November 24th, 2020

#7392: Well, that sucked

Did not sleep all that well last night--coughing etc--and this morning I woke up from a pretty depressing dream.

Basically, zombie story. Not sure if it took place on Earth or a planet around a distant star--it varied--but it started with the ladybugs.

Ladybugs were crawling around, only some of them had only two legs, and then there was just a line of ladybug legs, still wiggling. There were these kind of pastel-rainbow bugs that were going after the ladybugs, and what would happen is that the rainbow bug would latch onto a ladybug, something would happen, and they'd both just kind of...pop, like bubbles.

That kind of bothered me but the plot moved on to other things, only to come back to the thing later when the farm was beset with zombies. People we'd known, only now they were covered with sores from the rainbow bug things and interested only in murder and feeding. There was a long period of conflict and running and avoiding, and the survivors finally managed to escape, all piled atop a tractor. It was going to be fine! We were going to prevail!

Except we weren't, and we all knew it, because the rainbow bugs were already well on their way towards wrecking the ecosystem, and we might have as much as a couple years before we all died of starvation or lack of oxygen or-or-or.

And I woke up.

When I woke up, it was with a splitting headache, an emotional funk left over from the dream, and it was perhaps half an hour before my normal time to get up. I decided there was no point to trying to go back to sleep, so I sat in my rocking chair in my underwear, drank a Mountain Dew, and read Hayate no Gotoku. Which helped, at least a little.

Had to chisel ice off the windows of both cars, ended up getting to work 15 minutes late.

Well, Monday; what can you do?

#7393: The GOP is not blameless, here.

Do you now understand why right-wingers refer to the GOP as "the stupid party"?

One of the biggest reasons Donald Trump was elected President in 2016 stems from the fact that the right wing was sick and tired of the GOP lying to them.

Starting when GW Bush was still President, every two years we were told, "You need to elect more of us! We don't have the votes, elect more of us, and we'll cut your taxes!" And once Obamacare passed, they added, "We'll be able to fix Obamacare when we have the votes!"

So we kept voting. The GOP populations in the House and Senate kept increasing. Eventually we got one of them, and the GOP said, "We sure tried, but we just can't do it without [the other one]! C'mon, get us over the top and we'll do it!" Every other year, they'd try and try and try but they just couldn't get the legislation to pass because "We don't have the votes."

Then they had majorities in both houses. "We can pass the bill! Oh, shucks, Obama won't sign it! If only we had the White House!"

This was the period when I suggested that the GOP pass bill after bill after bill repealing Obamacare, doing nothing but, sending a new bill to his desk every week for him to veto. And during the government shutdown theater, when Obama was closing tombs and statues to the public, the GOP continued its sad refrain, "We just don't have the votes."

Around 2009, 2010, it became bleeding obvious that the GOP didn't want to cut taxes or oppose any of the Democrat agenda. Like millions of other registered Republicans, I'd had enough of the failure theater they put on every two years. They weren't even trying; they were barely even pretending to try. And I got so fed up with them that when they nominated Romney to run for President, I voted for Gary Johnson, the freaking Libertarian candidate.

Understand: Through about 2008 I was a party loyalist. I'd get behind whoever the nominee ended up being, even if I thought he was a useless turd (*cough* McCain *cough*) because the process had been followed and the party had selected its nominee. That's what you do when you're in a political party; that's what makes the whole thing work.

But coming, as I did, to the realization that these people are not representing me, I did the only thing I could, which was to withdraw my unconditional support. That's why I voted against Romney; that's why I voted against Adam Kinzinger, and that other jerkoff whose name escapes me for the moment.

Then, Trump.

Initially, I was disgusted by his entry into the race. My wife (a big reality TV fan) was excited and declared she'd vote for him. I had the view shared by a lot of people at that time: "He's a reality TV guy! He can't be President! This is stupid." It was even worse than Arnold Schwartzeneggar being governor of California.

...but then I listened to him. By the time they held the primaries in Illinois, I was ready to vote for him. And you know what? I'm glad I did! He turned out to be the best President we've had since Ronald Reagan--and in fact is better than Reagan!

He made more good things happen in four years than FDR managed in sixteen. His policies boosted a moribund economy out of the doldrums and knocked unemployment down to the basement and made the United States a net exporter of petroleum! HIs policies and programs fixed a lot of ills at which two decades of combined GOP and Democrat governance had flailed uselessly.

