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 8-18 9-18

"She's a good boss. I've been to jail twice and she hasn't fired me." -Drunk Jester's patron and employee in the restaurant in that same plaza.


Tuesday, 10-30-18: Awesome Red Sox! Also, deer.
The Patriots beat the Bills last night on Monday Night Football and are now 6-2 and in first place in the division. Awesome! Even better, the night before the Red Sox beat the Dodgers in game 5 of the World Series to become the champs who run the camp for the 4th time in the last 15 years. The Red Sox had an AMAZING season this year, one of the best seasons ever for any baseball team. They won 108 regular-season games and steamrolled through the playoffs.

^Congrats to the 2018 Red Sox!

Yesterday was a busy day for my loser ass. I worked a couple hours in the morning before a jog, some paperwork, and a trip down to the ol' homestead. Last week I gave my bonus antlerless deer tag to Jason via online transfer, and two days later he shot a nice 126-lb doe with his bow and used that tag. Great for him! Bowhunting is not easy, and he is really good at it. When I gave him that tag I didn't know he was going to shoot a deer two days later and then not want any of the meat. He called me right after he shot the deer and said he just shot a 90-pound doe, and he wanted me to drive down to get it so I could have the meat. It was evening, and I was all done for the day. Last thing I wanted to do was drive 3 hours for a deer. Much as I love having deer meat I don't need it that desperately.

So I told him to donate the meat to the "Hunters for the Hungry" state program; Thin Blue Line Meats down there could take care of it all. He said okay fine, but then about an hour later Dad called and said it was a pretty big 125-lb doe (she weighed in at 126 so he made a GREAT guess there) and I shouldn't donate it because he wanted half the meat in case he didn't get a deer. I said okay fine, but it would be a few days before I could come get it. He said no worries or something to that effect, and life went on as normal.

My plan yesterday was to leave after lunch, stop by Thin Blue Line to get the meat, head over to Mom and Dad's, drop off their half and then go for a PM hunt with Dad and Jason. Unfortunately when I called Dad yesterday he said he didn't want any of the meat. OMG WTF?! He said he only wanted the deer as a sort-of backup plan in case he didn't get a deer. HEY POP ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?! IF I HAD KNOWN THAT THEN I WOULD HAVE JUST TOLD JASON TO DONATE ALL THE DEER. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! By then it was a done deal, the deer was already all butchered and on ice, so I had to get it. There is quite a bit of meat, maybe 40-50 pounds (I ain't weighing it just a guess there but a pretty good guess.), but I would have rather had only half that amount and paid half the cost, too. ($111 for the butchering.) Dad still offered to pay half, but F that I don't want his dirty-whore money unless he is getting something for it. Mom and Dad's money is probably not really dirty whore money since they have both worked really hard in their lives, but that is a fun thing to write. Hehehe.

I don't get it. Is Pop starting to lose his marbles a little? Their freezers in their house are friggin' packed full. I brought blueberries for Mom yesterday, and I had a hard time finding a place for the quart-sized frozen bag of them. All I wanna know is why? Why would he say he wanted half and then not want it? He swears he didn't say he definitely wanted half, but Jason agrees with me that Dad definitely seemed to want it.

I guess I am not upset about the deer meat because I like to eat it, but it seems I am mostly the only one who eats it and I really don't need as much as I have. I'll give some of it to Gavin and Mike if I do shoot my own deer, and if I don't shoot my own deer then at least the freezer is quite full right now. Not only do I have all of that doe from Jason, but I also still have 3 packages left from the deer I shot one year ago.

I didn't see any deer during our hunt yesterday PM, but Jason missed a buck and Dad shot a doe from his blind out back. Funny note, it was POURING rain midafternoon, and if the rains were going to continue then Dad was going to skip his hunt and stick Jason and I in his blind out back. However, I knew Dad really wanted to hunt and the rains did let up so Jason and I were able to go to a nearby spot. If it had kept downpouring then maybe Jason or I would have shot that doe. I'm glad Dad get his deer, and I know he is glad as well. Now he can do some more bird hunting and when I go down again in a couple weeks I can hunt from that blind out back!

I don't really care if I get a deer or not this season, but I would like to get one up here with my bow or at least have a chance at one. I still have A LOT of work to do at our building so my time is limited. Plus if I get a deer I'll have to butcher it (or pay another Benji to have someone do it for me) and that takes up a full work day of my precious... precious time. Now that I think about it more having all that deer meat really does take all the pressure off to get a deer. Plus I can eat A LOT of deer meat and that is awesome. Even at $111 for it all that price is still tons better than the cost of steaks and burger at the grocery store, and it is a lot leaner and healthier as well. I'm sure that grocery store cow meat is all slop-fed and full of detrimental fats and/or chemicals whereas the deer meat in our freezer is hugely more healthy to consume.



Saturday, 10-27-18: 28.25 hours.
I only worked 28.25 hours at our newest property this week. OMG it felt like double that. What a bunch of crap! All I wanna know is why? Why did I fail to be there more? I took last Sunday off there, Monday I had to quite early for our chimney cleaning (first time ever having it cleaned after 4+ years = epic fail. Oh well we don't use it that often.) Tuesday was a trip to the ER with Kat (thankfully not a blown-out appendix as feared), Wednesday I did get a solid 7.25 hours of work done there. However, Thursday I bagged out early to play rball and yesterday I took the afternoon off to spend time with my awesome wife and to deer hunt.

