You don’t have to see the world like an engineer, but it helps

Me: “there’s no way that small diamond shaped portal to the great beyond will work worth a damn”

Me one minute later: “hey at least this plunger is well designed”

Department of Asshole Blockades (DAB) – the random border patrol check!

I’ve never really entirely been sure what dabbing is but here’s a rendition of it in front of a transmitter under repair. You’ll need that image to help convey just how surreal this tale is.

This morning I received a new Ikegami camera and lens, well, new to me– it’s fully digital, recording standard definition to a DV tape! I have one already but the tape transport started giving out, so I decided that one will continue on being used with 1394 capture.

Unfortunately the new one had an Anton Bauer battery plate on the back, and all my power stuff is the Sony style V mount, so I couldn’t power it up in the field just yet. I did test it using the power supply for the Tieline Via at work and it all worked fine. Coming soon: the rant on the bad cult of Anton Bauer power. It’ll likely be of reasonable levels of shitposting…

So I’m leaving the office and stopped for gas. Prices are almost $3.60 due to the holiday— eww.

Then as I’m getting back in the car after pumping gas, a border patrol vehicle comes screaming in and switches on its takedown lights and the officer jumps out and dashes to me. Double eww.

The camera is sitting on the passenger seat. As he was pulling in, I’d propped it up so the lens was aimed at the window. Of course it wasn’t running or even powered, but you wouldn’t just know this. The officer comes to the window and starts to ask to see my ID, then…..

* DAB OF CONCEALMENT *

Guess he noticed the camera. He now had his face in his elbow and hand over his badges. Before he’d quickly covered them I saw an ICE badge (without a number or name) and a G4S identification card. I guess that answers my question as to whether contractors are being used for this garbage.

“Is that camera on satellite?”, he asked…. His elbow. I could barely understand him. I replied “yes” and he suddenly lost all interest in my identification and turned his back to me.

Now, to the pillar holding up the gas station canopy, he said “you can go, good night!”. This revealed a case of male pattern baldness and a badly drawn cluster of stars tattooed on his scalp peeking through the greasy weeds.

I started to leave and noticed my phone was showing no service. It had been working fine while I was pumping gas. I looked back at the car and sure enough, there was one of those dodgy shitbox cellular jammers with like six antennas haphazardly growing out of it sitting on the dash. My phone came back on about a block from the station.

A similar looking device. I couldn’t just save that image due to clever stylesheet abuse.

I kept half expecting to be followed into an ambush, like a particularly awful one I experienced in the Shitty of Miami, but nothing ever happened. It was just a stupid spot check and I apparently inadvertently washed out the spot. Out, damn spot, out!

So I may have mentioned before that I’ve started to have issues over the last year or so really processing bullshit like this as reality, because well, what in the actual fuck?

This was like, if my grasp on reality is a slice of a pizza that someone’s trying to pick up and remove but it’s got a few strings of hot cheese connecting it to the pie… this just came along and sliced them right off. Oops.

So here I am driving home feeling like I’m actually in some kind of dystopian projection and not even questioning it anymore…. I was going down highway 99 west and seeing where normally empty little side roads now had police lights flashing in the distance and thinking of how Salvador Dali revisited his famous “The Persistence of Memory” in The Disintegrating of the Persistence of Memory, breaking up the landscape into atoms as understanding of particle physics advanced, but with a kind of unnerving feel to it as if this was bringing on complete destruction. Is this just “normal” or is this a slow disintegration? What the heck is this?

Pardon the mess, this is the camera I was talking about, it’s huge. It’s one of these things that sits on your shoulder and then you have to try not to walk into walls any more than usual.

Also it doesn’t have this extra connector on the right that my other one does, and weighs noticeably less. I wonder what the difference is. I found the test pattern generator set to “IDPTV CAM2”, Idaho Public Television? … and the VTR hour counter at an amazing… old… EIGHT. Yeah, this was a studio camera most likely before the studio upgraded to HD. The Canon lens has a slightly whiny zoom motor that appears not to be serviceable as it’s in a cemented plastic cylinder,, but it’s getting quieter as I work it.

Maybe now I’ll get some nice dabbing videos.

Can’t trust you farther than this very short tape measure

you have no idea how many mosquito bites I got trying to capture the perfect long exposure of this with the strobes going off

I found this sitting in my drafts folder and it made me crack up laughing remembering how silly this was— it’s from months ago, likely when I was stuck in Princeton, Florida, needing to measure for the installation of something at A Beautiful Place Out in the Country. 

The store in question is likely the Florida City Walmart Supercenter.

I once formed this theory that this was basically the last tail end of all civilization after arriving there on the tail end of a session of battling Z-Bola and witnessing a late night bus pull up there and the passengers disembark to the tune of its engine shutting down with a long sigh and several dozen empty beer bottles being thrown one by one on the sidewalk.

I guess it’s finally come to this. Walked into a Miami location of a typical big box store that’s slowly losing all relevance to buy a tape measure. Got stopped at the front door by a security guard for a metal detector check.

Wait, what?

