"You gonna get another job?"...

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If you ever want to feel like someone's doing you a huge favor at great inconvenience to them, ask a fairly senior union employee to do their job sometime. Working tonight and on the final break I realize I have a little less than 3 boxes of a part I need for my job. I'm filling in for someone so I haven't taken the time to figure out how long it takes me to go through a box of said part, but I'm cutting it close enough that I tell the guy I'm working for. He says "I'll call it in, but it's the end of the shift so they'll probably tell us to make do."

And that's what I'm expecting as I'm about 40% of the way through my supply of parts. But the guy shows up with more parts. And of course he says something like "I'm going to let 1st shift think I restocked for them," before asking if there's anything else I need and telling me he's going home for the weekend.
 

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The "what I should'a said..." that occurs minutes/hours/days later. The guy who's threatened by me talking to the hot girl (and just for understanding, we're talking 5'6' black girl, fit tight body, long straight hair, tasteful tattoos to include a coiled snake right between her shoulder blades. Dresses like she's going to a disco in 1981--flimsy tight black polyester pants with a matching halter top with no bra) Anyway, when I first met her, I was about to lift something like 1600 dishwasher doors and set them onto their chassis so I mentioned maybe I shouldn't have spent the day splitting wood. We talked about my house and why I was splitting wood (when a 1 acre property has been a rental for 20 years, there's a fair amount of deadwood attracting termites and carpenter ants). The next time she saw me she asked about splitting wood and somehow I got to talking about the chainsaw so my rival pops over and makes some kind of jab about a sex dungeon (disposing of bodies, etc). I, of course, choke up, but I really should've said that I was offended by his implications because I have the absolutely classiest and most tasteful sex dungeon in the city.

The downside is that she could take me seriously and be horrified. The upsides are that she could think I was joking, she could ask for clarification and I could admit I was joking, or she could actually be *into* sex dungeons. So really, although the guy was trying to kneecap me, he really gave me far more angles that I could work for relatively low risk than if I were just left to yammer about the vagaries of clearing brush to a hot young girl.
 

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.... An officer absolutely could not date enlisted. You were also supposed to stick within your "class": lieutenants and captains can date, majors and lieutenant colonels can date--but not if they are in a direct chain of command. There's always a scarcity of female Marine officers and the smart ones know not to date anyone they work with because of all the competition etc that it will generate. ...
I forgot to mention that this was on my mind in light of the Gates' divorce. Bill met Melinda when she was his employee. And apparently this was a thing for him even after they were married. https://www.foxbusiness.com/business-leaders/bill-gates-marriage-to-melinda-report . Bill Clinton and his intern. You name it. Anywhere else, it's apparently fine for you to date someone who works for you. Of course it clearly backfires on many occasions. But still...pussy.
 

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This was going to be a Facebook post, but I was realizing how long it could get. The Plan today was to paint the garage white and then move on to painting trim on all the buildings grey. But I got up a little late. Then I decided to do some "chip away at the stone" chores: burn some brush, chop a few hunks off the tree stump, and chop down weeds as I reclaim the pasture. By the time I was done I was exhausted and a half hour late for lunch.

Then I realized I was supposed to do some bookkeeping too. Eventually I was ready to paint. I really should've scrubbed the stuff I was painting, but I figured "screw it, if it takes, it takes, if it doesn't, I'll just paint it next year and do it right." But then I couldn't find my paint. Had I accidentally bought interior paint instead of exterior? I did find some Killz that was unused on another project. Was it oil-based or latex? Got my glasses so I could see the fine print. "Cleanup with soap and water." Aces. Latex. Unfortunately I also read the instructions. Basically, "clean the shit out of anything you're going to be painting." Well hell, if Killz, which is *designed* to hide stains and cover mold says to clean, I guess I'd better clean. Oh, and at this point I remembered that I'd just left the exterior paint in the shed, since it wouldn't be freezing before I used it. (A few years ago I learned that freezing temperatures ruin latex paint.)

