Eric Lindsay's Blog August 2013

Thursday 1 August 2013

Leaving Townsville

I was up a bit after four. It took me a while to get the car packed. I should have done it in the evening. However I was away from Townsville well before five. I reached Brandon late, due to construction delays, around six. No sign of anything open at Home Hill, so my dream of an apple slice was not fulfilled. Luckily I had left a few small chocolates in my travel box, so when I got too hungry I snacked on them. I turned off the back road onto Shute Harbour Road around eight. So I guess the time was not all that bad.

Shopping Fails Again

I stopped at the Centro Shopping Centre. Checked the Mitre 10 hardware store, without finding things of use. I do keep considering an outdoor lounge, but it means more stuff to pull inside. I need a better idea for that. The DVD store was not open.

Checked Woolworths and BigW, without finding anything. I am reducing the amount of food I eat, and using up old stock, so normal food was not really on the shopping agenda. Which sort of reduced the range I looked at in Woolworths.

Checked the Cheap Shop, without finding anything that could be subverted. Checked Harvey Norman furniture looking for lights (I found three cube lights there a long while ago). No luck on decent lights. They had nice Jason leather lounge suites, but I would just wreck leather.

Checked Harvey Norman electronics, but I could not find anything of use to me. As an Apple user, most computer equipment is not of use. They did not have any fridge I could use as a replacement. All too large. I could not find a small loaf bread making machine.

I am amazed at how small cameras are getting, but I mostly use either an iPhone camera, or an ultra zoom camera with built in GPS. The small cameras are neither.

It was late enough that LEW lighting was open. I dropped in and ordered two more of the standing lamps. However I may be gone from Airlie Beach before they arrive.

Airlie Beach

I arrived home and unpacked the car. Apart from some lifting difficulties, it took only two trips up the stairs to get everything inside. Far easier than last week.

It was a little too late to want to start laundry, just because drying takes longer in winter, even on a very clear morning. I did put the various battery equipped solar chargers out on the balcony in the sun.

I discovered I still had a little thick sliced Cafe style raisin bread in the freezer, so I had a few slices of that for breakfast.

I watched the news while attending to the computer. The politicians are all out in force giving speeches, disputing policy bubbles from each other. Labor will put tobacco taxes up by 12.5% per year for the next four years, adding $5 per packet by the end. Given our tobacco taxes are already high, I do expect this will reduce the number of smokers another notch. This is a regressive tax, as the poor seem least able to resist this addictive and dangerous drug.

Got some measurements made on the boards I bought last week. Then it was time to take a walk around the much improved Airlie Beach, despite the by now late hour. The new footpaths are looking good. But why did they stop at the start of this block?

Remembered I had weed killer, so I sprayed Roundup on all the crap infesting the cracks on the balconies. It should be dead before I leave again, and maybe I can clean it up then.

Had creamed corn on toast for dinner. I seem to be reverting to childhood. However I mostly want to use up canned supplies.

Watched Star Trek: Deep Space Nine on 11 during the evening, while working on the computer. This meant I was late to bed, since they run three episodes back to back. I have no memory of seeing those episodes previously.


A Goods and Services Tax (GST), called a Value Added Tax (VAT) in Europe is relatively non-distorting consumption tax. The marginal efficiency cost of a 10% GST (the distortion it makes to investment, production and consumption) is around 10%. Most taxes are less efficient.

GST falls more heavily on the poor (since they have less opportunity to save), so it is a regressive tax that in effect taxes the income tax free threshold.

In Australia, only about 60% of goods and services are taxed. A lot of food is exempt. Education and several other services are exempt.

A GST is relatively hard to avoid. Each stage of production charges (and accounts for) GST, but can claim back GST they have paid to a previous stage of production. So there is a certain amount of paperwork, but it is relatively straightforward, and there is a big incentive to get it right.

In classic economics (Adam Smith in 1776), income equals consumption plus savings. Looking at the GST as an income tax, it is a flat rate tax on consumption, with an unlimited deduction for savings. It is a tax exclusively on residents spending in Australia. GST does not tax foreign investors spending overseas.

So functionally a GST is about the same as a flat rate income tax with no deductions, except for superannuation and savings, and with foreign residents and land and housing speculators exempt from tax. Looked at that way, it no longer sounds so sensible.

AGL Solar

I see AGL Energy got $166.7m of Federal Government subsidies from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, and the NSW government will pay $65m, towards otherwise uneconomic $450m of solar power stations. Plan is a 102MW solar power station at Nyngan, and 53MW at Broken Hill, to be operational in 2015. USA company First Solar will be suppliers.

Friday 2 August 2013


I was up at 6 a.m. It was a cool and partly overcast morning. I need a weather forecast. Scattered showers.

Weight has gone up to 70.3 kilograms, on a different set of scales.

