Unbox Therapy

I woke up pretty early today, and it was warm enough in bed all night that it didn’t feel cold to be wandering around the house. I played my daily puzzles on the couch until Summer got up, and then I made myself a coffee. I took that with me as I set up the Steam Deck in the sunroom, where Summer showed me that one of my plants had leaked water on the table, so I had to clean that up.

Summer went to the gym and I put on some music while I did the dishes and started going through boxes to unpack and arrange some things. I had a shower, and then fixed the bedroom door into the nook where the screws were stripped out of the hinges, and also the spring-loaded pegs that keep the sunroom doors shut. For a brief moment I thought I might go out on the Onewheel for a bit, but it seemed really cold.

I had a burger in the afternoon, and then kept picking at random things. Eaddie was at a robotics tournament all day, so Summer and I settled down to watch John Mulaney & the Sack Lunch Bunch. Eaddie got home partway through that, but then left for a while longer before coming home and going to her room for the night. After the show, Summer went to bed and I watched Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. The Spider-Verse movies are incredible, and it’s a shame Sony hasn’t been able to really nail any of their other Marvel properties the same way.

When I go home, I stay off 285


I had a super bizarro dream last night, in which I was somewhere with some people and also Elon Musk. I was talking to him, and though I was supposed to go do things with the other people, Elon invited me to go to somewhere in Arizona to see or do something. Whatever it was, it was urgent, and he said we had to pack and leave immediately by car. After going back and forth and deciding that it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I loaded up for the 19 hour drive, and he handed me a burner flip phone to contact him, since he obviously didn’t give out his real phone number to anyone. Then I questioned whether he had a jet that could get us there faster.

That was the end of the weird, anxiety-ridden dream, and then I got up for work. It wasn’t quite as cold or rainy, but it was really windy for most of the day. I spent a good chunk of it trying to get a couple old, but barely-used laptops ready to give to a teacher that doesn’t have a clue how to use them with her students. As soon as she said she wanted an old, decrepit laptop with admin accounts on Windows, Linux, or MacOS, I had to roll my eyes.

I eventually had to meet with Blake and discussed more of the same, with regard to her needs to fulfill the requirements for a grant. I wish she would just stick with learning how to do the very fundamentals of her job instead of continually biting off more than she can chew.

Kim spent the entire day fretting about whether she would have to pay a deposit on utilities for the new house. I got pretty frustrated that she wouldn’t just shut up and get it done, and every time she called to talk to some poor representative over the phone, I had flashbacks of some of the worst customer interactions I had at the call center.

I left work a little bit late just because I had a hunch on unlocking an iPad that was brought to me quite a while back. I made it back to town quickly to feed the fish and load a trunk load from the old house. Then I went by Taco John’s for a bunch of tacos because Summer was home from work, and Eaddie was bringing someone over to study.

Summer and I finished eating before the girls got there, and then I’m not sure how much school work they completed between all the giggles. I Onewheeled over to my parents’ house in the dark to get some Liquid Wrench, but I wasn’t quite sure how well that would work either. I think the actual point where the parts are fused together may not be connected to the hole where the bolt goes.

After that, Eaddie took her friend home and things wound down pretty quickly. I played a couple days on Oxygen Not Included, and then dawdled until bedtime.

Hang ten?

Tear a Faucet

I planned to leave the second faucet alone for the time being, but having the rubber washer in the aerator break apart kind of bumped that up in priority. Luckily I was still prepared with the extra faucet, and it was a relatively easy install apart from the lack of space to get under the sink. I unearthed, for probably the fifth time in our relationship, a ton of vitamins that Summer had been hoarding under the sink, and set them out for consumption. I won’t be able to test the sink for leaks until the silicone dries, but I feel reasonably confident about it.

