“Just toss it downstairs! Or out in the garage!”

December 10, 2013 11:10pm
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photo (13)

If there’s one thing that I admittedly kind of miss about living in Northern Michigan, it’s storage space.

Pretty much every house around up there has a basement, which is basically like a whole ‘nother house underground! Not to mention my Mom’s house has a ginormous garage with lots of room to stash things, so there was never really an issue of not having enough room to put stuff when I lived up there.

I think I’ve parked in the garage of the house that we now own maybe twice, and it was mainly because we were going out of town and I really worked at it to squeeze my car in so that it didn’t have to sit outside the entire time that we were gone.

Last house I never got to park in the garage because it was laid out stupid and had shelves and a huge workbench on every wall, so my car physically couldn’t fit inside. Not that the garage door opener ever worked at that place anyways…

The house before that, where Sara & I lived for a good 3.5 years – now that was a nice garage and we both got to park inside … probably because we hadn’t been living together too long, so we hadn’t accumulated that overflow of stuff yet, and most of the junk that we did have could cram inside the closet in the spare bedroom.

In this house, said closet is still packed, and the closet in our bedroom, and there’s still a bunch of crap in our family room that has yet to find a home, and … well, see above picture for further examples!!!

I feel like every new place that we move into has less and less storage space, although it’s probably just that the longer we’re together, the more stuff we’re accumulating, be it tools, or pool toys, or pictures for the walls. Granted, right at this moment we also have a bunch of my sister-in-law’s stuff out in our garage because she currently lives with us, and that takes up a little corner of space, too, but I was out there this evening trying to get to the Christmas lights … and I never actually did because I spent all of my time wading through piles and filling up the garbage can with the latest candidates for that big trash heap in the sky!

I’m thinking about finding a few things to maybe stash up in the attic because apparently we have one of those now, even though admittedly I’m not all too keep about going up there … but maybe just some basic stuff that we’ll likely never need, like a bunch of the closet doors that we’ve removed from several rooms to make the closets easier to access – don’t really need those until if/when we ever sell the place again.

I’m sure there’s honestly a ton more that could ultimately just be thrown out altogether – do I really still need my old VCR, or even the CD player that came with my home theater system that technically isn’t even setup right now because I’d just as soon replace it with something newer and more compact that actually has enough inputs for all of my toys these days???

I’ve also got a whole bag full of diving gear out there that even if I do ever find my way back into that hobby again and manage to lose enough weight to reasonably sink to the bottom of the sea, there ain’t no way in hell that I’m ever fitting into the same wet suit that I wore when I was 17, so why am I even keeping that thing?!

There’s also an old CRT monitor out there that I used to use with my home server that hasn’t lived in years, there’s the kiddie pool for Cleo that we bought her for her birthday last year and now have no reasonable place to put it, lots of paint cans in various shapes and sizes and colors of which many are probably empty and can get pitched, a couple of old fish tanks of varying sizes, some replacement fence boards that I guess I forgot to nail up, a very rugged travel case full of microphones and cables from my PA system that’s still up in Michigan and I’m not really sure how just it found its way down here, two SCUBA tanks that might still be good because being overweight doesn’t impact an aluminum tank, although they’re very old and definitely need to be re-tested … the list goes on…

LOL – so maybe I’m looking at this “problem” wrong and instead of finding more space to store crap, maybe I just need to learn to better manage my crap and get rid of scads of stuff that I haven’t fit into or turned on or hung on my walls in half a decade or more!

