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

“Where's your driver's license?” –Kat
“Where's your license to judge me?” –Katherine
“It's called your birth certificate.” –Kat


Wednesday, 6-29-16: Puppy photos! Wish I felt better...
I feel like 10 pounds of crap stuffed into a 5 pound bag. What a bunch of crap! I've had this gods damned cough for the past 2.5 weeks that I was mostly able to power through, but on Monday my sinuses really got flared up and over the past couple days I have not felt good at all. I don't know if I caught a little cold or if my allergies finally did me in, but it totally sucks and needs to end ASAP. I usually don't get sick this time of year, but my allergies do tend to act up on occasion in May and June. Each year that passes it seems my allergies get worse, and that is a bunch of crap. I don't even know what I am allergic to, but it must be some type(s) of pollen.

I'm bummed out because the wether is not so good today. Plus I feel like shit. It's 0900 and I was supposed to go look at a roof to bid on with Jeremy, but it looks like rain showers are about to hit plus I don't feel good so I will call him and we can go look at the thing tomorrow. It's pretty low on my priority list anyway, and if I do take the job it's nothing I even want to touch until probably September. I still need to finish this house before I take on more work (besides blueberry raking) gods damn it.

We came home early from our camping trip at Peaks-Kenny State Park on Sebec Lake because our new puppy was ready to pick up. We originally planned to camp up there both Sunday and Monday nights and get our newest family member Tuesday morning, but on Monday afternoon we found out she was ready to go after her de-worming went well so we decided to go get her. Insted of getting home Tuesday around midday we got home Monday evening, and I took a bunch of pictures of our new puppy. Her first evening out back:

^Tiger-Lily was born May 9th so she was 7 weeks old when we picked her up, and she weighed 7 pounds according to the owners. She's more white than Copperpot, and so far she's great. She has pissed on the floor several times, but that's pretty much unavoidable when they're that young. This orning was all bad for me when she would pop a squat and leave little puddles all over the place. What a bunch of crap!

Sweet Pea gave her a bath in the kitchen sink Monday night:

^Copperpot was wondering what was going on. Wonder if he remembers having his own bath or two in that sink earlier this year? Copper has done ok with her so far, but we really have to watch him because he can play a little rough and we don't want her to get accidentally hurt. Often it seems he thinks she is a new toy; he doesn't realize it's his adopted sister of sorts and not a chew-toy that he can rough up without consequence.

We went to the park yesterday, and she did great for the first time ever going out and about. She even walked fairly well on a leash for the duration. She can run in short spurts, but she more-so hops than runs still because she's so little still.

^She needed a rest after playing for a bit. Kat takes great pictures!

Camping was nice for the 27 or so hours we spent up there. We got Copper to swim in the water for the first time in his life. At first he was hesitant, but then he built up some courage and seemed to be having fun.

We took him on a 2.5-mile little hike through the woods with us on Monday morning and he did great. Sometimes he runs ahead almost too much, but he always stops to make sure he can see us and he comes back when we call to him. Overall he's a great dog. Now we have two great dogs!



Saturday, 6-25-16: Camping, a new puppy, the IRS, the concert, ID2, and the addition.
Pure summer weather is here, and it has been here for the past week or so. This weekend is looking fantastic, too. Might actually get a little hot. Perfect for camping! We are leaving tomorrow to go to Peaks-Kenny State Park just beyond Dover to camp out both tomorrow and Monday nights. The campground is on Sebec Lake, and I hope the swimming area is excellent so we can see how Copperpot does in the water. He's never been swimming yet, ever. Hopefully he loves it.

After we break camp on Tuesday morning we're driving about an hour south and west to Moscow to pick up a new little bundle of joy, an 8-week old Golden Retriever whom we named Tiger Lily. Once we get her we'll drive 1.5 hours to get home and then hopefully we can spend the rest of the afternoon enjoying our newest family member. I bet Copperpot will also be very excited to have a new friend to play with. However, she will be so tiny that we will have to make sure Copper doesn't play too rough. She will be even smaller than the cats when we get her. Here is what she looked like when we went to pick her out three weeks ago:

^What's better than a photo of a cute puppy?

^A whole litter of puppies! I don't know which one is Tiger-Lily, but those are all her siblings. So cute how they all pile onto each other like that.

So come Tuesday we will have our hands full once again. It will be early mornings and broken-up nights until our new puppy can get acclimated to the house and to her surroundings. Thankfully I don't have tons of work to do so I can spend some quality time here at the house with her. I do have some lawns that will need mowing, but that won't take all day. In early July I will have a 4-bedroom apartment to turn around, but that place is in good enough shape where it shouldn't take up tons of my precious... precious time either. I actually have people approved for that apartment who say they want it and who already put a deposit in the mail. Oh Jesus, hell ya!

Here at the house I pretty much finished the downstairs. Finally! The trim work and touch-up painting took longer than I expected. The entry to the new addition looks like this now:

Ket can use some of those shelves for her DJ gear; we stowed the Jester's stuff out there last night and it was a piece of cake. No stairs to nagivate, no screen door to prop open. Eventually her studio will be in the room off to the left in tht photo. The studio has been done since February, but Dillon and Debbie are using it as their bedroom now.

^from the laundry room heading towards the stairs that lead both to the exit (left side) and to the main part of the house (right side.) I just painted those steps with a good floor paint and used some $7.99 Marden's mats. If it doesn't hold up then I will use another covering for the stairs, either carpet-runners or some kind of other flooring.