After I finished the sink, I made some burritos for lunch, and then Eaddie left for Eli’s for most of the day. I had a long shower and moved some more things around the house before deciding to take a break and get back on the Onewheel. Dad took one of the stray cats to the vet, but I got to their house just as Mom got home from work. I rode around the block a few times and practiced carving into some turns a bit, and Dad got home shortly after that. It got cold fast, so I rode on home in time to get dinner started for Summer.

I cooked some rice and warmed up some steak and veggies. Then we watched a Nate Bargatze special on Netflix. Eaddie got home late, but Summer and I had already wound down for bed. It didn’t seem like I did a ton today, but I was beat.

You know it when you see it. You know it when it’s there. Like Michael Jackson, “Thriller.” Like Farrah Fawcett hair.

Ode to Toilet

I felt like I just banged my head against the wall all day long. I hardly left my office, and didn’t even take a lunch, snacking a bit and sipping a late Soylent. I just couldn’t figure out why one of my new desktops wouldn’t image, or why two of my laptops won’t wake up from sleep mode. I ultimately made my way to the shop for the last hour of the day so I could chat with Gary about it, and ended up leaving the computer there to try again tomorrow morning.

When I left work, I went by my parents’ house and finished up some eggplant soup before Dad came over to look at my toilet. The closet flange was just too big for the pipe, but we didn’t want to chip out the foundation to fix the poor build. We went to Lowe’s and decided to try a non-wax seal first, but it ended up being too small to fill the void. It took another trip to get two wax seals to fill in the gap. We ended up replacing the rest of the components as well since we already had everything torn apart anyway. It took too long, and it was pretty unpleasant, but we finally got it all back in place.

As I finally got to wind down, I saw a whole team of guys playing Overwatch, so I stayed up a little late and joined in for a couple rounds before bed.

I don’t have time for toilet humor.

Deep Diving

I didn’t really have anything new come in today, so I got to spend my time working on some older work. I started at the arena messing with one of their Crestron iPads. Then I tinkered around in Group Policy for a while because I couldn’t figure out why a printer wouldn’t deploy properly. I ended up heading back to the shop, but lunchtime snuck up on me. Gary and Heather were going to Taco Villa, so I tagged along and we brought food back to the shop. Then Gary helped me pick through my Group Policy issue. It all came down to a rogue space in the share name of the device.

Back at the high school, I finally got the Crestron app working after receiving a call back from our vendor. Then I ended the day setting up a bunch of computers in the field house. Autumn and her friend were at the high school for the Harlem Globetrotters, but Summer came to get them and I just went home.

Dad and I talked a bit more about my clogged drain pipe this morning, so I dug out an old, long piece of aluminum to shove down the hole. I poured some more boiling water down the hole to fill it up, and then shoved the stick down as far as I could go. It bent around the angled pipe almost perfectly, and I managed to clear the drain. I still wasn’t sure if there were any roots inside it, and the closet flange was still offset on the pipe, so I left it for another day. I ran by Lowe’s to check out some parts to fix it, and to pick up a windchime on clearance.

Heather had told me during lunch that the Globetrotters event was free for employees, so I tried going out there to check it out. There was a huge line of people, and none of the other employees I talked to knew anything about it being free or even discounted. I wasn’t even aware that it was a charity event, so that made me feel even less good about trying to get in. I ended up going home and doing more research on toilet repairs until bedtime.

Still not hard. Just gross.

Rooting For You

We started testing today, so it was pretty quiet. It sprinkled for most of the day too, so I didn’t make it down to the field house. Gary had a few minutes to call me and help with some things I had been tinkering with, and I think I learned a bit, and maybe even proved myself a little.

I took an early lunch to meet Ronda, Steven, and a coworker of his at Ruby Tuesday for $5 salads. It was pretty quiet there today, but it’s possible that was just due to how early we were. I went by the shop for a little bit afterward, then went back to the high school in the rain.

I guess I was a bit too ambitious, because I didn’t quite finish all I wanted to before quitting time. I actually ended up staying pretty late, fighting with a replacement computer I deployed. I actually didn’t even finish, so I’ll have to check on it in the morning as well.

