Friday, July 19, 2019

Back In The Saddle


Took on another part time (3 days a week) job. With the improved economy, fewer people are behind on their mortgages, so I’m getting less work. (Thanks, President Trump).

There are some upcoming expenses and I avoid all debt so this move, for me, makes financial sense.

The job is driving the big Nissan van with up to seven drivers to a rally point near the Wyoming border. It is a round trip of 130 miles and takes about 3 ½ hours. These drivers operate big tankers that collect oil drilling waste and take the waste to a processing plant.

The plan is to do the job for three months this summer. Come winter and I am gone. Pays $15 an hour.

I’ll still keep the mortgage gig.

Yeah, yeah, at 75 I should be ‘retired’. Fuck that, I’ll go until I drop.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Harridans For Trump 2020


Who remembers when newly elected members of Congress were unknown outside their districts? Now we have four who have garnered national  attention, often on a daily basis, of the media, left and right.

What a gift for President Trump! Potential voters aren’t sleeping now, but alert and pissed off. Any potential Democrat presidential candidate who might qualify as a rational adult is being forced on the defensive by these four harridans as they stir up the (P)regressive side of the Democrat party.

These four are raking in the long coin from donations that would otherwise go to electable Democrats. The pissed off Deplorables who voted in President Trump are staying pissed off (and awake).

It probably doesn’t hurt the President Speaker Pelosi isn’t covering herself in glory.  She can’t shut them up, and she seems to have lost personal control. Running from the podium and leaving someone else to gavel “adjourned”  after causing a firestorm with baseless allegations of racism is just pathetic, IMO.

In other news, popcorn futures are soaring.

Day Tripping


My employer wanted a debtor contacted near Glenwood Springs, CO and upped their offer until my greed took over. It turned out to be 472 miles round trip excursion.  Like many states, Colorado has two seasons, winter and construction. Add the many rock falls that require mitigation and the Google Maps travel time forecasts are laughable.

Sorry, no pictures. Technical problems (sick computer). Very little snow in the high country now as opposed to trips over Vail Pass in the winter.

Oh, how I revel in the scenery, no matter how many times I’ve made the trip. Oh, how I get frustrated with the ^%$@@$%^& brain dead tourists.

One trip I enjoy is west on I-70 from Grand Junction to the intersection with I-15. 

Miles and miles of this.

Reward is scenes like this.


Now days I’m more of a homebody.  Semi-retired and all that.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Piss and Moan

Ethanol gasoline has finally eroded various rubber components in my Mitsubishi Might Max carburetor and it won't pass emissions.

A local shop also sells landscaping equipment and used motorcycles so has two techs who know carbs. One hour labor to swap out. OK, find a carb. Price seems to run in the $350 - $450 range!

Partial rebuild kits, which doesn't include a needed solenoid, can be had for around $75. Do I want to tackle a rebuild with my 75 year old fingers with some carpel tunnel problems?

I'm keeping the truck. It has been the most reliable, trouble free vehicle I've owned. 

Colorado has made it difficult, and expensive, to register a vehicle outside the areas requiring emissions. Doable, but a pain in the ass.

For sure, this gives Sisty another over thinking subject to bust my balls.

Having another vehicle for a daily driver helps. The Mighty Max bumper hides the date decals effectively but any traffic stop is trouble.

Oh well, it isn't like I haven't been a lifelong scofflaw. That won't change.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Pathetic

Seems most of the blogs I read have received the same spam comment.

 AUTOMATED TELLER (BLANK ATM CARD)

I haven't, and I feel slighted. Guess my scribbles are too pathetic to even attract spammers.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Well Shucky Darn It (Updated)


Monday drove to Pine Bluffs, WY to see the UP 4014 Big Boy going east for a Midwest tour. Out of a half dozen memory cards for my camera, I picked the one that is “corrupt”. Hence, no pictures.

There is time, Indian time, and Union Pacific Steam time. Scheduled to come through Pine Bluffs at 0930, the train didn’t leave Cheyenne until 1130 or so. It needed some last minute repairs. Since the engine is 78 years old and extremely complex, can’t find fault with the UP.

