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All Grown Up

Posted on 2016.05.02 at 21:10
Current Location: 67114

For several years now I've made these enormous crock-pot meals - almost always lentils & greens, and more often than not peppers and beans. On rare occasion a meat and/or very little rice or pasta. They're never seasoned the same way twice either - I vary wildly on whether I season it with cumin and turmeric with curry or cumin with chili powder, sometimes I'll make an Italian dish out of it and sometimes make it cheesy. We've had lasagna flavored, pizza flavored, southwestern chili, BBQ. Anyway, I usually make them over the weekend then eat on them for a week. They're really very visually appealing the first day, then less so over subsequent days until it just turns into goop.

Which is why my daughter a couple of years back exclaimed, "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?" when she found her brother eating a large bowl of (I think it was Texan chili-style) one day. He looked sheepish, as they'd vowed to never eat the crock-pot meal, but he explained, "I know, but its really, really good!" She was so disgusted with him.

We had spent last week and last weekend apart, but were both home Monday. When she got off the bus she begged, "Please tell me you made something in the crock-pot..." I had to smile. Its become her favorite snack when she gets off the bus, and her favorite weekend staple - a big bowl of whatever is in the crock-pot that week :)

Typhoon SSBN


Posted on 2016.04.30 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114

Now that I know how to best wield it, its crazy that the absolute best pictures I get are with a 40-year old Soviet lens I got on eBay for $25. I do sometimes wonder what results would yield if I had a full-frame camera, but I am not in the least bit disappointed with how they turn out on the crop-sensor. I am so pleased in fact, that I researched and purchased another Helios, the 77M-4, a 50mm f/1.8. Its supposed to be equally (if not more) swirly. It arrives from the Ukraine in a month. The two pictures I had printed locally were tagged with a note asking if I was printing copyrighted material when I picked them up - they weren't convinced they were mine until I signed an affidavit.

I've tagged my Helios shots here: ehowton.livejournal.com/tag/helios


Oz in Spring

Posted on 2016.04.29 at 00:00
Current Location: 67550

Helios 44-2


My Other Grip is Non-Sentient

Posted on 2016.04.28 at 15:01
Current Location: 67550

Shooting down at the Ponderosa


Busy Day

Posted on 2016.04.27 at 22:04
Current Location: 67114
Tags: , ,

My alarm woke me at 0855, and five minutes later I was dialed into two conference calls, and logged into work with a piping hot mug of black coffee. Emails, more meetings, unix, change requests, and I was done. I opened the garage door, powered on the subwoofer and turned on my Engima mix while removing two of the four door panels of TURDUCKEN and pulling out the speakers. Then I completed my research on car stereos (settled on the Sony MEXXB100BT with a built-in amp), edited some portraits from this past weekend's shoot, and ordered the Mother's day gifts for the kids (they wanted to present her with their portraits which I had mounted - his and hers). I revamped my pending Harry Potter mix and listened once again to my yet-to-be-released Terminator mix. At some point I managed a healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner, played Minecraft with my daughter, and Wizard101 with my girlfriend.

Bet I sleep good tonight.



Posted on 2016.04.21 at 16:46
Current Location: 67567
Tags: ,

Dreamed last night I was in Germany, at a beer fest, with a group of my British friends. It was so wonderful, drinking all the delicious beers. I made the circuit twice around. I could not remember ever being more happy.



Posted on 2016.04.19 at 14:00
Current Location: 67567

Dreamed Dorian and I lived with Muse and her boyfriend for the second night in a row. The first night we lived in lean-to's and tents in a big field where it rained all the time. Like Woodstock. We lived there along side jesskd26 and her husband drax0r and their four kids. And my two kids. And Muse's two kids. There were SO MANY KIDS. Someone was always having a birthday party and I was wearing a tie to work every day and driving a goddamn Buick because that's what I did. Commute. That was a nightmare all of its own.

But last night's dream took a much darker turn. Because Muse's past had caught up with her as some relation brought her caravan to the nice house we shared and parked it next to the pool. She was carnie folk, and Muse was doing everything to rid our house of her because she brought with her not only bad juu-juu, but also a devastating realization of her past that the townsfolks could never know. Like, maybe she'd killed someone once upon a time. I dunno, but we needed her out, and fast.

Now its very possible that this next part was because I'd inexplicably wondered if John Cleese had played, or been credited as Nearly Headless Nick in all the Harry Potter's or just the few I remembered him in right before I fell asleep in real life; I dreamed we were being haunted by Hector, the Rector specter. Yes, there was the ghost of a clergyman of a long-abandoned parish named Hector who was haunting us. Hector, the Rector specter. I wondered in my dream if he was collaborating with other spirit beings up and down the ecclesiastical ladder with equally lyrical name/title combinations, like Haimen, the layman daemon. I dunno, I couldn't come up with any in my dream. I was going to try to incorporate, "Cardinal" for reasons unknown.