I guess I need to drop the hammer a bit on this job if I want to get it done, ever. I definitely worked more than 28.25 hours this week because of other obligations. Thankfully when I was over at North Main I was very productive. I have been tracking my hours because I like knowing how long this shit takes. It actually is a little depressing because it all takes a LONG time. However, the fruits of all that work wil bear soon when I start finishing rooms upstairs and when the back deck and siding is done.

I did get the siding done up the electrical-service side on a windy and cold Thursday so now that can hopefully be tied in within the next 2-3 weeks. The two things I need done that I can't 100% control before I can have Dillon, Debbie, and Travis move in are the new furnace and that electrical. The electric is critical. The furnace there works now so a new heating unit is less critical, but I don't want them moving in and then we have a brutal cold snap when I'm trying to get a new furnace installed. I'd guess the place will have no heat for the better part of a day or two for that install...

^I actually finished that yesterday morning when it was cold but not as cold as the day prior. I can't finish the rest of that siding until the eletrical is switched over because those wires off to the right that feed into the building from the garage are in the way. What a bootleg bunch of crap those wires are. I can't wait to make them disappear forever.

^From a couple days ago, the upstairs living room. Today I finished that ceiling and the sheetrock sanding in that room. Oh Jesus hell ya! Now I can paint and install the window trim for three windows in there. By this time next week I expect that living room to be done. By this time in a couple weeks I hope most of that apartment is 100% done!

Kat is DJing a wedding here in South Brewer and I am on dog-duty. Right now the three dogs are sleeping, but earlier they were having a blast at the park and before that they were with me over at North Main. I'll go back to that wedding in a couple hours to help her finish it up and to get all the gear home. Unfortunately it is pouring rain and 35 degrees so bringing all that in will be a bunch of crap. It was actually snowing earlier and we got a slushy coating in spots. What a bunch of crap! I'm looking forward to getting her and the gear home so we can bivouac and hopefully get a good night's sleep. Last night's Jester's Halloween party was pretty fun, but it was a late night. I got boozed up pretty hard, but thankfully I do not have a hangover today. Awesome! The World Series game was on still when we left at 0145 because it went 18 friggin' innings. Longest WS game, ever. 7 hours and 20 minutes, and even worse the Dodgers won the game. What a bunch of crap! Sox still have a 2-1 series lead, but the Dodgers are favored to win tonight since the Sox used up all their pitchers last night, or so it seems.



Friday, 10-26-18: My bootleg Halloween costume.
I'm dressed up like Han Solo from Star Wars right now, and my costume is a piece of shit. Even worse, it cost me $50. What a bunch of crap! What a waste of our precious... precious money. My awesome wife is Princess Leia as in the Leia from ROTJ, 1983, when she was a Jabba-the-Hutt slave. Right before she strangled his fat ass to death over the Sarlacc Pit on Tattoine. Man, ROTJ is a fucking awesome movie and if you disagree then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more.

^From ROTJ when Leia kills that fat, slimy, walrus-looking piece of shit knows as Jabba the Hutt. Hehehe. My wife makes that costume look great. Obviously not Jabba but hot-ass Leia. RIP Carrie Fisher.

I'm getting fairly liquored up right now. I think I am sober enough to get back to the bar. I only came home briefly to play with the dogs since Groot is NOT ready for 6 hours of unsupervised home alone. That would be like a bad John Hughes 1990 movie but with a dog instead of a young and charismatic McCauley Kulkin. However, Joe Peschi would not come to rob us because our house is mediorce at best. And maybe haunted? I have not seen ghosts but hell half the time there are deer and I don't see them because I have no ATD (attention to detail.) That last sentence was an exaggeration, but for-sure I have fallen asleep in the woods in the past and woken up to see deer going by. What a bunch of crap!

I don't give a fuck about Halloween. I don't give a fuck about half the holidays on this planet because I have problems. Around Halloween all I really want to do is go deer hunting, and that is what I did tonight. It was my first hunt of the 2018 deer hunting seaon, and it was a great night for it. Unfortunately, it was cold with temps in the 30s and with some wind. My fingers went numb. What a bunch of crap! I didn't see any deer in my blind not far from "Supertree", but I did see deer in the field by the houses on the way out. Oh, I also saw a deer not far from where I park. Walk 0.53 miles into the deeper woods and see jack friggin shit and be 100 yards from where I park and see 5 deer. Epic fail.

Mr. Rogers is on my TV right now during the 7th inning stretch in game 7 of the World Series. Mr. Rogers was fucking awesome, and he represented all that is good about mankind. Hopefully in real life he was actually a good man, too. I've never heard of any scandals with him so let's just assume he didn't pokerize fat chicks when his wife was not looking. Was he even married? I dunno, but probably because 90% of the populace gets married even though 50% of all marriages fail. How sad is that fact?

It is the 8th inning now in game 3 in LA, and the Sox have a 2-0 series lead. However, this game is 1-0 Dodgers in the 8th so odds are it will soon be 2-1 Sox in the best-of-7-World Series. If the Red Sox can come back to win then awesome because that would be a 3-0 lead.

