Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Time to Grow..


OK. What I do is fun, you get high without realizing it, and not many people bother you. There are birds chirping, flowers blooming, and the general ambiance of the work place is like a very peaceful rest home with no one around.

However, if I am to make enough money to keep alive in the future, collect trophies of various types, and achieve the freedom I seek, I must do more with my life.

If you were any kind of friends you'd suggest directions I could take which would yield satisfaction, a fortune, and generally soothe my restless soul. In what way could I employ my many unidentifiable talents toward this end?

Winning suggestion gets 9.2% of my future net profit for three (yes, 3!!) years.

Out in East County

Here's a sample of the sort of emails you get in this neighborhood:

subject: rattlesnake vaccinations

For those neighbors who had th first of two rattlesnake vaccines for your dog at the fork in the road, we’ll be able to administer #2 of the vaccine on Saturday, July 3 at 8am at the fork in the road. The vet who was due to be here two weeks ago has had a family emergency, but he has passed the serum on to Lori ...

It goes on to explain that the vet who shot up the dogs last time and can't make it, passed the dope on to Lori* and some chick* who is a veterinarian tech student who will be able to do the job. At The Fork In The Road, of course. That is where the long dirt road which winds its way up here by means of several switchbacks divides into two parts; the one which goes straight and the one that curves left past my abode.

*It is assumed that everyone knows Lori and the other dame. I have no idea who they are. I'm not part of the inner circle and the cool clique here, obviously

My question is this: If dogs can get a vaccine ahead of time, why can't humans? and..what would be the side effects? If it is merely slurred speech, I can see why dogs wouldn't care. I bet they shouldn't operate heavy machinery.

I've seen several flyers out this way, at the Descanso post office, and in Alpine, for classes to teach your dog not to play with rattlesnakes. I feel ignorant. No one taught me anything about how to be rattler savvy. Between bears and rattlesnakes, I'm wondering if I should be re-thinking this life as Western Man.

So, if one brings me coffee can we be friends?

Saturday, June 26, 2010

In California, Anything is Possible

The figure below is life size, at least. That is assuming a man with a bull's head would still be the same size. I think it may be a statue of one of the people who employ me. The one I've never met. I met his girlfriend. She is an interesting sort--writes porn for women type stories. Apparently has a publisher and gets paid. With his money she wouldn't need to get paid much.

It's there at the entrance so you know who you are dealing with before you enter. I'm not sure if he is always there in the buff, however stranger things have happened in CA. Given the fact he does lots of business in Arab countries, I wonder how his appearance strikes them, especially if he goes around like that. People are probably careful about calling him on his BS. I wonder if he has ever gored anyone.

I do find the most unusual people, and I don't even try. It just happens.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Another Day Out of the Fog

Praise be, and pbuh, etc. You don't really miss some things until they return, then you realize what you were missing. That's they way the mind is.

The difference is astounding. Every task I performed today seemed accomplished with so much more clarity and awareness. I did not have to strain to monitor every move just to be sure I wasn't about to throw a can of paint in the pool, or cross two lanes of traffic with cars beside me. For the last six weeks to varying degrees I've had to triple and quadruple check every move, or most it seems.

That cannot be right. Whatever the deal, it was delightful to feel so much more aware and on the ball. I fear it may be a cycle and that I may have entered a new era. Maybe yes, maybe no. At least I know if I get fogged in, the wheel is likely to come back around and things will change.

In other irrelevant news, the tourmobile is ready for its first long haul road trip. All we need is the money to do it and off we go. I may add an after burner, turbo charger, and maybe some sort of rocket boost, just to speed things up in case I leave under time constraints. If someone would pay me a few thou real quick just for being, then I could go while it is still warm in Taos and CO, and I'd include them as well as points south I have in mind. Got relatives and such in the great state of Texas so that is the number one priority for a visit. Everything else is subject to factors too numerous and unknown to list.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

All of a Sudden I Don't Feel Comatose

For the last month, at least, I felt progressively brain dead. Moreso than usual. Way more. It was exhausting in an odd way. This one was new. It wasn't like the traditional fog which waxes and wanes, although the symptoms of the relief when it lifted are reminiscent of the cycling syndrome of the past. I learned to ignore the highs and lows.

This time it seemed like whatever is in my brain was locked away. Just this weekend I realized I could not remember simple things like which side of the plate goes the fork? Now I know, and that sounds silly. It is just an example, but something that bothered me because it is a thing I know and can normally picture from experience. That scared me a little.

