Yay! It's A Blog! 2006-2010 - December 2009 Archives

New Austin law prohibits texting while driving and more

December 23, 2009

Austin City Council passed an expanded version of a ban on texting while driving. I'm all for it. They expanded it to include doing anything with your phone besides talking. I'm all for that, too, except I don't see why people need to talk on their phones while driving either.

I don't use my phone in the car, so that part won't affect me. I do use my iPod, though, and even though the ban doesn't include iPods, a cop won't know whether I'm fooling with a phone or an iPod before he pulls me over. I don't want to get pulled over, so I can't be switching from music to podcast on my iPod while driving in Austin anymore. It should be noted, the ban doesn't include time sitting at a stop light, so there will be plenty of opportunities for me to goof around with it in between the mobile segments of an in-town trip.

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Not selling CDs

December 6, 2009

I've been feeling like removing another layer of clutter around the house. I gathered up 39 of my CDs that I thought I could let go, and went to Secondspin.com to see how much they would pay. Most of them were 10 cents. I'd rather throw the CDs away than sell them for 10 cents, especially when I have to mail them in and pay postage. Ten of them were worth around $2.00. So just for those after postage, I'd get about $16. Doesn't feel worth it.

I've never been big on doing a lot of work to get rid of stuff. I just want it gone. Maybe I'll take them to Goodwill and write them off as a charitable contribution. How much would you value them for charitable purposes? $1 apiece?

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UT, Lowes and Christmas

December 5, 2009

  • I worked myself into a frenzy over the UT/Nebraska game. I've been feeling beat up on with home/car repairs, vet bills and office politics. I had it in my head that if UT didn't answer Nebraska's go-ahead field goal at the end, then fate or the gods or whatever really did have it against me. It came down to the very last second. I'm glad they won (duh). Games like that are very hard to watch, and I'm not sure I'm glad I watched it even with the win at the end.
  • I went to Lowes twice today to return plumbing supplies I bought a couple days ago. I also bought some leaf bags. My front yard and driveway are covered.
  • I got some Christmas shopping done. Still more to go, and I hope I get it done early. The hard part is figuring out what to get for people.

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Disgusted with Poor Design

December 5, 2009

The first time I had to change the light bulb in a ceiling fan that came with my house, I was thoroughly disgusted. It's designed such that you have to disassemble the entire light kit to get to the bulb. No easy access. I couldn't figure it out, so I had to go to Lowes and ask one of the people there. He had to climb a ladder and look at it and finally determined the bit about disassembling it. I wrote up a procedure and have gotten several e-mails from people thanking me because they couldn't figure it out, either.

My bathroom faucet.Now the same has happened with my bathroom faucet. One of the supply lines sprung a leak, and I can't figure out how to replace it. Internet research only makes me more frustrated. So this morning, I went to Lowes and studied their display model. It looks like the supply lines are permanently attached to the faucet. The line springs a leak, you have to buy a new faucet. Usually a new line costs about $5, while a new faucet can be 30 times that.

The Lowes guy suggested I contact the manufacturer, so I went to their Web site. It said they were available for calls 7 days a week between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. eastern time. So I called at noon eastern time. The recording said they are only open Monday - Friday.

I'll send them an e-mail, but I'm disgusted with the inaccurate information on their Web site and more disgusted with the design of their product. Seriously... when designers design things, they should make maintenance and repair methods obvious. And if I have to purchase a whole new faucet because a $5 part on it is broken, you can bet I'm going to go with a different manufacturer.

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Christmas, Leaks and Football

December 4, 2009

  • I put up Christmas decorations tonight while listening to Christmas music. I'm in the spirit.
  • I discovered a massive leak under my kitchen sink yesterday morning. I called Clarke Kent plumbing, and they were able to send someone out the same day. I was very impressed with Roger, the plumber. I hope I don't have a need to call them again, but if I spring another leak, I will definitely call them.
  • It snowed today a teeny, tiny, itty, bitty bit.
  • The kitchen leak was the result of shoddy plumbing work by the previous owners of the house. I'm surprised it lasted as long as it did. The pipes were ill-fitted after the sink was replaced with a deeper sink. Roger had to rearrange and replace everything under there.
  • I put Christmas lights on one of my fake ficus trees. I might leave them up year-round.
  • I've had a lot of repair/fix-it stuff done lately. I've had to replace a tire on my car, replace a wheel on my hvac unit, have a tree removed and other trees pruned, and plumbing work. I hope things settle down in that department.
  • Big XII Championship game tomorrow evening. Hook 'em Horns!!

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