Archive for 2005

What the ????

imageLast night I went to Taco Bell to get our dinner. I go two combos and a soft taco for Connor. I must have won the grand prize on that visit: A lifetime supply of Taco sauce. I thought the bag felt heavy but 38 packs of mild sauce?

Not funny ha, ha. Funny queer.

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What’s Next For The N.C. Lottery?

The Lottery was signed into law yesterday. Now I’m gonna get rich quick.

WRAL.com – News – What’s Next For The N.C. Lottery?

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The Seller’s Response

It appears the seller has agreed to have everything fixed that was disclosed in the Inspection Summary and a Structural Engineer is scheduled to go out later this week to look at the questionable foundation columns. The seller states that he had the house inspected at the time he purchased it and the county had to inspect it the first time the house was sold and the columns and girders presented no problems either time.

As long as I can get a statement from an Engineer proclaiming the foundation safe then we’ve bought a house. The underwriting mortgage company called me today and the rate’s been set so all that’s left is the repairs and the closing. Looks like we’re moving in a month.

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Inspection Day

imageNow I know why thorough inspections are required when buying a house. One of the first things I found looking around the yard were three of these black and yellow Argiope spiders (an orb web spider). They were huge but didn’t even scare my niece’s, Hannah and Skylar, because they looked so peaceful hanging out in their cool webs. They may have been the best thing I saw yesterday. From there it kinda went down hill and got discouraging.

imageWe found several little things like this broken toilet tank, excessively hot water (140 degrees) and leaky outside water spickets. None of these things are really big or expensive problems for the seller to take care of. In fact, under the terms of the purchase contract they don’t have to repair such small things unless all repairs exceed $1500. But unfortunately not everything was a small problem.

imageThey also had a few mid-range, somewhat expensive problems to address with the air conditioners. The downstairs air condenser had a rusted drip pan – no biggie. But the upstairs condenser had a broken PVC drain pipe thanks to someone throwing luggage on it when they used the condenser access area as storage. Yikes. The big problem is the water leaking from the broken pipe overflowed the drip pan which saturated the sub-flooring. Luckily it hadn’t soaked through to the ceiling below. We brought this to seller’s attention immediately so he could get it fixed quick.

imageBut the real problem, and possible show-stopper, is the foundation. The first time we looked at the house my dad noticed the floor seemed to sink towards the center of the house. I couldn’t tell very much but did notice it felt like I was waking down hill in the entrance foyer. But according to Don, my inspector, this was just “the tip of the iceburg.” As he was describing the problem I quickly recalled from my experience framing houses during college that a floor girder must be located in the center 1/3 of a foundation support column.

As you can tell by this photo one girder of this house is clearly located on the right 1/3 of the support column and is even hanging off a little bit. Why is this a big issue? Because as the house settles the support column will settle to one side creating dips in the floor system as the floor joists bow. And it’s already starting.

So now we have to get a structural engineer to look at it. If he recommends fixing it then the seller will need to hire Ram Jack or some other foundation specialists to make the repair by setting another column. That won’t be cheap and it will be interesting to see if they’ll actually pay for it or back out of the sale. They might as well fix it because any future inspector is going to find the same problem.

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More pics of the house.

Here are a few more pictures of the place we’ll call home at the end of next month. There’s a lot of painting and wallpaper removal to take care of. I might even take off the last week of September to get it all done if I can squeeze in the time between projects at work. Right now I’m slammed on all fronts. But there is more good news this week… Amy got a job! She starts Monday in the claims department of an insurance company I can’t think of the name of right now.

Kitchen, Living Room:

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We bought a house!

imageIt’s been 10 days since my last entry because I have been extremely busy this month, just like in July. Our offer on this house in the town of Wendell was accepted last night. I searched all over the Internet and discovered you can buy A LOT more house for your money outside of Raleigh/Cary/Apex. In short, once the deal goes through on this property I will have saved almost $60K over any comparable house I’ve seen in Raleigh.

We’ll have half an acre of yard and 2200 square feet of living space. The first floor has three bedrooms, two full bathrooms, kitchen, living room and dining room. The upstairs has two 15×16 bonus rooms and a full bathroom. It’s located about 10 minutes from where Dillon Supply will be located after the move in December (so I’ll be just as close to work as I am now). The best part is that there will be a lot of yard space between us and our neighbors, something unheard of in Raleigh subdivisions.

It’s not a done deal but if the contract goes through we’ll be closing on September 23rd (one day before Connor’s birthday). I told Amy that once we move it’s the last time we’re going to do it for many years. Later we can add a kid or two to this house and still have enough room to keep our sanity. I just don’t know how I’m going to afford to furnish it.


July Recap

imageThis month was hotter and busier than any I can remember. At work, at home, even at my parents house something was going on all the time. We started off by taking Connor to see fireworks for the first time. He jumped straight into Amy’s lap when he heard the first explosion and didn’t get out until they were over. But he liked them. And I managed to get out of the fairground parking in under 45 minutes so I didn’t mind it much either.

