AuthorTopic: Meanwhile back at the 'stead  (Read 191301 times)

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1065 on: June 23, 2018, 10:37:33 AM »
Well, the old truck has now made it under its own power to two different shops, and is now home to rest in the back yard as its mortal remains move toward a state of greater entropy, although, from a human perspective, once the wheels stop turning, the show is pretty much over.

The diagnosis is not unexpected. The truck could easily be fixed for several thousand bucks, but would still no longer be dependable, because there are so many digital components in today's modern cars that can crap out, and all of them expensive and not amenable to repair, just replacement.

Another one "threw a code" when I cranked it to drive it to the (second and final) shop. Because it was easy for the shop to see this problem, with their handy diagnostic computer idiot box, that's the one they thought must be the problem. No boys, that's a brand new one. Add it to the list.

Get this:

The truck went into a sort of what I'd call "safe mode" because the throttle is electronically controlled (no direct mechanical connection between the accelerator pedal and the FI throttle body) and it has two redundant sensors, both of which must agree in order for the throttle to work. The reason for this redundancy goes back a few years to when some electronically controlled cars were accused of "running away" when they were supposedly at idle. (Remember the Audi lawsuits over that?).

If the two sensors disagree, the ECM puts the truck into a mode with almost no power. The engine runs but won't rev up. (To protect soccer moms from driving through the back wall of the garage in case of a malfunction.) Great.

So they said I need a new throttle body sensor or two...and I said that wasn't even the damn problem I called them about, and gave them my laundry list of recent epic fails, all of which are electronic or electrical in nature.

The prognosis...not good.

The treatment decision.....hospice car care until maybe some dealer hopefully takes it off my hands. (I'm running out of room on my place for ultra-realistic car sculptures that don't move.)

What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1066 on: June 23, 2018, 11:38:41 AM »
I am attempting to sprout two mango seeds. It's working!!!

I cut the hard seed coats off with scissors, and soaked the seeds overnight in warm tap water. Then I wrapped them in moist paper towels and left them on the kitchen counter in an open zip-lock.

And today I checked 'em...they are both germinating. Life happens, at least for the moment. Now I get to see if I can plant them in small pots.

Fun. Think I'll go buy some more mangos, while BAU permits. Maybe I'll get my food forest going after all.

Eddie like mango.

I eat the fruit. The (future potential) trees are a bonus.

Like olives, keeping them alive here in winter is a bit of challenge, but doable (I hope). I have an olive tree I've had for a decade or so now. It's the fittest of  maybe 20 or so I started with. Only the strong survive, in my care..



What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Online RE

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1067 on: June 23, 2018, 11:53:34 AM »
Like olives, keeping them alive here in winter is a bit of challenge, but doable (I hope). I have an olive tree I've had for a decade or so now. It's the fittest of  maybe 20 or so I started with. Only the strong survive, in my care..

What kind of olives?  I like Kalamatta olives.

RE
SAVE AS MANY AS YOU CAN

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1068 on: June 23, 2018, 12:35:17 PM »
Damned if I can remember.

I think the one that still lives is one I bought from a guy who actually has a grove between here and SA. some CA rich guy who started a vineyard and olive grove with his  tech windfall and retired down here.

It's still in a big pot, and never has made fruit. But it has made a pretty nice bush and I was thinking about putting it in the dirt, now that I've been successful with a few of my figs ( I actually have figs now for the first time.)

Olives are a major pain in the ass to turn into food. They have to be soaked in strong base.
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline David B.

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1069 on: June 23, 2018, 01:06:47 PM »
Why not build them into a seasonal hoop house. Pull the plastic in spring. Just enough to regulate the lowest of the lows. I know some people who have mounted fig trees and lemon trees in containers built into skids and move them outdoors with a loader and forks each spring. I know nothing about olive trees but if it is like every other fruiting shrub if it is barely making it it won't put any energy into fruit.
If its important then try something, fail, disect, learn from it, try again, and again and again until it kills you or you succeed.