Then today my senses slowly returned. I feel almost clear. By the end of the day I realized my head was no longer filled with molasses. It is quite an extraordinary thing when relief comes, and you can't even put a label on what is being relieved. I'll bet my IQ is now back up to that of a human. For awhile there I felt that snails were outwitting me and making fun of my slow mental capacities, behind my back of course. Snails are sneaky cowards and totally lacking in compassion.

Whatever was going on, I hope that is the last of it, or at least the last of experiencing that degree of inability to connect with my brain. Maybe I have been too exposed to fumes of various varieties. I finally removed some things from my car which gave it a fumey aspect when the windows were up. There could be a correlation. I wouldn't want to think it was an actual organic malfunction.

Time, once again, to stop sniffing glue.

Relief is a recurring theme in my life. I am always thrilled when it happens, and I often am in situations which weigh me down or wear me out, then comes the salvation and relief. It is not always related to being temporarily out of touch with my normal thought process. Some of those times were rather dark. The beginning of relief is usually pretty clear cut. Getting out of that pit I was in before leaving Memphis was a huge deal. I remember the night it turned the corner and starting moving in the right direction. It took about a year to get out after that. I was in deep. That was a huge relief. A gift.

This time I don't have to become cautious due to feeling unreasonably euphoric. That last episode was something different. It may be good I don't have easy access to the medical world. I am pretty sure I'd be undergoing a zillion tests and taking pills, and not feeling better in the long run. If you ask, the medical world will do their best to fix whatever bothers you, even if you'd be better off just dealing with it without chemical, or other, intervention.

Not everyone is better off without pills and such. I am, unless something new crops up. It took doing the rounds to figure that out. A lot of years. At least I have hard evidence which proves I don't imagine these foggy periods. That is worth more than any treatment I ever had for it. I just don't like it when the slo-mo periods change their nature. Then you worry that something new is in the mix. Unless things became really serious it is best just to ride it out I think.

If most drugs were legal and you could get what you felt you need over the counter, I might use some ritalin or the like temporarily in a fog like I had. And it would harm no one. Not worth the time and trouble to mess with the industry for it. Should be legal--even cocaine, and opium. They have their place is you don't become an addict. I see no reason a doctor has more rights to decide what I buy than I do. Indirectly, it is actually the government deciding what you can choose for yourself. It would be a lot cheaper to bypass all the middle men.

So, there you have it. I would decriminalize possession of any drug by an adult. Now, being hazardous by driving or whatever is a matter for peace keepers. I doubt you'd have any more issue with blitzed fools making trouble than you do now. People fear freedom. They are convinced the Lord of the Manor knows best. Unevolved souls; they just can't let go of the feudal system. Willing slaves of the state who are convinced the rest of humanity is incapable of making their own decisions. Always a rationalization for fear of freedom. Always has something to do with the hypothetical greater good.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Sand in My Shoes

A Miami friend once told me that it is unnatural for a Miami boy to be long away from the ocean. He said, "Once you have sand in your shoes, you never get it out", r words to that effect. The sand in your shoes part I know is verbatim. All the other words may be off. The point is there.

It is somewhat true. I've lived long periods away from the ocean, but always managed to get my sea fix at intervals. Today was one of those times. Just get over there to hear the surf and breath the air. I was not set to go in the water. CA water is not warm like it is in South Florida. But the waves are better and most beaches here are better; not little skinny strips of sand like a lot of FL beaches.

I like the quiet and remoteness away from the crowd, but if money were no object, I think living by the sea would be hard for me to resist. Fortunately, where I live, I can get to mountains and to the ocean easily. Not something that takes all day.

Maybe I should set as a goal the ability to secure adequate digs in an ocean area and in mountains. I'm still partial to semi tropical islands, but so are half the gazillionaires of the world, and they tend to cause prices to go way up in those areas. Their influence in the keys means those who work in the Florida Keys can rarely afford to live there. They bus in workers from the mainland every day. Nuts. So, how can I become a gazillionaire without having to rub shoulders with too many of them?

Maybe that is too big a quest. You never know, and it doesn't pay to believe it is impossible. It is not the money, but what the money can do. Every once in awhile a gig shows up which puts once into situations and lifestyles he could never swing with his own limited resources. All the perks, none of the responsibility and headaches of ownership and schmooz politics.

I like the coastal scene, particularly in warm climates. But, I also like this scene in the low mountains where you can see hawks flying at eye level off the back deck.