I still have to finish installing the 1/4-round up the stairs to the second floor:

I have a bit more insulation to install on the second floor, I might get that done today, and then we can remove the old entry door and finally make the house one big space. Right now having the door there makes it feel like two separate spaces attached together, but I needed the door there so the pets wouldn't go out there when I was doing the bulk of my work. The upstairs is far from done, but once the insulation is in place in the ceiling I don't think the cats will get into any serious trouble up there.

I also finally finished the siding and the gutter on the front:

^Just need to install the exterior light and outlet to the left of the door and one more tiny piece of downspout on the gutter then I can call that officially 100% done. Slowly I am checking things off the list, and if all goes well I should have all the important things on this addition done before blueberry raking (I hope!)

Last night I heard most of the Def Leppard concert from the back deck. It sounded like a great show! I thought for sure they would close with Pour Some Sugar on Me, but after they played that iconic song they played Rock of Ages and Photograph to end their set. They ended up playing 6 songs from the Hysteria album. Oh Jesus, hell ya!

Man, I don't feel too good. I almost feel hungover, but I didn't drink very much so I think it's more my body fighting off something. I've had a cough for over two fucking weeks now. What a bunch of crap! The cough hasn't stopped me from using the gym, playing racquetball, and jogging. However, my times for the 3-mile loop haven't been so great so that must have an effect. My last 3-mile jog took me over 26 minutes and I had to walk some of it. What a bunch of crap! Kat thinks it's from allergies and I agree, but now I'm not so sure because I feel shitty. Maybe it's more than just allergies because I've never had a cough last this long that I can remember. Hopefully this afternoon I feel better so we can go see INDEPENDENCE DAY PART 2 in the theater. Previews make the movie look awesome, but I'm sure it can't compare to how great the original was.

I suppose I should get my ass off this bootleg thing and pay the IRS the $1211 that I owe to them. The due date for the payment is the 27th, but we will be camping so if I don't pay today then it will be late. Last year I owed the IRS a lot more; I didn't even pay them off until December. What a bunch of crap! It will feel nice having that tax bill paid in full much earlier this year. Hopefully I do it right so next year I can actually pay what I owe by the filing deadline.



Friday, 6-24-16: BRING ON DEF LEPPARD!
Def Leppard is in town tonight. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Unfortunately, I won't be going to the show. What a bunch of crap! Fortunately, I have a solid plan B. We can hear the concerts fairly well from here at the house since the tunes blast at about 5000 decibals (slight exaggeration) and we're only a mile or so away from the venue. It's 2100 right now, and the opening acts are all done. Tesla opened the show two hours ago, and REO Speedwagon just finished what I presume was their closing song, Keep on Rolling. REO Speedwagon is ok, but I don't love their stuff. Odd band name, eh? Do they arrive in a wagon filled with speed? Do they have a wagon that has turbo-blasters? What does the REO mean? Nevermind because I don't even care... whether or not I care. Tesla is a great band; we heard some of their tunes while we were getting ready to head down to Jester's.

Kat said I could go to the concert without her, but no way. If she thought Def leppard sucked then different story (I would not have asked her to marry me! Hehehehe.), but Def Leppard is also her favorite band so it's not fair if she misses out due to work and I get to go. I actually did go to the last Def Leppard conert a few years ago when they came with Lita Ford and Poison, but I got too drunk and missed out on most of the fun. What a bunch of crap! Even better, I totally ditched my chick so she had to walk back to get her car. Then she went home disgusted with me and I passed out in my office. I remember I had a pretty bad hangover then, too. I wonder when that was? Might only have been 3 years ago.

It's all quiet outside right now as Def Leppard is probably setting up on stage. I'm gonna go up to the new deck in Katherine's room and listen to some of the show before I have to leave to go pick her up. She's babysitting right now only 1/3 of a mile from here at my rental house across from my office and I am her usual transporter. No way would we have her walk home in the dark no matter how beautiful the weather (currently about a perfect 10 of a night. Great summer weather!)

Even though I won't be at the concert I am wearing my DEF LEPPARD PYROMANIA tee shirt in their honor. Def Leppard is fucking awesome. Some of their post-2000 songs totally blow, but there are good nuggets mixed in including two songs from their latest album called Let's Go and Dangerous. Both of those songs get decent airtime on 100.3WKIT. I'm guessing they play both of those songs tonight.

^They got lazy in their old age and simply name their latest album DEF LEPPARD. Hysteria (from 1987) is their best album and my favorite album of all-time.

Katherine is supposed to get out around 2200 so I will miss some of the concert, but that's ok. Maybe she will work late and I can hear the whole thing! The show will probably end around 2230-2300 and then I will head down to Jester's for a final beer before the night ends. I don't drink as much as I used to drink, and that was a point of contention in our relationship recently. Kat wanted me to drink less, I wanted to drink more, and I agreed to a 2-drink cutoff. However, two drinks mean a lot of different things depending on what I am drinking and how tired I am, etc. She actually did tell me just this week I can drink as much as I want, but drinking too much is just stupid and unnecessary. 2-4 drinks depending on the night, content, and duration are a perfect amount for me. Getting wasted is not really even fun, and it would cost me my friendship with my wife so no way is that a price I ever want to pay.

