Monday, June 22, 2020

Yu visit the House

Since I'm writing this on Sunday, I'm gonna wish a "Happy Father's Day" to all the Dads, Step-Dads, Foster Dads and anyone else performing the paternal role for children regardless of their relationship to you.  It has become obvious to me that Fatherhood is less about sperm donation and more about responsibility. 

Unfortunately, it seems to be becoming more rare nowadays.  So....enough of the sermon.  On with the posting.

My family did a little bit of strategic planning andsurprised me by putting together a 4 way Skype call as my Father's day present  (Yes, Mrs J did give me a new bath towel, but somehow I think that was more of a statement than a present.)  Anyhow, I was summoned from into the kitchen and sat down in front of my iPad to see pictures of MBD and SIL, DIL and to hear the voice of Little J.

The other's all saw everybody.  Not sure what was up with that.

But, we chatted for about an hour and got a couple of belly laughs going.  The first was when MBD was talking about how to hang some hooks on the wall so they could hang towels and such on them.  I mentioned to make sure she found a stud.  She looked at her husband and said "I found one".  The conversation devolved from there.

The other one involved the URL for this blog.  I was phonetically spelling it out for them (to increase readership and thereby my salary) and got as far as Oscar Lima Delta Alpha Foxtrot when the younger set busted out into laughter. 

Well, I knew what the issue was, but My Beloved was a bit confused.  I explained that Sarge was really, really old and that the Alpha was for "as" and foxtrot was for ...

"Let's not go there, juvat!"

"Changing the subject, Aye, Sarge"

DIL mentioned that they had a cold front blow through Saturday and that it "only" got to 104.  But it was a dry heat.

Little J mentioned that tomorrow (Jun 23) will be his 179th day in a Hostile Fire Zone, so he starts getting a big bonus.

No.  No word on when he gets to return.

That would have made an excellent Father's day present.

So...It's been a busy week here at the homestead.  Progress has been steady and more importantly noticeable over the past couple of weeks, so I thought I'd post another walk through video.

Morgan Freeman is still laid up with his moving injury so was unable to narrate this movie. 
Unfortunately, the only people I could find to narrate this video saga are from Mongolia.  Sarge recommended them.

So without further ado, a new, improved video (Skip, you should be able to actually read the captions now) Video.

Back to the Skype call.  Ain't technology grand?  When I was on my first assignment in Korea, I called my Mom on Mother's day.  It cost me $10/minute and we talked for 10 minutes.  That was a significant portion of my monthly salary back then.  Now we can video chat (mostly) with 6 people in 4 locations around the globe for an hour and it's basically free.  Whoda Thunk?


  1. I'm having a bit of garage envy. If there's a car in our single garage I have to turn sideways to get to tool boxes. And a weird side effect of quarantine has been an increase in my sideways dimension.
    I'm imagining a cold day and a fire in your fireplace.

    I never called home from the Med. It was expensive and you had to wait in line. But one of the few good things about a carrier was mail being regular and often.

    Good video editing, the caption contrast works well and your transitions were smooth and didn't detract from the flow.

    1. Pretty sure your definition of cold and mine are entirely different. What I'd define as cold, you might be wearing shorts in. That having been said, I also am looking forward to fires in the fireplace.

      Mother's day was the only call home I made. Too expensive. I don't recall a line, but I do remember having to go to some place else on base and have an appointment to make the call.

      Thanks, practice makes perfect.

  2. Wow!

    Film of a house in Texas with a Mongolian rock band for the sound track.

    Juvat, you're really upping your game!

    House is gorgeous, love the kitchen, love the fireplace.

    Great job!

    1. Yeah, and I've had that tune stuck in my brain for 3 days now! As does Mrs J.

      Thanks. (for the earworm AND the complement ;-) )

  3. Nice production values on the vid especially the musica! House is really coming along, brickwork and cedar choice touches.....lots of glass....lots.... hope you have a good security system planned. The WWII generation had to make do with letters/snail mail for family comms, this year it's Skype/Zoom.

    1. Thanks, Nylon. A backup security system is planned. Primary will be 3 dogs and long sight lines.

      Yep, I like today's comms better. Although a face to face would be pretty nice about now.

  4. Internet: able to converse across the world, contains the sum of human knowledge, used to look at cats, ID10T's hurting themselves, and arguments with people you don't know.

    To lose the shake, put the phone or camera on an extended tripod and hold just under the camera. Allow the legs to extend quite a ways below. Or hang a weight on the end of it. Get the COG lower, it makes a difference.

    As an electrician, I loved all the boxes in the walls. WOW. Lots of memories of custom homes in that area before the bust in the mid 80's. My house was electrified back whenever they did it, and it had 2 plugs, 5 lights and 5 switches in the whole house. I just finished bypassing all the old knob and tube wiring this spring.

    Do you think that builder's sign will bring in any business @2:57? Just wondering.... ;) That is an amazing house.

    1. I'm sure the NSA surveillance drones beamed back crystal-clear images. Maybe one of the drones that runs the drones needs new digs?

