07 July 2014

Monday Musings...
I think you will find that this post might have a tad LESS MUSING in it, and perhaps a bit MORE RANT...and with good reason.
We already had ONE power outage (at 0717 hrs - for one bloody SECOND)...AND then BLOGGER went and deleted my entire post...didn't know one (accidental CTL) keystroke could do THAT, so I gotta re-enter everything...
And there were other issues...
But, we'll discuss that in a minute.
Today's Hoosierland weather will be rainy and cloudy, so don't expect much else. Sorry, not my forecast.
Temps will be around 82 degrees and nicely muggy.
So, let's pour a cup of that morning beverage and we'll see what shakes...fair enough?
Meanwhile, back in the 80s...
*** I begin today with all the asshats that managed to find those loud-ass M-80 firecrackers...the "mailbox-busters" as we used to call 'em.
We were bracketed on TWO side by idiots with less sense than that they were born with.
And the old "Fortress" was shaking like a dog crapping bones as each one went off.
Yet, unlike the walls of Jericho, OUR "Fortress" walls remain intact.
(gonna need a LOT bigger "Shofar", you dumbasses...heh)
Still, what was bothersome was that they wouldn't set them off one after another...they'd WAIT for a spell, and the sudden "BOOM" would catch you somewhat "off-guard".
Our cat wasn't too pleased with the outdoor "frivolity", either.
Wifey and I DID buy some fireworks, but NONE of ours were NOISY...just very cool, like those "fountains" that spill out cascading , multi-colored sparks all over...and smoke bombs of differing colors, and of course...SPARKLERS.
We spent less than $10 for all that...and it lasted less than 15 minutes total.
The assholes around here went on for HOURS, especially with the 30MM mortar rounds that boom when they reach apogee. You can actually feel the concussion from the blast (like artillery)
So, we had some f$cktards who spent some SERIOUS money, and not JUST for one day...oh, no...we're into our FOURTH DAY (starting on the night of the 3rd).
Same house - different day
What WAS funny (and laden with KARMA)  was the Latinos across the street were setting off fireworks IN THE STREET when a FWPD cruiser rolled up and "attempted" to make a turn (couldn't because of the rockets going off). He said something to them and they stopped completely for the night (and the officer returned a short time later, orbiting the block to make sure...ROFLMAO...
I LOVED it  to no end.
This happened around 0200 hrs Saturday morning..
God bless that officer, and why didn't we have MORE in the area?
Moving on...
*** Speaking of which, police officers in both Gary, Indiana AND Indianapolis were killed over the weekend. A sad day in both cities.
The thin blue line
My thoughts and prayers are with the comrades and families of the fallen officers.
Here's the story:
They caught the one in Indy (has a record and had an assault rifle...not bad for a serious violent felon who should NOT possess one), and the cop-killer in the Gary case was found later yesterday.
It was a citizen that discovered the bleeding officer around 5AM in his patrol car and called it in.
(pin a medal on that person)
-- AAaaannnndddd, we had ANOTHER shooting on Fort Wayne's (where else?) SOUTHEAST SIDE...
Here's this story:
This took place around 0230 hrs this morning in the 5100 block of Winter St.
*** Next up, what is worse than having an old piece of "obsolete" technology...like a VCR?
Having a couple HUNDRED tapes you can't WATCH on the dang thing...that's what!
I was digging through my archives of BETA tapes Saturday, and came across some of the "classics" I had recorded in Philly a while back (from cable)...like the 1990 Captain America movie (Matt Salinger), and the COLORIZED version of The Thing From Another World (1951).
Truly...one of THE classic Sci-Fi flicks.
So, I fire up the Sony Betamax (that I rarely use and never abuse) and it promptly takes the tape...and then refuses to play.
The WORST part is that it won't EJECT the tape either (uh, oh...this can't be good).
Well, there was a little good news, in that I managed to extricate the tape in excellent shape, without damage to the tape OR the machine, but the (once-reliable) Beta VCR is now a conversation piece, more or less. I cannot get it to function as it used to...dunno what the hell's wrong, either.
Now, the BAD news...(you mean it gets WORSE, Bob?)...no one seems to WORK on these any longer, and if they do, it COSTS, and you have to SHIP it elsewhere (Fort Wayne is apparently NOT a mecca for electronics repair from decades past).
It's a "Bob" thing...these days.
It's like losing an old friend, and I was VERY bummed out Saturday and most of Sunday (Sorry Chris, no classic movies or TV for a while..if ever)
So, you can see my "options" at this point are all but non-existent.
To transfer all the tapes I have to DVDs would cost more than the price of the house...yes, I have THAT many tapes (a couple HUNDRED @ 4.5 hours each) Next, what hurts the most is ALL the time I had spent TO RECORD all of these shows and movies...WITHOUT COMMERCIAL INTERRUPTION.
That was a good chunk of my life...better part of more than a few years, in fact, and it's gone.
The best analogy would be like having famed Egyptian archaeologist Dr. ZAHI HAWASS spending YEARS excavating a tomb, discovering all those treasures, and then not being able to SEE ANYTHING he recovered... Yeah, that covers it.
"...And MY beta tapes are over THERE..."
But...there is always...a plan.
I will attempt to get a used model online (gonna be a couple hundred bucks), and HOPE that works out for me. Cassette decks I got on eBay in the past have panned out well.
You have to realize that the model I have (SONY SL-S600 - seen below) was a top-of-the-line non-stereo model back in 1990 (when I got it...from a place in TEXAS), and set me back close to $400 bucks (then).
I usually don't like to buy junk, kapeesh?
