Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I hired a plumber to fix all the drips, quirks, breaks and leaks that my plumbing as accumulted over the years. My shower head was dripping, kitchen drain was leaking, garbage disposal was dieing and the instant-hot was dead.

I tried to do some of the fixing my self, but as I got deeper into the project I realized that it would take me two days and half a dozen trips to Home-Depot to do a job that I couldn't be trusted to do right.

The plumber did a great job. Over the years, a succession of amature plumbers has worked under my kitchen sink. He cleaned all that up-- moving the drain and the connections so that I now have more space under the sink.

For the first time in months the space under the sink is dry.

Also, I now have an instant-hot that doesn't make funny tasting hot water. It's very nice.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The carpenter ants are still be in the house. We can hear them russling the the ceiling.

I'm giving the house a second treatment with different chemicals.

The first thing I did was to tape the vacuum cleaner house up to the crack that the ants use as an entrance. I vacuumed the crack for a few minutes.

Next, I saturated the area with different, hopefully more powerful, chemicals.

If that doesn't work, I'll call in the profesionals.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Last night we had a small party at the store. It was on the quiet side for store parties, though, it being memorial day weekend, I'd expect many people to be out of town.

There is a lot of left over dessert-- cakes, cupcakes, cheese cake. Bleah.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

It was my birthday yesterday.

Matt and Sandy gave me a bottle of Absente, the safe American stuff, not Absinthe of the olde days.

Two of my employees gave me a pressure cooker. We had a good laugh at that. They did not give it to me so that I would hurt myself. They both regularly use pressure cookers. A couple of weeks ago we talked about presure cooking and I off-handedly said I wanted one.

After dinner we headed over to Bates and Clem for drinks.

All in all I had fun.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The ants apper to be dead. I'm still going to squirt more chemicals around the house though.

RO and I now frequently walk into a room, and listen to the silence, trying to track down any traces of noise.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Ants and Mice.

Saturday was a beautiful day. Warm, sunny, gentle breeze. There are blooms everywhere-- the rhodie across the street, the apple trees in the back yard, the rosemary in the front. RO and I were going to go to a street fair, but when we walked outside, everything smelt and felt so wonderful that we decided to work in the yard, weading and landscaping. It was worth it our yard is finally coming together.

By late afternoon it got so hot that stopped working, sat by the pond and drank pino collatas.

Later on we had a wonder full dinner. Watched some TV. Then went to bed.

While I was laying in bed, I heard a gentle scratching noise. I couldn't tell where it was from. I walked around the room, listening to the walls and roof. Finally I spotted it. It was coming from the north east ceiling.

I walked outside to take a look. I took a flashlight and looked around the eves. That's when I saw it-- flakes coming down from a crack in the boards under the eves. I pointed a flashlight at the crack and looked in-- carpenter ants.

Not good. I live in a log cabin. Wood eating bugs are bad news.

There wasn't much I could do in the middle of night. RO and I turned up the music to down out the sound of the ants. Then we went to sleep.

Bright and early next morning I went to local home supply store and invested in chemicals; bug foggers, ant and termite sprays and spikes. RO built a plastic tent around the crack, put a couple of foggers in and then sealed it up.

I placed the trap all around the house. The sprayed all the eves and the house perimeter

I heard once that a mixture of borax and sugar can kill ants. I went for the borax and poured a cup out. It was full of mouse shit. A good cup of mouse turds was on top of the borax.

That really confused me. Maybe the mice were hiding in the borax box.

Now I have to lay out mouse traps.


Friday, May 16, 2008

Last night we had drinks at the neighbors, Bates & Clem. It was good to see them.

Bates is a train engineer. He told us that so far this year there have been two cellphone/train deaths in this state-- people walking on the train track, talking on the cell, not realizing that an 80mph train is about to run over them.

We also talked about gardening, the maple blight, and summer plans. We are havinging beautiful weather right now. It was good to sit out side with a glass of wine and friends.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Since Mulligan's dog has cancer, C2 wants me to offer Mulligan a 'sympathy cat.' I like the idea but will not offer up my cat.

I am trying to teach my cat to use the toilet. It may just work. Right now the litter box is next to the toilet and about six inches below the level of the seat. If I slowly elevate the litter box, say an inch a week, he continues to use the box. If I move the box much more than that, the cat abandons the box and shits on the floor.

Once that box is at toilet level, I will move the box over to the toilet. Once on top of the toilet, I will cut a hole in the bottom of the box, then slowly enlarge the hole over a period of weeks.

What could possible go wrong?

Saturday, May 10, 2008

"'Collectible' like 'eatable' or 'drinkable' is not high praise."-- Roger Ebert

RO spent a thousand dollars at an estate sale on Royal Daulton figurines. I am a bit annoyed with him because money is tight. But, I've looked through eBay, and he is probably right in that we can sell them quickly for a profit.

