ideal sunday

sipping bourbon, watching the rain, listening to jazz.

I found out the city: Royse City, Texas. Most likely I’ll look for housing in nearby Rockwall, TX.

Successfully got rid of my tonneau cover on Friday. Seeing the size of the lake near Rockwall, I’m no longer sure I want a kayak. I might actually want a sail boat or something bigger. Not sure if I want to proceed with the lumber rack plan or not. I wanted to mount lights to the rack, and that’s pretty much impossible without it, so I’ll have to think about it.

this is the recipe I improvised from

Mongolian Beef Recipe, An “Authentic” version

So marinating the beef in 1 tsp of oil, 1 tsp of soy sauce, and 1 tbsp of corn starch didn’t work out. That doesn’t make a marinade, that makes a brick. I was doubling the marinade for twice the amount of beef, I used 1 tsp of roasted sesame oil, 1 tsp of EVOO, 1 tbsp of cornstarch (not sure why), and 2 cups of low sodium soy sauce. Marinated for about 2 hours – prep took longer than I thought, plus I was also prepping veggies for a stew.

I dredged half the meat in more corn starch, and the other with panko, which was way better. I cut the meat a little thicker than a 1/4 inch, and even with more than a minute per side deep frying, the result was still pretty rare. Next time I’d opt for thinner cuts and longer cooking time if I’m serving guests. For me it was fine.

I made the sauce before cooking the meat, because I put in a lot of vegetable mass, and wanted to be able to cook the onions down. Even with my electric stove, I didn’t have any problem filling the wok with meat to fry, the oil retained plenty of heat.

possibly the second to last GSA sale today.

we’re scheduled to have another on 12/5/18, but it’s possible there could be another before the end of the year. Only supposed to have regular auctions through the end of December, and January will be a month of packing, moving, and discarding.

Pretty small GSA sale, only ran about 80 units, approx. half of normal. So it was a lot less crazy, and I was able to run all the units myself without any help, or even any running. Additionally, the IT end went smoothly and the auction was pretty successful, even with a lower turn out than normal.

Some people try to re-invent the wheel, and fail. Like my manager. I don’t understand. We have ways of doing things because they produce consistent quality results. If you skip steps, the process fails. Sure, you can override my advice, but it’s just a waste of time and money. I’d think he’d learn, but nope.

I’m looking forward to a fresh start in Texas. I really hope we can find train-able employees. It’s super frustrating to tell someone not to do something, and then find them doing it (again) a couple weeks later. No, that’s STILL NOT OK.

Went out the past couple fridays with coworkers. Trying to party down with the Stockton crew before we disband, but it was a better plan than I originally realized, as people are finding new jobs and leaving pretty rapidly. While I’d like to expand the friday night event to more employees, the group is already shrinking quite a bit, and it doesn’t look like we’re going to hire any body, so now some people have 3 or 4 jobs instead of the usual 2.

I made “chinese food” on Sunday night

mongolian beef. Something made up in the US, doesn’t actually exist in China. Improvised based on a recipe. 12/10 Would pay money for / make again.

I put additional onions in, chopped some ginger instead of grating it, and put in a ghost pepper in addition to the listed two dried chilis. and a whole head of garlic instead of a couple cloves. The heat was sublime, balanced by brown sugar, caramelized onions, and soy sauce.

this is for my memory

so the next day, after my last post, we had a rumor control meeting where the buck was passed to our HR director, in a meeting to come the following week, and separately, I found out some important details and got an offer directly from one of the owners.

the next week, at that meeting, said HR director confirmed the rumors are true, Stockton location is closing, and everyone could get letters of recommendation, some people might get offers to continue, will meet with everyone individually, etc. So at my turn, her offer is a little different from the original pitch, and I point out some discrepancies. She says she’ll straighten it out, and she does – turns out her briefing was a little incomplete, and my version was verified.

I’ve mostly given up on moving

I still look for a new place, but there’s just so much uncertainty now. I want to move to a cheaper place that allows pets, and use the difference in rent to support that, but if I end up staying in Stockton long term, I think I’d rather stay where I am and get a pet when the garnishment ends.

I moved the money I’ve been holding for moving back into my high growth savings account, now at 2.05%, minus $500 which I sent to my investment account to try and make a positive out of the low market position. I increased my AMD shares from 10 to 39.

I’ve heard from two co-workers that the plan for opening the Dallas location involves closing the Stockton location. Otherwise, that rumor is unsubstantiated. The website, I noticed yesterday, has been updated, announcing the Dallas location will open in the first quarter of 2019 & that key personnel will be heading the Dallas location from Stockton. I have previously under-estimated their time tables, but at this point I’m feeling like I’m not key personnel, and will be laid off / fired in the near future.

