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

"Man it seems like every day on the news they're talking about a heat wave somewhere lately." -Me
"It's because of Trump." -Kat
"How so?" -Me
"It's because we're in hell." -Kat


Sunday, 9-30-18: Officially done at JH.
I decided a few months ago that I was most likely not going to return to Jackson Hewitt for a 5th consecutive year as a tax preparer, and I emailed the new manager (whom I have never even met) a couple weeks ago letting him know that I will not be returning. Yesterday I got something in the mail from Fidelity Investments, and it was a letter saying I have $360 in a JH retirement account that needs to get cashed out. OMG. I never signed up for a 401k plan so bonus for me. I guess since that $360 is so far below the minimum $5000 needed to keep an account going with them I should expect a check in the mail soon. That must mean JH officially terminated my ass in their system, and after yesterday there likely is no turning back.

Yesterday morning I finished my IRS e-file, ERO account setup. I still need to get fingerprints and mail them in before my application can officially be processed, and their website says allow up to 45 days so I guess I won't know for sure if I am good-to-go until sometime in November. I need to pass criminal background, credit, and whatever other checks the IRS deems necessary before I get approved.

Hahaha very interesting fact. "Before becoming lead singer for Berlin Terry Nunn auditioned for the role of Princess Leia in Star Wars." How cool is that? 80s channel 1928 is great! I only know two Berlin songs of course the one that is playing from the Top Gun soundtrack Take my Breath Away and Like Flame. Like Flame is an awesome song and if you disagree then I hate you. I probably hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more.

Man I have problems with my right hand. It keeps going numb. A lot. It (and Groot) is the reason revielle was 0542 this morning. I'm actually having trouble writing this bootleg update that only two people will ever read. What a bunch of crap! It gets that tingly feeling like when you sleep on a body part wrong and it "goes to sleep" so to speak. It has woken me up often at nights lately, and I need to start taking this shit a lot more seriously. Maybe in hindsight playing rball yesterday was not the best idea because that definitely aggrivates things. I don't know what is wrong, but my guess is a pinched nerve from some muscle or tendon swelling somewhere from my shoulder down to my forearm. Over the past several years when I work too much doing carpentry/shovelling/etc I notice it pops up. I think I'll go take a couple Aleve now...

1989 Cher If I could Turn Back Time. We didn't get MTV or cable until maybe 1992, but I remember this music video anyway. She was dressed kinda like a whore on a battleship. The same one Steven Segal was on in Under Seige? (USS Missouri?) Last night when my bootleg hand was not numb and keeping me awake I dreamed about aircraft carriers. I was stationed on one again, but it was a newer style with no bridge so there was no way to see the flight deck. Then a giant crane lifted two of them up out of the water at the same time like they were tiny little toys. What a bunch of crap! We did watch the movie Downsizing last night so maybe that was on my mind a bit. We liked the movie by the way; I'd give it a 7.5 on a scale of 1-10.

^Even though she is dressed like a hooker (NOT A PROBLEM) she did rock the hell out of this song.

Wow I got off-topic by a lot. A lot. I believe there is no turning back now from the JH job because I am officially going to compete with them. Getting my own ERO from the IRS means I can e-file my own taxes, and I am sure someone somewhere at JH corporate will see that I intend to open my own tax business. I really don't want to compete with one of the biggest tax franchises in the nation; I won't be offering refund advances and most likely no ARs like they do (AR = fees for tax prep come out of the refund.) I plan to just start out small doing mostly friends, family, and acquaintance taxes. I will put out a sign and maybe a little bit of advertising. All those details are still hazy to me because my future tax office looks kinda like this right now:

^From a few weeks ago. That's actually the bathroom, but my tax office nearby looks about the same. I won't even install the sheetrock in any of that downstairs area until possibly November because I have a lot of exterior work and upstairs interior work to finish first.

Hopefully this coming week I can finish the siding 100% on the south and west sides, I can finish the back deck, and I can start siding on the north and/or front sides. The front needs two new bay windows and two new doors still. I also have to install entry steps and a new overhang. Not sure I will get to that this week that will all depend on the weather. On rainy days I'll work inside in the upstairs apartment. My target for finishing the exterior is later in October and November 15th for finishing the upstairs apartment. Then I'd have 1.5 months to get most of the downstairs all done. Tomorrow is October already. Wow!



Friday, 9-28-18: Dog seizure = OMG WTF?!
I had it all planned out because I plan shit like a boss. Work all morning, screw off for most of the afternoon, take care of a few business things, play racquetball, eat supper, drink some booze, go to Jester's. Par for the course for many a Friday these days. Unfortulately we had a severe scare just after 1600 when my Sweet Pea called me in a near panic; Tiger Lily was having a seizure in the dining-room/kitchen area. OMG.

^Tiger Lily on the right looking up at the squirrel back on July 23. Right now she is sleeping, and she seems healthy. I thank the gods who do not really exist for that.

Thankfully when Kat called I was just at our new building stowing a few things and I had just finished using the compressor to put some air into my truck tires. I was only 2/10 of a mile away, and I got home fast. When I got home Tiger Lily was no longer having her seizure, but she was on the floor in a blanket and she looked wasted like DOc-J and 8-Ball from Full Metal Jacket. My awesome wife is wiry-strong so she picked up the 62-pound dog like she was a bag of feathers, and it was off to the vet. Thankfully (to the gods who do not really exist) Tiger Lily came out of her seizure and seemed a little better by the time we got to the vet. We had blodwork done and that all came back as normal. Phew! So all I wana know is why? Why did an otherwise healthy 2.5-year old female Golden Retriever have a massive seizure? Cannot be explained. Did she eat something weird in the back yard? Is she just prone to such events? We will watch her like a hawk, and that is why I am not at the bar right now.

