October 14th, 2019

#6883: For the love of--

Got to work a couple minutes late, and then had 50,000 things to juggle. Guy came to swap out routers in the server room--replacing an obsolete one--and once he left I got a call from Mrs. Fungus saying that her car wouldn't move.

Left work and came home, stopping on the way to buy transmission fluid (because a good samaritan stopped and looked at the transmission fluid dipstick and said there was nothing there). Got home, got a funnel, went to where the car was--it was not far--and checked the fluid level myself. Sure enough, the barest bit of fluid on the tip of the dipstick...and a fair puddle of the stuff laying atop the splash shield at the bottom of the engine compartment.

Her car blew a fucking transmission hose.

...during our initial phone call she had demanded to know why I hadn't checked the transmission fluid when I changed her oil a couple weeks ago, and I didn't have an answer for her then. But now that I knew what had happened, I knew it wasn't something we could put off fixing. But I don't have any PTO yet--this is only my third fricking week!--and I can't take a day off to do anything anyway, unless it's a dire emergency, because I'm in my first sixty days.

We took it to the corner mechanic, the place that's been there since time immemorial. It's the place that fixed the Jeep's rear shock back in 2012. They were able to fix it, all right--to the tune of $195--but it's fixed and I don't have to fuck with it.

The Jeep's alternator, that's something I knew I could fix pretty easily. But transmission cooling lines on a Toyota--I've never replaced them, have no idea what kind of pressure they might be under, had absolutely no time to figure it out--so I erred on the side of making it someone else's problem and took it to the pros. The repair was a bit costlier than the estimates I saw on-line from the comfort of my office, after I'd made the decision, but it cost considerably less than I'd feared when I made the decision. And all told it was cheaper than having the thing crap out again up north, an hour's drive from the bunker, so it was good to get it fixed today. And of course I have been socking back money specifically for emergencies like this one.

We're coming down to a decision point on Mrs. Fungus' car, though. I need to bleed the brakes and get the rear brakes adjusted correctly. Once that's done, the front struts need to be replaced and a 4-wheel alignment done. The spark plugs still have not been replaced in the car, because I tried to loosen one, found it "gronchy", and did not want to risk stripping the threads out of the aluminum cylinder head.

But it's close to 200k on the clock. Might be time to trade it in....

* * *

Do you mean to tell me that the solar panel systems being sold to people don't store electricity at all? What the point?

Apparently the solar power systems that are being touted all over the country aren't connected to batteries. You pay--I don't know, $20,000?--a shitton of money to have your house's roof festooned with solar panels, and you get some kind of break on the cost of electricity because when the sun is shining you make power and sell it to the power company.

...but if the power company cuts the power to prevent forest fires, well, "most panels are designed to supply power to the grid--not directly to houses," which means even if your roof is one big solar panel and the sun is out, you're sitting there without electricity.

That has got to be the stupidest thing I've heard in a long time.

Of course the battery system isn't covered by the subsidy. Adding that battery system to your solar roof makes you independent of the power company, most days, and people who go all-in on home solar power rapidly figure out how to keep their need for external power to a minimum. It's expensive, though, without the subsidy.

And you know...I kind of figured that would be the case. I kind of figured that the solar power systems being touted by all and sundry were scams, one way or another, and it turns out I was right. It's not about making people independent of the power companies; it's about making them into suppliers of electricity so the power company doesn't have to build and maintain its own solar plants. And of course the power companies set what they're going to pay for power, naturally.

Scam. I knew it.

* * *

Francis Porretto tells you where you can stuff your cries of "racism".

It's either this, or closing the store in which case you'll start screaming about "food deserts".

* * *

In the second image down I sincerely hope that is a temporary tattoo and not a real one.

* * *

Stupid, stupid business decisions are why reform is sorely needed.

* * *

But of course Cuomo isn't going to the one freezing his ass off when the gas pressure goes too low and furnaces start to shut down. Neither are any of the politicians in the state capital.

But you know what? Kim du Toit is right:
If the people of New York are going to continue to vote assholes like Cuomo into power year after year, decade after decade, I fail to see why I should have any sympathy when said assholes' idiotic policies turn round and start biting the very people who voted them into power.
They voted for this shit, so let them enjoy it.

* * *

So, after work, stopped and picked up my wife's car, and paid the bill, and then got her so she could drive me back to get the Jeep.

After that, cut the grass.

Started this post.

Washed the dishes while cooking dinner.

...now I'm going to eat dinner and play WoW.