Linguini Mountain

Names changed to protect the innocent.

And guilty.

Here we go. Before you read this you will need to take some reasonable precautions:

i love VFDs

The road up Linguini Mountain is the kind of thing either dreams or nightmares are made of. It’s well maintained but narrow and unpaved. One edge is a small anti erosion ditch that could easily snag a wheel; the other edge is…… Let’s not think about that too hard, but man what a view

After a switchback that inexplicably shut down the truck engine and those VFD readouts pictured above went blank…. Umm…. Yeah… I made it

Okay, no clue what’s with that but let’s just go inside.

At the far wall sits this generator. It’s too small to run the transmitter so there’s an emergency backup relay system that switches the exciter output straight to the antenna if the site is on gen power, so it remains on the air at low power.

Beyond this point, uhhHERE BE DRAGONS

This transfer switch….. I have no words.

Not exactly what Burk Technologies had in mind for their ARC-16 control ports but ok

Wait maybe on the other hand that was better

Wait what’s going on here

No this can’t be

That isn’t seriously—–??

The air filter was not in use, it ought to be just squeaky clean in that cavity..

Gonna cautiously assume that’s at least 240vac exposed

Old marti repurposed to send telemetry but wait what’s that?

And where’s it powered?

Wait wait enhance

That’s… A tree spine jamming the wires in

Reportedly this QEI won’t run if you put the cover on

That twisted pair bridge wire runs who knows where

Welp. Looks like i have a project.

What is any of this

There are mountains on one side and orange groves on the other. The bus is a Gillig low floor that looks like it either gets fully cleaned nightly or it juuuuust rolled up here from Hayward.

Something tells me I’m not on MDT anymore.

The other coast.

I’m in California, cooking dinner on this glorious range. It’s almond, chrome, and fake wood behind glass.

And it glows.

I’m up in the small towns north of Sacramento. They don’t have traffic reports up here because they don’t need them. Can I retire my #trafFUCKED tag?

Grocery bags seem to cost 10 cents each at the stores but they’re a very thick, strong plastic, intended to be reused “up to 125 times”. I’m not complaining… Just kinda a new thing.

Also there are mountains and there’s this one road, California 20, from Donner Pass to Nevada City, that I’ve named “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA Highway”.

Deep thoughts from the road

Florida: the AARGH, Only One Lane Open State. Also amusing hurricane damage in the form of this sign:

[W] [A] [F] [F] [L] [E]

[H] [O] [_] [S] [_]

Georgia: Land of Abandoned Motels

Alabama: …. Nothing but abandoned gas stations for like three hours. Gas prices on the signs frozen at $4+ a gallon when the region collapsed. What happened? I vaguely remember NPR talking about it.

Tennessee: why is your major city in a corner? Huh? Think we spent literally 15 minutes in the state

Kansas:

Image from the Rachelle Unplugged blog.

Colorado: road signs ominously warning “Winter is coming!!!”

Unpopular Opinions (?)

The Monroe Systems DASDEC literally looks like some hack job I’d have put together out of shell scripts and awful HTML on a Fedora Core Linux box made of spare parts in my parents’ living room when I was 17 years old and still thought Drowning Pool was kinda great

That charming feeling

A police officer just warned me not to leave the property of my apartment complex and cross the street over to the trashed mobile home park across the street because they’ve already hauled off five of my neighbors from this complex for walking over there under cover of darkness and looting.

My neighbors. Ha ha hahahahaha *gag* what

So we made it through Irma. No power and our phones just started working this evening. Ham radio was useless as there are few people on it here and the repeaters are awful little things with no emergency power. Until Internet access returned, the only source of local information was BBC World Service being carried by WLRN. Broward County isn’t telling local media anything. Glorious!

The area is a total mess. At this point I’m just looking forward to getting away from it. That’ll be a while though as our gas stations all went dry SEVEN DAYS AGO and none have been refilled. Some stores have reopened on limited hours (due to the curfew I only know about thanks to BBC World Service!!) but they are not restocking.

Had the first real dinner in a while tonight though. We used one of the big iron charcoal grills out in the common area to barbecue some burgers and hot dogs. I never want to see crackers and peanut butter again.

Just looking forward to things ascending back from “third world post apocalyptic” to “third world war zone” as usual. Le sigh. A cold front would be just as welcome.

NOPE. THAT. SHIT.

So here’s why I would have gotten fired this weekend if not for the fact that I’d already resigned with two weeks’ notice.

I found out early today that I would have been expected to come to work and ride out Hurricane Irma right here:

Which is right here….

And those bands are the outer bands of this….

Which at the time was forecast to do THIS.

I’m sorry, I did like my job there for the most part, but if asked to ride out the storm there, in a building which got three feet of water in it during Andrew which didn’t even hit that area much at all…. Well, I’d have just plain refused.

I was hearing stories of how the staff held off on evacuating until it was actually already difficult to get over the causeway due to storm surge and wind.

I’m sorry. It’s one thing to be a dedicated team player with the company. It’s another to endanger your safety to fight a losing battle to keep a broadcast going.

Not much one could do with three feet of seawater in the studios and electrical rooms.

And for that I’m assuming I would have been fired in one of those furious scenes.

This is of course assuming it’s still on a course for us as of morning– there’s some potential for a deviation westwards.

But still, not worth it.

In a couple of weeks, northern California will be my home. The only common natural disasters known there are wildfires. I’m okay with this.

because we're management and fuck you that's why

Yesterday our apartment complex put out reminders on everyone’s doors that we are not allowed to cover or tape* any windows to prepare for Hurricane Irma.

Today, the manager’s apartment windows are boarded up, as well as the rental office.

Meme semi related.

* taping windows is actually totally useless

Flori-DONE

This morning, some prick jammed a toothpick through the sidewall of one of my tires. Yes– one of THOSE damn tires.

This coming about two days before what’s expected to be a Category 4 hurricane wiping Florida like a piss soaked rag being thrust onto your windshield by a zombie bum in downtown Miami.

Beautiful! Luckily, that same Tire Kingdom (yes, Bullet Hole Kingdom) still stocks that size tire.

There’s no propane, bottled water, canned foods, bread, batteries, or anything else particularly useful left in the stores, and it’s been that way since Monday night. I actually saw some of the questionable little “Food Store” places in the… unsavory areas… spray painted “No Supplies Inside” or “No Water” on their roll up shutters. Yes… All the way back on Monday.

This is pretty much a guarantee that hilarious price gouging will happen on a widespread basis, and to the first person who tries to use supply-side economics to justify this, I will counter with the following argument:

Say I have a great surplus of a special kind of large trout. Its prime directive is to be used for slapping people in the face. However, I have far more slapping trout than I can use, so the cost of a trout slap is so low I just have to deliver them free of charge.

To your heartless late-stage capitalist face.

  • KG4CYX slaps you around a bit with a large trout!
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