Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mechanical Ordeals

AKA Long Elaborate Post About Nothing

[Note: I was born to watch and assist other people to fix things, not to do it myself! In fact, the best place for me when something needs to be fixed, is in the other room! I always have the wrong tools or else try to turn screws and bolts the wrong way or otherwise fail to figure out how to disassemble or reassemble some damn thing until the second, third, or fourth attempt! That said, here is my latest plebian tale of mechanical incompetence and the resulting brain damage!]

Here's something dopey, but practical. My mother's remote control for her garage door opener gradually got worse until it was nearly dead. Sometimes it would work, but not on a predictable schedule. It got to where she'd walk around the house and come in the back door. Then she'd open the door from inside using the wired control on the wall. I searched around town for a "universal", but it appears that there's no such thing to be found easily (as with TV remote controls). At any rate, my luck was bad. Sears had several, but they appeared to only be "universal" for a variety of their own door openers! Unfortunately, Mother's unit was a Ward's from back when they still had such things. I got sick of looking around town and searched for it on the Internet. Almost immediately I found a bunch of them. The only words I'd ever seen on the remote control didn't say "Ward" or anything familiar; it said "Linear"!

"Now what the hell is Linear?!" I thought.

Though that garage door opener (and the remote) must be 2 or 3 decades old, I promptly found "Linear" remotes everywhere on the Internet! I read up on it and it described something fairly familiar, talking about on and off switches under the battery cover. I had a printer long ago that had to have what they called "dip" switches turned on and off. I set it once and never touched it again, so I couldn't be absolutely confident about the ease of ordering one of these and getting it to work. But I just fucking did it.

The remote was cheap to start with, only $11.95 but then there was postage to pay and that made it 17.95!!! Not too bad. It would be worth it if it worked! I ordered it just a few days ago and it came in the mail today. With my usual mechanical ineptitude, I took half an hour to figure it out. I had trouble loosening the Phillips screw that held the clip to the unit, but eventually I got it loose enough to get it out of the way and could open the battery cover. I didn't expect to see a battery in it, so that was gravy, I guess. I looked at the switches and could see them pretty well. They were all in the "off" position. When I put the old remote beside the new one, I began to panic. I don't know why anyone would have had cause to change those switches more than once, but they appeared worn or dingy--at any rate, somewhat hard to see whether the tiny switches were up or down. Were they "on" or "off"? My depth perception was not good enough! Eventually I stopped trying to look at the switches straight on. I was more nearly able to see them when I looked at them from extreme left or extreme right. I didn't get them all right at first; I felt sort of panicked when the first two switches proved to be non-functioning. More staring at the tiny switches resulted in my concluding that there were FOUR switches in the on position. So I copied that, punched the button, and I could hear the garage door opening while I was still in the house! Hallelujah!

Gatehouse Supplies turned out to be prompt, efficient, and their product must have been blessed by God. My usual experience of mechanical stuff had me prepared to find it already broken or incomprehensible or the wrong item was sent, or all three--but it was Okay! I guess I'm just always amazed when anything anywhere works as it was intended. I don't know if it's a product of my negative thinking or of my experience; it's too goddamn late in life to bother with figuring it out. I'll just have to plug along...

Pornographic Wizard

"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!"

Somebody better write me or entertain me; otherwise, I'll write a pornographic story with you as the star. You'll be famous for doing things with donkeys--how's that strike you? I of course will be the dignified bearded fat man doing god-knows-what behind the curtain.

In fact, I'm doing it now, and you can't stop me!!!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

To Nude Or Not To Nude?

Call The Nude Police!

How many extra counter hits will I get if I mention that I'll be appearing here nude soon? How many if I announce that your skinny high school French teacher will be appearing nude next week? How many if I just work the word "nude" into my post as many times as possible today? Can you say "lazy lout", boys and girls?

19th Nervous Breakdown!

Bertrand Russell: "One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important."

Sunday, January 27, 2008

All The News That Fits?


I've been reading all the Internet News and it seems to me a consensus has been reached that persistence of life is what leads inexorably to sickness and death. No one has been able to disprove it so far, anyway! Shazam!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

What Was Her Name?

maybe I'd like her better
if she just stayed further away.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Personally, I'm Still A Snake!

