. I'm thinking natural gas direct-vent since I don't think the chimney is lined. I could do electric, but F that with a common bathroom in the commercial-use first floor space I don't want to have to pay for electric hot water or have the upstairs tenants have that on their bill. Only one 40-gallon tank should be needed for that entire property since the downstairs bathroom won't even have a shower. Just a crapper and a sink that will get very light use. Hopefully I'll be able to pin that down a bit more once I can talk to Bruce about it all. I'm sure he will agree that a gas unit is the way to go, though.

Hopefully next time I can post a few more photos of the property. The upstairs exterior kitchen door is installed now, although it is just tacked in place with a few 3" screws. Only one more upstairs window to install, too. Awesome! I left that window out on purpose so we could throw debris out the hole there and into the dumpster, but now the dumpster is hauled on and most of the upstairs demolition is done so I can plug that hole back up.



Saturday, 8-18-18: Asbestos abatement quote came in. OUCH.
I got an email from one of the few asbestos abatement contractors who service this area and who are acceptable for the DEP. As expected it ain't cheap:

Small print and probably hard to read on this pathetic excuse for a webpage, but I asked them for three different prices so I have all my options available. Full removal of everything = $6850 after their $800 discount. OMG WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! I ain't paying that much, F that. Just the basic minimum cleanup that is required is $2430, and that is actually lower than what I expected it to be by a little. Looks like my getting up on the ladder and scraping those three sides myself paid off bigtime. Just to scrape the front and remove that debris is $1860 so with that math I can see that had I hired them to do the entire building, all four sides, I would have been out a shitload more money.

In hindsight I should have worked Sunday last week because then I would have had the entire building scraped of that old and brittle asbestos-laced siding. Getting busted and shut down by the DEP early Monday afternoon was a bunch of crap! Oh well you live and you learn and hindsight is usually 20/20. I texted Bruce and asked him to get me in contact with a guy with whom he works at UMaine so I will most likely get a second quote before I decide which way I want to go with it all. There isn't that much debris on the back side of the property so I might just move that to the sides and maybe that would save me a few bucks as well. However, I am not supposed to move any of it so maybe I won't do that. The DEP guy never even looked at the back as far as I know so I could probably get away with it. Maybe. Hopefully!



Friday, 8-17-18: Photos of the new property and a Fleetwood Mac song that is unfamiliar to me.
Channel 1928, time 2216, Red Sox just won 7-3 at Fenway against the Rays, and Fleetwood Mac Seven Wonders is on the 80s station now. This is a great song! I do not know this song so I should look it up. Is this the same album as Tell Me Lies? Most of the Fleetwood Mac songs that I know are from the 70s, but they have some damn good 80s songs as well. Guy looks and sees the song is from 1987 album Tango in the Night. Yes, it is the album that also has Little Lies and also Everywhere. Great songs! If you don't like Fleetwood Mac then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more.

I was just talking to Dillon, Debbie, and Travis, and it seems they definitely want the apartment at the building we just bought. Oh Jesus Hell Ya! Travis has helped me a lot at the place so far. I pay him cash, and he deserves every penny of his pay. He is most of the reason the dumpster looks like this right now:

(Electricians in the photo working on the service. Yes, all that crap on the ground between the dumpster and the building is the asbestos siding that the DEP shut me down on earlier in the week. What a bunch of crap! That 40-yard dumpster is almost full with demolition debris, but so far there is no asbestos in the thing and I plan to keep it that way. I don't need Casella Waste billing me $5000 for asbestos remediation from the dumpster. That would be a bunch of crap!

I have awesome contractors helping me on this project so far. Even Kat came and did some demolition. How cool is that? She owns 50% of the place, but if we're being real this type of thing is my wheelhouse. Just like things DJ-related are her wheelhouse. Speaking of that, the bar is PACKED tonight. She texted me around 0915 to say there are about 60 people in there, and max capacity is 54 so let's just not report that to the fire marshall. Hehehehe. Glad the bar is juiced, but I'd be there now it if were a little less packed.

I'm actually on Groot-patrol, and she is toast now. I can't keep her awake any more. Our newest family member is just too tired to keep hanging out. Even Copper and Tiger Lily are all done at this point. Hopefully the dogs epic sleep tonight, but I have a feeling Groot will wake up a lot and we won't sleep too much. Hopefully she proves me wrong because I know I need a lot of sleep. A lot.

I have not worked on our new building too many hours so far this week, but with Travis and Sparkys a lot has gotten done. We now have six of the nine windows upstairs installed, and most of the demolition is done. A lot of the electrical is done, too. Here is what the front looked like as of mid-afternoon:

^Gods damned DEP not letting me strip off the front siding because it is asbestos. What a bunch of crap! The front upstairs winders will look nice once the siding is installed. I guess I won't do the siding until September and/or October. It is 24-square so it will take a while to do the entire building.