    2. STxAR, thanks for the tip, I'll try that.

      We interviewed quite a few local builders when we first started the project. All were WAY (add several more "way"'s there) too expensive. So on a trip to San Antonio, we saw the Tilson office in Boerne and stopped in. We've been extremely pleased with them ever since. Don't want to jinx the process, but at this point, we'd recommend them hands down.

      I remember our house on Webb AFB in Big Spring was "electrically challenged". I got a record player as a present at some point and I remember having to make the choice of Lamp or Record Player. I've never liked overhead lighting since.

    3. a bear,

      Geez, I finally master subtitles, now you want me to learn to fly drones while filming? I'm having enough trouble holding the camera steady!

      Probably have to hire some teenager as a cameraman. Sarge, is that in the budget?

    4. You can also get a phone mount on a stick (like a selfie stick) and put about 5lbs of weight at the bottom. Hold stick vertically and you have your very own homemade steadycam. For heavier cameras, increase poundage.

      That way, come Halloween, you can make your very own "The Shining" video (first movie to use steadycams primarily, which is one of the reasons the film was so very freaky.)

    5. Hmmm....Might have to give it a try. Thanks.

  5. I remember being huddled around the payphone in the dorm hall, feeding it dimes and quarters while I talked to my then-girlfriend. Funny how long ago that seems. I cannot actually remember the last time I saw a payphone outside of an airport.

    1. Now that you mention it, I don't think I've seen one in years either.

  6. Nice work on the captions.
    I could get used to that music... in small doses.
    I can remember standing in line and then reversing the charges when calling home... maybe about three times a year and only from San Diego.
    There was a lot of letter writing back when the equipment was cheap but usage was dear.
    The house looks fantastic.

    1. Thanks Skip. Yeah, letters. What a concept. Course with my handwriting, nobody would want to read them, the message was more secure than even today's highest encryption algorithm. Sister Mary Elephant made me quit trying to write in cursive and go back to printing.

    2. One of the most powerful reasons for getting a home computer as soon as they came out with a decent word processor was my handwriting and spastic hands. Yes, I could type 80 words per minute, but only about 20 clear words per minute. AppleWorks on our IIc was a lifesaver.

      And my mother, as part of her occupational therapist skills, was a handwriting teacher. I was her greatest failure... Sigh.

    3. My cursive was always found wanting, but, until I started using a computer, my printing was pretty good.
      Now it’s AGATT (all garbage all the time).
      My stepdad had exceptional handwriting and tried to show my brother and I,
      Sadly his lack of patience and our lack of interest worked against him.

    4. Downloaded the tune.
      MB and I may make it our "Travelin'" music.

    5. Sounds like a plan. Best buck 69 I've spent in a while.

  7. Very nice home. Gonna put a ceiling fan in the great room?

    What's the SEER rating on your a/c system?

    Are you going to install gutters over the door areas on the outside?

    Nice touch on the HU. The heavy rockabilly beat goes well with their voices. Most people don't like just straight-up Mongolian music with straight-up throat singing, especially if they're Han Chinese, for some strange obscure reason. Hmmm. Maybe the Mongolian nation can stand at the border and sing a song or two of Ancient Mongolia, like the time when the Mongols kicked China's ass and then left, or the time the Mongols kicked China's ass and stayed.

    1. Yes, there will be a ceiling fan in every room to include the great room. The SEER rating is 17 and gutters will be going up all round the house.
      Thanks, I thought it went well with the vid.

    2. Excellent on the ceiling fans.

      17 is a good SEER. Excellent rating, and room for improvement down the line.

      Good on the gutters. Will be a great help when the proverbial frog-strangler falls from the sky.

      It's progressing rather quickly. Any word on possible completion date?

    3. Nah, the supervisor isn't gonna say, claiming company policy. Which may be the case as there can always be delays. So, I'm saying Christmas and hoping for sooner.

  8. Very Nice House tour!! Not only do I love the mantelpiece place, and the granite counters, but those cedar shutters are definitely top-shelf!!

    You must have been slaving in your woodshop for the past month on them to get enough made to go around the house! ;)

    Glad you had a lovely Dad's Day.

    1. Thanks Suz. I about to go up and feed the horses and do our nightly walk through. I've also got to look at the AC to see what the answer to Bean's question above. Painter's have been there all day, so hopefully they're finished. Tile guys (for the showers) were supposed to be here last week but fell behind. So possibly this week. The floor guys are scheduled for Wednesday but have to wait on the painter's being finished. There's electric conduit from the pole to the house, so electricity should be soon, I'd think.

      I'm still thinking Christmas and hoping to be pleasantly surprised.

    2. The way your guy is going, I'm betting y'all will be in by Labor Day!

      Better start planning the BBQ now...just saying...

  9. (Don McCollor)...The first time I was really awed with technical progress was a half century ago. Science fiction writers had long foretold the story of the first man walking on the Moon. But they never imagined that half a billion people would be watching it on live television...

    1. I remember exactly where I was that night. I was babysitting two kids from my Dad's Flight while they (all the adults) were at the O'Club (and I suspect the NCO Club and Enlisted Club also) watching it. The two kids and I were watching it also. It was truly amazing.


Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)
Can't be nice, go somewhere else...

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