Day by Day cartoon

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Shop update-

Noah and I finished installing the roof panels this morning. We had 4 panels left off last night on account of darkness, so we finished the job today. And we got the open ends covered up wih plastic just minutes before the cold front arrived and the thunderstorms began.

After that, I had a shower, a coffee and read for an hour or so before setting down to watch tv with the rest of the family.

Tomorrow Noah's going to help me rehang the 8 foot light mounts before heading back towards Colorado. And if the weather is tolerable, I can install my skylights.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

How I spent my Saturday-

It has been a busy Saturday. Today was the day the new trusses and roof went onto my shop. I know I talk about this shop all the time, as if its some marvelous man-cave of tool shop delights- and I do love my shop, but if you don't know, it is a rather humble workshop. The first picture tonight is what it looked like as I began tearing off the old roof. As you can see, it was a single, (much too shallow pitch) roofed shop.

Today, my buddy Loc and son Noah helped me set the new trusses. That's me with the hat and Loc trying to figure out how everything needed to be tied together. These new roofs don't come with instructions except those I could find on the internet, so it took some figuring out.

Here's the new trusses all set in place.

Everything is looking good so far.

We didn't get all the OSB sheeting up before darkness fell tonight. We did get most of the sheets up but had to quit and staple up some plastic to keep out the pending rain.

Tonight, after pasta dinner and a shower and a couple ounces of vodka and some Motrin, I'm feeling pretty good and I'm extremely pleased with today's accomplishments. We got a lot done and everything looks good.

Depending on the weather tommorrow, Noah and I should be able to finish the OSB roofing. If it rains, as the guessers are predicting, the work will have to wait. There's lots to be done still, new ends to fill in the peaks and to remove the old, angled line of the previous roof, the closets on the door end will have to be rebuilt and re-roofed, there are trim boards to be reinstalled or replaced and just a ton of things to be accomplished before my humble shop is all back to normal.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

LawDog finally tells the tale

of the pink gorilla suit! With spats and a top hat!

If you don't read LawDog all the time, you really should because he writes with a style that I last encountered reading Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas with the difference that you can believe LawDog's telling the truth.

He has promised to tell this tale for quite a while now and he finally spills the hilarity, so this definitely requires that you move any liquids away from your keyboard or monitoe while reading it.

This construction job is hard work!

Today I spent 7 full hours wrenching the old rafters out of the top of my shop. Actually, I spent a full hour picking up and moving the sheeting that I removed yesterday out to Leonard's trailer and I had to take 1 trip to Lowes to replace the just-bought scroll saw that quit while I was on a ladder.

But the rest of the time, I was working- most of it on a ladder, cutting and prying out the 2X6s that were nailed in through the ends between each rafter. Then I got most of the rafters pried up and I managed to get 3 of the 13 nailed on their sides in between the places the new trusses will be installed. I figured out all by myself that removing all the rafters- you know those pieces that tie together both walls of the shop might just be a bad idea. So I'm laying the removed rafters on top of the walls, in between the spaces where I removed them, and using them to hold everything together.

But its been nearly 7 hours of standing on a ladder, or moving the ladder, or cutting out the 2X6s or picking up my messes and I'm worn out- completely out!

And I'm still taking things apart... the improvements haven't even started yet!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

I got all the roof off today...

Its taken a few hours and some pounding and prying and 2 showers but all the sheeting is off the roof tonite! The trusses have been delivered and are awaiting some help for me to get them slung up. I still need to get the old rafters out of the way and it will take a few hours for me to pull all those nails but things are coming along.

I got a lot of work done today!

The BSU had a follow-up appointment for her eye surgery and everything seems perfect. She was able to see the eye chart better than the Doc expected. She has a few more days before everything is back to normal and she is having some pain that the Doc prescribed her some heavy meds for. But otherwise, this is working out well.

Monday, August 25, 2008

The BSU can see tonight, without her eyeglasses!

That's right, today she had her PRK laser corrective eye surgery. She's wearing plastic eye covers and putting in drops to quell the itching but she's done. And pretty happy so far. Because of the type of surgery, her eyes are going to be very scratchy and hurting for a few days but she has some pain meds to help with the worst of it.

And I watched the entire process on the TV in the waiting area. Its pretty weird but she was done in under 10 minutes and walked out able to see the number of fingers I was holding up.

Maybe- maybe I'll do it someday. Right now, call me undecided.

My roof trusses arrive tomorrow!

And I still have so much to accomplish before I am ready for them! Hooray!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Could there be a better candidate?

I don't think so!

I do call dibs on the SecDef position on his cabinet!

Brother, can you spare a dime?

Rattle, rattle, rattle- that would be ths sound of me waving my dingy, bent, tin cup at you from a street corner, as I figure out where my next meal is coming from...

That's right, as you might have guessed from Thursday night's post, I'm unemployed.


Made redundant.

Laid off.

Not welcome in my building or cubicle...

