November 24th, 2006


Thanksgiving - part 1

Thanksgiving morning, woke up at 8:30AM, loiunged about in the bed, Selene sleeping quietly beside me, the morning sun streaming through the trees into the bedroom, brilliant blue skies welcoming this special day. I got up out of bed and put on shorts and a loose long sleeve swaeater/shirt. Today was valves day, something I meant to do over two months ago but had to wait until the backordered motorized valve actuaters (MVAs) arrived. I picked those up yesterday, four for $260; these are seriously pricey devices that are used to create multiple heating zones. The house has two main hot water pump zones but I needed to split the entryway and upstairs office area from the studio to permit heating up the office significantly so that our cold intolerant housemate will stop whining about being cold. Anything lower than 76F feels cold to him. The poor guy has an undiagnosed medical problem, and I am not going to heat up the entire house to that temperature, hence the extra zoning to confine the heating (only to 73F) to the office area where he works in the morning. This poor guy wears a full length down coat and a head warmer at 72F!

Today was family thanksgiving, and we were expecting 10 people to arrive (a much smaller group than last year's 22 folks), so Selene prepared and cooked while I valved. I had only a few hours to get this done since company was expected to arrive by 1PM.  The MVAs require a separate 24V transformer, so I cannabalized an old defunct sprinkler controller and extracted its still function transformer. Mounting it inside the TACO zone controller box, I rewired the two thermostat circuits to intrdouce a third one. The studio 'stat is now powered by the second transformer to send power to the MVAs. They in turn have a switch which actuates when the vavles open up, and that switch is now connected to the  zone controller's relay circuit. This is a good example of failsoft design. Unless the valves open, to ensure the water circuit is also open, the heater is not turned on.

During the valving work I helped Selene as needed, and I finished the installation just as the first relatives arrived.

[food pornin part 2]


Do spammers think?

I am truly amazed by the whacky spam. A piece of noxious spam squeezed through the spamcop filters, telling me I have been approved for a sizeable home loan, but along with te spam there is the following clincher quote that pretty much should sound alarms in the most gullible of people. Seriously, if ayone follows up on this spam having read that quote surely deserves to be taken...

The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made.           -Groucho Marx (1890-1977)