Umamimi

javarod


Pony Peroration

Potent Pony Perceivings


2 June
Cat in hat
javarod

Oh look, i'm still using my very own new and improved calendar. -=sigh=- I suppose for you mundanes, its 23 May.

Wasn't planning on writing one of these posts tonight, after all, i'm supposed to be bed in ten, and i still have to take a shower. Bad kitty... bunny... umamimi... Whatever, i've so many, many aspects of me that fight to be front and center.

Any how, what started this was thinking about my upcoming whelpday, and supposing that my family expects a want list from me. Honestly, i don't really want much, dunno if i lack imagination, or i'm too old for this, or what, but not much. Lets see:


  1. Mustache comb, yeah, i'm serious

  2. Coffee maker, getting a room mate, should get a bigger one

  3. Galaxy Tab 7in

  4. Books, see my Goodreads shelves for what i have

Ummm... that's all folks. One or two things are on my Amazon wish list, but not the coffee maker. I can find a programmable around 10 cups at Wallyworld for $20, but not on Amazon, or not easily, the sizes are bizarre, and the price sorting is being weird.

What else is there to talk about?

Well, as we're talking about getting older, how about where the journey ends? I've know for a long time that i want to be cremated when i die, but what to do with the ashes? It occurred to me that the answer is rather obvious. I'm fond of symmetry, so it occurred to me (and don't ask how my mind got to this, my thought process is rather bonkers), that the best answer is to return to the beginning as it were. I was born in Niagara Falls, so why not spread my ashes over the falls? Yep, i think ending at the start sounds perfect to me.

Lets, what else? Shorts...


  • Holy crap do people smoke out here. Seriously, seems like everyone, every chance they get.

  • The weather is bonkers here, we got near missed by a tornado a bit ago, it hit Hazelwood, maybe 15 minutes from here. Since the beginning of the year we've had that, two snow storms, and an absolutely bizarre rain schedule. Seriously, i'm getting whiplash or something from this weather.

  • Hoping to get a new van, got my eye on a 92 Dodge, big sucker with the new version of the V8

  • Hit the Cracker Barrel up in the Florrisant area, its not our nearest, but wow, what service, i think its the first time we've ever given an extra high tip. Our standard is $5 unless the service sucks, this deserved and got far more. Heck the waitress offered me a to go coffee during the meal as she saw how fast i was drinking it, and got it for me with the check.

  • Saw Million Dollar Quartet. Vik was only vaguelly familiar with it, but i was drooling at the thought of getting tickets. I passed up the first set that was available, an 8PM show on a Wed doesn't work with my schedule, and thankfully a pair for Friday showed up. Outstanding show, better than i thought it would be, and i expected a lot. Oh, and the Fabulous Fox Theatre truly is fabulous.

  • Saw Weird Al at the Family Arena, really neat idea how he handles his voluminous playlist, he does short versions strung together as effectively one song, interrupting them with full versions. Really great show.

I'm sure i've forgotten other things we did, its been a while since i did one of these, and i've a memory like a colander after all.

What else, what else? Bumpy times here, behind on bills, been holding back to gather money for a much needed van, mine's threatening to keel over. Still, with the increased workload i've been doing, and the resolution of that matter, taking care of the bills shouldn't be an issue. Then it'll be time to tackle tax issues, dental issues, medical issues, and finally mental health. Really that last one should be higher on the list, but its the most time consuming, and the one without a defined end, so it needs to wait until i have less on my plate. Oh, and have to start rebuilding my credit too. Maybe i'll finally get lucky, and the universe will stop dropping a new complication on my lap, like the current van problem.

Hmmm, almost out of things to talk about, but i'm sure more will come up down the road. The only thing left is a tatoo idea. I'm wondering if i might be able to work out a way to incorporate a trident and a pitchfork into a Gemini symbol. Water and fire, two very opposite elements, perfect symbolization of the duality of a Gemini, no?

Oh, i know, one more thing, a new character i'm working on, Lapsang, a lapinetaur, 'bout 6ft tall, smokey grey fur speckled with black and white flecks, thick black hair with the occasional white fleck, running between his ears, and spilling down past his shoulders. Not much yet, but a good start.

Any how, time for that shower, i'm filthy, and then bed as i'm tired.

TTFN
((Crossposted from javataur.blogspot.com))


Moving
Umamimi
javarod
No big post here, just a quick note to anyone that's actually reading this that i'm now posting on my new Blog, Delivery From a Caffiend. Dunno if this is permanent, or just an experiment doomed to failure, but its where i'm posting right now. If you already follow me on Google+, you'll see announcements on my page when i update the blog. Basically we're experimenting with other choices in social media to see what works for me, so this might not go any where, but we'll see. My main focus these days is distancing m'self from Facebook.

For those that don't know, i can be found in a fairly large number of places:

Woggle Pony My ostensibly pony themed Tumblr blog
Woggle and Shir Coalpepper my FA accounts, the first for anything furry, the latter for Chakat stuff
Jack Harrison my Facebook, mostly used for link shares

I also have SoFurry, DA, IB, Hentai Foundery, Renderotica and Yaoi Gallery accounts, but those are basically lurker accounts, i don't actually post any content there. I'm sure there's others i've forgotten, but those are the major ones.

