Sidekick 3

I was at the Burlington mall for a while yesterday to get some brake work done on my truck and I stopped by at one of the T-Mobile booths to get my Sidekick's hip holster replaced. The guy at the booth didn't have any holsters and claimed that the Sidekick 2 has been recalled because they plan to release the Sidekick 3 before Christmas. The guy went further to say that the Sidekick 3 will have Bluetooth support and run some form of Windows. Now all the thing needs is GPS and it'd be the ideal mobile device, in my opinion. Anyway, it looks like I'll probably be upgrading my phone, GPS or no.

Transform and Roll Out Mother Beeches

I have now obtained Transformers: Season 2, Part 2, thus completing my collection of Transformers cartoons. This can be described as a successful accomplishment of one of my life goals. Money can't buy happiness, but it can buy things that bring happiness.

He he, Megatron just lifted Lincoln out of the chair at his memorial and used it as a throne. Now it's Dinobot smashing time, hooray! Oh man, this is going to make my being unemployed just that much more fun.

Repairs: Derailed

It was looking to be dry enough to do a bit of truck work so I set about doing so. First things first, I hopped under my truck and checked that the oil filter and oil pan drain plug were nice and tight; they were. Having checked my prime leak suspects, I checked my oil level, seemed fine, which leads me to wonder if I just under-filled it earlier, which is what I'm going to assume for now because I'm lazy and that's the easiest assumption to deal with. Then I checked to see if my rear brakes are drum or disc; they're drum brakes (grumble grumble). I'm not the big fan of replacing drum brakes, because it's a bit more effort consuming than replacing disc brakes, so I came up with a brilliant idea to get around the matter and get my tires replaced. Since I have been paying for my car insurance, and saving my parents a pretty penny, I thought I might see if I could talk my mom into springing to pay for replacing my tires and brakes. I figured that it would probably cost me on the order of $300 in parts and $400 all told, because that's about what it would cost for the same operations on all previous cars I'd dealt with and my mom seemed amenable to the idea, so I set off for Sears Auto Center to see about getting it all taken care of. Sadly, it turns out, Ford Explorer parts are about twice as expensive as Honda Accord or Toyota Corolla parts and replacing my tires and brakes will be a bit over $600 in parts and about $700 all told. $700 being rather a good bit more than $300-$400, pretty well derails my plans for brakes and tires and puts me back at waiting until I have some money of my own before dealing with anything on my truck.

However, I did just get a paycheck that I'd forgotten to expect...

Truck Repairs

I need to do a bit of work on my truck as soon as the weather will allow it (damned rain). The big thing that I need to do are get under my truck and check that the oil filter and oil pan drain plug are tightened sufficiently; I seem to have developed a slow oil leak since I changed my oil, which makes them my prime suspects. Beyond that, I'm pretty sure that I need to change my brake pads (I really hope that I have rear disc brakes and don't have to deal with drums). After that, I'm going to make a check of all my fluid levels and go back to waiting for enough money to change my tires. I'll probably fiddle around with things a bit too, just for fun.

For those of you that are concerned, these are minor issues I can deal with myself, except the tires, that I need money for. Soon I get work, then I get tires, that's the plan. Until then, I've got a spare so I'm ok if anything goes wrong (except for a high-speed blow-out).

And yes, I am phrasing things to incite you.

Beat up old cars are great.

Bored Bored Bored Bored Bored

I knew it was going to happen and I'm sure spending September watching television didn't help, I'm tired of doing nothing. Truth be told, I'm kind of surprised that it happened so quickly, I was expecting it to take another week or so. So, what am I going to do about it you might ask, yeah me too. Well, I've already begun turning the slow wheels towards getting myself a job to make money for now, but I doubt that will do everything I need. I've started working on turning the Silly Clown Joke into an unnecessarily long story in writing, which makes for one side project. I'm also reading up to try and get better at Go, a side-effect of the fact that Go seems to be getting popular around my parts of Senior House and I'm not any good at the game. Maybe I should find myself a girlfriend who I can pay a lot of attention to in order to pass the time and amuse myself. I expect that I'll probably find some way to keep myself entertained, and the longer I take finding it, the harder I'll be looking.

I think that I can fit you in at...

A number of people have recently expressed interest in hanging out with me now that I'm back in the vicinity of Cambridge so I thought that it might be about time to remind people of how very easy it is to get me to hang out. Normally I maintain a pretty sparse schedule but since I'm currently unemployed (which for some reason I really enjoy saying right now), I'm keeping a nearly empty schedule. To hang out with me one need simply find a place where I'm already hanging out or get me to come to wherever one is, both of which are easy tasks, which I will explain how to accomplish. In order to find a place where I am already hanging out, I highly recommend calling my cell phone and asking me but, beyond that, when I'm not at home, I am usually in Destiny Kitchen or 433. As for getting me to come hang out with you, just tell me where and when (you can schedule me in as far in advance as you like--first come, first serve--but for more than a couple days, you'll probably have to remind me); the best ways to tell me are call my cell phone, AIM me or e-mail me. As far as getting a hold of me, I should add the caveats that I don't get cell reception at home and I'm not AIMable or quick to respond to e-mail when I'm asleep. Worst case, leave me a voicemail and I'll get back to you next time I have reception. In general, I need about 5 minutes notice if I'm in the city or 30 minutes notice if I'm at home.

If you don't know my cell phone number, AIM username or e-mail address, ask me next time you see me or post a comment on this post.

Back in the World

I have returned to the world of the people that I know; aka. Cambridge-ish, MA (namely Concord, MA, which is 30 minutes from Cambridge). Having returned, things are going to be back to a funny variant of what they were before my departure at the end of June. Anyway, long story short, I'm back to the world of off-Cape, hope y'all are glad to have me back.

The Acetone Truck: No Problems So Far

I've been dumping acetone into my truck's gas tank for a while now and I'm happy to report that it appears to be harmless to the truck: no unexpected explosions, no stalling, no loss of power, nothing negative. I can definitively say that the acetone has not decreased my fuel efficiency, but I can not yet say if it has increased my efficiency at all. I'm going to run a few more tanks with acetone after I get back to Concord and my driving habits stabilize (drive to Cambridge, drive back, repeat a bunch). After I get a solid baseline of Concord to Cambridge runs with acetone, I'll do a few tanks without acetone and see if I can notice a change. In the name of science I will make a point of getting gas at the same gas station as much as absolutely possible.

I started my testing with 1/4 cup acetone per 15 gallon tank (~1.3oz/10gal), using acetone from a 1 gallon container of pure acetone that I bought at WalMart for the purposes of this experiment. Using the same acetone, I stepped up to 1/3 cup acetone per 15 gallon tank (~1.8oz/10gal) and continued to have no problems. I'm planning to step up to 1/2 cup per 15 gallon tank (~2.7oz/10gal) before I start doing my real data gathering. I may go up to 2/3 cup per 15 gallon tank (~3.6oz/10gal) after I get some solid evidence to support the effectiveness of acetone as a fuel additive.

Shadowrun on the Xbox 360

It looks as though Microsoft has decided to capitalize on their ownership of FASA Interactive and the rights to all FASA based video games. Production is underway on a Shadowrun game for the Xbox 360 (related articles here and here and elsewhere). It looks like Microsoft may have found a way to convince me to buy an Xbox 360 or, at the very least, get under my skin about it. God I hope this game doesn't suck.