Maybe it is just because I am thirsty all the time lately, and large bodies of water are attractive as a result. I feel like I'm drinking gallons of water. I'm a wateroholic. You can get good purified water for .25 /gal. and it tastes great. Water doesn't really have flavor. Not pure water. Supposedly not. I like the way it tastes anyway, and the way it feels going down my throat.

I don't think most people have that desire for water. Not in the quantities I crave. It's been awhile since I was this consistently thirsty. I was like that as a kid, then I learned about alcohol, and tried to somehow transfer the thirst. The consequences of water and alcohol consumption in large quantities are far different. Who knew?

OK, so it must be a primal urge that causes me to be drawn to the ocean and prepared to drink it up if it weren't so salty. One day it will all make sense. Probably not today.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

I can run but I cannot hide...

from myself.

The War on Poverty has actually proven to be war on individual enterprise, a war on opportunity, a war against those who might escape poverty.

The War on Terror is, in large part, a war on the innocent, a war against individual freedom, an excuse to abuse those it deems to protect.

The War on Drugs is a war to ensure their proliferation, a war on individual liberty and a vehicle by which organized crime and violent gangs proliferate. It is a war to assure that the traffic of drugs remains under control of selected entities.

My war against self defeat has become one of a war against self acceptance. But I'm not that bad, I don't think. Not sure. I fear screwing up even the most minor of responsibilities, commitments and obligations. I'm a slack citizen.

If I could run fast enough, long enough, I could escape all that worry. If I had a vehicle and means to spend all day racing away at hundreds of miles per hour, dawn to dusk, then I might be able to sleep at night, but only if the next day was spent the same way, racing on too fast for me to catch up.

It is a guilty thing, self pity and loathing. Look around at those who would love to have a roof over head, arms that ache, legs for walking, eyes to see, etc. What a whiner I am sometimes. Go, be no more the stoopit idiot, or at least forget complaining about it. Some people would love to have the luxury of such idiocy.

Maybe avoidance of all is best

It must be the recent contact with a long lost friend that is bringing this on. That sadness which chases me through time has come back. Remembering things long forgotten, people long gone, and misguided choices and bad judgement whose influence seems never ending is like a death sentence. Try as I have, it never quite clears out completely, or enough.

I know that all there is is from now on, and that time spent fretting over what can't be changed is not sane, but knowing and convincing the involuntary reactive mechanisms of the body are two different things. Perhaps the pervasive waves of disconnect from life are an inheritance. It is my job to carry the sadness. That doesn't sound like any job I'd voluntarily seek.

Maybe it was like the draft; no choice--your duty is to give over your life for a cause which is unclear and probably not founded in anything honorable or right. Who would have thought I'd now be siding with the sentiment of those who shouted, "Hell no! I won't go"? What about loyalty and fidelity and allegiance? Holy smoke. That is what got me into this mess.

Misplaced, blind allegiance can destroy a person. It is the stuff of dysfunction. That is what keeps a person in an atmosphere of abuse, becoming an accessory to his own demise. (or her, for those unaccustomed to universal pronouns) One thing for sure, the path of one's life can be irreversibly altered when one succumbs to loyalty in the face of deceit, treachery and misguided use of power and control.

The real result of being so steeped in the pain and clouded vision of others is that you lose all sense of your real self. You become someone you are not. At least you try like hell to be what you aren't. That can happen, anyway. And it often does. People like me spend a lifetime attempting to fit where they don't, and get good enough at it that from the outside it is rare that anyone else can see the root of the problem. It just appears like I do what I want, and that I have some need to drop it all and start over every five or ten years, or less.

It all hit me like a tidal wave today. Talking to Jonathan brought back choices made trying to escape the insanity of my life. Many of which were due to the constant threat of the draft looming around the corner, yet being a draft dodger was taboo. Being almost anything was taboo.

In the realm of seeking approval, it was drilled into me that being other than an officer in the Air Force was no good (if you were in the military), being drafted was a failure, and avoiding the draft was a cardinal sin. To do it over, I'd have ignored the draft altogether. I certainly couldn't picture myself in ROTC. Nothing wrong with it, but I am not the stuff of a military based on obedience rather than clear cut reason. I had no desire to be in the military unless it was a case of clear cut defense; a definite principled cause felt at my core. Some people are not that drawn to the military and its culture. I wasn't, except to the idea of flying Navy or Air Force fighters--carrier landings would have suited me. So, for me, the Air Guard. I thought it was the state militia. Obviously those days are gone.