TTFN
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13 Jan 13
Umamimi
javarod
Hmmm, need a new name for our house, or perhaps we'll wait to the next one, rather unsure.

So, here we go again, another entry. Not quite back to weekly, but we're getting there, motivation seems to be a problem, but its better than the depression of last month. Feeling kinda bored but unmotivated at the moment.

I did add a wooden shelf to the wire shelving unit in the kitchen, i only made it around four to six inches wider, but it also raised the shelf up. The problem with this type of shelving unit is that the poles stick up past the top of the shelf, so it would block the microwave door, compounding the space problem that prevented putting the microwave and toaster oven side by side. Now that we have that, i don't have the ridiculous stack that i had, so that's a nice change.

Might be getting a new van, couldn't get a financing answer on the weekend, so i'm waiting for word on Monday. $3K for a 99 Dodge shuttle van. Biiig van, looks good, idled good, though i haven't test driven it yet. Some rust on the left rocker panel, but other wise good. Low but not suspiciously low miles (125 - 130K, forget exactly), and only real problem is the rear door, the piece that limits how far the door opened broke (full width door plus plastic retainer equals bad idea), door panel is askew, and the power lock on that door doesn't work. Nothing big, all minor and inexpensive things i can fix, in fact i might hit the junkyard and try to find an old retainer, say something from the eighties, it should fit as Dodge never made many changes, and it'll prolly be made of metal.

Of course here might be a law against me having a big van, i mean this was my load a week and a half ago in a minivan:



Yeah, all that and 3 1/2 or so sacks of mail came out of a Kia Sedona (Kia Carnival for all y'all durn ferners). Amazingly enough though, i managed to top that this past Monday, bringing this back in my first trip, along with 4 and 1/3 sacks of mail:



If i get a full sized, i might create a black hole or a singularity or something. Do that, and i'll have the TVA after me.

What else? Still working on my problems, not sure if insurance or taxes is next, prolly insurance, buying what is effectively a cargo van will make the insurance company unhappy since i haven't a proper work related policy. Aside from getting a proper business policy on the van, i also want to look into health insurance, i get it through Vik's job, but its expensive, might be worth shopping for my own. Also need life insurance, and i'd prefer to have a single company for as much of my insurance as possible (personal vehicle and renters), and maybe replace the $81/mo Gateway policy the client forces me to carry, some sorta equivalent to Workman's Comp type thing.

Oh, and need to do a marketing pitch, got any sales people reading this? I want to rent out the body of the van as a billboard, Budweiser is on my short list of targets.

Also getting over a cold, and vik_thor's in danger of coming down with it. Of course if he's smart, he'll attack it while its still just a sore throat unlike stupid 'ole me who waited and came down with a full blown cold. That's been seriously screwing with my work schedule.

Hmmm, we got to see Stomp Friday night. Interesting show, definitely worth going to, although i wasn't nearly as wowed by it as Vik. Still, quite interesting and very creative.

Oh, back to the house name thing, i love doing taur related puns for things as i'm a cattaur (in mind if not in body). Our last place in AZ was the Taur Pit, and our computer network has always had taur puns like Printaur, Computaur, Taurmac, Routtaur and so on. When we got out here in MO, it took me a while, but i came up with MO Taur Lodge for our place. Now a new place, and i'm really drawing a blank for a name, out of laziness i just tacked Mk II to the name and called it good, but it really doesn't work. Of course we might have to name still another place after this, as Chakat Silvertail will be taking me up on an invite to join us, things haven't ever really gotten off the ground for him in MD, so we'll give him crash space here, and then decide what comes next, we'll obviously need a bigger place if he stays. Even if he doesn't stay, we'll have to decide if we want to move again, our current stove sucks quite frankly, the oven doesn't work worth a damn either, and maintenance won't fix it. Throw in noisy kids and a dog upstairs, along with too little insulation in the outer walls, and while the location is great, and the price is quite good, it might be worth finding a new place. Still, that's months from now, Silver will join us around late June i'd say, haven't bothered to get the exact date, and our lease here is through All Hallow's Eve, so that's far off, we'll have to see what happens.

Hmmm, beyond that, nothing new, life is nicely boring around here really, only thing left to do is get my head screwed on right, but mental help will have to wait, dental might need priority, and fixing up business operations needs to be the top of the list, since no one will hire me, so having a solid and stable business is a must.

TTFN
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1 January 2013
Umamimi
javarod
"Been a while, hasn't it? Yep, my life is so exciting that i haven't had time to post."
Snerks, "I wish, reality has been a combination of lack of motivation, especially the last two months or so where i've been fighting depression, starting as apathy, and snowballing into far more of a severe case. On top of that, life is not very exciting for me, though work has been busy with a fairly constant stream of changes until about T-day. Oh, and we moved too."

