Seven Trains Later

Both of the dogs were gone this morning, and I found the front gate open. I assumed the neighbor accidentally didn’t close it all the way, so I took the Onewheel around the block and found them not far away, running through the streets. As soon as they saw me, they came running and I just rode home with them right behind. I thought it was a pretty good response, but Muad’dib eventually disappeared again in the afternoon.

I spent the morning cleaning up the creeping vines on the fence, so the gate was much more accessible. Then I trimmed the rose bushes so they weren’t sticking out over the walkway. Our backyard neighbor Josh handed me a bag of homegrown blueberries from their garden and we traded phone numbers. I continued to sweat profusely as the sun got higher, so I came inside for a shower. After the shower, I heard a water leak alarm and found the water heater standing in a pan full of water.

The rest of the afternoon was a bit of a jumble. Dad came over to take a look at the tank with me, and we started draining it. I warmed up some leftover roast beef for lunch when Summer got home, and then Dad came back over so we could pull the old tank out. We really wanted to go tankless, but the earliest anyone could come even look at it was Monday. We figured we could deal with cold showers for a few days, but needed to replace the washer in the shutoff valve, so we went to Leonard’s for that. Then Dad had to leave for his old friend Dave’s art show.

Ronda and Steven were cooking at their new food truck, so we wanted to go support their soft-open. We took that food back home to eat, and then tried to catch Dad at the art show. He was already gone, but we wandered around the gallery with wide eyes. I told Summer he was good, but I don’t think she believed me when I told her how good.

After that, we went shopping for a couple things at the house, and we also looked for some better dog collars and leashes. Walmart didn’t have what we were looking for, so we went to T.J.Maxx and found a leash and a squeaky toy. Perhaps we should have waited, because Ross actually had a better selection. Five Below had nothing. It was all garbage.

We ran home and I met up with Dad again to try and pick up a super cheap tank heater that was on clearance at Lowe’s, but they couldn’t find it on the floor. We grabbed a plug for the hot water line instead, and sealed that off so we could at least turn on water to the house without it coming out uncontrollably from the wrong pipes. I tried to track down the faulty mixer that was letting cold water back up through the hot lines, but gave up about halfway through the house.

I was exhausted and sticky by the end of the day, but at least cold showers are on the table again, and I can wash my hands after petting the dogs. Hopefully they’ll stick around for a walk in the morning.

When it rains, it leaks some more.

I Found the Problem

I took the Onewheel to work again today so I could ride down the hallway to scan Chromebooks into inventory and lock up carts. We only had one room that was still missing a device, so I emailed Josh as the principal and Blake as my own direct report to find out whether he actually received an end-of-year checklist from the teacher. His response was a shocking and curt “it doesn’t matter,” which I think was his way of saying that it wasn’t any of my business. I shot back my own reply as professionally as I could, and we went back and forth for a bit before I ultimately walked into Blake’s office, who hadn’t actually read any of it by then. Possibly even more shocking was his reaction that it was just “his personality” and that I should see some of the emails he gets from him. In the end, there probably won’t really be a resolution, but at least I have my paperwork in order. It becomes more clear every day that their problems are absolutely systemic.

Becky invited me to the FACS kitchen for lunch where they had some slow cooker chili and some boiled hot dogs. It was an awesome lunch in its own right, but doubly so when compared to the old ramen I had stowed in my desk drawer.

I worked until my laptop died, and then decided not to work too late since I should probably be on-site the next day anyway. I don’t know if anyone else will be there for very long, but I figure I’ll be able to slip out pretty early. I chatted with Gary for a bit just before then, and we decided we’d meet up at Ridgewood Brothers for dinner.

I ran home to feed the fish first, and then I was going to see Summer at work, but in that moment she texted to say that she was already home. I spotted a plate-sized turtle walking along the road, seemingly unable to hop the curb, so I turned around to give him a lift into the grass before finally making it to the house where Eli and the girls were sitting in the living room watching gymnastics.