I should get off this bootleg thing as I wait for DEF LEPPARD to start. The crickets in Shrek's Swamp out back are making a racket so they all need to STFU. They actually are probably frogs, not crickets. I should know that without hesitation because this boy grew up near a pond in a very rural area. It was paradise actually. However, I would never go back to it because I'm all grown up now and the world always moves on. It's nice my parents still live in the same house where I grew up, but it's not the same as it was when I was a kid. I remember hanging out in my bedroom with my DEF LEPPARD HYSTRIA cassette tape and listening to it over and over again. We went down to the Portland Mall, a big trip for us at the time, and I got it there for probably around 10 bucks. Ah, part of me will always miss the 80s. It's amazing to me that a lot of these bands who had their heydays in the 80s are still touring and ripping out tunes to this day.




Thursday, 6-23-16: More gun control?
Fucking democrats. Fucking terrorists. Fucking lunatics going around shooting a bunch of people and ruining our precious... precious society. Last week some worthless pile of civilian communist shit-twinkle-toed shit went into a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida and shot dozens of people. 49 people died including the shooter when cops had to send in the SWAT team to take his ass out. The shooter pledged himself to ISIS on the phone with police negotiators, and thata is horrible. The entire thing should never have happened, but how could we have prevented it?

Recent mass-shootings like the elementary school in Sandy Hook a few years ago, the theather shooting in Colorado a couple years ago, this recent Orlando massacre, and countless others in the recent past have refueled the gun-control debate in a major way. A gun-control bill in the senate was narrowly defeated recently so last night the sore-loser democrats did a lame "sit-in" where they ordered pizza and sang songs and shit. OMG SORE LOSERS GO HOME. DISAPPEAR, SCUMBAGS.

From USA Today:
"Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, attempted to gavel the House into order at noon, but when the Democrats refused to quiet, he gaveled the House into recess instead. When Ryan took to the podium later, he brought the House back into session and proceeded to votes. Republicans remained mostly stone-faced throughout the rowdy Democratic spectacle.
After the votes, the House recessed again, and Democrats returned to their protest speeches on the floor. Ryan said earlier on CNN that he would not schedule a vote on gun bills that have already been defeated in the Senate. "This is a publicity stunt," Ryan said. "This isn't trying to come up with a solution to a problem. This is trying to get attention."


All I wanna know is why? Why does there need to be more bans on guns? People who are so demented they plan to massacre a lot of citizens will not be deterred by bans on assault weapons. There will always be a black market for the things. I personally do not own an assault rifle, but I would if the right opportunity ever came along. I'd never go deer hunting with an AR-15, but if the aliens (INDEPENDENCE DAY PART 2 IN THEATERS TOMORROW) ever do come to attack it would be nice to know I could unload several dozen rounds into their grubby asses before they were able to take us out. Plus it would be nice to defend the home with a machine gun in case we are ever attacked by Canada. Hey, they are only 2 hours away! Hehehehe.

^Taken 10 years ago after we had a nice Easter meal with Grammy and Papa (RIP to them both; I miss them a lot.) I believe we were driving back from their retirement home in Boothbay Harbor when we stopped off at the range for some target practice. Even Mom did some shooting on that day, and she normally couldn't care less about guns!


In conclusion, gun control = DO NOT WANT. Everyone should be able to buy a gun, and machine guns are cool. Yes, they are deadly and should be treated with utmost respect. However, everything is deadly in the wrong hands. Sometimes people will die of unnatural causes and it's just not going to be right or fair. There are over 300 million people in this country alone plus billions more around the world, and a great many of those people are filled with hate and discontent. More gun ban-laws will only create more problems in place of potential solutions.

Oh look, the Red Sox lost again last night; they are not doing so great this month. Britan is considering leaving the EU, and a close vote over there is expected soon that could have huge impacts on the global economy. Copperpot is outsite on the deck chewing on a stick, and I showed that 4-bedroom apartment twice yesterday before losing to Deno at racquetball. Both people who saw the apartment want to apply for the place. I need to get going so I can work on the house. The downstairs is almost done and I should have some photos of that next time. Goonies never say die!



Monday, 6-20-16: The longest day of the year.
The official beginning of summer comes today at 1834 so that's only about 20 minutes from now. Cool beans. Google told me that fact so I dunno how accutare it really is, though. However, I do know that today is the longest day of the year featuring a very early 0449 sunrise and a nice, late 2025 sunset. Cool beans again. I wish the sun always set after 8PM. I don't need daylight as early as 0415, but I won't complain about that either. Long days rule! Warmer weather rules, too. The weather has been great so we can take Copperpot for evening walks and stop off at the park with him as well.

Normally I would never update this turd-heap at this hour because my Sweet Pea and I would be finishing up our supper. However, she's on a SYKPE chat with a client from Georgia (Skype? Hell if I know because I've never used that bootleg Interweb chat-thing and neither has Kat.) She got hired to do a wedding from someone who lives 1500 miles away. How cool is that?! Kat is an awesome DJ. She doesn't have too many gigs lined up for this summer, but she will be a lot busier this fall. Having more free time this sumer = cool beans.

^Kat and Copperpot in her "studio." That is a tiny 9x10 room with no closet, but it's all she has for the time being since she is letting Dillon and Debbie use her new studio as their bedroom. The new studio is actually our old garage!