I went for a morning walk around the Boathouse Apartments, along the marina beach, and then around the lagoon. Had breakfast on the main street. Collected a newspaper. I saw and chatted briefly with Sam on the way up the street. Chatted with Wal, who was recovering from a cold. Chatted with John downstairs. Covered 5.15 kilometres.

Started laundry, including sheets, despite the weather forecast. It would be inconvenient to attempt laundry on Saturday morning. I hope I get away with this. I was running very late with laundry, and it was after ten before I had all the clothes out on the balcony on airing racks. By then it was 9/10 overcast.

I stuck the fittings on the ends of the 30 metre hose I brought here. I needed that for the Innovations telescopic gutter sprayer and cleaner. However although I will be able to get some crap out of the gutters with it, I do not believe I can remove the actual shrubs in the gutters.


I started downloading email at 6:18 a.m. It stalled. I checked using a numeric ping. I am getting around 30% timeouts on my connection. So technically I still have an internet connection, however that many timeouts means it would not work on most web pages. I seem to have received a little email, but about seven are queued and not coming down. About one web page in a dozen straggles in. While the internet is technically operating, it is in fact unusable.

Tried to use the internet at 9:15 a.m. when I returned from my walk. I am not getting email reliably. Ping is showing a 14% packet loss. Email is downloading at well under 1 kbps. It took 15 minutes to download ten emails. The internet is still basically stuffed.

I power sequenced the NetGear ADSL modem. I seem to have an internet connection again.


I drilled one set of the radiata pine boards. Once I had the best choice of sides, I was able to do some countersink drilling, to help hide the screw heads. The boards are bowed in two directions. Not very bowed, but it would be good if I could get the final result to look straight. I understand why dimensionally stable particle board is more popular for construction, but I loath the stuff.

I don't know why it takes me so long to do minor work like this. I do need to let the little driver drill cool down every now and then, but that is hardly the problem. Still a lot better than doing all the work with a hand drill.

Bento Coffin

I see that Apple owned FileMaker have decided to drop their simple Bento database. Given I have a bunch of records in Bento, and can access them via my iPhone or iPad, I can not say I am particularly happy with this decision. In fact, thoroughly pissed off would be fairly accurate.

At least Bento uses SQLite3 via CoreData as a database format. There will be other options, including using Filemaker. There is a Bento to Filemaker Pro Guide, and a migration tool. However it all makes extra work for me.


I want screw caps to neatly cover screws in the furniture I have built. Likely brand Prestige Press In Screw Caps, in Pine colour. Here is what I found in their catalogue. O904844 CAP SCR PRESS-IN PNE PK100. Order unit is 9310086528635 in minimum of 6. I need around 100. Plus there are bookcases I have built that would look more attractve with screwcaps. So buying 600 would not be too unreasonable.

Saturday 3 August 2013

Market Morning

I got up around 5:30 a.m. No point trying to resist the call of a kookaburra. You are not going back to sleep. It was cool, by tropical standards. Inside was at a little over 23°C. Outside was down to 20°C. I could see the waning moon through the window around the time I got up. The sky was mostly overcast, which is interesting as the forecast was for a fine day today.

My weight is 70.7 kilograms. I sinned and ate food yesterday. Must try to do better. Luckily most left over snack foods are now gone, and I do not intend to replace them.

I walked to the markets. Chatted with the folks trying to protect the Great Barrier Reef, and signed their petition. Chatted with Olga when I collected my breakfast. Chatted with Helen, but did not need any of her conserves of sauces. Saw Alison, newly returned and still jet lagged. Glenn returned to his stall. Chatted with George's crew. No sign of Rex. Spoke to Michael, when I finally found his stall.

Took a walk around the lagoon. The newly paved streets are looking good. I am starting to consider the builders may (just) meet their deadline for opening the main street.

Dropped in at the news agency, and collected newspapers from Jo.

Only a little over two kilometres this walk. Very sparse.


Internet slows down at 10:28 a.m. Pings failing 20% of the time. Power sequenced Netgear ADSL modem.

Internet fails 11:22a.m. Modem red failure light on this time. Power sequence ADSL modem. My connection returned.


I completed the countersink drilling of my boards. This was after finally cleaning those horrible sticky labels off the radiata pine.

Balcony Measurements

I did some rough measurements of the balcony. The length is around 9.5 metres. The width is around 2.58 metres.

At the apartment wall, the roof overhang is about 2.8 metres high. The overhang extends horizontally around 1.1 metres. Since it slopes, the front of the overhang is lower, at around 2.41 metres high.

So with the height on the wall opposite the front edge of the overhand around 39 centimetre, and the imaginary adjacent side of the right angle triangle formed with the wall being 110 centimetre, this makes the hypotenuse (which I can not actually reach high enough to measure) equal to the square root of the square of the adjacent side plus the square of the opposite side. Or square root of (110*110) + (39*39), or square root of 13621, which is a little over 115 centimetres.