From the school of nitwit quotes comes the following...

Richard Gere: "I know who I am. No one else knows who I am. If I was a giraffe, and someone said I was a snake, I'd think, no, actually I'm a giraffe."

Monday, January 21, 2008

About Johnny Cash

In Love With A Dead Women, Oh My My

Sandy Denny

Speaking of other good YouTube recordings, take a listen to and a look at this recording of Sandy Denny's Who Knows Where The Time Goes and see if it doesn't make you bite your tongue that she died in 1978 at the age of 31.

It blows me away.

Who Knows Where The Time Goes

Across the evening sky, all the birds are leaving
But how can they know it's time for them to go?
Before the winter fire, I will still be dreaming
I have no thought of time
For who knows where the time goes?
Who knows where the time goes?
Sad, deserted shore, your fickle friends are leaving
Ah, but then you know it's time for them to go
But I will still be here, I have no thought of leaving
I do not count the time
For who knows where the time goes?
Who knows where the time goes?
And I am not alone while my love is near me
I know it will be so until it's time to go
So come the storms of winter and then the birds in spring again
I have no fear of time
For who knows how my love grows?
And who knows where the time goes?

Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Usual Odd Sequence

I don't guess there is much in my life that doesn't arise due to some odd or unexpected sequence. It's not very often that an idea or pursuit springs full-blown into my mind. A few weeks ago, I was aimlessly surfing the tv channels when I came across a taped version of the Johnny Cash Visionary Award (from 2006) being presented to Kris Kristofferson. I'm not even sure who chose him, but the award was being presented by Johnny Cash's musician daughter Roseanne. Kris was a friend of Cash's for some decades, so it was an emotional event for all concerned. He teased Roseanne Cash that she better not cry or he'd start crying, too. He then gave an acceptance speech which was mostly praise of Johnny Cash and the pleasure he'd had in becoming friends with one of his idols. I thought it was odd how he ended it by remarking that "Bob Dylan said it the best. He said that John was like the North Star: You could guide your ship by him."

Later, I ran across an article on the Internet which described that event and that quote and I got curious as to where or when Dylan made that remark. Or was it a lyric to some song? Dylan only has a million or so songs, you never know when you might have missed one. So I Googled "Dylan Cash north", but I didn't turn up that quote. Instead I found a Youtube version of the two of them singing Dylan's "Girl From The North Country". Nice, and I'd never heard it. In fact I then found a seemingly endless list of Youtube recordings of them either singing or conversing together. Some were well-done, some weren't, but it made me wonder why there wasn't more effort to make a "real" album. Dunno. In any case, I listened to them and to some of Dylan's very old "bootleg" or "unreleased" recordings until my mind turned to mush. Maybe I'll listen some more later, but for now I'm wasted.

I find most of Youtube a vast wasteland, and even when I found something I was especially interested in, the Youtube quality only sometimes exceeds shitty. But it did reveal a segment of things I hadn't considered, which is simply that a great deal of what's been rejected when it was first recorded may now seem like Gold or at least matters of interest to fans whose idols are fading or dead. So maybe Youtube is not the waste of time I'd been thinking, though it did distract me from finding out about that damn quote I started out searching the web for! It just doesn't "Google", I guess.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Friday, January 18, 2008

Put Up Your Dukes, You Damn Dirty Mice!

Saith The Rat!

Or read this, whichever makes you come first!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Oh, Don't Be A Pig!

I'd like a fluorescent ham sandwich, please.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Shrinking And Growing

When I first got terribly sick with diabetes, etc. more than two years ago, I began to shrink. Lose weight, I mean. At 135 or so, I was about 100 lbs. shy of my former fat self. Some return to health brought me back up to about 160, and that seemed like a good weight to be. For one thing I ended up with a lot of new pants and shirts that fit me like that. But lately I got even fatter, and whether that has anything to do with more good health, one has to doubt! Nonetheless it's real.