I really enjoy doing this kind of work. Does that make me defective? I don't want to be a house-flipper, F that, but every now and again a big projects seems to fuel me in some weird way. I love taking a piece of shit house and making it into a not-piece of shit. Turning lemons into lemonade? Something like that. I have all the same issues that the guys on those Flip This House show have on TV so I can see how that stuff does not even need to be scripted. Seriously. However, I don't want to be a "professional" flipper because I still tell people that I am not a real carpenter. Not to be cocky, but I do possess a lot of carpentry skills. How is that possible? How did I become a *mostly* carpenter/tax prepaper/blueberry raker? What a weird combo that is.

Here is the place from another angle:

^Travis put down the tarps yesterday when the DEP guy called to say that he got a second complaint about the place. OMG WTF, OVER? I have not removed any more asbestos siding, and thankfully the DEP guy knew that since he took another look. He did say we need to cover the debris so Travis helped with that. I need to replace all the downstairs windows, but most of the upstairs windows are nice and new now. Getting the upstairs done is the top priority.

I guess I should go engage the dogs again so they don't bivouac too much. I don't want revielle to be 0530 again tomorrow, F that, I'd like to sleep til 0800 or so. 6 hours would rock. Then I can go work on the building for a bit before I help my Sweet Pea with a later PM wedding that she has booked.

I am done. Fin. It is Jester's O' Clock. I am wearing a new Goonies tee shirt because Goonies never say die! The end.



Friday, 8-17-18: New canine family member!
Kat has wanted to get a third dog for quite some time, but I had been pushing back because I thought two was plenty. However, recently I warmed up to the idea of getting a third dog. I said our third dog should be a smaller dog, but then on Wednesday evening we took a drive out to the China/Windsor area to meet a Golden Retriever/Poodle mixed puppy and that all changed.

Our original plan was to drive to New Portland Wednesday afternoon to meet a litter of Australian Sheperds, but then we saw the listing for a Golden-Doodle and were able to connect with them. They had a litter of 10, but only one female puppy was available still from the litter. As an added bonus it was less of a drive for us and "only" $650 vs. the $750 for the Aussies. Price and distance were really a secondary concern since last week Kat was looking at puppies in Vermont, but it was a nice perk.

When we arrived on Wednesday evening we knew almost immediately that this last puppy was going to come home with us. She's a ball of adorable energy so we had a short visit, we met the poodle mom and the golden retriever father, and we were soon headed home less a wad of cash but with something much more valuable. On the 1.25-hour drive home we bandied about all kinds of names and came up with a bunch of names that would rock for a male dog (of course I said RAMBO, but also names like Falcor, Atreju, Drax, etc.) Finally we decided we liked the name GROOT so that is now her official name. In Guardians of the Galaxy it is heavily implied that Groot is male, but screw it Groot is a plant and a fun plant at that. I've been sorta calling her Baby Groot (GOTG2) because she is obviously still so young, but Groot is the official name.

^Baby Groot was born June 3 so she is just over 10 weeks old. So far after only 1.5 days at the house she is assimilating well. She HATES being in the dog crate in the bedroom, though. The first night we put her in there she cried and whined for about 10 minutes before flaming out and sleeping nearly 7 hours. Oh Jesus hell ya to that! A puppy sleeping 7 hours is a major win. Unfortunately, we didn't sleep so well because we bivouaced a tad later than normal (2230 good god that makes me feel old.) and a HUGE thunderstorm rolled through in the middle of the night with incredibly loud thunder. Even with three fans on high that woke us up. What a bunch of crap! Plus I kept waking up expecting Groot to be awake and needy on her first night home.

We took all three dogs to the park yesterday on a beautiful and less humid afternoon, and Kat took some fantastic photos including the one above. So far the three dogs all seem to be fine together. Right now at this relatively early hour (not quite 0700) they are awake but not too active. Last night was a rough one because Groot didn't want to sleep so much. She spent half the night crying and whining in her crate so finally at 0430 we just put her on the bed with us for the final hour that I kinda slept/dozed. We'll keep her in the crate with us in the bedroom at night until she is house-trained because if not she'd just piss and/or crap on the floor in the bedroom in the middle of the night. Other than that and some training she won't be crated much at all. Just like when Copper and Tiger Lily were puppies.

^So far not one accident in the house. We do let her out seemingly 30 times a day, though. She can do the porch steps with relative ease already, and I think she kinda knows that the lawn outside is the correct place to conduct her bodily transactions. No doubt she will have accidents in the house, but hopefully not today!