Dad left me a big, flat drain tape to run up under the house, so I met Summer at home to see what we could do. The girls sat in the car the whole time because I don’t think they realized how long it was going to take me. I ran the snake all the way up the sewer pipe without too much trouble, so I had to coil it all back up and go down from the inside of the house. It wasn’t too difficult in spite of how gross the toilet mounting bolts looked. They were so rusted that I could just about pull the whole thing straight up.

With the toilet out of the way, I could see a bright orange root snaking around the drain. Inside was a literal wall of cat poop, completely blocking the pipe. Water could only seep out the drain, and a lot of that was probably my fault for flushing dry cat poop out of the litter box. I’m about at the point that I’m ready to quit using that half-broken automatic CatGenie and go back to a regular box. I called Dad, and we decided to get Roto-Rooter back out to properly snake the drain.

I spent the rest of the evening cleaning up a bit, then went to Summer’s for the evening. All the extra work running around the house made me hungry, so I cleaned up some random leftovers and eventually made it to bed.

Well, shit.

Sink Some Time Into Something

Jason started us off with a pretty lazy morning. I didn’t hear it, but I was assigned to pull some cable with Allen at Sequoyah. The line was supposed to already be there, but needed to be re-routed through the cafeteria. We found the coiled up cable without too much trouble, but the ceilings were high and even our longest ladder from the shop wasn’t tall enough to be of any use at all. To get started, I attached the tone generator on the end we had, then went to the closet to find the other end. I spent 10 or 15 minutes going through the nest of cables coming into that tiny switch closet, but couldn’t find it. When I went back to the other end, Allen had unhooked the tone generator and started trying to route the cable. He said he thought I went to the bathroom, even though he watched me hook up the tone generator and test that we had a tone coming through the line.

Once we got the tone generator back on the line, both of us went back to the closet and still couldn’t find a tone, so I started poking around in the ceiling and ultimately found where the line had been cut just inside the hallway, less than 20 feet from where we needed it to be. Allen wanted to run an extension from another drop in a nearby closet, but I refused. I traced the line back to see what else I could do, and then we took everything back to the shop for lunch.

Gary, Heather, Zach, and I walked to Smackin’ Wings and Things for the Philly cheesesteak fries. It took them half an hour to get our food to us, which was pretty typical. I didn’t really care much for the special, and it didn’t feel quite as loaded as anything I’ve had there before. I finished it just because it wouldn’t have been any better reheated, but I walked out filled with more regret than fries.

After lunch, I stayed at the shop and re-imaged the four computers Jason imaged for me because he used the 2016 LTSB version instead of the newer 2019 LTSC. I guess maybe he had forgotten that none of our Adobe licenses are compatible with the 2016 release, but he got really snippy and ridiculous when I told him what I was doing. As soon as I told him I’d just deliver them myself, he and Allen disappeared as if by magic, to I know not where.

When everyone left, I delivered my computers to the high school and headed home. My new bathroom faucets came in, so I decided to be handy and start on the replacement project since the one in my master bathroom had gotten to leaking quite badly. I had just barely gotten started when Summer arrived with Eaddie. Autumn was staying with her grandmother so she could finish her dress for the dance tomorrow. The remaining three of us headed to Lowe’s for some supply hoses and silicone. I ended up spending about three times as much on hoses as I wanted, but they didn’t have anything cheaper than the stainless steel braided lines.

We ended the evening with a late dinner at New China, and then headed home where I continued my work in the bathroom. The girls seemed pretty tired and passed out kind of early, but it took me a few more hours to break out all the old corroded faucets. I managed to get everything in place though, and I didn’t appear to have any water leaks. The silicone needs 12 hours to cure, so I won’t get to actually test the faucets until tomorrow. At least the spare bathroom won’t be as difficult since it already has new supply lines that aren’t rigid copper.

The more I tear apart, the less mystical it all seems. I may fix my bathroom yet…