"So, what has been notable? Well, those that follow vik_thor's journal, Panta, his cat passed on. 18 years, or was it 19? He was lucky enough to be around a long time, and aside from some serious weight loss (gradual, i'd not realized how much he'd lost, though i'd realized he was very thin), it wasn't until the last few months that he started to get worse. Nothing major at first, just him crying for no apparent reason, and sometimes seeming a touch confused. Oh, and occasionally some jumping problems, but basically he was still the same cat. He did become more insistent about getting attention, so much so that i moved my keyboard to the window sill as he decided his place was directly in front of my computer. It took a good month plus for me to stop looking for him when i walked in the front door, and still occasionally find m'self doing that, even though we live in a new place."

Panta

"What else? As i said, we moved, about 25 northwest, from south St Louis to Bridgeton in the northwest corner of St Louis county. This trimmed my commute from 27 miles each way to 3. The rent is higher, a 2 bedroom for $626 replacing an old 1 bedroom that was costing us $450, but i save almost the difference in gas. Savings on Vik's commute, car insurance and the elimination of our DirecTV (we're doing Hulu and Netflix) more than makes up the difference. Yep, the MO Taur Lodge has been replaced with the MO Taur Lodge Mk II. It could use a better name, but i struggled with the name when we got here. In Mesa we had the Taurpit, and the MO Taur Lodge was a fun one to come up with, but where do i go from there?

So, bigger place, but why? That would be Vik's book collection, yep, one bedroom is a library. I stripped the closet and put two shelving units in there for the comics and graphic novels, and lined three walls with book cases. We actually need more book cases, seriously.





I took one of the shots from the door way, and the other from the window looking at the door. That's a loooot of books, in fact Vik's Facebook has more pics. Much of the mess is tchotchkes that need to be sorted and displayed, but that will have to wait until the books are sorted. Vik has rubbed off on me in one way, my one case of books (yeah, only one of these is mine) is now sorted by more than just artist, some of the books are grouped.

What else? Well, there's Thanksgiving, went to Huntsville to see my family, first time i've seen them since 04, but 2500 miles will do that. Nothing real special, got caught up, but i've done a decent job of that between the phone, email and Facebook, so there wasn't a lot of that, just hanging out with family. I do miss the old T-days from when i grew up, my dad is one of seven kids, and they would all be there, and sometimes some of my grandmothers family, so lots and lots of people. This year was very small, even my sister and my Uncle John (i'd been expecting him and his partner who i've yet to meet or even see a pic of to be there) didn't make it. Still, it was good to see family again.

Christmas was spent with Vik's family at my cousin in laws. Like T-day, we were late for dinner, but once again, we ate and had a great time, and it was fun meeting more of his family. I did get a few presents, nothing major, i suppose that comes with being an adult. From my parents comes a toaster oven, pans for it (cute little set, smallest pans i've ever seen), a pair of pants. Vik got me a pair of the cutest boxers covered in playing cards, and a jigsaw puzzle. I'm looking forward to getting back to building puzzles. And from my grandparents there was a check for each of us.

So i suppose that brings us to new year. We didn't really celebrate, i've never really gotten the hype, but then i've lived hand to mouth so much, one year is much the same as the next, no? I don't do resolutions, they're just silly, but i do have a plan, in fact more than any previous year. Wrapping up the last work related thing, a van upgrade, i need a bigger one (going full sized, the saved mileage that comes with the greater capacity will save me about as much as i lose from the lower fuel economy). Once that's taken of, its time to tackle my tax situation, i owe years of filings, but when your budget is make money, pay what bills you can, paying to have your taxes prepared isn't exactly important. Heck, i'd love it if they'd make it easy for me, i'm stuck as an independent contractor which means i get to deal with the long form and way too much crap just to tell them i'm broke (seriously, i grossed about $20K 2011, mileage deduction will cut that in half or maybe even deeper). Give me a modified ES that allows me to record my mileage that i can use at the beginning and end of the year (estimate and final), and allow me to use the 1040EZ, and i'm covered. The mileage allowance over pays me to the point where i can afford to skip itemizing my non-vehicle deductions, they're very small really in this business. Oh well, we'll get that sorted out, straighten up any other financial matters, and should enter 2014 on a really positive note. Yep, this year will be about cleaning up the mess from struggling through the better part of the last decade.

So, that's it, not much for such a long time without an update, but that's my life, and that's the way i want it.

TTFN
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16 Sept
Umamimi
javarod
Welcome to this week's entry, for everything that happened up until 23 Sept for you luddites that haven't converted to my calendar yet. :P


Not much of a week, busy in all the wrong ways, so much so that i had to rent a U-Haul to move product for a new account with an old client. Still gotta get the book rolled out, that'll happen next week, and i'm not really looking forward to it as that's the part of the job that i hate. Oh well, that's how it goes.

So what else is there? Not much, new route at work with a new pay rate, a few less miles and a few more bucks, a good combo.

Still, i have a commute of 25 miles each way which obviously burns a lot of gas, a problem if i get the new van i'm looking at, 15MPG will cost me a lot. Apparently we have two new accounts coming up, and the main account is going to triple in volume for the holidays, so i'm going to need a bigger van. The one i'm looking at is an 02 E250, with 10K less miles than my current. Touch over kill, i could go with a 150, and i could wait a month or more, but this is a bright orange cargo van, rather uncommon, so i figured i'd give it a go. Odds are against me, and honestly i don't care, money is stressing me out, so while i could use it, the extra costs i could do without. Still, i like the used car dealer, so even if i fail this time, i'll try again, prolly a week before our move, that way the commute isn't an issue, and we can use the van for the move. Plus i'll have more money from the new client, plus some money from one of my existing clients, so i'll be in a better place. Heck, i'm starting to realize that i might not even be able to come up with a down payment for the van, so it'll prolly not happen.