I finished installing a suspended ceiling in the entry-hall area of the new removation yesterday, and Kat and I went out back to seed some of the lawn and to straighten up the yard a bit. You can see in this photo where the lawn needs some serious love:

^Kat had just thrown the tennis ball for Copperpot. He loves chasing that ball! When he's not chasing the tennis ball he also enjoys chewing on that piece of firewood and dragging it around the yard. You can see some of the yard area where there is no grass. No lawn = what a bunch of crap! Why is there no lawn there? I murdered it last summer/fall when I did this to it:

^I left all that dirt there from late August through the end of the fall, and it killed off a lot of our precious... precious lawn. What a bunch of crap! I got a lot of exercise digging all that out by hand last year.

I showed that 4BR apartment today that I will have available early next month. I called the tenants last Thursday to let them know I planned to do Monday and Tuesday showings, but they didn't answer so I left a message. They never called me back like I asked them to do so on Friday before racquetball I stopped by and talked to the guy there in person. He said Monday-Tuesday = no prob. However, I called the Giblet-Heads this morning to tell them I had one showing today at 1600, and the chick was all worried and wanted me to postpone the showing because the place was still messy. What a bunch of crap! I had given them plenty of notice so I said too bad so sad showing goes on as planned. When I got there with the prospective tenants I thought the place would be a mess since these current tenants tend to live like slobs. However, I was amazed to see the place looked great. They did a nice job of cleaning. Oh Jesus, hell ya!

I didn't get a great vibe from the person who did the showing, but maybe she will apply? I hope she doesn't apply because I think she might be a Giblet-Head. I don't have any showings scheduled for today, but I do have two tomorrow afternoon. I haven't gotten too many responses for the place, and that is surprising to me considering 4BR apts are more rare. I did price the place at $1120, my most expensive apartment listing ever. Last year I priced the place at $1090, and a couple years ago I rented it for $990. If my showings tomorrow don't lead to good applicants I will repost the ad and I might drop the price back to $1090.

^A large 4BR, my biggest apartment unit. That photo was taken in 2008 just after I did a pretty big remodel. Wow, I did that 7.5 years ago! The place still looks pretty good these days, but the carpet has worn in the bedrooms and I had to replace the living room carpet last May. I would have just used a laminate floor since carpets hold dirt and wear out faster, but it's an upstairs apartment so the carpet is great for deadening footfalls and helping as a noise barrier.

My price point of $1120 is actually not bad considering what else in this area is being offered. Even though I've only lined up 3 total showings so far I still think I'll get the apartment rented fairly soon. At least I hope I do!



Sunday, 6-19-16: Father's Day and nice weather.
The weather has been fantastic over the past few days, and this coming weeks looks mostly decent also:


It will be a bit more humid today and tomorrow, but nothing unbearable. The last few nights have dropped down to the upper 40s, perfect for getting a good night's sleep when you don't own an air conditioner. I have Mesa, AZ (near Phoenix) in my weather.com favorites because Kat and I are going out there for a vacation/scouting mission this coming November. At 0645 our time so 0445 out there it's 80 degrees in Mesa. OMG it's still nighttime there! They are under an excessive heat warning with high temps expected to be near an all-time record of 120. What a bunch of crap! Maine > central and southern AZ this time of year. I can't even imagine trying to function in this world when the temperature is 120 degrees. When we go out there this fall I think their average high temperature will be close to 80.

Today is Father's Day, and I didn't get jack shit for my Dad. Pop's birthday was 12 days ago and I didn't get him anything for that either. What a bunch of crap! Dad is awesome and someone whom I respect a great deal, but he's 66 and he doesn't really need anything. House paid off, has toys, and most of all he is sorta like me and doesn't ever feel compelled to need gifts. He's fine with just a phone call, which I will do later today.

Even though I don't have any kids of my own, both Dillon and Katherine got me gifts and that means a lot to me. Katherine gave me a really nice card, and Dillon gave me a cool Star Wars tee shirt. Plus Dillon sat with me on the new deck out back Friday night and we had some Redd's Apple beer. It was a nice night and a perfect way to christen the new deck out there. We set up the camp chairs and enjoyed a nice view and some stars overhead before I went down to Jester's for the last part of Kat's karaoke gig. The deck is actually only accessable through katherine's bedroom, but Katherine isn't home this weekend so we didn't have to worry about being in her way as we came and went.

I actually haven't finished the new deck yet, but it's functional as long as you don't get too close to the edge. I need to spend about 3 more hours finishing the thing up. A few more carriage bolts are needed just to reinforce the railing posts, and there is no railing or railing balusters at all yet. However, I did finish the decking before I played racquetball Friday so the thing is 100% solid. I worked on the deck a couple hours each day Thursday and Friday, and here is what it looks like right now:

^I need to get the lawn seeded so it can grow back properly in that area between the new addition and the fire pit. All the dirt piled there from the foundation and frost wall last year killed our precious... precious lawn. if all goes as planned I will have the deck 100% done no later than tomorrow. Maybe even today!

I'm gonna go get my swell on in the gym and then do some work here at the house. It feels nice not having any big plans at all this weekend. So often we're on the go doing something; this has been a great and relaxing weekend so far. I did have to spend a couple hours yesterday morning mowing apartment lawns and shutting down furnaces for the summer, but I was free for all of the afternoon to hang out here at the house. Hopefully I don't have too much apartment work to do this coming week so I can get a lot more done here at our house and enjoy some of the beautiful summer weather. Goonies never say die!



