It’s been over two months since my last post but I haven’t given up on blogging, I’ve just been distracted. It seems it’s important, like exercise, to really stick with blogging, every day, or else the gaps just get longer and longer.
But among the various negatives weighing on me at least one, hence my title, will soon be over – the nightmare of this election with the most abhorrent (Trump, of course) candidate in my lifetime. Trump makes politics so disgusting I’d explode if I did any ranting (like in some of my earlier posts) if I even made any comments. It’s impossible to express as much outrage as he deserves. But the very sad (and hugely depressing to me) part is that a big portion of the U.S. will vote for him, clear proof that a substantial portion of this country wants to end democracy and install a madman dictator. But don’t get me started or I might break my keyboard.
Not only has my blogging suffered but almost all the other bits have fallen apart. I keep kicking myself because I’m actually doing what I swore I wouldn’t and that is regain some of my weight loss. At each new “record” (in the wrong direction, up) I swear again I’ll start TODAY reversing it, but thus far haven’t been able to actually follow through. While my eating is not great the real problem is lack of exercise. Having to drive to a gym is just not the same as having the exercise equipment in my house, available at any time. Plus I found, before, when I got hungry instead of eating I could work out – now, faced with drive to gym, I just snack. Bad, I know. My fault, no excuses. The real question is when I turn it around.
For a while I was posting progress on my new found effort to do strength training, culminating in my 1,000,000 lbs post. Shortly after that in attempting to update my Office 365, poof, something went wrong and my spreadsheets disappeared. Ugh. While I could probably fix it, stuff like that (proving again, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it – I hate “routime” updates because sooner or later they break something that was working fine). Not having the numbers and analysis and charts really destroys much of my motivation.
But all this is still just excuses – I could do better if I really wanted to.
Meanwhile, for a couple of weeks, I thought some real work (instead of fake exercise) would do the trick. I had a 20 cubic yard dumpster sitting in the driveway of my mother’s (now my) house and I started, with a real bang, the long ordeal of cleaning out this house. That was hard work, plenty of sweating with that. Well today I got the report from the dumpster service and sure enough I exceeded the contract weight limit, all of 3.5tons, aka, 7000lbs. I was doing more than that (often more than twice) in a single gym session, but I can assure you it was way more work than moving some iron on gym machines (and I moved, as in tossed out, a remarkable amount of iron junk, my dad saved everything he ever encountered).
It’s a weird experience cleaning out your parents house. They weren’t exactly hoarders but they did save everything as long as they had more space to fill. When my dad died my mother wasn’t fit enough to clean out very much. Then she became fairly physically limited and her junk began to accumulate. But it was amazing all the stuff I threw out. I told my counselor it was strange and sad as it felt like I was throwing out lives. Of course both my parents are now dead, what difference does a bunch of their stuff matter. They even hoarded a bunch of stuff from my childhood (lots of busted and worn out toys). I assume they thought I’d want them (whatever for!). So at least some of the trash in the dumpster was my trash.
And finally, #GBR. Yes, I know this isn’t Twitter (the whole fascination with hashtags is fairly silly to me). For those uninitiated GBR stands for Go Big Red, Big Red otherwise being known as the Huskers (aka Cornhuskers, aka University of Nebraska sports teams). Amazingly the Huskers have accumulated a 7-0 record for first time since 2001. So nice guy Mike Riley is gradually making believers of all of Blowpini’s (Bo Pelini, happily the former coach and a guy approaching Trump’s level of nastiness and lack of self control and narcissism) fans. Riley seems to actually be able to figure out what’s happening in the game, while it’s happening, and make adjustments (hence the Huskers having such good 4th quarters) whereas Pelini had to wait to Tuesday and watch the tape to figure out how he’d screwed up.
So at least one time the good guy is winning and the bad guy lost; let’s hope that carries through for the election.
And, btw, had a bit of strange and unexpected adventure. My mother owned property and also some mineral rights in Oklahoma that I’m trying to figure out the legal requirements to transfer through her estate. That almost got me arrested down in Canadian County Oklahoma where a typical southern sheriff type had to strut his stuff and do his macho thing with I absentmindely had a pocket knife in my pocket trying to enter a courthouse (I literally didn’t even know I had it). Anyway I survived that, learned what a property abstract was, and so now I’m a rancher (actually a tenant rancher does all the work, but I have the dirt where the poor forage grows for some cattle and a donkey). And I’m really ambivalent because there is also oil and then slightly less dirty natural gas, and, hurrah, a wind turbine, so I’ve got a play in old energy and clean energy. Never thought I’d be involved in such stuff. And I really got a laugh reading that the governor of Oklahoma decided a day of prayer was needed for the oil industry since the reduced world prices has hurt Oklahoma’s revenues (and mine). Right, I’m sure the almighty, even if it existed, would have Oklahoma’s reduced oil taxes top of his agenda with much of the world in flames with horrible stuff going on.
One of the places I find Trump most clueless (and it’s really hard to narrow it down even to just 100 incredibly stupid things he believes) is his stupid pandering about coal. Yep, coal is in trouble and big coal companies (due to stupid financial management, not EPA) are going broke and miners are losing their jobs.
DUH, stupid. Check out North Dakota. Coal isn’t being destroyed by EPA, or even alternative energy. It’s fracking (which of course Trump also loves). Fracking is so successful (go check out my posts about vacation to North Dakota) that the U.S. is awash in both oil and especially natural gas. Hard-nosed business executives (hardly bleeding heart environmentalists) at electricity generating companies are massively switching to natural gas (much bigger shift that green energy). It’s convenient (easier to manage, smaller plants closer to demand, fast to throttle) and now cheaper and a bit cleaner. It’s called the market, Donald, you stupid idiot. EPA didn’t do it, North Dakota and Saudi Arabia did (the Saudis got really scared when oil interests here started lobbying to allow exports again, not only was the U.S. on a path to energy independence (dirty energy) it was on a path to becoming an exporter – Saudi sends their kids to bizschool and can do the math, most fracking projects are highly leveraged and fracking is not profitable at lower prices, so Saudis drove down the world oil price to bankrupt South Dakota and Oklahoma frackers).
Coal just got caught in the crossfire of nothing but pure economics and market forces.
Oh, and btw, yeah, China is running a hoax about climate change. They managed to do a 180 and instead of building a new coal plant a week decided to get a monopoly over green energy. So bye-bye steadily increasing exports of coal. And worse, hello, to much lower prices for green energy as the world just passed a milestone that production capacity (not yet installed capacity) for green energy now exceeds dirty energy. Amazing what market forces can do.
Coal is dead and Trump can’t do anything about it except con a bunch of stupid miners into telling them what they want to hear. If Trump actually believes a word of what he said then Wharton should take his MBA back for totally misunderstanding microeconomics. Oh wait, he’s proved that time and time again already with his other incredibly bad business ventures. I hope Wharton is suitably impressed at their totally ignorant graduate, just glad it wasn’t Sloan.
So maybe I’ll get an energy boost if this country gets sane enough to not put Putin’s puppet and wannabe dictator into a job that he won’t even have the attention span to do as badly as he claims he wants to do. Can’t wait.