Two Posts this morning – as my fingers wake up.  This being the first of said duo…

No shortage of things to talk about (so we will):  Before we roll up sleeves, though, a number of stops on the morning inspection report of our local conditions.  Some is amusing, others less so.  For example….

Septic Roulette here in the Outback today due to 3- more inches of rain.  We’re somewhere close to 9-inches for the week and that’s when sluggish septic shows up.  We never thought we’d be bothered with too much rain in Texas.  But in recent years we have seen almost 70-inches annually.  Almost twice Seattles and a thousand times what parts of Aridzona get.

People forget that terrible flooding in Houston a few years back.  It’s easier to think of Texas as tumbleweeds and packages addressed to Wile E. Coyote from Acme Explosives   amidst barren rocks and cactus.   Plenty of that west of the Pecos, don’t get me wrong.  But early Texas legends like Bowie were smart-enough to stay in more hospitable parts of the Lone Star.

Second note on the tour is my power center which errored-out overnight.  As a result, battery voltage was down to 25.2 from its usual 27 and change.  Power glitched-out overnight because of the lightning strikes that was-a bumpin’ the grid for all it was worth.

Have a phone call to Outback Power on the short-list for the coming week.  Not sure with two different software revs. if Inverter #1 should be Master and #2 its “Classic Slave.”  Or, if I should be running both in Master.  And how is that different from “Classic Master”?  Stacking #2 as “Classic Slave” (meaning #1 controls selling back to the grid and such):  When it’s configured this way it has errored out like this a couple of times.  But when both are run in Master mode, #2 doesn’t sell power so aggressively (which is its job until the lights go out), so I’m Ure-plexed.  Won’t matter when the lights go out for good, though.

This DC Power slavery thing will dissolves as an issue when we’re back on kerosene.

Stop #3 on the tour is the greenhouse where I am finally getting those new roof panels installed.  You’ll recall my BIL assembled the GH about 8-9 years ago.  But the combo of sun, hail, and falling limbs (called “dead-fall” out here in the woods, by the way) has done it’s number.

All part of the Stacked-Up Projects and Supplies that we’ve been accumulating for a couple of years, fearing all this was coming.  The north half panels will go on this morning.  It’s a four-ladder project…might have been less work to just rent scaffolding, but I doubt the rental joint is open.

OK, that’s the end of the tour.  But, every once in a while I almost feel like Noah.  Not building an Ark, but prepping is sort of like that.  Except we’ve been counting cans of mushroom soup two-by-two.

Anyone been shot over toilet paper, yet?  Leaves will be out shortly. I’m signing up for mail-order catalogs, just in case.

On the Disease Front

Onto the Daily Grim now – with the note that although there’s what looks like an improvement in the rate (green boxes, right side) remember these are the morning numbers and they will fall apart when the afternoon update comes along.

Flipping to Case Counts projected by our sometimes useful methods:

And then there’s the grimmest of the grim part:

More data tomorrow…much to work on around here today.  But the kids who went on Spring Break and brought home disease don’t deserve free college.  Try incarcertation, instead.

A Self-Screening Form

Do I have COVID19?”

I mean who hasn’t asked themselves that in the past couple of days, huh?  A cough…a sniffle…the mind trips-out…

Well, as luck (chance or circumstance) would have it, I helped my COVID-chasing firefighter/EMT/infectious disease hunting son work up a form fire department that you may find useful to keep track of your own health:

This is how Elaine and I  “self-screen.”

For example, I was wheezing a bit and coughing after getting half those GH roof panels up Saturday.

But, let’s run through the details:  71-year old male, climbing on four ladders for 5-1/2″ hours with wind and occasional showers.  Cleaning out gunk from the GH gutters and panel tracks – which were covered with a 1/16th-inch covering of chartreuse-colored pollen from the trees…Given that I had no temperature (brain was missing, too, by the way) and I’ve had asthma since Age 0, I’m just guessing I don’t have CV19.

Just saying…the form is useful as a reality check.  On the other hand, if you have a dry cough for a couple of days, and you went to the store where people were close, and no mask, no gloves and you don’t taking supplements to boost your immune system, and had a cold going into it…yeah, then that risk  would be high.  Temp check?

Shut-In America: Useful Time Sinks

No end of useful things to do around here: 

I sent my pal Gaye ( a note thanks to a reader tip from over in our (sometimes rowdy) Comments Section.

If you have an old computer and you know how to find the DOS prompt, there are plentiful treasures to be found over at VetusWare:

The site is devoted to “orphaned software” – and there’s a ton of it.  Stuff that just died an economic death.

Most of it is software that was really, really good and you just can’t find a modern app that does what some of this good-old-day DOS stuff did.

One of my favorites is a program called “MemoryMate” – RadioShack sold it in the late 1970’s I think – although “AskSam” was very similar.  The way they worked was simple:  You just put in rambling text notes and then,  when you wanted to find something, you’d put in a couple of keywords.

The search methodology was way-cool:  It would find sections of the text where the words were in close proximity.  Thinking back, seems to me AskSam was used as a search tool for the half-million words around the Watergate investigation.  Haven’t found anything as useful since.  MemoryMate, especially.  It was a TSR (terminate and stay resident) program…which was the genetics of Windows which came along later.  But, I digress.

Am  I the only one who missed SideKick terribly?  (There’s an app by that name for phones now…).  I’ve always thought of Windows as nothing more than SideKick with an enhanced notepad…thems was the days, t’weren’t they?

Advise from an Old Farmer

Rather surprisingly, a few “Famous Writers” read this site, one of whom  is this fellow by the name of A.G. Kimbrough (whose Amazon page is over here).  His newest book, “After the Virus Apocalypse” is now on my reading list.

The only error I have spotted is it doesn’t mention Urban or Peoplenomics…a woefully common shortcoming of all books, lol.

Back to point (since we have a few even though it’s a day off – what isn’t anymore, right? –  ol’ A.G. CC’ed me on “one of those emails going around” that lays out some really good stuff – rules to live by:  Advice from a Farmer:

  • Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.
  • Keep skunks and bankers at a distance.
  • Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.
  • A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor
  • Words that soak into your ears are whispered… not yelled.
  • Meanness don’t jes’ happen overnight.
  • Forgive your enemies; it messes up their heads.
  • Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.
  • It don’t take a very big person to carry a grudge.
  • You cannot unsay a cruel word.
  • Every path has a few puddles.
  • When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.
  • The best sermons are lived, not preached.
  • Most of the stuff people worry about ain’t never gonna happen anyway.
  • Don’t judge folks by their relatives.
  • Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
  • Live a good, honorable life… Then when you get older and think back, you’ll enjoy it a second time.
  • Don ‘t interfere with somethin’ that ain’t bothering you none.
  • Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a Rain dance.
  • If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin’.
  • Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.
  • The biggest troublemaker you’ll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin’.
  • Always drink upstream from the herd.
  • Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.
  • Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back in.
  • If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around..
  • Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.
  • Don’t pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he’ll just kill you,
  • Most times, it just gets down to common sense.

And adds A.G.  “Common Sense AND a Smile.”

Pappy always told me this to remember – and it’s served me well:

“You mouth will get you into more trouble than it will get you out of…”

Jury’s still out on what a keyboard will do.

(More after a round of East Texas “Septic Roulette” over in the guest  quarters…)

Write when you get rich,