Thursday, 6-16-16: BONUS FREE MONEY OMG I WON BIG.
I haven't worked as a manager for FedEx since July of 2010, but I still get crap from them in the mail every once in a while. Pension this, 401k that, etc. I used to have a FedEx 401k, but I hauled on that last year because I wanted money for our wedding and honeymoon. Appropriate use of $5800 in retirement funds? Oh jesus, hell ya! I had to pay a 10% early withdrawal tax to the IRS for cashing it in plus it counted as regular income, but I don't even care because it was well worth it.

Since I sold off my retirement last year I didn't think I'd be getting anything else in the mail from FedEx, but I got some packet from the FedEx retirement service center last week that I let sit on my office desk for a couple days before I even bothered to open it. I almost threw it away, but I'm glad I took a look because inside that envelope was this golden nugget of life-win:


$11780?! OMG

I worked at FedEx as a part-time outbound supervisor for just over 7 years, and I guess that was enough time to score me some bonus retirement money. I thought my 401k that I never even signed up for was my only FedEx retirement, but I guess there's even more money for me somewhere on this planet, and that is outstanding. FEDEX > UPS. I remember when I accidentally got signed up for a 401k at FedEx. I threw away all the enrollment paperwork for their 401k, but I never opted out on their website or through their HR call center so one day I just had a 401k. However, I didn't even care... whether or not I cared so I just threw away all that stuff for a few years. Then one year I opened up one of the statements and realized I had a few grand in that 401k account. Score!

This other retirement money, this $11780, comes as a total and welcome shock. At first I thought it was a mistake and I really don't have any bonus retirement money in some magic account, but I called them and it is confirmed. Since I'm not retirement age yet if I cash it in or if I start collecting a monthly amount it's fully taxable plus the early withdraway 10% penalty, but I don't care because it's FREE MONEY. I could let that $11780 sit there for a couple more decades and then cash it in when it's worth more (or get a higher monthly amount), but F that what if I die, what if FedEx goes under, or what if America collapses? I want that cash now and my bootleg apartment business can be my retirement for later in life!

I did that math on the benefit of taking a lump-sum now vs. taking a monthly amount of $48.41 for the rest of my life. After taxs that $11780 really becomes about $7500 now. Still a fantastic amount of money! The montly amount equals $580 a year, and about $400 a year for us after taxes. Not bad at all for free money, but it would take almost 19 years of monthly payments to add up to the lump-sum payout. When the time value of money is considered taking the monthly amount = what a bunch of crap! The $48 a month is enough now to cover my cellphone bill with enough left over for some beers, but in 19 years $48 a month will be chump change.

That $7500 will be a huge help to us for paying off some of the Lowe's and Home Depot card balances. Doing the house addition was not cheap, and a lot of that renovation was funded with no-interest store financing. We can also use some of the money for other things, and I might put some of it back into my traditional IRA. I have to sign a form and send it back to FedEx by July (I'll do it today!) so I can get paid in early August. I already have it set up for direct deposit so it looks like the money will come in when Gavin and I are blueberry raking for Cliff in about 1.5 months.

$11,780 of free money. It's like I won the lottery even though I never play. Oh jesus, hell ya!


Wednesday, 6-15-16: Apartment done, another one coming up.
I put a few final finishing touches on my old apartment yesterday, and I spent some time cleaning in the basement over there before the new tenants arrived later that afternoon to start officially moving in. Monday was my big work day; I spent over 8 hours total working on that apartment including installing the new floor and baseboard in Walter's old bedroom:

I'm pleased with how it looks. The floor only took a couple hours to install, too. Bonus! However, prepping the subfloor took some time and the baseboards took about another hour to cut and install. The previous floor in that room was carpet squares that I installed many years back. In fact, I might have done that installation when Walter moved out. I remember when Doug, Jon, and I moved in way back on September 1, 1998 that room was a bunch of crap. There was a gross-looking pink carpet that totally stank of cat piss. Ron, our landlord then, offered us $75 off first-month's rent plus he gave us another rent discount for the cost of renting a steam cleaner and for buying other cleaning/paint supplies.

Interesting story about that whole situation. We were all new to Brewer so we didn't know where the nearest hardware store was. We found our way to the Wilson Street strip, and we spotted an Ace Hardware store in the Hannaford shopping plaza. However, we were in the wrong lane to turn into the place so we went a little further up the road and spotted Aubuchon Hardware. I noticed a HELP WANTED sign, I grabbed an application, and that led to my first job post-Navy. I worked at Aubuchon for Roger part-time for just over a year before a manager for Circuit City came in to buy paint. I helped him with his paint, he thought I was a good worker, and he started a conversation with me about a job opportunity for the new Circuit City store that was going to be opening. At that time I had already planned to leave Aubuchon because $6.25 an hour was no great pay. However it was a college job and I did have money saved up from when I was in the Navy so I didn't care that much. However, Circuit City seemed interesting so I went to that job interview at some hotel conference room in shorts and a tee shirt. I didn't care if I got a job at Circuit City or not because Aubuchon wasn't terrible, but I got hired so bye bye Aubuchon and hello Circuit City from Oct 1999-Feb 2003.

So if we had gone to Ace instead of Aubuchon my entire career and life path would have been much different. Funny how things like that in life can happen. Anyway, we steam cleaned the hell out of that rug, but we could never get that disgusting cat-pee smell out. What a bunch of crap! So we ended up buying a black area rug about 8x10 that covered most of the nasty pink rug and that trapped the smell out of sight, out of mind. Doug took that room and lived in it for many years before he eventually moved to AZ for the first time and then Walter moved into that room.

