Archive for January, 2004

Saturday, January 31st, 2004

When frustrated, it is unwise to destroy things. This is a lesson I should have learned when I destroyed a PS2 controller a while back. It’s just not satisfying. I mean, it is satisfying, for a few moments, until you realize that the only thing you’ve done is then destroyed something that wasn’t likely the root of the problem anyway.

So, the electrical system in the downstairs is fucked. It just doesn’t work. The kitchen lights? Fine. The bedroom? No problem. The dining room downstairs and the hallway to the garage simply don’t work. So, in a bout of pretty extreme frustration this morning, I kicked in one of the walls. Which, of course, wasn’t the wall I needed (though at the time I thought it was). So of course, now I’ve got a wall that I’ve wrecked. It requires basically a new piece of drywall to be put up, so it’s not like it’s terribly hard to fix, it’s just a pain in the ass, and didn’t do any good. And I ripped up my wrist on the drywall at the same time, so … yeah. Dumb, unproductive, not as cathartic as it should have been, and all in all, pointless.

I cut back the broken bits so that there’s a rectagular piece, which ends in joists. So, it can be fixed relatively easily, but again… just a pain in the ass.

And the electrics still don’t work.

Thursday, January 29th, 2004

In better news, I’ve got an interview for a new job Friday. Which is good news. In other better news, the weather’s been such that I’ve finally been able to finish the front door. So now, the unfinished door a year or so ago is now a really nice, sort of maple-y color, and almost ready to go. One more coat of varnish, maybe, if the weather stays good, but not really necessary. Gotta scrape down the windows, then it’ll be done. It’s really sharp looking. Also fixed a couple other little problems, like a glitchy light switch in the computer room, and a middle sink that had no drain connected to it. Little things, that make a big difference. Finally starting to feel like a house, in some respects. When the downstairs is done… man. It’ll be a whole new world.

Thursday, January 29th, 2004

Man, I’ve gotta tell you – this sense of being able to do nothing re: the wiring is probably one of the most frustrating things I’ve had to sit through with this house. It’s SO CLOSE to being done. SO CLOSE. But still so far away. There’s probably one more coat of spackle needed on the ceiling, to fix the water damage, as well as a couple spots that need filling (a light hole that’s too large, and a nick in the wall I put from moving a file cabinet)… but otherwise, it’s done. That, and the lights. And some filler in the floor. But if you were able to compress the amount of actual labor required to finish? Less than two hours worth of work. Maybe three. But it’s been like, a week at this state, and it’s not likely to change for at least another couple of days, since Jose’s completely disappeared… *sigh*

Man. Frustrating. I want to move downstairs, so that my housemate can get more space, which he’s been waiting for. I want this long, arduous two and a half year stint of constant transient feeling to be over. But it’ll be a few more weeks, I suppose.

*sigh*

Wednesday, January 28th, 2004

Gah. Spent about an hour this afternoon just futzing with the wiring downstairs. I think, now, I’ve got the junction boxes wired up properly, so that the four-way wiring for the hallway, and the 1/3-way wiring for the front porch light & dining room lights is proper… now the only problem is that neither system appears to be getting power. That could potentially be a *huge* problem, because if the line’s hosed, running a new line will mean, basically, ripping out a few walls. Which, of course, would make me a whole lot less than pleased. Not sure, honestly, what the deal is, but I’m hoping that the electrician will a.) show up tomorrow, and b.) be able to figure it out. I feel like I understand, now, more about how this BS is wired up, but I don’t know what’s wrong.

*sigh*

Sunday, January 25th, 2004

Got lights in the downstairs kitchen. Got lights in the downstairs bedroom. Missing functionality on one outlet box in the bedroom, and the hallway and living room lights & outlets aren’t working. Which blows. But the new breakers are in, which is good. Man. What a pain in the ass.

Tomorrow, though, more stuff gets better, hopefully, no stuff gets worse. We’ll see.

Friday, January 23rd, 2004

Man. It’s kinda weird. There are a lot of people I don’t keep in particularly good contact with. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s simply that I don’t. My cousin, friends from college, some friends from high school, whatever – I hang out with a fistful of people that I hang out with regularly, and that’s about it. Not that that’s a bad thing, and not that I’m in any way dissatisfied with the people I do hang out with. But it’s weird, how “out of sight, out of mind,” can work sometimes.

I mean… I dunno. I have friends who I had a *blast* living with in college, who I care deeply about, yet I don’t talk to them. I realize that must seem like I don’t *really* care deeply about them, then, but that’s not the case. At least, not in my mind. Is it that I don’t *want* to talk to them? Not really. But I’m just not much of a phone person. That’s a pretty big part of it – it just never feels like a real conversation, with these distended voices and such. I guess I’m so used to seeing people & reading their body language, as an integral part of understanding what they’re saying, that a phone conversation just feels incomplete.

