Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Holes in My Hose

I was sitting there, minding my own business, as most of these stories begin, and there's a voicemail from the Good neighbor. The one who hasn't called the city because my lawn hasn't been edged 'correctly'. This lady is the neighbor you want to have; the sweet old lady. She is the one Marshall has trained to feed him on command. He goes out by her door and barks once. She appears with a hot dog or something and feeds him.  If she fails to feed him, he will sit there and stare at her door, through sun, rain, and snow. He 'buys' her flowers and assorted goodies, like a Pet by Proxy.

The voicemail said that the hose was leaking and there was a lot of water.


My wife collects many things, among them hoses and hose accessories. Just last week I attached a new hose and nozzle. Why? Because the other one was old. Ok. We started with a generic hose. It's the same kind of hose everyone had. It was a good hose, a sturdy hose. When you needed to water or fill the dog's pool, it was the hose to use. Because the hose sat, I ran it over on one of my dreaded interactions with the mower. Then the flat hose, featured on countless infomercials, with very loud, fast-talking pitchmen. This either sat in its box or spontaneously disappeared - I can't keep track. The next hose either got old or a house fell on it.

The new hose is green, as they tend to be, but has some odd fabric covering on it and tends to shrivel up or something when there's no water flowing. While I'm fine with computer systems and networks, the Hose Parade escapes me. With the overriding motto in my head (Happy Wife, Happy Life), I tightened all the fittings. There, Dear; new hose.

After the neighbor notice I went immediately to the Hose Site. When I say immediately, I mean after a brief stop at the snack table and Snapple dispensary.  My sharp-eyed neighbor was correct: there was lots of water. The nozzle itself was in perfect condition, not allowing one drop of water to flow. The hose, however, had quite a number of pinpricks in it, with little sprays of water gracing the air, causing a misting effect in spots. While this is good on a 95 degree day at Disney, while waiting in a two hour line, it's not so good toward a summer evening by a house.

A new hose.

The faucet was wide open, which verifies Wife used it. Wife seems to think that if it works, it'll work better turned up full. Unfortunately this is her attitude toward too many things in life. I'm surprised the plumbing in the shower hasn't spit pipes or fixtures at us yet. After I applied the software updates and manual intervention (I turned off the faucet), the deluge stopped.

Upon notifying Wife that new hose needed to be returned, she said it was years old. Well if it was years old, why wasn't it hooked up years ago? And why does an old hose automatically develop quite a number of holes? And why am I even blathering on about this? Maybe there will be some Intensive Hose Expeditions in our future. Just so long as I don't have to mow.  Know what keeps me awake at night? The thought that the kid we have mowing the lawn will grow up and move away.

  • There is a very old, very serious vulnerability in Diebold ATMs. Mind you, this is the company that manufactures voting machines. Although serious, the vulnerability requires putting a rod through the speaker, jacking open the top half, then doing some software jiggling, hopefully someone would notice this happening, even if the guy with the crowbar was wearing a coverall that said ATM MAINTENANCE GUY.

The Gun Grabbers are atwitter about 'smart guns', which can't fire without certain factors, like a special bracelet. A hacker recently did a presentation on a number of ways to defeat a specific German system, one involving radio waves and another a few cheap magnets. One also wonders if there will be time and opportunity to put on a bracelet before having to use the gun, but that's a different matter entirely.

  • I wanted to bring you this important bit of information before you hear it somewhere else: not being attracted to trans people is deeply transphobic. 
  • In response, someone ventured: Hey lesbians, refusing to sleep with straight guys is deeply heterophobic. Bring your girlfriend too. Monogamous relationships are a patriarchal western ideal anyway.

An unnamed casino got hacked. How? The Internet of Things fish tank. After they got in through the tank, they went wild on the casino's network. This is a preview of what's coming to your house.

  • After you buy your router, here are some tips to secure the beast. They're all pretty simple and common sense, but help immensely.

If you're a customer of Virgin America, WestJet, or Spirit Air, your data may be in the wild. Check with the airline and change your passwords, at very least.

  • Remember lefty's Law: anything worth doing can be done from the couch

I mentioned that we were testing out Zakk Wylde's Valhalla and Death Wish coffees. Death Wish has much more caffeine than regular coffee. I was told they drink like medium roast and they weren't kidding.  They weren't bad but I'm continuing with Peet's French Roast. I missed the body and roast. The caffeine boost didn't do much for me. I am not panning the brand - I urge you to try it, especially if you like medium roast coffee.

  • It should come as no surprise by now that there are internet-connect car washes. As we, ThermionicEmissions readers know, if there's a system, there's a hack. And this one's a doozy. This particular hack can literally have the car wash attack your car and you! Not really as bad as a feature-length movie about a rogue car wash attacking a small city, this one can potentially strand your car, hit it with some sprayers, and dump some water. Note to first daters: you can be the hero and rescue your date from the Evil Car Wash. That would have to be worth some points...

Speaking of hacks, check out - put in your email address and see if it exists on any number of hack lists. This may be a depressing click.

In strange related Hose News, we experienced a Plumbing Issue. The issue got what looked like a bandaid. The Issue sprouted up in another place. While attempting the Bandaid Maneuver, it popped up in other places. Suffice it to say that it has become a Rather Large Plumbing Issue, which insurance may or may not cover. It's potentially an Expensive Rather Large Plumbing Issue, unlike the Hose Issue.

You will note the timing on this coincides with the upcoming biopsy on Marshall's oral growth.

Notice we have savings: Marshall's biopsy and Plumbing Issue
Notice we don't have enough savings: Marshall's biopsy and Plumbing Issue.
Notice that, as George Harrison said, It's All Too Much: Mrs. lefty has been non-functional for a while.

Marshall, bless him, has to be bribed to take his ridiculous amount of meds. We've been through peanut butter, cheesecake, lunchmeat, leftovers, French Toast Sticks, and now American cheese. He's walking around like Tommy Chong; saying, "Wow, man" and sleeping a lot.

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