We had many different roommates over the years, and this other room was a revolving door of sorts:

^Another new floor. I actually had to install a 1/2" plywood subfloor in that room, too.

Phil lived in that room with Walter and I for about 3 years, Doug lived in it for a few years when he came back from AZ, and others like Gavin, Carl, Jon, Sam, and Tim also lived there for varying amounts of time in years past. I put a new rug in tht room in 2006; I just found some old Crap photos of that effort. Here's the thing 10 years ago:

I would have loved to get more than a decade out of that carpet, but the going rate in rental properties seems to be 8-10 years before carpets wear out and get stained to the point of no return. Now there are no more carpets at all in that apartment. Oh Jesus, hell ya! In fact, the apartment has never looked better, possibly ever. When we first moved in back in 1998 the entire apartment was a shit-show. Over the years I have made many improvements so now the place is awesome.

^The bar is still in good shape; I believe I installed that in 2007 when Gavin was living with Walter and I. The new tenants picked out the paint and paid for it. Kat helped me for a few hours Monday morning doing touch-up edge/trim painting so that saved me from having to work a ton. She's the best!

The new tenants for my old apartment are a 56-year old retired Navy veteran and his 53-year old chick. They seem like nice people, and I hope they plan to stay for a few years. They just moved up from Stockton Springs where they were in a larger and more costly condo-style unit in a 55+ year-old community. They didn't like living in that place so they seem thrilled with the apartment. They want to stay for a few years and save up for a house so I hope that's what they actually do.

So in the past 1.5 months I've done renovation work in both first-floor apartments at that building. My old apartment was the lesser of the two jobs, but it still pulled me away from working on our own house for another 1.5 weeks. Today I should finally have a bit of time to work on our house, and we're in for a beautiful stretch of weather so I can do some work inside and some work outside. Unfortunately, the tenants who live in my 4BR apt just officially gave their notice yesterday so they're out July 1st. What a bunch of crap! It will be the third consecutive month I've had tenants move out with less than a full 30-day notice and the third consecutive month I have to advertise, do showings, etc. Thankfully I don't expect that apartment to need as much work as my old apartment and the one before that needed. Hopefully I can get it rented fast and it won't pull me away from working on our own house for too long.



Friday, 6-10-16: News headlines from the past week.
Cassuas Clay Muhammad Ali died this week. On the NBC morning news they're talking about his big funeral where lots of celebrities will attend. He was famous for beating people up and for saying he's the greatest, but what else did he do? He changed his name and his religion so he could dodge the draft and avoid the Vietman War. What a bunch of crap! I suppose when he did that he was still just a kid, barely an adult, but seriously not cool. What a pussy! Hopefully since that boneheaded decision he got his shit together and did great things for society, but I don't know for sure. A lot of people loved him so he must have been A-ok in his later years. Right? Or is that just public perception, the sheeple not knowing any better?

Some turd kid fell into the gorilla exhibit at the Cincinnati Zoo last week, and the Giblet-Heads in charge of the rescue operation shot a gorilla in order to "save" the kid. What a bunch of crap! The life of one gorilla > the life of one stupid kid who has even dumber parents. Public outcry over the shooting of the gorilla was huge, and rightfully so. Many wanted to see the parents charged in some kind of criminal way, but really what would be the charge? Stupidity is still not punishable by law in itself. I wish the kid died during the 12-foot fall into the gorilla enclosure and then it all would have been moot.

What's really sad about the story is the fact that the gorilla who grabbed the kid was not trying to hurt the kid at all. There is some video, and in the clips you can see the gorilla appearing to shelter the poor kid. All I wanna know is why? Why didn't they tranqualize the gorilla? Why did they have to murder him? The fuckin' DINKS. Reason #967,302 why our society fucking sucks. I used to root for a giant asteroid to come wipe 99% of humanity off the face of the Earth, myself included if necesary, but now that I am married with a family I don't really root for that anymore. However, if it does happen then oh well at least it's been a good ride for the first 40 years of my life.

^Gorilla was just hanging out and did NOT deserve to die. Dumbass parents raising a dumbass kid.

Some assface student at Stamford University raped a chick and only got a 6-month jail sentence despite the fact that it should have been a few years at least. The judge is a loser-ass for hanging down that weak sentence, and there is a petition somewhere to get the judge fired. The rapist was a good swimmer whose parents have money so the judge probably got bribed or something.

EDIT: I don't have time to finish this update cause I have shit to do. What a bunch of crap!



Thursday, 6-09-16: Lots of news from the past week.
Kat doesn't have to go to The Roost tonight to host karaoke. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Orono is not a very happening town these days because most of the college students have disbursed to other places for the summer. Therefore, doing regular karaoke shows doesn't really make sense when business is slow. The owner may decide to have karaoke again up there next week, but at least for this week we get a break. Awesome! The money that gig brings in is nice to have, but I value the free time much more, especially for this time of year.

It's 0700 so I'm doing my bootleg update that two people will ever read early today. Already ate breakfast, watched the weather, and had Copperpot jump all over me. Cleveland crushed Golden State in the NBA finals last night; I was sound asleep before the 3rd quarter began in that game. I don't really care that much about who wins, but LeBron James seems like a dink so I'll pull for Golden State. Despite the loss Golden State still does have a 2 games to 1 lead in the best of 7 series. In other news they talked about Trump vs. Clinton. Both candidates suck. What a bunch of crap!