^All three dogs Copper, Tiger Lily, and Groot, after some good exercise at the park yesterday. Damn Kat knows how to take some great pictures.

I haven't worked too much on our new building the past couple days due to errands, supply runs, Groot, etc. Thankfully my Sparkys have done a lot of great electrical rough-in, and Travis has done all kinds of demolition. We have most of a 40-yard dumpster filled already. Wow! Plus we haven't put any of the old asbestos siding into the dumpster at all thanks in part to the fact that the DEP shut that part of our job down and the fact that the stuff is very heavy. Pine Tree Waste/Casella charges a dump fee by the ton so putting really heavy stuff into that dumpster = DO NOT WANT.

Yesterday the guy from the DEP called me to say that he got a second complaint about the asbestos siding on the place. What a bunch of crap! He said he drove by and no worries because he saw we were not removing any more of it so no fines for me. However, he did want us to tarp over some of the debris on the ground so Travis was a good man and took care of that while I was at Lowe's buying a few supplies. I went to both Home Depot and Lowe's yesterday, and bye bye $4912 on just one Home Depot bulk contractor-desk purchase. Ben at Home Depot takes good care of me on the big stuff. 52 sheets of 5/8" sheetrock, a bunch of wire, and 12 square of siding plus the corners, J-channel, starter, etc. Damn supplies add up fast. Good thing I am doing most of my own carpentry or else we'd go broke hiring it all out. Hopefully nex time, tonight or this weekend, I can post some updated photos of that job but for now I have to scoot off this bootleg turd of a site and go do things. Goonies never say die!

Oh, Katherine got me a sweet new Goonies tee shirt yesterday. How cool is that?!



Wednesday, 8-15-18: NO POWER AGAIN.
We lose power way too often considering our proximity to the center of town, to the hospital, and to Bangor. All I wanna know is why? Why did the power go out again? It went out about 15-20 minutes ago just as I was paying some bills online and getting ready to set up my TD Bank online account. We lost power for quite some time just last month, and it seems a few times a year we lose our juice. What a bunch of crap! Even worse is the fact that the weather is mundane. Cloudy, damp, and extremely humid. Emera needs to stay on top of this because it is epic fail.

^Basically not just Emera, but half the nation's infrastructure including its antiquated power grid that sucks serious ass. Why we have power lines on wooden poles in this day and age is really perplexing. Wind, ice, cars, squirrels, etc all cause havoc on the system way too often.

I'm not doing much for work today at the new property. We are still shut down on siding work since the DEP came Monday and regulated on me. I had a remediation contractor stop by yesterday to take some measurements for a quote, and he pretty much said it won't be cheap. What a bunch of crap! I'm guessing a few thousand dollars, give or take. I asked him for three quotes. First and most likely the one I would do will be the minimum required for DEP compliance. Second would be that plus removal of the front asbestos siding, and finally would be all that plus remediation of the garage asbestos siding. Gods damn government regulations. Gods damn asbestos. What a bunch of crap! When we get some prices then Kat and I can make a decision on what way we want to go.

I have "Sparkys" coming today to get going on the electrical rough-in. Ben and his son were there for a bit yesterday doing the layout and ordering supplies, the preliminary stuff. This morning I need to go pick all the supplies that they called in, and I was thinking I might also use my bootleg gym before we have a 1030 appointment. After that is lunch and a drive to New Portland to look at a puppy. Kat has wanted a third dog for quite some time, but I have not wanted one. I finally agreed to a third smaller dog so maybe today we will find a new family member. That will take all afternoon since New Portland is 77 miles away, 3 hours round-trip of driving. Walter is from New Portland and in a funny coincidence this chick who has the puppies knows his family since she lives on the same road. How cool is that?

I got two new windows installed at our new property yesterday, I met with Bruce, I bought more supplies, and I met again with the neighbors who want to buy an adjacent piece of property that came with the lot. Kat and I put a number on paper along with a nicely-written letter explaining out price, and they didn't seem too worked up over it so I don't know if that means they accept or not. The guy started asking who we use for an attorney and whether or not we even need one (we do!) to do the contract so I guess that means they are wanting to do it. Would be awesome to sell that piece for the price we want, but I'm not waiting with baited breath so-to-speak.



Monday, 8-13-18: SHUT DOWN BY THE DEP.
Gods damn it the DEP (Department of Environmental Protection) showed up today at our new property and shut my siding removal down. What a bunch of crap!

The day started off on a high note when the dumpster arrived right around 0800 when I rolled in after doing some exercises. I got started right away removing the old asbestos-laced siding, and then Kat arrived to do some debris removal from the upstairs so we were really making great progress. Kat had to leave later in the morning for an appointment, but then Travis showed up so once again there was some serious work getting done. Lots of junk going into the dumpster and lots of siding getting peeled off the place.