Its a long story but I finally tipped off th high-wire act that is being a contractor working for the government. COntractors work at the whim of their .gov manangement and it doesn't take much, (or anything) to get them to release you. And that's what happened to me. The management decided they just didn't like my work style and even though I got the results they wanted, I didn't act the way they thought I should. And so Thursday afternoon, my company set me loose.

The good news is I did get "laid off" so I received a better than expected severance package and should I be unemployed still at the end of that package, I can apply for unemployment benefits.

In the mean time, I have have a new job starting tomorrow, that is, hunting for a new job. I'll be updating my resume and contacting a number of folks I already know and stirring the pot to see what I can dig out of their listings as well as several others.

I hate it that I won't see the Taxi Light Relocation program that I have worked on get finished but I guess somebody will pick it up behind me and finish it off.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

This just might make you laugh-

it certainly comes with a drink/monitor interfernce warning....

Check this out.

Too drunk to give you details-

but today has Not been a good day. Details, (or a rough estimation of the real story), later. Tomorrow maybe, when I've got more time...

Lots more time...

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

No shop roof work tonight-

no lawn mowing or scooter re-assembling in the shop tonight either. I didn't even go out to the shop for a smoke and to listen to the Raptor's game. I'm just too tired tonight.

I got home from work and sat down, only to have to go out immediately to rescue the BSU, clear down in Layton at her eye Doc's office. She had taken herself to an appointment, unaware that she would be having her eyes dilated, so she was in no condition to drive home. And I went and rescued her like any caring hubby would.

I left the scoot there, we both went to dinner at Jason's Deli and then I took her home. Kenny picked me up and delivered me back down to the scooter so I could get it home. That's when I discovered that the license plate had fallen off Sleek Black Beauty!

Hooverdamm! The aluminum bracket that holds the LED brakelight and the license plate frame broke at the top of the license plate holder. Its gone.

I guess tomorrow I get to visit my friendly DMV office...

Good news & bad news from the boy

So, son Noah’s been back in Colorado for a week and a half and yesterday evening he called to say he had found a job. That’s the good news. He’s decided that he wants to stay close to the Rocky Mountains and so had been pursuing work for one of the several ski resorts, hopefully in the maintenance barns servicing and repairing all the trucks, cats and snowmobiles that a ski resort requires. Yesterday he went in to fill out an application at one of the resorts and while searching for a stapler to keep his application package together, ran into the General Manager who promptly offered him a summer job cutting brush on the slopes and promised to consider his application for more complex employment.


The bad news is, later in the afternoon he had his first spill on his motorcycle and banged up his knee... He had apparently ridden to Fremont Springs- the nearest town with any shopping that doesn’t require a designer label, taken his eyes off the van in front of him for a second and looked up to discover the van coming to an immediate stop. He didn’t get the bike stopped fast enough and ended up on his side partially under the van! There’s no serious damage done, the van’s unharmed and no tickets were issued but he did ding up his shiny motorcycle a bit and he twisted his knee pretty painfully. You know, the knee that he needs for hiking up and down ski slopes beginning today, cutting brush…


I advised that he get himself a knee brace at the nearest pharmacy and that he get off of it as soon as he could get back to where he is staying. He was still dang determined to show up for work this morning, just as he had promised and I hope his injuries won’t prevent that. He’ll be sore for a bit but I suspect he will be feeling better soon and he’ll be a better motorcycle rider as a result of all this. His motorcycle will be easily repaired once he starts making some money with his new job.


Needless to say- his mom was not happy to hear about his motorcycle accident!

Sunday, August 17, 2008


So easy a caveman could do it.

Well, I beg to differ but I have to tell you that this really made me laugh! Thanks Cowboy Blob!

"I'm hot because I have a beaver."

Hey, I didn't say it!

I think there's a mom that's overestimating the number of years before she should be expecting her daughter to say something like this...

Well, the shingles are all off!

I still have a few to throw into the trash cans but they are all loose and waiting to be tossed off the shed roof. I've also cut away the overhanging tree branches that would have been in the way of the new roof.

I missed the sales guy for the rafters on Friday so I still need to hook up with him 1 more time before ordering the trusses. Then it will be a week or 10 days before they arrive and I'll use that time to get the lights and hoist and lumber rack off the roof on the inside.

Skylights are expensive! I want to put two of them into the new roof for some additional light and so this afternoon the BSU and I checked them out at The Home Depot. Two of them looks like it will drive my total costs up by over $400. Grr! I've also got to figure out what type of insulation I'll be installing and figuring in that cost.

And shingles! Shingles are expensive now too! The good ones are $24 per bundle and the spousal unit is encouraging me to go ahead and buy the good ones, so now I have to figure out how many bundles I will need.

It looks like this project might take a little longer than I intended as I pay for ll these improvements over a couple paydays. But I'm going to have a much nicer shop when its all done!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

So what's happening with me?

Well, it's summertime here and I’m spending as many hours outside as I possibly can. Which means when I am sitting down that I’m too tired to have coherent thoughts, never mind coherent things to write. And I haven’t picked up my new Apple iPhone yet so there’s no real blogging from the job either.