Armed forces do have cool machines and amazing training. The feats the special forces of various branches can perform are nothing short of amazing. The direction from the top is nothing short of criminal, I'm afraid. But that is not the issue here.

I snubbed the people I really should have befriended and gravitated toward those who proved to be duplicitous and lacking in honor, integrity and, often, intelligence. That set the stage for a meandering mess of good efforts overshadowed by bizarre lapses in judgement. The life of an idiot.

I keep trying to convince myself, "Go. Be an idiot no more", but I am not clear enough to know how. It puts a wedge between me and my family in some tacit way. I feel like the loser among them. They appear to be less burdened by the ghosts of their own ineptness and stupidity. I stand out like a sore thumb. They'd like to believe I just travel to the beat of a different drum, and I do. The problem is, I have never quite found that rhythm.

This sort of feeling tends to paralyze one, and I get sick of it. Writing it out has helped relieve the pressure some. The number of people in my bracket, who have slipped between the usual categories we're told is normal, are legion. I know that. Many guys are floating around wondering that they are so distant from the path we were taught is normal, healthy and right.

Many of us are not convinced that the prescribed path is really what is best, yet deep down it is ingrained, still, that not following it was a sin never to be forgiven. We try to pretend, at times, that our road is not one of failure, but of choice and creativity. Bold travelers, living a life of freedom. Not without a tinge of self pity and woe over being victims of whatever.

We are not sure where we should be, what we should be doing, but there is that nagging feeling that this is another enterprise into idiocy and self destruction. I said "many", not "all" of us feel that way. There are those who don't fit the usual cubby holes who know who they are, and why, and have no qualms about it. They are fortunate.

This is why people have spiritual beliefs and practices. Without some kind of faith in something beyond us, we'd have no hope of tolerating ourselves. Self loathing run riot. Maybe that is the real psychology behind gangs, addiction, and groups who use causes to make life hell for others as they suspend decency in the name of some greater good. That last category is a sneaky one, but rationalizing reasons for self righteous anger, then using that rationalization to act out at the expense of others is definitely a detrimental activity to the health of the race.

Just a rough day. I'll get over it. What is in front of me may not be what I think should be here at this point in my life but it is the best I have. Thinking beyond the immediate is not something I can do at the moment with any constructive clarity. Dealing with the immediate, trivial aspects of life is the best hope, and essential to making things better.

I live like a hitchhiker, never knowing for sure what is next or if I will ever get from A to B. You just live on faith that somehow you will arrive.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Quick Sunrise Powerlink Overview

This network of giant towers through Cleveland National Forest, which is being rammed through by SDGE/Sempra has been represented as a link to "green" energy sources and something helpful to San Diego County.

Here are only some the items that the Company cannot adequately answer:
(I have witnessed their responses first hand)

1. Is there actually a need, since by their own data this assertion is dubious at best? Evidence weighs heavily against the idea that it is needed.

2. Is this planned to serve San Diego as alleged? No, it has been discovered it is intended to serve points north, like Sean Penn's house. And maybe Ahnode's.

3. Will this be a big supply of energy from windmills, sunshine and green things? Guess again. It is set to pipe in energy from Mexican plants fired by coal and oil.

4. Will it have no negative impact on communities like Alpine and Ballistic Mountain, as the Company asserts? Ha! It will not only spoil the view, but it will make fire fighting very difficult in proximity to the towers, and the towers are set to be in place very close to many homes.
In Alpine, where they will run along Main Street, underground, taking two years of construction, businesses and property values will take a dive. Congestion is barely tolerable now, and reducing it to one lane with their hacks directing traffic will kill any reasonable travel at rush hour, lunch hour and most any hour between 7 am and 10 pm. Just go look.

It will ruin Alpine's tourism and much, most likely most, of its economy. It will become a bedroom community with nothing but hopeless for sale signs.

5. It is a water intensive construction process. What will it do to the well water people like us? The company doesn't know but they assure all that they'll do their best. If it does mess up the well situation, which they concede it may, they assure us that they probably can't do much to mitigate the damage. Good news.

6. Is this route the only possible one and the one with the least impact on private property? No, they could run it down I-8's median, but CalTran doesn't want them to. So they gerrymandered the thing all over the mountains. Much higher construction cost and much worse for homeowners. However, someone is making a bundle off that.

So, since it is a plan which by its own data and studies probably is not needed, which by its own information will increase fire risks and reduce fire abatement efforts, and which will bring in not so green power from Mexico, how can anyone complain? Arnold wants it so bad he threatened to fire anyone on the utilities board who opposed it.