Alright turds, all two of youz, the dogs are tired and I am going back to the bar dressed as a bootleg Han Solo. I think this is my last year wearing a costume becuse I don't even care... whether or not I care. What a bunch of crap! You kids get off my lawn...

^Just throw me in it because I don't even deserve things. Oh, in RoboCop Ed 209 is awesome! The end. Fin.



Thursday, 10-25-18: Another early morning.
Revielle for my loser ass has been before 0600 every day this week; this morning it was 0535. I don't really mind getting up early as long as we can bivouac at a decent-enough time. Last night I fell asleep I'd guess a bit after 2200. We watched some of the Red Sox - Dodgers World Series game 2 at Fenway Park in Boston, and when we shut the TV off the Sox were down 2-1 in the 4th inning. Thankfully the Sox scored 3 more runs and ended up winning the game 4-2. Oh Jesus hell ya! They also won game 1 so now they are up 2-0 in the best-of-7 series. Game 3 will be Friday night in LA, but I won't watch very much if any of that game because Friday is Kat's big Halloween party at Jester's. Every year for Halloween they open up the attached restaurant and have a huge party there. On a normal Friday I'll go help her set up and then come back home for a while, but tomorrow I'll likely stay most or all of the night. I might have to come home for a bit to check on the dogs, but I won't stay home for long.

We got snow here yesterday, but nothing accumulated. It was windy and raw, and all week the weather has been terrible. Several inches of snow did accumulate in the mountains and up north. Thankfully I have plenty of interior work to keep me going on our newest property, but I do need to get this siding installed most of the way up on the left side where the new electrical panel is located:

I'm hoping I can do that today, but with a high temp of around 40 and stiff NW winds I only have a 50/50 chance. If anything stops me from exterior work today it will be the wind. I had city code look at it Tuesday, and they want me to throw some more siding on before they sign off on the new service. Getting that new service installed is VERY important so I need to get that siding done above the panel so I can get Scott from Emera to schedule my install. They actually have to run a new line from the nearest utility pole on the street to the building. No one can move in until that is done, and my November 15th ready-date is looming larger by the day.

Second on my required list is the furnace. Thankfully the 23-year old oil furnace there now still seems to be working great, but I want it gone and I want a gas furnace. When we were on vacation Bangor Gas did install a line and meter so oh Jesus hell ya to that! They were supposed to do my friggin' line last month, but epic fail by them there. What a bunch of crap! Oh well not a huge problem since I still have 1/4 to 3/8 of a tank of oil to use up. I did connect with my heating guy, and he has me on the schedule for a November 8th install of a brand new furnace.

I've had to keep the heat on at the place since we got back from vacation not only so my sheetrock mud can dry but also so I don't freeze while I work. I thought the thermostat was downstairs since there is a thermostat wire there by the cellar door so I hooked up a brand new thermostat there, but after a couple days I realized it was not working properly. I'd set it at 50, but the furnace would keep running even at 60 degrees. Epic fail there. Finally I realized that wire leads to jack friggin' shit and the heat is controlled by a thermostat in the upstairs living room that was set at about 65 degrees. What a bunch of crap! I definitely plan to move that thermostat to the downstairs since only one thermostat will control the heat for the entire building (one forced hot-air system.)

This season I got not only a doe permit for rifle hunting but also a bonus tag to shoot a second antlerless deer. Score! However, not really because I do not want to shoot two deer with my rifle. I'd prefer to get one with my bow up here and maybe a second with my rifle down in the midcoast. So I transferred my bonus tag over to Jason last Saturday, and on Tuesday night he shot a big 126-lb doe with his bow. He said I could have the meat since his freezer is full, but Dad also wants some of it and I don't even want to drive down to get it yet. The doe is at the butcher down there now so hopefully I can go get some of the meat early next week and also combine the trip with a rifle hunt Monday afternoon. Rifle season starts Saturday, but I won't go that day because Kat has a wedding that I'll help her with and also the weather looks to fall apart again hard Sat PM as a huge nor'easter moves up the coast. (rain and 39 degrees forecast now. What a bunch of crap!)

^Nice deer, bro! That is a big doe.

Hopefully I can have my first hunt of the season tomorrow evening from about 1600-1800 up here with my bow in the expanded archery area. Last Sunday I brought the dogs with me as I swapped out my trail-cam card and made a little ground blind in there. The dogs LOVE coming with me, but I can only bring them Sundays since that is the only day no other hunters would be in there actually hunting. I have lots of deer activity at all hours of the day, but no huge bucks moving in the day. Just this one awesome 10-pointer in there around 0330:

^I'd love to see him walk by during my hunt, broadside at about 20 yards, but I'd be happy to shoot a doe or a small buck. I've never been a trophy hunter I just enjoy being in the woods and seeing any deer and even all the other wildlife including birds, squirrels, turkeys, owls, etc.



Sunday, 10-21-18: It got cold gods damn it.
While we were away on our road-trip vacation last week the weather took a dump. Gone are the days in the 50s and 60s, and for the next week we're looking at conditions that are more suitable for mid-November instead of mid-October. What a bunch of crap!