I changed clothes and met Gary at the restaurant where he was already chatting with Robert. He had a whole lot to say, and it was clear those guys just needed a break. I wish they’d just accept the free conversation with Summer about how to grow some positivity in their staff. She struggles too, but I think she could bring them some wisdom and experience. We eventually got in to eat, and then Grant showed up to close shop as Robert was leaving. He seemed to be doing a bit better, but they’re both just so tired.

We chatted for quite a while and then I headed back home to find them in the same spots watching the same gymnastics. I went outside to clean up a server I brought over from the old house, and then came in to hang out for a while. I forgot that I had to do some laundry, so I didn’t get it started until late, but I eventually made it to bed.

He’s right there.

Surprise Ginger

Mitch texted me this morning to see if I was available. He had driven up overnight on a whim to get out of town and wanted to see some friends, and had a free slot for me before he headed back home. He actually came out to the school to chat with me for a bit, which was pretty cool. He didn’t have a whole lot of time, and left just before lunch, when I ate some leftover “barbecue” that tasted more like slow-cooker pulled pork.

After work, I stopped by the old house and then headed home where Summer was making chicken tenderloins with some kind of coconut milk and lime sauce. It was pretty good, but between two things on the stove and a cake in the oven, the house got super hot. It would end up storming later, so the humidity was pretty smothering.

After we ate, we wasted the rest of the evening on the couch while Eaddie went to her room. I had hoped to feel a little more relaxed by the end of the night so I could be productive the rest of the weekend. I guess we’ll see how that goes.

Not a great start.

Free Wheeling

Traffic was horribly slow all day today. Things got worse when Kim texted that the internet was down. I didn’t even bother asking if she had done anything to investigate. It looked like a couple switches went down after I tried some upgrades yesterday, and doing more upgrades just caused more rolling outages. In the end, I still had two stubborn switches that wouldn’t respond and had to be power-cycled.

I was pretty burned out after that, but I eventually started tinkering with Modern Driver Management in SCCM. We’ll see how that goes tomorrow, but hopefully it makes things a bit easier. I ended the day with an empty office after Denice left pretty early to go to a ballgame.

After a slow drive home, I fed the fish and brought another end table home. Summer was working on the couch, so I went out on the Onewheel and met another guy around the corner that had an XR. He said he was out riding with his baby, hoping to run into me after seeing me around the neighborhood. We swapped boards for a bit while we chatted, and then I continued toward my parents’ house. I saw Wesley outside for the first time since we moved in, so I stopped to talk to him for quite a while. Long enough, in fact, that my board shut off. I didn’t notice, and when I got back on to leave, it flew right out from under me.

I finally made it to my parents’ house to see Mom, but Dad was on his way out for a church meeting. Mom was eating, so I didn’t stay long before heading home to finish the last burger. Summer worked until she went to bed. Eaddie got home late after watching a concert. I just did my best to wrap up so I could catch up on some sleep.

On a roll.


We all slept in this morning after I initially woke up just before five as Eaddie jokingly suggested as a departure time. We loaded up quickly, and Summer and I went in for some breakfast while Eaddie sat in the car. Then we met Dad at McDonald’s to pick up some steak, egg, and cheese bagels for Julie and Kevin. The kid at the register kept wanting to tell me too much information about his struggle finding the right picture on his employee register, or how he’d eat his Quarter Pounders with leftover gravy from the morning’s breakfast. Eaddie wanted to try one of the bagels, so we split one before we left.

Dad followed us while we kept getting stuck behind slow traffic, but eventually we passed most of it and got ahead of him. We stopped for a restroom break in Ozark, but didn’t need to charge. Eaddie had rehearsal at Tech after we got home. I unpacked and then left on the Onewheel to see Mom, and then ride the bagels over to Julie across town. She suggested I could go find Kevin at the airport, but I ended up a couple blocks over at my friend Kevin’s place.

Kevin hopped on the board and rode a little bit, but then wanted Matthi to try it out. That kid wasn’t afraid of anything, and immediately jumped on with reckless abandon. He got pretty good at it too, and then brought out a RipStik and a classic two-wheeled hoverboard to show me. Kevin and I ended up chatting for quite a while before I left and circled through the old house to feed the fish.

