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:
Tuesday, June 8 2021
I don't know what washing machines used to cost, but an inexpensive new one these days is one the order of $500, so Gretchen looked far and wide for a used one to replace the broken one at the Wall Street rental. On Craigslist, she managed to find a $75 one about an hour away, which seemed like a long drive for the Subaru with its ongoing fluid leak problem. I started up the Subaru to see how bad it was and decided it had gotten worse. So then I wondered if a washing machine would fit in the back of the Chevy Bolt. Its normal payload area is pretty small, but with the backseats folded forward, the space was about four feet deep. Unfortunately, though, the seats themselves cut down on the available head room by possibly enough to make transportation of a washing machine impossible. But with those seats gone, there would probably be more than enough. So I removed a number of large bolts and, with a some unpleasant wrenching and tugging (drenching me in sweat), I managed to completely remove the back seats, turning the Bolt into a snazzy little delivery van. Since the new cabin in the Adirondacks will probably require a lot of hauling, we'll be leaving it this way for the time being. Gretchen then ran a bunch of errands in the delivery-vanified Bolt and later reported that it stank the whole time of my particular body odor.
It took awhile for the seller of the washing machine to get back to us with their address, but soon thereafter I took a shower to de-stankify and then headed out in the delivery-vanified Bolt. I had a little range anxiety because of the distance of my destination, so I kept the windows rolled up and didn't run the air conditioner, all of which was possible because the sky was full of thunderstorms and I was wearing a wet freshly-washed tee shirt. As I drove, I listened to a succession of radio stations as their signals appeared and faded to oblivion.
The seller was located in Patterson, NY, which is in Putnam County near Connecticut. As I drove into Patterson, I was struck by the series of crude stone underpasses I drove through, some of which forced two-lane roads through a one-lane aperture seemingly without warning. My destination was a big ugly McMansion on a hill that didn't seem to be marked with any street number at all, forcing me to knock on the door and ask if it was indeed #79 (it was). The woman answering the door had a bit of a foreign accent. She told me the washing machine was in the garage, so I went around there. When I next saw the woman, she'd put on a coroanvirus mask (I'd been wearing my gaiter). The washing machine looked great, so I immediately wrestled it into the back of the Bolt while the woman went to find me my $5 in change. The washing machine easily fit in the car, but the change was harder to come by. The woman appeared with her daughter, and the daughter asked if I had Venmo on my phone. I said I didn't, and for some reason she seemed surprised even though I probably look something like her presumably tech-incompetent father. Between the two of them, they managed to scrounge up $2, but that was it. Then the woman asked if I liked plants. Of course I like plants! So she gave me some cutting from a plant of hers that keeps growing and growing. I told her that was perfect and that I was happy with the transaction. I then drove back homeward.
As I passed New Paltz, I hit send on an direct message I'd slowly typed for Powerful while driving in a long bubble of empty Thruway. It was to tell him to meet me at the Wall Street house to help wrestle the new washing machine into place. He was there when I arrived, and, after alerting the two tenants, we began to wrestle the damn thing into the basement. This was the fourth object of its size I'd moved into that basement, and it doesn't seem to get any easier with practice. The stairway is a little too narrow with its hand rail, and that rail is nailed so it's not something I ever remove. We ultimately have to slide the object down atop the rail. And then removing the old object is similarly brutal. But we did the whole thing, and I ended up with the old broken washing machine in the back of the Bolt. Back at the house, Gretchen came out to help me unload it, but that's really just a one-man chore. Meanwhile, Gretchen had assembled an Asian-style meal complete with Thai-style vegan fish cakes (which she didn't want but I did).
Not surprisingly, Gretchen thought the tropical plant the Patterson woman had given me in lieu of $3 of change was "ugly." But I thought it would make a good story some day if I could keep it alive.

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