Since the vet visit a few hours ago Tiger Lily seems okay. She has played with Groot and Copper, she ate all her food, and she tagged along to the gym and then to the new building with me and the other dogs like a champ earlier tonight. I figured I might as well be productive with my precious... precious time tonight so I lifted some weights (had to cancel Rball but no worries there) and installed some ceiling tiles at the new building with all three dogs in tow. Copper and Tiger Lily have not been to the new building with me for any length of time, but they did just fine there with Groot and I. I could have finished the entire kitchen ceiling, but I stopped near the end because I need to determine where the range exhaust fan will vent. If I decide to vent it up through the ceiling then finishing the tiles now = dumb.

I "only" worked a total of 33 hours at our new property this week, but I was exceptionally efficient with my time there and I got a lot done. I'll save the photos for next time. I won't work there this weekend, but I will borrow/rent Gavin's mower so I can take care of some lawns including our own lawn. G wont accept any money from me so I will just buy him booze for his generosity. Both of our mowers are in the shop waiting in the queue for repairs. What a bunch of crap that is!



Friday, 9-28-18: Stupid lawn mowers. Seriously?!
All I wanna know is why? Why does the brand new lawn mower that I ordered from amazon.com not start? Why did my other mower have to die when there are only a few lawns left to mow before the growing season ends? My other mower is only about 3-4 years old so it should not have died gods damn it. (I do use it often for half a year, though.)

It pisses me off that I had to order a lawn mower off the Interweb. Home Depot only had a cheapo mower, a used one that looked like a customer return and that was overpriced, and then expensive high-end ones for a few hundred bucks. Lowe's didn't have jack shit, and neither did Bradstreet here in Brewer. All these local places seem to have switched to snow blower season. What a bunch of crap!

So I ordered this mower:

I would have ordered a different one that had a better group of customer reviews, but it would not have shipped for a couple weeks so I decided to get that one since I knew it would come quickly. I ordered it last Thurs/Friday, and it arrived Tuesday. Not bad! Unfortunately, that is the only good thing about the mower. I tried to start it Tuesday PM, but I only tried for about 30 seconds because it was raining. Wednesday was a fairly wet day so finally yesterday PM I tried to get the thing going so I could mow our lawn. I tried, I tried, and I tried some more to no avail. The bootleg thing just would not start. What a bunch of crap!

I have new gas and oil in the mower so I didn't think fuel was my issue. Finally after a bunch of fails I pulled the filter, and I realized it was soaked with gas. It seems when you prime the thing the gas leaks into the filter area instead of going into the carbeurator. I don't even know how to spell that word, and I really don't even know where gas goes when you push the primer. I could build a house from the ground up, but mechanically I am a failure. Mechanically this bootleg mower is a failure, too. I am going to give the fuckin' thing a one star rating right now.

So today I have to go to Jim's Small Engine shop in Orrington and hope for the best. I'll bring both mowers and see if I can get at least one of them going for a fair price. If not then I guess I'm borrowing Gavin's mower for my final rounds of mowing. He already said I could use it, but I don't want to put any wear on his stuff if I can help it. This mower-fail thing has been a couple weeks so now not only do I have our own lawn to mow but I also have to do some mowing at a few other properties. Not full mows every nook and cranny like I have to do in the spring/early summer, but enough to keep me pushing for an hour or two.




Wednesday, 9-26-18: A very productive evening.
I got all kinds of things done tonight because Kat is at a hair appointment, and those things tend to take forever. Speaking of hair, I cut mine down to the usual 1/4" buzz just a little while ago. Took 15 minutes or so, maybe 20 including cleaning up the little hair pieces that spread about. I cut my hair over the trash can so most of it disappears, but there are always the little rogue hairs that make me have to clean up. Still beats going to a barber for $12 or $15 or $20 or whatever. Paying for a buzz-cut would be a bunch of crap! Plus for the baber you have to actually commute to the place and then wait for your turn so it takes a lot longer than 20 minutes.

When Sweet Pea left at 1715 for her appointment I was right out the door behind her with Groot; we headed over to the gym for a half-hour of weightlifting before I took Groot with me right over to our property so I could install kitchen ceiling tiles. Groot did pretty good with me tonight, but this morning when I had her for a while she whined and paced a lot. She almost escaped, too. Thankfully I grabbed her before she could get too far. I worked for about 1.75 hours there tonight, and I got a lot done because I had taken care of all my prep earlier in the day so all I had to do was fly through two boxes of tiles for that kitchen ceiling. Once the prep is done those tiles do install fairly quickly.

Earlier today I also worked on the exterior for a couple hours. The weather was very humid and damp (although no rain a constant threat of precip) so I spent most of my time on the upstairs apartment inside. Here is what the back deck and siding look like now:

^I couldn't quite finish the siding on the south section yesterday. What a bunch of crap! Oh well, I'll get it soon enough. I also have to do some gutter replacement and another coat of white trim on the rear (deck) top area and install most of the siding before I build the rest of the stairs from the lower platform to the deck. I could do the steps before the siding, but then I think it would be awkward getting the ladder up to the top above the steps so I'll leave them off for now for ease of access for siding install.

I hoped to have both the deck and both sides in the photo done by the end of this week, but that will not be happening unless I work all day Saturday, which I do NOT want to do. I never get done exactly what I set out to accomplish because everything takes a while to do. Oh well, as long as the end result looks nice and as long as I am safe on my ladder then what I get done is third place on the priority list. (If my siding is still not done by November then I might start to worry more because it will be getting COLD.)

Hopefully in the next two days I can get the gutter and trim paint done and the back siding done up to about the midway point. Anything above and beyond that will be a bonus because I also have to do some mowing. I finally got a mower. Oh Jesus hell ya! I ordered one from Amazon.com last week since Lowe's and Home Depot were picked pretty clean. I also called a local place, but their cheapest mower is $300. What a bunch of crap! All I want is a mid-grade push mower with no extra stupid shit. Unfortunately by the time I got the mower out of the box and fueled up it started to rain pretty hard so I could not mow yesterday. What a bunch of crap!