^Both Clinton and Trump deserve this trophy, but of the two I do think Trump sucks less than Clinton. Stallone should enter the race as an independent candidate.

Last week we had a lot going on as usual. On Friday we went and looked at a litter of Golden Retriever puppies right in Bangor. The lady wanted a steep $1000 per puppy, her house was a dump, and she seemed a little bit like a Giblet-Head. The father of the puppies was not there because I guess she hired a whore to knock up her golden goose, but the mom was there and that was not good. The lady had to put a muzzle on the mom, and the poor dog was very skittish and uncomfortable around us the whole time. We decided thanks but no thanks so we continued our search.

Saturday was a very busy day for us because we found a puppy and we had a cookout that night. First, we drove 3 hours round-trip to see a litter of Golden Retriever puppies in the small town of Moscow. We arrived with doubt because the house looked kinda dumpy, but inside were all kinds of beautiful puppies so we decided to get one. $400, too. A much better price than the ones we saw the day prior! Cost was not the primary consideration in our decision, but a lower price certainly helps. Now I have extra money to give to the IRS for my income taxes still due ($1200 owed.) so that's a nice plus. The IRS doesn't charge that much in interest and last year at this time I owed them $3000 or so. Owing the IRS = what a bunch of crap! Next year I should do it right so I don't owe them come the filing deadline.

I don't have a photo of the adorable little puppy that Kat chose, but Kat has one in her phone so I should find a way to get it. Our new puppy was born May 9th, and her shots are scheduled for the end of this month so if all goes as planned we will be able to drive back to Moscow and get her on the 28th. Kat, Katherine, and I discussed many name possibilities on the drive back to home from Moscow. Near the top of the list was Athena, but in the end Tiger-Lily won out. I think it's a great choice! It's obviously not as awesome as RAMBO or COMMANDO, but for a female Golden Retriever it's A-ok.

We got home Saturday afternoon with barely enough time for me to go out back and assemble Kat's birthday present. I bought her a swing that looks like this:

At first I was thinking a puppy would be a great birthday gift for my Sweet Pea, but then the more I thought about it the more it sucked. We were planning to get another puppy anyway, and it wouldn't be fair to Kat if I just went and got one without her input. I needed her to be a part of the decision process including meeting the owner, the parent(s), seeing the house and conditions where the puppies are being raised, etc. I needed her to hold the different puppies and to decide which one tugged at her heart the most. That can be hard when there are multiple puppies because they're all so cute. It was very tempting to get more than one, but last year that ended in epic fail with Crowley and Castiel so we didn't want to repeat that mistake.

We had a cookout here Saturday night to celebrate Kat's birthday, and that was fun. We had a quick rain shower, but the weather was otherwise very summer-like and nice. My Sweet Pea didn't actually turn 41 (I mean 29!) until Sunday the 5th, but celebrating the birthday made more sense for us Saturday the 4th because Sunday was a big day in its own way. Katherine graduated high school on Sunday! The graduation ceremony itself was up at the Alfond Arena at UMaine, and I believe it was the first graduation ceremony I ever went to. It was very nice seeing Katherine graduate; we are all very proud of her. Now she's working on her FASFA so she can start college later this year or more likely in early 2017. She still has her learner's permit, but soon she will be ready to take her road test to try and obtain her actual driver's license. We just need to practice a bit more including parallel parking.

I've been working in my old apartment this week, getting it ready for new tenants. It's a little weird working in that apartment because I have so many memories there, especially in my old bedroom. When I lived there my old room had 1970s-looking panel walls and an old blue rug, but now the walls are painted a deep blue/gray, and I just installed a new floor and baseboards. Look at the difference:

^Taken Dec 2011 wen I still lived there. (Just before I moved out for good.)

^Much less ghetto!

I need to do the same thing in the other two bedrooms. I cancelled the carpets in the entire apartment. Years ago I got rid of the old, bootleg carpet in the living room and now all three of the bedrooms no longer have carpet. One of the bedrooms has a terrible subfloor so I have to plywood that today. Check it out:

^What a bunch of crap! Stupid 100-year old building with all kinds of different additions and weird floors.

Gavin came to the cookout last Saturday, and we had a laugh at his Christmas tree story. He and his chick got some tiny little Christmas tree planted in a pot, and it had glitter all over it. They recently broke up, he threw it into my dumpster, and then she said she wanted it back so he had to get inside the dumpster and fish around for the tree. He was literally in the dumpster with all the trash, and I remember seeing some nasty stuff in there because I threw some gross trash in there myself right on the tree. Hey, I didn't know he wanted it back! He said he had to take a shower after because it was so gross. HAHAHAHAHA!

For some odd reason that I cannot explain she wanted to "celebrate" their breakup (she hauled on him) so I was playing at the park with Copper last week when they drove up with that tree. They wanted to plant it somewhere so I suggested they plant it in the woods or on an edge somewhere so it didn't get removed and/or mowed over by the city. After that suggestion I hit the road for the night to let them do their thing, and the next day when I took Copper to the park I saw the tree right near the center of the field area on a little knoll. AAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA! The tree had glitter on it so it sparkled from the road. Seriously. Every time I walked/drove by last weekend I laughed out loud when I looked across the field and saw that little tree. Unfortunately, when the city mowed on Monday the tree disappeared. I noticed last night they dug it up. I looked in the woods nearby in case they tossed it aside, but it was nowhere to be found. What a bunch of crap!

