Hello dear reader(s)!

As far as the Pagan Sabbats are concerned, Lughnasadh or Lammas to me is “Meh”.  Don’t get me wrong, I will still do a couple of things in order to celebrate it, but all the Sabbats for me are times to connect with nature or observe the changing of the seasons and to me, Litha and Lughnasadh feel roughly the same.  They’re both hot as fuck and around times where being outside for any major length of time will result in skin cancer or heat stroke.

It is the first of the harvest festivals, so fruit and grain are big on this day.  My love is baking some braided bread that looks amazing.  It is rising right now, but I am sure it will smell and taste even better.  I am looking forward to that.

This evening, when the sun goes down, I will try to get outside.

I belong to a local group that celebrates the Sabbats and they are having a celebration this evening, but I am pretty certain I will not be able to attend due to extreme gastrointestinal issues which will make me want to stay close to home wherein lies my magical porcelain throne which the seven kingdoms do not fight over.

I will feast tonight, because my love is an awesome cook.  Maybe I will light a fire in the evening (as this is a fire festival) or burn an effigy to release the negativity we carry.  Incense and candles will be burned (of course), and good times will be had.

But I am still kinda “Meh” on this one.  One of the problems with a nature-centric belief system is that sometimes, nature sucks.  You understand the necessity of it.  You are thankful for what is provided by it, but you don’t want to go outside and play in it.

“That’s great that the love between the Goddess and the God burned so hot it literally consumed him, but could they not get their passionate heat all over the rest of us?  I don’t want to be consumed too!”

If you want to get really technical, this celebration should have happened yesterday after sunset since that is when the day began for the Celtic pagans, but fuck technicalities.  I do what I want.  Besides, if you get in to those kind of technicalities, you probably actually want to celebrate on the closest full moon.  My path allows me to mark days on a regular calendar, thank you very much.

Perhaps if my stomach feels any better later, I will let my Goddess consume me, if y’all know what I’m sayin’.   😉

Happy Lughnasadh, everyone!  May it be more than “Meh” for you!







Hello dear reader(s)!

Okay, sub-zero is only with the windchill.  A snowy blast hit the area last night, making for snowy, blasty conditions like that of a blast of snowy, blasty snow.  The ice-covered roads have a top coating of blasty snow that blasted onto them after the freeze of blasty weather last night.  The Department of Transportation has told residents to avoid travel today, due to the snowy, blasty conditions.

And my fucking heater is barely working.  It is cold in here.  Not the kind of cold that makes it comfortable to sleep wrapped up in blankets, but the kind of cold that makes you worried about frostbite on any skin that is exposed.  The cats glommed onto me so tightly for warmth, and the cold made my neuropathy unbearable.  All of my joints hurt, and I have a headache from the poor sleep.

I had an offer to spend the day in a nice, warm house, but I had to refuse because the asshats that are the maintenance and HVAC people for the property management company are going to be coming out during my roommate’s doctor appointment to go up and get the heater barely limping again for another day or so before it quits, and coming up with excuses of why they can’t actually fix it so it works like one should.  So I need to be here for that.

For the first few visits, they thought the only access point to the heater (which is up in the attic crawl space to make it as inefficient as possible) was through a hatch in the closet of my tiny-ass room.  This meant that I had to take everything out of my closet (which is overfull as it is), every time they came over to look at it.  That happened a lot.  Soon, they found that there is an access point through the ceiling in my roommate’s bedroom (that is easier to fit through), so at least that is no longer a problem.

However, this will be about the 9th time they have been here to look at this piece of shit since we moved in.  That was in October.  We didn’t even turn on the heat until mid-November.

When you add in the broken kitchen faucet, the leak in the bathroom sink, the leak in the kitchen sink, and the sewer clean out, we have had someone in here to mickey mouse patch things more often than I had the last woman I was seeing over.  They should be paying rent.  I am fucking sick of it.