So I got out my 3 gallon bucket, added a cup of bleach and a half cup of TSP to hot water, grabbed a sponge kitchen mop and got to work. Since I needed to clean moss and crud off the vinyl siding on the north side of the house, and that was cleaner than the garage I wanted to paint, I decided to tackle that first. If you ever want to see how dirty Life is, clean something white that doesn't get cleaned often and that you think is fairly clean. Ugh. By the time I was done, I had to dump the water and refill before tackling the garage.

In the Marine Corps, doctrine is to assault 10-15 meters through your objective. No one has explained the reasoning of this but I'm convinced that it is simply because human nature makes you want to quit at 95%. You can get away with that when washing a wall or something. Attacking dug-in machineguns, not so much. And boy did I want to quit before I was done. I had to stand back a few times to see how much better it looked than when I started. I should do some work on the TARDIS too, but I really should do some fiberglass work on that and I don't have any fiberglass or resin so I may just paint tomorrow--like I planned to today.

As a sidebar, I'm still mulling the best order to paint. I probably should move back inside, finish caulking and clean up drywall in the bathroom and then finish painting the bathroom and paint interior doors. But I'd kind of like to do outside painting. For that I need to paint the garage first because you paint walls before you paint trim so I can just do all the trim at once. But then I've got a tin "yard barn" so that will require oil based Rust-O-Leum, with the messy cleanup that entails. That's why I feel like I should do the interior stuff first.
 

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I can freakin' SEE retirement from here. But I'm not there yet. It's like that last .2 mile in a marathon. Lazy me argues that I could retire RIGHT NOW, but there's definitely no margin for error then. So The Plan is to work at my current job until at least August (so I've been there a year), and use the job to qualify for a VA loan on my current (free and clear) house and use that money to buy another rental property. BUT...(and here it gets a little like those old Choose-your-own-adventure books of my childhood)
1) My friend from college offered me a consulting gig with his company. I'm not qualified for it, but I wasn't really qualified for the last thing he hired me for and they were happy with me that time. Besides, I'm 70% sure it is because he hates his job and wants someone on payroll that he can call to bitch about it on the clock. Apparently I'll be able to do this while keeping my other part time job.
2) As a Catholic, I will pray to St. Jude, the patron saint of lost causes and miracles. And when life goes my way I'll send some money to the St. Jude Children's Hospital. I'm about 2 pretty fat checks behind but I was worried about how little cash I had on hand so I delayed (and it was lucky I did, apparently), but things are finally to the point where I can start catching up. Although, if you'll remember, I still need one more house to complete my retirement Plan. So imagine my surprise when, the day after I said "time to cut a check to St. Jude," they sent me a letter saying that they were raffling off a house in Louisville and you get 1 chance for every $100.
3) I'm just about done with Phase One of fixing up the neglected rental property I moved into. Oh, there's plenty more I want to do, but I'm getting to where it is cozy and habitable. So I really should be looking for another rental and lining up the money to buy it. BUT...if I donate to St. Jude, then I might get a house for FREE. (coincidentally, one valued at the remainder of the amount I want in the bank when I retire for reals (my current "retire" is where I can stop punching a clock but still need rental income). This house is more house than I know what to do with, but hey, I could sell it, buy a house I can handle, and stick the rest in my IRA.) The point is, if I've got skin in the game on this house raffle, that gives me an excuse to NOT buy another rental and I can keep on cozying up this place instead. Stainless gas range, extra bedroom, secret door to the bedroom, TARDIS/sex dungeon basement, etc.

So I guess yeah, life is good. I guess. I need a girl. And/or a dog. But I'm holding off a year on the dog (or until I'm retired). I guess I should focus on the girl thing. I could do the OKCupid thing. Or there's a sex doll that looks like a bargain at the list price. Or I could split the difference and get an 18 year old Ukrainian mail-order bride. Because this is Kentucky, I could, conceivably get a 16 year old Ukrainian mail-order bride, but there's a line in the law that says age of consent is 18 if there's some kind of power relationship involved. Which is kind of ironic, because...it's a catch-22: You can legally get a 16 year old to have sex with, but if you're able to get a 16 year old to have sex with, then you can't legally have sex with her.