If local government controlled utilities operations are riddled with such corruption, can you imagine the mass of it nationwide?

Another move which has the effect of punishing those who choose to live away from urban centers. Another case which casts grave doubts on Arnold's understanding of how it is supposed to work in America. He is as out there as all the others. He understood opportunity to promote one's self in this country, but has no clue whatsoever as to the underlying principles which make opportunity possible for the individual. He is just another Kennedy, but disguised as a body building lecher.

Bad News, Good News: more about products

OK. So, after saving and slaving I got new shoes for the Tourmobile#2. #1, may it rest in peace, and peace be upon it--as they say--met it's untimely demise almost a year ago and I still get teary eyed at the thought. So, this newer one is the focus.

The new tires made a tremendous difference and I thought alignment was in order. Discount doesn't do alignments, and I've never been too thrilled with tire place alignment work anyway. I took it to a good specialist shop recommended by my friend the ex body shop mogul, and infallible source for where to go in SD county. Hell of a singer and classy guitar player as well.

***special note: Discount Tire in Poway gets an A. Poway has the best Home Depot, best Ace Hardware, pretty good Dixieline Lumber, and A grade Discount Tire shop. People drive like hostile dorks but they have the good supply houses***

***for the record: Yokahama xk520(?) something like that. Couldn't quite go up to Michelin but these seemed good for the money and had the "best" rating. I like them and may even marry them.***

East County Alignment did a great job but informed me that the left rear strut "is blown". Yikes. It is not the sort of thing of which you just replace one, and it costs a bundle on this Subaru. Not wanting to do all four because A) I don't have that much money, and B) I can't afford it, I was almost ready to arrange to have the rear two done--a stretch of the finances, but theoretically doable.

Then it hit me: maybe it is still under warranty. So, I called the dreaded dealer. Sure enough, it probably is covered but the service guy was afraid to commit because people come in after accidents and everything else trying to get warranty coverage on what's broke. Since I have no such condition, I expect it to be covered, and I know they don't replace just one. I'm pushing for all four. If that's the case, then I can afford the big 60K service which is hundreds less than I thought.

It cost a lot more on the 2004 one when I had that service in Memphis. How confusing. It may be they made some changes that reduced labor or they figured they wouldn't do as much. My favorite private shop in memphis estimated about what the dealer charged so it wasn't out of line, just how it goes.

The whole process actually left me feeling encouraged. First point of encouragement is that I had the oomph to actually do a bit of research rather than blindly throw money, very hard earned money, at the issue. Secondly, to find out this big service is over $400 less than expected.

If all goes perfectly, that means I get the struts fixed, and I get the big service done which means the Tourmobile will be ready for my next big journey which I hope occurs by early autumn. Once it is in ready condition, then all there is to it is to save up the dough for fuel, road food, camping and etc. It is just crazy enough it may work.

I'm still not too happy with those hell child garage doors with the gas soaked tar and wax on them, so next week I will see what I can do. I hate it when I work like crazy for a hundred hours or more and do not like the outcome. I shall prevail. That's all I can say.

Anyway, I give these struts a B-. Probably the car underwent abuse before I owned it, then my dirt road did not help matters. It is a good car. All things considered, even having to deal with a few items it was not a bad deal. I've abused the interior to the point of guilt. Much of it work related. The rest can only be attributed to neglect and too much hermit lone wolfery.

For the record, I highly recommend East County Alignment in Santee.

They did check and clean the brakes and figure I have lots of life there. I'm easy on brakes. Why stop if you don't have to?

Now let's keep fingers crossed that this warranty bit works out. If not I guess I'll go back to East County and put off the 60K hooplah. If they did not deal with things I'm not so set up to do, I would do it myself. Sometimes it is better to trade refinishing teak furniture for auto maintenance than to try to do both myself. Oh, or saltillo tile resealing, or creating clever and unusual solutions to problems only found in houses like those owned by all the president's men.

I'm so glad I have heard only excerpts of recent speeches and nationwide demagoguery lately. It poisons the mind. And boggles all sense of honest reason.

++I should soon publish a post devoted to my friend Jonathan, someone I met in second grade who has recently been in touch. Another bohemian sort who understands the impossibility of traveling to any but the different drummer. I never met a more consummate ladies' man. Or anyone who seemed to share my inability to grow up. Another who has done graduate work at the School of Hard Knocks and still has a sense of humor. One of the few from early South Miami youth with whom I don't mind re-establishing communication.