The ONLY other alternative would be to send MY unit off (someplace else in the USofA) and have it repaired (parts are VERY limited availability if at all to be found). THAT will also cost close to a couple HUNDRED bucks...so damned if you do, or damned if you don't.
Yeah, it's a crapshoot either way...and a costly one at that.
At least I have a TV repairman coming to service the (1980s era) Mitsubishi CRT 21" stereo set in the living room (takes a while to "warm up")...before THAT craps the hell out on me.
*** Now, along those lines...here's an idea (of mine) that would solve a SH*TLOAD of problems...
Leave it to Bob...
Okay, say you have ALL these video tapes...weddings, movies, family excursions, etc, and NO way to play them as VCRs (in general) are becoming harder to find. Betas are damn near impossible.
Here's the plan...
Why not make a PLAYBACK ONLY "deck" for BOTH tape formats?
They wouldn't take up any of the room that an old VCR does, they'd weigh less than 2 pounds, the cost would be relatively LOW (as cheap as a current DVD player (and come with a remote for the hell of it), as it doesn't have to do anything but load, play, and unload a tape.
A REWINDER can be bought separately, for cheap...I already have one for the Betamax. Or you could always have a REW button on the deck, again...for the hell of it.
We have sonething in common, Bob.
Most video tapes were not stereo anyway, so you wouldn't even NEED two (or four) heads for playback...just ONE.
The technology certainly exists (and has as long as VCRs have been around), so WHY hasn't anyone MADE ONE yet?
Talk about an opportunity for some "American Exceptionalism", hmm?
Seems they would FLY off the shelves with all the tapes STILL out there, collecting dust in some box in some closet, basement or attic.
And those who get a playback deck would STILL be able to watch the old home movies, see loved ones again, and relive a lot of good memories.
(and I could watch that 1990 Captain America movie again...)
Damn shame I don't have a million to develop it.
Whoever would make these (SONY would be my first choice, as they originally had the patents on BOTH tape formats) could make a VHS version and a BETA version...case closed, eh?
You :"could" also have these decks with multiple outputs to OTHER devices (TVs are a given of course, even digital HD flatscreens) such as DVR machines, and you could effectively "BURN" your OWN copies of what you have on all those tapes...
Like I said, this is another one of my "BOBBY G. MILLION-DOLLAR MAKING IDEAS" that will NEVER be created...BUT SHOULD!
Someone could clean up on this, especially if they initially sold them through HSN or QVC...or even AMAZON.
I mean WTF is taking SO long to invent something SO damn simple that SHOULD have come along SO damn many years before???
*** Okay, now onto a "birthday" celebration of sorts...my FIREBIRD is officially THIRTY ONE YEARS OLD (blow out the candles)!
The Fortress's "Batmobile" (sidekick not included)
I took purchase of this car that long ago (from Triboro Pontiac in Cinnaminson, NJ), and it's been a "love affair" ever since, even though "we" had some rough times along the way.
(don't ALL "couples"?)...LOL.
Funny thing...THAT tech still works fine - the combustion engine has been around for over 100 years, and it STILL works, AND you can FIX it when it breaks.
Still running...after all these years...
Can't say that for electronics, can we? Thank all the overseas companies for that...underbidding us for damn near everything...which leads to massive RECALLS for cars in the USA...who'da thunk THAT one?
I remember the time a couple buddies and myself were sitting around, a few drinks apiece under our belts, and we came up with an "idea" to put the RADIO functions into the STEERING WHEEL of a car, so that your gaze would not wander as far from the windshield when changing stations and so on.
They STOLE our idea...because they could.
Honda came along with that a DECADE later...wonder where they ever got THAT idea, anyway?
Now, since the advent of bluetooth and cell phones, THOSE functions can also be found within the center or side areas of steering wheels...
(that's why they also cost SO damn much to replace)
But hey, that's the way life goes...YOU think something up, and someone ELSE makes the money off of that idea, right?
*** Last back to the garage today...technology is always changing...it's constantly "in flux", as it were, and woe to those of not fortunate (or wealthy) enough to keep pace with all of it.
And yet, some technology from the past STILL lingers about us...like the venerable TURNTABLE.
They STILL make NEW ones...for ALL those OLD records many of us STILL have...why is that?
Why have those and not a new video tape machine?
Or NEW cassette players?
A wall of OLD tech...I miss this stuff.
And what about the original LASERDISKS?
They were more of a forerunner to the modern DVD than video tapes, and they died a rapid death in the consumer market.
So, what WILL be next, and render ALL our DVDs obsolete...and available players non-existent?
How's about cranial IMPLANTS?
A movie by THOUGHT?
THAT should make driving even more "fun" than it is now (with all the distractions).
Let's never go THERE, hmm?
Better than M/S...for a reason.
Apple has changed their computer O/S fewer times than the fingers on one hand...they just keep amending the one they HAVE...making it better all around, while
Microsoft spits out new versions of O/S every few years, all with more bugs than a damn bait shop...and we're stuck with NO support for the former versions...how fun is that, kids?
And we HAVE to buy it, or else (go to MAC...lol)
I think we really should hold on to SOME of the tech from a bygone era...just so we can recall what we can do by manufacturing a BETTER product overall (and also, as a "plan B")...if we choose to do so, rather than change everything every other year.
Besides, doesn't all that was once old become "new" again...sooner or later?
Just some things to think about...
Be well, make a difference to someone, and...
Stay SAFE out there,America.
((and hang on to those video tapes...JUST in case...lol))