Anyways, the more I type it, the more I can't avoid that it would be creepy as hell. And probably frustrating anyway. What do you DO with a 16 year old when you're not having sex with her? Shit, I'd have to take all the boxes and stuff out of the dog kennel in the basement.
 

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Seriously. So I moved 3 blocks from a school. This means if I pull out of the driveway before 2:45, I will be 10 minutes early for work. If I pull out onto the road after 2:45, I'll be late for work. It takes 10 minutes to drive 3 blocks once school is out.

And they were very clear and have a good reason. It's an assembly line. No one can work if they don't have enough people to staff all the positions. So you get docked "points" like on your driver's license if you're late. You clock in 5 seconds after your start time and you might as well just wait a half hour. It's 1/2 point either way. Since moving, I've got something like 1 1/2 points. The last time I was going to be late I called in to the automated line and was docked 1/2 point anyhow. So the next time it was going to be close I just decided to skip monkeying with my phone while driving since I was going to lose the 1/2 point anyway.

Well today the guy I work for needed my last name. Then later in the night I had to go to the Principal's Office. Well, the boss over the guy I work for. I mean, not officially the guy I work for. I've seen that guy a total of maybe 3 minutes since I started in August. Apparently if you don't call in and you're 2 minutes late there's another 1/2 point penalty. And you have to sign a warning letter that will go down in your Permanent Record. :/

I've done some pretty great stuff for this company. I've been told I was getting a raise not long after starting. One time, when a pneumatic press went down I kept the line going by basically performing CPR to seat a pump in a part. I was supposed to get a bonus for that. But when I moved and found out HR wouldn't actually change my address--I had to log into the system and do it myself--they're too busy sitting around doing nothing--I checked on stuff. I mean, I knew I hadn't gotten the raise. Or the bonus. But no kind of positive notation at all. Big companies are real good at beating you with a stick but not so good at patting you on the back. So yeah, I'm ramping up my effort to stop punching a clock.
 

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Yep. And then the clean-up at the end. Even if you're not working with oil paints, it sucks. Then there's masking/cutting. I've gotten to the point where I rarely mask something when I'm painting. For walls, ceilings, and baseboards I've got this kind of pad. It's maybe 4x6 with a fabric surface and little rubber rollers on one edge. It doesn't do perfect edging, but it looks almost as nice as if you took the time to tape everything. I've also gotten a lot better at "cutting in" with a brush. I'm not good enough at it that I'd be comfortable charging someone to paint for them, but I'm good enough at it that I can do it instead of masking a lot of the time. Only problem is, I'm also not good enough that I can do it instinctively. It really takes me a lot of concentration and is quite mentally tiring for me to do. I had trim for 4 porch windows and the front door to paint. I was too tired and it was too dark to do them with all the rest of the painting so I had to get them the next day and when I started I was like "this is easy and I'm so good at it," but by the time I was done I was pretty tired and making more mistakes than I should've.
 

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Had something relevant so before I get to that, I'll just mention that my dog's death is still very painful to me. Of course it doesn't help that I'm finishing up a couple books I'm reading, I finally saw the end of "How I Met Your Mother" and in the broadcast version, the story of the Mother is incredibly sad, and the remodeling is winding down. So I'm in a kind of "endings" mood.

Supposed to be doing some consulting for my friend again. Not really looking forward to it, but the money's good and it's a relatively short gig.

But the reason I posted is because I'm doing my bookkeeping for the week. It's going OK. But just to double-check my work, I looked at the balance from the ATM receipt and there's a $2,000 discrepancy. There's $2,000 more there than there should be. Did the knuckleheads give me money from my security deposit account the last time I did an owner capital draw? After shuffling paperwork back and forth and sweating for at least 5 minutes, I realized: At the time I got the ATM receipt I also deposited a check from my LLC to my personal account. So the computer isn't going to know about that. Duh.
 