After my next round of mowning tomorrow and Friday I think my mowing season will be pretty much spent. I'll have to do some patchy mowing one more time next month I think, but we had a frost yesterday and the lawns have not been growing much this month anyway. Bye bye garden, bye bye summer, and soon bye bye mowing. Sucks I had to buy a new mower when the season is so close to being finished, but hey at least I'll have a new one to start next year. I was going to buy a new one next year anyway.

I actually took some Aleve just a bit ago. I have been having some tennis elbow and/or a pinched nerve again in my right arm, and that is a bunch of crap. Deno wanted to play rball today, but I passed up playing because I need to NOT overdo it with my arm. Bad enough I have to do all this hammering, drilling, digging, scraping, etc at the building. Last night I woke up in the night and my right arm was all numb and it sucked. A lot. Hopefully that does NOT happen tonight or else I will have to get my hacksaw and cut the damn thing off and learn to function as a lefty. Hehehehe.



Saturday, 9-22-18: My new schedule for our building.
I just rewrote a tentative schedule of completion for our new building, and I pushed everything back because my original plan was epic fail. I am behind a bit on where I want to be with the place, but not severely so. My original timeline had the upstirs apartment finished and ready for Dillon, Debbie, and Travis in about one week, the end of this month. In hindsight that plan was a bunch of crap! Thankfully by later in August I realized that and now I hope to have that apartment ready around the end of October/early November.

^The kitchen is still far from complete, but at least I installed most of the cabinets last night. The other rooms are also incomplete; they all need at least a little sheetrock work, ceilings, paint, window trim, and floors.

Thankfully Debbie, Dillon, and Travis are all set living with us in the new addition for the time being. It is a little crowded for three of them up in those two newer rooms here at the house, but I think waiting a few more weeks helps them also because they can keep saving money for the rent and security deposit. Obviously I am going to give them a good deal on the rent at that place, and I think it will be a perfect fit for them. The apartment will be like new, and since there are no downstairs neighbors living there it is kinda like they have their own house. They'll even have their own parking for just them in the back. Should be awesome. I hope!

If I had focused almost exclusively on the interior this month then I could have had the apartment mostly ready to go in a week. However, having them move in with no deck and with all the siding still needing to be installed seemed like a bad idea. I don't want them living there and being kept awake while I hammer all over the sides of the place. Dillon works very early so he naps in the day, and when he is living there he will need some quiet time. I can mud/sand/paint downstairs when they live there without making too much noise, but the siding install requires lots of hammering. Plus the weather will get colder with each passing week so doing the exterior this month when the weather is generally great makes more sense for me. I've been able to work outside almost every day because we haven't had much rain. Oh Jesus hell ya to that!

I can definitely mark the changing of the seasons with the weather this week. Monday I went for a jog when it was in the low 80s, and yesterday I went for a jog when it was only in the 50s outside. HUGE difference. I was sweating a lot working Mon and Tues, but the last three work days this week I've been wearing jeans and on small occasions early in the day even a sweatshirt before I warm up. Yesterday afternoon was raw-feeling. What a bunch of crap!

So I just revised my timeline on the place for what is probably the 10th time, and hopefully this time I can stick with it a bit more. Here is the beginning timeline from the week ending August 11th through last week:

^I put some dates off to the right when I actually started those things, and even though I started a lot of that stuff I didn't finish it yet. What a bunch of crap! Here is the plan for the next few weeks:

^As you can see I finished neither the S and W siding nor the deck and stairs. Oh well, hopefully next week the weather is decent enough for me to get those sides and the deck finished.

I still have a lot of exterior work left to do, but I do hope by the time we leave on the 11th for a week-long road trip vacation that most of my exterior work is done. I know there will be a rainy day or two so I can also do a little more on the inside on wet days. I figure I'll have a little more left on the outside for later next month (driveway gravel for out back, cleanup, etc) Then I can really drill down on the upstairs apartment at the end of next month and if needed into early November before I move to the downstairs office area to start all that sheetrock work. Doing the ceilings downstairs will SUCK since I need double 5/8" sheetrock for fire protection. I bought 12-foot sheetrock for those ceilings and I also bought a lift so hopefully it goes pretty well with the lift and one helper. Walls will be 1/2" and easy as compared to doing all those ceilings. most of my framing is already done downstairs so Ben and John could rough-in all my wiring there. Ben is in California for a job now so I'm lucky I had him around for the past few weeks to do the majority of my wiring.



Friday, 9-21-18: Peach Cobbler and kitchen cabinets.
It is almost Jester's O'clock, but first I feel like updating this bootleg site that no one ever reads. After I helped Kat set up for her karaoke show at Jester's I brought Groot over to the building with me to install kitchen cabinets for about 1.25 hours tonight. I think Groot was wondering wtf, but she did just fine with me. Earlier in the day I cleaned up the kitchen area so she could have a place to hang out in case I did go. It was either that or the gym, but I jogged earlier so good enough. I am glad I worked on those cabinets because I made damn good progress in those 75-ish minutes. Am I a weirdo for working at 2100/2200 when I should be relaxing and playing video games and/or watching the Red Sox? Me thinks where's my psychologist?

I feel like I got a lot done at that property this week, and that is awesome because I know not every week works out that way. In fact, I "earned" the right to drink and to take the weekend off. I have not taken a weekend off from work in a while, or so it seems. Usually I work on a Saturday. Hopefully I can sleep in a bit tomorrow, maybe until 0800? Revielle is usually 0530-0600, but we won't bivouac tonight until 0200 so there are still a few hours left in our night before we crash out.

