Sep 292015

I think this morning I finally had my Eureka! moment on why I’ve been bumping along.

I’ve been wasting time. And it’s generated formidable guilt.

How have I been wasting time? Oh, just in a general kind of way. I’ve not been making consistently good decisions about what I allow to capture my time and attention as I go through the day/week/month/year. I’m not doing enough of what I really want to be doing. I look back at what I’ve done over a period of time, and say “yeah, all right, but what else?”

I’ve not sufficiently appreciated how blessed I am. There are a lot of people who get up and turn the crank every day just like I do, except they’re also saddled with marital discord, addiction, financial difficulties, or any number of other significant rucksacks of misery, of which I am thankfully free.

But doesn’t that reasonably compel me to make that much more of what I’ve been given?

Moreover, it’s yet another arena in which to make a significant error of perspective–what I’ve come to think of as the “well at least” trap. I’ve written of approaching parenting that way, too. “Well, at least I’m not as bad as that guy.” Wow, really? That’s the line I’m going to use? Relativity can be quite seductive.

I want to keep my expectations realistic, but I also want to be honest with myself about my capabilities, and frankly, a baseline measurement of “yeah, things are going OK” is beneath them.

Here is a day/week/month/year–a glorious gift from God. What will I do with it?

 Posted by at 9:04 am
Sep 242015
  • Madison Pike reopens tomorrow! I’m looking forward to seeing how much traffic this pulls off Madison Boulevard in the evenings. I hope it’s significant.
  • Thankfully, I was able to declare victory over the washer last night. I’m out $185 for parts, several hours of aggravation, and a little blood. (Not fun, but the upside is it would have been a $400 service call, i.e. dangerously close to “totaled.”) I can’t say enough about‘s customer service and repair help. I find appliance repair roughly as enjoyable as a prostate exam, but their step-by-step videos definitely minimize the pain.
  • Dad is just back from ten days in Europe, including the Oktoberfest, which (you may know) is the biggest single event in the world by attendance. Looking forward to getting together and hearing about it soon.
  • Alabama has had highly accurate quarterbacks for so long that I’ve gotten really spoiled. It’s hard to swallow holding my breath when Coker loads up. I mean, with AJ he’d get a quarter-second into that lazy, lobbing release, and it was money, man. You knew it was a touchdown. Now, apparently, with a pass downfield, it’s back to the same, oh-shit vibe as was necessary at numerous points in the ’80s and ’90s. Maybe he’ll settle down.
  • I’m impressed with the current condition of Milton Frank Stadium. East played there last week, and wow, what a nice facility. I think both Lea and I expected there to be more “patina.”
  • Looking forward to writing at Rocket City Mom again soon. You should look forward to reading me there.
  • Farewell and godspeed to Yogi Berra, one of the most remarkably decorated athletes of all time in terms of championships and awards, as well as a verbal treasure and all-around wonderful fellow. RIP.
 Posted by at 12:01 am
Sep 222015

It seems Donald Trump isn’t too happy with an ad Club for Growth is running about him.

In fact, he’s sufficiently bothered by it that his lawyer has sent a cease and desist letter. (It claims to be from his lawyer. In fact, as it contains phrases like “your pitiful little group,” I think it’s legitimate to ask whether Donald Trump wrote this himself.)

This is just what we need, right, America? Because when someone says something about you that you don’t like, the very most presidential thing you can do is lawyer up.

Gee, for a guy who bleats so much about what a fighter he is, that seems a bit…soft.

But to respond maturely, he’d probably have to say something of substance, and that’s not his shtick. He’s more like

“We’re going to be looking at a lot of different things. A lot of people are saying bad things are happening. We’re going to be looking at that and plenty of other things.” – Donald Trump, September 18, 2015

Everyone’s all hysterical about why he didn’t correct the questioner about Obama being Muslim. Really, the sheer nothingness of his answer is a lot more alarming. I tweeted this quote and one of his supporters actually retweeted it, as if it were complimentary.

Sounds really catchy, though, doesn’t it? It has great slogan potential. Donald Trump. Because a lot of people are saying bad things are happening.

Trump supporters, you’re angry. I get it. Supporting this ridiculous and malignant narcissist is not a productive path, no matter how “yuge” it feels to you.

The Trump campaign doesn’t make it to the end of the year, much less to the first primary.

 Posted by at 10:30 pm
Sep 212015

What have I been doing? I’ll tell you what I’ve been doing. I’m locked in mortal combat with my washing machine.


And combat is definitely the word for it. I have two big ouchies on my hands, and about ten small ones.

See, the washer leaks. But it doesn’t leak somewhere easy, like the water inlet or the drain pump. No, it’s leaking from the bottom of the tub.

So I got my parts from (a site I recommend without reservation, incidentally). New tub seal and bearing. The seal is not so bad because you can get to it from the top, but to replace the bearing requires that you take the washing machine apart as far as it goes, pretty much. The video at is twelve minutes long.

It took me, uh, longer.

I started some time after church yesterday. I did spend about three hours getting the tub nut off, because the wrench that I bought wasn’t budging it. I finally cold-chiseled it in half. (I had the foresight to purchase another tub nut when I bought the seal and bearing.)

The repair was smooth, pretty much, except for that. I had all of the tools I needed, I had enough room to work, and so forth. It was just about 8:00 last night when I got it all back together to test it.

And it leaked worse than it did before I started. Awesome. With whom do I speak to get my afternoon back?

After confirming with that I could return an electrical part even if it had been installed and then removed (told you these people rocked!), I ordered a clutch assembly for it. Best I can tell, that’s about all it can be at this point. It will be here Wednesday when I get home from work, and as I’m now a seasoned traveler down to the molecular level of this washing machine, I’ll install it Wednesday night.

If it’s fixed, then kudos to me for staying with it. If it’s not, then I cut my losses. Back goes the clutch assembly, and we get a new washer.

In the meantime, I washed some clothes at Dad’s today, like a college student.

 Posted by at 9:00 pm
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