26 November 2014

Morning Brew

The other day the wife stated that it took 3 months to build a habit.
It got me to thinking,
which in this case didn't take much.
Less than 3 months ago 
I wrote about a percolator and a newfound interest in tea.
Remember it started with this Kings 403,
way to expensive to just drink away,
especially on a cup or three a day habit.
Since then I've gone hog wild,
experimenting with little packages of imported Chinese tea.
Neighbors are probably curious.
Jake said not to drive around with this stuff,
it looked like the bad teachers warned about.
You'd wonder how many variations could there be,
and so did I.
Bottom left-jasmine pearl
Top right-oolong/ginseng mix
Bottom right-no translation
Top left-Iron Goddess of Mercy-my #2
The other jars are different variations of oolong or green.
My #1 is this Red Robe oolong tea.
It's like the magic wake up leaf.
There's a decent caffeine bite to it.
That's why there's a #2,
I had to tone down on this blacker goodness.
Really together with oatmeal,
it's the excuse to get refined sugar into my body.
I've tried honey and agave,
beer or cane sugar wins.
I've ditched the percolator.
Actually it was shanghaied by my coffee-loving wife.
She loves it other than the repetitive cleaning.
No better way to make a real cup of coffee,
squeezing any java juice out of the bean the more it boils,
like a quadruple brew.
Her wake-up routine is picking grinds out of her braces.
I've gone the simple route.
A pinch of green and white,
boil some water and voila.
The water unfurls these huge tea leaves.
Yeah each little ball is one big leaf!
Which are too big to get stuck in my teeth.
Occasionally one will slip in,
and it's easy to chew it and spit it out.
Typical store bought tea bags are old overdried compost,
which need to be filtered by the paper.
Nighttime is good for this less caffeinated jasmine tea.
It's hard to stop drinking it,
but there's no daily jones like the morning brew.
More tools of the trade.
Together with those saucepans,
these are my go to cups.
Each one has it's own history.
Holey chit I am an addict.

25 November 2014

Holdsworth - busted!!

There are a couple things I'm good at,
collecting a bunch of cool junk,
and building things I can't afford to keep.
It's like running over the fire pit to get the current holey grail,
then realizing your standing there with burnt clothes,
naked with the holey grail.
The chit hit the fan over the weekend,
when that realization really bit me in the arse.
You may remember the 1949 Holdsworth frame was one step from the scrap pile.
My build thoughts were to rat rod it out,
oil up the rust and throw scratched up era parts on it.
Out came the wd-40 and sandpaper
and the little Dremel tool wire wheel.
Wow this cleaned up quick!
The early lugs were plain bitchin.
Here's where I should have clear-coated it,
instead out came the rattlecan.
Light coats of red oxide, black and clear to mimic an early paint job,
followed by a scratch with 000 steel wool,
and a hand massage with rubbing compound.
I figured it could always be media-blasted  in the future,
but why risk hurting the thin Reynolds 531tubing.
I even found repop HOLDSWORTH decals.
So cool,
exactly how I had envisioned.
The original chromed forks and the AVA stem polished up well.
I had dove down the rabbit hole,
a head first swan dive.
8.3  8.6  8.4
Hell I even tried to gold stripe the dropouts!
Most of this was done during the odd dusk hours.
During the night I was a cellphone monster,
researching unaffordable 50's road bike components,
and scouring eBay for the right parts.
The 70's stuff a bit more in my make believe budget.
As I expected,
the cost of scratched campagnolo equipment is a fraction of NOS.
I thought I had a handle on the situation...
Until I started on flip mode,
finding stuff to trade into bike parts,
anything to feed the paypal machine.
The little parts added up quick,
however the prize my eyes were glued on were these wheels.
Second rated Gran Sport hubs,
these had that early high flange look with the round holes.
Top rated nuovo record has oval holes.
These would make the bike.
I bid,
and overbid,
and won.
It felt like I was gambling.
If you start with $50,
win $300,
then lose it all...
Did you just lose $50 or $300?
I couldn't wait to spin these!
That's when I got busted.
A misrepresentation in the deal had me asking questions,
innocently asking my wife for a suggestion,
and WHABAMP!!!
All hell let loose - Holey Chit!
Run for cover!!
"How could you be spending this much on %#*£&@!!"
"But...but...I was trading junk on our wall..."
"You have so much stuff!!"
I slept on the couch that night.
How can I complain,
my addiction got the best of me,
and it was marginally out of control.
That's how these projects get done!
The whaler, the hot rods, the stereos...
it's all flip and return.
But..who else would let me keep bike projects in the kitchen...
Here's to wives that keep us in check!

