I am the emotional support animal for three cats and three dogs.
Ad absurdum per aspera
@Ad absurdum per aspera
Best posts made by Ad absurdum per aspera
RE: Dwellings of Oppo: Show Us Your Rad Pads
Location and landscaping make it hard to get a good angle on the house itself — it kinda vanishes, which is how we like it — so by way of apology here's the back-courtyard water feature and some hungry bois coming up for their lunch.
Judging from the size of the rocks that make up the waterfall, it was probably put in as the house was built ca. 1964 and certainly before the now big trees grew to a truck- and equipment-blocking level of maturity.
RE: Guys Summer Is Over...Justice Comes Via The USPS
I haven't gotten a jury summons in years and years! The last one was pre-printed with "Do Not Forward Outside Alameda County." I got it, of course, at my new address in the next county.
Previously I'd been kinda in rotation for several years. Once I was in the jury pool for a complex civil case—a business-law matter, that, they warned us, was likely to last all summer. (Not a sequestered jury, which is expensive and onerous and really not very common. Just a long trial.) The judge wanted to start by filtering out people for whom that might be a severe hardship.
Well, my unusually public spirited workplace gave fully paid jury leave, so I was okay on that point, and the case sounded kind of interesting. But I accidentally sabotaged my chances in voir dire.
The case was a suit and countersuit between an auto mall and an individual dealership that had pulled out of it. One of the attorneys wanted to know if I'd ever been to an auto mall.
"Because I like cars, and it would amount to betting twenty thousand dollars that I could swim across a shark tank with a fistful of hamburger."
When everybody quit laughing I was thanked and dismissed.
RE: I think my body has something against me.
@Gabriella -- You're basically living a roman-à-clef spec script for a reboot of "House, M.D.".
Seriously, what you describe as "not particularly unusual things" (for you) are in fact unusual things—kinda scary ones at that. If your doctor isn't coming to grips with it, is a new doctor, preferably one who can give a well directed specialist referral or two, at all feasible?
Customizing oneself into tall stacks of problems
So I was in a hotel parking lot and a Chrysler 300 comes in making a horrible tire related noise. which turns out to be just that. Four kids pile out.
After a while they're still there, along with some local friends. I wander over to be helpful and give them a Harbor Freight giveaway flashlight, of which I still have plenty from the old days.
Their problem, besides lack of light except from cell phones, was that the factory scissors jack couldn't lift the car high enough to clear the 22" rims, even with the obligatory banana peel tires.
I found some pieces of concrete block in a conveniently located pile of remodeling rubble so that they could put something under the jack.
Then one of them remembered that it's important to loosen lug nuts before jacking... whereupon they realized that the really long styled lug nuts were too deep for anything resembling a standard lug wrench. Fortunately one of them had a deep socket and a foot long breaker bar.
Unfortunately whoever had installed the damn things used a torque wrench whose dial only went to 11. I couldn't budge 'em, and I can budge pretty hard when I have to.
Which was just as well because their spare tire was already on another corner of the car.
I pulled out that second-to-last refuge of a scoundrel, a can of Fix-a-Flat, but after its ordeal the tire was not retaining air.
A thousand miles from home and the tools I would have used to solve such a problem, I went up to my room to call it a night, feeling vaguely nostalgic for once having been that age and making the mistakes of youth on my own first cars. When last seen they were discussing among themselves how one goes about summoning AAA...
RE: Happy Monday-a crime against humanity
"Tastefully modified while retaining originality"
There is more than one word that does not mean what he seems to think it means.
He took a car that, as an aesthetic object, the factory hit out of the park on their first swing, spent time and money detracting from that from bumper to bumper, and wants $50k for the result?
I don't even know where to start, though "on the whale tail, with a Sawzall" might be a good answer.
RE: You folks like planes?
@CB -- Supposedly they're going to convert some of those old radial-engined Beavers to electric, partnering with a company in Washington state called MagniX, though (all together now) supply chain problems have caused delays.
They also missed an opportunity to call it the Electric Aircraft Gas Engine Replacement, for EAGER Beaver.