I set Travis to work and then I took my lunch. I got back early afternoon to show the place to Dillon and Debbie, and Travis was already there working so that was convenient. Travis is Debbie's cousin, and the three of them are kicking tires on the place right now. They seem to like it, but it is not certain yet whether or not they will take the place. When Debbie and Dillon were taking a look at the downstairs a pickup truck rolled in so I stepped out to say hello, and that is when I was greeted by a guy from the DEP. He said someone called it in so he had to drive up from Rockland to investigate. He said sorry but since it is a commercial/rental building I had to shut it down and hire professional asbestos people. OMG.

I knew someone was going to make at least one phone call about the place so I already have my permits from the city. I told them I was going to replace the siding, they said ok, and I got to it. I also had a feeling someone would bitch about the asbestos siding so I got a lot of it removed Saturday. Had I worked yesterday I would have gotten it all, but as-is I pretty much have three of the four sides stripped right down. Sadly the front and the entire garage are not yet stripped, and the debris all over the place has to be left alone until I can get professionals in there. A remediation contractor will not be cheap so this should be fun.


Thankfully I did not have to pay a fine. The guy said if it is our primary residence then we can remove it ourselves, but since it is not then too bad so sad. I was tempted to lie and say it was going to be our main residence, but then the guy was saying how they follow up and there are steep fines for noncompliance. I also don't want to lie so I'll take my shutdown like a man. At least the guy wasn't a total dick about it, and thankfully we can still work everywhere else on the place. We just can't mess with the asbestos siding anymore. If we do then I am pwned and will have to be on some shit-list and pay what he implied are pretty steep fines. I asked him how much the fines are because if it was a low number I would have gone right back to work and just paid. However, he said it is worse than just paying for a professional contractor to come finish it up. The contractor has to notify the DEP as well so I can't just hire some Craigslist droolbucket (or Jeremy!)



Sunday, 8-12-18: Loan #2 = FINALLY done. Progress on our new property so far.
I think my second bank loan, the refinance of the house across the street from my bootleg office, is finally all done. I hope! The closing was scheduled for 1400 Friday so I got there at 1350 ready to roll. The bank lady whom I had never even actually met was thankfully there and seemingly eager to get my loan closed, but the notary was not there. Hey, no prob patience is a virtue. Unfortunately, when 1415 came around and there was no notary that was all bad. Apparently the way they do business is a third party company called SERVICELINK does all their loan papers and sends a notary. Servicelink is in Pennsylvania so they have to sub it all out, and the bank chick told me how much she hates Servicelink because they suck. OMG epic fail!

Finally after 25 minutes of waiting and small-talk she told me to take off and go run errands while she switched to her plan B, have it all done right at the bank. In my mind I was thinking "All I wanna know is why? Why was this not the plan all along? Why does a third party have to do this at all?" When I did loan #1 at Bangor Savings Bank a couple weeks ago George made it so easy. A few signatures, some small-talk, and then I had my precious... precious money. I signed the loan papers at 0900 and had my bank check by 0930 for the purchase of our newest property. I highly recommend them.

So I left the bank and went over to Lowe's while I waited. That was actually a fruitful trip because I found 8 windows for the upstairs so bye bye $1074 there. I still need one more upstairs window and all the windows for the downstairs, but the upstairs is priority #1 right now so I think I can start installing the new windows up there this week. I got back to the bank an hour later, and the chick told me the notary was in a car accident but don't worry notary #2 would be there at 1700. She said the bank could not use their own in-house notary due to rules and shit so I had to leave and come back again. What a bunch of crap! Thankfully they waived some $425 fee for my burden, at least so they say. I don't even have my copies of the paperwork because when I got back to sign it all at 1650 I was in a hurry and rushed through it. Maybe my papers are online somewhere; I'll worry about that later.

A funny coincidence, the second notary they got is the same lady who was our wedding officiant. How cool is that?! We serously rushed through all the paperwork because Friday was Dillon's 23rd birthday and we had a 1700 family meal planned that was on hold thanks to my bootleg bank. I guess I'll get my paperwork tomorrow. Maybe? Hell I don't even know when the precious... precious money goes into my account. What a bunch of crap!

^To my useless bank that could barely even finish what should have been a pretty simple refinance loan. Epic fail indeed.

