Thursday, May 13, 2021

Post 4003 - Thursday Night Antics

Well, hello again.

Didn't write the last couple of days. Sorry about that. Tuesday night I turned in early because  Wednesday morning, early, an electrician was gonna drop by to do some work here. He didn't show up at the last minute. Wednesday night, the hours melted away, as they do, and nothing got done, including a blog post.

The electrician finally showed up Thursday afternoon. The outside electrical outlet has been cutting out; the man who built the deck last year complained his power tools kept shorting out the outlet. The electrician discovered that, yes, the outlet was on its way out. Water was getting to it, and he showed me where the electricity had damaged it. He replaced it and the cover as well. Works perfectly. I also had him install a second outdoor outlet, which also works great. I should have done this years ago. And the price was actually quite a bit less than I expected it to be. I was very pleased with his work. 

I have spent quite a bit of money on the house in the past 10 months. A tear down and take away of an old shed. New rear deck. The side steps were refurbished. And the new doors and windows throughout. And the work done on Thursday. It was quite a bit of money, but I got a lot in return for the expenditures.

The next thing is pressure washing. I need to find someone who does that, as the rear of the house requires it. After that, it is past time to stain the front veranda, the side steps, and the new deck. There is always something to do when you have a house. People who rent think we have it easy. They are wrong.

It is past midnight. I think I will turn in. 

See you tomorrow.


Monday, May 10, 2021

Post 4002 - Monday Night Stuff

This will be an interesting blog post to write. Newbie is nestled against my left arm, and I am a proper typist, so my ability to type is hampered a bit. 

It was a good day, with a bit of disappointing news tonight, when we learned that Fox's "Prodigal Son" was cancelled after two seasons. The show slowed down to a crawl in scenes where Michael Sheen did not appear, so it should come as no surprise that they broke him out of prison a couple of weeks ago. Then, last week's episode had flash back scenes with him in them, but no present day scenes. I have read that the producers have had to work really hard to accommodate Sheen's busy professional schedule, leading to episodes where you hear about his character but do not see him. 

Already, stars of the show are appearing on Twitter and thanking people for watching. Sweet.

No point here to share with you. I just think it's neat how social media have made it possible for the stars of a tv show or a movie or whatever, to interact with their fans so quickly and easily. 

Today was "let's use up some stuff in the fridge before it goes bad", coupled with, "let tear through some stuff on the pvr so it doesn't fall below 20% and start deleting stuff", so we did both. "Mare of Easttown" continues to entertain; I hope they find a way to make more seasons. And I don't know whether "Robot Chicken" will come back or not, but the 2019 episodes are ones we haven't seen, so we are enjoying them. 

One reader wrote to tell me that he may have one of those old Model M keyboards that I covet. Please keep those emails coming to me. Remember that they must be inexpensive. Cannot afford those multi-hundred dollar keyboards, nice as they are.

There is not much else going on, so I will draw this to a close.

See you tomorrow, my lovelies.


Sunday, May 9, 2021

Post 4001 - A Call to Keyboards!

Well, that was fun.

Someone or something tried to clone or hack my Facebook this evening. I wasted no time in locking down my account. Changed the password. Modified my security settings so only I can see my friends list. Other friends of mine on FB can only see our mutual friends, which is fine. I clamped things down, which is something I should have done a long time ago.

This is not all earth shaking stuff, but it was a welcome change from the usual doom and gloom, sturm und drang of the Covid world of the past year or so. I would not want to go through this stress every day, but it was a different kind of stress if you catch my drift.

I meant to write this before, but thank you to the blog reader who sent me photographs of his keyboard, thinking it might be one of the legendary Model M keyboards which I so very much covet. I'm not sure how long he has been reading the blog, but he took the time to send me the photos and tell me a bit about himself. 

To tell him, and by extension all of you, all 4.7 of you that is, a Model M keyboard was manufactured by IBM in the 1980's through the early 1990's. These keyboards, and I am using one to type these words tonight, are big and bulky and heavy and have a satisfying click when you type on it. They have a very comfortable feel and are a joy to type on. 

Here are two pictures of my actual model m keyboard.

So, you'll see that someone long ago put a Lotus 1-2-3 template by the function keys. That was a spreadsheet and database application back in the 1980's. But the second picture shows the manufacture date along with the model number. You also see a bit of the radio I got at a yard sale in Port Williams in 2002 for the munificent sum of 50 cents, along with a piece of my Blue Yeti microphone for the podcast I keep meaning to start. Lastly, there is the perpetual calendar I received as a lovely parting gift when I left a government department in 1998. But I digress.

You see that the model number is 1391401, a very common model number for these keyboards. You also see that it was manufactured in 1989 in Mexico. Frig only knows how such a keyboard ended up in a box along with other keyboards in a thrift store in Halifax in 2017 or whenever I got the thing. 