I have to wonder if my thoughts of the area have been tainted by my experiences in this house.  I am tired of it, and I want to leave.

The thought of prepaying a year lease somewhere since I have don’t have good credit is increasingly seeming like a good idea, even though I do not want to waste any money I have saved to possibly, one day not have to worry about horrible slumlords any longer.

But, you should never go to the store hungry, and you should never make a huge financial decision in a blind rage.

On the plus side, I have a new warmth in my soul that is helping to keep me from making terroristic threats at the property managers, so, at least I’m not looking at jail time.

Featured Image from





TRYING to Make It Through

Hello dear reader(s)!

Last night I did some online research into my fridge after determining that the duct between the fridge and freezer likely wasn’t blocked by ice.  Everything pointed me in the direction of a bad thermistor, which is essentially a sensor and thermostat in one.  The good news:  The part is relatively inexpensive and shouldn’t take too long to replace.  The bad news:  It is the 4th of July weekend and the only local place that carries it is closed until Monday.

Just to make sure that was indeed the issue, my dad and I moved and unplugged the refrigerator and started taking off panels, controls, and wiring harnesses to get to wear the thermistor was located.  As we removed the diffuser, my dad noticed that a tiny little plastic piece near inaccessible inside a groove in the styrofoam had broken away from an arm that opens and shuts the doors inside the diffuser assembly.  It appears as though the thermistor was not in fact the problem, but the break in the arm was holding the doors shut; thus allowing for little air-flow between the freezer and refrigerator, causing the warm temperatures.

Imprinted on the foam was a part number that I recognized as a part number due to its similarity with the part number I had previously looked up for the thermistor.  So I went to check the refrigerator’s website to ensure that it was indeed the part number for the entire assembly that I was looking for.  I typed the part number in and hit “Search” and 0 results were found.

I typed Whirlpool diffuser followed by the part number into Google and found that the only listings for said part were on eBay.  Um…no.  I looked up the local appliance parts store that is closed until Monday due to the holiday and found that they also had no listings for the diffuser assembly.

As a last-ditch effort I took the model number of the refrigerator and entered it into the manufacturer’s website in search of an owners manual or parts list.  There was a parts list!  I downloaded and scrolled through the pages, not even seeing my part.  Finally, I just did a Ctrl-F on the pdf to find the word “diffuser” and found the diffuser assembly.  It had a different part number.  Apparently the other part number must have been for the styrofoam itself, which they do not sell separately because there would be no way to put all the other parts in it without some sort of mechanical press.  This is good news, because it seems as though the broken arm thing is included in that assembly.  I checked that part with the local appliance store and it did not bring up any results.  I typed it into Google and found that part had been replaced with a different part number (probably with a stronger plastic arm).  I looked that part number up at the local appliance parts store and they do have 4 in stock.

So, knowing the earliest I could get the part would be Monday, and knowing that I would like to keep at least some waters and maybe some cherries of something cold until then, we attempted to temporarily fix the arm with super glue.  However, due to the location of the break down inside the groove of the styrofoam where it would be too narrow to clamp, and also due to the break being right on the elbow, we were unable to get it to stick.

At this point we decided to open the doors halfway (just a guess) and reassemble everything.  It will prevent the temperature from being changed by the control, but it should allow the cold air to flow between the refrigerator and freezer.  We have no way of knowing how open the doors should be to keep the refrigerator cool, and we have no way of knowing whether everything in there will be freezing things in the fridge, just right, or still too hot.  We have decided to hold off on buying any perishables until after I can get the part on Monday.

Assembling the refrigerator and freezer didn’t go back together as easily as disassembly.  For one thing, I used the wrong screws in the wrong place so we were trying to cram ourselves into the freezer balancing a phillips heard screw on the top of the screwdriver trying to drive it straight up into the top of the freezer to hold onto the panel.  It turns out that there was some screws with a 1/4 inch nut pattern that would have fit in the edge of my 1/4 inch nut driver that went there, and the phillips head screws were used for a control container and which you can place and screw downward, so as not to drop the screws everywhere.  When putting up the panel in top of the freezer, we must have dropped each screw fifteen times, and at a couple of points, they fell into the lower basket where I had moved the remaining frozen food.  Then we had to dig them out.