His detector never went off even after his forcibly and painfully whacking it into my steel jewelry and he waved me on.

I had to go find someone with a key to a locked cabinet for the tools. He arrived with a police officer in uniform who tailed me until I checked out. The police officer was annoyed with me going over to the grocery section to get a snack and yelled at me to go check out and leave instead.

The store had signs up indicating that they will soon cease accepting cash at their registers citing safety concerns, and will be reducing their operating hours to 9 AM-7 PM come summer. It seemed the no cash policy was already in place as a customer was arguing with the cashier over it. The cashier pulled out the empty drawer and showed it to the customer who was angrily shaking a $50 bill and didn’t seem to understand this meant that not only would they not accept cash, but even if they did, there’d be no change!

This is why we cannot have good things.

There may be a couple of things I miss about South Florida, but this was never one of them. As long as you don’t try to go to the Walmart in Redding, none of the retail stores here are sad warzones. Actually, the Redding Walmart is just a giant box full of sadness, gated off aisles, and locked cases from which you can buy nothing, and it’s a small miracle it hasn’t been closed down entirely. Nobody will miss it when it goes away.

that ‘satanic rock’ format is so popular amongst the 18-24 crowd

What you’ll find in most modern KMart stores

Sometimes it amazes me that K-Mart has lost relevance so quickly. I guess you could exchange anything in this with Walmart though, same difference. I should note that none of this necessarily matches my personal opinions, I’m just posting it as is.

Also I’d love to know what he’s referring to with Satanic rock on the radio, that’s a new format to me, but anyway—

The Anarchist’s Cookbook has always amused me as well in just what a load of hilarious crap it is. Almost nothing in it has any factual accuracy or would work for you in any positive way. It’s still amusing as heck just how long it’s been circulated, and I wonder if anyone’s tried to modernize it since?

From one of the versions of The Anarchist’s Cookbook, contributed by “Jolly Roger”:

Well, first off, one must realize the importance of K-Marts in society today. First off, K-Marts provide things cheaper to those who can’t afford to shop at higher quality stores. Although, all I ever see in there is minorities and Senior Citizens, and the poor people in our city. Personally, I wouldn’t be caught dead in there. But, once, I did. You see, once, after The Moon Roach and Havoc Chaos (Dear friends of mine) and I were exploring such fun things as rooftops, we came along a K-Mart. Amused, and cold for that matter, we wandered in. The Tension mounts. As we walked up to the entrance, we were nearly attacked by Youth Groups selling cheap cookies, and wheelchair sticken people selling American Flags. After laughing at these people, we entered. This is where the real fun begins… First, we wandered around the store, and turned on all the blue lights we could find. That really distracts and confuses the attendents…Fun to do… The first neat thing, is to go to the section of the store where they sell computers. Darkness engulfs the earth the day they find Apple Computers being sold there. Instead, lesser computers like the laughable C-64 can be found there…Turn it on, and make sure nobody’s looking…Then, once in Basic, type…

]10 PRINT “Fuck the world! Anarchy Rules!” (or something to that effect.)

]20 GOTO 10

and walk away. Also, set the sample radios in the store to a satanic rock station, and turn the radio off. Then, set the alarm for two minutes ahead of the time displayed there. Turn the volume up all the way, and walk away. After about two minutes, you will see the clerk feebly attempt to turn the radio down or off. It’s really neat to set ten or more radios to different stations, and walk away. One of my favorite things to do, is to get onto the intercom system of the store. Easier typed then done. First, check out the garden department. You say there’s no attendent there? Good. Sneak carefully over to the phone behind the cheap counter there, and pick it up. Dial the number corresponding to the item that says ‘PAGE’… And talk. You will note that your voice will echo all over the bowels of K-Mart. I would suggest announcing something on the lines of: “Anarchy rules!!”

Ah… The good ol’ Ryko NerveWracker

I hate the Ryko Thrust Pro dryer with a passion that burns like a thousand fiery suns. The usual issue I have with them is that a windshield wiper will get lifted off the glass just in time to go up the air channels and get lodged there and smashed to oblivion, either by the car’s movement or even the pneumatic system retracting the ‘follower’. It was not the best designed car wash dryer ever, okay?

That not exactly Solo Jazz swoosh pattern, though… The same cover plate was used in the US2001 overhead wash.

l o n g b o i

Well that answers my question I never exactly asked as to how Myat line sections come packed. Anyone want some firewood?

The pictures I took of the inside failed to save somehow… The section was supported down the length of the crate by 2×4 braces and foam in place packages.

Oops

At the entrance gate to one of my mountaintop sites I came across a pickup truck idling right before the gate with all the lights off. I got out next to it to unlock the gate and the truck kinda rustled a moment then the dome light eventually came on revealing a guy and a lady having hastily covered themselves up—-

Ooooooops, we have just experienced broadcast engineer induced coitus interruptus.

I managed to avoid laughing until I was well out of sight.

Come on man, there’s a much more secluded road you could have turned off on like 1/8 mile earlier.

1 2 3 4 83