At first he tried to keep the figurine purchase a secret. He has many boxes of treasures and collectibles. A few days ago he told me he found a box of figurines and decided that it was time to sell them. I was kind of happy with that decision. I would love to have fewer of his collectibles They just sit there, get dusty, take up space and make me feel bad when one becomes chipped.

Today while I was doing the books for the store I found the cheque used to pay for them. When I asked him what it was for it broke out in his "I'm busted" grin and fessed up to the purchase.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

The business. The business. What about our business....

We have an opportunity. There is a new mall opening up in more upscale part of town. We are talking with them about opening up a second store in this new mall.

It has risks. The rent is two and a half times our current rent-- sales will have to be big from the start otherwise there will be trouble. That is a big leap of faith, especially in a recession.

It also has an opportunity-- the mall is offering us six figures to build out for our space. We can have a great store for that amount.

I think that by this time next year we will either by very successfull, or very broke. There is no middle ground.

I have a well paying day job. With our current store, the budget is such that I can affort to loan some extra money when the store needs cash. The new store will require so much money that it must pay for its self from the start.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Mulligan's dog is very sick. C2 told me about this. I sent Mulligan a symathy email...

From: Barry
Sent: Wednesday, May 07, 2008 9:39 AM
To: Mulligan
Subject: Your dog...

Hi Mulligan. I understand that your dog is not well. I hope
things work out. You have my sympathies.

Mulligan replied...

From: Mulligan
Sent: Wednesday, May 07, 2008 12:49 PM
To: Barry
Subject: RE: Your dog...

Thanks, she is not in any pain
because of the morphine, but the cancer is spreading – our main worry is that
her leg bone will fracture because it is so weakened and she runs on it normally
because she can’t feel any pain.

Thanks for your


Monday, May 05, 2008

It was a nice day yesterday. RO and I worked at the store. There was a Cinqo De Mayo celebration at the park just down the street. All the parking lots around us filled up People were parking in our lot and walking away, so I had to go on parking duty.

It was kind of fun to chase these people away. Most of the time all I had to do was to stand near their car and watch. When they saw me, they would pull out of our parking lot and drive away. A few people would ask permission, which I had to deny. By that time we only had three empty spaces.

One guy tried twice! He pulled into a space, saw me, then pulled out his cell phone and started talking on it, watching me the whole time. When I didn't go away, he pulled out of our lot. Then, five minutes later, he pulled back into our lot! When he saw me he immediately pulled a U turn and left.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Last night was Sandy's birthday. We had dinner at Benihana and then drank and sang at the Crescent, a karaoke bar on Capitol Hill.

Today RO and Sandy are both hung over.

RO was exceptionally drunk. He sang several songs. He danced wildly. Then at last call, he just left without saying good bye to anyone. When I caught up to him, he was linked arm in arm with two strangers who were walking him up the hill.

The next morning RO realized that he hadn't said good bye to anyone. He said that he was too drunk to think. He knew he had to leave, so he did.

Matt said that Sandy had puked in the car on the ride home. Sandy spent most of the night worshiping the porcelain god

How do Matt and I feel? Fine! We limited our selves to three drinks. Matt and I are both over six feet and two hundred pounds-- three drinks is nothing.

The fun thing about not being hung over after a night out is that it feels good to torment those who are. By the time you reach mid life, you should know your alcohol tolerance and either not drink that much, or not need to work the next day. If you can't manage that, then you are fair game. You need to be taught a life lesson.

Hmmm. I'm getting the eurge to crank up Iron Maden on the stereo. Gotta go!

Friday, May 02, 2008

I could have written that entry much better than he did.:)
-It's all grand, like.

Very ironic since it comes from someone who updates their blog every three months! Are you still in Athens? How are things?

Last night was Stacey's galery opening. Last year she and three other photographers took a trip to India. The four of them pooled and polished their best photos.

The photos where good. Although I found myself often thinking "I could take photos like that!" I guess that's the difference between an arm chair quaterback and the real thing-- you don't get the credit unless you actually do the work.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

C2 wrote me, asking me what he should write on his blog. I told him that he should blog about him self, and what he wants to remember. That if he hasn't done something worth remembering every couple of days, then he should thick twice about how he is spending his time.

Now that I've said that, I find it's hard to apply that advice to myself. Most of my life is day-to-day stuff. Entertaining but not important.

I've re-read all my "May" entries going back to 2001. And that's confirmed my suspicians. Most of the stuff I write about is entertaining. I rarely write about my work.

Good things have happened in May though...

I got to meet Tommy Boy in May.

I bought the cabin in May.

And my brithday is in May. On the 20th.