Category Archives: Life

The day to day aspects of life: what is happening around the house and in our family

Power washers- the Karcher is dead, long live the Sun Joe

I have owned several electric power washers over my life, all of which were more or less suitable to my limited needs.  I use them to clean my deck, wash my car, and wash my motorcycle: nothing heavy.  And every single power washer I’ve owned has failed me in some way or another.  This post is an overview of my power washer history and an introduction to my latest ‘pending failure’: the Sun Joe SPX3001

Sun_Joe_SPX3001

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Space… its big- there’s lots of space out there, right?

I’m a strong advocate for the exploration of space.  I also firmly believe that we need humans out there.  Yes, use robotics to validate assumptions, but please let’s get humans on the surface of the Moon and Mars before I die of old age.  

But I also think Donald Trump is one of the most comically inept and arguably outright ignorant human beings to walk the Earth.  The man quite seriously disgusts me, and strains my ability to show respect for the office of President of the United States, or for the citizens of that country that elected this dumpster fire on legs.  So when Donald Trump signs one of his famous Executive Orders in support of space exploration with Buzz Aldrin, an honest to goodness hero, standing beside him, I’m really, really torn.

Screenshot 2017 07 01 10 47 06

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Disruptions in our furry family

My wife and I love our critters, in particular our feline family. It has been the norm during our 27 years together for us to have something like six or seven cats sharing our household. This isn’t ‘by design’, but it seems to work out that way.

For the first time in a while, however, we are down to five cats in our house. And it is a hard change to accept.

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Cecil the Lion: hunting is not a ‘sport’

There has been a great deal of coverage lately regarding the killing of a single particular lion in Zimbabwe by an American trophy hunter.  I’m angry, and wish no good will upon the pathetic excuse for a human being who ‘hunted’ this lion- but that isn’t what I want to talk about here.

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Getting quantified: Fitbit Flex

Two weeks ago I purchased and started using a Fitbit Flex.  It is basically a set of accelerometers, some computing, and a Bluetooth wireless connection bundled into something you can wear on your wrist.  This little gadget won’t turn me into an athlete, but I’m hoping it might make me a little more aware of my astounding lack of activity.  And in the process, possibly shame me into moving a bit.

Fitbit flex

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My theory as to why some guys are threatened by “Geek Girls”

I’ve been a geek since before I knew the term existed.  I would say it probably started when I was about four or five years old, when my sister started reading me The Hobbit.  I didn’t truly “identify” as a geek until I was about 14 or 15, and it was part of a process of realizing I wasn’t alone.  I discovered that other people liked Star Trek, perhaps a bit too passionately.  There were folks out there like me that read Asimov, Tolkien, Pohl, McCaffrey,  Niven, Lackey, Heinlein, and the rest of the pantheon like a form of alternate truth.  People who saw the world through a slightly different lens, intensely, with a quiet (or sometimes not so quiet) passion. 

Given my long-standing sense of myself as a “geek”, my ears perk up when I see discussions of what the term means.  Of who is “in” or “out”.  Apparently there is some sort of brouhaha in progress of late regarding whether female geeks exist.  Some guys claim they don’t, or that many of those of the feminine persuasion who claim to be geeks are lying.  One recent article I read on the topic gave me much food for thought.  For that I thank the author, Sarah Kuhn: thinking is something I like to do 😉

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First month of 2012

Christmas is a distant speck in my rear-view mirror, and we are already most of a month into 2012.  I wouldn’t really say I have any “resolutions” for the New Year, but I do have some goals.  It is odd how the completely arbitrary change over of a calendar causes me to re-examine my life, but I will take advantage of it.  It is time to give some thought to what I want to focus on in the next year.

 

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Motorcycle Road Trip #2: the Coastal Highway and Computer History Museum

My second big motorcycle trip of the year took me down the Coastal Highway (Highway 101).   Road trip #1 had already established that I enjoyed motorcycle touring, so now it was about seeing where that enjoyment would take me.  I still had questions I wanted to ask myself during the ride: how far in a day is too far, are scenic roads just a little more enjoyable than “main” highways, or a lot, and is driving through unfamiliar cities on a motorbike ‘way more scary than in a car?  I packed up my bike and set out on August 1 to see what new things I could learn about myself…

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And Jasmine too…

We knew it was a possibility, perhaps even probable.  But that didn’t make losing Jasmine at the end of May any easier.

Irene and I both noticed something wrong as soon as we came back from our week-long cruise.  Jasmine looked “puffy” around her chest, and seemed somewhat disinterested and dull.  After a few days, she seemed to be having problems breathing.  An X-Ray showed fluid and a possible mass in her chest cavity.  Fluid was drawn, and ultrasound performed.  The mass was quite large, 4 cm by 2 cm, and looked like a tumor.  The fluid drawn from the chest, which eased Jasmine’s breathing for only a day or so, was also tested: it confirmed the worse.

Jasmine kitten- October, 2010

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