How much of our lives are wasted on scrolling through meaningless bullcrap on the internet?

How much of our lives are wasted on scrolling through meaningless bullcrap on the internet?

That is the question that I have been wanting to ask for a long time.  Unfortunately, I felt that I had to cut way back on my Facebook time before I could ask it without being a hypocrite.  Why do we even know or care who Kim Kardashian is?  Why is Miley Cyrus not broke and living out of a dumpster?

Why do we pay no-value celebrities any attention at all?  Even better, why do we worship them?

Imagine if you had all the time back that you spent scrolling through your Facebook feed.  Imagine if you spent that time with the ones whom you love…without a screen between you.

To Hell and Back

I have a device which I have cherished for many years.  It took the place of a huge notebook of compact discs and allowed me to effortlessly tote my entire music collection around the United States and overseas.  Unfortunately, my great companion came with a hard drive that started clicking over a year ago and started having to be restored, as of last week.

Since my iPod Classic had seen me on so many journeys and kept me company through countless hours using various mowers and other power equipment, I decided to rescue my buddy from the afterlife.  I found a guy in the United Kingdom that makes an adapter that one can use to remove the hard from an iPod Classic and replace it with an SD Card.

IMAG0979-1Making an omelet means breaking a few eggs.

IMAG0980-1Putting Humpty Dumpty together again.

IMAG0981My old friend back inside his iFrogz case.  Safe and sound.

So, nothing comes without a downside in reviving old tech.  This model only supports 128 gigabytes with the SD conversion, so I gave up 32 gigabytes of storage.  The upside is that there are now no moving parts inside the iPod and it should last me for a very long time.  Long enough for my kids to call it my antique music player.  I like to think of it like my Walkman from the early 2000’s.

Incidentally, the real upside is that now that I know I can successfully pull off this upgrade, I will be able to convert my last generation iPod Classic to SD.  The good news there?  Those can recognize  up to a Terabyte of SD memory.  Everything the iPod was meant to be and nothing that it wasn’t.

All week long, I’ve been missing this place.

I miss having my favorite place to eat.  I miss the food.  I miss the people.  I miss Jenny and her unique brand of service.  I miss Stephen playing with my daughter on breaks from the kitchen.  I miss Tom’s food.  I miss hanging out there with my friends.

I want a Diablo with wedges and a ginger tea.  I want fried pickles and about a gallon of Tom’s homemade ranch dressing.  I want a buffalo chicken sandwich with fries.  I want Burgermeister’s.

IMAG0086

Seriously?!

I would like to give you folks a little barometer on where our society is, as a whole.  We have a mobile home for rent, so I am fielding calls from potential tenants.  Here’s part of the last call:

Lady Caller: Do you rent to sex offenders?

Me: Ma’am, this home is within seventy-five feet of elementary school property.  North Carolina law states that a registered sex offender can not live within one thousand feet of school property.

Lady Caller: So you don’t rent to sex offenders?

Me: Ma’am, state law prohibits sex offender residence within one thousand feet of school property.  Seventy-five percent of our properties fall within that parameter.

Lady Caller: Yeah, but is that the only reason you don’t rent to sex offenders?

Me: Ma’am state law is what it is…I don’t have to go beyond that.

Lady Caller: (Hangs up)

That, folks, is the bait and switch that every landlord and/or law enforcement officer must deal with on a daily basis.  A person fishing for the basis for a discrimination suit while I’m trying the protect the interests of the community.

There are so many kids in our biggest mobile home park that it empties a bus when they drop-off in the afternoon.  Would you put a sex offender in the middle of a community like that?  I bet your answer is no.  However, if you were to flatly state that you don’t rent to sex offenders, then you would find yourself open to a lawsuit.

This is the tightrope that we have to walk.  The fine line that exists between protecting the community and getting sued.  Fun stuff.

Public Service Announcement (If you don’t ever use power equipment, skip this one)

Sometimes I get busy and don’t catch problems until they cost me money.  Recently, I’ve been noticing problems with some of my power equipment.  I was immediately suspicious because all of my small engine equipment is Stihl (and not Stihl purchased at a big box store, Stihl purchased from a commercial Stihl dealer).

All of my equipment went from starting on the second or third pull to starting after a lot of work, if at all.  My string trimmer was the worst, so I took it in and after two trips to the shop, replaced the carburetor.  After that, the problem was solved.  The culprit…ethanol blended fuel.

As it turns out, ethanol blended fuel is devastating for power equipment.  This is especially true for two-cycle engines.  If you use ethanol blended fuel, you can expect to keep replacing your carburetor on a regular basis (which isn’t cheap).  Consumer Reports started documenting the issue about three years ago.  You can find their first article on the issue here.  Now, every major small engine producer has some sort of warning on their products or website.  This is great for consumers purchasing new equipment but not so great for those of us with older gear, as we have missed out on the warnings.

Fortunately, their is an easy (although somewhat inconvenient) solution.  You have to find gas stations that still sell pure gasoline, without any ethanol.  They are getting pretty scarce, but you can find them by visiting this website. It may mean some extra driving, but at least your power equipment will still work.

Why is this even an issue?  Well…I don’t want to get into another political discussion, so we’ll leave it at just another example of your government at work.  You can find the complete history of the issue here.  Pay particular attention to 2003 to 2009…yep, this issue spans several presidential administrations, making it a “big government” problem.