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I'm realizing dogs allegedly trigger oxycontin release too, so if that's true there is a physical chemical reaction going on over my dog's death too.

But that's not what I was going to say. Ordinarily I wouldn't talk money specifics, but for the purposes of this story, it is relevant. I'm about halfway to my original retirement goal. I revised that goal when I rented out my first house. A rule of thumb for screening tenants is that they need income equal to 3 times the rent. I throized that, by that standard, if I only bought houses that I'd want to live in and charged a fair amount of rent for them, I only needed 3 rental houses to give me enough income to satisfy my needs. One could argue that I only need 2, since I'm already living in a house I own so I don't need the 1/3 of income that would go to rent, but a buffer is nice. Add to that, if you only have 3 rentals, you aren't bound by Equal Housing laws. I mean, it's just good business to follow them, but if push came to shove and the enforcement people tried to trip me up by pretending to be disabled or something (no kidding, heard of a guy who got a big fine, like $10-15K, because a ringer with a walker asked to see "all" his open apartments and he didn't show one that was on the second floor because he assumed they wouldn't want to deal with the steps) I can say "sorry, but I'm not obligated to follow Equal Housing laws. :) "

The problem is, the price of houses has been going up faster than I can keep up. So this summer I bought a house that wouldn't be a good rental because the price was right and there are income opportunities tied to it (vehicle storage) and moved there, rented my place out, and started fixing it up. But that still leaves me 1 house short of my (revised) plan.

Now I need to backtrack a bit. I'm Catholic. Catholics have patron saints. Patron saint of lost items, patron saint of travelers, patron saint of military, patron saint of hopeless cases, patron saint of animals, etc, etc, etc. The patron saint of hopeless cases is St. Jude. Now, when Danny Thomas was starting out in show business, he prayed to St. Jude to be successful and promised that he'd build a hospital in St. Jude's name if he was. He was and started the St. Jude Children's Hospital for kids with cancer. I can't remember what, all those years ago, I prayed to St. Jude for, but I guess I got it, because I wrote a check to the St. Jude Hospital and now I'm on their mailing list. If you ever need some mailing address labels, send a few bucks to the St. Jude Hospital, because they'll send you mailing labels and scratch paper pads about 4 times a year in an attempt to guilt you into donating more money.

So apart from the dog dying (and 11-12 years isn't an unreasonable lifespan for a dog as active as she was who is half Lab), things have been going pretty well. I held off on donating because money was tight (and it's good that I did between the cost of the roof and the unexpected sewer install expense) but after tax time it was looking like I had a little money to catch up a bit so I planned to send them a check. Well the morning after I made that decision, I got a mailer from St. Jude that they were raffling off a "dream home" in Louisville. If I won it that would give me my 3 rental properties, although it is a lot fancier than the homes I'd buy. And here's the icing on the cake: If I won it, the value of the home is exactly the amount I'd need to retire by my initial plan. I realize the odds are against me winning it, but given that St. Jude is the patron saint of the impossible and given how things just seem to fall together, I will be very very happy, but not incredibly surprised if I wind up winning it. But if I don't, that's fine too. There's an old fisherman's proverb I've heard that goes something like: "When you're caught in a storm at sea, pray to God. But keep rowing towards shore." We'll see.
 

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Ugh. Warm and humid tonight. Would desperately like a shower but... I just finished the final bits of the bathroom remodel (except for one little bit of plaster patching in one little corner that I forgot and will have to hit tomorrow. And given the aforementioned humidity, I'd rather not add to the humidity until I've given the paint 24 hours to dry. Or at least overnight.

Problem is, I was also working on the bathroom yesterday. So I just feel greasy and horrible. I think I'm going to at least go at it with a washcloth to cut some of the ick factor.
 