Anyway, that is the kind of keyboard I want. The IBM logo on the top left or top right or wherever it is along with similar information on the bottom. The Lotus 1-2-3 template is an added bonus. 

I can order these keyboards online from a company that refurbishes these keyboards and even rebuilds them, but the prices of such keyboards are pretty high, a couple hundred dollars US, and nearly as much to mail it to me here in Nova Scotia.
That is why I ask you, my acolytes, my dear friends, to go out there and let me know if you ever see one of these remarkable keyboards out in the wild. Or maybe it is languishing in your office closet, or you find it at a yard sale or thrift store or something. If you find one, let me know, and I will make arrangement for you to send it to me, or we can meet up and do a cheap deal. 
Best bet is to email me here. Put "keyboard" in the subject line. 
Thank you so much.
It is past two in the morning. I really should turn in.
See you... later on today!

Friday, May 7, 2021

Post 4000 - Welcome To The Official Post 4000!

But not really.

As I have told you several times over the years, I have lost count of the number of the blog post here and there and everywhere. This is actually the 4086th post. Some posts are not numbered, or are ".5" posts. For a while, I wrote out the number. And I made mistakes and used the same number a few times. Very confusing to future scholars who will scrutinize this blog for gems of great interest and insight into the human condition. I hereby apologize to them unreservedly.

How was your day? We had 227 new cases of Covid 19 in Nova Scotia today, but that doesn't tell the true story by a country mile. There is a significant back log of data entry to do. I gather it is not as simple as entering the particulars into a spreadsheet or anything like that. The good Doctor Strang mentioned an application called "Panorama", and all I know about it is how to spell "Panorama", but if you had to pin me down, I would speculate that it is a complex thing to use and one cannot enter a case into it without doing some due diligence and case investigation first. 

The upshot is that there are upwards of 200 other cases that haven't been entered into "Panorama" yet. If they had all been entered we would have had something like 427 cases today, which puts us into a type of Stygian-based Hell that should scare all of us into doing the right thing.

After the news presser was over, we went to Bayer's Lake, and then to the Sobeys in Timberlea and then came right home. Except for perhaps, just perhaps, getting some more soil for the garden, or lime, or rickey, or lime rickeys, or pellets that smell or taste like lime, or whatever bag of former feces Patricia points for me to load into the car, then we have every intention of going nowhere for quite some time. I will likely venture out to get the mail every day or so; otherwise, we will stay home and avoid what is going to be a very difficult time for all of us in this province. 

There is plenty to do around the house. It is a question of getting the suitable motivation to do those things. My high school Physics teacher defined "inertia" as a resistance to a change in motion. I have always liked that definition and can point to the state of the recroom as a prime example of inertia in, er, action. There is plenty of stuff down there left over from the great flood of 2019 which was never removed from the boxes the movers put it into. Add to that the things from the Valley house, such as some knick knacks and my father's old hand tools that I could never part with, and you get some idea of what I have to contend with. I have promised Patricia that I will focus on that on Saturday, and I have every intention of doing that. 

Just as soon as I can overcome the inertia.

I think I will call it a night. It's a night. Ha ha. That joke never gets old. Until it does.

See you tomorrow, my lovelies.


Thursday, May 6, 2021

Post 3999 - Thursday Night Ramblings

Hello again, my lovelies.

Sorry I didn't write the last few days. Tuesday, the day after the AstraZeneca shot, I was down for the count. I pretty much slept the day away. I felt better on Wednesday and took Newbie to his vet appointment, which went really well. But i got tired early and turned in early.

Thursday, I slept in and showered and shaved and so on. I got caught up on the dishes and kitchen clean ups before I cooked some chicken thighs for dinner. We had planned to go for a drive, but the latest Covid news made us decide to stay the blazes home.

182 new Covid cases on Thursday. A new record every day. Over 1300 overall cases in the province. And public health officials are all telling us to prepare for more large numbers in the coming days.

These days are nothing compared to what you see in the larger provinces, but they are deeply unsettling nonetheless, considering where we were just a few weeks ago, at almost zero new cases, and very few overall. Now, we are in a lockdown, and the numbers are still rising. It is obvious to me that we need a curfew in this province; I just hope that the premier decides to put on in place. 

An over night curfew would theoretically keep the rabblerousers home. If caught they could be arrested and/or fined. Those who need to be out can do so, but we are at a point where we need to control this virus. 

There will be a Covid briefing on Friday afternoon. We will see what they announce then.

It is pushing 1 ayem. I think I will turn in. 

See you tomorrow.


Monday, May 3, 2021

Post 3998 - What A Day!

My goodness, today was busy.