We got home Thursday to huge winds and a temperature barely above 40; it was so windy when we were gone that the brand new grill cover that I had just bought before we left blew away. It is gone. The Nothing came and took it away like it once took away the beautiful lake from the Rock Biters in the north in The Neverending Story. What a bunch of crap!

It was 62 degrees yesterday, but I could not do any exterior work at our new property because Kat had a wedding to DJ so I spent some time helping her with that. The wedding was at Alamoosook in Orland (nice place) a half-hour away so I went with her to help set up and then I came back home so I could watch the dogs. I did go for a jog, and I did bring the dogs with me to our new building so I could install some ceiling tiles in the living room upstairs. When I take the dogs with me to that property I can only work inside since I don't need them running off and right into Main Street if I were to have them outside.

I wanted to finish most of my exterior work during the last 1.5 weeks of this month, but I might end up doing more on the inside. I can work outside when it is in the 40s, no problem there, but when it starts off in the 20s then it seems to take half the damn day to warm up enough. Doing siding when it is very cold sucks because the vinyl is more apt to crack when cut. Also I can forget exterior painting when it is below 50 degrees. Caulking does not dry well when it is cold either. We're looking at temps 10-15 degrees BELOW average all next week. What a bunch of crap!

I have to finish the back deck there, but all I need are a few railings, balusters, and one 4x4 support for the steps. I guess a few more galvanized 1/2" carriage and lag bolts would be a good idea, too. I'd prefer to overbuild that deck since it is 12 feet off the ground and quite the structure. I also need to finish the back siding, but I think that will only take 3-4 hours. The south siding is 100% done, and the north siding is 1/3 done. The front of the building will take a while because I have two bay windows, two doors, and a porch to do before I can even start that siding.

I'm hoping to have the upstairs apartment and most of the exterior work all done by November 15th. That is an ambitious goal that really only gives me 3.5 weeks if I want to stick to it. If I work 30-35 hours a week there I think I can pull it off. (Other work pulls me away each week at least a little.) 120 hours of work should put me in good shape as long as I don't screw it all up. 20 hours for the ceilings, 25 for the remaining sheetrock work and all window/door trim, 15 for the kitchen finish work (cabinet stain, countertops, backsplashes, etc) 10 for painting and misc, and 20 for the flooring. What the hell does that all add up to? Guy does math... 90 hours needed so that's 30 to spare. Score! It will take me more than 30 hours to do the exterior, but the most important exterior stuff should fit in. That's all assuming I can stay on schedule, though. It also assumes my rough time estimate actually holds true. Two very big assumptions, and when you assume you make an ass out of "u" and "me." Hehehehe.

Worst case if I am not done by Nov 15th it's not that huge of a deal since Dillon, Debbie, and Travis are moving in and they have a nice place to live right here with us for the time being. I know they are excited to move in since it is a little cramped here for the three of them; they will double their space in that apartment next month. I also want to get them in there so I can generate some revenue from the place. I'm working on my budget for that building now, and I hope when I am done with all my numbers I end up somewhere near the break-even point. I think I will. I hope I will!



Saturday, 10-20-18: A few vacation photos.
I lost my motivation to keep writing about our vacation during last night's bootleg update so today I'll throw a few photos on here from our trip and post some thoughts on the whole experience. I guess I'll keep a bit of it more in bullet-point mode since there is a lot that I could write about. A LOT.

Last night I wrote about how our first day ended up being a shit-show thanks to torrential downpours and a lack of experience using a camper. The guy who rented us the camper was nice enough, but it's hard to learn the ins and outs in a deluge. I got soaked just getting the thing hooked onto the car. What a bunch of crap! We weren't too impressed with that whole experience, but we did make it to our campground just north of Washington DC that night.

Friday morning we set out south and west towards our ultimate destination, Cleveland, Georgia. We spent Friday last week mostly in Virginia, and along the way we stopped and saw the Shenendoah Caverns. Those were great, but at $25 each a tad steep in cost...

^A very nice place to visit in western VA.

We made it to Cleveland, GA on Saturday and, after having a terrible time just finding the local Papa John's pizza place, we had a nice night at Leisure Acres campground. We did the bootleg and way overpriced North Georgia zoo Sunday, and Kat got to play with otters:

^More on the zoo later.

We slept Sunday night in a WalMart parking lot, and thankfully it was not cold outside because there was no propane for the heater (although I could have bought some easily enough.) On Monday we hit traffic but did make it safely back to DC. Tuesday was our long day because not only did we tour the famous sights in DC but we also went to Smackdown 1000 that night.

I really liked seeing our nation's capital, and my favorite was the Lincoln Memorial. It was incredibly humbling seeing what our forefathers created and their vision for this great nation. We also saw some of the Smithsonian and paid $20 for a sandwich, drink, and chips. We walked a few miles that day.

WWE Smackdown 1000 was a very special show because it was the 1000th episode of the program. We bought $466 tickets, and we almost got pwned on that since the Giblet-Head who sold them on StubHub never sent them to us. What a bunch of crap! Thankfully Kat reached out to StubHub and a nice person helped us get better seats for no extra cost (part of their guarantee good thing we didn't buy the tickets off Craigslist!)

^Third row back oh Jesus Hell ya! The people who sat next to us said they just walked up to the box office and paid $115 each for their tickets, half what we paid when we bought ours two months ago. Gods damn it! Oh well it was still worth it.