And he did these things without the help of the GOP.

The Republican party didn't help Donald Trump; at best, they stayed out of his way. The "NeverTrump" maggots, self-styled "conservatives", sniped at his ankles continuously and supported Democrats. (Which is, by the way, is why I no longer call myself "conservative" but "right-wing".)

But now we have an election which the Democrat party is stealing right before our eyes...AND THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IS DOING NOTHING TO STOP IT.

"Oh, okay, looks like there was a little cheating, there. Guess we're going to have to have a look at that, later on."

*sigh*

* * *

More ballots were counted than the machines can physically count. There is a certain maximum rate at which the machines can process ballots. Assuming no problems, no paper jams or anything else, the four locations cited could have processed about 94,000 ballots in 2h38m. That is the absolute theoretical maximum; they could not have processed more than that in the given time period. It's physically impossible, because the ballots will not pass through the machines quickly enough.

Somehow, they processed 384,000. A mere 290,000 more than are physically possible.

* * *

Faux News' ratings are SHIT and I am laughing my ass off at them.

* * *

"Having Powell separated from the legal team leave DS leakers and assets in WH completely blind." Now that is an interesting observation. While Rudy Giuliani et al run around making noise and getting all the press, just what is Ms. Powell doing?

This observation is why I say, "Wait two days."

* * *

The Measles, Mumps, and Rubella vaccine--MMR--may have some cross-compatibility with COVID-19. Which would explain why so many kids are virtually immune to the damned thing.
I worked on Nuclear Biological Chemical at headquarters level and the Chinese response was exactly what I would expect if there was a containment breech and I didn’t know what had gotten out of the lab.
Very interesting, indeed.

* * *

So, came home, masked a bit of trim, then Mrs. Fungus came home and declared we needed to go shopping. Now I need to help her put up a little bit of decoration, make brine for the turkey, and fashion a pumpkin pie since the store was out of them.

...need to paint....

*sigh*

#7394: I'm baking a pumpkin pie

Before we went shopping I told my wife that under no circumstances was I going to bake a pumpkin pie, because I had no time to.

That resolve lasted until we got to the store and found a plethora--a panoply--of sweet potato pies, but no pumpkin pies.

So: hit the baking aisle and grabbed two cans of filling. Looked at the back of the can for what I needed: evaporated milk, heavy cream, pie shell--everything else on the list I had.

Got back to the house, ate dinner, wrote the prior post; then hit the kitchen.

First up: brine, using Alton Brown's recipe for a brined turkey. Do not mess with what works. Once that was heating, turned my attention to the pie, and just started dumping stuff into the stand mixer's bowl according to the list of ingredients on the back of the pumpkin filling can.

Mrs. Fungus: It smells like pumpkin pie!

Me: *sigh*

Had to mend the pie shell. Cracked. Argh etc--but it didn't take long. Dumped the filling into the shell, put the shell into the preheated oven, set for 20 min and walked away. At the 20 minute mark, turned the heat down to 375 and the timer for 40 minutes, and walked away again. Got the dishes prewashed and in the dishwasher, and started it up.

With about 10 minutes left, I checked it; the filling is above the level of the rim and it's wobbly. Not done!

I'm starting to suspect that I could have made two pies, rather than one, with the filling that I made.

I've never baked a pumpkin pie before. Here's hoping it comes out edible.

* * *

I was going to do some more work on masking the bedroom but my wife nixed it. Shopping, making a pie, making the brine, and washing the dishes was enough, she said.

Oh--and I helped her put up some balsam garland, on the fireplace mantel, to make it festive.

* * *

Meanwhile, I thought you guys said that health care was a right? If it's a right you can't put a restriction on it, you know.

I can't find a party affiliation for the guy, but he supports "green energy" and a whole slew of other Democrat policies, so I'm pretty sure he's a Democrat.

* * *

"The utter shit of Communism right there." A beautifully eloquent comment.

* * *

Jeeze 1,800 kilometers per second! Okay, as interstellar speeds go it's not much, but it's still the fastest-moving star in our galaxy. Though, it won't actually be in our galaxy for very long, at that speed.

