Posted on Whatever RE the election

Earlier when it became absolutely clear what the results of the election would be, I started considering the rest of the time before the election to be just a period during which we would have to live with the embarrassment of the world watching the orange one make his horrible noises. It's like bringing a loud, rude, hyperactive, flatulent 6 year old to a fancy dress party, but at least the outcome is pretty well known.

Then in recent days, I started to get worried about potential civil unrest after the election if the losing party decides to cause trouble about the outcome.

Even when riding my bike, which is when I normally de-stress, I am thinking about the election. I see Trump signs in yards and think "That should read 'Vote for hatred, bigotry, spite and anger in 2016!'"

I'm trying not to even discover who among my co-workers might be voting for him, because I think it might be hard to think of them as actual real, thinking people if I find out. I can't imagine how anyone at this point can vote for the (adjectives omitted here) man.

Yeah, it's been a bit stressful.


Today was mainly vehicle maintenance day. I've been fairly neglectful. To try to combat this in the future I've added all the vehicles to the maintenance tracker app that I have on my phone, which can bug me based on mileage or time. As a result of adding more vehicles, I am now less satisfied with the app. There's no way to have different reminders for different vehicles. If you have "clutch hydraulic fluid" on one car, it's there for the other even if it's an automatic. If you have 10,000 mile oil change reminders for the car with synthetic oil in it, there's no way to set them to 5,000 miles for the one with conventional oil.

In any case almost all the things are now caught up on maintenance, including the lawn mower. I should probably change the oil on the big generator. I can't remember when it was changed last. I think I'll just check the color of the oil.

This afternoon was the final session of taking portraits for the church directory. I don't know how I got shanghaied into that but at least it's over.

This evening I had a quick repair job for a friend. Some cabinet lighting units were dead and needed new 1 watt LEDs soldered in. It looks to me like they got wet, though they could have overheated as well. They superficially look very well built, but the lens does not fasten down tight, and that's all that holds the PCB down to the case for heat dissipation, and I think they might come loose and overheat. So I'm 3D printing some little rings to take up slack and make them tighten up properly. I'm using ABS for higher heat tolerance. Hopefully they won't get so hot that it runs out of the case. I will run them overnight to see how hot they get.

I also have a doorbell illumination test going on upstairs. A friend has had trouble with this and asked for help. This is absolutely as simple as electronics get, but since he's had two failures (done by someone else) already, I just rigged up a quick test to leave hooked up for a few days to confirm viability.

Power splah'

I'm running my credit card close to the edge (my definition = barely enough in the checking account to pay it off) but payday is tomorrow, I have several projects to work on, and I've had it with the cheap bench power supply that I have. I went ahead and ordered the Korad programmable bench supply. At least I will be able to set a voltage properly. The USB interface seems interesting. Writing an interface for it might be a cool reason to learn Python or something.

Book finished: The Family Trade

The Family Trade by Charles Stross


I came very close to throwing this book away in the first quarter. It improved enough that it's up to "OK" - and I might read the next book eventually, I've been told they get better.

Nothing actually happens in this book, it's entirely world-building.

Also I did the audiobook, and the reader was sub-par IMO.
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Calvin vs bike

The Ride

I got a rude surprise on the way home Monday night. They ground the pavement on Island Lake Road for about 3 miles of my route. It was brutal, I was probably only making 5 MPH or so; it felt like riding a jackhammer.

So today I went to work via Chelsea. It's a pretty decent ride really, but it's about 33 miles one way.

On the plus side, my legs are coming back, my average speed was 17.14 MPH. Over 17 is in a range I'm OK with.

On the minus side, I had a flat tire. I guess I should put a Gatorskin on the front wheel too. The one on the back stopped me from getting flats there.

I seem to have knocked the front wheel a little out of true. I felt a dragging after changing the tube, and when I got to work (about 10 miles later) found that there was a very significant drag (enough to make it hard to turn the tire by hand). I was able to tweak the brakes to remove it, but I'll have to true the wheel this weekend.

Book finished: Vicious Circle

Vicious Circle by Mike Carey


In very much the same noir/urban fantasy vein as the first book, I liked this even more. Both have kept me guessing for almost the entire book which I love.
It's worth mentioning, like the first book, this is not a book for kids in any way. There is some violent and somewhat disturbing stuff in here.
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Book finished: Death's End

Death's End by Cixin Liu


I actually finished this a couple of days ago and waited to let my thoughts about it settle for a bit.

The first book was a bit of a slow start, but then got interesting to me. I enjoyed the second. This one started out much the same, but about halfway through it just started to get bizarre, and it just went downhill from there.

It's very imaginative, but it's really more like a bunch of junk the author thought up hammered together and strung together on a few characters which are hopped forward in time in order to provide some cohesion.

Three stars is still "I liked it" but I really can't say I "really liked it."
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