23 November 2014

😍Macey's 8th Birthday😍!!

I'm a lagger yeah,
but this post isn't about me...
We'll just call this Macey's Birth-Weekend,
one perk of having a Friday birthday.
Can't believe it's been 8 years,
since you know it,
she was cut from her mothers belly...
Happy Birth-Weekend to our youngest!

18 November 2014

Rat Bauer - series finale

One thing that'll get me to typing is an exciting sequel,
in this case it's the series finale.
During one early morning blog entry,
I was visited by our old frenemy,
we had nicknamed him Rat Bauer.


As a baby he had escaped from a seemingly impossible situation.
I didn't have the cold heart to put him down,
and we've been paying the consequences ever since.
We've seen this a million times in movies,
instead of the quick kill,
characters would rather explain plans to their nemesis,
toying with their mind,
allowing time for escape.
He was cute...
Months later we'd wake up to a gnawing or scratching underneath the house.
After that he gained access inside the walls.
It was like clockwork before dawn,
as he expanded his real life habitrail.
I set up traps all over the place.
During a quiet couple weeks,
we figured he had been snagged by a cat,
or maybe a neighbors poison.
We all slept better.
Then one early evening the wife heard a rustling in the hot oven.
He scurried out from the back into an open zone.
We thought we had him cornered,
and like the great Jack Bauer of 24 fame,
he vanished.
I studied up,
and found that rats are very habitual,
using the same trails,
relying on a nest for security,
and living within a relatively small territory.
They don't like change.
Big traps were set up more strategically,
using junk to funnel him into the danger zone.
Well after a week of absence,
he came back in a weird place,
the boys room.
One night Jaxon thought he saw him,
and swore he ran into the closet.
Yeah right.
Way too many hiding spots in there to pursue.
A trap was set at the door.
A day passed...
Then 2am...snap!
A melancholy moment,
who is Batman without the Joker,
or the Coyote without the Roadrunner!?
A worthy opponent...
RIP Rat Bauer.

09 November 2014

Cowboys & Indians

What better way to perpetuate history to youngsters then with toys.
I usually pass on dolls,
but these guys made me double back.
Maybe it was the original box.
Super complete for a 1967-ish shoot-em-up.
So the story goes that Hasbro cornered the market with Barbie and GI Joe about 1964.
This company Marx decided to take a stand,
and came up with the cowboys and Indians,
Johnny West, Geronimo and friends.
This was the time when Indians were still the bad guys.
Try that now!

07 November 2014

Lite Brite

Last weeks jaunt in the little whaler 
made it obvious our lighting system needed refinement.
Coming in using our emergency cellphone flashlight was a bit ridiculous.
It seemed like the little closed cell battery
should have lasted much longer than a short couple hours.
Sure I should and could have charged it,
but that would have been too easy.
I was expecting this to be maintenance free.
There are a couple wires that could possibly be charging wires in the outboard,
but since it's a pull start only,
there's no rectifier,
which converts AC to DC.
I'll have to test this when running.
My solution for now were these trick LED bulbs.
Rather difficult to find,
they finally arrived in the mail last night.
This style was packages specific to a boat light,
although it's a typical auto style bulb.
Here's a before and after.
The top shot is the 12 watt incandescent,
a warm yellow burn.
The bottom shot is the new .85 watt LED,
a cold blueish tone about 3/4 the bright level.
Since amp=watt/volt,
than the original 2 bulbs at 12/3.3 watts took 1.275 amps,
and the new LED's at 1.7 watts total only take .14 amps to shine.
Theoretically it'll take 9 times longer to kill that little battery!
Updates soon.