Store Bought Tortilla Product Review

I've been known to buy the 100 pack but usually stick to the 30 pack of tortillas. That will carry me about a week.

I noticed that in SoCal the ones you get from the store are softer and fresher than in Memphis. The commute may not be worth the trouble unless you are heavily into the nuances of tortillas.

It ma be noted that I am primarily focusing on white corn tortillas. Wheat flour ones have their place but I hardly think they count as real tortillas. Yellow corn tortillas are OK but not the same thing.

OK, Mission Bell is usable and sometimes all there is, but you should go for Guerrerro (spelling maybe es maybe no). The gerrerrerrerros are far softer and fresher and work better. I put about 5 in the pan, spread out as much as possible, with a little olive oil or whatever oil I have--maybe the oil from my oil change--then put a lid on the frying pan, heat it for a little bit, drop in a couple of eggs on top, the recover it, get some water in my hand, throw it in to make steam, and in no time the eggs are cooked and so are the tortillas.
If you are really living high, you may have cheese and tomatoes to throw in. Toss in the cheese when you drop in the eggs. Tomatoes can go on later if you prefer they not get cooked much.

Yes, the Guerrerr-etc brand is the ticket on this item. You are welcome.

See how happy you can be? !Si! Muy happidad!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

More Product Reviews: Makita Finish Sander, Canadian Sandpaper

I have a Dewalt and a Makita finish sander. Why two? I don't know, but good thing I do have 2.

So, I thought the Makita was more compact and easier to work with which is why I used it all the time. Then the clip that holds the paper fails. More accurately the badly designed plastic hole that holds the clip that holds the sandpaper failed. Just busted out. No reason that should happen. Bad bad design. Stoopittt!

Otherwise, I obviously liked the Makita. Now I say, "Shame on you, Makita engineer, I suggest you fall on your sword out of shame."
Now to sandpaper. I was mildly relieved and somewhat surprised to see that Norton job packs of the stuff are made in Canada. I expected China or Borneo.

I do have a bit of paper made in China, and it does come in through Norton Abrasives. It sucks. D. I am a liberal grader when it comes to the low marks. They deserve an F, but I reserve that for the Gator grit garbage that Ace sells. And it is made in the USA. Oh, the humiliation.

The stuff that Norton claims "lasts 3X longer, cuts 3X faster" is deserving of an A, I think.

Faster and longer than what, they do not say. It works 10X better than that garbage from Ace and China. Their paper tears and is generally not good for anything but flat straight line work.

Norton, MADE IN CANADA, (possibly from the ground up teeth of hockey payers, recovered after matches), Is by far the best I have dealt with yet.

Norton's wet and dry is good too. On that count the paper from Finland is not bad either. I give both an A, however I seek out Norton when possible--partly because it is North American, and Canadians are hot, and partly because it reminds me of Norton from the Honey Mooners, Jackie Gleason's sidekick.

Mostly you find Norton at Home Depot. Maybe some high end woodworking places have better, but for the average Joe, Norton's a name you can trust.

Thank you, Canada.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Tips for the Reluctant Craftsman: part 290-product review 331

Today's product being reviewed--Penofin oil finish for wood products

The review contains a few suggestions describing How I Do It (the title of one of my many books soon to be released)

First you need to strip the teak item to be finished. If it has some kind of varnish or the like, hit it with a quick going over using 80 to 120 grit sandpaper. Feel free to use a motorized sander where possible. Don't waste much time on this part.

OK. Penofin stripper. This is a useful substance. It works with water, which I like. You wet the piece to be stripped. Soak that baby. Then you brush on the stripper, which looks harmless, doesn't give off a whole lot of fumes, and seems like thinned out liquid soap. Don't be fooled. This stuff will eat a sponge--I know. That's why I use a brush now.

OK, you let it sit there, and mist with water if it starts to dry. If there is a lot of oil or whatnot deep in the wood, use a scrub brush on it. That works wonders. Then you hose it off. It does a better job than other things I've used with less annoyance and easier clean up.

Penofin stripper gets an A.

Penofin Marine Oil finish:
This stuff is somewhat tinted. Not a lot though. It has very good UV protection and penetrates the wood better than most.
After stripping, you used some brand of teak cleaner and cleaned the thing with that--brush it on and rinse it off. Penofin makes a cleaner but I had some other stuff so if there is a difference I can't say, but doubt the cleaner brand matters.