Hmmm, speaking of the U-Haul job, that was a nightmare, but some how all too typical for this client, they seem to have some of the dumbest clients. And i ran my toe over with a loaded pallet jack. I'm expecting to lose the nail as its nearly black right now... Oh well, lost that one a few times before.

Aside from that, things are pretty boring for now, the second half of the week was quite mundane, which is how i like it. New route is sorted out and running mostly smooth, we ran into a small bump this week, a very rare delivery location came up, and no one at it knew who's suppose to receive it. Aside from that, its all sorted and smooth, the only way it could be better is for them to finish some construction over at I-44 which would save me a mile or so.

Weekend has been slow, i slept in yesterday more or less, then we grabbed some food on a deal at Chris'. Not as much of a savings as usual i suppose, $15 with tip and tax, but we ate good. I got a 1/2# burger medium-rare, upgraded to onion rings on the side, and started with a cup of chili. Vik started with a cup of soup (split pea i think), and had eggs, potatoes, ham steak and pancakes. Coffee for him, soda for me, and $20 of the bill already paid for at half price. Finally a place that understands what medium-rare is. Sure, it was a touch undercooked in the center, but considering that i'm lucky if it comes out medium-well, and most places don't seem to know how to do anything less than well, i can certainly live with that. After that we dropped off some more info to the car dealer, fed Vik's car, stopped at Aldi's for food shopping, and swung by the pet store for cat food, and that last trip got interesting because i didn't realize how much chaos the I-64 construction would cause.

Today is chores, i washed the kictchen cabinets out and slightly reorganized the dishes. Washed the dishes, finally getting the glasses and cups done which required some creativity.



Yeah, that's a spare wire shelf atop a bath towel on the counter. Problem is that the strainer has no cup hooks, and my daily load seems to be enough to fill or nearly fill it, so i wind up with no where to put them, and at this point, most of them are dirty because of that. Well, now everything is clean.

And that folks is my week, what's yours?

Oh, and a video before i go, warning, it'll make you cry, and i'd love to see CBS release a full length alternate video for the song based on what they did in NCIS where they used it at the end of Recruited (season 8 episode 12).




Forwith, march
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9 Sept Addendum- Software things
Umamimi
javarod
Whoops, forgot about this, browser and Google stuff.

Playing a little with Rockmelt, interesting browser, social media capable, particularly Facebook. That said, its not limited to it, but rather has two side bars, the left one covers social media and sites you select, while the right covers Facebook messenger. Nice enough, though i'd like a real IM client built in, plus its built on an old copy of Chrome. Oh, and some of its links like the new user link are 404, which doesn't promise much support.

Typically i'm using Firefox, giving it another go, yet i've not found a browser i really like, they all have flaws of one sort or another. I'd like some way to switch between users/accounts in Firefox so i can use different log ins on Google and other sites rather than having multiple browsers. Back in the old days you could, it'd ask which account you wanted to use even if there was only one, but not now, and there doesn't seem to be a way to change that. Anyone know of a way to change that?

Speaking of accounts, it amazes me how badly Google handles multiple accounts. One of their newer features is the ability to log into more than one account at a time, but not only does it not work with all services, it works rather weirdly at times. Google docs/drive is one of the best examples, if i'm logged into multiple accounts, i have to log out of all of them, then log back into the one i want to work in. What's with that? I can kinda understand having to log out of all other accounts, annoying and stupid, but no big thing, but having to log out of everything and then back in on only one? That's just weird and annoying.

Oh well, if anyone has suggestions for improving my web access, fire away, i'm using a Mac if that matters.
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9 Sept
Umamimi
javarod
Whelp, another post. Yep, missed last week's, was busy, and just couldn't get motivated to get to it until now. So...

What's on my mind? Not much really, starting to kill off the DVR contents, gotta get both of them cleared before we move as dishes aren't allowed at the new place. Early termination will cost us, but considering how expensive DirecTV is, even after paying the fee, we'll likely save some money switching to cable. Admittedly what we have is over kill, partially 'cause of our old roomie, we have his DVR as well as our current one, so two DVR features, HD service, and all that. Plus the weather knocks out service about once every week or so, so going with cable will prolly be good. And we already use the local cable company for our internet, so there's some bundling savings there.

Last week wasn't bad, i spent Saturday working, would've been the whole weekend, but i sorta cheated. My personal belief in doing the job right leads me to use a random number generator to select audit sites, but this time i clumped them to save time. I have to say that my client is a pain in the ass, for whatever reason, he does a few large routes, rather than the typical 100 count limit, and he prefers system wide audits rather than checking one little corner each month. It just doesn't pay enough for the nuisance, but i do need the money. I have been approached by an old client but they don't have much work out here for me, so that won't replace it. Still, at least i got it done in one day, that left time for fun on Sunday.

It started at City Diner at the Fabulous Fox Theatre, then over to the Campbell House Museum.