I spent roughly 5.5 hours yesterday removing the old, bootleg siding on our newest property. The siding peels off without too much difficulty, but there is a good chance that it is laced with asbestos so I had to work cautiously and with a mask. Thankfully the stuff is ceramic/slate-like so it doesn't turn to dust when disturbed. I'm sure a little dust goes airborne, though. Asbestos = what a bunch of crap! I stripped down the entire back side and a good amount of the south side. Here is the back side now:

Underneath the siding is tarpaper, but I will still use housewrap before we install vinyl siding. The siding won't get installed for a few more weeks, though, at least on that back side. First I'd like to get those trees removed because installing new siding and then having the trees cut is not smart. If a tree branch hits the building I'd rather have that happen before the siding is brand new.

Speaking of the trees, I met with Dave yesterday, the same fellow who removed a maple from our front yard a couple years ago. I thought maybe the guy retired because I called him a couple days ago and hadn't heard back, but he did call me yesterday and was able to stop in to see the place. He looked at the HUGE maple off to the right in the photo above (behind the building on what is the soouth side) and said F that he ain't touching that. What a bunch of crap! I thought he would pass on the job, but then he looked around some more and decided he could cut that large maple way back and totally remove those three big white pines in the back. I don't blame him for not wanting to do the maple because there are live power lines on that side. I expected total tree removal would be a few thousand so I roughly budgeted $5000 for tree removal. Dave's price for most of the trees to get hauled on: $2750. Works for me! Unfortunately, he is booked out a few weeks so he can't get it done until next month. Oh well, not a huge problem. I have plenty else to keep me busy there in the interim.

The old slate/ceramic/asbestos siding is heavy. I mean it is HEAVY. Each piece doesn't seem too bad, but a bunch of them together really adds up fast. My plan was to use contractor clean-up bags to bag it all up, but after three bags I scarapped that plan. You can only fill a bag about halfway before it becomes almost too heavy to lift and starts to rip apart. What a bunch of crap! So my new plan is to bring my utility trailer over there next Saturday and haul most of it over to the landfill. Hopefully they can take it at the landfill because I don't want to put it into the dumpster.

I wanted to get all the old siding removed before the code guys come Tuesday morning to do a walkthrough with me, but I don't see that happening. I don't want to work on the place today at all, and I think there is too much siding still left on the place to get it all removed tomorrow. Oh well no big problem. Tomorrow I should at least be able to peel the north and south sides completely down to the tarpaper, and then only the front will still have the old, bootleg asbestos-laced siding. The garage will also still have that siding, but I'm not too concerned about the garage right now.

On the inside I have been having Travis and Daniel doing some demolition. I did some demolition myself, mostly in the kitchen, and now the kitchen looks like this:

Cabinets = hauled on. Unfortunately I could not get a dumpster there for the weekend so we have had to stage all the debris in corners of all the rooms. No worries, though. Tomorrow when the dumpster comes we can start filling it up. I plan to have a 40-yard dumpster there for one week so I think in that time we can mostly fill it up and then get it the hell out of there. After a week the dumpster costs $10/day to keep there so F that!

The Red Sox have won three more consecutive games including a doubleheader sweep yesterday in Baltimore and are now an amazing 84-35 on the season. Oh Jesus hell ya! They are an incredible team this year, one of the best Red Sox teams of all-time. Hopefully they stay healthy and motivated right through the fall playoffs and can win another World Series. They are 9.5 games ahead of the Yankees in the standings. Awesome!

Alright turds, all two of youz, I am out of here to go do things now. Goonies never say die!


Friday, 8-10-18: It's still kinda Thursday night.
All I wanna know is why? Why is it 0136 on a Thursday night / early Friday morning and I am awake and on this bootleg site that no one will ever read? We bivouaced around 2130, I fell asleep for a bit, but then I woke up and tossed and turned and felt wide awake for quite a while. What a bunch of crap! Finally about a half-hour ago I just got up. I'll drink a coffee brandy and milk and go back to bed shortly, and hopefully I can sleep for a few more hours before I have to start my day today/tomorrow. I do not want to drink any alcohol, but in the right amount from time to time a little bit does help put me at ease and help me bivouac. Especially when I have a lot on my mind and/or when I am not feeling well. Tonight I feel good, but I have a lot on my mind.

I keep thinking about the property that we recently bought and that I started working on this week. We got a lot done yesterday thanks to help from Travis and Daniel, but I know not every day will go as well. Travis took down a bunch of the upstairs ceilings, Daniel worked on removing the downstairs ceiling and misc. junk, and I spent half my day on the exterior removing the old original siding. I'm pretty sure the siding is asbestos-laced cement board, and my suspicions were confirmed later that day by some online research. Then I found this from the city:

Oh Yeah baby, asbestos for sure! I definitely do NOT want to pay an exhorbitant amount of our precious... precious money for remediation so hopefully I can get all that siding mostly removed before any neighbors pitch a fit. From my reaearch it seems this type of asbestos siding is not really even hazardous because it is solid and comes off relatively easily, but someone will likely whine and cavetch about it. As long as I am not sanding or grinding it the fibers do not go airborne and I can get it the hell out of there. I hope! I was pretty smart and dropped off a letter to the neighbors introducing ourselves, and that paid dividends this morning in a major way.