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This is the most on-topic post I've made in this thread in awhile. Sorry that it will likely ramble. Year and a half ago my friend from college hired me to do work from home project management on the corporate split of the huge international company he worked in accounting for. I didn't really want to do it and tried to talk him out of it, but he was adamant. Since he is a good friend and what I had lined up wasn't a sure thing, I agreed. I was really more of a project coordinator, but they got the split done fairly smoothly and were happy with my contribution. I know basic accounting. I do the accounting for my business, but I couldn't even comprehend the chart of accounts for a company of that size. I'd sit in on conference calls where they'd be trying to figure out where money was going and be totally lost. I did rely heavily on my friend and the people on his team--2 of them in particular.

Awhile back he wanted me to come in to cover for 1 of those 2 while she was on maternity leave. Since I'd depended so heavily on her, and what she did was much more technical than what I did on the last project I objected even more strongly. Luckily, the person they'd planned to have cover (but was hedging) stepped up and I got let off the hook. Well now he needs someone to do some short term part time work on some enterprise databases. Given that I'm trying to *stop* working, not work more and given that I've tried several times to learn Microsoft Access and it (along with Google Sketchup) is one of the few programs I was never able to learn, I initially refused. I offered to set him up with another project manager I know. But as I got to chatting with her, the more I thought it through, the more I realized I owed it to my friend to help him out if he wanted me. Besides, it was relatively short duration and for large piles of money, I called him back and said I'd do it.

Truth be told, I was hoping he wouldn't get the money approved for it, but he did and I'm officially starting Monday--although my laptop hasn't showed up yet, so I may get a temporary reprieve. Today I'm supposed to read up on the databases as well as watch an 8 hour YouTube video he sent me (not on the clock, of course, he hired me under the premise that I actually know what I'm doing) and I really don't want to work with databases over the summer. What I want to do is frame up and drywall a divider in my back dining(?) room. Right now I've got a 2 bedroom house but the back was added on and it really isn't defined. The back door used to open into the kitchen (with a tacked on little bathroom just to the right of the back door). When they extended the house they shot the basement steps down behind the bathroom (just building more house around the little bathroom) with the new back door opposite the door to the basement. Since there really wasn't anything to do with the space to the left of the basement steps, they put another door there and stuck a long narrow closet along the other side of the basement steps. (so there's a "C" shaped group of 3 doors. Looking at the closet door, the basement door is on your right and the back door is on your left. And behind you is a big open room with the bathroom door and the doorway to the kitchen. That's why I say it's supposed to be a dining room. It's either a dining room or a second living room. But who needs 2 living rooms in a 2br/1bath 1,000sf house?

Who needs a dining room, for that matter? Yes, if I had a big family, I would. The table in the center of the kitchen comfortably seats 2, maybe 4. But on the other hand, how are more than 4 people going to live in a 2br house? I suppose for holidays and entertaining, it might make sense. And times have changed. My aunt's house that was built in the early 1970s only has 2 bedrooms and has a small dining area (as well as a second living space up on the top floor, but that's beside the point. The point is that I can frame in a hallway without much trouble and now I've got a 3br house (which is worth a lot more than a 2br house--both for sale or as a rental--say 25% more). Now I do have concerns that it will make the space claustrophobic, so I'm planning to put a pair of 36" sliding doors on it for access. It will also need a very basic closet. Technically, by building code, a bedroom doesn't need a closet, but most people--and even a lot of actual licensed Realtors think you can't call it a bedroom without a closet. The Plan is to tuck a little closet in a corner but actually stick a nice old looking wardrobe in the room. I also plan to add an electrical outlet on a wall that inexplicably lacks one and put an electric fireplace there.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Electric outlets and furniture--even doors--can happen later, along with a stainless gas range for the kitchen. For now I just want to get the room put in so I can finally paint that last bit of the interior. Shouldn't take me terribly long--a month leaves a safe margin--but I don't have a month. And I won't have any time for several months now. Because I agreed to do this stupid job. And since my friend is on Facebook, I can't just pretend I've died. I'd have to screw him over and back out after he got everything lined up. Ah well. Such is life. Sometimes you have to do things you don't want to do.