This week I decided to give in to it and get some cheap pants or jeans at the local Good Will store. I'd gotten to where I only had 2 or 3 pairs that fit me. But I wore myself out in that store--every time I found the right width, it was the wrong length! Today I went to another nearby town and wore myself out equally searching through their junk. I wish they'd mark those pants for sizes before they hang them up because this way the hangers have to be removed in order to find the size label IF the size label is still there! (And some of those damn hangers need to be thrown away--I got tired of picking up items that fell to the floor when I merely brushed my hands against them. At first, I tried to be a good customer and rehang them, but that's when you discover that they're crappy hangers--probably some damn CEO saving pennies by not allowing old ones to be discarded! Sorry shit. I finally gave up after I'd worked as hard and as well as I could. Later I went to Wal*Mart and spent a fortune (comparably) on three new pants and a jacket. Maybe I'll go back to Good Will some day, but why the hell would it be very soon when I now have clothing to fit a thin, a regular, a fat, and a real fat man?!

I think I'll go watch TV and gobble something now! Know what I mean?


various Internet definitions of TREPIDATION:

1. tremulous fear, alarm, or agitation; perturbation.
2. trembling or quivering movement; tremor.

1. archaic : a tremulous motion : tremor
2. timorous uncertain agitation : apprehension

Example: trepidation about starting a new job.


Fall behind me, Satan! Or something to that effect...

Monday, January 14, 2008

Going North Or Going South?

M. C. Escher: "My work is a game, a very serious game."

Don't Know Much About Race Cars, But...

Mario Andretti; "If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough"

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Intelligent Post, Approximately

Hell's a poppin' over at "Flailing Away With Frustrated" in a post that may or may not be called, "13 Something"! I can never keep track. (Psst! He writes these things because he's lazy! I steal them for the same reason!)

Addendum: Previously I restricted myself to just stealing his ideas--this time I stole it whole-hog! If I had a conscience, it would bother me a great deal--but I don't have one!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

One Of The Best Books!

Helene Hanff: "If you happen to pass by 84, Charing Cross Road, kiss it for me. I owe it so much."

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Positive and Negative

Over the short haul, my two polls at MFBQ tend to show an approximate 25% negative number in both cases. I'm surprised that the numbers have been that good, but I better not hold my breath about it! If the numbers start going south, I'll dissolve the damn polls and claim it was a Blogger glitch! Anyone around here would believe a story like that!

Blue Crankus Whatever!

Over at MFBQ, I have nothing better to do, so I did this (below)just to more clearly separate posts:

The new blue


Long may your freak flag fly free.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008


I wish everyone hadn't so disappeared,
That only I had the nasty habit
Of sticking his head up his ass--and maybe not even me!
We grow apart, by littles or a lot,
And even just a little effort
Becomes Too Much
Once enough time has passed.

One side or the other or both
Might make a huge effort, but the returns
Would be--what?--not much. We'd glow a while,
And then return to that dismal state
Of not needing anything extra or being needed as such, either.

Our lives are full, too full--
But full of what? TV and disease,
Nasty neighbors across the street--
All I know of them is their yapping dogs,
And all they know of me is they will never know me?

It's hard to know or care, either way,
But if we have anything going on at all,
We cannot pause or stretch ourselves
Enough to ever reach back
Across time or that deadly river Styx
Or quell those earthen rivals or silence deadly forums.

It's all true, it's all false,
It's all a great grief and all a great relief.
It's nothing we didn't mean
And nothing that meant very much,
Oh, Jesus, give us a goddamned speeding ticket
And shut us down; take away the car,
Throw away the keys! No one can be trusted,
Can't you see? This is a long slow deadly path
And whether there is admiration or a furor
Or else a menacing hue and cry,
We still are not subject to sense, but only to sensations--
We submit to it all while whining or bragging about Hubris
And that all we do is achieve this tilting status,
How on and on we go...

Monday, January 07, 2008

What'd He Say That For?!

Aristotle Compa├▒ero Elvis Gatsby: Everything is part of the traffic jam, except those things that are part of the ennui.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Who Invited You?

Good late morning, you drebus drebjus! The day's half gone and I'm not even sure that I buttoned my pants yet... I'd like a piece of raisin bread, but will have to settle for a sugar-free oatmeal raisin cookie. Not bad, actually... Oh, yeah, I said that before. But I figure some of you weren't listening.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

A Perfect Zinger At Parties

Cullen Hightower: "Saying what we think gives us a wider conversational range than saying what we know."