I had a slinger, a bit different than the slinger i had the previous week, the meat this time was breakfast sausage patties. Unfortunately it wasn't well built, the sausage was off to one side, but it was still quite tasty, and the diner is neat ifn really tiny. Seriously, i don't really get why they're there, parking sucks, but only as much as parking always sucks downtown, and its tiny, yet they're likely paying through the nose. I much prefer the other location further south on Grand (yeah, they're both on Grand). I seriously like Courtesy Diner better, your basic no frills nothing special diner, its just a place to eat, nothing else.

Now for the museum, we had a Groupon type deal which brought us there. Boy, glad we had that, we might not have found that jewel otherwise. Its a guided tour, that's the only way to see it, and its really interesting. The city has been running it since the early forties, and are lucky to have quite a lot of the Campbell's belongings there, plus tons of info about them. If you like museums and you're visiting the city, this should definitely be on your list.

Hmmm, can't recall doing much else, but that was a fairly good way to spend the weekend. Now for the week, now that's been interesting, major changes at work, all in my favor really. New pay rate, i'm making a bit more now, doubly so as i have a new route, which means less miles, same number of stops, and more pay. Started the new route Thurs, nailed down a few details on Fri, and i think from here on out, we'll be rolling good. There's some construction that gets in my way on one piece of the route, but that's alright, its not like these three stops work well together no matter how you run them, the construction just adds another minor wrinkle. I'm also in the market for a van, a Safari/Astro would prolly do the job, especially if i pull out the passenger seat like i've resorted to in my Sedona, but i'm concerned with the age, mileage and repair costs, those stopped being made in 07. Honestly i'd trust an 02 full sized more than that, those haven't changed much in around 20 years, repairability and parts availability is better. Tomorrow i'll be giving a look at one that caught my eye on Craigslist because of the colour. Yeah, silly, but a cargo van is a cargo van is a cargo van, and they're always white. Much as i'd love a B2500 with a six so long as its newer than a 92, Dodge does get poor gas mileage, so Dodge is out, though if i actually found an old Plymouth full sized, i might just by it for the oddness of it. More likely i'm going to buy one of the many Ford or GM cargo vans, this one stands out as its bright orange which is rather odd. Oh, and its not burdened with construction gear in it (shelves, racks, etc). Not that i wouldn't mind a barrier wall, but shelves and ladder racks are just something i gotta strip and rid m'self of. Still, its not in the budget unless they want to trade it for advertising, so while i'm going to look, i'm prolly not going to buy anytime soon.

Speaking of buying and money, right now my bank accounts tapped out, and i'm peeved at my credit union, might be time to jump ship. I got my check on Friday, but it wasn't dated until Sat, and the bank refused to accept it until then. Considering that only some of the branches are open on Saturday, and those are only open for three hours, its a pain in the ass, and i didn't get over there in time. I would've been fine with them not crediting it until Sat or even Mon, but its a pain in the ass to have to schedule my Saturday around them. I'm considering Frontenac Bank, a small local one that's based down the street from my main client. Plus we're moving up that way, so definitely convenient. Not much weekend hours, but that's minor, heck number of branches, and hours don't matter much, i do everything by check card and the occasional check, so i can live with that, so long as they'll let me drop the check off even if its early. So much for the advantage of credit unions, this'll free up $25 i have tied up in my membership.

This weekend wasn't much, we didn't get around to doing breakfast out this time, though we did use up a few more deals yesterday. Tropicana Bowl for a couple games, two dogs and two sodas was a fun way to spend the early afternoon. Neat alley, but i think i like the Olivette Lanes better, and we'll have to try Kingpin Lanes which is around the corner from the new apartment. Whoever designed Tropicana Bowl was having fun, it faces east and has 50 lanes, half on the north side, half on the south, with in order from front to back, the lounge, cafeteria and counter in the middle. Really interesting design compared to your typical alley.

We followed that with pizza in downtown, another deal, and while good, it still wasn't quite what i'm looking for. Much closer to what i had back in NJ, but i still haven't found the right pizza yet. We also went down the road to a store called Macro Sun, something Vik had spotted while down there. Interesting store, not my thing really, but neat, and i got my dad's b-day gift while i was there. B-days are done, i got my mom's present at the museum last weekend, so i'm covered for those.

Not a bad weekend, getting some cleaning done today, finished up catching up with FurAffinity, i did my Woggle account as well as my DA and IB accounts yesterday, and today was my Coalpepper account. Hilariously enough, while FA was down, i had time on my hands, and it came back just in time for me to be busy sorting my route out, so i couldn't get over there until weekend. I also posted about a commission, i do have someone in mind for it, but i'm also entertaining other choices, even if i don't hire for this one, i'll hire down the road, i'm always scraping money up for commissions after all.

Oh, one more thing, look, new pic of me. Not quite accurate as i took time to get a haircut last week, and i needed a shave, but you can see my ear cuff, my new thing in this pic.



Ah well, on with today.
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23 August
Umamimi
javarod
Stretches, "Yep, i'm still going on with those wacky dates. Nearly the end of a month according to my calendar, i suppose a couple days into a new month by yours. Gotta turn my invoice in on Tues, a few days late, but can't be helped when you bill actual miles and the end of the month is on a Friday. Also gotta bill NCI, i'll make something up for that since there's been lots of little bits and pieces."