We got up early, just after 7. We hit the road around 7:45, arriving at the McDonald's on Quinpool Road around 8. Rush hour traffic during a pandemic shutdown is very light. We drove to the parking lot of Century Computer on Spring Garden Road and ate our breakfast there.

Around 8:45, I went into the building and discovered that the store was already open. My new friend Aaron was there and doesn't turn customers away, so I went through with the laptop upgrade I was there for. I bought a laptop there a few weeks ago and learned Friday afternoon that they could sell me a 1TB SSD for $169, which is a really good price given the brand name, a WD Blue. 

I was offered a $30 rebate if they kept the already-installed 256GB SSD, but since it essentially meant that the drive was worth that amount of money, and it would cost more than that to purchase such a drive new, I decided to keep the old drive. So, I now have that old drive, the 475GB SSD when I retired which I retrieved from the previous laptop, and that machine's original standard drive, along with the new purchase today. I am not sure what I will do with the other solid state drives yet. I have to give it some thought.

Anyway, I got out of Century Computers around 9:05. We drove home. Since the new drive was empty, not even partitioned, I had to install an OS on it, and chose the newest version of Linux Mint, which I have on a usb drive. I got that installed, along with the latest updates, and some of the extra apps I want, when the phone rang.

My new friend and I talked for about an hour. The conversation went well. I will share the content of the call as things develop in the coming weeks. If they don't develop, then I'll tell you about that, too. Just not quite yet.

After lunch, we got our first AstraZeneca shot at a local pharmacy. We were told of potential side effects. Other than being maybe a little extra tired tonight, I feel fine. We have nothing booked or arranged on Tuesday. Newbie has a vet appointment Wednesday morning. He may read this post, so perhaps I should not be telling you this. 

When we got home, we broke out the pizza stone and stuck a pizza on it and put it in the barbecue. The crust cooked fine but we had too many toppings on it, so it didn't cook all the way through. And now we have a schmutzy pizza stone that may or may not be easy to clean.  

Ouchy. The next shot is on Aug 16th

So, it has been a busy day. We have earned our rest, and I think I will cash in those chips.

You all have a good day.

Talk at  you tomorrow.


Saturday, May 1, 2021

Post 3997 - Saturday Night Stuff

Sorry I didn't write the last couple of days. I don't have a particular excuse for not writing. It just got late and I decided to turn in without producing a blog post, which was a habit I got into for quite a few months as you will recall.

Anyway, the covid-19 numbers are way up in the last few days. They were down to the 60's on Friday. Then we got the news that there had been so many tests for the virus that it created a significant back log, which the folk who process these tests are working through as diligently as they can. The upshot of that is that we were warned that the covid numbers would be quite large for a period of time as they worked through the backlog.

Saturday's numbers were 148.

We all know that these numbers do not all mean that these new cases, all 148 of them, will not result in people keeling over from the coronavirus. Most of these people, the vast majority of them even, will not suffer more than just mild symptoms. Still and all, if the numbers hold true, several of these folks will end up quite sick, and a few of them will end up in ICU. One or two of them may die. 

Of the remaining people, some of them will spread the virus to others, unknowingly and innocently. These numbers will spread, and the percentages I outlined in the previous paragraph will play out, with larger numbers of sick, those in ICU, and those paying the ultimate price. 

We have made a concerted effort to stay home the last few days. We were out on Wednesday, where I got the lawnmower and Patricia got the soil and the lime. On Friday afternoon, I went to the corner store for munchies. I wore a mask at all times and made every effort to socially distance. We need to get a few groceries, but that can wait until Monday when we get our first vaccine shot, which is at a grocery store's pharmacy and not far from here. We are assuming that after that first shot, we will feel like crap for a day or so. 

In short, we are doing our part to be responsible and to do our best not to acquire the virus, and to prevent others from getting it should we have it. We are asymptomatic, so we are not worried about having the virus, just getting it. 

We cannot understand for the life of us, why people would throw all caution to the wind and not wear a mask,  not socially distance, be utter a-holes about wearing a mask in public. What is wrong with the people who partied in Halifax last night, and were caught by the police, and will now have to pay a $2000 fine, each? 

We. Don't. Get. It. Help us understand what is going on in their pathetic little heads.

In other news, the keyboard on this here laptop is coming along nicely, but I still think the left shift button is far too small, and the enter key on the right is far too big. The right shift button is three times as big as the one on the left, and I want to have a heart-to-heart talk with the engineers at HP and ask them why. I can run this computer for hours and  hours and it barely gets even slightly warm. The old Dell heats up and the fan runs or 20 minutes at a time, so audibly that it was a distraction. I made a wise decision, investing in this much newer machine. 

I think I will turn in. I am not sure just what yet I will do on Sunday, but there will be something to do. There always is.

See you then.