I didn’t sleep good last night, and am really wiped out by this whole thing.  After my dad left, I kind of lost it, because I am just tired of everything being so damned hard.  I really figured that by this point, things would be starting to get a little easier for me again but even when I seem to be a little healthier, life is throwing punches my way.  Punches I could likely handle were it not for everything else built up.

Monday morning at 8 am, I will be at the parts store waiting for them to open.  I will buy a diffuser assembly for roughly $45 and fix the damn thing, remembering to trade screws back on reassembly.  It sucks that I have to wait until Monday, and all this work was a bit more than the heat exhausted and sleep deprived me could handle this early…but on the bright side if I called some repair guy out (and who knows when he could arrive), he’d probably have to order the part too, mark it up, and charge me for labor.  I have heard of thermistor replacement jobs being in the $300 range.  The thermistor is even cheaper than the diffuser, as low as $15.  A new fridge with those features would be $1200 or so.  Reconditioned, I could find one for about $900.

And, if the thermistor ever goes now I know how to fix that too.

So I guess this is a small win, and it is great to win and everything; but maybe there could be some rest in between the times I need to fight to win with life.  What to you say life, can ya help me out here?

Making It Through

Hello dear reader(s)!

Yesterday we were in triple digits again, but today it is expected to be MUCH cooler.  Finally the cool down we have been hoping for is upon us.  Today’s expect high is a nice, mild, 98 degrees.  Easy.

I am of course, kidding.  Anything above 85 here might as well be 105.  After 105, it might as well be 15,000.  This is of course in the Farenheit measuring system, because I think 98 Celsius would be only possible after a hydrogen bomb goes off.  Still, we are doing our best to make it through.

A couple of days ago, my refrigerator started getting warm.  The freezer was fine, but the fridge was not.  I turned up the fridge and we waited some to no avail.  I turned it back down and it seemed to help, but it was warm again this morning.  Luckily, all of this happened toward the end of our refrigerated food supplies, so the waste will not add up to a back-breaking amount.  This morning, I looked for reasons this issue may be occurring and found that there could either be a bad fan between the freezer and fridge, or the vents between are blocked.  There was a tiny bit of ice slightly obstructing a vent, but I am not certain it would have been enough to cause a problem.  I can hear the fan (I think) running in the freezer, so I doubt it is that.  I cleaned off all the ice and am waiting to see if it cools down.  If not, I will have to call my dad to come over and assist me in diagnosing and repairing.  I just hope the issue is repairable.  In the mean time, we are holding off on buying any refrigeration required items which is not good for both health and the wallet.

So after the ice scraping, and warm water melting, I decided to head to the grocery store to purchase a small amount of cottage cheese, a some small fruit cup or something for Hannah, and some muffins, cherries, and a coffee for me.  I usually make my own coffee, but with no milk because of no refrigeration, I had to rely on the more expensive coffee shop coffee.  So I went to the store and they had a Peet’s inside, which was good because I could order my large, almond milk, iced, white mocha, with no whip and drink it while getting the rest of the items required.  After I order the coffee and go to pay for it, I open my wallet to find my debit card is not in there.  I had given it to Hannah the day before when she ran in for some water and ingredients for last night’s vegetarian chili.

Fortunately, I had my tax refund debit card on me with a total balance of $13 remaining.  I knew I could at least get the coffee, some muffins, and pick up a ginger ale because Hannah had an upset stomach.  The cherries, cottage cheese, and fruit cup would have to wait.  So I grabbed my trusty tax refund debit card and swiped it through the payment machine.

“It says it is the wrong PIN.”