Then again, part of me thinks, well, take what you can get, dammit! And there’s a lot to be said for that. It’d be nice to talk to the folks in Boston, or my cousin, or the random other friends I know that are spread out all over the place. But at the same time, they’re probably doing other stuff, too, whatever that is, and I’m not sure a phone call would be the best way they’d want to spend their time, either. But I dunno.

*shrugs*

Thursday, January 22nd, 2004

Man. Owning a house sure can be stressful. Dealing with an idiot contractor can really put a strain on the pleasure of simply having a place to live. Which sucks, of course. Right now, the contractors I’m dealing with are pretty good, and it’s a great relief to be dealing with them, instead of Mike, unreliable jackass that he is. So, I suppose I should be less stressed. I mean, if the house isn’t leaking come the time we test how sealed up it is, and the downstairs gets finished up, it shouldn’t be too bad. All that’s left is figuring out how to wire two outlets, and inserting a fistful of new breakers, sanding some stuff, a little gap sealing in the floor, and fixing the water damage in the bedroom.

Shouldn’t be more than another $200 or so, at the worst, I hope. Then, after that, for the first time in more than two and a quarter years, there won’t be anyone working on the house at all. No contractors, no obligations to fix stuff to simply make it work, nothing. Everything will then be up to us, and anything that gets fixed further will be completely unrelated to other stuff on the house. Good gravy, I can’t wait ’till that day. It’s just been such a long, stressful process. Sure, I’d love to see the upstairs come to fruition at some point, but I guess another part of me knows that day’s a ways away. Stripping the upstairs walls, rewiring the lighting, and then putting up new drywall’s not a tremendous amount of work, all things considered, but despite the unfinished state of the upstairs, I think I could use a break from fixing things for a while.

Maybe once I get a job, I can start paying off the home equity loan, and start saving up for repairs to the upstairs. Just so crazy. Glad that the door’s finally closed with Mike, that I have some contractors who I actually *like* dealing with, in Jose Rodriguez & Co., and knowing that it’s not going to be too much longer before things are actually done downstairs.

Man, it’s been a long couple years.

Wednesday, January 21st, 2004

Mike Mohsini is easily one of the hardest to contact, least reliable people I’ve ever dealt with. I can’t trust anything he says. It’s impossible to know when he’s bullshitting, and when he’s telling the truth, except for the fact that he never tells the truth, when it comes to dates, times, and the amount of effort he’s going to put into his work. I can’t possibly recommend him to anyone, for anything, as a contractor.

seppo

Monday, January 19th, 2004

Jiminy Christmas. How glad I am to be out of college. That is, how glad I am to be away from MIT. Last weekend was the Mystery Hunt, which is bascially a weekend long puzzle solving marathon, that consists of everything from engineering puzzles, to ID’ing pop music, and doing something crazy with it to get answers to other puzzles, and zany combinations of all sorts of stuff. Should be tons of fun. Was tons of fun, for the most part, except for some poorly designed puzzles.

But my god, how one person can nearly destroy an experience. We held the West Coast contingent here, and maybe twenty-ish people showed up. A bunch of those people were good friends, and people that I really love working with. A few of the people were new to me, or relatively new to me, and were a blast to work with, as well. A few people rubbed me a little wrong, but nothing big, and no big shakes. But oh, there’s always one that just makes you want to run them through a paper shredder.

In this case, it was a girl I’d never met before – someone who was a friend of a friend, or whatever. There’s a particular “type” at MIT – someone who I’ve always described as the kind of person that’s like, “LOOK HOW FUCKED UP I AM!!!” Eingy put it better when she changed that to “LOOK HOW COUNTERCULTURE I AM!!!” which actually makes more sense, in context.

But regardless of how you phrase it, the basic point is that it’s the type of person who has to be involved in every conversation, and has to make a point every time they’re involved, whether the point’s been made already or not. The kind of person that has to “wow” you with their “knowledge” at every opportunity, who talks in an elevated speaking voice all the time, and has pronounced mannerisms that they think are endearing or something but just irritate the living fuck out of you instead.

We had one like that, and she stayed from the fucking start, right up past the fucking finish, and every time she opened her mouth, I wanted to grab her by the upper and lower jaw, and forcibly turn her inside out.

It’s funny how one person can wreck an experience. Or nearly wreck it, at any rate. I mean, it’s just one of those things where you want to be inviting, welcome everyone in, let them kick their feet up, and relax, but then this one stupid bitch basically makes you want to kick everyone out of the house, and light them on fire. Takes you from the inviting, relaxed host, to the asshole who yells at you to GET THE LIVING FUCK OUT OF MY HOUSE!

Which pisses me off, because I really liked everyone else. Literally. Everyone else. I *really* liked a bunch of the people that came over. But one person can change a mood quickly, and I’ll be good god damned if she EVER sets a foot in my house again.

Saturday, January 17th, 2004

Fuck you, George W., you rotten god damned bastard. A recess appointment for Charles Pickering on the observance of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday? You miserable fuck. I hope you fucking die.