^The UNDERTAKER closed out the show even though all he pretty much said was "At the next pay-per-view DX will rest in peace." HHH and Shawn Michaels are fighting Kane and 'Taker in a couple weeks. It is the battle of the old guys; Michaels had been retired for around 8 years, too. Wow! 'Taker is around 53 years old so I don't think he has much more wrestling left in him. He's still awesome, though. One of the best wrestlers ever.

Also on Smackdown 1000 was Vince McMahon, Shane and Stephanie McMahon, Edge, Ric Flair, HHH, The Big Show, AJ Styles, and too many other great performers to name. We recorded the show, and we had friends back home watching it who saw us appear a few times when the camera swept our way. How cool is that?! A nationally televised very special show that we witnessed in person.

In conclusion, the trip had some great times like seeing the caverns, seeing the otters, seeing DC and watching Smackdown 1000 live. It was also a great way to break up the monotony of everyday life and to gain a new appreciation of our little corner of the world here in central Maine. However, it had some terrible times as well. Here are a few of the low-lights:

-CAMPER: Renting a 20-foot camper that we really knew nothing about and then a day into the trip having it run totally out of propane. Yeah, the guy who rented it to us sent us on our way with a tank on fumes. What a bunch of crap! He said he checked it and it was half-full. We could have just filled it, but by the time we realized it the trip was mostly over. Also he sent us on our trip with a bunch of DVDs for his TV, but the DVD player did not even work because it was not hooked up. What a bunch of crap! Nice guy but no 5-star review coming his way from us, that's for sure

-PARKING: Not only parking the camper (almost could not leave the bootleg North Georgia zoo because we had the camper attached and other cars were in the way. I had to maneuver the hell out of that in reverse to make it work.) but also parking in DC. We rented a space in a parking garage for $24 for the whole day. A fair price for the city, right? Unfortunately, the scan-thing to let us back into the garage did not work and no one could help us fix it so we had to leave Smackdown about 30-45 minutes before the end (the "dark" matches) so we didn't get locked out of that parking garage late-night when no one else was going in. What a bunch of crap!

-ZOO: F off North Georgia zoo. That place is bootleg and not worth what they charge. They say it is a nonprofit and all the proceeds go back into the place, but I have doubts. The otter experience was over $200 and then an extra $55 for the photos, and the guy taking photos was using a cellphone. OMG EPIC FAIL. Plus not only did we have to pay all that money for the otter encounter but we also had to pay $30 each just for the zoo admission. The two otters were amazing, but we only really got a few minutes with them because we were in a group of 8 and we had to share time. I could write paragraphs about that place, but I'll move on.

-TRAFFIC. Tons of traffic including several nasty traffic jams. We saw one horrible jam in CT where it looked like a car burned right down to its frame. Looked terrible, and thankfully we were not a part of that accident. Also tolls can F off. We spent a total of HOURS in traffic jams throughout the trip. Even on the drive home Thursday morning we hit a lot of traffic trying to connect to I-495 in western Mass. I avoided Boston, but there was just no winning.

-BRIDGE: The Tappanzee Bridge, a favorite of mine when I was a kid, is cancelled and in its place is a Mario Cuomo Bridge. Fair enough I know bridges wear out and need replacing, but I told Kat to get ready to take some pics because you can see the distant NY City skyline from the bridge. However, you really can't see it because the new bridge has some huge fence (suicide prevention?) What a bunch of crap! I miss the Tappanzee; on that bridge you had a better view.

I'll close with the photo of our final odometer reading from the trip:


Friday, 10-19-18: I have too much to write tonight so just a start on it all will suffice.
Wow, I have a lot on my docket tonight for this bootleg update that two people will ever read. We drove 2647 miles over eight days from the 11th through yesterday, we saw much, we had fun times, and we had terrible times. We got home from our epic road-trip/Goonie adventure yesterday around 1500, and today has been the first back-to-normal day in nearly a week and a half. I worked on our newest property getting the heat going and installing ceiling tiles in the upstairs living room. I actually just got home from working over there just a few minutes ago, around 2200. After I helped my Sweet Pea set up at Jester's I took the dogs over there for 1.25 hours so I could do more ceiling install and drink a coffee brandy and milk. It seems often this year I go work for about 1-1.5 hours on Friday nights after I help set up for the karaoke show, and I enjoy doing it. I can even take the dogs with me so bonus for them and for us because it helps to wear them out so they will sleep when we sleep.*

The Red Sox beat the Astros last night for a 3 games to one series victory, and now they will advance to the World Series to play the winner of the Dodgers-Brewers National League playoff games. Sox in the World Series = Oh Jesus hell ya! I haven't watched very much of the playoffs because I have too much else going on. Plus I am old and many of the playoff games have started after 2000 which means they don't end until after 2300, and that is way past our bedtime these days. What a bunch of crap!

I have many gigabytes of photos from our long road-trip vacation, and I really don't know where to start with it all. Thankfully my awesome wife takes a lot of pictures because I epic fail in the photograph department. We left Thursday morning last week around 0700, and we barely made it to Cherry Hill RV Park/Campground just north of Washington DC that night as planned. When I say we barely made it I mean it, too. We hit heavy downpours from the remnants of a hurricane (SERIOUSLY), we hit all kinds of traffic in NY, and we had to stop to pick up our camper for the week in MD before we could even bivouac. It started pouring when we were hooking up the camper so I got soaked. Gods damn it!