“Um, okay,” I said as I swiped again.

“It says the PIN is still wrong.”

“No, this is the right PIN,” I said as I swiped a third time.

“I’m sorry, it still says that it is wrong.”

At that point I asked her if she could stick my iced coffee in the fridge while I called my card provider.  I think I knew the problem.  You see, Hannah knows the PIN on my main card, but (because I do not like the same PIN on everything, I made the PIN on the tax refund card different.  I told her, but she forgot one day and kept trying the PIN from the regular card.  I would have assumed that any lock would be off, but I guess not.  As I called, the automated system told me that, sure enough, the PIN needed to be reset.  After answering all the security stuff I reset my PIN and was finally able to buy the coffee.  But how would I pay for the rest?  Even with no cherries, cottage cheese, and fruit cup, I doubted the remaining balance would be enough to cover.  Fortunately, I had $4 in cash.

I get the items, totaling it up in my head, and go to pay at the self checkout so I can do a split transaction.  I started with the cash and was relieved when the remaining total would be within the balance left on the card.

On the way home, around a blind curve, roughly 35 feet from the end of the block where there is plenty of sight and cross walks, I almost hit a group of 4 slow-moving people walking diagonally across the street.  They did not speed up once they saw me, no, instead they glared like I was the one in the wrong.  By this point, the heat was getting pretty bad.

I finally arrive home and go to unload the groceries.  Thinking I am being smart, I angle the Beastess as much under the shade as possible and look for a car window shade in the back.  (I used to have 4 pop-up ones.)  Well, now I only have 1.  Not sure why, but, whatever.  So I put the shade in the window where the most sun will shine in, and hang the towel I usually put on the seat (to stop the sweaty back that comes with leather) into the window and roll it up to hold it as a shade for that window.  I then go back to the back to grab the groceries to go inside, feeling somewhat successful.

That is when I see, in what seemed like slow-motion, the ginger ale making its way out of the bottom of the bag.  I tried to reach down and stop it, but this only served to allow the break to happen halfway in and halfway out of the bag.  Glass and ginger ale were now all over everything.  I cleaned things up the best I could, picked up the larger pieces of glass, closed up the Beastess, and went inside utterly defeated.

We’re almost out of cat food, and due to the holiday, I will need to pick up another couple of cans before the case I ordered arrives.  That means I will have to go out again at some point.  Given my previous attempt, I am pretty scared.

We’re barely hanging on, and as soon as I can muster up some energy when it is cooler, I am determined to find some ways to keep us cool and okay in what is sure to be an awful summer.  Not yet sure what that will be, but we are going to make it through.  We’ve been though enough hell already, no fucking heat is going to beat us!

Saturday…In the House…Think It Is The 27th of June

Hello dear reader(s)!

How the hell are all of you this fine Saturday morning?

I woke up to the swamp cooler already being turned on by my lovely Hannah (who probably woke up at 4) and I shut it off at about 12 am before I went to bed, meaning, the damn thing has been running almost all day for the past 5 days.  It is hot.  Too hot.  Yesterday, our area tied a record for the day that has stood since 1968.  1968.  That is insane that people in the 60’s could survive this kind of heat with their less-efficient AC and lack of good insulating windows.  Also, bottled water was not commonplace, so I wonder how they stayed hydrated.  Beer maybe?  Although the alcohol is not such an efficient hydration tool.

Speaking of tools, how about Ted Cruz and Mike Huckabee?

My cat was up in the window chittering at the birdies.  It is a beautiful morning and would be great barbecue weather if you felt like grilling in the morning.  Unfortunately, later today, it will not be beautiful, it will be hot, and I might have to murder someone for their more powerful central air system.  I’m sure I could assume someone’s identity.

