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Month: August 2018

Ah, home “improvement”

I awoke this morning to a panoply of rubble. Ladders, drop cloths, tubs of tools, scrap lumber obliterating what’s left of the lawn, fragments of corrugated acrylic roofing, paint cans, buckets of paintbrushes in water, tubes of caulk, boxes of nails and screws, tarps, you name it. They call this home “improvement”? Sigh. The interior of the house is as bad as the exterior. Objects pulled from the walls and shelves (so they wouldn’t pull themselves off walls and shelves when the Monk attacked nearby walls with his reciprocal saw, a tool I’ve come to both hate and respect). Hand…


Thank you … somebody

I haven’t been paying daily attention to my Amazon Associates links since last year’s Great Nerfing. Commissions have fallen between 30-50%, not because people are buying less, but because of Amazon’s drastic fee cuts. But I finally took a look this morning and discovered that earlier this month somebody got sufficient high-tech desks to equip a small business. It also happened that this purchase fell into one of the (rare and highly arbitrary) categories that actually earns more than it would have before the Grand Nerf. In short: Dear Anonymous Somebody, you not only earned me the largest single-day’s commission…


Thursday links

  • For the first time in 45 years, a Texas cop is found guilty for a murder he committed in the line of duty. Now let’s see whether he serves the time any other cold-blooded killer would. Ummmm … nope.
  • It is not a violation of Twitter policy to wish someone would kill the children of NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch — even though it is a violation of Twitter policy to wish for the killing of anybody else.
  • The economy: “Winter is coming.” 12 Comments
  • How do you stay mad at somebody who does things like that?

    One of the challenges of renovating a place like Ye Olde Wreck is deciding what to perfect, what to merely improve as best you can, and what you just have to live with. Sometimes it’s a matter of affordability. Sometimes a matter of priorities. Sometimes it’s simply about deciding to keep something because you fear that opening up that particular wall or floor or ceiling space might also mean opening a can of worms. Such was the case with my kitchen window. It’s another big, modern, vinyl window (the windows being one of three reasons the place seemed worth buying…


    Construction: Next few days

    With The Wandering Monk in disappearance mode, I’ve been scrambling to keep up with summer house projects. Yesterday I worked on gutters, soffits, and trim. The toughest bit was removing a 28-foot section of old aluminum continuous gutter. This is a much more formidable object than you’d think — especially when it has raw metal edges and you’re on the fifth step of a ladder in the general direction said object is trying to fall. But isn’t falling because you have to yank and hammer on that one last stubborn connection that’s holding it to the rafters. And you just…


    Monday links

  • I was waiting for somebody to say this. Although I don’t agree with it all, John McCain was one of the biggest authoritarians ever to infest Congress. He never met a freedom that he didn’t want to destroy. I’m sorry he died a terrible death, but I’m glad he’s no longer in the ruling class.
  • PC run amok. A NASCAR driver loses a sponsorship because of a dumb remark his father made 35 years ago.
  • Via Maggie’s Farm: Seven things I’d do if I wanted to keep poor people poor. 15 Comments
  • Little Pink House

    While the rain kept me indoors this afternoon, I watched Little Pink House, the wonderful new indie movie about Susette Kelo and her fight (aided by the Institute for Justice) to keep her own Olde Wreck of a home. It’s not a documentary, but a dramatization with the great Catherine Keener as Kelo. Very good movie. I highly recommend it. Although small bits of the dialog are too expository (perhaps necessary to set up the complex legal and political issues), the performances are awesome and the story both uncompromisingly freedomista and surprisingly un-Hollywoodized. Keener totally nails Kelo. She’s an undereducated,…


    Walkway, beginning

    This was today’s main project. Not a big project; it was rainy and I got covered in mud from handling used concrete and 3/4-minus gravel (which has a lot of fine gritty stuff in it to encourage it to pack down). I came inside early. But I’m happy with this beginning of a front walkway. The kid rocked the area yesterday (over black plastic, of course, sloped slightly away from the house). I came back today and added a few cartloads to smooth the gravel, level it up, and give something more to hold the stones. I’d become a little…


    Weekend links

    The tech giants are secretly meeting to protect their platforms against political manipulation collude in a joint electoral strategy. A rat is a rat is a rat is a rat, Scott Greenfield accurately notes. She frantically called cops twice for help getting her baby out of a hot, locked car. They blew her off. Both times. At least they later apologized, though. They didn’t come and taser her to death. That’s something. Bigger airplanes, smaller seats, weird proposals for change. If an American cop had done this, it would probably be considered one of the rare cop-firing offenses. This Argentinian…