The boy has come and visited and returned to Colorado to seek further fame & fortune. He interviewed for a job in Craig, Colorado yesterday in a small dealership but hasn’t accepted the offer just yet as Craig is apparently a pretty small outpost town that is presently bursting at the seams with oil & gas roughnecks occupying every available living space. But he seemed to have a pretty good visit to Utah and was able to see most of his friends, just like he intended.


Raptors baseball has entered its final weeks of the season and the BSU & I made it to two games in the past week. The Raptors are currently leading their division for the 2nd half of the season, even winning 8 games in a row. Sadly that winning streak ended Monday night and last night’s game turned into a blowout for the Helena Brewers. They beat the Raptors 9-4 last night. I’m afraid that our team might have burned up all their energy winning those 8 in a row and left them a bit empty afterwards. We’ll see as the season winds down.


I’ve found a fishing spot at Willard Bay Reservoir that I like, just next to the south boat launch. It's easy to get to, has incoming water and a moderately deep channel and a decent place to sit. I’ve been there twice and am batting .500 for catching fish [boy, that’s a mixed metaphor] so I’ll keep going out there as time allows. I tried to take the BSU there last night but she elected to see the Raptors play over trying to coax fish onto a hook. Tonight I’m headed out to the same reservoir but this time with a buddy in his boat so we can try a bit of trolling for Wipers.


The re-roof job on my workshop is progressing nicely. I have an estimate for the new trusses for my raised roof and I hope to be ordering them in the next day or two. I’ve removed all the old felt that I put on top of the shingles a couple years back and about ¼ of the shingles. I’ll finish that task while waiting on the trusses to arrive and try to save as much of the plywood as I can for reuse on the new roof. I’m pretty certain that I’ll be installing a couple new skylights to let in some sun as part of the improvements and insulation to the inside of the roof to help keep the temperatures temperate. I’ll be adding rain gutters to the back side of the roof to move the water away and keep it from intruding over the floor when the rains come. I’m pretty excited about the entire project and am looking forward to a roomier, warmer-in-the-winter shop. Did I mention that I intend to install a permanent propane fired heater in my new headroom? That’s the plan!


So I’m plenty busy. It's all good though and my yard is even looking better than it has most of the year. I guess if I spend enough time moving the sprinklers around and operating them that the grass will stay green. Imagine that!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Build your own Stonehenge

Wally Wallington is building one in his backyard and he shows how to do it. This is some pretty amazing thinking and problem solving at a big level.

I'm pretty certain my Grandpa Harry would have liked this guy.

Thanks to Kenny who sent me the link via email.

A Utah icon succumbs to gravity

Surprisingly, I didn't hear about this at all from the local news here behind the Zion Curtain but from my dad this morning- Iconic stone arch collapses in southern Utah park.

I've been to Arches National Park and it is an amazing place to visit. The scenery is breath-taking and almost other worldly. So its a little bit sad to hear that one of the landmarks that makes Utah unique has succumbed to the natural forces that created it in the first place.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

This is going to cost me many lost hours!

Tonight I installed Google SketchUp 3D drawing software on my computer. It looks like it might be great fun and its much more challenging than the tutorial might lead you to believe.

I decided to try it out so I can try to build some models of my workshop in preparation for the new roof. The sales guy from Stock Builders Supply came by this afternoon to do the measuring and he will be sending quotes on 2 different roof shapes. It's either going to be the dual truss half scissors design or the clear story design that will allow me to install some additional windows or ventilation.

So- I'm pretty excited. I hope that I'll be paying a deposit for some trusses in just a couple days.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

The boy should be home shortly.

Noah son is taking a week's vacation from the job in Aspen and is headed home on his motorcycle. I spoke to him about 2 this afternoon and he was on his way. So he should be pulling into the carport pretty shortly.

I think he's got plans to see a bunch a his friends- he wants to show off that motorcycle after all, but I suppose he will stick close enough to home for some home cooked meals.

Tomorrow's dinner is fresh fish, catfish and wiper, fried up and served with hush puppies. I caught 2 channel cats and 1 wiper today and we had 1 more from my last fishing trip so there should be enough to go around.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Anybody else having problems with Internet Explorer tonight?

My humble blog is causing IE to abort operations tonight for a reason unknown to me. Mozilla is working but I need to know if you are having problems reading this through IE. email me at nr234mccordATcom5657castDOTnet. [Take out the numbers, obviously, and correct the usual punction.]

UPDATE: it was Sitemeter that was causing the problem and apparently its fixed now.

To the crotch rocket rider on Wardleigh Rd today at lunch time-

Dude, tucking behind the windscreen with your chin on the gas tank while riding on a road with a 40 mph speed limit makes you look like a dork!

And, BTW, if you are really looking for maximum aerodynamics on your race bike, you should probably dump that huge pack strapped to your back that's sticking up into the wind stream.

I'm pretty certain all that leaning forward against the gas tank has cut off the blood flow to your brains. Dumbass!

Nothing to do now but wait-

Delivery time is somewhere between 10 and 20 days- probably closer to the 20 day point before I get my new iPhone! Yeah!

Yes, I ordered my new iPhone 3G yesterday.

I'm too excited to sleep!