Which reminds me of an analogy from a job awhile back. I was technically a supervisor, but if we were shorthanded, us supervisors would wind up jumping in and working. I always said it was like being the receptionist for a porn company: "Bad news, Jenny. We're all set up to shoot and the girl we had lined up for 'Anal Gangbang Sluts 17' no-call/no-showed. Strip down, get lubed up, and get over to the studio. We start shooting in 30 minutes."
 

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Just got a call from my friend, asking me my shipping address. So that means my computer won't be showing up for at least another day. So I can study up on the databases I'll be using.

Or fuck off on the Internet and tackle some household chores. Either one.
 

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So tired. I knew the one YouTube video was 8 hours. I has hoping the other one would be text. Because I can learn a lot more and a lot faster by reading. And if I missed something, or need more time on it, it's a lot easier and faster to just go back on text. I can highlight and make notes. But no. Listen to someone drone on while zipping through screen demos. And the other video is slightly less than 3 hours long. I mean, the software looks slick. And if I were interested in getting involved in a career in data analysis at the enterprise level, this stuff would be gold, but this is just a gig I'm doing as a favor to a friend for a few months. This post brought to you because I needed to take a shower before continuing the slog but my cat has become obsessed with running water in the toilet and wouldn't get out of the bathroom until I flushed it for her and let her have a drink.

So yeah, the cat is probably dying too. She was diagnosed with kidney problems and given a special expensive cat food. Then, a few months ago she started having problems with it--puking it up, diarrhea... So I just went with something she'd eat. But increasingly, she won't eat any dry food and is getting a bit fussy about what canned food she'll eat. So I worry.
 

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I'm halfway through this goddamn 3 hour video [to the tune of "Gilligan's Island": "A three hour video"] and I just want to know what we've covered and what is still left to cover and if everything will be pulled together at some point. If it was a book or a slide deck, I could flip to the beginning and look at the overview quickly and easily. It isn't terribly hard with a video, but it IS *harder*. It is the equivalent of finding a song you want to hear on a CD versus finding it on a tape.

So I'm listening to this thing of how you can concatenate V-strings to blahblahblah and thinking about the cool wardrobe I saw on CraigsList for $100 an hour away and the $350 Home Depot.com sleeper sofa that would be great for the bedroom I haven't built yet. Fuck, doing a favor for an old friend taken out of the equation, I just need to learn to get buttloads of money from people to stage/decorate homes. Because I actually enjoy that.
 

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So. Tired. You don't realize how exhausting really *thinking* and concentrating is until you have to do it for an extended period of time. A little over 4 hours into the 7.5 hour video and the big takeaway is that the software can do a lot of really cool stuff and has a fairly user-friendly interface. But could I tell you how to do 97% of the things I've watched? No, I could not. And the laptop showed up this afternoon, so I guess I'd better finish this thing tonight.

I've got my night job Friday. Friday morning the AC guy will be here. I suspect I'm low on freon because everything works and the filter looks clean, but it doesn't actually cool. Before that I get to drop The Cat off at the vet. She had kidney problems diagnosed a little over a year ago and was on a special diet. Last fall the special food started making her throw up and giving her diarrhea if she did manage to keep it down, so I went back to something else. In the past week or two she's only been willing to eat canned food and has been obsessed with fresh water (i.e. the toilet flushing). Last night she decided ice cubes in her water bowl were pretty great. The past few days she's taken to laying behind the couch instead of up on the back of it and today she doesn't even seem interested in water. It seems like when household pets start to go downhill, it's pretty fast and dramatic. Of course part of the problem is how well cats hide discomfort. And she's a very furry cat, so by the time I noticed she seems to be losing muscle mass, it's pretty far along.