Before I started working on the exterior I was in the kitchen removing the old, bootleg cabinets. I heard someone hollering and I thought "Oh great some stranger looking for work." I get that from time to time, some scumbag-looking passer-by seeing my ass at work and wanting to know if I will hire him. This property is VERY visible because it is right on North Main, a very busy road, so I know people will stop by and be nosy. Thankfully I went downstairs and was glad to meet one of the neighbors. He seemed very friendly and introduced me to the other neighbors, and we had a very nice talk. Even better, he wants to buy part of the property already. OMG!

The property that we bought is really an amazing place, and it can be viewed as two separate lots. Here is the city tax map that I just found:

For frame of reference, lot 409/32 to the right and bottom is Jimmy's Ice Cream. Yeah, we bought a bootleg building across the street from the local ice-cream parlor. How cool is that? Ice cream is great and if you disagree then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but ice-cream haters get even more hate than the usual. Especially if you have soft-serve. Soft-serve ice cream is the best of all time.

I digress. Lot 103 is the main "meat and potatos" of the property that contains both the building and a half-failing large garage. Lot 87 is just a grassy area that we thought we would use for parking because it is too small to develop into anything. Hell, I just wanted the property for that main building; I don't even care... whether or not I care about the garage or that bootleg little "bonus" piece of land located in number 87 above.

So the neighbor who lives nearby seems VERY interested in buying that #87 parcel. I had to think quickly on my feet, and both Kat and I had to discuss the possibility of selling that piece. 87 offers a huge parking potential with room for several vehicles so if we do sell it that means we need all our parking to fit onto our lot 103. The bootleg garage takes up all kinds of precious... precious space on the north side of lot 103 so if we do sell lot 87 then we would definitely need to demolish the garage. Thankfully the garage is bootleg, sagging, and probably structurally unsound so I think getting rid of the thing is a win. Unfortunately, demolition of that garage will be VERY costly since it is a huge garage.

^The garage has a furnace in it that looks like something from A Nightmare on Elm Street. Hehehehe. It seriously does look like a furnace that would eat your soul. I think everything about the garage is terrible so Kat and I have tentatively agreed that if we can sell lot 87 for the right price we can use that extra money to properly haul on the garage and turn all that space into parking. What is the right price? Well right now I don't know. I plan to ask the neighbor within the next few days to make us an offer. If the offer is lowball then they can F off and we will keep it, but if their offer is fair then we will likely accept and use that money to both remove and grade that garage space for a sweet parking area.

No wonder I can't friggin' sleep. I have numbers running through my half-chad brain, and I keep thinking about the fact that we bought a building that obviously has asbestos-laced siding. What a bunch of crap! I really hope I can get that siding off ASAP and then I won't have to do all that remediation shit. If I can get it all removed this weekend before someone can whine too much then awesome. It seems really stupid to even say, but I am not afraid of asbestos. Seems from my reading that a lot of what is out there regarding asbestos is a myth. Sorta like dry land in Waterworld. However, Kevin Kostner found his dry land so maybe it is not all myth. From what I have read dusty, airborne clouds of asbestos can cause major lung-cancer, but asbestos that is not airborne in tiny particularites is not that bad. Nevertheless you better gods damn well believe that I will NOT have Daniel, Travis, or any of my helpers working to remove that shit. I'll do it myself with extreme caution and leave the other work for the guys.

If I can get some occasional help from Daniel, Travis, and maybe others then we should be able to get that property done quickly. I realized some things this week already that are working to our advantage. Today we had a HUGE thunderstorm with a deluge of rain and the roof did not leak at all. Awesome! Also, I thought the walls would be plaster, but they appear to all be sheetrock so that is a huge win. Finally, the roof and walls all seems to be insulted so that is great. I budgeted $50k for the remodel of the place so if we can stay UNDER budget and get it all done then I will be very happy with that. Right now it is too early to know for sure what will happen [cough:asbestos:cough] but I see a few signals that indicate we *might* come in under budget. Hopefully!

Before I log off this turd-heap I just wanted to mention that if all goes as planned in about 12 hours I will be signing papers for my second refinance loan, and then I will have the funds needed to tackle all of the heavy-hitting things at that property including massive tree removal and the heating system upgrade. If things all fall into place in track then I will have that upstairs apartment ready for a tenant by the end if September. That is the goal right now anyway. I know there will be bumps along the way (gods damned asbestos!) so hopefully I can overcome any obstacles like a boss. For now I am out of here to try and sleep some more. Come on brain, shut down and stop thinking about everything. Big projects like this are a huge challenge that require a lot of my precious... precious research and time. I just want to go to bed now. The end. Fin.