Bleh.  😕

  1. People who take the baggers at the grocery store up on carrying their bags out to their car, even though they clearly don’t need the help and just don’t feel like carrying it themselves. I know that it’s a store policy to offer, but it still seems like something that should be reserved for those who really need it.
  2. People who don’t STOP when they see you backing out of a parking space, instead zipping around you and then acting like you’re the asshole for not letting them go first.
  3. When the cashier at CVS just assumes that I don’t have a CVS card and doesn’t even ask. I don’t carry the actual card on me, but I always give our phone number when they ask because one of these days we might actually remember to use the points!
  4. People who drive more than 10 mph under the speed limit, taking it upon themselves to regulate traffic in our neighborhood.
  5. Whoever complained to the HOA that our front lawn needs to be re-sodded … even though it totally does because it really looks like shit right now and I highly doubt that any amount of water, fertilizer, and/or love can bring it back from the dead at this point.
  6. That there aren’t any real IMAX screens in our area anymore because I miss seeing movies on a ridiculously gigantic screen.
    1. We technically still have the dome, but that doesn’t count for completely unfair reasons because I’ve never actually been there…
    2. …and as far as those mini-IMAX screens are concerned, those have never counted in my book…
  7. I’ve been walking a lot more at night lately, but the bugs must be looking at me like I’m a feast carrying a leash because I’m coming back way too bitten up to make it worth the effort.
    1. …unless that helps me to lose weight quicker, then dine away…
  8. That the next Lego mosaic that I want to do is going to cost me a small fortune in bricks and it’s not even for me!
  9. People who fish in retention ponds, despite there being a clearly written, highly visible No Fishing! sign literally feet from where they’re standing. Like, they must’ve had to walk by the thing to get to the pond! Plus, A) do you have any idea what kind of chemicals they put in there?! and 2) the fish that do live in there are there to keep the bugs down, not give your hillbilly ass something to do in between episodes of Family Feud!
    1. And it’s not like we don’t have veritable crap-tons of fishing places that aren’t retention ponds all around the area! Remember that big GULF that we live on?!
  10. The fact that I still don’t have AC in my car. Seriously.

domain

I really hate crap like this.

Admittedly I haven’t gotten one in a while, but I literally renewed some domain names with GoDaddy two days ago – albeit not for the domain listed here – and the final purchase price for one .COM came to a whopping … $10.38.

Or, you know, I could pay these shysters 337% to renew and transfer my name to them – you know, because they took the time to send me this kindhearted, completely non-misleading notice!

What grinds my goat about these types of things is that while *I* knew that it was a ripoff and not worth more than 10 minutes of rant-blogging here, they send these things out in bulk and I’m sure there are plenty of other unsuspecting recipients who don’t know any better, thinking that these are actually coming from their own registrar … I mean, the word America is right there in the name and everything! No way that an American Company could possibly scam a hardworking small business that barely even knows how to get to its own website, much less what all is involved with running it.

People see this, it looks official, and so they act on it, not even realizing that their domain name fees are about to triple and they’re turning over the address to their online home to the sleazy, door-to-door snake oil salesman of the domain registry.

The last time I ever paid $35 for a domain name was to Network Solutions back in 1999. It was for 1 domain – justlaugh.net – and I promptly lost it when I moved to Florida in 2003 because it expired and they immediately put it back on the open market without so much as an e-mail reminder.

Funny, I had a handful of other domains that survived the trip just fine … because they weren’t registered with Network Solutions.

In comparison, I just let a domain that I had purchased for my sister expire and not only did GoDaddy send me reminders every two weeks leading up to the expiration date, but I also got four more in the two weeks to follow after the expiration date – just to make sure that I definitely didn’t want the thing anymore.

Please don’t be a sucker. Find a domain registrar that you trust and then ignore anything you receive from anybody else telling you how to manage your domains.

👿 👿 👿

Computer Woes

November 18, 2012 5:38pm
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I’m about ready to throw my PC out the window. I honestly think the dread of doing all of my writing on an iPhone is just about the only thing holding me back at this point.

My problem is, Chrome has started being a real dick lately. I have no idea what’s changed, but the last couple of weeks it’s started sucking up noticeably more resources than it ever did before, to the point where I actually get mouse lag trying to move my cursor across the screen! You know you’ve got it bad when you change to a new window and have to watch Windows re-draw the screen line by line like it was 1985 all over again…

I don’t really think that I ask too much – I mean, I’ve got a few bulkier apps open like Photoshop and Fireworks, and Word and Excel, on top of admittedly a ton of tabs across several windows in my web browser, but it’s nothing new. I’ve worked this way for years, and now all of a sudden it’s like my computer is just ready to throw in the towel and croak, and although I get that eventually computers do die just like everything else, I guess I just didn’t realize that it was getting so old! Is a quad-core processor with 4 GB of RAM really that out of date??? I haven’t even looked at computers recently – how much are they cramming in those things these days?!

I guess I wish that I could just blame it on Chrome having a memory leak, or Flash being generally terrible as we’re used to doing, or maybe a need to reinstall Windows again after several years (or upgrade now that I’m officially 3 versions behind on XP!), but have we just gotten to the point with heavier sites and dynamic content that a couple of hundred MBs is actually normal for a single browser tab to suck down while it’s sitting on Facebook or Twitter???