OK. Then you went over everything with 220 grit to get rid of fuzz and smooth things out. You now brush on the marine finish, let it sit for 20 minutes, then wipe off the excess thorughly. Rub that baby down. It will feel dry to the touch when you've done it right.

Before wiping it dry you can make it all better by going over it with 600 grit wet and dry sandpaper. 400 grit is ok but I like the 600 better. You can begin by rubbing in the oil with the wet and dry, but I like it the way described.

I like the way the things look after applying the Marine oil finish. I also like how it goes on and in. It is different than the Watco teak oil. Not sure how, but it is. More goes in than wipes off.

I have a feeling it will hold up better than most. Time will tell. For now I give Penofin Marine finish an A.

Penofin Verde Oil finish:
You can get it with a tint of varying shades but I used clear on a cedar bench. The process for preparing the cedar was the same as the teak, including using teak cleaner stuff to wash it out, and including the 220 grit final sanding and the 600 or 400 oil application step.

Verde is touted as all environmentally friendly etc. I don't care. It has the advantage of being relatively odorless. You are more likely to need more than one coat with this, but one is certainly adequate if you aren't being too particular. I'm often too particular. One coat did very well, but I want to go over the whole thing with 400 grit on a power sander, then rub in more Verde with 600 grit--all f which is not really a requirement for many situations.

OK. The verde is easy to work with. Brush on, wipe off and that's that. I just want to make the surface slicker and a bit more lustrous. Not to be confused with lusty. Verde also has high UV protection. A tinted oil always has a bit more, but not much in this case. It is good stuff.

Verde gets an A.

I'd give all these items A+ if it required no sanding or work to bring out the best. Of course I'd give a chain saw an A+ if it cut down the tree then milled it into perfectly smooth beams and boards with no effort on my part, too.

After doing all of the above, you can use denatured alcohol or vodka to clean your hands. Once you've put everything away, get naked, jump into the spa, heated to 102F, hope there is no one in the bushes filming for youtube, then relax and forget it.

Uh OH, I'm one of the New Right Malcontents

There are a lot of things on TV these days. Many a horse's ass pretends to do in depth hard hitting news. What a shame it is so easy to appear complete and informative, while distorting truth and casting the harmless and honorable as monsters and fools.

Apparently anyone who owns a copy of the Constitution, and prefers that government constrain itself to the limits set forth there, is considered a domestic threat. Personally, I consider the El Cajon CA Highway patrol a greater domestic threat than anyone but La Raza and the KKK. Interesting that none of those groups represents anything close to what this constitutional republic is supposed to be.

The big fear that anyone question or flat out disagree with the current administration has led guys like Mathews (winny, neigh) to paint dissenters as ignorant, dangerous, racist-- anything that defames. Truth is irrelevant more or more.

Anyway, after listening to officials and news creeps, I realize that by their definition, I am a right wing wacko. I think the IRS is evil. I think things which enslave people in any way are evil. I do not believe that anyone has a right to take from people against their will. I'm not even pro union, and yet I am not fond of the present corporate structure, especially in any form of "partnership" with government.

Wackos like me are a danger because we don't think the state ought to have stop light cameras or other devices of similar intrusion. I think Homeland Security department (thanks a lot W) is as big a threat to domestic freedom as is the violent, radically psychopathic arm of Islam. I oppose cap and trade, the health care scam, bailouts, and politicians dictating energy technology. That makes me and anyone like minded a big threat to this steam roller collectivist movement. Stalin would be proud of them, he'd shoot us.

I do think people should get away with shooting gang bangers. And I support anyone's right to protect life, limb, property and family from evil doers whether by deadly force or reasonable man traps.

It disturbs me to know I have crossed into that realm of those who serve as laughing stock for the elitists who are sure they will always be in charge and privileged, and for those who, in my view, prefer to follow the herd rather than think. I think too many people fear freedom because they've been trained to believe that the free will run amok and make life dangerous. Ignore the fact that the more they have given over responsibility for their own well being, the higher the crime rate, the less free they've become.

Apparently trading security for freedom has resulted in neither. People who think like that are wackos, and so am I. Where they get right wing, I don't know.

I'm wondering how the party of slavery became the preferred party of such self proclaimed defenders of rights such as Sharpton and Jackson. Perhaps the subtle nature of modern moves toward mass enslavement tend to fool great numbers of people. Check back in 200 years and we'll see if I was right. No way the spell will be broken quick enough for those under its grip to realize any time soon that I am telling the truth, and so are some other wacko fringe people.

