Posted By Ed B

I have an older laptop, about 6 years old, running XP Pro.

I run Microsoft Security Essentials on it for virus protection,
(AVG has just gotten too bloated and slow).
I use it mostly to blog and surf, but there are days that I fear for it's safety.
It slows down so much that I'm ready to throw it across the room.
I've tried Firefox, Chrome, PaleMoon, and a number of other browsers,
but it's the underlying operating system.

So last weekend I broke down and set up a partition for Ubuntu, a flavor of Linux.
Do I like it?

If I didn't use this laptop for programming equipment sometimes,
using software that would only run under Windoze,
I'd reformat the whole thing and run only Ubuntu on it.

It is fast.

It picked up all my hardware.

It has so much software that comes with the install, it surprised me.

No goofy command line like earlier versions of Linux that I tried, but didn't have the time to learn.

It even came with a remote viewing package (a VNC app) that is better than the one I downloaded before I realized it had one.

It didn't work so great at first, I'll admit, but that was because I didn't set it up with an internet connection during the install.
The second time, I did, and it downloaded all the updates it needed.
That made all the difference in the world.

I posted this using Firefox in Ubuntu.

What a pleasure.

Posted By Ed B

Thanks Mr. President3.99 Today.

His Secretary of Energy said that gas should hit $5.

Almost there!


Posted By Ed B

I went to see this movie tonight with friends.

We were among the few white people in the audience.

It started out with some weak opening credits and music that made me worry about my choice for our viewing experience.

I've read that it was predictable.

I kinda thought we were going to win the war.

That they'd experience racism.

That someone would die.


The audience applauded. We joined in.


Posted By Ed B

When I blog, I like to craft a pithy, concise tableau of words

I want to provide a springboard for a discussion of some of the issues of the day.
Or point out an interesting mental connection I haven't heard somewhere else (or that I stole).
If you wanted to hear more of my personal life, you'd look me up on Facebook.
Not that I post much there either, as I just don't have that much drama going on in my life these days.

There are two major dramatic themes in my life these days, my employment and my wife's health.

On employment, I've always, and I mean always, relied on my God given talent that I would find employment when necessary, and until the meltdown, that was true.
And during the meltdown, I felt safe until I saw the decent management move on, leaving me exposed to the machinations of a couple of managers who were having an affair.
One of them was my boss, the other was the QC mgr.
They were both married (and not to each other).
I went into the plant after hours one night and caught them alone together.
I couldn't care less (except for a general concern for their moral well-being and that of their spouses), but my boss was an ineffective joke, and a large part of that was his poor attention to his job and his excessive attention to her.
Many found it comical (especially when his wife came in looking for "that whore").
I complained to the plant manager frequently that I wasn't getting support from the maintenance department because our boss wouldn't schedule them to support me, which would result in my being alone in the plant at night, programming robots and machines, drilling and mounting fixtures, all for a product launch the next day.
Why would I do that?
Because if I didn't, it wouldn't get done.
If it didn't get done, we'd lose the work.
And I'd lose an employer.
So I'd complain to the plant manager and it would get better, for a couple days.
And I had people at corporate tell me I was indispensable.

Then it came time for a short layoff of a couple weeks because I got caught up on my work load and everyone else had been seeing rotating layoffs.
I was looking forward to the two weeks off after months of 70 hour weeks.

While I was laid off, however, the plant manager and the human resources manager both left the company, and the QC manager was made interim plant manager.
And I was notified that I would see my layoff extended.
After four months and my being hired on elsewhere, I was given a severance package.
I said all this to say that since then, I've yet to feel comfortable about my employment.
Until now.
Yesterday, the plant manager and the engineering manager where I currently work both expressed their appreciation of what I've done and am doing for the company.

As for my wife, we've been praying that she would get in to the U of M Neurology Clinic for testing prior to her appointment next year.
Besides wanting quicker relief, this would also help us financially with insurance costs.
We got a call last week, she was seen a couple days ago and just before Thanksgiving she will move in to a room there for up to a week, while wired to some diagnostic equipment that will pinpoint the precise location of the source of her seizures when she has one for them.
They will then have a better idea of how to proceed with treatment.

As for political commentary.
I am overwhelmed by the stupidity of the American Voter and fear greatly for this country.
Everyone agrees they have the right to vote.

Few agree they have the responsibility to research the issues, other than listening to  the proclamations of the president as he offers them the free lunch.

And if you're not listening to Bill Whittle on Afterburner, you're missing one of the sharpest essayists this country has ever produced.

Posted By Ed B

Last September I wrote:

Last Sunday, I asked a guy from church to go out on the Detroit River with me after church. He's the father of a friend of ours, and Scherie was unable to go.

We drove towards the river, about a half hour away. We were about a mile away from Elizabeth Park, stopped at a light when we got hit from behind.
The lady behind us was stopped, but she got rammed into us by the guy behind her! My skeg had sliced into her bumper!

New prop bent. Boat on trailer crooked. Transom bent. Motor transom support bent.

We went out anyway. Had a good time. Scary at one point when the hull started vibrating. Turned out that with the transom bent a little, the motor could be trimmed (and was) to a position where it was in contact with the hull. Trimmed up, noise gone. Went around Grosse Isle, over to Canada and around Bois Blanc (Bob-Lo).  Came back, pulled the boat out of the water and realized that the trailer was bent and twisted as the boat wouldn't sit on it straight.
Saturday, after doing a brake job for my neighbor, Mike, I Jacked the boat up and rolled the trailer out from under it. Sounds easy, doesn't it?
Mike, a retired millwright, marvelled at it. I was amazed I did it. Reminded me of the Egyptians and the pyramids (If indeed the ... oh never mind).
There were a few snapped members. We welded, torched and bent the frame back to a semblance of normalcy at my good friend Eugene's shop Saturday night.

I'm sure you all remember this, but I thought I'd refresh your memory, as I'm about to update you.
(Granted it's been longer than it takes Freddy to tell a story).

Since then, I've taken the axle off of the trailer and cut and welded it so that the trailer sits 5 inches lower to the ground. This allows me to get it into the garage, and when I launch it the boat comes off the trailer closer to the shore instead of past the dock where the wind and current catches it and blows it around the dock and I have to ... never mind.
I had removed he motor and backed the boat up to a tree and with a comealong I pulled the transom pretty straight. I attached a plate of aluminum across the transom.
I rehung the motor. Thank you Jesus that I didn't drop it, it's huge and heavy!

Eugene had welded the cracks in the aluminum brace that supports the transom to the inside of the boat after I had removed it.
Where the brace had been attached with rivets that I had drilled out, I reattached with stainless pan head screws. Mike across the street helped me reinstall them last Saturday.
My brother called while we were working and asked if I needed help. I said I thought we had it. We did.
I then washed the boat thoroughly.
When I was done, my brother drove up, thinking he'd come help anyway.
Scherie had a seizure that morning, so she had a headache. She would have gone out with me on the boat because she's that sweet, but with Tom there, she didn't have to.
Tom and I took it out on the lake, and we both had a blast.
I had hammered the prop blade into shape and was curious as to how it would be. Perfect!
The boat had been our dad's and I think the last time we had been out together on it was with him.

If you're ever in the area, stop by. We'll go out.



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Ed B
Ypsilanti, MI


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