Thursday, 8-09-18: A great day yesterday and progress on the new place.
I took yesterday off from working on any of the bootleg properties so Kat and I could spend the day together. Since I am mostly self-employed no reason why I can't take a Wednesday off and make up for it on the weekend, right? Or just take a Wed off AND take the weekend off! However, I won't take this weekend off because I want to get some work done Saturday. I guess technically I didn't take 100% of the day off yesterday since I had to field and make a couple quick phone calls and emails with the bank regarding my refinance loan, but that didn't take long and it didn't really mess up the day at all. Plus it was well worth doing that little bit of correspondence because I now have a closing date and time for the funds. Tomorrow, 1400, right at the bank, cleared to close! OH JESUS HELL YA! I really hope this actually happens so I can get some heavy-hitting work done at our new property.

Kat and I went down the ocean with the dogs yesterday; it was a nice 30-ish mile drive down to Searsport and the weather, although humid again, was overall good. Yesterday was the first time since earlier last summer that we have taken the dogs to the water, and just like last time Tiger Lily loved swimming whereas Copper would only wade out to about his chest. The dogs seemed to have a GREAT time, and it was nice being there. Sweet Pea made a nice lunch, and overall it was very relaxing and much-needed for us both. Especially after my being gone all those days for blueberry raking last week.

We had enough time later in the day to do some shopping, to have a nice supper, and even to walk down to Jimmy's for some ice cream. Overall defiitely a great day, and helped to relieve some stress for both of us.

^Even my Sweet Pea got into the relatively warm ocean water, at least up to her knees anyway.

Today I am heading over to our new property to do some more demolition and planning. All the ceilings in the upstairs need to come down, and I need to finish removing old cabinets in the kitchen. If weather permits (showers forecast for a good part of today) then we will also start removing old siding on the exterior. Daniel is planning to work with me for at least part of the day so his help will be very much appreciated. I was also going to have Jeremy help me, but he is out like a fat kid in dodge ball. Probably at some homeless camp drunk off his ass right now. What a bunch of crap! I need to get a large demolition dumpster over there so I'll call Pine Tree Waste for that shortly. Hopefully they can get me one by the end of the week or else I'll be staging a lot of debris and that would suck. A lot.

On Tuesday afternoon I climbed my ass up to the roof and had a look for the first time ever. Yeah, for the first time EVER. We bought the place without even looking at the roof. What a bunch of crap! However, I budgeted for a new roof when I made my offer so I figured if the roof was in good shape it's just a bonus for us.

From the ground level the roof looks flat, but that is a feature of the trim. The roof actually does have a slope down towards the back, and as expeced it is a rubber roof typical of flat-ish roofs. I don't think the roof leaks right now, but I can tell that rubber is older and near or at the end of its useful life. When I walked on it I felt some softer, almost spongy spots so that is a bit of a red flag. No cracks at all in the rubber right now, though.

2-3 huge trees there drop a tremendous amount of needles and leaves, and all those trees need to go ASAP. Not only are they too close to the property but they are also just too big. Hopefully the roof does not leak yet; there has not been enough rain lately for me to tell. I don't think it leaks because there are no wet spots on the ceilings below. When I saw that the first thing I thought was a metal roof would be perfect for the place. Funny Kat suggested that very same thing when I told her about the roof. Great minds think alike! She thinks I could do that myself, but I am not so sure. I have done plenty of shingle roofing, but never metal roofing. If I do it myself and screw it up then I get leaks in what will be a like-new interior space below. That would be a bunch of crap!

Alright losers, all two of youz, I gotta get going so I can make good headway on that place today. If all goes as planned then tomorrow afternoon my next bank loan will close and we will have the funds needed to really get that building remodel cranking. Bruce comes to see it today to make plans for plumbing, I already had Ben there for electric, and next will be scheduling tree removal and heating upgrades. It's been epic hot this week (and most of summer) but soon it will be cold and I will need a good heating system for that place.



Tuesday, 8-07-18: Feeling better about our new property...
I started working on our newest property for a bit yesterday. I didn't work more than 2-3 hours there because I had to do some mowing and because it was so frigging hot. Today actually feels hotter even though it has dropped to "only" 86 with thunderstorms nearby. Demolition in an upstairs apartment on a day like today = what a bunch of crap! I worked 2-3 hours over there today as well, and I met with Ben regarding the electrical. So far I have removed trim around most upstairs windows so I can get better rough opening measurements, and I opened up some of the ceilings a bit.