I've done a few different projects at our building this week, but I've spent most of the week outside building a deck and installing siding. Yesterday I installed siding all day, and here is what the south-facing side looks like right now:

^So far so good! The top 1/3 will go slower because of my trips up and down the ladder; I expect to finish that side at some point next week. Maybe Monday? Yesterday was a good day to do siding because it was not windy. However, today was windy and tonight there are gale-force winds gusting up to a forecasted 40MPH. Since there was so much wind in the forecast today I spent my day in the back working on the deck stairs and related decking. This photo was from yesterday before I started the stairs:

^The deck needed a lot more bracking/bolts so I also did that today. Once it started raining in the afternoon I went inside and prepped the kitchen. My plan is to NOT work on the place at all this weekend. I might do a few things around the house tomorrow because this week Kat and I talked about my epic failers. I have a lot of projects that are mostly but not totally done including several here at our house. I need to do better at finishing projects, but instead I keep about 10 things going and nothing truly ever gets 100% done. What a bunch of crap! For example, there is still some trim left to install in the living room here at our house from when I did the new floor last Nov/Dec. Not cool of me at all. The fail is truly epic.

My goal for next week at the property in the photo above is to get the south side and the back side 100% finished. The south side will take a half a day to finish (maybe 3/4 of a day, 5-6 hours) but the back will take a few more days because I have to repair/replace gutters, scrape and paint that green trim, install all the siding, and finish the deck stairs and deck balusters. If I can get those two sides in the photo above all done by the end of the month then that would be awesome. Then I can do the north and front sides in the first week or two of October. Maybe? Hopefully!



Wednesday, 9-19-18: The Predator and appliances come today.
On Sunday afternoon my Sweet Pea and I watched The Predator in the comfy theater that now has reclining seats over by the mall. Neither one of us read any reviews about the new movie before we went to see it because we didn't want our opinions swayed one way or the other, and in hindsight that was a great decision because 411maina gave the movie a 1/10 rating. OMG. We thought the first part of the movie was pretty good, but then things fell apart hard for the final act. Here is an exerpt from that 411mania review:

"The biggest offense of The Predator is that Black and Dekker have basically betrayed the spirit of the franchise. Maybe they wanted this to be Predator meets Monster Squad. Instead, it comes off more like, “How do we make Predator accessible to the MCU crowd? How can we make Predator compete with an audience raised on Marvel superhero films and Deadpool?” Basically, The Predator is probably appealing if you are a 12-15 year-old-male who just wants copious amounts of blood, violence and gore and doesn’t really care about strong plot, characters, dialogue, suspension, tension or atmosphere.

This doesn’t become clearer than with the movie’s ending that is tantamount to hot garbage and the biggest slap in the face to one of the greatest cinematic creations designed by James Cameron and the late, great Stan Winston. Alien vs. Predator was a mediocre movie, but it does not instill or inspire as much rage as the ending does for this movie."

We actually thought the jokes in the movie were pretty funny, and The Loonies were an entertaining group. However, it is impossible to disagree with his thoughts on the ending of the movie. The final scene was a total bunch of crap and one of the most nonsensical things, ever. Plus there were many pacing issues and spots in the movie were it had clearly been edited all to hell. Overall we thought it was not that great, a 5/10 rating. Not as good as the other Predator movies, but a little better than AvP: Requiem.

When we got home from the mediocre movie we flipped on the TV to the Patriots-Jaguars game, and unfortunately early in the 3rd quarter the Jags had a huge lead that they held onto. The Pats didn't look very good in that loss, but thankfully they won their season opener last week for a 1-1 record on the season.

Lowe's will be delivering the brand new fridge and oven to the building today; I bought them about three weeks ago during Labor Day sales. I am in no way ready for either the fridge or the stove since I have focused so much of my efforts on the exterior of the building lately, but no worries I can just toss them into one of the two bedrooms until the kitchen is done. I might actully do some interior work today because there is drizzle now and it is a cool 52 degrees. We might only see 60 today for a high temp, a huge drop from the 81 that we hit yesterday. Seems the summer-like weather is all used up now because I see a lot of 60s in the extended forecast.

Yesterday I had the three pine stumps ground down while I worked on the back deck. Bye bye $270 for that stump grinding so now I am closing in on $34k spent out of the $50k that was budgeted for the remodel. (Including the $10+ spent at Home Depot and Lowe's with special 12 and 24-month financing deals.) I got the decking boards down as well as some of the railings started. Oh Jesus, hell ya! If things dry out a bit then I will start the deck stairs today. The steps will be quite time-consuming as compared to the deck itself because I need about 18 steps in an L-shaped configuration. I definitely won't finish the steps today, and I might not finish them this week, but as long as I am making good forward progress then I'll be satisfied. When I am not working on the deck I'll install some more siding, and when it is cool and/or wet outside then I'll keep plugging away on the upstairs kitchen. I started that kitchen ceiling at the beginning of this month and once the ceiling is at least halfway done I should be able to install all the cabinets.

My goal for the remainder of this month is to have all the siding installed on both the south-facing and west-facing (back side with the deck) sections of the building. I already have a good start on the south-facing siding, but before I can start the rear siding I need to at least start the deck steps and repair/paint the green trim along the top. I suspect I will also need new gutters on that back side, too. Finally, I have two windows to remove and to board over on that back side. Those windows are now obsolete since I installed larger windows in other areas. I don't think removing those windows will take very long, maybe I can even do that today, but the steps and trim paint-repair will take several hours at least.

All I wanna know is why? Why is it such a slow news day that they have to keep talking about Bert and Ernie from Sesame Street? Apparently the dude who has written their characters for the past 15 says he thought of them as gay when he wrote for them. However, the Sesame Street show itself said they are just puppets who are supposed to be portrayed as nothing more than best friends. OMG SERIOUSLY?! JUST LET PUPPETS BE PUPPETS THE 4-YEAR OLDS WHO WATCH CHILDREN'S PROGRAMMING DO NOT NEED TO KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT SEXUAL ORIENTATION. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

This society of ours is soft and pathetic. I guess at the rate we are progressing regressing we only have a few more generations left at best before we either self-destruct, get annexed by Russia, or go live in spaceships like in Wall-E. Epic fail.


