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BLOGical Thoughts Archive

June 2012

Friday, 29 June 2012

I went out to do some stuff on my Plymouth and found that one of the tires was flat. This should never have happened unless I ran over something sharp - the tires have less than 2,000 miles on them. I pumped up the tire and took the car down to Les Schwab to get it fixed. Turns out an irregularity on the inside of the tire wore a hole in the inner tube. I guess they don't make tires like they used to. Of course, nowadays the tires are tubeless, so there is no tube for the inside of the tire to rub against..

The small parts I ordered for the car came yesterday afternoon. I will put them on the car today. Except for the tail light lens, they are hidden parts, so the look of the car is not affected.


 

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Thursday, 28 June 2012

I did some outdoor chores yesterday. One of them was running over to Harbor Freight and picking up a timing light. I then used that on my Plymouth to determine the timing needed adjustment. I did the adjustment, but I haven't gotten close enough to the proper adjustment yet.

I took my 52 Plymouth Concord to the cruise-in at Burger Heaven in Rathdrum last night. I parked it next to a 51 Plymouth Cranbrook which looks as if it just came off the showroom floor. It made my car look downright dowdy. I am so ashamed.

I have parts on order for the Plymouth and they are being shipped. Mostly small stuff, like clips to hold the chrome on and a tail light lens. I also ordered some shocks for the car so it won't look so droopy when it sits next to that 51.


 

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Wednesday, 27 June 2012

I didn't get any outdoor tasks finished yesterday, as it rained. Actually, 'rain' is a mild word for what it did. It rained so much that records were broken. On that date in 1916, Coeur d'Alene got .71" of rain. Yesterday, we got 1.03 inches. I was out in it for a bit, running errands. so I know exactly how hard it rained. I'm definitely happier with sunshine and 75°.


 

I got the Java JRE, Eclipse and TED installed and working in Linux Mint (13) )Maya. The final thing that needs to be configured is the scanning software for my Canon printer. Everything seems to be working okay, and I'm fairly glad to be on a current distro. Linux Mint Maya will be supported until 2017, which is fine with me.


 

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Tuesday, 26 June 2012

I bit the bullet yesterday and installed Linux Mint 13 with Máte on this workstation. It took me at least half of yesterday to do that. Installing the O/S was the easy part. It took much more time and effort to re-install all the applications I had on this machine. Installing things like scribus, filezilla, tellico, lazarus, k3b and k9copy end up pulling a lot of other support files in. At this point, I still have to install the Java JRE, Eclipse and TED. I also have to get the scanning software working for my Canon All-In-One printer, but the end result so far is that all the programs run okay in the new O/S and the machine behaves pretty much as it did before.

One problem that I ran across was an application that is no longer being supported. I used Quanta Plus as my HTML editor, but it is no longer available. I installed Kompozer in its place, but I don't like it. It belongs to the "we know better than you what you want to do" class of software. You know - like Microsoft Windows. I will uninstall Kompozer and try Bluefish instead.

There was also a screw-up on my part. There is always at least one when I put a new O/S on my box. This time, I forgot that my appointment calendar was stored in a mySQL database. When I wiped out my root partition to install the new Linux distro, I also wiped out the appointment calendar. I am going to use Google Calendar for that stuff now.


 

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Monday, 25 June 2012

I got a phone call from my dad on Friday evening. Their Internet connection went down and when it came back up, all the machines reconnected except for my dad's.

From what he said, it sounds like the ISP support people screwed up his machine. Even though they knew he was using Ubuntu Linux, they had him open up a terminal and had him enter a bunch of commands. Just what he needed - support from someone who knew exactly zero about his operating system. So he asked me if I could help and said I'd try.

First thing we had to do was to get a connection icon in his upper tray, as his was missing. This is fairly easy - you right-click on the tray, then click on Add Panel. You then add the Notification Area to the tray.

Once he had the icon, I asked him to right-click on it and then click on Edit Connections. When that dialog came up, there were no connections at all, so we had to add one. All that requires is a MAC address for the device you want to connect to. I had him get that by going on another machine, opening a terminal and entering 'ifconfig'. He entered that, then made sure the 'Connect Automatically' and 'Available to all users' boxes were checked. Applying that caused a new connection to be created. Restarting the system caused the connection to be done and we were done.

I had not done that before, but it worked great. It's not like it's rocket science.


 

I went to the North Idaho Linux Users Group technical session on Saturday. I did that with the express intention of getting the camera on my laptop to work. Everything else is working, so I was anxious to get it running again.

First thing I tried was to boot using the live CD of Linux Mint 10 (64-bit) that came with the laptop. Turns out that nothing is wrong with the camera. It just doesn't work with the 32-bit version of Linux Mint 11. So I tried Linux Mint Maya (13) with Máte and it also worked. So I decided to install it. Since Máte is a clone of Gnome 2, that was a desirable thing to do for me.

I installed 32-bit Linux Mint Maya with Máte on my laptop on Sunday. I then re-installed all the programs I usually use on the laptop. Everything is working fine now.