CWMartin said...

So rather than piss you off by giving you the business about "WTH ever had a beta in the FIRST place", i'll move on to mention we had a good mortar barrage throughout the evening of the 4th/5th, but at enough distance that it shook the air but not the building. But if my guess on location is right, I'll bet the inmates at the assisted living clinc and apartments needed extra poly-grip!

Bob G. said...

Now you KNOW I wouldn't have a BETA machine if it didn't provide a BETTER picture resolution than VHS (which it always did, thanks to the formatting)...BUT marketing inundation by OTHER (VHS) brands did beta in...sad to say.

Still, I think my idea is a great one, even for die-hard VHS fans.

And OUR mortar barrage was a LOT closer (like having an ALPHA STRIKE on your own grid reference...lol)
Another night in "Little Fallujah"

Thanks for stopping by to comment.

Stay safe up there.

ms nk rey said...

Look this up if you dare. http://wishtv.com/2014/07/06/murder-suspects-family-speaks-out-about-shooting/
You may need to cut and paste. It is really awful how these people think. So upsetting.
Down here in Podunk it was pretty quiet on the fireworks front.
Glad I have better neighbors.. sorry to brag.

Bob G. said...

The WANE link has snippets from that very same video...
Whatta load of BS!
These "people" have NO idea what normal behavior is...period!

They're the sort of idiots that couldn't figure out how to pour piss out of a damn boot with the INSTRUCTIONS written on the HEEL!

But, I'll bet good money they're on the "government dime".
Not one lick of gratitude (for that).
Very sad, indeed.

And regarding your neighbors...
Go ahead and BRAG...I don't mind mind but (more envious, really...lol)

Hope you had a good weekend.
And thanks for stopping by to comment.

Stay safe down there, dear.

ms nk rey said...

Yep I could not believe they said that .. it was the officers fault he should have stayed in his car when he saw that he was armed, just unbelievable and scary.

Bob G. said...

A lot of officers are now carrying the M-4 carbine (an M-16 variant) in their trunk.
Wonder if this officer had one, and if so, why he didn't exit the cruiser to get it?
Shouldn't go up against an assault rifle with (just) a service pistol.
We might never know either way.
Stay safe.