Tuesday, 9-18-18: Almost time to work.
I slept in today, relatively speaking of course. I hauled my loser-ass out of bed at 0607, and it seems most mornings lately revielle has been earlier. However, it was not a solid night of sleep because Groot had to go take a dump and a leak in the middle of the night. She rarely sleeps the entire night through, and the past couple nights she has had the squirts presumably because she chewed up a towel Friday night after I went to Jester's. What a bunch of crap that is!

Overall Groot is doing good. Kat took her to the vet for a checkup and a shot (rabies?) yesterday morning while I made a trip to Home Depot to buy a mower and a bunch of lumber for the deck at our newest building. I attempted to mow our lawn Friday PM, but the mower died and it will not start anymore. What a bunch of crap! Maybe it is something little like a sparkplug, but I dunno because the sparkplug looks okay to me. I also cleaned the filter, there is oil, and the gas is fresh. Not rocket science here so all I wanna know is why? Why does the mower not work anymore? It ran ok for the first few minutes before it shut itself down. Oh well, it is an older mower and I planned to replace it next year anyway. The thing has been used hard over the past few years since I bought it, and I feel like I've already gotten my money's worth from it. I did want to wait until next spring, but oh well.

Home Depot was picked just about clean in the mower section because they would rather sell snow blowers I guess. They only had a few bootleg ones left, and I thought I had a decent one at 25% off as a display. However, after I put it into my cart I saw grass clippings fall out of the bottom and that is when I realized it was used and had been returned. F THAT. If I want to buy a used mower I'll just hop onto Craigslist. I would have bought that one if they went lower on the price, but they did not go lower so I guess I'll buy one at Lowe's today or tomorrow. The lawns aren't growing too much anymore so I am not in a huge rush for it.

I arrived at our building at 0900, after 1.5 hours on the supply-run, and in 4.75 hours of hard work there I was able to turn nothing into something. Check this out:

I framed all that up like a boss. Oh Jesus, hell ya! I still need to reinforce a lot of it with more screws and carraige bolts. I got the ledger, posts, and all the joists in place pretty fast, especially since I did it all by myself and I had to raise those two 6x6x12 beams that were incredibly heavy. Travis was planning to help yesterday, but he got called into work I guess. Oh well, saves me money.

Today I'll start some of the decking boards, and Jim is coming in a while to grind down three stumps (one in the photo behind the deck and two others nearby) so I need to put a wiggle on it and get going. There is a lot of debris back there so I need to get it all out of his way before he arrives. Having the old fridge there yesterday was actually handy because it served as a sort-of work bench. It won't be handy there today when Jim is trying to grind, though.

Hopefully I can finish the deck this week. Maybe I won't get the stairs 100% done, but I hope to at least get them started. I also hope to mostly finish the siding on the south side of the building and maybe start some siding on the deck (west) side. Not much rain forecast so I should be able to work outside most of the week. Yesterday was 80+ and kinda hot, today we're in the 70s, and then we drop down to the 60s for tomorrow through Friday. 60s are good temps to work outside.



Friday, 9-14-18: Closing in on Jester's o'clock.
It is 2155, and I just played with the dogs out back for a while. The weather is nice for this time of year, but now it is cooling off. Still wearing shorts tonight because summer is hanging around, and I am A-okay with that. Highs near 80, lows in the 50s, not bad at all. Soon I will head down to Jester's where Kat has already started her usual karaoke show, but before that I am watching the Red Sox-Mets game and watching the dogs. Groot is still too young to be left unattended at home so I want to stay here a bit more before she has to go into her crate. The Sox are getting crushed tonight, 8-0. What a bunch of crap! Fortunately they started tonight with a 10-game lead over the Yankees for first place and have already won 101 games with still 15 or so games left. Oh Jesus hell ya!

I got hungry and had a little bit of a snack just a while ago. These things are damn good:

^Nature's Valley should send me a truckload since I am givng them free promotion that can be viewed all over the entire world-wide-web and possibly by aliens from outer space. Hehehe. However, only about two people will ever see this post so I guess to them that is worth less than a penny. Epic fail.

Speaking of aliens from outer space, a new Predator movie just came out today, and hopefully we can go see it this coming week. Possibly Sunday? Online reviews are up, but I hesitate to read any of them because I don't want spoilers or any expectations. In all honestly the preview looks ok but not spectacular. No Predator can ever top the 1987 one with Schwarzenegger, but some of the other ones are still pretty good. Predator 2 with Danny Glover and Predators were decent movies.

The original Predator movie is one of the best movies of all-time, definitely in my top 25 and possibly in my top 10. It is too much work to make a top ten list, but some obvious top choices for me would be The Goonies, Neverending Story, Return of the Jedi, Spaceballs, and possibly Shrek. Most of my all-time favorite movies (as well as songs!) are from the 80s because the 80s were fucking awesome. If you don't think the 80s were awesome then I hate you. I might hate you anyway, but I'll hate you a little more.



Friday, 9-14-18: Siding, footings, and my parents.
Yesterday morning I installed some siding on our new building, and before that I poured the two footings for the new deck out back. I think I'll work on the deck on Monday when Travis can help me start the posts and frame, and tomorrow I will do a dump-run or two and install a little more siding. I don't plan to work on the place today because this is supposed to be one of my two "days off." Today I'll mow our yard, do some house-cleaning, run a couple errands, and maybe chop up some wood. I have a sizeable wood pile here now from the maple that was cut at our new building at the end of last month.

^I have to get rid of all that trash and tree debris. What a bunch of crap! The deck footing in the foreground will be buried more when we move some dirt over to there from what will be the driveway. We'll have a few yards of earth to reappropriate, and where those footings and propane tank currently sit should be a great place for most if not all of it. I don't expect to do the driveway until next month. I might hire out the driveway to my ground-work-guy, but I probably will just try to do it myself for budget constraints.

^A very sun-washed photo. The siding is a nice-looking blue that Kat wisely picked out, and unfortunately the front is still asbestos because F paying $1860 to have that all stripped down and removed. I'll just put the vinyl right over it and hide it. No problems only solutions! I still have one more window to replace on that side, and I have to paint the trim along the roof-line. A little bit of that trim was rotten until I cut that area out. I'll replace that, caulk it all, and hopefully it stands the test of time for a while more to come. I had some other rot on that side wall, but I took care of that and installed new felt as well.