Why they shoot ducks

So, it was five something, A.M.. IN THE Morning, to be clear, EARLY in the morning. I was sleeping at the place where I do important work, remotely related to national security, Michele's biceps, and the strings that orchestrate her husband's every action, or inaction. But other than that's where I was, all the rest is neither here nor there. Or is it? No, it is irrelevant I am sure. But I bet they are watching, so I use the spa in birthday attire at the end of the day, just to figuratively thumb my nose at them.

OK. I'm having bizarre other-worldly dreams, which is typical at that place because wife #1, almost a household name, put a hex on it. Some kind of voodoo hoodoo.

I wake up to rude squawking and splashing. The back door of the room I use opens onto the patio and pool. I thought it was a combination of crows and pool hoppers. I throw the door open and discover it was a gang of vandal ducks. They should be migrating, shouldn't they? Go north, harass Canada or, if you dare, Minnesota or one of those places.

The creeps just gave me a dirty look- until I charged, clapping my hands, describing how they were to be my breakfast. I was pulling the old, "Yea, I'm a carnivore like crazy" bluff. No need to tell ducks I don't eat duck. It worked, but my sleep situation was irreparably disrupted and bruised.

The creeps crapped in the pool, and I bet they peed, too. No manners.

So, next time you see a duck hunter, say "Thank you". That person is probably saving you a good night's sleep and protecting you from duck debris too horrid to describe.

On the other hand, what if they were really government ducks sent to spy on me? You really can't be too careful, and you certainly cannot trust your elected puppets and the rest of that mess (aka "public sector") not to violate your personal space. I bet the reason I am so tired is that they are somehow monitoring my brain waves, reading my thoughts and attempting to replace them with happy visions of being a slave of the state.

The fatigue I feel is due to the fact that I am constitutionally incapable of being molded in that way. The only people who can make me say and do things counter to my best judgement are women. And even they cannot cause me to follow the rules as laid out by these corrupt impostors who hate the free.

See, if i had been packing a shotgun, I could have shut up the ducks, sent a message to any others in the area, and, if they were spy drones, I'd have struck a blow against The Man, foiling his diabolical intrusion on my sleep and thoughts. I see no downside to shooting those ducks. However, this is California, and I doubt it is legal to shoot them, even in a private swimming pool.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Almost Communicado

I've been incommunicado for a couple of days now. In some respects even longer. It was my decision to avoid all until I had the stubborn garage doors at the British oil man's house worked down to the point where there is nothing more to do until Raul shows with the secret formula number 2, the paste wax of unknown substances. I suspect it is really show polish mixed with bee's wax and peyote. Perhaps there is a drop of virgin's blood or an entire virgin in the mix. One can only speculate and, perhaps, hope.

My goal was to finish with the sanding and sealing by this past Monday. It took longer than expected. Six to eight hours, sanding by hand, using my fingers to try to get little places here, there and everywhere is not something I generally do. Yesterday I put in 11 hours on the final push. My fingers were somewhat raw. Then I felt no pian but they seemed to have a strange tactile sense. I thought maybe I'd inadvertently sanded off my finger prints.

It turned out that they were merely sealed byt the sealer I'd been applying to the doors. Once I rubbed it off, I again felt the burn and normal sense of touch. No finger prints would have been cool.

The crazy thing is that I don't even know what I'm getting paid. I bid the job figuring an entirely different scenario. This has taken many hours more. More than I would want to admit. The goal of making it right appears to be close to being realized, though. That is the important part; Turning out the result to which I committed. I wanted to run away from this mess in the worst way. That was before I found out what I was dealing with and made some progress. Then it grew to an obsession. Now if Raul will hurry up with this top secret mix, maybe I can be done with it altogether.

I now know how to do something I didn't know existed. Wonder if that will ever pay off.

So, after days and days away from home, working the doors and doing some projects around the corner for the weel connected Democrat, I made it home. By the way, if you think the dems are not money people, and that their policies do not serve some segment of the monied elite, you are miles off the mark. That's OK. I get paid to do the work the illegals won't do.

Tomorrow, I have to go back. Then Sat. do work at a private house. Not one of the rich folk houses. I agreed long ago, but I've decided this sort of thing is not for me. Since this person runs the political house, and that is where my bread is buttered, best to bite the bullet and go through with this.

We have a strange gig Sunday at some Rotary club thing. I like to play so I will, but for various reasons I have a feeling I am not that much on the same page with this group of roto heads. It will be OK.

After that, I'm almost back to my normal slack self, and I'll be communicado.

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day


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