I got on my email early afternoon to see that the bank sent me this:

That "points" fee is a toilet, but oh well. The one fee I saw that I really hated was that $775 appraisal fee. OMG WTF? I already paid for the appraisal so do not double-bill me. What a bunch of crap! I asked them about it so either I am misunderstanding the breakdown or there is a mistake. I'd rather know for sure before I sign this bootleg thing. I really just want this loan to close ASAP, but more importantly I don't want to get screwed with bogus fees.

In other news, the Red Sox swept the Yankees in a 4-game series at Fenway. I watched about none of the games due to getting back into the world after blueberry raking, and that is a bunch of crap. The Sox are DOMINANT lately, and they are on pace for their most wins in a season, ever...

A 79-34 record with a 9-game lead over the rival Yankees = OH JESUS HELL YA!



Sunday, 8-05-18: Raking was great this season.
The end. Fin. Raking season 2018 has come to a close, and it was our 15th consecutive year raking for Cliff down in the Hope/Union area. I expected a trash season for the raking itself since Cliff is in the process of switching his fields to organic, but I was pleasantly surprised with his crop this time. Organic berries fetch a higher market rate, but it takes 3 years for the official conversion so for this season Cliff was stuck at the lower price per pound since his field is "only" 2 years removed from chemical treatments now. (Pesticides, fertilizers, etc) Since Cliff could not use chemicals on the field I though there would be a lot of weeds and shit to rake and with fewer berries. Thankfully I was wrong on my expectations, and the reward is a check for $1300, 400 boxes raked, avg hourly pay around $28. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Some parts of the field were a little rough, but other parts were fantastic.

Poor Gavin, I feel badly because he had a horrible season. He has been on-and-off dating one of Cliff's daughters for years, and recently that ended for him. Even worse was the fact that we had to rake Cliff's field right at his house so there were constant reminders for Gavin of that relationship. Then she would show up and not even say hello to Gavin at all. WTF, over? He was laying on the lawn in some shade, she walked right by, and she didn't even acknowledge him at all. He still pays for her phone and they didn't end things with a fight so that it totally not fair of her to do to him. What a bunch of crap!

^Bootleg fail trophy goes to Gavin's ex for treating him like a ghost, and not like the friendly Casper ghost. She is already with some other guy, and she had the gall to bring him over to the house one day. Gavin caught a glimpse of the guy as did I, and we were both disappointed. Then, to make matters worse, Gav had to go back to Brewer on Friday for a half-day to remove a failing smoke alarm at his rental property/house. The poor guy, epic fail for him. I hope he does not get back together with that chick again because she is a shit-show. He deserves much better.

It was a HOT, humid season. Friday morning was the hottest raking I have ever experienced. We started working around 0715, an d by 0720 sweat was dripping off us. The sun was unrelenting, the air was sticky, and there was no wind at all. That last thing was really the killer. On Thursday afternoon it was just as hot, but there was an awesome wind so it didn't feel so terrible. Friday morning with no wind I had to keep taking water breaks, and that definitely hurt production. Thankfully the raking was great so I still made over $200 that day. However, at lunch I was so drenched from sweat that I had to change into fresh clothes back at nearby camp. Gavin said his dad lost 4 chickens to heat exhaustion that day, and just a few days prior at UMaine a student athelete passed away from heat exhaustion so I kept those thoughts in mind as I worked.

I think this might end up being the hottest and most humid summer of all-time here. The extended forecast is 93 tomorrow, 92 Tuesday, and 80s the rest of the week with lows only in the mid to upper 60s. What a bunch of crap! Poor Kat can't sleep because the humidity affects her body in a very adverse way. We tried to buy an air-conditioner at both WalMart and Lowe's earlier, but they are sold out. Gods damn it! Thankfully Gavin loaned us a spare. Unfortunately, we can't run it in the bedroom and watch Netflix at the same time because the A/C is too loud. What a bunch of crap! Hopefully tonight it helps us sleep better.

Okay I did not finish my bootleg update so now it is Monday morning. The A/C worked great for half the night, but then I got up to go take a piss at 0300 and stepped into a puddle. Water was leaking out of the unit and all over the floor. FUCK! I had to clean that up and then try to go back to sleep, and my right arm was a little numb again so that kept me awake even more. I finally did fall back to sleep. Maybe I can adjust the A/C so it does not leak onto our precious... precious floor. I thought those things were supposed to drip water OUTSIDE gods damn it. Not that I am knowledgeable at all on the topic since I have never even owned one before.

I have to mow some lawns today and do a lot of other things. In conclusion it is too friggin hot. The end.

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