Friday, September 30, 2011

Well, we didn't die.

However the rear brake went out on the right side. It was all like “HHHRRRRRRGGGGGAAAARRRRRR” and we were all like, “What the? Is that us?” And the break was all like HHHRRRRRRRGGGGGGGRRRGGRRGGRRR.” And then we were all like “Fuck.” 

We made in home, but now we have to take the car apart again, bleed the breaks, and then put it all back together again. Also this is our busiest time of year for work, so there is some careful scheduling going on. 

Also, to throw another wench into the crappy engine that is my life, the dog has fleas. Which means that on my days off I have been thrown into a mess of vacuuming and poisoning. I swear to god that my washing machine is going to explode. It's not a bad infestation, by any means, but I still have to treat and treat and treat again. 

I also had a moment when I read something on the net that said, 'winter does not necessarily kill fleas' and after I picked myself up off the floor from laughing too hard I went to find my husband and tell him the Internet was being an idiot. It easily gets to be - 4 up here and I'll be damned if you can show me a flea egg that can take that. So outside should take care of itself. 

I don't have time to treat all the rooms at once, so I have to take each at a time and hope that works. I'm vacuuming like mad, and also using a spray poison, because I will live in toxic chemicals as long as it means I don't have fleas. 

Death to fleas, I will cut them down before me! I will let no flea live beyond this day! This day we fight, we fight to take back our carpet! We fight for our dogs and cats! We fight for our pillows! 





Monday, September 26, 2011

So we fixed the car.

There was cursing involved. We had to make two trips to the auto parts store before we finally had all the pieces to the puzzle. The first day we replaced the rotors, which was pretty easy, but then we realized that the rear calipers were shot. Both of them. 

That was fun. 

I realize that most of you have no idea how the brakes on your car work, so I'll give you a run down in case this happens to you in the future. The rotors attach to the wheel, and are what the brakes grip onto when the car stops. The brake pads sit inside the calipers which crush the pads against the rotors like they are giving them the biggest hug ever. 

Placing the brake pads into the calipers was like trying to solve one of those metal puzzles, like the kind you used to be able to order of catalogs. You know where all the pieces come apart, but you're damned if you can figure out how. Like that, but with a car. One side fit together nicely, but the other side was screwed up at the factory somehow, and neither pad wanted to go in. Or, worse we would get one side in, but then it would pop out as soon as we tried to fit in the other side.

The problem was that the piston inside the caliper was too far forward and was not allowing the pads to sit inside correctly. We adjusted it (by we I mean Scott.) Remember this point, because it will haunt us later.

Finally we got all the pieces back together, and bleed out the brakes. If you are wondering, bleeding out the brakes is not fun. It's actually pretty easy with two people, but it's most definitely not fun. Scott takes it for a test drive, reports the brakes are very soggy, and that the emergency bake doesn't work at all. We bleed the brakes again. Tighten the emergency brake cable. Curse. 

We discover, by taking off the wheels yet again that the right rear tire is not braking at all. Remember that adjustment we made. We had to now adjust it back. After pretty much spending a whole day and one evening trying to make unyielding metal bits into a brake system, we finally have a working car.  

We think. 


I really hope we don't die on the way to work today. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Life is kicking my ass.

So in addition my husband almost dying, and then him breaking a rib, our car decided to die on the way to work today. 

We were driving down a mountain behind the most redneck truck I had ever seen. It was a matte black ford ranger with these huge jacked up tires. It looked like they had painted it with spray paint and to add the icing on the hillbilly cake was the three guys crammed into the tiny cab. They slowed down to turn and about that point our car began to make a sound I like to call 'screaming in pain'. 

I don't speak car very well, but I'm pretty sure it was saying something along the lines of “OH MY FUCKING GOD THIS BURNS LIKE LIQIUD FIRE!” We pulled over immanently and got out of the car. The first thing we noticed (and by we I mean Scott) was that the brake rotors on the rear tires were incredibly hot. And by that I don't mean that they were terribly sexy. 

There is a certain sinking feeling one experiences when standing next to the highly advanced machine that you were relying on completely to take you places, that for whatever reason is not working. We looked at the car, and then we looked at the huge mountain we had driven down.* 

“Do you think we can make it home with no breaks?” I asked Scott, trying not to think about how much a tow would cost. 

“Sure,” He said simply. “It's all up hill from here.” 

Of course it wasn't but we ignored that fact. The sound had stopped because the broken thing was now broken and did not see a point in continuing to scream about it. On the way it dawned on us that we had to call the office. Having backed out of several jobs due to illness, I felt terrible about telling Boss Man that we weren't coming in today. 

Boss Man understood completely that this was in no way our fault, and told us just to worry about Scott's stress test tomorrow and to fix our car. He did reveal that the client had wanted to add an extra person, but that he couldn't find anybody, and now he had three slots to fill, which may or may not happen. I felt awful, but even though we still had my Dad's old car there was no way we could drive all the way home, switch cars and then get to work on time. Plus my Dad's car, which is now my car, well lets just say that I'm not sure that it will make the three hour drive to DC and back without dying. 

So now I'm at home. We have already made one trip to the Advance Auto Parts store, replaced some parts, and ordered more parts. Called relatives who know cars and gotten idea of the problem. 

It's gonna cost us.

If my blog was wildly popular I would offer to draw/paint you any goddamn thing you wanted if you gave me ten bucks, and email you the JPG. But nobody reads this blog yet. Yet. Someday. So I dunno. It's a catch 22. My husband is broken, my car is broken, and I can't go to work until both of those things unbroken themselves. 

Pity Party Tonight! BYOB! I'm going to start drinking now. 

* I know if you live near the Rocky's you will claim that our mountains are really glorified foot hills and that you don't know what we are complaining about, first of all fuck you, and second my state does not believe in guards rails or switch backs so why don't you try driving down a mountain with no rear brakes here and see what the fuck happens to you. 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

We must have hit the luck fairy with our car.

This past month has been murder. First my Super Best Friend came to visit, which was awesome. We got drunk, played the Wii, got caught up, walked our dogs around my super sweet land, and generally had fun. That was until we were playing the Wii and Scott looked behind him to see that my dog had eaten Super Best Friend's shoe. My dog had never shown much inclination to chew anything she isn't supposed to, but that day she just felt it was time for some shoe. Some Super Best Friend shoe. 

The month headed down hill from there. The day after my friend left, Scott drove off to work only to call me and tell me that he was taking himself to the hospital and that I should call our employer type person and let him know that he won't be in. I did the usual where I run around and panic for awhile, followed by acceptance. 

Apparently, he narrowly avoided having a heart attack. For some reason, his blood pressure shot through the god damn roof. However they gave him medication, and both his doctor and the ER doctor told him he could go back to work. 

Fine and dandy. Except for the fact that his second day back at work he hit himself in the side with something he was lifting and quite possibly broke his own rib. 


This pretty much eliminates working on the chicken coop. I just hope we can fix the things we need to fix before winter comes. I really need to get some more firewood, but I'm working so much I don't know when the hell I would order it. This month is trying to murder me. No, that's not right, it's trying to murder Scott. 

Wish me luck you guys, I'm gonna need it. 


Thursday, September 15, 2011

The underground cultist dream.

I just had this... dream.

It started out in this run down city. Where the grass grew up through the cracks in the sidewalk and all the buildings were leaning, leaky and old. Like Baltimore, only the buildings had better roots.

Our story starts when we go to a run down dilapidated building. Magnificent arches, big enough to drive a car through and tall enough to walk an elephant under, sat on each side of the place, complete with little arches on the sides. The ceiling was vaulted, like in the old cathedrals, with cracks and dust coating everything. The room was free of pillars, so all of the space in the large entry chamber was open. There was a sad feeling to this place, it was truly a tragedy that such a beautiful space had fallen into ruin and regret.

All life was not lost however, because as I watched twilight came over the city, smoothing out the edges, I saw a group of cloaked figures making there way into the building. They passed though the great room, and though a narrow arch down a series of winding corridors. Finally they reached an ugly circular door set into the stone work. Rust had taken over the door, and stained the white rock on each side of it, making it look like some sort of unsightly growth. An old man with crazy eyebrows was there, and he would open the door to admit people, sometimes whole families, into the narrow hallway beyond.

It turns out these people were part of a secret cult/religion and believed that their gods lived under the earth. So beneath this building they had dug a series of tunnels, so they could meet in secret and worship. The earth around them was warm, probably clay, and they had work lights strung up, giving the whole space a warm cheery feel. I distinctly remember the warm walls being bathed in the yellow light, the effect was beautiful. I could see why these folks would leave the concrete city of dust and decay and come down here.

Then the robots showed up.

It turns out there cult/religion/whatever the fuck was illegal and the city did not take kindly to them digging around under their shit. Unfortunately the local authorities felt the best way to deal with this was to take their robots and attempt to murder everyone. So as the people were coming out, unawares from their underground sanctuary the robots and the police/military/angry people made a ring around the building. If your thinking this doesn't go very well for the people inside, your right.

This bit wasn't too clear, but I remember the robots were black, with a big glowing red eye thing in the center of their heads. They were at least ten feet tall, with big arms, and I think smaller legs. Like maybe big robotic gorillas, but it wasn't very clear. They proceed to lay waste to this building, ripping it apart and crushing it. They did not appear to have guns, or at least I couldn't tell if they did, but you would think if you have the technology to make robots you sure as hell could make guns, but maybe they were forbidden or some shit. I dunno.