I’ve honestly been taken care of so far. I’d really like a heads up if I’m going to be asked to move or fired / whatever with 3 months notice, but that window appears to have run out.

mixed success with truck repair plan

I did a shoddy job repairing my FL wheel speed sensor harness years ago. It was supposed to be a temporary fix, but it kept working so I left it. I did end up tearing it again, but I just repeated the old shit. Fast forward to a couple months ago, my ABS light is coming on and going off again while driving, mostly while hitting bumps or turning. Carried my scanner with me for awhile, pulled the codes while it happened, turns out the FL wheel speed sensor signal is intermittently disappearing. As time progresses, the light comes on and stays on for longer periods of time, until I actually have to wiggle the harness to affect a change. I also believe this hub might have been original. This is relevant since the FR hub went bad a couple years ago. On my truck, the ABS wheel speed sensor, wheel bearing, and hub comes as an assembly, which bolts into the knuckle. It’s possible to buy just the sensor, but it requires taking the hub off the vehicle, and the whole assembly is only $114, for the premium quality unit.

I bought new harness pigtails, for both the wheel speed sensor harness connector (a pigtail is a connector with lengths of wire pre-attached), and the vehicle harness, so that I could create a high quality extension harness that plugs into the existing factory connections, and it would be water tight and pretty. However, when I installed a new hub last night, the new part had a longer harness, and the sub-extension harness creation was unnecessary. AND I bought two of everything, so I can fabricate extension harnesses for both sides. I did the same shoddy job on the right side, but I routed it better, and it hasn’t broken again yet, but I just did that one a couple years ago. I may end up making the extension harnesses eventually or using the parts to better fix the FR, since the FL is now all factory style connections. For clarity, I used butt connectors to splice the harness together that were both unprotected from the elements, and routed in such a way that the connections moved and caused fatigue.

Still trying to track down some steering issues, but I noticed that my front shock bushings are so worn they’re mostly missing, and my front sway bar link bushings are trashed, so I ordered some today to be installed next week-ish.

While my truck was on the rack I had further chances to try and condemn my pitman and idler arms, but it really doesn’t seem like they’re moving erratically to me. The bushings on my FL lower control arm are cracked, and that could be where the clunk I’m hearing is coming from. That control arm is original – since the lift kit install. The steering play has got to be in the pitman, idler arms, or the FL lower control arm (or some combination), assuming the parts I’ve replaced in the past 4 years haven’t suddenly gone bad. Not that I didn’t inspect everything. I didn’t detect any play or see any signs of wear or defects in the parts I’ve already replaced.

It sucks to quickly diagnose and identify faults all day on cars only to be stumped by your daily driver. It doesn’t look like I’m going to be hiring another mechanic any time soon. I have been training the facilities guy on stuff, but I don’t 100% trust him, and don’t want to involve him on my own vehicle. Sooner or later I’m going to end up paying someone else to figure this out.

oh and

last night my total investment account gain was about $70 where it had been about $800 just a couple months ago. I heard on the news that the markets rallied today after the stunning reset on wednesday, but it seems more like a slight correction to the reset than an actual rally. My total gain is now $180. I diversified my portfolio, which diversified my loss!

Glad today is over

Even though I didn’t win any money in mega millions. GSA sale today, went off with a few hitches. Nothing I could do on my end – I was ready to go, but there were some remote technical issues that delayed the start of the auction by about 30 mins. All the cars and trucks in the ware house are running, everyone’s standing around the podiums ready to bid, and then the cars came up on screen in the wrong order. So someone off-site deleted the entire auction… it was eventually resolved. A lot of running back and forth, jump starting cars that didn’t need to be jumped two days ago, unlocked two cars that had the keys locked inside by some asshole. Typical GSA shit really. Didn’t lose my temper, that’s a plus.

Getting ready for the first auction of the morning, I was walking across the warehouse to turn some lights on for the dealers looking at cars. I wasn’t paying complete attention to the ground, and I walked right into a ball hitch sticking out of a receiver on a jeep. It was one of those weird things that probably would’ve broken some peoples’ leg, and really should have hurt a lot, but I didn’t even feel it, at first. After 10 minutes my hip and ankle starting hurting a lot (I took the hitch to my right shin) so I took some advil, and I’ve been taking it every 4-6 hours since. So I ran some, but not as much as I have for some of the other GSA sales. Not because I was in pain; I didn’t want to hurt myself and took it easy.

Powerball is above 500 million, so I bought 5 numbers. I don’t mind losing if no one wins. Someone is Stockton got 5 of 6 on mega millions, I got 1 of 6 🙁

Really disappointed with Chase Chevrolet. I ordered over 1200 dollars of parts for the GSA sale ten days ago, and they dropped the ball, didn’t order the parts, and they didn’t get delivered until an hour after the GSA sale. I’m sure we sold those parts for 3-4 times cost, and now we’re going to have to return some stuff. Another headache, tomorrow! Apparently I need to treat Chase like children.