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:
   concrete girder permanence
Wednesday, November 6 2013
An hour or so before a meeting with the guy whom I am building it for, I made the mistake of trying to migrate from the locally-working version of my Lightroom plugin to the one that communicates across the internet. I quickly ran into the sorts of problems one encounters when an FTP user uploads files that then must be moved by whatever user Apache (the web process) happens to be impersonating. Suffice it to say, all my fine work wasn't really demonstrable once the client came over, and this seemed to annoy him, though not any more than I have annoyed him in the past. For the most part we work well together, though occasionally he gets stressed out and I feel an unpleasantness between us. That was definitely the case today, and it put me in a bad mood for the rest of the day.
As soon as that meeting was over with, I loaded up the dogs and drove to Uptown to take care of some business. I needed to restock my laboratory liquor cabinet and get some juice from the Hannaford, though while at the Hannaford I also bought a lot of beans and other canned goods. The main reason to go to uptown, though, was to buy forty pounds of dry concrete mix from Herzog's. While I was in the lumber yard getting my concrete, Ramona jumped out of the back and ran around for a bit, freaking out a guy carrying some very long wooden things on a forklift.
Back at the house, I use a masonry bit to sink some deep holes into the rock and concrete at either end of the four by six girder that holds up the west end of the deck that serves as the floor for the east half of the greenhouse first floor. I then mixed up some Portland cement and used it to fill those holes. Finally, I sank long spiral-shafted galvanized nails into those holes, leaving an inch or more exposed on the head end of each nail. Later mixed up that 40 pounds of concrete (it was a little crusty around the edges, which is one of the downsides of having some employee pick out your sack of concrete for you), and glurped it around either end of the girder and the exposed nails. The idea is that as soon as the concrete hardens, the girder will be a permanent solid footing for the deck and I can happily continue my excavation beneath it without worrying about it any further.

Meanwhile Gretchen had been working a shift over across the river with her unpleasant elderly poet client. She's usually beat after one of those shifts, so occasionally on such nights I cook us both dinner. Tonight I made one of my bean-and-rice combos. Fortuitously Gretchen had gone shopping at Adam's Fairacre Farms and bought not only lots of "green material" (lettuce, spinach, and other plants that can go in a burrito or sandwich), but also a bag of huge (12 inch diameter) whole wheat tortillas. Adam's is the only place that sells such big tortillas, though making my kind of burrito demands tortillas of that size.
By around 10:30 pm, I felt exhausted. I'd stayed up late the night before, and I figured I needed to pay down my sleep deficit. So I went to bed early.

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