"So, what's going on... Not much, not much, life in general. While money is tight, i shouldn't complain too much, we get to do what we want to do, which these days isn't common. Of course much of that comes from the fact that i don't want much, good books to read, good food... Well, decent, i'm not chef, barely even a cook, but i manage. I like to eat out, Sunday breakfast if nothing else, although that's a bit uncommon right now for a variety of schedule reasons. Yesterday it was dinner out, last week it was Saturday breakfast since i'd run out of ingredients. Pizza at least once every two weeks, although for whatever reason despite all the pizza i've eaten, i still enjoy eating it far more often than is healthy. I'm not one to keep much of the past, i keep few nicknacks, just recently cleaned out my photos, getting rid of a lot of them. I enjoy the now, and think little of the past, although i do worry about the future, more so as i get older and start paying the price of not having foresight when i was younger. That and seeing the celebrities i grew up with passing away, sorta feel rather mortal these days, when fifteen or so years ago i would've sworn that i was immortal. Still, i've a wonderful man to spend my life with, so i suppose i shouldn't worry. But, as i was saying, i don't want much, whether that's from an inability to get attached, or just having never had a seriously good paying job combined with poor money management that forces one to be practical first. Still, being of simple wants means i want for little in my life, and i'm happy with a quiet simple life.

Not much going on, little caught my eye this week, i think i covered everything last week, the only thing i missed was Waze. What is Waze? A really neat navigation program combined with a social network. Not a combination that makes sense at first glance until you realize what you have, crowd sourced reports on traffic, speed traps, accidents and so on on top of the data that's already available to a navigation program. Throw in a great design for reporting, very driver friendly, and you've got a great program. Only problem is that its a battery hog, you can practically watch the battery level drop on my phone when i use it. That's as much a problem with my phone as it is with the program, by its nature that program is going to be a battery hog, so i really don't use it much. MODOT has a Twitter feed, so that does a decent job of keeping me up to date, and i know my route and alternates when necessary, so its basically unnecessary to use it. Still, if you need it, i'd recommend it above Google Navigate, and way above Telenav (the less said about that, the better).

Hmmm, i suppose that brings up work, and that's an interesting subject right now. No negatives, but we do have a new boss who i like better than the old boss. The old boss left for greener pastures, which is for the best, he was alright as a terminal manager, but not for it. In some ways he's worse than me, i got the impression he's worked all kinds of jobs, restaurant, car rental, gone back to restaurant work, but not much shipping experience. The new boss on the other hand has a lot of experience, having come from another company to this one, having worked on the initial set up of the big account, working out of their facility to get all the bugs out of it, all aspects from the semi trucks to working out the driver details, and having last worked out of the KC terminal. Apparently ours is one of the smallest terminals and actually a loss leader. Still, good management can change that, or at least shrink the loss, and i think he's starting to realize how dysfunctional this place is. We really see eye to eye on things, and i'm going to throw a proposal at him to solve a lot of the problems here. Of course it comes with a complication, one that i'll prolly turn to my parents to solve. While a full sized van would do the job, and i could scrape up a down payment to buy one, a small truck would do better, something like a ten foot U-Haul or Budget truck (i prefer Budget's version), but that requires me to find my own financing which is a bit of a problem, and where they come in. Still, with my route, i have the option of using a full sized van and swinging into the terminal to unload in the middle of my route. Most of what needs to be fixed is overlapping routes and overloaded routes, something i think i can offer an inexpensive solution to, so i'm going to propose it to the boss and see what happens.

At least temporarily i'll be covering part of another route, and may get a raise out of that, as i'm currently paid by the mile, 60¢/mi which works out to just shy of $4.75 per stop, and the stuff i'm covering comes in at $5.25/stop since its too dense to make per mile work. Of course Paul isn't sure he can pay at too different rates, and seems amicable to giving me a raise to $5.25/stop on the current route which solves that problem and gives me a tiny raise.

Speaking of boss, initially Paul was just temporary, either he'd choose to stay, or he'd hire his replacement, so i put my hat in. Unfortunately his wife decided she wanted to move here, so he's permanent. Still, never hurts to make it clear that you want to be more. I've made it clear that i'm willing to take on more work, temporarily (one time pick ups like last week, or until a contractor can be brought in) or permanently, so we'll see what the future brings.

I think that's really all there is to talk about, i talked last week about my various account changes, Coalpepper for chakat related stuff, whether Coalpepper art, stories, etc or stuff related to my other chakat characters or my projects (the Chakat Registry on Google and the infamous Chakat FA Account List posted quarterly), Woggle for all my other furry stuff (Woggle is my main fursona), and the other Woggle for my MLP version (often NSFW at least the stuff i reblog). I think that last one was missed last week, its the newest change was to split that character off and give my Tumblr a new ID and a purpose finally, not that i'm using it all that much.