Actually watched it pass at Burns, WY. While waiting, I looked at some property in the area with an eye toward COLOEXIT.

When it came by, it was very quiet. Cheyenne is 6063’ ASL and Sydney, NE, the next scheduled stop, is 4088’ ASL. Going downhill it wasn’t working too hard.

The UP is frugal. May be why it has lasted 150 years. In addition to the usual cars, the Big Boy was pulling 20 or so bulk carrier cars.

All along the tracks were clusters of die hard steamer fans. Not like the trip last month but probably in the hundreds altogether.

At Pine Bluffs, curbed my usual smart ass response to stimulus. At the Sinclair gas station a cluster of older motorcyclists with Marine Corps club vests were next to where I pulled in. Several had rank insignias, one an E-8. I needed to pee so refrained from making Jarhead comments. When I came out, they had departed. Just as well. As my sister points out, I don’t move as fast now as in my younger years.

Some random observations.

 Many of the GM products seen had only one functioning daylight running light.

The further out in the sticks, the greater the difference in cattle behavior from scattered in the pastures near town to tight herds with the babies in the middle and the mamas on the outside in the wide open prairie. Coyotes.

Lots of green. The grass along the highway shoulders is waist high and the state is busy mowing.

Saw one severely neglected property. One pasture was loaded with more tansy than I recall seeing. A pretty flower in a garden, tansy is poisonous to livestock and crowds out desirable forage.  Once heard a rancher describing a new neighbor as, “Keeps his fences fixed, his tansy picked, and does more than his share on the ditch committee”. Good neighbor.

Lots of petroleum development with new pipeline construction. Saw two gas facilities with flare stacks going. Gasp! Carbon pollution.

The Midwest tour schedule is here.


The return is August7/8. An overnight stop in Sydney is scheduled on the 7th and on to Cheyenne  the 8th.  I plan to be there. Sydney is about 135 miles and 2+ hours driving time. Plus, the original Cabella store is there. Bass Pro Shop now owns Cabella and is closing the distribution center in Sydney. My understanding is the store will remain open. I’ve always found something to warm my cheap ass heart in their Bargain Cave.

ADDENDUM. 

Found on YouTube. In the distance beyond the grain elevators is a silver painted signal tower. I'm using it as a brace.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0VTNL9s5Fc


Monday, July 8, 2019

Lightning

Church, 2 miles from my apartment, hit by lightning and set on fire. Services were underway when it hit. No one was injured.

Last night we had cloud to cloud lightning and the sound of thunder went on and on.

I blame all the wind farms for disturbing the normal airflow. Hey, as "scientific" as most of the climate change bullshit.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Off To The Races

My sister, the insurance adjuster, was a guest of the July 5th race sponsor and dragged me along.
We had great seats and amenities but not a great place for taking pictures, hence none of my very amateur snaps.
We were sitting in front of the Beer Garden. 

Fun to watch races until lightning starting cracking around the venue and the spectators were asked to leave the metal bleachers. Racing was to resume but Sisty and I elected to leave. Right and proper thunderstorm hit as we were exiting and Sisty had her wipers going full blast.

Headed North just a sunset (which lasts for awhile at our latitude) we were enthralled by the colors breaking out around the various cloud formations. Once again, a privilege to live in Colorado.

We suffered the tradition of the crackling public address system as the Anthem was sung. Must be a law.

Over the years I've enjoyed watching small venue car racing and don't know why I stopped going. May change that.

Good news! No lightning strike deaths or tornadoes from the thunderstorms in the area. Further East towards Kansas there was some flooding. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Barf Days

Suddenly the Democrats are ranting about the “deplorable conditions” detained illegal, repeat illegal, immigrants face in custody. Questions?

1.  Who invited them.

2.  Why is it our obligation, as a country, to provide Holiday Inn Express level accommodations to those breaking our laws.