Anyway I was treated to a montage of the building falling in while people frantically ran though the dust, coughing and screaming while robots crushed everything around them. Their were families where the father was carrying his children out of the ashes. It was pretty fucking sad here people. I was treated to another view of outside where a smug looking commander was surveying the damage. At least he seemed happy about all this.

Afterward, when the robots had cleared off, we see the survivors meeting in a small room, lit by a single sputtering flame. They decide to leave the city, and move out to the country. Finding a good spot with a few houses on it, they decide to park it, and build a few more. Being busy as bees, they start a new life, carefully secretly, began to dig a new tunnel inside the corner of their town hall. Everything is right as rain.

I began to know some of the individual people, Crazy eyebrows is like there wizard/shaman guy who leads them, and there are a few individual families that are really the heart of the town. There is also a pretty young girl, with reddish blond hair that forms lovely ringlets all down her back. She is not yet old enough for marriage, but all the young boys have their eyes on her.

Well one day the king, yes they have a king, no he's not a robot, was riding though his Kingdom. When I say riding I think he was in a car, but I'm not sure, but he definitively had some robots with him. He sees the girl when she's out and about in her village and decides right there that he has to marry her. So he goes back to his giant well maintained palace and tells his magician/shaman that he wants this girl. So in a move that surprises no one, the magician orders the village burned to the ground and the girl captured. All the soldiers are made to memorize a picture of the girl, so as not to accidentally kill her, and off they go. There are no robots this time.

They proceed to burn down the village and kill everybody that isn't her. She freaks out and makes a break for it, running into the town hall, and hiding down the tunnel. Like an idiot she doesn't secure the door after her, and the magician starts poking around until he finds it, having been startled at not seeing her at all earlier. He follows her down and proceeds to drag the terrified girl out of there. The village is gone, everyone she knew and loved is dead, she's just having a really shitty day.

They take her back to the place where the king gets her cleaned up, and tells her he wants her to be queen, because having a queen that hates your guts is the best move ever. It also doesn't help that he's old enough to be her father. He gives her a grand set of rooms and some rich girls her own age to be her companions, but they act a little afraid of her because at this point she has like PTSD hard core. Also it becomes rapidly apparent that the magician has also fallen in love with her, and keeps finding reasons to just drop by and chat. Well, things are getting really sticky, and she has no idea what to do. Should she run away with the magician, who burned down her village, or marry the king who hates her religion?

Unfortunately I did not get to see what happened next, as it was time to wake up and I have to pull a bunch of nails out of boards today.

I can't help but feel sorry for her, even though as soon as I woke she doesn't exist anymore. Which is even sadder. I'm just going to stop talking now.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

I want to go to Medevil Times (the resturant.)

While I stating at the hotel for the wake, I happen to pick up a brochure for Medieval Times. For those of you that don't know, Medieval Times is a theme restaurant. Or maybe more like a dinner theater. Basically you sit in a giant arena and watch a bunch of guys in medieval dress duke in out in the ring while eating food straight out of the state fair.


Why do I want to go to this over priced tackstravaganzia? Three reasons.

1. I love horses. I would never own one, because I am poor cheap and lazy, but that doesn't mean I don't want to watch them do entertaining things for an hour or so.


Neigh goes the pony.

2. The men in the brochure are attractive. Meow. Also the king kinda looks like Sean Connery.

Sean Connery?

I find this attractive. Rawr.

This is his O face.

3.You can drink.

The only way this would be better is if they had a dragon. I would pay extra to see that. I mean how can you not want to go see this? There's greasy food, beer, and a high possibly of injury. This should be an American pastime. How can you not love a theme restaurant where underpaid attractive men ride around on horses and smack each other with sticks? I'll bet you there aren't many men in that audience.

Someday I will go to a Medieval Times, and I will get drunk, and it will be awesome. Someday.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Halloween is coming!

Holy shit it's September already!? You know that means right? Right? Halloween is NEXT MONTH. Sweet Jesus, I have only just started on my costume. I still need to do so much to it. 

Okay stay calm Holly. Step one, find awesome party to go to. Step two, finish costume. Step three, make traditional batch of super awesome Halloween cookies and possibility some Halloween cupcakes. 

The problem is the past two Halloweens I had no fun whatsoever. The first year it was because we were working and I am addicted to money so I did not get to go out, and the second year my stomach broke and my doctor told me I could not eat candy or drink beer. So this Halloween, I not only have to have a good time, I have to have two years worth of good times. Wish me luck. 

