Baboon Pirates

Scribbles and Scrawls from an unrepentant swashbuckling primate.

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Location: Texas, United States

Thursday, September 21, 2017

What I've Been Up To Lately

More Excitement Than I Really Wanted...

OK, been absent for a *really* long time.   I am 100% to blame for the lack of posting from July up to Aug. 25th.   After that, I blame Harvey.

Here's the chronological log from FaceBlog:

August 25 at 2:47pm · 
Well, I'm woefully unprepared for Harvey's arrival. Genny hasn't been started in 3-4 years. Probably a nice coat of varnish in the tank & carb. Gas can & jumbo extension cord also MIA.
My plan to acquire water via the dispenser kiosk at the local Food-o-Rama was scotched by a horde of thirsty locals surrounding the tap about 4 deep. I'll try again tonight.
Food won't be a pressing issue. I could stand to lose more than a few pounds, and if it gets to the point when I'm tempted to crack open the SPAM stash, I've got some MRE peanut butter and crackers that'll cease & desist operations of the GI tract for the duration.
Not worried. Stove and water heater run on gas. Water shall fall from the sky in biblical quantities, so if the SHTF, I can always boil water and not die of dysentery...

August 26 at 9:50pm · 
4.6 inches of rain in last 24 hours. Still got room in the bayou for another 10" before things start getting squirrelly. Retention pond out back has enough H2O to float a shrimp trawler.
Note to pizza shops: Y'all need air boats or Boston Whalers for delivery...

August 27 at 7:54pm · 
Harvey has slipped me the Big Wet Willie. House flooded, not sure about van. Water receding, but still 2-3 days of rain ahead. Have food,water, power and flush toilets, so staying in place and giving shelter space to those that need it. Using lots of Purell on my feets to keep the nasties at bay.
Stress level at Supermax. 2nd flood in 15 months, on top of Mom's passing. Ready to break my 20 year moratorium on bong rips. Fortunately I have no clue how to acquire any Devil Lettuce.
Appreciate the thoughts, likes and prayers, but if y'all could band together and send a barrel of Maker's Mark, that would help with the healing...

August 28 at 8:58pm · 
Still sheltering in place. Not pleasant, but I've lived through worse. Power on, water OK.
Dam releases are far from me. Might get more flood water from rainfall, but more worried about dealing with FEMA.
Well, if you need to declutter your life, have 10,000 gallons of H2O roll through your stuff. Twice. Glad I never got around to buying a Living Room suite...
More later. Must go curl up and whimper for a while.

August 29 at 2:30pm · 
Harvey Update: Water in neighborhood almost drained. House squishy, but power still on. Have fans blowing and clothes dryer working OT. Water heater out, so cold showers adding insult to injury. Had to unplug fridge for a while, compressor was submerged. It's running OK, but frozen vittles are a loss.
Dehydrated lasagna from Mountain House surprisingly edible. Beef Stew? Eh, not so much...

August 30 at 9:32am · 
Harvey update: If you've messaged me, I'm slowly trying to respond. Laptop soaked and WiFi dead, so just got Messenger up & running.
Not ignoring you, just being ignorant on how Facebook works on a cell phone. Swore I wouldn't put FB on my phone, but needs must when the SHTF...

August 30
Harvey Update 8/30: 
Help flew in on angel wings today! Cisco Kid and wife Consigliere came bearing gifts of Damp-Rid, wet vac, and best of all, a double cheeseburger! 
Can't thank them enough for pulling wet carpet and sorting debris. Also, water heater back in action!
MY VAN IS DRY!!! Not a drop got in as far as I can tell. Started right up, ran fine. Huge load off my stress pile.
So, a bit of good news. Not out of the woods yet, but I'm gonna be able to drive out instead of walking...

August 31 at 2:36pm · 
Harvey Update 8/31: Took hours of dialing just to leave a message with Natl. Flood Insurance Co. From an ex-call center manager perspective I'm appalled, but given that they've probably got 50K calls in queue, I understand. Just hope they call back before Xmas...

September 1 at 12:13pm · 
Harvey Update 9/1: I sure could use some help.
It kills me to ask this. I've spent most of my life trying to get by on my own, but this mess is beyond me. Like the kiddies are saying "I can't even!"
If you can spare some time & energy Sat or Sun, it would really help get a handle on this mess. I can't feed you or pay you, but I do have A/C in the house, so it's not a sauna in here.
PM, text for address & details. Thanks from the bottom of my damp soggy heart!

September 1 at 2:21pm · 
Update To The Update:
Some of y'all were asking about a Paypal account. I do have one. Don't know how the process works, but the account is:
(Bloggers, Email me at address at top of page)
Obviously, replace the parentheses with the usual symbols. That's also my email addy, but still offline. Can't reply until I swap out the dead Uverse router.

September 2 at 9:18pm · 
Harvey Update 9/2:
Wow. What a day. The debris pile on the curb is 3 feet high and stretches the width of my lot and 10 feet next door.
An amazing crew achieved the miraculous, even with me freaking out like a caffeinated gibbon.
Some heartbreaking losses among the soggy items bagged & dragged to the street. Haven't even gotten to the wet books yet.
Very odd to stand in back bedroom and see through two closets and the master bedroom into the kitchen!
More tomorrow, including credit where credit's due for the Castle Anthrax Wrecking Crew. I've got to go collapse now...

September 3 at 11:54pm · 
Harvey Update 9/3:
"Keep Calm, and Always Have Ketchup!"
Promised an update today, so here goes...
I am truly humbled to have friends that will put their life on hold, drive from all over town and spend the day doing some serious work to keep my house livable and prepped for reconstruction.
I don't know if there's some secret training camp for flood recovery and calming agitated flood victims, but this crew obviously graduated with honors!
Supplies came pouring in, from waste bags to laundry soap. Food & cold water was abundant, including awesome pizza from Pink's, kolaches and donuts (which the thrice-damned pissants found and swarmed. Guess the ants were tired of MRE's too...)
Some kind soul even brought canned goods and snacks to refill my depleted pantry!
OK, so here's the Castle Anthrax Hall of Fame crew:
Cisco Kid and wife Consigliere came out for a second day of fun & adventure. CK has been a Rock of Reason to cling to as the floodwaters keep trying to wash my sanity out to the Gulf. Consi braved the horrors of Bachelor Bathrooms and made it out alive. Daughter "Little Bit" was not so pleased, 'cause El Cap didn't have a drop of ketchup in the house for her ChikFilA nuggets. (El Cap was mortified by his dereliction and offered Sriracha, but Daddy CK said no...)
High School Bud #1, & wife and family came up from Clear Lake to help. Have not laid eyes on HSB1 in 20+ years but when I needed help, help came running. Old school ties may get slack with age, but damn if they're not resilient!
High School Bud #2, husband High School Bud #3 and eldest daughter came to help. (Slight digression: are you still not supposed to call minors by 1st name online? Or does it matter? Not a parent , but IIRC it's supposed to make it harder for creeps to lure kids)
Anyway, HSB3 was a machine, wrecking, hauling and doing what needed doing.
HSB2 was a marvel. If the USA decides to invade NKorea, put her in charge of planning & logistics! When I came close to a meltdown when it was discovered my bed had been soaking up water and had to be trashed, HSB2 said "I got this!", disappeared for a while and came back with a new mattress set. HSB2, if you ever need a kidney, I've got two...
College Bud 1 is a college friend that I need to make more effort to see, 'cause she lives right down the darn road!! She and her son were a huge help getting the damp & soggies removed.
Special thanks to Jason M. Jason is a Philadelphia firefighter who came down with a crew to help out. He spent some time today breaking walls and hauling trash. If you need 3 dozen boxes of books moved, and another dozen wet (and HEAVY!) Boxes removed, ask a buffed-out fireman. Those guys are great!
Thanks to FlyGirl for the connection.
So, my sincere thanks to all of you for your assistance! I'd be a moaning mold-covered lump by now otherwise!
More later. Must go become one with the new bed!

September 4 at 9:52pm · 
Harvey Update 9/4:
"Odds & Ends"
Some random observations regarding the recent deluge:
Bought a Lifestraw emergency water filter last year. Didn't find it until today. Hint- label your storage boxes!
The Mr. Beer home-brewing kit makes awful beer, however the fermenter keg and 24 oz bottles make dandy water storage containers.
Though I have yet to test my warhammer against its intended target (zombie skulls), I can say that it goes through drywall like s#!% through a goose.
The floor will no longer be considered the largest shelf in the house. From here out, the only permanent residents below 16" in elevation is linoleum, tile and chair legs. Don't know if anyone sells a refrigerator stand like you see with washer/dryers, but they can be made.
Be prepared to use a stepladder to get on the new furniture.
Weepholes in brickwork work both ways...
Opening your front door during the flood crest is a *really* bad idea.
Probably a good idea to anchor down your patio furniture. I'm really not sure how a cast iron chair ends up exiting the back porch and then is found sitting upright at the edge of the property line. I can only assume a passing alligator wanted to relax for a while and moved it...
OK, need to get more laundry done and get some sleep. Back to work tomorrow.

September 5 at 8:10pm · 
Muchas Gracias to everyone that donated online to the "Save El Cap" fund via PayPal.
Your generosity is overwhelming. When I was finally able to access the PayPal account at work today, I was... well, the Brits have a perfect word for my reaction. I was gobsmacked!
Please email me your snailmail addy so I can send you a proper Thank You note. I'll even include a genuine sample of damp drywall and soggy carpet pad, suitable for framing!
Seriously, thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!
Y'all are awesome!

September 7 at 11:48pm · 
I'm regretting not going long on gypsum futures. There's gonna be a metric assload of drywall being sold all around the coast...