I also installed 64-bit Linux Mint Maya with Máte on my quad-core desktop, and everything is working fine on it, too. I am thinking of installing it on this workstation, as it seems to work fine on the other boxes.


 

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Friday, 22 June 2012

I went to the mineral club meeting last night. There were a lot of people there, even though there usually isn't when summer rolls around. We had a really enthusiastic youngster there, too.

I reported on the show finances, and I ended up guessing on how much we made. It turns out the real amount was much larger than what I thought we made. I will have to correct that.


 

The Coeur d'Alene Ironman race is on Sunday. That means I won't be able to go anywhere on Sunday, as the bike route for the race goes on all the roads I could possibly use to get out of here to town. Maybe I should leave early on Sunday and go down to Emerald Creek and spend the night there.


 

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Thursday, 21 June 2012

I did car and trailer stuff yesterday. I went down and picked up some aluminum pieces for my teardrop trailer and then got some machine screws and silicon sealer for the parts. These new pieces will keep water out of the inside of the trailer when I am driving in the rain.

I also cleaned up the Plymouth and went over to the cruise-in at Burger Heaven in Rathdrum. Everyone that saw the new paint job was impressed and I think the consensus was that it looked good. I also met someone there who has just finished restoring a 1951 Cranbrook, so next week (weather permitting) we will get to see it and I can prod him for more info on where to get parts.


 

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Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Nothing to report this morning. I pretty much took the day off yesterday.


 

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Tuesday, 19 June 2012

I went to town yesterday to run some errands and I literally ran into four construction projects which delayed my errands. One is the ongoing project to straighten out Lancaster Road and I was prepared for that. Another was blocking my access to the local trailer dealer. I went around the block to come at the dealer from the west, and they had the road blocked in that direction, too. The blockage was 50 feet from the road for the dealer and those 50 feet were completely clear, but those officious jackass petty bureaucrats wouldn't let me through. I had to go way around to get to the dealer. Grrr.

On the way home, I figured I would avoid the Lancaster construction by going the only other way to my house from the south. And, of course, there was another construction project going on there, too. I don't know why Spring isn't called "Let's Block all the Roads for Construction Projects" instead.


 

I see that Microsoft is once more venturing outside their core competencies(?) into a market in which they have no experience. When will they learn? Why isn't this device called Zune II or Bob II? Why am I asking questions about stuff that don't matter to me even one little bit?


 

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Monday, 18 June 2012

I went to the Car d'Lane Car Show on Saturday. I would guess there were at least 250 cars there. I took pictures of 115 of them and posted them here. It was interesting to note that none of the people I know who have old cars were in the show. It seems that there are at least two levels of shows, and people tend to stay at their own level.

My Plymouth was not ready to be shown anywhere at that point. Here is what the car looked like before painting with most of the chrome removed:

I finished putting the chrome back on the car on Sunday. Here it is after painting and after I put the chrome back on it:

I definitely like how it looks now. I will take it to the weekly cruise-ins, but only when it stops raining. There is one tonight, but there is a 70% chance of rain, so I will wait until the Wednesday cruise-in.


 

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Friday, 15 June 2012

I found some photos I had not yet digitized, so I did that for most of them yesterday. When I got tired of that, I went over to Post Falls and got a haircut, then went on to my former place of employment to get some information about rolling over my 401K into an IRA.

When I got back home, I decided to mow the lawn. So, of course, while I was doing that, I got a phone call stating that the painting of my Plymouth was complete and I could come pick it up. I went over there (through Post Falls), paid for the paint job, then had the car towed back home. I spent a bit of time adding chrome back onto the car.

The Car d'Lane Car show and swap meet is today and tomorrow. My Plymouth won't be ready for that show, but I am going down today to the swap meet to look for some chrome trim. I will also go to the car show tomorrow.


 

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Thursday, 14 June 2012

Since it was raining most of the day, I took most of yesterday off. I spent time reading and backing up some DVDs. Other than that, nothing of note happened.


 

I check my email every morning, at the very least. I checked it all yesterday morning and removed all the messages from the spam mailbox. This morning, I had 175 spam messages. Something has to be done about this waste of bandwidth.


 

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Wednesday, 13 June 2012

I forgot how much fun it is to drive my Dodge Stealth. I took it down for an oil change yesterday, then drove it over to Post Falls to get some trim paint for my Plymouth. I had a great time driving it. It still runs well, even if it is 21 years old.

I used the trim paint to touch up some of the trim on the Plymouth. The front trim has a chrome piece that says 'Plymouth' and the lettering is supposed to be red. After 60 years, the lettering is now chrome-colored. Not any more.


 

A series of thunderstorms is marching through North Idaho and is raising havoc with my completion of outdoor projects. I am hoping that the ones we are currently experiencing will be the last for a while, so I can get on with the outdoor projects.


 

Frontier, our local telephone company is doing a DirectTV and is raising their basic rates without providing additional services. So I am currently investigating the feasibility of using VOIP instead of telephone land line. I'll let you know what I think.