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1070 on: June 23, 2018, 06:02:06 PM »
That would work and I have the hoop house already, although it needs to be recovered. I even have good new plastic.

I've mostly fiddled with the trees at the place in town, though, after my debacle with a prior tree growing project I had going outdoors at the stead. I lost my drip irrigation during a long trip to Mexico and lost a a whole bunch of  trees I had in buckets at the stead.

I'd brought them back from Florida when Florida agriculture was in the toilet and trees were very cheap there after the 2008 crash. It gets so hot here. You have to really stay on top of watering trees, especially when they're small and in containers. At the house, if i forget, someone else might just water for me.

Of course, I don't travel as much now, and I'm out there every three days at least. The hoop house is a neglected project. I have other things I'd like to do in it too. Like get my aquaponics set-up up and running.

What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline David B.

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1071 on: June 23, 2018, 06:16:48 PM »
That would work and I have the hoop house already, although it needs to be recovered. I even have good new plastic.

I've mostly fiddled with the trees at the place in town, though, after my debacle with a prior tree growing project I had going outdoors at the stead. I lost my drip irrigation during a long trip to Mexico and lost a a whole bunch of  trees I had in buckets at the stead.

I'd brought them back from Florida when Florida agriculture was in the toilet and trees were very cheap there after the 2008 crash. It gets so hot here. You have to really stay on top of watering trees, especially when they're small and in containers. At the house, if i forget, someone else might just water for me.

Of course, I don't travel as much now, and I'm out there every three days at least. The hoop house is a neglected project. I have other things I'd like to do in it too. Like get my aquaponics set-up up and running.
you are getting past the point of needing a hired hand! too many projects as the sand of time flows. I'm having one of those days. Nothing is getting done and the property is a mess. Next week is the last school week then kids home everyday. There goes the spring productivity. Maybe this is the year they help more then they slow me down. I love the little beggars of course but I miss the intensity a kidless person can bring to things.
If its important then try something, fail, disect, learn from it, try again, and again and again until it kills you or you succeed.

Offline Palloy2

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1072 on: June 23, 2018, 06:26:05 PM »
If I remember rightly, mangoes have 4 plants (germ plasma) inside each seed.  When the seed germinates, the plants don't all germinate necessarily.  You should not rush to plant, so you can count the plantlets, then pinch off all but the strongest and then plant-out.  Keep the soil damp-looking all the time, with thick mulch to stop the drying out.  Don't start hydroponics till you can take care of it every day.
"The State is a body of armed men."

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1073 on: July 07, 2018, 04:20:40 AM »
When my wife, who was then my almost-ex girlfriend, moved to Austin the first time in 1980, the Frank Erwin Center,where the UT Longhorns play basketball, was less than 3 years old. It's a local landmark you'll still notice from I 35, a great big round drum of a coliseum that used to look out of place, but has somehow blended in over the years to look like it's supposed to be there. I guess we got used to it.

There is the requisite giant marquee you can read while driving by, that announces various big-name shows months in advance. It's still the biggest indoor venue in this city that has somehow managed to avoid accumulating any professional sports teams, perhaps because of UT.

They're tearing down the Erwin Center now, gonna build something else there and a new gym on another site. We went to a how there last night, Paul Simon's Farewell Tour.

The missus and I sat there in the mezzanine seats looking down from above one corner of the stage and tried to remember if we'd ever actually been to a music show there at all, ever.

She reminded me that we'd come there when our kids were young to see the Barnum and Bailey-Ringling Brother Circus, which doesn't exist anymore, either.

We came there for each of their high school graduations, I think. I'm a little hazy on my second daughter, who graduated a year ahead of her class in her haste to get to Colorado. I can't remember if she walked...but the other three did, and I showed up for all three. Nothing is more boring than a graduation ceremony for a large suburban high school, especially if your kids' names start with T.