* * *

Stove beeped. Checked the pie. Recipe says if you stick a knife in the center and it comes out clean, the pie is done. It doesn't look done, being all puffy and wobbly--but the knife came out clean. I'd expect that the filling contracts as it cools, making the familiar creamy and dense pumpkin pie we all know. (I know that when Mom made pumpkin pies, they would always develop a crack in the center.)

So: proof of the pudding pie is in the eating; we'll know Thursday evening if I did a good job or not.

* * *

For the first time since I started playing WoW in 2008, an expansion pack came out and I didn't start playing it immediately.

My wife and I have been too busy to play it. It actually went live on Monday, but she was tired and I was occupied with other things. Ditto for today. We probably won't have emuch time for WoW before Thursday. *sigh*

Friday I'm going in to work for a few hours to swap UPS batteries; then I'm going to get some 1x2s and take them over to Og's so we can use his fancy table saw to cut them to approximately the right profile for the cupola. Once we're done with that, I'm coming home and hoping to reassemble the cupola and slap another coat of paint on it before attaching the roof.

I have three things I want to complete this weekend: I want to get that bedroom painted, I want to fix the ceiling over the tub, and I want to complete the restoration of the cupola. I have everything I need for all of these, save the actual 1x2 for the trim pieces.

Weather report says the high temps will be near 50 on Saturday and Sunday; if I could actually reattach the cupola to the house that would be pure gravy. But I'm not going to hold my breath; what I have planned is already more than ambitious.

* * *

Incidentally, I found out what was causing the cough: the f-ing Pepcid. Delaying the lisinopril until morning did nothing, so I decided to try omitting the Pepcid on Monday night.

Besides the coughing, that interrupted my sleep and made me miserable, there was another serious annoyance: it made me drool in my sleep. Sure, everyone does that once in a while, right? I've woken up from time to time with a little bit of it; that's part of being human.

That would have been okay, if it was a normal amount. But no, I'm talking about how I'd consistently wake up coughing, with my beard and pillow and/or sheet sopping wet. Well, FFS, you'd think that if that saliva had gone down the hatch, instead of out and into my frigging beard, maybe I wouldn't have the cough--but on nights that didn't feature such an epic drool event, I'd still got the damned cough.

And the only way to fix the cough is to get up and get a cough drop and then sit on the sofa letting it dissolve. If I go back to bed with it still in my mouth, when I fall asleep either it falls out, or I drool cough drop goo onto the sheet. The cough makes it impossible to sleep, so I need to do something. I tried cough syrup but that didn't help, either. Sitting up disrupts my sleep and makes me absolutely flat the next day, but that way the cough drop doesn't cause any trouble.

But Monday night, having not taken the Pepcid, I slept normally.

I mean, 100% normal. I've always had a little trouble with my mouth or throat drying out, which is why I'm in the habit of having a bottle of Pepsi by the bed (or was until GERD reared its head) but instead of waking up, an hour after going to sleep, with an intractable cough, instead I woke up several hours later with a bit of a tickle that went away after I had a slug of cough syrup and cleared my throat a few times. And, no drool.

It would seem that taking the Pepcid in the morning would be the way to go, then. Still, it's most convenient to take the pill about an hour before bed, so I've decided to try a different medication: Prevacid. Generic, of course. Instead of being an H2 inhibitor, it's a proton pump inhibitor. My first impulse was Nexium, which I have used before, but then I found that chronic use of that one is contraindicated. FDA says "never" take it for more than 14 days at a time. Ooookay. No such warning I could find with Prevacid, and in fact for people with a certain syndrome that makes their stomach overproduce acid, chronic use is recommended.

So, we'll see how nighttime use of this stuff works. Got a 14-tablet pack of it; if it's good, then we'll stick with it. Otherwise, I'll go back to Pepcid, and just get used to taking it in the morning.

So annoying, though.

The worst part is, Pepcid also interferes with medications used to treat depression and anxiety and whatever else. That's probably why I had to start taking whole tablets of that; I remarked to my wife that I haven't been able to really relax since March...and March was when I got the diagnosis of GERD and started taking the freaking Pepcid. So, yeah, changing meds might be a good idea.

But: I've been sitting here for about an hour now, writing this. Medications went down the hatch, and it's time to brush teeth and wash face and hit sack. Wednesday is coming (White Wednesday) and after that, Thanksgiving weekend!