^The rains at times were ridiculous during the day, but then at night it became a deluge at the time we were getting our camper and for the drive to Cherry Hill. That night-drive was terrifying because the rains made the visibility horrible and I was not used to how Kat's Acadia handled with a 3500-pound trailer in tow. (Vehicle is rated for around 5000 max towing.) I barely got us there, and at one point I considered bring the trailer back and just staying in a hotel. Even though it was later in the evening there was still enough traffic in the Baltimore area to be intimidating, but F it we stayed in the right lane and went a bit below the speed limit. We had HEAVY rain that night. What a bunch of crap! Then late-night the rains ended, a front came through, and by morning it was cold. Epic fail!

On Friday morning last week we started our drive west into Virginia. The winds hit us hard, HARD, but oh well at least we stayed on the road and once we got to I-81 the winds were not as bad. At first the trailer hitch was making all kinds of noise and I considered just bringing it back and using hotels once again, but F that we would have blown a ton of precious... precious money if we had to do that so we just made it work. I did get more used to the trailer, and I got pretty good at backing it up as needed. I didn't want to have to back it up that much, but when you are a tourist and don't know exactly where you will end up then a little REVERSE is going to be required.

Was renting a camper instead of just staying in hotels the right thing for us to do? Right now we both can say HELL NO. That camper was a pain in the arse, bigtime. Yeah our average cost of a campground was half that of a hotel, but the headache and gas cost made it not worthwhile. There were things we didn't see because it is too hard to turn around with a trailer. We spent almost exactly $500 in gas, the camper was $600-ish, and the campgrounds all added up to around $300. We also did spend $67 for a hotel in Mass for our final night, Wednesday night, and we "boondocked" in a WalMart parking lot Sunday night in NC. If we had stayed in hotels I'd guess our lodging cost for those 7 nights would have been closer to $1000, but we would not have had the camper rental cost and we would have "only" spent closer to $300 in gas. Oh well hindsight is always 20/20.

*Only happens about 50% of the time. What a bunch of crap!



Wednesday, 10-10-18: Last day of work before our vacation!
As usual I have not accomplished what I had hoped to accomplish before we take our vacation tomorrow. What a bunch of crap! Oh well, at least I got close on some things. I do have a few hours today to work, but finishing the back deck and siding at our new property and finishing a few other things over there is not going to happen. Even the white trim paint is not yet 100% done. Epic fail me. Doing the trim work over at Deno's new house over the past week cost me precious... precious time. I put in about 9 hours over at his house which doesn't seem like a whole lot, but it is when I have so much else to do.

Here is the north-facing side of our building; I worked on that for 6.5 hours on Monday and got a lot of the siding done. Prepping and working around that electrical panel took extra precious... precious time. Bruce and Kevin were also there Monday and they ran most of the water lines. They spent 1.5 days at the property over Sunday and Monday so now I won't need plumbing for a month because their rough-in is essentially done. Oh Jesus Hell ya!

Seems a little dumb to start another side when I still have the back and the deck to finish, but I wanted Bruce to get a new exterior spigot installed and to pull the old one that used to be in the front corner under the electrical panel so it was a win for me. None of that electrical panel is live; I need to call Emera when we get back from vacation and schedule that hookup because I can't rent the place until the new service is active. No huge rush since November 15 is my target completion date for the upstairs apartment.

I just called the IRS and got right through without having to wait on hold. AWESOME. I need fingerprint cards to be sent, and then I need to have the police station do my fingerprints. After that I send it all back to the IRS and hopefully get approved as an ERO so I will be able to e-file people's taxes. I still have so much carpentry to do before my office space on the first floor of the building pictured above is even done, but I also need to be moving forward with my tax stuff so I don't get caught totally unprepared in early 2019 when I *hopefully* can start doing taxes for people.

I took the dogs to the park, it is now 1051, and Kat is at a doc appt. Hopefully the checkup goes well and we can have lunch together before I finish my last few things for the day. I'd like to go for a jog before rain showers move in later (very warm yesterday PM and today, 70s, but cold front coming) and mow my last couple lawns. I got my mowers back from the shop last week, but bye $146 for that, and within the first 10 minutes of mowing at our new property I hit a piece of rebar on the right side of the old bootleg garage and destroyed my blade. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP! I can only hope I didn't bend the shaft. Thankfully I had the other mower, and that worked well enough yesterday. This morning I bought a new blade and installed it so I'll find out later if the shaft on my older mower is pwned.

All I wanna know is why? Why was that rebar there? It was not on a property line. I took my sledge and hammered the hell out of it so hopefully it is deep into the ground now. Lesson learned from now on I will just weedwack that edge in case more bootleg rebar is there. It was a thick piece, too. I was pretty pissed off when it happened, I swore a lot, and to make matters worse I failed again at separating our personal stuff from the business stuff. I had our shears, a trash barrel, and our tarp over at the property when my awesome wife was looking to use them. So not only was I fighting to get the ruined blade off the mower but I was also pissing off my wife at the same time. Epic fail me.