Oh, and i'm now using Growlnotes to create a new quotes library after my last software choice went tits up. Hopefully this one doesn't store the contents in a proprietary unrecoverable format. GoodReads has a wonderful taste in quotes, and i get one a day from them. GR is also a good source for storing and sharing one's library, i've got mine up there, actually it was partially up there for a while, but they've only recently gotten a native Android app, previously there was an app that worked with Goodreads, just not well, so i'd started using another service that wasn't nearly as good."

Looks out the window, "Oh look, sun. If that keeps up, i might get to do my weekend plans tomorrow, be nice, Six Flags St Louis (they really need a better name for it) since we have a season pass, and they have a Labor Day weekend fireworks show, although it keeps getting canceled do to weather which is a large part of why we haven't gone yet this weekend. Speaking of weather, boy its been rainy, we got the tail end of the storm, and its been dumping buckets on us. The trip to visit vik_thor's mom for her birthday and especially the trip back was interesting. They really need to figure out what to do about lane markers out here, the last ten miles or so was spent driving on freeways without being able to see where the lines were. I know my night vision isn't great, but it ain't that bad, the line painting out here just sucks. We also caught a fair amount while we were out last night.

Oh yeah, there's something to talk about, we drove down to Festus some thirty miles or so south of here to get more book cases. We picked up one last week in pretty good condition for $10, one of the big prefabs out of St Peters, but yesterday was a better catch, three of them (figure $35 or thereabout new at Walmart) for $8 each, or $20 for the lot. I snapped that up, and between the four of them, we're prolly at the point where there's enough shelves for all of Vik's books. Of course there's so many that we're planning to rent a two bedroom at the new place, one bedroom for us, and one for the books. It does mean that our new rent will be some $200 more than our current, but just the fuel savings on my commute alone will pay for most of that, then there's the small savings on Vik's, and any insurance savings, so there's not really any increase. Plus with everything a stone's throw away, during fair weather months, we'll prolly take up bicycling to the stores (its no more than two miles to WalMart, K-Mart, Aldi's, and so on), along with work, so that'll save us money too. And then there's the possibility of a small raise, or a larger one if my proposal gets taken, even with the higher expenses of a full sized van (there's one i'd love to buy now) or a truck (mileage could drop to as little as 10MPG compared to the current 20MPG), i should be getting at least a small amount of increased profit. The apartment complex has a low rating on Apartment Ratings, but few people that are happy write reviews, plus i think there's been some management changes, the people in the office have been really happy to work with us, plus the place has a furnished rentable for guests ($50/day, weekly rate available), and looks good ifn a bit on the old side."

Well, onwards, the road before me, the road behind, my eye on the first star on the left, my mind and heart open, curiosity my constant companion
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15 August Addendum...
Dodgeball
javarod
Forgot some things, but that's to be expected, no?

Lets, today, forgot about today.

It started with Courtesy Diner, a very old fashioned diner here. Seriously, we seated ourselves, no hostess here, the waitress came over with our utensils and asked if we were ready to order or needed time. Yeah, after looking at the menu, i can understand why, basically the menu is bacon and eggs in various combinations. Ok, there's more to it, but it is a seriously basic diner menu, there's not a lot of variety. I got the slinger which is basically a hamburger, two eggs, hash browns and chili piled up on a plate. I also took onions and cheese since it was offered, and chili is always better like that. Food was quite good, i quite enjoyed it, it didn't look pretty, but it tasted good. I definitely want to go back. We wound up going out for breakfast as i ran short on ingredients for cooking, or rather ran out of eggs, what i usually make for breakfast (yeah, i'm not real unique). That just means breakfast in tomorrow instead.

We followed that with Olivette Lanes in... wait for it... in Olivette, MO. Of course it didn't open until 11, so we ran around the corner to Dobbs Tire and got Vik's tire fixed under warranty. Then it was off to bowl thanks to Deal Chicken, three games for two people including shoe rental. The place is one of the many, many independent bowling alleys here, in fact i'm not sure if AMF or Brunswick even have any lanes out here. Great place, a bit old, but has a cool and unique vibe. And we had fun bowling, even if Vik beat me. The last game was close, but that's mostly because he faded, not that i suddenly gained any real skills. We're going to have to do this again, and we will be, i believe we have another expiring bowling deal coming up next month, this time in Clayton, Tropicana Lanes i think.
The scores:
Game 1 Vik 165 Jack 81

Game 2 Vik 131 Jack 87

Game 3 Vik 86 Jack 82


At least i'm consistent, no?

After that it was off to work, just jamming the stuff from one of our storage units into the other as we're trying to cut down to one. Its crowded, but over the course of the next month we expect to get rid of equipment, we have some nice metal multi-boxes for sale, and we're shifting equipment to other markets that Sean runs. Also i'm expecting to get as many as another half dozen boxes set up out in IL and one set up as an upgrade out here.

After that it was lunch, another deal, this time at Smiles Coffee Shop. Hours don't make much sense for a coffee shop, neither early in the morn, nor late at night. I had a cobb salad which was good, but they'd run out of hard boiled eggs, and Vik had a wrap which he seemed to like. Over all the food was good, and we had to spend some money as the deal came up short, but i'm not sure we'll be back, we'll see.