Doc Brown


Posted on 2016.04.18 at 10:45
Current Location: 67114

A month ago I tore the cartilage from my left knee in an unremarkable way: walking. I was on crutches for week and a knee brace for two. Daily ice packs and a GF who's certified in kinesiology and I'm back to walking normally again. Almost. So I went for my scheduled MRI. Only thing is, I've changed employers since then. But no worries, I signed up for bene's my first week.

Yesterday, I sat down to print out my coverage and discovered that none of my selections had been applied. So, I redid my selections, and printed out the card. But when I arrived in Wichita this morning (oh so early), I was told I they would need a member number prior to quoting me, but that I could still get the MRI and submit it when I received my member number! Having been duped far too many times before, I called the new insurance and was told it would take 10-14 days for my member number, but I could pay for the MRI out of pocket and later submit a reimbursement.

But also that MRI's weren't covered under this particular PPO without a prior pre-authorization from an intermediary who has to grill my primary care physician to ensure he's not just suggesting MRIs because he's bored or something (because I'm pretty sure that's what doctors do).

Needless to say I chose to not pay for an MRI myself, and simply drove me and my damaged knee back home to fight another day.


Proud Dad

Posted on 2016.04.15 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114

When my father and brother arrived for a long weekend visit last month, he gave each of my children $100 cash as a gift. Not 15-minutes later, my brother had managed to back into a yellow concrete pillar at the gas station in dad's brand new car.

My dad was fit to be tied and started reading my brother the riot act.

He stopped abruptly however, when my son asked him if he'd like the $100 back.

What a great kid.


New Again

Posted on 2016.04.02 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114
Tags: ,

Just got the truck out of the shop, and I couldn't be more thrilled. It was a frustrating sequence of events having purchased a used vehicle, but the brothers who run Select Motors couldn't have been more accommodating given the cascading issues, and their garage of choice, Alexander Motors is now my garage of choice as well. Despite the initial bowel-wrenching estimates, the professional attention I was given by the entire staff really did win me over.

Turducken now has a completely new front suspension - all Moog parts - tie rods, upper and lower ball joints, and two new shocks. Perhaps more importantly, four brand new catalytic converters. For the first time since driving off the lot, I now know why the 4.0L V6 was an option in the Ford Ranger; its damn impressive.


US Air Force and Drugs

Posted on 2016.03.31 at 09:13
Current Location: 67114
Originally posted by jobu121 at US Air Force and Drugs
The US Air Force is investigating illegal drug use among troops protecting a nuclear missile base.
Nuclear Missiles.

Really ehowton

Tell me it isn't so.
Well, it looks like the 90th Missile Wing is in a bit of hot water.
The probe is focusing on 14 enlisted airmen guarding the F.E. Warren Air Force Base near Cheyenne, Wyoming. The troops, assigned to the 90th Missile Wing, are under investigation for "illegal drug activity while off duty," General Robin Rand, commander of Air Force Global Strike Command stated.

In 2013, General Michael Carey was relieved of his position as head of the 20th Air Force -- responsible for three nuclear wings -- after he was reported binge drinking and fraternizing with "two foreign national women" during a trip to Russia.
Soon after, dozens of officers from the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana were suspended after they were found cheating on a routine test of their knowledge about how to operate missiles. Two were also implicated in a drug case. The Air Force uncovered the cheating when it was looking into illegal drug use on several bases.

Wow - crazy times in the Air Force.


OpenSUSE Leap 42.1

Posted on 2016.03.18 at 23:21
Current Location: 67114

8 Things To Do After Installing OpenSUSE LEAP 42.1


Lunatik's "Absinthe" over Killer Candy Pink

Posted on 2016.03.16 at 19:29
Current Location: 67114

Eric Howton Lunatik Absinthe March 2016



Posted on 2016.03.09 at 12:35
Current Location: 67114

Not much you can do with a low-end desktop. Mom's hard drive experienced an unrecoverable error and Dad brought it to me the last time he visited. I left the CPU untouched in this one (its unlikely he'll require L3 cache) but did replace the drive with one at 7200rpm, put in a matched set of max RAM, offboard the video and installed Windows 10.

Should give them a few more years out of this box.

Doc Brown

BRONZE Plan Lessons Learned

Posted on 2016.03.07 at 19:42
Current Location: 67114

Knowing I would have a new employer as of April 1st, I nervously gutted my healthcare plan effective January to save myself (literally) hundreds of dollars each paycheck. Unfortunately, state and federal taxes increased this slightly year, as well as upping my "taxable income" due to the BRONZE plan being less expensive. So while I'm now paying hundreds of dollars less for a much shitter healthcare insurance plan, I'm not actually seeing any of that money in my bank account.

