...this has been a shit weekend despite the lovely weather. Friday night, that extreme panic attack, the one where I was positive I was dying, like, immediately. I wasn't, but it felt like that. So, Xanax.
Spent Saturday in a depressive haze. Total ennui: didn't want to do anything, couldn't see the point of existence. Dinner made me feel a little better, but not very much. All day was pretty much spent either trying to ignore the world, or trying to cudgel myself into some kind of action, and failing.
(and I can't help the Star Wars reference:
"Uncle Owen--this R2 unit has a bad motivator! Look!" *zap crackle*
"What kind of junk are you trying to push on us?"
Anyway, around sunset I finally found an iota of energy and went out to the garage to take the drive belt out of the pusher, reasoning that I'd have that much of a head start on today's festivities if I did.
This mower is not built with easy servicing in mind, let me tell you. To get the belt off I needed to remove:
Then I was able to remove the belt from the pulleys. In the process of all this, though, I discovered that the cable which actuates the drive mechanism was broken.
1) belt cover (2 bolts)
2) grass catcher baffle (5 bolts)
3) differential belt guard (more in a second)
4) crankshaft belt buard (two motor mount bolts)
The belt is held on the pulleys, at both ends, with closely-spaced curved pieces of metal. Because the tension of the differential pulley is what determines the speed at which the mower moves, the belt could come off at idle, so the guards keep it on. On the crankshaft pulley, this guard is held in place by two of the motor mount bolts--half of the bolts that secure the engine to the mower deck--and they didn't even make one of the mounting holes slotted. No, you need to take two mount bolts out completely to get this guard off. *sigh*
On the diff end?
Even with a 100 watt LED bulb held mere inches from the differential, I could not see what kind of bolts were used to secure the belt guard at that end, because they were helpfully painted dead black. The bolts used to hold the differential housing together are Torx (zinc-plated), so I tried Torx; no go. Philips--no go.
Someone must've rounded them out. My closest inspection told me "Torx, rounded out". Admittedly I did not get right on them and look. The mower was laying on the garage floor and I was not going to go prone to do that. "Torx" sounded right, since the other bolts on the differential assembly were Torx.
Got the Dremel and cut slots into the top two, used a flat screwdriver to back one out--
I've never encountered square drive bolts on a lawn mower before (or anywhere, in fact) so I didn't even think--
Anyway with the right bit in hand I got the second and third one out easy-peasy. Got the belt off after that. Took the cable off, too, and put all the miscellaneous bits into ziploc bags so nothing would get lost.
Early this afternoon I got up and started trying to find the cable. Turns out there are no places likely to have the part which are also open on a Sunday.
So, though I don't like to, I'll cut the south side of the house with the tractor.
* * *
You see, this is what people don't seem to understand, though. I don't even think my wife quite gets it: there are simply some days when I can't.
I have gotten very good at faking it. I don't miss work any longer because of things like this. Over the years I've developed methods for coping with the ups and downs of my cantankerous brain chemistry, some which are better than others. The biggest breakthrough was getting medicated, because that really made a huge difference in everything.
Sometimes, when I really consider it, I wonder if it's not some form of bipolar disorder--but if so, it's very mild. Maybe it's the result of the six years of emotional abuse that is commonly referred to as "middle and high school", and it's untreated PTSD. More likely it's just straight anxiety at various intensities.
(Owing to a line I liked in a TV movie originally called Combat High, I refer to them as "'not safe for fabrics' days". After one of the main characters says, of himself, "This is the new and improved Max Mendelsson, and this one's safe for fabrics!")
So if it's a case of going to work and doing my job, I can fake it. It's difficult and stressful and exhausting, but I can. But if it's a weekend and there's no paycheck involved and I'm not going to get dinged on attendance then why should I suffer?
Anyway, having had a shit day yesterday, I still need to cut the grass and I can't get the part for the pusher, so I'll have to do it all with the tractor and hope I can get the part I need tomorrow.
* * *
But let's get on with the commentary.
City of AUstin, TX, is advertising for people to become blockwarts.
What is a Zero Waste Block Leader?Eventually, of course--if the left gets its way--"Zero Waste Block Leaders" will be allowed to shoot you if you don't recycle right. "Comrade, I am told there was glass in your compostable waste." *gunshot*
The Block Leader's mission is to unite the community to promote environmental issues and lead the effort in creating a cleaner, greener Austin. Block Leaders are a resource in their communities, helping guide their neighbors and friends in how to reduce, reuse, recycle and compost materials so they stay out of our landfill. Block Leaders serve an important role in helping Austin become a Zero Waste leader.
You think I'm joking. I'm not.
* * *
No police, no deliveries, in the order I found them:
"A popular trucking app called CDLLife polled its users Thursday and found an overwhelming number of drivers will not 'pickup/deliver to cities with defunded/disbanded police departments.'" Let's face it: by definition, a truck carrying merchandise is carrying a valuable commodity. If there are no police there to prevent it, why wouldn't people rob the driver at gunpoint? And who's to say those brigands don't beat the shit out of the driver, maybe even to death, regardless of his level of compliance?
"Cities that tolerate packs of degenerate genetic defectives hijacking their local politics should get to experience the full consequence of their mind-boggling stupidity." ...and don't fucking bitch about "food deserts", you assholes.
"Truck driving is historically ranked as one of the most dangerous jobs in the country." More dangerous, by the way, than being a police officer, did you know that?
If I were a truck driver, I certainly would not willingly go into areas which were, by definition, lawless.
* * *
Onward to CHAZ, the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, exemplar of anarchy and the egalitarianist left!
White residents are pressured to give $10 each to black people. That post is a cornucopia of leftism in action.
"I've never before seen an image encapsulate a cause with this much accuracy. Truly amazing." Raising their flag in an overflowing garbage can--it really is iconic. They're trying to evoke the image of the American flag going up over Iwo Jima, though I am not sure why considering that these leftist dolts ought not to think of that as an admirable scene, to be emulated. Then again, intellectual coherency is not a feature of leftism.
* * *
So in the 96 days between two officer-involved shootings in Chicago, there were:
Shot and Killed: 170And lest you forget, something like 90% of the violent crime in Chicago is committed by some 5% of the population. Guess what the racial mix is.
Shot and Wounded: 802
Total Shot: 972
Total Homicides: 185
Police superintendant allegedly runs away.
Brave Sir Robin ran away.After all he signed up to tell other cops what to do, not to get his hands dirty actually, you know, confronting criminals.
Bravely ran away away.
When danger reared it's ugly head,
He bravely turned his tail and fled.
Yes, brave Sir Robin turned about
And gallantly he chickened out.
Swiftly taking to his feet,
He beat a very brave retreat.
Bravest of the brave, Sir Robin!
Chicago leadership had no plan for handling the riots.
Chicago had a near-total leadership vacuum and the mayor utterly bungled the city's response to the riots.
* * *
Of course the "peaceful" protests only turn "violent" when reporters are threatened.
I guess we should get used to this kind of thing.
Even pointing out that blaming whites for the ills of the black community is itself rasicm is forbidden.
In order to avoid being perceived as racist we are to infantilize blacks and assume they cannot cope at all without special treatment.
* * *
"Gay and in space". This is the theme for an upcoming Empire Stikes Back anthology.
No, it's meant to be mainstream.
* * *
Well, that grass is not going to cut itself. I need to eat something and start cutting.