Sunday, August 31, 2014

That Was Interesting. Now with postscript.

Seems I found a way to pinch the Vagus Nerve

stopping my heart of a few seconds. Did it two times Friday causing me to faceplant. Took a policeman, three paramedics and an ambulance crew to convince me to go to the hospital. That, and a housemate threatening to slash the tires on my vehicles if I didn't.

Long story short, now have a pacemaker. I'm home, but not back in battery. Took my several minutes to figure out the reason I was having trouble focusing on the monitor was one lens had fallen out of my glasses.

Thank all of you for your kind thoughts. Guess I won't be scheduling a flight physical now.

Need to wait several days for the facial swelling to go down. Then, the doctors will reset my nose. They say it is quite painful, but they will give me a strap to bite down on.

Fuck me running.

Have a new client that contacted me for a new assignment.. Said job is a 93 mile 1 1/2 hour round trip for me, so compensation negotiation was in order. Also, sent him a picture of my face. Sort of the whole "professional image" question being involved. Stout fellow, no problem, just get me the photos, please. Looks like a Wednesday am trip to the People's Republic  of Boulder.

A note about the photos. I'm no pro, the camera does all the work. They just need to be somewhat framed, in focus, and show the areas of interest. Main camera is a simple Olympus point and shoot with a 12.5x zoom. For a lot of assignments, I must remain on public property, but need details like the property address and roof damage. The other camera is a Canon Rebel SLR.  Everything is JPEG.

Didn't get a tablet. That potential client left out some important information in his recruitment. I'm too damn old to be climbing in and out of grain augers, and wouldn't if I were younger and fitter.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Handsome Man

Been fighting a bug now for three days. Fainted this morning, and face planted into a burlap upholstered rolled up futon. Loosened two teeth. Think it may curtail my social life for awhile.
 Always look at the bright side. My friend, Dirty Al Imhoff, fainted and hit his temple on a sharp corner, killing him.

If anyone is interested, you now know what I look like close up.

No, I haven't sought medical treatment. I'm a man.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

911 Dispatcher Instructions

Over at The Truth About Guns there is a kerfuffle going on about following the 911 Operator’s instructions.

By good fortune, I’ve never been in a situation involving a firearm but did have one bad experience. A driver had a seizure and crashed. When I approached the vehicle, I could see him flopping around, but held in place by his seat belt.

 The 911 Operator started giving me instructions.

“Sir, you need to keep him from swallowing his tongue. I will talk you through the process. We are trained to do this”.

“Lady,” I replied, “Get the ambulance here. In this day of AIDS, I’m not putting my finger in any stranger’s mouth”.

She was offended. What I knew was the fire station was eight blocks up the street. They arrived while he was still having seizures. Had he started turning blue, then I would have acted, maybe.

Around 1970 going to college, I had a night job at an air freight forwarder. Smelled smoke and stepped outside where I observed flames on the roof. Went back inside and told the manager, Tom. He quickly called the operator (pre 911 days) and shouted, “The fucker is on fire! Send a fire truck,” and hung up.

“Ah, Tom,” I said, “You might want to call her back and give her our address”.

I’m predisposed to not do what I’m told to do, so any dispatcher “telling” me what to do will probably be ignored. I may ask for advice, but I will be the one making the decisions on the spot. YMMV

Sunday, August 24, 2014

California Wine Crisis

Reading about the drought in California, and now an earthquake, may impact price and availability of California wine. This is what I drink, with an occasional venture into Merlot. Think I should stock up now?

Yes, yes, I'm an uncivilized redneck. Single malt and Dr. Pepper? Why are you yelling?

Colorado Produce

Colorado grows some excellent foods and my favorites are Olathe sweet corn, Rocky Ford cantaloupes, and Palisade peaches. Summer treats.
Today I'm enjoying some Palisade peaches, picked ripe from the tree, along with some pears from the same place.

Sadly, the cantaloupes may soon be a memory. A listeria outbreak last year hurt their reputation. Hail storms this year. The biggest threat is Front Range municipalities buying up water rights. 

In the years we lived in Washington State, I would send my sister a box of Walla Walla sweet onions and she would send me Rocky Ford cantaloupes. Most assuredly made no sense economically. One year UPS lost track of the melons. When the box was finally delivered, the melons were a bit ripe, as in, dripping from the box ripe.

For now, will enjoy the day and the good food it brings.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Close Call, Mobility Divison

Me, westbound. Her, eastbound on her mobility scooter on a busy street, not on the sidewalk. Cell phone planted firmly on her ear. Small dog in her lap. Suddenly, she swerves in front of me, and into a driveway. She gave no indication she saw me. The dog did. Stood up, and was ready to jump. Stupid bint!

I understand an elderly person doing this. This woman looked to be in her fifties. Oh well, hadn't done anything all day to raise my pulse rate. Think I should thank her?

Saturday, August 16, 2014

What The ^*+# Is A Tablet?

Another company is considering using me as an independent contractor. One of their requirements in an Android device. which I have, in the form of a Samsung “Smartphone”. This is a requirement for another company for whom I do some work.  Now, I really dislike the Smartphone, and only use the app for their operation, and, of course, as a cell phone.

The volume of work the potential new client wants, combined with bifocals, fat and fumbling fingers, patience deficiency, and a small screen, has me looking for alternatives. Being totally cheap, I shopped the various pawn shops in the area. Looking online, there are many choices under $100. Craigslist has many sellers. What to do?

Next stop was Best Buy, where I encountered a Salesman, an eager young man whom I would instantly hire if I still ran a car lot. He did tell me they are on salary at Best Buy. After listening to my needs, and working through my technology Luddite skill set, he started with their cheapest tablets.

“Why are the screens blank”, I asked?

“They don’t last very long”, was his reply. “We have problems keeping them going, as they are on all the time”.

Then he took me over to some Samsung tablets. Large, bright screen, better construction, and, he assures me, much more durable. My fat fingers easily worked the screen, and my aging eyes had no problem reading the displays. $179.00 plus tax, but including inland freight, handling, pack, croak and choke, and mop and glow.

“What about a protective case”, I asked him?

“About $80”, he replied, “But for $40, you can get a two year warranty. If you drop it, you get a new one”.

Wow, he was good, but not yet top notch, as I left without purchasing.

Anybody have advice? What I will be doing is checking inventory (floor plan checks), where you have a list by serial number, and you physically put your mitts on each item on the list. The recruiter is excited because I’ve done these thousands of times over a thirty years period selling cars. Most of the work is outside, in all kinds of weather. You need three hands, since a magnifier may be needed to read the serial number, and a small ladder to reach a reading level (think Ford F-550 4x4). Thus, you are going to drop something at some point.

My other concern is, how much time will I be working? This will be the fourth, “part time, supplement my retirement income”, job I will be doing. The numbers the recruiter is quoting sounds like close to a full time job.  Then there is the oopsie.

“Ah, WSF, can you drive down to ___________ and do six checks? We will pay you extra, of course”.

Oh well, until I win the lottery, money is attractive (and needed). Win the lottery? Some Fairchild 24 will have a new owner. I’m too old, and fat, to climb into the cockpit of an F-86 Sabre (not to mention that pesky need to have appropriate skills).

And this describes my morning after visiting relatives last night.