Second casualty of BRONZE versus GOLD level insurance is normally inexpensive recurring prescriptions no longer are. And they didn't go up by a little, they went up quite a lot.

Paying for labs. Usually its just a co-pay and not a full-price activity. No more!

Today I needed a quick-acting relief medication. My doctor called it in, and several hours later I went to pick it up. The BRONZE plan refused, citing they wanted to ensure - I shit you not - that the doctor had first considered other options. They offered to let me pay for it out-of-pocket, but as you can imagine, it wasn't exactly cheap. Although now that I know the price, it will be interesting to see how much BRONZE plans fucks me when they finally relent.

So in order to SAVE money, I have to pick the most expensive plan out there, and that's all kinds of messed up. I'll be going GOLD April 1st. Also? I'm thinking of dropping United Health Care and going back to Aetna. Even when I was GOLD with UHC they sucked a lot more than Aetna ever did.

Eric Capitol

Kansas Caucus

Posted on 2016.03.06 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114

While I was standing in line at the Kansas caucus, it dawned on me that just like everything else in life, politics are equally as malleable. I have had new experiences over the last 8 years which has modified my worldview. In other words, things which were VERY important to me in my 20s weren't nearly as important to me in my 30s. Subsequently, I find myself chasing entirely different dreams in my 40s. This, I think, is how life is supposed to work. Somewhere along the way, we mature. We self-actualize and stop chasing things and start chasing ideas. In my 30s I had a new car, a big house, got married and had children - those things required providing for. New cars and bigger houses are no longer the focus of my life. What made me immeasurably happy then is different than what makes me immeasurably happy now.

I was standing in line at the Kansas caucus trying to articulate a way to explain that half the people in the United States aren't stupid - despite the low brow mouthpieces whose job it is to polarize an easily manipulated society (things are rarely as simplistic as most people state) when I realized much as I am seeking something different now, everyone else on this planet has their own pursuits of happiness, which understandably differ from my own. Because each of us is in a constant state of flux, and that flux alters our perception of the changing world around us, we're each simply finding that best fit for where we are at any given time.

I know people who support each of the candidates, and I don't think they are stupid, or dumb, or misguided. I think they have fantastic reasons for wanting their candidate to win - and unlike me, they're actually passionate about it. My happiness will not wax or wane one iota upon who actually gets elected, because I have not tied it to any particular outcome. I simply don't care that much and will continue to live the best version of myself no matter the possible obstacles. Its the only thing any of us can do.

Sadly, the endless meme's out there do not reflect this understanding. Each of them try to dichotomously outline why people who don't vote for their candidate are dumb rather than express we are all in different places in our lives, and politics isn't ever universally one thing or another. Our politics do not define us - how we grow and react and change the way we think about the world around us when our experiences differ from one another, does.



Posted on 2016.03.05 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114
Tags: ,

Tested the 4x4 functionality last night on a gravel road on the way to take this picture of GBZ. Looks pretty good for a 14-year old truck, huh? Also? GF wanted me to name it. Now, I don't usually name my vehicle, but I hereby dub this one, "Turducken!"


GBZ Spring 2016

Posted on 2016.03.04 at 12:21
Current Location: 67114
Tags: ,

Helios 44-2

Eric Sepia


Posted on 2016.03.03 at 10:28
Current Location: 67114
Tags: ,

Scheduled the truck for a comprehensive assessment and tune-up at a local performance shop; K&N air filter upgrade and synthetic oil change. Hopefully all good things. Bought some floor mats and a steering wheel cover. What can I say, I prefer leather. Still need the side windows tinted.


Playskool My First Pickup

Posted on 2016.03.02 at 10:27
Current Location: 67114
Tags: ,

I remember my college roommate Stephen Rotton driving a late 80s Ranger around Irving, TX, my Air Force roommate photogoot and his early 90s Ranger ("I'm a big-truck guy and didn't know it" he exclaimed after trading it in for a 93 Dodge Ram 1500) throughout Hampton Roads, VA, Brad Burton and his late 90s Ranger tooling around Omaha, NE, and drax0r and his 3-month long Enterprise rental of this almost exact truck while we were in Andover, MA. That and an ex-girlfriend had one I towed my 1968 Dodge Coronet 440 to San Angelo, TX with one long, lazy weekend.

So why did I turn to this eponymous vehicle?

BECAUSE TRUCKS ARE STUPID EXPENSIVE. I had no idea. When I was growing up this was not the case. They were strictly utility vehicles. Meet the 2002 Ford Ranger XLT SuperCab 4x4.


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