Fair Warning

Posting may be a little light over most of August:  I’m having a little vacation (locally) because this every-day-getting-up-at-3.30am business is tiring me out, so I need to recharge the old batteries somewhat.  Also, this fucking heat has been getting on top of me, so a lot of the time will be spent in sub-zero air conditioning, putting the finishing touches to a couple of books I should have finished earlier in the year.

This year, winter can’t come too soon.

As always however, there will be a fresh post each day.  I may be on vacation, but that doesn’t mean I can shirk my responsibilities…

I Think You Have The Wrong Lazy-Ass

In Comments to my Moving Day 1 post came all this helpful advice:

“Do the smart thing. Spend the money it takes to rent a truck and get everything in one load instead of trying to move it piecemeal with your car/friends cars. It saves time, money, and your back.”

That.

But go one step further: palletize everything. A standard pallet (in the US) is 48″ X 40″ wide, what’s generically referred to as a GMA pallet (Grocery Mfg’s Assoc) and excellent quality used ones are available for – usually – $5. Lowe’s, Home Despot, Menard’s, Staples, Walmart, Orifice Depot, et al sell a variety of boxes, especially ones 16″W X 16″ W X 18″ tall. GMA pallets are 6.5″ high, most garage doors (and storage unit roll-ups) are 84″-86″ high. A little math shows 4 layers of 6 boxes + the pallet = 79″ (approx), so individual loose boxes can be stacked on top of a pallet once it’s “parked” so now you’re moving & loading 24 (heavy) boxes at a time with wheels, not your back, plus even a pallet-load of the light ones that get stacked on top of full pallets.
Cheap pallet trucks (<$200) are available from places like Northern Tool, Harbor Freight, etc. Pallet stretch wrap film at Amazon in 1500 ft rolls is a package of 4 <$50. “Going the extra mile” is defined as spending <$175 on a 7K ft roll of 1/2″ strapping, a tensioner, crimping tool and a 1K box of strap crimps (using strapping “buckles” to tension strapping allows omitting the crimps and crimp tool). Depending on what’s in your area, it may be possible to rent everything above except the single-use strapping, crimps and stretch film. If you have to buy it, I’m betting you can sell the reusable parts of “Kim’s compleat moving kit” when you’re done for 50-65% of your original cost. And, if you think about it, unless you live in an apartment up three flights of stairs, a 4,000 lb capacity pallet truck can often be a handy thing to have around, especially if one has things like large tool boxes, work benches, safes, etc.
In a lot of cases, even moving-blanket-wrapped furniture can be palletized. Takes up more space in the truck, but it’s now wheeled freight movable by one person, not “back testers” requiring 4 willing (or drunk) friends.

Forget all that shit. With the help of the Son&Heir & Canucki Girlfriend, I packed all my stuff into a couple dozen storage tubs, a few suitcases and some boxes, and called a local moving company ($250 total cost, plus $20 tip).  It was the PACKING and UNPACKING that exhausted me.  I had no idea how easily I can accumulate trash.  Won’t happen again — the apartment is too small to accumulate possessions, and I refuse to rent a storage unit because Plano-Expensive (#CheapBastard).

As for the pictures I used?  That’s called visual hyperbole.  The only things I actually moved myself were the guns and some clothing.

Moving Day 2

…and Kim’s relocation continues today:

Actually, just one final load:

…I wish.

Why did the move take three whole days, with a day between Day 1 and Day 2, you may ask?

(Picture is fake, but accurate.)

Also, by Sunday morning I was exhausted, so I took most of the day off.

Moving Day 1

So I’ll be moving into my new apartment later today, with the kind assistance of friends and family:

That’s not everything, of course;  the contents of Ye Olde Ammoe Locquer will require a separate trip:

…and needless to say I’ll be moving the humble remnants of my once-extensive gun collection myself:

Oh, stop it.  Remember that in Texas, this is referred to as a “starter” set.

The big stuff — furniture, appliances etc. — will get moved on Monday.

And speaking of assistance:  if anyone cares to spare some couch change to help me defray expenses, your generosity will be much appreciated.  This “starting afresh” business is expensive.

RFI #2: Printer

As I got such valuable input from y’all in my search for a vacuum cleaner, I’m throwing out another plea for help on the choice of a printer.

I need one that can work off a wi-fi network, but I’m ignorant / agnostic on the old inkjet vs. laser printer decision.  Actually, come to think of it, I could be satisfied with a USB cable-only printer if there’s a massive price difference.

I’m not interested in the do-it-all printers because I already have a good scanner, I cannot imagine any scenario where I’d need to send an actual fax and, from memory, the costs of said printers are outrageous.

A decent / low price is important simply because I only print about a dozen or so pages a month, and full color is unimportant.  Ditto cartridge / ink costs, which are really important.  Getting a $99 printer only to run up $1,200 a year on ink is counterproductive.

Most important is that I want a printer that doesn’t spy on me and send copies of whatever I’ve printed back to the manufacturer (I’ve heard that Brother printers do this, but my info may be out of date).  It’s not that I’m getting up to mischief on my computer, it’s just that when I do print stuff out, it’s generally taxes / financial / credit / legal stuff, and I’d rather keep all that private.

The last printer I actually bought for myself was a Hewlett-Packard HP500 inkjet number back in 1992, which should give you an idea how far behind the curve I find myself.

I await any and all recommendations.

Black Hole

For some unknown reason, the foul MS Outlook has been misbehaving over the past couple of months. For no reason, emails from some people were getting through, while others languished, uncollected, on my webmail server.

So I tried to re-install the blessed thing from MS Office, whereupon Outlook apparently got into a snit and disappeared from my laptop forever. (It would also have taken my address book as part of the divorce settlement except that in a moment of rare foresight, I’d backed up my contact list a little while ago, so while I may be missing a few recent additions, the majority of them have been saved.)

Thanks to Tech Support Wizard (TSW) BobbyK, I waved goodbye to Outlook

and managed to install and configure Thunderbird as a replacement, getting in the process something like seven hundred emails that I’d never seen before.

So please excuse my apparent rudeness in not replying earlier, but I never saw your emails because Outlook. [200,000-word rant deleted]

All those who were unable to register to comment here have had their emails passed on to TSW for his attention. If you’re still waiting for a response from me on some other issue, please do me the favor of re-sending your emails if it’s still germane or necessary. Ditto if you’ve only recently started to correspond with me, so I can add your addy to Ye Olde Addresse Booke.

As for MS Outlook: