They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me
dr_phil_physics

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Disconnected From The Grid For A While

It's Been Pretty Busy The Last Few Days

Unctuous, horrible hot humid weather for a few days at the end of last week, then a couple days of glorious cooler weather -- including two nights of open windows plus blankets equals perfect sleeping weather -- but the humidity keeps creeping up during the day. You know you're in trouble when the dew point is barely four degrees below the thermometer reading. Dehumidifier in the basement and the bedroom air conditioner have been working hard, even if the temp doesn't make it outside to much more than 80degF.

No, I Mean Disconnected From The Grid

The big house project which never really happened last year is rolling ahead as I write. Today was Electrical Day at Chez Dr. Phil. One new circuit added for a sump pump, which gets added in ten days, so we can drain the old water heater. A second new circuit for the in-line hot water heater which will replace it. Oooh. Cool hot water system.

Then there was the Big Activity at the east end of the estate. Four holes dug in the ground and a trench leading to the garage. The contractors had already built the sturdy deck which would go on the four poles sunk in the ground -- and they also had the Kohler 12kW residential backup generator in the back of the pickup truck. Kohler cool! Lots of moving of wires and installation of the automatic transfer switch. Sucker uses a pair of big old solenoid coils to physically flip the switch up or down. Nice. Gas company comes tomorrow to run the 3/4" line from our 500-gallon LP tank. The electricians will be back on Saturday morning to install the generator -- then we get to test it by killing the house mains cutoff switch and watching the generator turn itself on. Double-cool.

Not only did they turn off the mains while doing the wiring, they even pulled the electric meter. And had jumper cables hooked up to the power company lines, so they could run extension cords and provide light in the basement. Triple-off-the grid-cool.

Don't try this at home, kids. These are professionals.

As Wall Street Plummets

The lead electrician on the project thanked me for asking them to do the job. Residential house building and renovating is way down the last month or so as many people suddenly find they can't get financing. The Geniuses of Wall Street are forcing a situation whereby people who got adjustable rate mortgages even last year, and finding their rates shooting up, are unable to get refinancing. This makes no sense. Why in the world would you take people who CAN make their previous payments and have no intention of not doing so, and jump up their payments to where they CAN'T make their payments -- and then think it's better to drive them to bankruptcy and foreclosure? Where's the profit in that? Oh, I forgot -- Wall Street is insane with short-term madness. I don't call this blog "They Didn't Ask Me" for nothing.

Fortunately we have a decent mortgage -- and are now about halfway through it monthwise -- and have never refinanced nor needed to. And we've never gotten a second mortgage, a.k.a. a "home improvement loan", in order to finance Hawaiian holidays and big screen TVs in a festival of overconsumptive consumerism. No, we took some savings and will be able to write the checks for all this work this summer. Whoa, isn't that how things used to work? Like in the 50s? Maybe I AM locked into a Heinlein universe.

That's cool, as long as the bugs remain small enough for me to stomp on them. (grin)

Dr. Phil
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