The weekend following the 4th we threw my mom a surprise birthday party. Amy and Mary Kay organized it and had well over 50 people there. When mom walked around her house into the back yard she was genuinely surprised. It was a well kept secret. Then later that week I had a Colonoscopy.

The next weekend I lost my wedding ring in the deep end of a diving pool. I noticed it missing from my hand that night after we got home. I went straight back the following morning but despite all my self-proclaimed genius I did not bring a snorkel, goggles – nothin’. But I did spot the ring on the bottom.

First Amy dove to try to get it. She felt around on the bottom but couldn’t grab it. I watched it drift around on the bottom for about ten minutes and told Amy to go get a mask. The trip took her about thirty minutes. During that time a bunch of other people got in the pool and stirred the water. I lost site of the ring and never saw it again. I wished I had never seen it on the bottom to begin with.

imageLater on in the month Connor took a couple of trips to Pullen Park to ride the choo-choo, boats and merry-go-round. Last weekend when we went I saw a guy I know on the choo-choo with his daughter, Ava. Dawson Roark, if I remember correctly. The last time I saw him was last year in St. Louis at the Prophet21 convention. So we talked about work and P21 for around thirty minutes.

Speaking of work; this month Dillon Supply officially moved the forklift division across the street in downtown Raleigh so I turned up a new segment of our wide area network. Very smoothly if I might add – 1 minute 45 seconds total down time on the core router; a Cisco 3745 which now supports three T1 circuits (two are bonded) and a 45Mbps DS3. Tomorrow morning I’m installing the first component of our new storage area network, a 1TB NetApp FAS3000.

It’s been a helluva month.

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When a hoax is not a joke.

This is a legitimate, safe trend started by the East Anglian Ambulance Service:

Paramedics will turn to a victim’s cell phone for clues to that person’s
identity. You can make their job much easier with a simple idea that they
are trying to get everyone to adopt: ICE.

ICE stands for In Case of Emergency. If you add an entry in the contacts
list in your cell phone under ICE, with the name and phone no. of the
person that the emergency services should call on your behalf, you can save
them a lot of time and have your loved ones contacted quickly. It only
takes a few moments of your time to do.

Paramedics know what ICE means and they look for it immediately. ICE your
cell phone NOW!

Then some narrow minded idiot tried to ruin a good thing.

Quickly following on the heels of advisories to add “ICE” entries to mobile phones were hoax warnings that doing so would trigger premium charges thanks to malicious text messages or viruses randomly sent to phones to scan for such entries:

“To all those who received a copy of the e-mail recommending that the word ICE be added to their phones address book (In case of emergency contact). I can not say for sure that information I have received this morning is legitimate, but better to warn you all.

I am very sorry to report that some small minded idiot has created a text message that is being sent out randomly to mobile phone users, this text has a programme included that searches your phones address book for the word “ICE” or “I.C.E” and if found, you are charged for a premium rate message.”

The instigator tried to turn ICE contacts into a hoax.

Matt Ware, spokesman for the East Anglian Ambulance Service, asked people to ignore the hoax email.

“I have been inundated with emails and phone calls from people worried that, having put ICE into their mobiles, they are now going to be charged for the privilege,” he added.

“We would like to assure people that that’s not the case. Whoever began this second email chain is obviously a malicious person with way too much time on their hands.”

The bottom line:

No one can send a text message to anything but your cell phone number. A text message cannot do a reverse lookup for a contact name in your address book. It’s safe to add an ICE contact to your cell phone.

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WRAL.com – News – Alabama Lawmakers Ask Residents To Avoid Aruba

WRAL.com – News – Alabama Lawmakers Ask Residents To Avoid Aruba

This is just stupid. I would go to Aruba tomorrow if I had the chance just to spit in the face of Alabama “law makers.” Hey, while we’re at it let’s boycott travel to every place in America an over-hyped, unsolved disappearance occurs. Especially the ones pounded in our face by the media that involve pretty white women.

The hipocracy is that if this were a 18-year-old black girl that disappeared in Alabama you wouldn’t have heard two words about it.

So Alabama, let’s convict someone in Aruba for the media, guilty or not. That’ll teach ’em. Stalling a prosecution because of lack of evidence, the nerve. Just hang ’em – go on – git!

An to Mr. and Mrs. Holloway, the media frenzy instigators: your daughter is dead and the crime was well covered. Get home and recover. Don’t worry there’s plenty of money in a made for TV movie later that will certainly adversely effect Aruban tourism for you. Or possibly not. I’ve recently heard that famous crime scenes have become quite popular with tourists.

By the way idiots – Aruba didn’t kill Natalee Holloway, someone in Aruba MIGHT HAVE. For all we know she drank her self into a coma on the beach and washed out sea when the tide came in. Hey, it happens.

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Microsoft to Announce Longhorn Name: Windows Vista

Microsoft to Announce Longhorn Name: Windows Vista

Vista: Noun
1 – A view, especially a splendid view from a high position.
2 – A possible future action or event that you can imagine.

My interpretation: Looking down from the top of their totem pole Microsoft wants you to imagine that one day they’ll introduce a secure operating system that’s actually innovative.

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