If that’s the case, then my next PC is going to need a lot more than 4 GB of RAM. 🙁

anti-virus woes…

August 29, 2012 9:51am
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So what, pray tell, is Avast actually doing when it’s running in the background on my PC all day and night???

Desktop PC randomly stopped connecting to the Internet, despite device reboots all around, and now an AV scan is throwing up all sorts of matches in various cache files that I kinda feel Avast should’ve been catching earlier! Is it time for me to switch back to AVG or something else, or do I need to be running more than one app yet again to protect my PC from this kind of crap???

This always astounds and infuriates me – unless your mailing list consists of rolls of toilet paper stacked away in a room full of filing cabinets, there’s no reason in the world that unsubscribing me from your mailing list – which I never asked to be a member of in the first place – should take up to 10 business days.

Way to ensure that I never order anything online from one of your stores ever again, Sears…  👿

I always feel like buying a new shower head is kind of a crap shoot. You go to the store and gawk at all of the fancy, new options like rotating heads and a bajillion different settings, and then you bring one home to find that half of that crap doesn’t actually work because your water pressure isn’t strong enough…

I don’t know whose house they actually test these things at, but this one didn’t even seem that fancy – just a stationary head and a handheld one that you can either run separately or at the same time … that is, as long as you don’t mind the handheld do-job being super droopy because there’s never enough water pressure leftover to push anything more than a slight trickle out of it!

Maybe it’s the water company’s fault, maybe it’s the fault of the people who built the house, or even those who design these shower heads … all I know is that I shouldn’t have to get a team together to analyze which shower head would be optimal for my particular water pressure configuration…  😥

frustrated with fireworks

July 14, 2012 11:45pm
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Let’s be clear – the 4th of July was 10 days ago.

And yet here tonight, on the fourteenth of July, people around my neighborhood are still shooting off fireworks in the dead of night in celebration of god knows what!

Now normally I’m a pretty big fan of fireworks, as noted by the numerous fireworks photos that I’ve taken over at Disney World throughout the years, but you see, the thing is – my puppy doesn’t come with me when I go to watch fireworks over there. And not only because they won’t let her in the front gate, but also because she’s really, really afraid of fireworks.

The reason I bring all of this up is that ever since she got spooked last week when we tried to walk her a few hours before it even got dark on the 4th, puppy hasn’t wanted anything to do with outdoors and has taken to spending a lot more time hiding in the closet than she normally does. I haven’t been able to get her to go on walks with me since – we’ll get a few houses down the street and then she’ll panic and want to come back home again, trembling all the way.

I don’t understand why Floridians want to celebrate everything with explosives. You had your fun around the 4th, so now give it a rest so that I can go back to walking my dog at 11pm in peace!!!  🙁

A toll is a toll, and a roll is a roll…

July 11, 2012 2:25pm
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Electronic tolls are kind of a touchy subject for me here in Florida.

On one hand, I think it’s kind of cool that many of our toll roads have now gone entirely electronic, meaning that to pay the toll you simply have to keep a transponder in your car that automatically deducts the required amount as you pass through each plaza.

On the other hand, though, I still haven’t bought one yet, and so instead it leaves me in this awkward scenario where I don’t tend to carry rolls of quarters in my car, and occasionally I end up having to do something like this…

Yep – that’s a check for seventy-five cents to cover one of the tolls coming back from Legoland yesterday. It will cost me half again as much to mail the damn thing as the toll itself! I wish I could pay the thing online, or even better, with my credit card at the toll plaza, but I always find myself wondering what out of state people do when they’re driving around Florida and wander onto a toll road without any means to actually pay when they want to get back off…  😕

Maybe it’s time to finally splurge for SunPass after all!

I already paid you!!!

July 7, 2012 3:56pm
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A pet peeve of mine with Tampa Electric / People’s Gas – our current utility providers … why can’t their billing system check and verify whether we’ve already paid before sending out their friendly reminders like this???

Dear Valued Customer,

This is a friendly payment reminder from Tampa Electric that your electric bill due date is approaching.

If you have already made your payment or have scheduled your payment online, please disregard this notice.

If you would like to make a payment at this time please click on the following link: http://tec.inetbiller.com

Regards,

Tampa Electric

It was one thing with paper bills when they could easily cross in the mail, but with everything electronic these days, there’s no excuse other than a poorly designed billing system to pester your good customers who actually pay their bills well in advance.  😕

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