I really hope I didn't bend the shaft in the mower because it had never run better before I hit that rebar. I was just thinking it was like having a brand new (3-4 year old) mower since I got it back from the shop. Jim's Small Engine in Orrington really hooked me up and then I totally blew it by ramming some old rebar. The mower was all cleaned up with a brand new blade and it ran like a boss until I failed at life. What a bunch of crap!

We are leaving tomorrow morning and heading south for our vacation. We expect to drive 2600-2700 total miles and hopefully see some awesome stuff from the northeast all the way down to north Georgia and back. Part of me wishes I had a little more time to work on the building before our vacation, but the break will be good and it will be fun. Plus my right arm needs a break from hammering, sanding, drilling, etc. I haven't been able to play racquetball for 1.5 weeks, and the thing isn't healing too well when I use it every day. I don't know if it is tennis elbow or something else, but I do know it is a bunch of crap. Whatever it is the effect is a numb and tingling right hand that usually doesn't bother me too much in the day but that affects me a lot at night and often wakes me up. Oh well at least lately I get most of a night's sleep. Groot wakes us up early anyway, and I don't mind getting up early because usually I always have a lot to do every single day. (MY OWN DAMN FAULT GODS DAMN IT.)

The Red Sox beat the Yankees last night to advance to the ALCS vs. the Houston Astros. Oh Jesus, hell ya! The Sox took the series three games to one. Houston will be tough because they are the defending world champs.



Friday, 10-05-18: One ceiling 100% done.
The upstairs apartment in the building that Kat and I bought at the end of July this year is about 900 square feet, give or take, and I will be installing ceiling tiles in every single square foot of that place. Actually I take that back, there are three closets that will not need new ceilings so *maybe* I only have to do 850 square feet or so of ceilings in the place. We won't even consider the 900 square feet of downstairs that will need double 5/8 sheetrock tonight because that work will be a challenge next month.

I just finished the larger of the two bedroom ceilings 100% and the kitchen ceiling is 95% done so I am making good progress overall. The living room is the largest of them all, but I already have a good part of that prepped for install. The prep takes the longest, and once that is done the tiles themselves go fast. I pretty much just pick away at the ceilings doing an hour or two here and there as time permits. I find the ceilings are a good thing to do on Friday nights because I can bring the dogs and get half in the bag and still *mostly* do it right. As an added bonus when I bring the dogs in the evening it keeps them awake more. Dogs being awake when we are awake in a win because then they are more likely to bivouac when we bivouac. At least in theory. Groot doesn't sleep the whole night too often. What a bunch of crap!

I only worked on our property for 4.5 hours today because I had to get my two lawn mowers from the shop (bye bye $146, a fair enough price for the two) and do some more trim at Deno's new house. Finding the time to work at our new place for a full day start to finish is nearly impossible, but some of that is my own doing when I decide to quite a little early so I can jog or to start a bit later (0815 instead of 0730!) so I can do DDP Yoga with my awesome wife.

The weather was decent this afternoon so I spent a couple hours on the deck stairs. I also got a fair amount of vinly siding installed this week including 100% of the south side so now it looks like this on the back two sides:

^Starting to look damn good! I figure I have a solid full day's worth of work to finish the stairs and the deck because the stair stringers are not 100% in place yet. Railings, balusters, and carriage bolts/additional supports will take up a lot of my precious... precious time. The rest of the siding under the deck and off to the left should take no more than a few hours total. Maybe? Hopefully! I'd like to get that deck and back siding 100% done in the next 3 days so I can spend Tuesday and Wednesday working on the north siding (between the building and the bootleg garage in that photo.) Then after our vacation I can work on the front side for a week or so. The front will be a challenge because I need two bay windows, two new doors, and a porch as well as the siding.

In other news the Red Sox beat the Yankees at Fenway 5-4 tonight in game 1 of the ALDS. Oh Jesus hell ya! Or is it ALCS? I dunno, but I think the ALCS comes next in the playoffs. First is the best-of-5 series that is now and then the one after is best-of-7. The World Series is also best-of-7. The Yankoffs beat the A's Wednesday for the "Wild Card" spot and now are once again playing the Red Sox. Hopefully the Sox can crush the Yankees and advance to play the winner of the Astros vs Indians series.



Thursday, 10-04-18: Rambo V is coming!
This news headline is among the few other headlines in the movies/TV section of 411mania.com right now:

^OMG RAMBO PART 5 IS ACTUALLY FILMING NOW. OH JESUS HELL YA! For years there have been off and on stories about a potential Rambo V. A few years back it seemed like it was going to happen, but then Stallone said it was not going to happen. What a bunch of crap! Stallone is around 70 years old, maybe 71 or 72, and father time is not on his side so he needs to crank out as many movies as he can before he checks out. Stallone and Rambo are both awesome and if you disagree with me then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more.

Here is the first photo from that news headline:

Rambo from war-torn overseas to... starring in a modern western in the vein of Eastwood? No clue, but supposedly he is a ranch hand in AZ who has to go to Mexico to rescue a kidnapped granddaughter of a friend.