I didn’t quite make it back home before my battery died. I would have made it if I hadn’t circled through the Ridgewood Brothers’ parking lot, and nobody was there anyway. I had to walk most of the way up Honeysuckle, and the Onewheel got heavy fast. I got to the top of the hill and was able to ride it for a few more feet, but then had to walk it from the end of the street back to the house. It was the hardest workout I’ve had with the thing, but it was worth it.

I eventually had a shower after getting all sweaty carrying the Onewheel. Eaddie ate with Eli, so Summer and I had some leftover corned beef. She spent most of the evening like the rest of the weekend, not feeling great. I thought for sure I had seen something about not having school on Monday, but I don’t know where I hallucinated that, because there’s even a lunch menu. I’ll have to take another day off to take the Model 3 back to Tulsa, which makes me a bit sad, but I think it’ll all be worth it in the end.

I could ride you, but I’d have to charge.


The girls went to work and school this morning, so I had the morning to myself. I didn’t sleep in super late, but I got plenty of rest before getting up to finish some biscuits and gravy. Then I watched some YouTube before I took a shower and eventually got dressed to go out on the Onewheel.

I rode over to Ridgewood Brothers and saw Grant and Kyler for a bit. Then I started to ride toward the wash before I remembered Summer was out of town. I circled around and headed back toward home, but stopped near Sequoyah when I got a call from Tesla. They’re about ready to buy my car back, and wanted to schedule a drop-off during spring break. I told him we were traveling, and he said he would check on the paperwork dates to make sure we’d be okay.

While I was stopped, I got a text from Dustin asking if I was okay, or if I needed a ride. I continued back toward the house and then split off to see Dad for a moment. Then Summer finally made it back to the wash and I decided to run across town to see her. I stopped at Sonic along the way to try one of their “dirty” sodas. The cream and coconut were most pronounced, and then there was a whole lime thrown in, which was surprisingly subtle.

By the time I made it to the wash, I only had about 20% left. I let one of her employees try it out, and without any experience, he jumped on and just took off around the parking lot. It was pretty impressive. I hung out for a little bit, but Summer was going to be a while, so I took the Onewheel home in her car to charge.

Eaddie was home, but about to leave the house again. I chatted with her for a little bit before she left, and then waited for Summer to finish up at work. She wasn’t hungry and just wanted to go home and take a bath, so I took her to the house and rode the Onewheel back to Ridgewood for a little smokehouse treat. It got cold out, but I kept riding and went back to my parents’ house to pick up a couple drain plugs for the kitchen sink. By the time I made it home for the night, I had ridden about 15 miles, which more than doubled my personal best.

Summer was watching the new Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle until Eaddie made it home. Then we watched a few episodes of the The Office original UK series before the girls headed to bed. I fought my computer for a couple more hours, but eventually settled in.

That’s a lot of revolutions for such a little tire.

Slippery Dippery

We had some makeup testing today, so I didn’t feel super comfortable changing any more network configurations. I wasn’t super motivated to do anything at all, really. Kim wasn’t particularly useful, and Denice had guests in her closed office all day. I just passed the time. Slowly. With ham rollups for lunch.

I went straight home after work because Summer had dinner going. Eaddie and Eli were watching the new Cinderella movie while Summer barbecued chicken quarters. It was a nice dinner, but the chicken and green beans were both undercooked, and the potato salad was bland. I really don’t think she tries any of the food as she’s cooking, and then just sits down with everyone else at the table to find out for the first time how it tastes.

I put the larger pieces of chicken back on the grill and ate what I could, but I think I was hungrier after I ate than before I started. The kids left, and I went out on the Onewheel for a little while. My parents weren’t home, so I continued around to Ridgewood to see Grant for a minute.

Afterward, I floated through the neighborhood for a new path back home and thought I’d try the Waco Detention Basin Trail, which may not have been a path back at all. It also wasn’t dry. It was dark and completely unlit, and there was a layer of silt that I couldn’t see over the concrete trail. I narrowly escaped going down to the ground, but got a streak of mud up my jeans. I backtracked up to the road and made it home, but then rode over to my parents’ house to borrow a rat trap.