 The Erwin Center is where a fairly large percentage of high school grads from Travis and Williamson counties walk
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1074 on: July 09, 2018, 05:56:23 PM »
Yesterday I finally cleaned out the old truck so I could get rid of it. It was a nasty job because I used the rear seat for a toolbox and the bed was full of fence building shit, and I hadn't cleaned the mess up in a year or two.

There were roughly a hundred empty feed sacks, which I should recycle but probably won't, because....because they're filthy and grimy and I want them gone. I was doing okay until i realized I had to clean out the glove box. It's been jammed shut for a couple of years. I crowbarred it and didn't do too much damage but now it won't latch. It could be fixed, but who the fuck cares.

Then I also remembered that's where the keys were supposed to be to the lock pin that holds my expensive-ass  double-ball trailer hitch on the receiver.

Except they weren't there, and I couldn't find them anywhere. They had a key like an old bike lock or a Harley ignition key. I found several of those lying around the house but none of them worked. Wrong key, or just corrosion? I don't know. Rust never sleeps.

When they sold me the hitch they told me to keep the keys in the glove box. I should have listened. Hell, I did listen. I swear I put them in the glovebox.....but they weren't there. So....Plan B....

Youtube.....three different videos on how to do it. Not sure why I even bought a lock in the first place. But nobody stole my hitch. Maybe it was a deterrent. But it never would have stopped a well equipped thief.

Torch. that works

Sawzall. Two minutes.

Sledgehammer and chisel. That's my style. Let's try that.

Worked for the guy in the video but not for me. Didn't do my screwdriver or chisel much good either. I think I bought a better lock than that guy. But hey, thanks for sharing. I always like things I can make better by swinging a hammer and smashing something. It was worth a try.

So....the torch is at the lake and I have a great little cordless sawzall but all the hot batteries and the charger are at the farm.

Fuck.

Has anyone else found themselves with a cordless tool in one place and the charger in another place?

I'm the only one?

Figures.

I stopped at Lowe's and bought a cheap (but nice) sawzall with a cord and a metal cutting blade after work. A little tricky keeping the saw steady, but.....two minutes. It's scrap metal now.

But I saved my nice hitch. But I need a new locking pin.

They have those at Lowe's.

Dammit! I was just AT Lowe's.
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the Solar McMansion
« Reply #1075 on: July 13, 2018, 03:31:59 PM »
I read somewhere once that the best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago.

Made me feel bad for not planting more trees.

I still haven't done that much, but today I'm sitting on my deck, eating figs from a tree planted by me, maybe five years ago. These are not the pioneer clones from the farm, but some I bought from Lowe's or somewhere in a moment of arborial motivation one spring.

I planted two fig trees side by side, and far too close together, but I think it'll work out okay. They both have good fruit this year for the first time, but one is ripening already and the other is not. I do remember they were different varieties, but I lost the name tags.  They finally look healthy and like they might survive if I didn't water them, although I'm not at all sure of that.

I have a whole handful of semi-ripe figs, which is my first real harvest.

Figs are a great fruit tree for here, and I have many good memories of various fig trees from my youth.

And even the giant fig that used to drop figs into the warm pool at Harbin. It's a silent meditation area, or was...... and the PLOP of a ripe fig into the water at the right time late in the evening would elicit nervous laughter from thirty or forty people likely to be soaking.

It is almost three full years since the fire. I think I might live to see the new Harbin, but it won't be the same. They aren't open yet, and they haven't let anybody in there except employees and contractors since it all burned to the ground. So much for my lifetime membership. 

All the trees at Harbin burned. Including those huge ancient walnuts and a whole laundry list of trees all over the huge ranches they were bequeathed.

The history of Harbin is absolutely fascinating. There are two books that chronicle the story, each a compliment of the other. There were other fires, long ago, but none as bad as this last one.