3.  Who stopped the flow of money to the agencies responsible for housing these illegals .

4.  Who created a situation where the managers of these facilities have been forced to spend funds allocated for other purposes to keep even a modicum of safe holding conditions.  The same managers theoretically face charges of breaking laws by moving these funds.

5.  Who believes these Democrats give a rat’s ass about the “plight” of these illegals beyond providing television sound bites.

The Democrats fight any kind of immigration reform.  Why? It might help President Trump. He along has showed a wiliness to tackle really tough problems. Witness prison reform at the federal level that he has pushed through.  He is perfectly willing to tackle immigration.

President Trump is hated because he is an outsider, and doesn’t give a flying fuck about all the carefully constructed norms of the swampers. Want a small but telling example? His 2018 White House budget was $22 million less than the preceding year. The First Lady has a staff of four. Lots of rice bowls being threatened.

Readers of this blog know I don’t like him on a personal level which means jack shit compared to his performance as President. Over the years I’ve work for, and with, many individuals I loathed personally but admired their ability to perform their jobs. (Surprisingly, some of them didn’t like me!)

My hope is these (P)regressive Democrats mouth’s have overloaded their asses and voters will send them packing in 2020.

YMMV

ADDENDUM: Swiped from a FB posting.


No one mentions that illegals are free to

 leave detention centers anytime to go back

to mexico. They aren't our prisoners.




Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Simple Pleasures


A big thunderstorm rolled over the WSF’s senior slum building last night. At times, counting the time between lightning flashes and the thunder sound was “one one thou……”. No hail, but buckets of rain.

DrJim lives about 20 miles NNW of me and reported only sprinkles.


After the cell passed, I opened all exterior doors and windows and let the fresh washed air circulate (aided by two ceiling fans) in the apartment. A simple pleasure to be sure, but I enjoy it.

As I get older I take these moments whenever I can.

Depending on the source, Colorado is #4 or #5 in lightning kills nationwide. My mother was struck twice. Her sisters never developed dementia but she did. No proof that being struck by lightning was the cause, and no proof it wasn’t.

My sister lost a valuable American Saddle Bred horse to lightning. He was a superb jumper.

Gaia has her ways, and mere humans won’t change that.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Airport Day


There is no airline service at our local airport but studies show the economic impact on the area exceeds $83 million a year. Today was a 75th Anniversary Day.




I question the timing as we are in the middle of the Greeley Stampede, a five day rodeo event and I found traffic at the airport fairly sparse.

The event has two separate areas. The “Learn to Fly” portion sponsored by the EAA and our local community college drew a crowd.


The Commemorative Air Force drew little. Doubt they made back their gas money to get here. I have no personal interest in a low level flight on a hot afternoon but did drop a donation in their bucket.








I have an interest in Light Sport Aircraft of which there were two examples.  The Kit Fox owner was willing to talk, and I found him interesting. The plane has full span flaps which are also the ailerons. When I asked him about roll rate he indicated it will roll quickly and keep on rolling.


Much of my early time building was out of this hanger then owned by Dirty Dick Nolan. He advertised in Trade-A-Plane, “Dick Nolan has $2,000,000 – buys airplanes over the telephone”.  He would finance anyone with a down payment. Since his financing was full recourse, he spent a lot of time re-possessing airplanes. In those days the hanger was isolated.


The Globe Swift brought back a memory. I delivered one and was most fortunate to only land it three times, twice for fuel. It was a ground loop just waiting to happen, but fun in the air.


Think some of our bloggers might buy one of these T-Shirts?



Friday, June 28, 2019

Bambi (and cousins)


A cousin operates a Wyoming hot shot freight service. He wore out one Dodge Dually at 432,000+ miles. He has had his share of wildlife encounters and shared this.


For those not familiar with the term, hot shot, a shipper has something that needs to go from point A to point B RIGHT NOW. Often an operation costing $10s of thousands per hour is stopped for lack of a vital part. Call a freight forwarder specialist who can get it transported as fast as possible.


A notorious stretch of highway for wild animal encounters is Colorado Highway 13 from Rifle, CO through Meeker, Craig, and on to Baggs, WY. My cousin had an encounter with a elk one night just South of Baggs.

