Saturday, February 13, 2016

Status Updates

Not much is happening in Ye Olde Pueblo.  I do have some status that I want to remember (which is why I blog).

The Gym.  It's working out pretty well.  We're going 5 times a week.  We gave up on the recumbent bikes and are now using the spin bikes.  MUCH better workout.  The downside is that the spin room is not ventilated when classes are not in session.  Maybe in a couple of months I could make it through a class, not yet, though.  Yesterday we did an abdominals workout with the trainer, today I can not take a deep breath.  So that's good.

Farmer's Market.  We think the farmer's market eggs are better than the factory eggs.  The tomato was not any tastier than the hot house tomatoes at Safeway.  The chicken was a definite fail.  We don't roast meat in the convection oven, it tends to dry out.  So whole chickens are spatchcocked and cooked on the grill.  I guess free range chickens have more bone density, because getting the backbone out of the bird was very difficult, as was flattening it.  The final product was very chewy.  It was not a happy experience for dinner, so I doubt that we'll buy anymore of those chickens.

The ice maker.  I realize nobody cares about this, but I'm keeping track of what it's doing.  It's doing this overnight.

Bertha, aka the tunnel boring machine in Seattle.  Still not moving.  My last update on her lack of progress can be found here.

Jim.  Progress is slow, we've passed three months.  Hopefully the six month estimate on time to heal is accurate, which puts us at the half way point.  The scar scraping has turned out to be incredibly beneficial.  If you find yourself with a new large scar, be sure to ask about it.  Scar size is decreased, and local skin and muscle movement has been improved.

Verizon.  A new subject, but news you can use. They've changed two things that I am now aware of.   1):  If you decrease the amount of data you want to use, the change will not become effective until the first day of the next billing cycle.  They used to make the change immediately and prorate the charges, but they don't do that anymore.  One wonders if you have to wait for the next billing cycle to spend more money with them. 2):   It used to be that one could suspend the Jetpack (or whatever mifi) for two 90 day periods.  No more!  You get one 90 day period.  After that, you may suspend with billing, but why would we suspend something and then pay for it anyway? What you can do, if you're not going to use it for a long time is cancel the line.  There is a $20 reconnect fee, so do the math and see if a disconnect works for you. None of these changes are communicated to the customer until after the fact. (Update to post on 5/10/16:  I called to get a new line today.  The reconnect fee is actually $40.  I pitched a fit and they waived the fee.  Complaining works.)

And now for some new news about local decisions.  Campbell Avenue is a very busy road.  It's lined by many restaurants and small business.  There are two lanes in each direction with a center turn lane.  In its infinite wisdom, Tucson has decided to spend $670,000 dollars on a beautification project that puts landscaped medians in the turn lane.  One wonders why.  So now, when a car wants to turn left, they get in front of the median.  Other cars wanting to make the same turn end up stopping in the left most lane of travel.  The people trapped behind them then make ill-advised lunges into the right most lane of travel, causing accidents.   The Blue Willow, a very popular restaurant, has lost tens of thousands of dollars in business and has had to lay people off because their patrons could not get into the parking lot for weeks during this project.  So much for a pro-business environment.  I don't find this median nearly as attractive as a clear turn lane. 

 That's it, that's what's happening here in the desert south west.  It's going to be 84 today, no Polar Vortex for us.


  1. Like you, I've just discovered this change by Verizon. I'm advised that pay as you go, but keeping the same numbers, is an alternative option. I don't know exactly how this works, so will look into that when we get back to the US later this year. In the meantime I'm stuck with paying for a service I'm not using. To say that I'm extremely annoyed would be a classic English understatement!

  2. Jim doesn't need any more reasons to hate Verizon! They just keep getting better and better, don't they?
    Glad to hear Jim's ankle is improving. What a long haul.

  3. This "spatchcock" process...(interesting word)...if you don't use your convection oven, then how do you bake it? Do you also have a conventional oven? (I have oven envy!)

    1. We don't have a regular oven anymore. Many Class A's do not, and we are consigned to the convection microwave only. It's not a very good alternative to the propane oven. The chickens go on the Weber grill, which is why it's good to flatten them out some.

  4. Thanks for the info on Verizon Mifi. Since we are new customers, this is good to know in case we need to suspend or disconnect our service at some point.