Are the springs of Harbin still flowing in my universe? I don't know. Communication is cut off. I think they, meaning the Harbin community, thought they'd be back before now, but it takes so much time now to plan and build anything. From what I can see from photos, it looks like it's being done with love and care and lots of money. Good. From time to time I check their site. If I miss the re-opening, please let me know.



Anyway, nothing tastes as sweet as good fruit from a tree you planted. My overwhelming sense, though, is not accomplishment, but gratitude. Thanks for the fish figs.

« Last Edit: July 13, 2018, 03:46:12 PM by Eddie »
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1076 on: July 13, 2018, 04:00:36 PM »
If that doesn't smoke Palloy out, nothing will.

It isn't solar yet. but I'm trying to put that vibe out there. Soon. I live in a house I love. I know that. It's wasteful. But I'm working on it.

Maybe the time to downsize is for the missus to do it when I slip on a banana peel and go on home to full self-realization Jesus.
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline Surly1

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Re: Meanwhile back at the Solar McMansion
« Reply #1077 on: July 13, 2018, 06:50:42 PM »
I read somewhere once that the best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago.

Made me feel bad for not planting more trees.

//
Anyway, nothing tastes as sweet as good fruit from a tree you planted. My overwhelming sense, though, is not accomplishment, but gratitude. Thanks for the fish figs.

This is a really fine observation. I appreciate your appreciation.
"It is difficult to write a paradiso when all the superficial indications are that you ought to write an apocalypse." -Ezra Pound

Online Eddie

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1078 on: September 09, 2018, 12:17:28 PM »
So...Roamer didn't come down, because a deeper look into the relevant body of laws and regulations revealed that it's easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a Texas born pig to legally emigrate to Wisconsin.

Commercial swine entering Wisconsin from a farm or home must have the following:

Certificate of veterinary inspection (CVI) with the complete physical origin and physical destination address and the following information:

Official identification (one of the following):

USDA ear tag number – number must begin with a state 2-digit code followed by 2 or 3 letters and 4 numbers

USDA “840” ear tag number

Ear notch (if the pig is a purebred and the ear notch is registered)

A tattoo or an ear tag with the premises identification number and a unique identifier (a tag without the premises ID number is not sufficient)

A microchip for swine kept as pets

Breed association tattoo​

Feeder swine:

If the animals are 80 pounds or less, individual ID is not required but the premises identification number or state-issued code of the premises of origin must be on the animals (ear tag or tattoo).

If the animals are more than 80 pounds, each animal must have official individual ID as noted above

Testing for Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) and Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv) as follows:

Negative tests of herd of origin within 90 days prior to import – no import permit required.  For both PRRS and PEDv, include the test type, date and results on CVI.

Statement on the CVI that there are no clinical signs of PRRS and PEDv at the time of inspection.

Import permit required for swine that originate from a herd that tested positive for PRRS or PEDv or that was not tested within 90 days prior to import.

If no testing was done, include a statement indicating no testing was done.
If the tests were positive, include the test type, date, and results on the CVI.

See resources on the right for information on quarantines, testing, and herd plans after import.


I booked a short day tomorrow so I could catch some pigs today and get some to the sale tomorrow to be sold on Tuesday. But it's been raining all week and the pasture is pretty wet and the pig enclosure is a sea of mud.

It's actually been the kind of week that could signal a break in the ongoing drought conditions, so I'm not bitching about the rain.

But it sure makes me not want to go out there today to try to get them in the trailer. It'll be a nasty mess. Yechh.
What makes the desert beautiful is that somewhere it hides a well.

Offline azozeo

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Re: Meanwhile back at the 'stead
« Reply #1079 on: September 09, 2018, 01:12:40 PM »
You have my sympathy  :emthup:
I know exactly what you mean. Let me tell you why you’re here. You’re here because you know something. What you know you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world.
You don’t know what it is but its there, like a splinter in your mind

 

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