In conclusion, when you break up with someone don't throw away your sentimental tree, dumpster-dive after it, and then plant it in a place where it will last 3 days before being uprooted and removed forever. Poor Gavin, I don't even have it in me to tell him his precious... precious tree is gone. On Saturday night he was texting her and told her how nice the tree looked and that got her to come all the way up from the midcoast to see him. She came here to give him a ride back to his place even though he lives only 1/3 of a mile away. AAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA!



Thursday, 6-02-16: I started the deck.
I"ve finally been able to work on our house this week. Nice! I've only put in about 12 total hours on the place in the past three days, but I'm happy with what I've gotten done in that time. I went on two large supply runs, the downstairs is 100% sanded and ready for paint in the hall that connects to the laundry room, and the deck out back is framed.

I got the materials for the deck yesterday morning at Lowe's; I took full advantage of both Lowe's and Home Depot special financing Memorial Day sales over the past weekend. $1385 added onto the Home Depot card and $475 added to the Lowe's card. The Home Depot is 18-month 0%, and the Lowe's is 12-months 0%. Oh Jesus hell ya! Unfortunately, the way I structured my special financing deals over the past 13 months leaves me with something like $6000 coming due all in May next year. What a bunch of crap! I'll definitely need to chip away at that with my Jackson Hewitt seasonal income next winter. I owe around $15k total on the Home Depot and Lowe's cards right now, and I've owed that much for about half a year on a rotating basis. I pay a few hundred or more on the card balances, I buy a few hundred or more worth of stuff. Almost all of it is special financing so I need to stay on top of it or else I'll get hosed with some gestapo-like 25% rate. The interest on the special financing goes all the way back to the date of purchase, too. For the $4500 I dropped in one bulk purchase last spring that would be $1000 in interest added on if I don't pay that off before spring 2017. By that point it will be $2000 in interest. What a bunch of crap!

I started the back deck on the addition yesterday, and today I split my time working on the deck outside and the hall inside. The weather was great so working outside all day would have been awesome, but that hall needs to get finished as well. I've been outside a lot over the past three days with house work and lawn-mowing so I'm getting a decent tan. Today I got the skeleton of the deck built, the 6" posts and the joists. Now it's ready for decking and railings. A full day of work on the thing would have it done with time to spare, but unfortunately I will be busy doing other things so I bet I don't get that deck done until later next week at the earliest.

^Will be a 5x10 deck with no stairs; it's actually more of a balcony for the upstairs bedroom (Katherine's room.) That angled old piece of scrap wood attached to the right-side post is just temporarily there to keep it from becoming a parallellogram. So far it's straight and level. Mostly. Hehehehe.

I also bought the siding for the back side of the house. I'll pick away at that this month on decent weather days, and on crappy weather days I'll work on the inside. Getting everything done will feel great; if all goes as I hope then I can have everything done by the time I go blueberry raking in about 8 weeks. I don't want to be screwing around with this home addition into next fall. I thought I could get most of it done in 6 months when I started last August, and now 9.5 months later I'm still in for a lot more work before it is 100% done. What a bunch of crap!

Unfortunately, next week I won't be able to work much on our house because I need to put some work into my old apartment. Dillon, Debbie, and their friend Mandy were all living there since they switched over from my Bangor duplex to that apartment last October, but Dillon moved in with us back in February. Back then he hauled on his chick (Debbie), but since then he and Debbie are back together so now Debbie is moving in with us and Mandy is going to live with friends in Old Town. Dillon and Debbie will share Kat's studio/Dillon's bedroom so once again my Sweet Pea won't be able to use her studio for some time to come.

It only took me two showings to get my old apartment rented out. Oh Jesus, hell ya! I posted the place on Craigslist one evening about 1.5 weeks ago, and by early afternoon the next day I pulled the ad. I met with people who wanted the place before they could even see it! They did the application before the actual showing, I ran their info and stamped APPROVED, and we finalized everything just yesterday when they came to give me a deposit. They even paid for paint for the place. Awesome! The apartment doesn't need paint badly, but fresh paint is never a bad thing. These people seem to love the place, and they seem decent. He's retired Navy, 56 years old, and she's 53. Hopefully they're not Giblet-Heads.

Copperpot is 6.5 months old now. He had an old soccer ball that he found abandoned at the park that he finally popped, but he still loves to drag it around in the yard in the hopes we will play with him, maybe try to steal it and/or kick it for him. We're hoping to get him a friend, another puppy, but so far the right dog for the right price hasn't presented itself to us. We adore Copperpot so we hoped the breeder who sold him to us would have more puppies, but sadly if she has any more it won't be until the fall/early winter.

^Popped his ball. If we can find another Golden Retriever puppy so he has a friend then we'll be very happy. We miss Cheza a lot.

I need to hop off this bootleg blog that almost no one reads so I can do tax training* while I hang out up at The Roost for Kat's karaoke show. Now that UMO is on summer break the owners switched karaoke from Wed to Thurs nights on a trial basis. I don't really enjoy hanging out up here, but at least I can get on the Interweb and be somewhat productive. Plus the Red Sox were on earlier (ugly loss. What a bunch of crap!) and then game one of the NBA finals came on so I had some background entertainment. Oh, I also went over to Tim's Little Big Store to buy some cheap beer. Score!

*Tax training in June?! I'm still on the JH payroll as part of what they call the FLEX FORCE program. I have to do 4 credit-hours of online tax school each month to maintain my active status. I get paid for it, too. Oh Jesus hell ya!

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