 

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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

I worked mostly on outdoor stuff yesterday. I replaced the battery terminals on my Stealth. I hope that this will take care of the problems I have with the electrical system. After I recharged the battery, the car seemed to run fine. When I picked up the new battery terminals, I also picked up some assorted nuts and screws for when I will put the chrome back on the Plymouth.

I also did more work on the teardrop trailer. It is pretty much ready to run now. My garnet trip will probably be next week, as I need to go to the Car d'Lane auto swap and car show on Friday and Saturday.


 

For many years now, the only macroni and cheese I have had has been out of a box. Last night, I made baked macaroni and cheese from scratch. I've got to say that all those boxes should be put in a pile and burnt, because from scratch is the only way to go. Yum.


 

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Monday, 11 June 2012

I finished varnishing my teardrop trailer. I re-installed the mattress pads and the laundered sheets and blankets. The only thing left to do to the trailer is its yearly wheel bearings lubrication and it will be ready to use this year.

I am thinking of taking the trailer for an overnighter at Emerald Creek. That way I can dig for star garnets and not have to drive all the way home when I finish for the day.


 

I neglected to mention that our gem and mineral show last weekend had radio coverage. Mark Peterson, a local television reporter, did the coverage for KVNI radio, which is owned by the same people who own KXLY-TV (where he normally works). He was a great choice and did a great job with the coverage. I had an opportunity to talk with him, as he sat next to me at the front of the hall. You can see pictures of the event here. There is a picture of Mark on page 4.


 

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Friday, 8 June 2012

I worked on my teardrop trailer yesterday. I varnished as much as I could before it started raining again, then I sanded some areas that were suffering from mold. I have lots more varnishing to do, weather allowing. I also have to remount a galley drawer. It is currently mounted on slides attached to its sides, but the weight of stuff I put in the drawer has caused the slides to loosen. I am thinking I can remount the slides underneath the drawer, attaching them to the floor of the galley. That should work a lot better for the cast iron I put in the drawer.


 

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Thursday, 7 June 2012

I finished updating the teardrop trailer static web pages so they are now redirected to CMS pages. Anyone who has the old static web pages bookmarked will now be redirected to the new pages. While I was at it, I also redirected the static ebook web pages.


 

I finished up most of the financial paperwork related to the gem and mineral show. There are still three bills to pay, but we will still come out ahead. Looks like we will be able to sponsor a North Idaho College scholarship again this year.


 

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Wednesday, 6 June 2012

It was too wet outside to varnish the teardrop trailer. Instead, after I got back from my financial consultant, I finished up the work I was doing on converting static web pages to CMS pages. The BLOGical Sections link to Teardrop Trailer now goes to the new web page. I am also changing each of the static web pages to redirect to the new CMS web page, but that will take a lot of time to do that.


 

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Tuesday, 5 June 2012

I spent half the day yesterday doing the finances for the Gem and Mineral Show. It was a lot of money to count - lots of 20's, 1's and quarters. I have it all counted and deposited now, but I still have a lot of bills to pay for the show. I won't know for a couple of days how much we made on the show.

I still have some more paperwork to do for the mineral club, and I will do it today.


 

I am re-varnishing my teardrop trailer, which hasn't been done since I bought it new in 2003. I will be doing a little bit at a time, starting with the kitchen. There is a bit of water damage there I hope to arrest before I use the trailer this year.

If the rain and the appointment with my broker don't get in the way, I will get back to varnishing today.


 

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Monday, 4 June 2012

I spent Friday through Sunday at the Kootenai Fairgrounds, helping with the North Idaho Mineral Club's Gem and Mineral Show. It was a lot of hard work, and I was really sore at the end of each day.

We spent all day Friday doing setup. That included setting up dozens of tables for the dealers and putting skirts on them, setting up the kids games, helping the dealers set up their spaces, etc. We had a potluck at the end of the day, and I did a Dutch oven peach cobbler that went over very well.

Saturday, we took tickets from the public, sold grand prize tickets to them and I took care of the finances: making sure all the stations had money and digging up fives and tens when they ran out. After the show, we all went to the Top of China Buffet and had dinner. That was a lot of fun.

Sunday was much the same as Saturday, except there was also a two hour teardown at the end of the day and there was no dinner.

One thing that really frosts me: when we announce the end of the show and that all the customers should leave, there are always three or four that don't leave. There was one of those yesterday who stuck around for at least an hour after the close, and was wandering around while we were tearing things down. I don't like and don't trust people like that.


 

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Friday, 1 June 2012

I completed the conversion of a static web page slide show of teardrop trailer construction into a single CMS web page. I have several more web pages to do before I can remove the static teardrop content, though. I should finish all that up next week.


 

I also completed all the signs for the North Idaho Mineral Club's Gem, Mineral, Rock and Jewelry Show. Good thing, too, since we are doing the show setup today and I needed the signs for the setup. The show itself is open tomorrow from 9am to 5pm and continues through Sunday, when we go from 10am to 4pm.


 

The Queen of England celebrates the 60th year of her rule this year. When she was celebrating the 25th year in 1977, I was in London for a single day and got to see her, her husband, son and the Queen Mother in a parade. Happy anniversary.


 

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