Sunday, March 29, 2009

X-Treme Impact Church

Just noticed this place near our neighborhood.
I refuse to do any research to find out more about their beliefs.
Highly doubt anything they might say could elicit a positive response from me, and ridiculing a religion isn't nice.
So I'm keeping quiet.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Recipe For Disaster

First, get yourself some little jars that can seal up tight--these are probably around 4 ounces.
Next, get someone to smuggle banned Belgian schnapps into the US for you.
160 proof works best. Wasn't told the name--sorry I can't supply this important info. Just mix Everclear with a little Hawaiian Punch or something--it won't matter.
Cut apples into little chunks and put them in the jars.
Add the illegal schnapps.
Put them in your refrigerator to soak for 24-48 hours. All the alcohol goes into the fruit while making it soft.
Use rubber bands to attach toothpicks to the jars for easy snacking.
Hand them out freely in a small-town rock/hick bar.

The very first apple chunk will make your entire mouth numb.
Every one after that detaches an important part of your brain while raising your body temp to the redline.
I ate three and tried to pick a fight with some local douche.
The last fight I started was well over 30 years ago, so yeah--not my proudest moment.

But I would try it again, but only at home if I was having trouble sleeping (or blogging).
Or had a toothache.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Aggiemobile

What Coldplay is to rock music, the Aggiemobile is to performance bikes.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Mr. Fix It 2

This was last week's big project.
Cleaning the optical pathways on half of the bands rear lights.
They have seen a few years of use in smoky nasty clubs plus a few more years of dusty garage storage, resulting in major loss of light compared to when they were new.

It required the removal of 1 large wingscrew and washer, 5 top access screws, 3 bolts to remove the color wheel module, 2 thumbscrews to take off the lamp access panel, 2 bolts to remove the color wheel from it's stepper motor shaft, and one each thumbscrew and nut/bolt set for the adjustable lens module, for a total of 15 Philips™ head actuations.

The adjustable lens (already removed in the photo) needed cleaning on both sides, as did the other small lens pointed at in the color wheel section.
The wheel itself has seven colored glass elements that also need years of schmutz scrubbed off of both sides.
That's a total of 18 lens cleanings per fixture.

I was also able to use the brush attachment on our ElectroLux canister vacuum to get most of the dust buildup off the halogen lamp's cooling fan.

The *Coil is what failed in my personal unit--I finally found the broken solder joint after making the mental connection with the same part breaking loose inside Steve's monitor speaker's crossover network.
Manufacturers apparently don't make allowances for the inertia of heavier parts in equipment that might get dropped or slammed around--I keep finding big heavy coils like this "secured" using one or 2 cable ties and soldered directly to the circuit board (the break-point) instead of being located separately with a wiring harness or just bolted down solidly.
If you have sound or light road-gear that has failed, check the solder joints of your coils first--it's a proven weak point.

With 9 lenses/gels that have 2 sides each per unit, in this Mr. Fix It episode I took care of 6 light fixtures for 108 total lens cleanings and 90 screws/bolts taken out and put back in.
Correctly, I might add.

There are three more of these lights that need service, and since the time per fixture is now under 20 minutes due to experience I can knock them out in an hour if there aren't any other issues that need my attention.
Which means that one of the next three has some major problem that adds a few trips to part suppliers and lots of TLC.
Because nothing is ever easy...

Now you know why I added a type-arrow to my aspirin bottle.

What's the deal with a nightlight plugged into the GFI outlet, you ask?
Ground Fault Interruptor outlets are mandated in the USA for all new construction/replacement near water like my kitchen sink seen here.
They can save your life, but will trip at the slightest provocation sometimes so I use the nightlight to verify that my AC power is still active whenever I'm working on suspect gear.
Same with battery chargers in this outlet--sometimes the GFI trips off when plugging-in so I like to have a visual confirmation that the AC is on.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Mr. Fix It

The show must go on.
So if something breaks, it falls on me to get it working again.
Sometimes I use my faith-healing powers--I open whatever is busted and touch things inside it. This works 90% of the time--seriously!

On this occasion the guitarist's main effects pedal had a footswitch come apart, and I had to tear it all the way apart to put the switch back together.
I still had time left on our break to piss.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

They Eat Mayo In Korea?

One of several reasons I never buy food at Big Lots, Dollar Tree, etc.

We forgot to check the label to see if it had Fish Head Extract.

Monday, March 02, 2009

The CIG to PBG

What cracked me up about this book I found at Borders was the old joke about bass players not being smart enough to master 6 strings and playing chords, so they settle for 4 strings and play one at a time...just to meet girls.
Or the other joke that you have to be an idiot to want to play bass--most bassists end up there by sucking at everything else.

Q: How many bass players does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
A: Nobody knows--bass players are so lazy they would rather just sit in the dark.

A: Just one, but you have to wait until he steals a lightbulb.
And some toilet paper while he's at it.

A: Just one, but a guitar player showed him how.

A: "Fuck that--it's the crew's job".

A: 3

A: Back in 1985 it's rumored that a bass player did it all by himself, but then had to visit the ER to get the bulb removed from his ass.

A: The only one who ever tried it knocked the lamp over, then threw up on it, starting a fire.
New band policy dictates that the bassist isn't allowed anywhere near electrical devices without supervision.

A: "Screw in a lightbulb? That sounds hard. I have trouble screwing in a Cadillac!"

I can keep this up for days...and only one of them is old material.
I'm even funnier in-person.

What's great about this book cover is the placement of the third (ring) finger--when slopped-over the fret like that you're guaranteed to have a dead note that doesn't ring for shit.

And before anyone gets their panties in a bunch, I'd like to point out that while I was known as a lead guitarist I have always been a bassist, too.
Just waiting for Craig'sList to cough-up a Fender Squier Jazz Bass that's got crazy sustain and a good price so I can hit the stage again with a side-gig on weeknights.
I miss playing for people, but all of the BS associated with playing guitar professionally (like effects pedals and endless varieties of tones and distortion levels) made 6-string art more of a chore than a joy.
I yearn for the simplicity of finding one great instrument and matching it to the perfect amp, then just concentrating on tone and hitting the right notes at the right time while failing to look cool.