You are currently browsing the monthly archive for March 2010.

Yep, you read that right. Drunken Goat Cheese.

Way back when, during my Army days, my buddy John and I would hit the town and buy misc types of cheeses and a crackers and then munch on them over the coarse of a weekend. Well, this habit has stuck with me, and now Roberta has taken to helping with this crazy habit.

The other day she picked up some more cheeses for me, and one of the new types was this Drunken Goat Cheese. Basically they take a fairly stout cheese and soak it in red wine for 2-3 days.  It gives the cheese a really unique flavor. Not sure how I like it yet, it’s a bit hardy. Goes okay on a cracker, but alone, it’s a bit strong. It is different, I’ll give it that.

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Our friends Lynn and Chuck now own Sea Harvest restaurant and seafood market down near Cannery Row.  Because of this I now know a lot more about seafood than I used to. I’m also spoiled because I get locally caught fresh fish at a good price.

A buddy of mine sent me a link to this video.

Here’s the link. Forking wordpress won’t let me link directly to the video without charging me extra for it. So, you just get the link.

Dangerous Seafood

A scary news story about the condition of fish coming from China and the far east. Lot’s of nasty surprises hidden in that fish.

Well, Roberta finally went and had another scan today. Unfortunately we now have to wait until the 14th to hear anything. Hurry up and wait, and wait, and wait.

We haven’t really said anything about how her cancer has been progressing because we don’t know. We know her liver enzymes are wacked, we know there are new tumors in her neck, we know she feels like crud more often and tires a lot easier. But, that’s all we really know since the last scan almost 4 months ago.

There’s this mental debate about getitng the new scan results. We want to know, but we’re also afraid of what might be shown. Without knowing one way or another your mind toggles between worst and best case scenarios.

We finally stepped up and bought Roberta a new car. It’s a 2007 Dodge Caliber, dark grey with Homey wheels.  No name yet. The 2008 Dodge truck we had was Eva, the bug is Wally. We’ll have to think of something original for this one.

2007 Dodge Caliber

During John’s first tour in Iraq he sent Molly and Nora matching T-shirts. They became jammies. As they grew they became just normal t-shirts that they would wear.

This was back in February of 2003 when John sent them. The girls still wear those t-shirts. They are getting pretty wore out. Last night Molly snagged hers on the desk and tore a hole in the bottom of it. She freaked. “This was from Uncle John! I can’t get another. This was from Uncle John!”

So we explained to her that we could put the t-shirts away for them, or they could continue to wear and enjoy them until they were gone. It was okay. Uncle John gave them the shirts to wear. Even though he’s gone, he’d be happy with whatever they decided, save or wear. They both decided to have us save them for them. When we went into our room later they were both on the bed folded up with one of Uncle Johns soft desert camo hats.

Some days those we lose are closer to us than others. The girls love and miss you John. Rest easy my friend.

Well I went down to Salinas today and took my $191 certification test for Linux+. I passed it. So, what’s this for? Well, this fills the Government requirement, DoD Directive 8570, showing that I am now qualified to work on the computers I helped design and build. Seriously. I’m not kidding. Without this check in the check box I would not be considered qualified to work on the tiny, piddly, little clusters I’m currently building. Go figure.

I’m not sure how the scoring works on these things. There are 98 questions total and the scoring is  “a scaled score between 100 and 900”. Why this confuses me is that with the practice tests I always seemed to get one or two wrong, but on the final test today I got a score of 900 out of possible 900 again. That’s twice in a row. The Security+ test and now the Linux+ test. I’m thinking there must be some slop in the system or something.

Anyhow, I passed. Now I just wait for the systems to catch up so I can get my actual Cert. Oh the joy.

Oh Ya. Besides filling a check box, about the only thing my $191 per cert gets me is permission to show another one of these on my business cards, resume, etc. Only it will say Linux+. Somewhere I still have one for AIX also.

Security+ Certified

Well, I think I finally figured out my vacuum leak. After trying everything and going through a crazy amount of starter fluid, with no luck, it seems I finally figured it out.

I was afraid to say anything at first because I had thought I’d found the problem several times now. Yet it kept coming back. This time it’s been 5 days and I’m still idling and running smooth.

The fix? The darn vacuum hose from the vacuum advance on the distributor to the carburetor was old and sloppy on the distributor side. So, under higher rpms it would suck just enough air for the motor to stumble. I saw this on the freeway mainly. But when I was working on the bug and spraying carb cleaner, brake cleaner, wd-40, and starter fluid all over the place trying to find the bloody leak, it wasn’t leaking because the motor wasn’t shaking and the vacuum pressure was too low to cause it to leak.

Let me tell ya, It was a bugger to find. Anyhow, it’s running good now. Knock on wood as we Americans would say, or Touch Wood as the Scottish folk would say.

Anyhow. Even as tempting as it was, I didn’t light the bug on fire, I just kept plugging away and finally found it. Although, setting it on fire and watching it burn was very, very, tempting.

Roberta and I decided to go out for a quiet time. We went out to Latitudes over by lovers point. We got the usual, Sliders, Calamari, she got a 7 up and Cranberry and I got a Sierra Nevada beer. Our typical get away for some quiet time.

The place was about half full. There was a guy playing live piano music. We sat by the fire and chatted for a while and listened to the music. Then a lady stood up in the middle of a song and went ‘ahahahahahahah’ and promptly hit the floor and started seizing. Needless to say the place erupts with people running in circles. Turns out there was a nurse at the bar, which was good. She helped stabilize her until the PG fire department arrived.

I guess it’s just because we’ve been through so much that we assessed the situation, figured we couldn’t help, and stayed where we were and chatted.  The only thing I ended up doing was going over and moving the bar table out of the way so the paramedics could get through when they arrived. Promptly too. 5 minutes after the call they were there.

So much for a quiet night out. Next up after things quieted down was a couple of ladies decided to dance and make out to the piano music. We decided to deal with our own drama and came home to watch a payperview movie.

I really need to get out more.

While working on the bug Roberta came out and we’re standing there chatting and I notice one of the tulip plants is moving. At first I thought maybe wind, but no, none of the other plants were moving. Maybe a cat? Nope, nothing around it. Then I can hear the crunching noise, like someone eating a carrot. Aha! It’s a gopher eating it from below.

So, I sneak up on said tulip plant. Right about the time I get there the plant starts getting pulled down. So I carefully reach over, grab a leaf, and pull it back up. A moment later it starts going down again, so I grab a leaf and pull it back up.  The gopher and I did this seven or eight times before I finally let it have the plant. Besides, Roberta already thinks I’m nuts. Playing tug of war with a gopher only adds fuel to her belief. 🙂

Well, today I did some more work on Wally. This time I

  • removed the speedometer and installed a new light so that all of them work now. 6 lamps total in the speedo.
  • replaced the shift rod bushing to tighten up the shifter and stop the rattle.
  • tightened up the shift nob.
  • adjust the valves
  • clip and reconnect the timing advance vacuum line.
  • cut and replace the backup light wires and ignition wire. They were frayed pretty badly and would sometimes short out.
  • replaced the rear deck lid seal.

I test drove wally up to the parts store and it seems to be running better. There’s been a vacuum leak somewhere that I haven’t been able to find. It’s been driving me nuts! I’m hoping it was a loose end on the vacuum advance hose.  Because, even with starting fluid sprayed all over the place I can’t find the leak.  I’ll know in the next day or so if it was the hose.

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