Old Stallone is just as awesome as young in-his-prime-Stallone. In fact old Stallone might be better because he has this awesome grizzled and charismatic presence about him. I would actually say the same thing about Schwarzenegger, but Stallone is a better actor (pains me to say because I mean no ill will towards the other action icon.) Stallone will also be appearing in Creed 2 later this year, and we just watched the trailer for that movie a few days ago. Creed 2 looks fantastic; the first Creed was a great, GREAT movie thanks in part to the veteran presense of Stallone. Old Stallone was also great in Rocky Balboa. He's just great, period. If you disagree with me then see above and then gggggggggggggggggeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetttttttttttttttt oooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuttttttttttttttttttttttt!

I have to go to the bank, to Lowe's, and then to Deno's house this morning. My side-mission this week is to finish up some window and door trim and do a little sheetrock for him at the house he just bought. He hasn't moved in yet so he's hoping to get it all done this week before he moves in. On Monday I spent 1.5 hours there installed the two pieces of sheetrock over old window holes and applying the first coat of mud. There is no heat so the mud will take longer to dry, but that first coat should be dry by now. I hope! I really shouldn't be taking on anything above and beyond our building that still needs tons of work, but he is a friend and I want to help him. Having him call someone from the phone book would suck for him in terms of price and potentially quality so I can just do it for him. His new house is here in Brewer only 2.5 miles away so at least there is minimal commute time. If he lived any further away I would not have been able to help him.



Wednesday, 10-03-18: One week until vacation. Sports and work.
The Red Sox finished their 2018 regular season on Sunday afternoon with a win against the rival Yankees, and even better the Patriots crushed Miami on Sunday so it was a good sports day for New England. The Pats are only 2-2 so far this season so hopefully they can pump out a lot more wins over the last 3/4 of their NFL season.

The Red Sox had a historic baseball season, and hopefully they can win the World Series. Their first playoff game will be Friday against the winner of either the Yankees vs A's game tonight.

Here are the final AL standings:

A final record of 108-54 = OMG WOW. Best in all of baseball, and most wins of any Red Sox team in the history of the team. Mookie Betts and JD Martinez were the top hitters. The Yankees had a damn good season as well with 100 wins, but thankfully the Red Sox were better. The Orioles were 47-115 AHAHAHAHAHAHAA HORRIBLE. That difference in the standings between first and last place must be some kind of record, but I don't care enough to look it up.

We have just over a week before we leave for a road-trip vacation. On Thursday morning next week Kat and I will load up the GMC Acadia (her vehicle) and head south for 9.5 or 10 hours to Maryland. Once in MD we'll pick up a small 20-foot travel camper that we rented through a *hopefully* reputable website called Outdoorsy.com. We'll spend the night near the DC area, and then Friday we'll poke our way down the Appalachains through Virginia and see some sights along the way before camping out somewhere near the Roanoake area. On Saturday we'll drive down to north Georgia and spend that night there, and on Sunday we'll go to a zoo there and do an otter encounter. Kat loves otters.

After the otter experience we will work our way back north to the Washington DC area where we will see some DC attractions and then on Tuesday night the 16th we'll go to WWE Smackdown 1000th episode. We'll spend Wed/Thurs heading back towards home. We already have our zoo and Smackdown tickets, the camper is paid for, so the only other expenses still to come will be a few campground fees, food, and fuel. Gas is around $2.80 a gallon now, but I see on the news that oil prices are rising so I bet gas will be a bit more costly next week. What a bunch of crap! We're driving around 2600 miles total and with a travel trailer for 1400 of those miles even a small change in gas prices will affect our bottom line substantially. I bet gas will cost $500-$600 in total.

I figure our entire trip will cost around $3000 including fuel, vehicle wear, camper rental event tickets, camping fees, food, etc. Kat and I worked hard this summer working for Phil and Danielle doing their house shingles so we've had the money saved for the trip since then. Neither her nor I have ever rented a travel trailer/camper before so it will be a new and hopefully very fun experience for us. The camper is pretty small, but it does have a queen bed, a TV, sink, mini fridge, small bathroom, and other amenities.

^Hopefully is not a bean can because we will be sleeping in it for several days.

Everything is all wet outside right now because rain only recently ended. We had some rain Friday, some rain Monday, and much more rain yesterday so I wasn't able to do any exterior work on our new building since last Thursday. What a bunch of crap! We did have some dry weather both Friday and Monday afternoons for a bit, but it was damp and raw with a rain threat so I just set up my work area on the inside and did ceilings and sheetrock work in the upstairs apartment. Yesterday was a very wet 49 degrees so it was almost too cold to even mud and tape. I worked inside with my sweatshirt on all day, but I was not uncomfortably cold. There is a working furnace there and some oil in the tank (still waiting for the gas company to install the line) so I should get the heat going at some point. Today and tomorrow look decent with temps in the 60s so hopefully I can get back outside and finish some more siding and the back deck. If I don't have at least the back deck and all the siding 100% done before we leave next week that will be epic fail and a bunch of crap all rolled up into one.

The rainy weather didn't really spoil my plans because I did make good progress on the upstairs apartment inside. I have the kitchen ceiling almost done, I started one of the bedroom ceilings, and I have well over 50% of my sheetrock work done up there. I still think I can have most of the exterior work and the upstairs apartment done by mid-November. Maybe? Hopefully!

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