RE: Most Repossessed Vehicles
Honestly, I'm not sure what conclusions it is safe to draw from just a list without further details to be drilled down into. At first glance it looks pretty similar to the most popular cars and light trucks. The interesting part is whether some models are disproportionately repo'd, and why.
Latest posts made by Ad absurdum per aspera
@HotWheelsAndFriedChicken -- It was acclaimed as a nice car -- an American hotrod visual variant on a Mercedes SLK -- but sales fell short of expectations even initially and then declined quite a bit. It finally got caught in the, ah, crossfire of Mercedes-era-Chrysler's financial woes and the Great Recession. I used to see a parked one fairly often in the neighborhood, but haven't encountered enough to form any stereotypes of their owners.
RE: Why does anyone rent from Hertz now?
@ash78 -- A lot probably depends on the lot. I've had nothing but good luck with Payless (since 2013, the most economical tier of Avis Budget Group) including a recent experience. However, it happens that I've only done business with them at OAK.
I usually cross-shop costcotravel.com and the deals du jour on the websites of airlines that I use a lot. The company and class of car and venue that give the best price can vary quite a bit.
When on official business, I go through our corporate travel website (perforce) and it usually comes up with one of the top-tier companies (there are special deals regarding LDW/CDW waiver, our tax status, etc. programmed in behind the scenes).
Something I've noticed is that the rental car market in the places where I usually go has softened up in recent months. The glory days of $15/day are probably over for good, but for the most part, so is paying $100/day for a very ordinary compact.
RE: Thoughts on the French condition
@ash78 -- I think a lot of the obvious pros are making an educated guess on what they can sell at a higher price at the flea market.
In our city, Goodwill has an extra cheap, only somewhat organized store next to their main donation-processing center. After they cream off the good stuff to send to the normal Goodwill stores, items that are of low value (due to wear and tear, being only part of an overall system, or just being a sort of thing that the US is awash in), but seem to be above trash/recycling grade,* go to this store, vaguely sorted into plastic "trucks". Some patrons (especially at opening time) are plainly getting certain kinds of items to resell.
Just one window into America's shadow economy, which is estimated at around $2 trillion a year or more... not to mention the lives of people who are hanging onto the lower rungs of the socioeconomic ladder as best they can.
*Well-meaning or just heedless people give thrift stores a lot of donations that are, realistically, junk.
@HammerheadFistpunch -- It's always a good thing to think about (preferably during dispatch, especially in crap weather). I wish they'd gone into this a bit more, but I guess that the underlying truck is the ubiquitous Peterbilt 337, and on it is one of the medium duty rollbacks, both with ratings comfortably in excess of what even this massive SUV weighs.
RE: A little bit of a momentous occasion…
@Gabriella --My penmanship at its best was more functional than attractive and was a good solid second-tier reason why the nuns were sure I would go to Hell when I died. Now, after 40+ years of using keyboards,* my cursive handwriting degrades noticeably after just a few words, writer's cramp sets in by the end of a page, and I have to puzzle over the results once a day or two has gone by anyway.
*Preferably clicky ones with largish "pitch" or distance between keys and nice long travel with smoothly progressing palpable resistance. The closer they are to an IBM Selectric typewriter (minus the overall height above the desk) the better I like them.
RE: Ever have to kick an attacking dog in the face, I did.
@Albino-Kangaroo -- Also not sure if it is legal to carry it here.
Pepper spray is legal for those 18 and older (or 14 and older with parental permission) in Washington state, and the state preempts lower jurisdictions from further restricting it.
In Oregon there is no such preemption and some local jurisdictions (say, Portland) seem to impose a size restriction that might rule out bear spray. Convicted felons who have not had their rights restored are prohibited from possessing it. The age floor there is 18.
RE: Good Morning, Oppo
@ttyymmnn -- Golden Age, baby. People are afraid of flying nowadays, but back then, it was a much less secure proposition.
Much the same could be said of driving, for that matter. Blow one of the tires they had back then, go off the three foot wide shoulder of the road, bounce through the ditch, and hit the conveniently located giant tree, and it's a toss-up whether your head goes through the windshield or the steering column restrains you by the aorta to prevent it.