It's only, like, the best holiday ever. 

I don't think I'm going to decorate the house mobile home this year because mobile home living is getting really depressing which is why we are going to start building a house next year. Also I use most of the things I buy for Halloween decorations year round, because you can never have too many gargoyles.  

This year I am going as a crazy steampunk lady. I purchased the costume at a Big Lots for 12$. I should probably point out that steampunk is probably on its way out if I can find it at a Big Lots. I didn't even know that you could buy costumes at the Big Lots in August. I think a showed great restraint in not purchasing the magnetic mailbox cover. I wanted that goddamn mailbox cover, but Scott said I shouldn't buy it. He probably said this because we had just finished putting in a new mailbox and adding on fancy lettering instead of the black magic marker jobber on the old one. Mostly though I think it's because he is not a team player.  

Team Halloween that is. 

I wonder if it's too early for Halloween music? Nah, Scott will like hearing the ghost busters theme song and Nightmare Before Christmas for two strait months. 

Duh na dun na dun, duh na na na na duh, when there's something strange, in neighborhood, who you gonna call...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The chicken coup floor is finished.

It damned near killed me. We worked all day on this bitch. We started at like nine and just finished the last pour right before it got too dark to see shit any more. 

What you have to understand is that we are using an electric concrete mixer from Harbor Freight that only holds three cubic feet max, and we were mixing at max. So we basically did a 16' by 12.5' slab three cubic feet at a time. Including the run-to-town-to-buy-more-concrete-in-the-middle-of-the-pour adventure. Or alternatively, we are bad at planning. I was in charge of running the mixer, which basically meant that I never stopped moving the whole time. As soon as one batch was done I would start the next one. 

We couldn't have just covered the floor and picked up the next day, because the next day we had like a six hour drive so we could go to a wake. I woke up on the morning of said wake and thought 'oh boy, everything is pain.' I felt like someone had ran my over with a bus. A big bus. Filled with fat people. I drug myself around the house, packing clothes, and toys for our dog who was getting dropped off at the in laws for some spoiling.

Here I am, half dead, wandering around the house holding a cell phone charger in one hand and a dog bone in the other, trying to remember the thing I was supposed to do before we left (shut the windows.) Meanwhile the dog is freaking out because we were doing LEAVING THINGS and she did not want to be locked in her kennel while we were gone. She would follow me around like glue, hugging my legs and getting in the way, the whole time bombarding me with looks of terrible sadness. However her ultimate panic about us leaving usually comes in the form of her trying to stop me from putting my shoes on.


My attempts to explain that she was coming with us failed. Also, my attempt to explain that she should pee now because her next chance would be in Winchester VA also failed. Apparently, she does not speak English very well. Also having never before experienced a car trip with a dog before, I suddenly have a much greater understanding of what it is like to go on a car trip with a young child. 

Me: Sit down! Your going crazy back there!
(She has a special thingy that hooks her to the seat belt, but it doesn't stop her from dancing around like crazy.) 

Dog: Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy, I'm in the car and were going places! Car car car car car car! Places places places PLACES! 

Me: Calm the fuck down. Thats better. 

Dog: Oh no, I'm gonna throw up. NOW


Scott: What the fuck are you two doing!?!

Which is how I found myself half in the backseat, twisted almost all the way around, one hand on the dogs collar one the other holding the blanket under her head. I don't think I was meant to bend that way. 

I think I must have been a walking zombie at the wake, although I tried to explain that it was due to having to build a new chicken coup from the ground up and then I would have to explain that a lived on a hobby farm, and this somehow involved me doing an interpretive representation of the rooster mating dance to several of my coworkers. Shut up I was tired. 

Look, I think the point here is that you shouldn't invite me to anymore wakes in the near future. 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The chicken coup foundation is finished.

We have just finished the foundation for the new chicken coup. I am ecstatic. We started this project all the way back in April, when we hand dug out the foundation. 

That was not fun, in case you were wondering. It is my policy to do all the digging I need to get done for the whole year in early spring because that is when the ground is soft and bare. Also since I hate the heat it allows me to work when it's colder outside. 

You might think that above statement is crazy, which means you have never had to dig anything in your entire life before. Also, you suck. Moving on, I am happy this damn thing is finally done.

It might not look like much, but what have you done today?

We sang a congratulatory round of 'We are the Champions' and then I yelled that we were getting shit done like mother fucking champions, which I can do because I really don't have neighbors. 

It might not look like much, now, but I assure you this was no small task. Now all we have to do is back fill the foundation, level the floor, get sand, put sand down, pour the concrete for the floor, build the walls, and then transfer the roof from the old coup to the new one and then we'll be done.*sigh*
Onward and upward.