January 3rd, 2018

#6055: Yeah, it's been done already.

Francis Porretto decides to have some fun with a gamer-sized dice collection from Amazon. 20 sets of polyhedron dice for the low price of $30 (which really is screaming cheap compared to what they used to cost) and they even come in a nice bag. Porretto's post suggests, "Come up with a game which would use all the dice!"

TSR did that already and it was ridiculous enough that I don't think anyone needs to come up with something worse.

* * *

Record cold this winter. I don't doubt it. -13° isn't the coldest it's ever been here, but it's damned cold, and it's been bitter cold since Christmas. Today it's finally warmed up a bit--and it's snowing, on and off. "A bit", I say--try thirty degrees warmer. It's 19°.

Oh, but global warming, climate denier, etc etc. STFU.

* * *

Just leave my system unpatched for this vulnerability, please. A 30% performance hit to fix a problem with Intel processors? 30% is unacceptable.

Well, maybe I could buy a new processor for the thing and get around it that way. But it's something I don't want to do, wasn't expecting I'd have to do. Kind of pisses me off....

* * *

Over the past few days I've been experiencing sinus congestion--worse than usual--and pain. I ended up grabbing something pretty much at random from the medicine cabinet; whenever Mrs. Fungus gets a head cold she goes out and buys another box of Mucinex, so we have half a dozen boxes of the stuff, and I just looked for the the word "Mucinex" and grabbed pills from one of them.

And to my surprise, this stuff actually works. I mean, I can feel it work, to the point that suddenly things go gronk and start draining. Usually, over-the-counter sinus stuff just lessens the discomfort, and maybe the congestion eventually goes away and maybe it doesn't. This stuff, however--

For the record, the box says "Mucinex fast max liquigels for congestion and headache", and I'll be buying more of it when we go out to run errands today. Because it actually works. And it doesn't seem to contain generic Sudafed, pseudoephedrine hydrochloride, AKA "the a-number-one meth precursor that the state tracks". (I bet we still have to get the background check and anal exam to buy this stuff, though.)

I want to avoid Sudafed anyway; it raises your blood pressure, and I'm of an age where that is a concern. It also doesn't really seem to help me the way it used to, anyway.

Side note: I remember getting it in 100-pill bottles, and I'd take it regularly. That's when I was in my early 20s; buying that much sudafed at once these days would result in an early-morning "visit" from your friendly neighborhood anti-drug jackbooted thug, because our betters in government have decided that anyone who buys 3g of sudafed is planning to make methamphetamine.

(I have to wonder how much meth you can make with 3g of sudafed, but I'm worried that looking for it in the Goolag will get me noticed, so I won't bother.)

I once, accidentally, took a double dose of the stuff. It was a very weird experience. I guess that's what being high is like, but I didn't like it, and can't recommend it.

* * *

In the "wow!" department--I forgot to submit my time card over the weekend, having intended to do it on Saturday (which is the last day of the week on which I work). Couldn't do it from home because I didn't have my login or password for the appropriate web site, so I submitted it yesterday, expecting that this week's paycheck would be delayed a day or two.

It wasn't.

Time to pay some bills! *whimper*

#6056: Bits and pieces

Finally got the Jeep hosed off today, while we were out running errands. I got the water weenie, but didn't do anything with it; I'll do that after work tomorrow.

In a prior entry I mentioned not having to scrape the Jeep's windows--it seems that regardless of conditions I haven't had to scrape frost from the windows for a long time. Not sure why. Then, Tuesday morning...yeah.

* * *

Would have spent Christmas money on a new cordless drill today, but Friday is when the 20% off coupon starts working, so I'll get it then.

* * *

So, three days on again, and regular work schedule thereafter; hoping that on Sunday--unlike today--I can actually sleep in more than a couple of hours.

* * *

The train set Mrs. Fungus gave me for Christmas is a little Bachmann set. A simple circle of track, locomotivee and three cars, transformer. I set it up on the kitchen counter, around the ceramic Christmas tree. It seems to work rather well.

The Bachmann track is, of course, different from the Life-Like track I have. When I build my layout, I'll probably use the Life-Like track, and get flex track as well (I bought, in 2007, adapter sections for just that) and use the flex track for the long runs.

I'm not about to build a huge, basement-consuming layout, but something that would fit in a 3x6' space wouldn't be beyond the pale, and I could even make it so it could be stowed away somewhere. There's a lot of cleaning and reorganizing between where I am now and actually setting up that layout, but there's no reason I couldn't build a basic layout on foam board first, then--later--build a bigger one. Take a little inspiration from that "build a layout in a day" video I watched and make something relatively simple just so I can run trains a bit, you know.

Dream layout is L-shaped, about two feet deep, with each leg perhaps five or six feet long, and tracks at two elevations--big enough to make continuous operation more interesting than a train going around in little circles, small enough that I won't spend ten years and $10,000 on building it.

...all of which is taking a back seat to other stuff right now. But we'll get there.

* * *

Woke up this morning to snow--not a lot, just enough to cover last week's snow with new powder.

* * *

Interesting thing: with the bitter cold we had, the Jeep's front end was solid as a mountain. No shimmy; a bit of vibration above 50 MPH but definitely no wobbling or anything. Do you know what that means?

It means control arm bushings, that's what, because the bitter cold made everything shrink and harden. And as soon as the weather ceased to be cryogenic, the wobble came right back.

The other thing: it occurs to me that I never did pull the front drive shaft and check its u-joints, and that's something I really ought to do. When I put the Jeep in 4WD, there's a grinding noise over about 30 MPH only when the driveshaft is loaded (such as on acceleration, or when engine braking). The timbre of the noise changes when going over bumps. $5 says there's a bad u-joint in that front drive shaft.

So, once it's warm outside:

1) Control arm bushings, tie rods as needed, and a front end alignment
2) Front drive shaft inspect/repair
4) Exhaust system
5) Start doing something about the rust

...something involving cutting out bad metal and welding in good metal, I mean. Like this. And I'd bet that more than a cursory search would yield more than one source for rust repair panels.

Like these perhaps. Holy crap, they even have the fan shroud there!

* * *

Well, tomorrow's going to be a day, so I suppose I'd better get to bed.