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:
   semi-mature mantids
Wednesday, August 2 2023
As a procrastination against other tasks, this afternoon I did something that I'm also fond procrastinating: I mowed the lawn, something I like to do these days while listening to the audio track of YouTube clip about someone scammed by a Nigerian romance scammer. As I mowed, I noticed a surprising number of immature praying mantises, each about one and a half or two inches long and very pale green in color. (Usually I never see praying mantises at all until late in the summer, when they're much larger and closer to brown in color.) The mosquitoes attacked me relentlessly as I worked, something I was less of aware of due to my headphones blocking the sound of their tiny wings. But after I was done, I was covered with bumps from their bites.
Then I decided to buckle down and do one of the things I've been procrastinating. For years Gretchen has been on me to clean out the garage, and periodically I make a half-hearted stab at it. Now that I'm unemployed, she's cranked up the pressure. But she's also inserted herself into the job as a project manager by dividing it into tasks that I can actually visualize myself completing. The first of these tasks she wanted me to complete was cleaning off the top of the freezer, which, over the past dozen years, has accumulated an array of various liquids in bottles and cans: bleach, car windshield washer fluid, steering & transmission fluid, lubricating oils of various types, wood conditioners, strong acids, furnace cement, and, most especially, spray paint (all in the palette of forest camouflage). So at around 3:00pm this afternoon I started the task of cleaning off the top of the freezer. Any bottle that contained a trivial amount of liquid or had gone bad was put in the trash pile, partial bottles of the same (or similar) fluids were combined, and I hosed off what remained out in the driveway, blasting away decades of grime, spider webs, and spilled fluids. Once clear, the top of the freezer then had to be cleaned, something that required a wide putty knife, as there was a substantial residue of spilled fluids that had them combined and hardened in various ways (some of them possibly new to material science). After lots of scrubbing, I had the top almost pristine, with just a few places where the white enamel had flaked away and the underlying steel had corroded slightly.

Gretchen would be swimming at Paula's mountain-top swimming pool this evening after working her Wednesday shift at the bookstore, so I took my fifth bath in six days knowing I could do so without her around watching teevee in the next room. Gretchen, had hinted in a message that she wanted me to boil pasta, but because she'd only said "I made pesto," I'd assumed she'd made a whole dish containing pesto as a component. So when Gretchen finally got home, I made a big pot of spagettig using as little water as possible. Gretchen always insists one needs to use lots of water when making pasta, but I've found that this just isn't true. And besides, using lots of water is wasteful, something Gretchen is suddenly super conscious of (perhaps due to her ongoing global temperature catastrophe — don't call it "global warming" — freak-out).

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