I'll be bummed if her time is up soon, but as cold as it sounds, I won't be as absolutely devastated as I was over The Dog. Even an affectionate cat can't communicate love and devotion to you the way a good dog can. Which is good, because I don't think I could stand going through that again so soon. I can only manage about 1 death every 10 years.
 

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"'E's not to leave the room until I come and get 'im." "*Not* to leave the room, even if you come and get him." "...No, no, UNTIL I come and get 'im."

The old Monty Python & the Holy Grail bit.

Yesterday--this morning, I guess, at 1am, I finished up my 11 hours of YouTube database manipulations. It took awhile because, and I mentioned, the laptop showed up, so I felt obligated to let my friend know this at something close to a reasonable hour. He immediately wanted me to fire it up and get on the network. This annoyed me a little because I'd really rather have focused on getting the training done and open up the box today. Turned out it was a good idea, because I wasn't able to get on the VPN. Getting an error message about "not having the appropriate security, contact your administrator" or words to that effect. After basic troubleshooting, my friend gave me the 1-800 tech support number. A few minutes on the phone with them revealed that my account had not been set up with permission to access the network via VPN. :/

Now first off, I should mention that IT almost sent the computer off without any of the software I'd been hired to work with installed on it. Luckily my friend caught that. But apparently it didn't occur to the IT people in Wisconsin that were sending a laptop to a house in Kentucky that the user might need to get on the VPN to work. So now there's a ticket open and I wait until I'm able to get on the network and actually work. So, boring renovation stuff:

The next big project I want to tackle is putting a divider in the "dining room" to turn it into a hallway and a bedroom. It won't be load-bearing, so it'll get framed up with 2x2s. Zap on some drywall, tape and spackle it, slap on baseboards, paint and I'll have increased the value of the house by 20-25% by turning it from a 2 to a 3 bedroom. Well, I will have once I've got the door on. It looks like it should work, but I'm still a little worried that it will make the space too cramped and claustrophobic so I'm planning to put double 36" doors on sliders--a "barn door" or similar setup. Then I can leave the doors open most of the time, giving me around 40% the same feel as before the wall goes in. But that isn't an insignificant project. And it will require a trip to the hardware store with The Van. Even if I had the time, it's been quite moist and The Van doesn't do well in rain (33 year old door gaskets and all).

Oh, there are lots of projects I could do. I've still got 2 pallets in the basement with stuff I haven't put away yet. I could paint the roof of the tin yard barn. I could get started on painting the side of the hallway-to-be that currently exists. Or the existing walls of the bedroom-to-be. I guess I already was outside, attacking the weeds and brush to reclaim the pasture. I've got that about 75% cleared at this point. Hell, I could do office work. There's plenty of neglected letters to write and calls to make. But I'm tempted to just screw off and maybe take a nap. In my defense, working outside with an "idiot stick" for an hour or so in this heat and humidity was a respectable amount of work for the day, but I really should keep things moving. But I'm kinda leaning towards taking a nap and screwing off all day. I dunno. We'll see.
 

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And after lunch the HVAC people said they had a cancellation so they could look at the AC today. First it looked like it might just be a $250 capacitor. But some readings were funny when everything was up and running, so an internal condenser/heat sink needed cleaning. But that didn't fix it, so it was going to need coolant. Unfortunately, at that point it was still wonky and a call to someone more experienced (and I actually know and trust the guy they sent) pointed to a bad compressor. So the repair went from $250 to $2,500 in a relatively short time. At that point you're about 2/3 of the way to the cost of just ripping out the unit and putting a new one in that has a 1 year guarantee. After a few minutes of agonizing over it, I pulled the trigger. But they can't do an install for another week. So I won't find out if the warm temperatures are the reason The Cat has been behaving funny.

Anyway, that out of the way, I decided it was time for a nap. After the nap, a big expense I'd hoped to avoid affects other forward-looking plans. And a nice downpour affects doing anything outside. :/
 
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