So, that covers food related things here, but its not everything, i could use some help on a recipe. This here is my meatloaf ingredients:

2# ground meat 1 onion chopped fine
2 eggs beaten 1 carrot chopped fine
1/2 cup milk 2 stalks of celery chopped fine
2/3 cup quick oats 2 cloves of garlic minced
1 tsp salt 1/2 tsp of black pepper
1/4 tsp Italian seasoning 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce 1 tsp hot sauce

There's two problems here. One is the seasoning, i need to work on that, its not quite to my taste. The bigger is consistency, even now when i'm nomming on left overs, i have to deal with it falling apart. My loaf doesn't stay a loaf. I'm not very skilled as a cook, i can follow recipes, but creating... ehhhh, not so good. This is pieced together from other meatloaf recipes, no original ideas here other than tweaking the balance of ingredients since sometimes two recipes use different amounts of the same ingredient. Because of that, i've absolutely no idea what's wrong with the recipe.

Ok, so now with that, i think we're covered, so have a ball.
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15 August
Woggle driving
javarod
Ok, we're actually on time, be afraid.

What's with the date? That again, its simple, i've got a better or at least simpler calendar i use, 4 weeks of 7 days for every month but December (29 days, 30 on Leap Year), with 13 Months in the year, adding Quintillis, the original 7th month as the 7th month slotting between June and July.

Now, on with things. Lets see, as my music line shows, watching the new season. Interesting twist, instead of experienced food truck operators, they're all people looking to start in the restaurant business, move up in it, or get going again. Of the entries, i think Pizza Mikes, Pop-A-Waffle and Under the Crust have menus best suited to this show and the challenges they throw your way, things like declaring it a meatless day, since in all cases what you have is basically bread with a topping or filling, so as long as you can turn on your cooking equipment, you can make something that fits your truck. Nonna's Kitchen might work too, Italian food, there's quite a bit of flexibility there too. The others though, they're rather narrowly focused, so they could be in trouble if the show throws them a curve ball, something they like to do.

So what's on the docket this week?

One interesting thing from work is that i'm nudging the company to offer a service slotted between standard orders and on demand, if they go for it i'd likely change routes and need to actually buy a truck, and i mean a truck, prolly a used 10ft U-Haul or Budget truck which supposedly gets about the fuel mileage of a full sized van while carrying 400 cu. ft. of cargo, a far cry from my current 128 cu ft. Still, lot more to drive, and i'll have to revamp my work flow, currently i have three doors to work from, with that, i'll be down to one. Oh well, we can adapt, i'm still polishing my current model, although i think i'm there.

For funny things to see, we had a Nissan Cube with an adjustable aluminum spoiler, which just looks beyond ridiculous. Also so a van that must've backed into a pole or something, it had popped in the left corner which is just hollow plastic, and they stuck a sticker from their insurance company in the dent.

Clever vehicle sites, how about red E-mix for the company name on a cement mixer? Or how about the Office Essentials Inc truck with the URL of www.offess.com? Keeping the URL short is always an important thing, but at the same time, it needs to be memorable in some way. That one pronounces as office and yet contains three letters from each word of the name, which is rather clever.

Texas City, MO? Boy, gotta make things confusing when you say your from Texas, or anytime something significant hits the news from there. I prolly should do something research, since i am rather curious how it wound up with that name.

An accident at Chain of Rocks Rd and Illinois Rt 3 took out a traffic light, and it took nearly two weeks to fix it. Seriously? Most towns can get it done in two weeks, and i think this was the job of IDOT... Or should we call them IDiOT? I'll give that it might be Madison County's fault, but i'm assuming since the light is on a state route, its IDiOT's job.

Got a new cell phone holder, necessary since i broke another one. Seriously, they last about two months with me, that's all, thanks to plastic construction. The new one is from Home Depot, Husky brand, ostensibly heavy duty nylon cordura with a stainless steel clip. As well as the clip to attach it to your belt, it also has a loop to do the same thing, a small flashlight holder than can also be used for a pen and a loop with a carabiner on it. All this for $6.99, which is impressive considering that the cheaper previous one cost $5 at Big Lots. That little bit of a price difference for so much more. Lets see, i have a pen in its place, and i removed the carabiner and clipped my watch on there. Oh, and my iPod will fit in the pocket with my phone. Basically everything i typically carry with me in one small spot., i love the efficiency. Oh, and since i've started wearing it on the left side, i use both the clip and the loop because my belt over laps in the same place that i'm wearing it, so the tip goes in the loop. I got into the habit of wearing my phone horizontally on the right side from the old days of phones with antenna, the antenna had a habit of digging into my stomach, and i even bent the antenna on one of them. Of course antennae are a thing of the past, so no need to worry about that problem, but it has become a habit.

Not much else going on, watching Warehouse 13 at this point, need to get caught up on a lot of TV shows. Oh, ursulav is playing with a new story, a couple of snippets have been posted on her journal, and its really good. That woman is amazing, i found her through pics on VCL like this. Since then she's done a lot of things, most notable writing children's books, and doing a regular web cast or whatever you call them about various instant foods her and her boyfriend have tried, often stuff sent in by her fans. Vik's into that, i've over heard bits and pieces, its amusing, but i doubt i'd bother with it.

Well, that's about it folks, good night and good luck.
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