Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   power outage morning
Wednesday, October 29 2008
The power outage from last night continued until mid afternoon today, throwing a monkeywrench into all the electricity-requiring activities that constitute the stepping stones of my day. Without 120 volts, I couldn't grind my preferred type of coffee, so I relied instead on a bag of inferior pre-ground stuff. For hot water, I could start the gas stove, though I had to do so with a BicTM lighter instead of the tick-tick-tick mechanism. Meanwhile Gretchen needed a shower. There was almost enough remaining pressure in the plumbing system to get a shower in the basement, though it had been days since we'd had sun and the "hot" water was less than 90 degrees.
Without internet, I caught up on the news by listening to the local public radio station using a battery-powered radio down at the greenhouse site. The weather was still miserable, with cold winds and occasional sleet from grim clouds racing across an occasionally blue sky. I only installed two concrete blocks, spending most of my time leveling out the top of the second tier of blocks on the north wall using concrete.
Up until recently I've had to fetch water in order to mix concrete and mortar, but recent rains have filled buckets right there at the greenhouse site. And the temporary artesian springs in the nascent greenhouse's floor are proving more of a help than a hindrance, providing a convenient source of flowing clean water for wetting things down or cleaning things off. It was interesting to note that this burbling water is significantly warmer than the collected rainwater in the buckets. There must be considerable heat still in surface rocks stored up from the summer, heat that water in temporary springs can pick up and carry away. I'm sure this same water is surprisingly cold in the spring time.

One thing that the power outage didn't prevent me from doing was making an appointment at the vet for Wilma, our most cantankerous cat. She has a chronic ear infection that we've been remiss in treating. The medication necessary to treat this infection is available only through prescription, and to get that we needed to take her to a vet. This was how an $18 product came to cost us $100.

Later I went to Home Depot and took their last five 8 X 8 X 16 inch blocks. I filled out the rest of my available payload with ten 8 X 8 X 8 blocks and 320 pounds of concrete and mortar.

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