The piano isn't stuck in the stairwell anymore at the building. My electrician and two of his boys came over Wednesday with a come-along and some rugged straps, and they winched it down slowly but surely. Unfortunately the piano took on some damage, but it is in one piece and it does work still. Damaged piano = what a bunch of crap! Kat is not happy with me about that, but I did try to take care of the thing. It was just too damn heavy, and I don't have an eye for the delicate details needed for something like that. Epic failer me for that one. I do feel badly about it. However, I also do hate that piano and I wish it would just vanish forever. That piano can eat the peanuts out of my sssssssssshhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiiiiiitttttttttttttttttttt.

I only worked on our building for about 3 hours yesterday because I started the day with a run to Lowe's for concrete and rebar, and Mom and Dad came up for a noontime tour of the place and for a lunch at City Side. After lunch I played racquetball (lost all 4 games to Deno what a bunch of crap!) and had some mowing to do. Mom and Dad are really walking the line on officially being old (I mean OLD), and they are kinda funny to watch. They're quickly becoming that old couple who have been together far too long, who no-doubt still love each other, but who tend to go back-ad-forth over the little things constantly. I told Mom I was going to have a window from my tax office that views out into Kat's studio area, and she kept going on and on about how dumb that was and it made no sense, etc.


Mom was going on about the window and Dad was as cool as the other side of the pillow, he was just chilling out and saying how it is no big deal. Then Mom wanted to go look at the upstairs, but Dad's hip was bothering him and he didn't want to walk up the stairs. If that were Kat and I then I would have said no worries we'll skip looking at the apartment above. However, Mom really wanted to see it so she had no problem just ditching her spouse of 43-plus years in the downstairs while I took her on a quick tour. Kat and I have only been married a small fraction of time as compared to my parents, but the way they treat each other sometimes seems perplexing, at least from the outside looking in.



Tuesday, 9-11-18: Epic piano failer.
It's a good thing that I am a scrappy 147 pounds because I have a piano hopelessly wedged in my stairwell at the new building, and there is just barely enough room for me to squeeze my narrow ass by the thing so I can still go up and down the stairs. It is by no means an easy fit, though.

The failure that was us trying to move that piano yesterday was epic. I tried to have it all planned out and set up for success to include a sturdy plywood ramp, a rope rated for about 6000 lbs that Ben loaned to me, and double 2x4 supports above for the rope. We planned to wrap the rope around the 2x4 above and to slowly lessen the rope and ease the piano down the ramp, but the one huge problem that I did not account for was the fact that the piano would not round the bend atop the stairwell. It was impossible. What a bunch of crap! So Gavin and Travis were able to tip the piano onto its side, and in that manner we got the thing through the door and into the stairwell. After that I really failed at decision-making.

This piano is not huge, but holy Jesus it is heavy. I would guess between 500-800 pounds, but it's never going onto a scale so I'll never know for sure. Once the piano was in the stairwell and on its side I should have seen that it would be too tall to go down the plywood ramp that way, but I did not see that so I decided to have the guys start lowering it on its side. After we struggled with it to get it started on the ramp things looked good when it started moving along. Unfortunately, the success was short-lived:

It is too tall to go all the way down like that, and now it is wedged there. WHAT A BUNCH OF CRAP!

We tried to pull it back from its side, but it is just too heavy and we could not even move it a millimeter. Gods damn it! I was about to get my sawzall and chainsaw and start cutting it out, but Gavin suggested I go to Harbor Freight Tools and buy a come-along winch. If I rig up a winch atop the stairwell I can use the attached rope to pull the piano back onto its side, and then we *should* be able to slide it down the ramp to the first floor. Maybe? Hopefully!

That fuckin' piano can kiss my hairy ass. It can eat the peanuts out of my ssssssssssssshhhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiiiiiitttttttttttttttt. I hate the thing! I wish it was not left behind for us because I knew moving it would suck serious ass. At first I was planning to just call a moving company, but after seeing the above I am glad I did not do that because it would have been epic costly and it would have probably also ended in some form of failure. The piano has already taken on some damage and I'm not really sure I can even get that thing out of there in one piece anymore. Kat really wants to keep it so I'm trying for her sake. If she didn't want it I would for sure have just pushed it out of the new door and onto the ground below. After the piano fiasco that is what I decided to do with the ancient kitchen stove and the old fridge. Out the door they went, and the smash on the ground was fun times.

Kat had suggested we try to save that oven and sell it as an antique, but not anymore. It is ruined, but it probably didn't even work before then. Obviously we didn't have that ladder there when we heaved both of those out that back door. That ladder is the only easy way to the top floor now that my stairwell is blocked. What a bunch of crap!

Travis was a big help yesterday; not only did he give a hand moving the heavy crap out of the top floor but he also helped with a sheetrock and deck-lumber supply run, some cleanup, and digging the two footing holes for the new deck that will soon be going where the ladder, those two appliances, and that tree stump are all located in the photo above. I'll do a 10x10 deck with stairs leading to the ground below, and I will have some gravel/reclaim asphault brought in this fall for parking in that back yard.

Home Depot brought a truckload of supplies to me yesterday afternoon, and we got all of them into the garage so bonus there as far as dry and secure storage. I still have a lot of suppies to come, but the siding was on that first truck so finally, FINALLY I have my vinyl siding and can start installing that. I ordered that siding back on August 16th so it took a long time. I likely won't start the siding today because it is pouring rain right now and is expected to rain for most of the day, but tomorrow through early next week looks to be a great stretch of weather so I can get a good start on it later this week. In a perfect scenario I'd have all the siding done, the deck done, the white trim paint finished, and every single new window and door installed throughout by the end of this month. However, I do think at least some of that work will take me into October. I still need to install two regular windows, order and install the two front display windows, and replace both first-floor entry doors before I can even do the siding on a couple parts of the building.