Back in the day when I was running off site car sales, we had two car haulers we owned and operated. One night between Meeker and Rifle our driver hit a deer. The owner and general manager were making noises about making the driver pay for the damages.  Closing the office door, I gave them a short, unpleasant, lecture. Pointed out  he could have tried to swerve an 80,000 lb truck/trailer combination and rolled it and the ten cars aboard off the hillside.

 They weren’t thrilled having the Tank tell them what trees made shingles but nothing more was said about charging the driver.

Over the years I’ve hit three deer and had many other close calls. I understand in the Southland feral pigs are a big problem. That is a lot of compact meat on hoof from the few I’ve seen.

Drive safe out there!

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

A Change of Pace


I’m a meat eater, beef and pork, with occasional chicken. Not much on fish but am examining dietary choices with a goal of weight loss and health improvement.

Tonight I will be cooking cod, which I haven’t eaten in ages.

 We, no matter our age, are influenced by our childhood diet.  My mother dearly loved salted cod which she bought in wooden boxes. Surprisingly, to me, you can still buy it that way. I was not a fan. Being a sheep rancher’s daughter, she was big on boiled mutton. I’ll eat it to be polite but mutton and lamb don’t make it over my threshold.

My mother loathed fowl and wouldn’t eat any, period! On occasions she would prepare it for the rest of the family.

For a large portion of my youth, we were poachers and mainly ate venison, elk, trout, and the occasional rabbit. My father and I refused to eat liver. In spite, my sister eats liver and onions.

Thanks to the internet, recipes are easy to find. The one I will try is a lemon/parsley seasoned baked cod.

A final note. If the package doesn’t say wild caught, I won’t buy it. I’m deeply suspicious of farmed fish.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Viper


Tripping down memory lane, prompted by a picture of a Dodge Viper, prompts a post when I allowed my inner asshole persona free range.

1992 found me working in a Dodge store on the East side of Seattle. I was hired while the General Manager was on vacation. Turned out, he didn’t like me any better than I liked him but nobody in the store could sell trucks better than me.

Yeah, the mighty Cummins!

Weird to see that wee 4 cylinder in a St. Regis cop car chassis with a pickup body.  Dakota, they called it.

 We were next to a Toyota store whose manager complained to my manager about me poaching customers off the Toyota lot. Toyota had just brought out the T-100, a wretched excuse for a truck, and I would politely suggest to their customers they step next door and see real trucks, for less money, with better warranties, etc.


(Think the T-100 wasn’t a turd. Toyota had $4,000 per truck in hidden rebates to their dealers to move them)

So on to the Viper. The dealership got one, and only one, of the first batch.  Our work schedule gave us one weekend a month off. The manager put up a spiff. Top salesman/saleswoman for the month got the Viper for a weekend. You can guess where this is going.

Yep, the Tankster was top by three units and some $8,000 in gross profit. Plus, four of the seven leases that month.  The GM was shitting bricks.

Came the weekend off, I arrived that Saturday morning ready to rumble. The GM worked himself into a sorry state trying to tell me to be careful, etc.

Took off, drove on I-90 to the top of Snoqualmie Pass, and returned to the dealership about an hour later. Parked the Viper, put the keys away, and said, “What’s the big deal? It’s just a fucking car”.

A few days later kissed and made up with the folks at the Ford store I had been working at.  Heard later the owner of the store had some harsh words with the GM about losing the top dog for three months running. Oh, well.

A word about assholes. They come in two varieties, usually. They are competent, or incompetent. The first are driven to succeed. The second are driven to save their own asses. I seldom had a problem working for a competent asshole. We understood each other. Neither of us was there for any reason other than dollars in the pocket (legally, mind you) and anything/anyone interfering with that effort got hammered.

Want an outstanding example? Well, you have no choice if you continue reading. President Trump. The man is a gold plated asshole with a backbone of steel. He gets things done. May be kind to children and pets but work for him and you will produce, or you will be gone. I like that.

That Viper? Maybe the most awesome wheels I ever had the privilege to drive.