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Nightly Ramble: Closer, Yet

Yes, I know, I didn’t do a nightly ramble, last night.  Actually that little respite was provided by my ISP.  Turns out, the whole neighborhood was without connectivity.  I know; I tried looking around on some of the neighbors unprotected wireless networks.  Don’t tell them, OK?

Anyway, by the time they managed to get the thing going, again, I was too tired to bother.  I’m actually a little annoyed, because it put me off my groove. (Yeah, Billy, I hear ya). At least it didn’t take much to fall back in, once I got things going on the LAN.

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What other project that came up tonight, is a LaserJet printer.  We managed to find an old LaserJet 5 for under a hun, with only 50,000 prints on it. Trust me, for that battleship, that’s around the block.  The printer itself, is an old friend; the at least the design is… at my last job, I built one of a scrap parts so that I’d have something nice to print on.  Initially there was some resistance from the management, but when they saw the finished product they were amazed I was able to do that in less than a couple of hours.  So, I don’t think I’m going to have a great deal in the way of maintenance problems with this thing.

The reason we got the LaserJet, it is actually quite simple; the Inkjets are too expensive and break down too often.  toner, it really is going to cost me all that much, given that I have about 15lbs. of it left over from when I was working in a place that manufactured it.
With the several computers, and the business class printer, it’s beginning to look a little too much like an office in my living room.  But, whatever.  And, no, I have not allowed the kids to put their computers into their own bedrooms, for several reasons.  The first is longer Cat 5 runs are more money. and, it’s a little easier to provide supervision when their there in the living room as opposed to in some other place.  Also, it saves a lot of conversation from one end of the house to the other when one of them pops up with “Dad, how do you do this?”

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Closer yet… to what, you ask? Why, it’s closer to Christmas, of course.

There is Christmas shopping still to be done , but we’re in better shape this year at this stage, than we have been in many years.

In going to the stores, and in driving around the last couple of evening’s I’ve noticed something; There’s a lot more around in the way of Christmas lights.  Even more so than the last week.  I suspect that there’s a number of people taking advantage of the warmer weather put out ever more lighting.

There is such a thing as taking a too far, however.  A house around the corner, and up the street a couple of blocks, burned down the other night.  Rumor has it, that the fire started in the fuse box.  The pattern of damage that I see would be consistent with that happening , since the heaviest damage is on that corner of the house that the gas and electric was fed.  Of course, they could be seen from space with all the Christmas lights they head out front.  While there were quite as many lights going on there as there wasn’t some of the pictures I showed you over the last weekend, my guess is is that their load center simply wasn’t up for the drill.  A sad happening, and to say the least, rotten timing.

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I finally got BitsBox back from the shop.  The problem; a bad thermostat.

It’s annoying; Time was when a problem like that would pop up you could pretty generally diagnosing to self and have it running again in no time. That happened with the 70 Malibu I had some years ago.  Barnett my arm all the hell, but I got a very quick diagnosis of it.  In this case, and repair took the grand total a day and a half.  See, the problem is, of electronics that they’ve been tacking on cars and trucks lately.  They tend to mask real symptoms in the car, and a lot of times don’t give you a clear diagnosis of what the problem is when they show up.

One of the problems with keeping birds, and cats, is that both spent an awful lot of their time trying to mask what problems they have, so they don’t appear to be vulnerable.  So it is with the automobile of today.  All those electronics are supposedly to increase the reliability, supposedly.  Trouble is, they’d don’t help you to fix the problem, many times, and this was one such situation.  I wonder how many people are suffering with the same kind of problems with their automobiles; all in the name of progress.

I mean, look, I make my living in a technology business.  I’ve been fairly close on the cutting edge of computer technology for the last twenty years, now.  It’s what I do. I’m hardly the neophyte type.  And yet in this case I wonder how much it’s cost us. In this case, a day and a half worth of diagnosis , for a faulty $25.00 part.  And of course, the gas mileage has been terrible for the last couple of months while I tried to sort the problem out.  (sigh)

Ah, well, it’s running OK now.  And we may actually do a road trip sometime before the end of the year.  Not sure on that one, just yet.

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By mere chance, I am reminded that this is the eighth anniversary of Bill Clinton’s impeachment.  And of course, over a places like the Democratic Underground and the Daily Kos, they are contemplating revenge. Drooling uncontrollably over the prospect, in fact.  However;Given the lack of organization that I see on the left, under Ms. Polozzi, I have my doubts that we’re going to be seeing the democrats agreeing on lunch, much less taking that kind of action against a sitting president.  And, whatever happened to the idea of actually taking care of the business of the people?  Seems that after being elected, they forgot all about those promises.  Given the number promises Bill Clinton himself forgot almost immediately upon buying Monica her knee pads, there seems to be something of a pattern brewing here.

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I notice that the first steel beam of Freedom Tower went into place today.  I’m pleased to see it go in, but I’m annoyed to see how accurate my description of the situation was a couple of years ago, when I commented that we’d have forgotten all about what happened on 9/11 to take the original building out in the first place before the first beam was laid in its replacement.