I guess today I'll do a lot of interior work and maybe go get a winch for that piano. My sparkys were planning to come do some wiring for me today, but I told Ben if he does come he can forget doing anything on the second floor since he won't fit around that piano. He could use the ladder on the back side to get up and down, but it will be all wet so that is a bad plan. Maybe I can get him and John started on the first floor if they do come...



Sunday, 9-09-18: The heat is on.
Revielle was 0626 (thanks Groot), and it was 38 degrees outside and 65 degrees in the living room. That temp is tolerable and will seem balmy in mid-winter, but after one of the warmest summers on record it feels like a giant bunch of crap. We'll get to an outside temp of the mid-60s today and tomorrow, and it looks like 30s will happen again tonight for low temps. With fall-like weather comes the itch to go deer hunting so I plan to go scout around in the local woods and see what the deer sign looks like at some of my favorite hunting nooks. Fall is in the air for sure, and I just put the heat on for the first time this season. I also turned on the furnaces for the bootleg rentals yesterday morning.

^From Gavin's trail camera in 2012, the monster buck whom we nicknamed Krueger. I hope his descendents are running around in there this year. I'll take any deer, but a nice big buck would surely be a sweet bonus. Last year I did get a 4-pointer from my ground blind at Supertree.

Copper and Tiget Lily can come with me and get some much-needed exercise in the woods this morning, but I will leave Groot home. Yesterday they didn't get any exercise because Kat, Groot, and I were in Bar Harbor for most of the day at a wedding. Bringing a puppy to a wedding when you are the DJ might seem unprofessional in almost every setting, but the wedding was at a campground, we met with the brides (same-sex marriage) last week, and Groot ended up being a perfect fit there. The brides and their friends/family were all fantastic, they gave Kat huge props and a big tip in a thank-you card, and overall it was a huge success. Unfortunately it was cold once evening hit. What a bunch of crap! Thankfully no rain at all, especially since it was an outdoor ceremony and reception. It was a very long day and we didn't bivouac until midnight last night so I think I am still sleep-deprived. Oh well, it happens.

Speaking of deer hunting, not only did I get a doe tag but I also got a bonus tag for rifle hunting. Oh Jesus hell ya! The doe tag is great, but the bonus tag does not matter very much to me because I can bowhunt up here a lot. Since I have an entire building to remodel I fear I will sacrifice deer hunting time, and that is unacceptable. I don't need to go hunting every day, but come the end of October and into November I really do need to allocate some precious... precious time to get into the woods. Today I'll drag out my bow and hopefully shoot a few arrows at my target out back. I should have started shooting the bow last month, but there is still plenty of time to home my limited skills before I go live into the woods with the thing.

It seems like we spend a lot of money to live life so it is nice to have a little bonus funds come our way every now and again. First was the $360 that Phil paid me for finishing their house Wednesday. Second was the aforementioned sizeable tip that Kat got last night at the end of her gig, and finally yesterday we got a check from the bank for $497 in the mail. Turns out when we paid off the GMC Acadia (from refinance funds last month) there was an overpayment so we got a credit back. Oh Jesus hell ya! Plus all the tenants are paid up including one who was behind and under a written notice to pay or to quit so it is nice having a few extra bucks in the accounts and all the rentals running well. It is especially nice since Kat and I are planning another "Goonie adventure" road trip next month.

Right now our plan is to leave on Thursday October 11th in the GMC Acadia heading south on I-95. We'll keep heading south, all the way to Maryland, and we will rent a camper trailer to be our mobil base-camp for a few days. The GMC can tow 4000 pounds so we won't get anything huge. Our final southern destination is Cleveland, Georgia where we can see some sights and go to a zoo where we can do an otter experience. Kat really wants to swim with otters (not swim more like wade) so she is super-excited for that part of the trip. After a couple days (give or take) in northern Georgia we will head north to DC where we plan to spend a couple more days before we return the camper and head home. While in DC we will see some sights and museums and then attend the Tuesday night the 16th WWE Smackdown! 1000th episode. That should be a great, fun show. I hope! We'll likely get home on Thursday the 18th next month and then I can really get serious about my deer hunting and interior work at our new building.

Since our road-trip is in just over a month I pretty much have 4.5 weeks to work hard on our newest property, and I'd like to mostly finish the exterior. This coming week I'll start the back deck and *hopefully* start the siding. I ordered the siding back on August 16th and as of Thursday it was still not in so that is a bunch of crap. I'll call tomorrow and hopefully have good news about that. I don't need to have it just yet because there is plenty else I can be doing, but I would rather get my supplies on-site so I can get everything going. Wed-Sat this week look to be fantastic weather so I want to do a lot of exterior work on 3 of those 4 days. On the day I don't work later this week we'll have a "date day" and hopefully do something fun with the dogs. Maybe Donnell Pond or the ocean in Searsport. It is important to enjoy what little summer-like weather we do have remaining this year because in seemingly no time at all it will be gone until 2019.

So my plan now is to work on the building and other apartments as needed for 5 days a week and to take 2 days off a week where I don't work on the building at all. It's almost like I'm planning to have a *real* job hehehe. I think as much as possible I'll take Sunday off and one day off during the week. Maybe take weekends off on certain weeks and do my carpentry M-F. Each week will vary depending on other appointments and things we have planned. I know I need to change how I have been working so far this month because other things have pulled me away too much. I don't want to get too far behind on this renovation or else I really won't have time to enjoy deer hunting and that would be a bunch of crap!

I am looking forward to taking today off from any work. I'll poke around in the woods shortly, I'll play racquetball later this morning, and this afternoon is the Patriots season opener against the Houston Texans. Hopefully Kat and I can relax a bit later today and then get a good night's sleep tonight for the first time in a few days and I can wake up tomorrow refreshed and recharged and ready to get a lot of work done on our bootleg disaster of a building. (A disaster now becasuse it is under renovation, but soon will start to look good. Maybe? Hopefully!)