Still, I am in a good mood.  Not just because of the recent events of the last week.  Not just because my nosebleed last night ran for less than 5 minutes, as opposed to the hours long nosebleeds I was getting as the blasts were taking over my blood.  Not just because I woke up to news that someone had scaled the flagpole in SC to remove the Confederate Battle flag since lawmakers are attempting to wait out the public outrage over the symbol to die down so they can keep it.  (Yes, the flag is back up, but symbols have meaning, and non-violent civil disobedience removing a symbol of hate from public property gets this guy excited.)

I hope this positive outlook lasts through the heating of the day, but I am pretty prepared for another day of whining and home wet t-shirt contests that only I participate in.  I swear to you, and you can’t make this up, well, you could if you wanted I suppose, you could make anything up, couldn’t you?  Except for maybe down, but I digress.  At any rate, where was I?  Ah yes, yesterday I soaked one of my t-shirts and put it on, and after the icy chill of about 5 minutes and when I first sat down against a towel on my chair, it didn’t do any good.  It was dry within 20 minutes.

Hannah and I have been pissy with each other the past few days.  We’re not having problems, we’re just miserable, so everything sounds like we are snapping at each other.  Usually we are not, but are just annoyed with everything heat related and it comes out in our voices.  I am trying to be mindful of it, but it isn’t easy because it is simply too damn hot to be mindful of anything.

However, last night, during the slight cool-down in the dark, I had an epiphany.  World peace could be achieved if everyone would just move to cooler climate areas.

Think about it, where are the current hot-spots for violence?  Places that get too damn hot.  Does violence happen elsewhere?  Yes, but not as often, and more often in those areas when it is unusually hot.  Police use to theorize that more people are out in the summer and therefore you are going to see more incidents…but I think there is more to it.  I just think the human mind is not capable of dealing with this much heat and irrationally lashes out at totally unrelated things.

Israel doesn’t hate Palestine, they are too fucking hot, and vice versa.  Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Syria?  Too fucking hot.  The deep South?  Too fucking hot.  Texas?  Too hot.

The only reason Las Vegas has not turned into a hot-bed for extremism is because even if you don’t have a great AC, you can always stand in a casino that is kept nice and comfortable at no charge.  And get drunk while you’re at it.  And if you are an angry drunk, instead of an “I love you, man” drunk, then there is a lot of security to take you to the nice air-conditioned holding cells, possibly giving you a fine for disorderly and sending you on your way the next morning.

I am currently looking at designing a machine I call “The World Happiness Maker” which is essentially a giant, space-based, green AC unit that will just blast cold air into our atmosphere and blow the hot air out into deep space.  Since our carbon emissions trap the heat in, and powerful industry doesn’t look like they want to slow that any time soon, I figure not only is this necessary to our environment, but to the mental well being and peace on this planet.

“But Josh, what about the tropics?”

We’ll try to angle the giant vents away from popular vacation destinations as the people in the tropics, for the most part, seem to be able to tolerate the heat better than the rest of us.  My assumption on that would be the easy access to the ocean.  It might also be due to the large amounts of weed in those areas, but either way, we do need some warm vacation destinations.

If you would like to support “The World Happiness Maker” design and build, you can do so by going to my GoFundYourselfIamNotSerious page.  I accept all currencies except for the soon to be released Drachma.

Too Hot In The Hot Tub!!

Hello dear reader(s)!

I apologize for the short posts of this day’s posting of the posts on this day, but it is so hot that I have to routinely stop typing in order to prevent the keys on my keyboard from melting.

credit The Weather Channel
credit The Weather Channel

This map is now about 40 minutes old.  We still have between 2 and 3 hours of heating left here in the West Sieeeda, so where I am will most certainly reach triple digits.

It is just barely summer.  This is way too early for this kind of heat wave.  I don’t like it.

I could write a big post about climate change and all that but I think I’ve made my views on that subject pretty clear.  So instead, I just want to say to all of you that I hope you are staying as cool, hydrated, and safe as possible.

And just for fun, I am sharing this video.  It is not great quality, but it is fun.