What I thought was a mouse yesterday looked a bit bigger on camera today, so I brought two larger traps home. I set them with some peanut butter, along with the little jar trap, and hoped I could catch something overnight. Summer was working late, but then I upset her with my own airing of grievances as she went to bed. I stayed up and did my load of laundry, periodically stepping out to listen to the rain.



Eaddie left early this morning for all-state weekend, and my school had a “winter break,” so kids were out and teachers were only there for parent-teacher conferences. Traffic was thin enough that I had a nearly uninhibited drive in to work, save for the last mile. Kim showed up late, and then disappeared around lunch time. I just kept working on SCCM and never saw her again.

I was pretty hungry when I left work since the cafeteria was closed, so I stopped by McDonald’s in Dardanelle for a Big Mac, then fed my fish, and picked up some fries afterward before stopping by the wash to see Summer. I finished those on the drive home, and then jumped on the Onewheel to get some float time before sundown.

I took some milk back to my parents’ house, then rode around to Gary’s house to chat with him for a minute. As I was leaving, I accidentally knocked my earbuds out of my pocket, and they both popped out of the charging case. I nearly rode over one of them before I noticed, but it seemed like only the case got scratched.

From there, I rode down to Ridgewood, but didn’t see anyone I knew. I circled the building, and then a kid named Kyron(?) chased me down on his Onewheel GT. We stopped and talked for just a few seconds because he wanted to see my board. Then we split off and I headed home.

My head cold got bad pretty quickly from there. I had body aches and a bit of a fever, so I cleaned up some leftovers, made some Theraflu, and went to bed before Summer even made it home.


One Wheel Keeps on Turning

Traffic was bad in Dardanelle this morning, but I was only a couple minutes late to work. Testing went without a hitch. Kim was out of the room a lot, but I was never quite sure what she was doing. I was pretty sure it wasn’t closing a bunch of work orders. Most of my work was pretty immaterial again, because the morning went by quickly, lunch time was loud, and then the afternoon gave way to more conversations about the impossibility of maintaining my department at my rate of pay.

I got permission for Johnny to come visit for a day so I can mentor him on some things. Then Ben called at the end of the day and we chatted for a while on the drive home. I stopped by the old house quickly to grab a couple more things while Summer was home early with Eaddie and had dinner ready. Clay walked by the house and stopped to talk to me some more, but didn’t keep me too long.

I was proud of Summer for creatively making some stir fry out of the tough ribs she baked the other day and some vegetables that I had prepped from our salmon night. Afterward, I went out on the Onewheel and fed the cat, and then decided to ride on down to Ridgewood Brothers to see if Grant was there. I got him and one of the other guys on the Onewheel for a bit, and then he sent me home with some apple crumble that was incredible.

Sensing some dire levels of stress, I got Summer to go back with me for some more dessert, and we got to step to the back of the restaurant and chat for a little bit more. Hopefully we made a meaningful difference. Eaddie spent most of the night in her room, and Summer went to bed as soon as we got back home. I stayed up a while longer, but felt the exhaustion roll in pretty hard.

The morning sun is rising. It’s kissing the day.


Eaddie left for all-region early this morning. Summer was out of bed super early after a work call, and I woke up pretty early myself, but laid in bed for a little while longer, unable to go back to sleep. I eventually got around and cleaned the kitchen a bit while Summer went to the gym. She didn’t stay long because she had to get Eli’s boutonniere from the flower shop. The kids came over around lunch time but weren’t hungry, and I eventually had a shower and had to drain the basement again.

We picked up my dad for the concert, and made it plenty early for the percussion ensemble before Eaddie’s band. The whole thing was about half an hour behind, so we were worried about the kids having to rush through pictures and dinner before the dance. We dropped Dad off at his house and then the kids met us at home to get ready.

We took a bunch of pictures, and then Eaddie refused to wear her fancy new dress to dinner or the dance, and wore her band dress instead. Once they left for dinner, I finished the eggplant soup. Then Summer and I went home so she could get ready to chaperone the dance. I stayed home and tinkered a bit, but didn’t actually get as much accomplished as I had hoped before everyone got back home.

The kids watched a little bit of TV before Eaddie took Eli home. Summer was already in bed by then, and I eventually wound down around midnight.

If you’re sumping rain, in your neighborhood; who you gonna call?