Friday, 9-07-18: Time to work more on our building.
On Wednesday I finished the last small section of cedar shakes on Phil and Danielle's house, and it ended up being a long and hot day of work. Even though it was not a large section it had plenty of 45-degree angles and the last few rows took even longer because I had to keep going up and down the ladder. Plus I was baking in the hot sun. What a bunch of crap!

^Still needs to have the deck installed, but I don't think I will have time to do that for them this year. Phil is more than capable and can do it himself, but he has a kid and a full-time job so he is short on time. If things fall into place then Kat and I will go back down next spring and shingle everything in the photo to the right of the new section. It wraps around the house so it is a lot more work. I wish I could do it this fall, but as-is I am falling slightly behind on our new building and next week I need to step it up and work there more.

I didn't work too many hours at our building this week because I had to finish Phil's, I visited Mom and Pop, and I had to collect some rents and pay some bills for the other properties. The little things eat up my precious... precious time. Katherine's Jeep needs repairs to that will take up some more time, too. I am so friggin' busy these days. I can't even imagine how people who have full-time jobs and kids can find free time for anything. Our "kids" are our dogs, and that is a task in itself that thankfully Kat handles like a boss. Groot is doing well; she is finally falling asleep even though I want her to stay awake since we have to be up late. Tonight is Kat's 5-year anniversary of working at Jester's. How awesome is that?!

^Yesterday morning. It has been extremely dry here lately so the back yard is like a dust bowl. The floors get dirty because it gets brought in from the dogs, but the plus is the fact that I don't have to mow too much anymore. I'll take that trade any day. I don't mind mowing, but screw it I have done enough mowing already this year.

The Red Sox had a 2-0 lead against the Houston Astros in the 7th inning, but the bullpen had epic fail so now the Sox are down 3-2. What a bunch of crap! The Astros have a damn good team this year. The Sox have a great team, too. The Red Sox are 9.5 games ahead of the second-place Yankees so at this point they are almost sure to win the division.

I did some trim painting at our new property today, and I also spent a half-hour sanding the kitchen walls so now that kitchen is about ready for paint, the start of a ceiling, and cabinets. I just want to get those cabinets in so Bruce can do the plumbing, but I don't see that happening this weekend since we have to do a wedding in Bar Harbor tomorrow. That wedding will take all afternoon so I might work 2 hours in the morning... maybe. Probably.

I also had Sunrise Glass measure for two display windows on the front, and I need to get a price next week on replacement windows. I know they won't be cheap because nothing like that is cheap. The windows now look like this:

If you look close you can see a crack in that one. Not only is that surely lead paint on the trim, but it is also surrounded by asbestos siding. What a bunch of crap! Even worse that is a lame single-pane piece of glass with both a large crack and with the top portion caving in. It is entirely a failure in every way. What a bootleg bunch of crap! Oh well what do you expect for something that is 68 years old? New windows and doors on the first-floor front will really make a huge difference.

Groot is sleeping now, and I need to wake her up. The Sox just tied the game 3-3. Oh Jesus, hell ya! Soon I will head on down to Jester's and stay up late and drink some cheap beer. Goonies never day die! The end. Fin.



Tuesday, 9-04-18: More work at Phil's.
Yesterday on Labor Day I had a long day. Revielle was 0500, and I was using my bootleg gym before daybreak. After that I headed down to Oakland to work for Phil and Danielle all morning; I have one smaller section of siding left to replace for them, and I am hoping to have that all done by the end of the day tomorrow. Even though I only worked 1/2 a day there yesterday I did get a lot done including a few rows of new shingles installed. My goal was to strip the old shingles and prep for the new ones so being a little ahead of that pace is a huge plus.

^Should finish that up tomorrow. Maybe? Hopefully! If I can't shingles that piece in a day then I need to go get a job doing something else. Hehehe. The top will take a little longer due to the angles, but it is small. In July I got all this done in one day:

^It took 11 hours to get that section off to the top left done, but I did also install OSB in the garage that day so let's say that was 9 hours of shingling. By that time-calculation I should have no problem getting that small part in the first photo done tomorrow.

Phil has a lot more work to be done at his place, but I have a lot of work to do up here so it seems very unlikely I can do anything else down there for them until next spring. I told him by all means hire a contractor if it needs to be done ASAP, but I get the impression they are willing to wait until next year for us to do the rest of it. I know Phil would love to have me put a deck on that corner there where the ledger boards are, but I really can't spare the precious... precious time this year. If only we lived closer than an hour away, and if only winter wasn't 1/3 of our entire year.

After I worked on those shingles all morning yesterday I drove down to Mom and Pop's (from Phil's) for a visit. We did Mom's birthday, but we kinda half-assed it. I didn't even bring her a gift or a card. What a bunch of crap! I did have a card, but I forgot it. Also I was going to give her a bunch of blueberries, but it was too hot to bring them with me since they are frozen now. Yesterday was HOT and incredibly humid. Again. What a bunch of crap that is! We had to use the A/C last night. It is already 70 degrees now at 0630, but thankfully by the end of the week we get some cooler weather.

Today I'll focus on some work up here including mowing two lawns, making a big purchase at Home Depot (Labor Day sale ends tomorrow), and doing some work at the building. I will probably frame some of the downstairs so my Sparkys have plenty to do this week and/or do a little more sheetrock work upstairs. I think by the end of this week I can have the kitchen cabinets installed. Maybe? Hopefully. I ordered the fridge and range from Lowe's on Saturday, and they were having an awesome sale. Those are scheduled for delivery on the 19th so that gives me a couple weeks to *mostly* finish the kitchen. I could have the appliances delivered before the kitchen is done, no problem at all, but it would be nice to just have them put right into place where they belong. Would make for less clutter around the place. Right now I have cabinets, tools, sheetrock, and scraps all over the place. Looks like a war zone. What a bunch of crap!

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

Click here to go back to the main page.