However I am more interested in the angle of the overhang, which is the tangent of the opposite over the adjacent. So 39/110 is around 0.35 radians. A radian is dimensionless, just the radius of a circle, spread around the circumference. Or 360° divided by 2pi. I want degrees, which is 39/110 times 57.2958 or about 20°.

This is fortunate, as that is about my latitude south of the equator. So that would not be too bad an angle for solar panels. A little less may be better, for greater winter results, but it will do.

Next step, find solar panel sizes.


Streaming stinks. How do you stop any attempt at streaming video?


I checked in the BWS store for Pepperjack Shiraz. Ouch! A bottle of that wine is now $31. This is the red wine I supply at my parties. Luckily I still have a half case on hand. I will sure be looking elsewhere to get a better price than $31 a bottle. W(h)ine.

Sunday 4 August 2013

Sleepless Morning

I woke up before two. This is not good. Tried to get back to sleep. No luck at all. I ended sitting in my armchair with my iPad, reading stuff I probably should never have bothered to read in the first place.

My weight has gone up to 71.1 kilograms. This is not good, as Sunday is my official weigh in day. The good news is that there is hardly any sinful food left in the apartment. The bad news is that is because I ate it yesterday.

I put the solar chargers out on the table. It was cold out, just under 20°C.

I went for a walk a little after seven. On this winter day, that means it was starting to et light, but the sun had not appeared above the hill. So I did not have sun in my eyes when I walked past the Port of Airlie Marina, and then over to their beach. After that I went around the lagoon, then back down the main street. The footpaths are starting to look good. Noticed more shops arriving, including the ShoeBiz, now back at the far end of town. Collected a newspaper before I went up the hill and home. Just over 5 kilometres in just under an hour.

I did manage to watch Insiders and Inside Business. Lots of stuff about the new government economic statement. There are more issues than I spotted in my glance at it (turned out to be 80 pages of figures). Then over to Meet the Press, which had shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey as a guest. No sign either side of politics are looking seriously at any long term issues. Just point scoring. They treat politics like a ping pong match.

Late in the evening, after the political fluff, I found a relatively recent movie called RED (retired extremely dangerous) with a bunch of ageing movie stars, lead by Bruce Willis. They must have had a fun time doing that.


Bad luck my weight is up. Good news is there are no sinful foods left in the house.

Why I do not use restaurants with tipping. Tipping typically unfair to some staff.


I did complete putting the screws in the first of the loud speaker stands. The wood is already drilled for the second stand, as I did that drilling at the same time as I drilled the first stand.

I assembled the second loud speaker stand during the course of the afternoon. Hit some knots in the wood, so I may need to add a few additional screws to ensure strength.

Next step is probably to sand off some off the rough edges. Or maybe mount them on casters.

Book of the Week

I read Dodger, by Terry Pratchett. Set in 19th Century Britain, it was surprisingly not one of his Disk World novels. However it had an enjoyable cast of historical characters from the time. I thought it was fun.

Retirement Villages Group

I see Bank of Scotland International (BOSI) selling A$190m in debt in FKP managed Retirement Villages Group (RVG), due in December. BOSI has been selling off 3.5B Australian debt for a while. RVG's entire A$533m portfolio was up for sale via Ernst and Young, with them hoping to realise A$30m to pay down debt ahead of refinancing their BOSI loan. There seems a general lack of interest in retirement village sales.

Stocklands wrote down its A$1B retirement portfolio in its annual results. Basically the carrying value of retirement villages absolutely sucks.

Monday 5 August 2013

Morning Shopping

I did wake up once during the night, but then got back to sleep. A beautiful clear day. I did not get up until 6 a.m.

My weight had gone down, to 70.3 kilograms. Considering how hungry I was yesterday in the early evening, that seemed almost reasonable.

A walk around Airlie Beach. The short way around Boathouse Apartment at the Marina. Then along the beach and around the lagoon. Then back through the town. The newsagent opens at seven, so I was able to get a copy of The Australian before tackling the hill back. Only a little over three kilometres in about 35 minutes.

Next is off in Jean's car, to Bunnings hardware. They open at 7:30 a.m. I have a little list. I sort of doubt I will manage to find the wood I want.

I actually did better than I thought on the wood from Bunnings, in some ways. After much sorting of the remaining 290mm wide radiata pine wood, I located six pieces that were not too bowed for me to compensate. Two were a slightly different length, but I was planning to cut two up for shelves. Alas, one remaining piece was very slightly shorter than the other three, so I may need to change plans again.

Found the 30mm caster wheels I wanted. Bought myself a new hand saw, a hacksaw, a hammer, and a glass cutter, so that may help on future projects. I also got some 3mm fluteboard, and some white cloth tape. Might help with a photo project.

A $6.90 desk lamp included an E27 screw base. Given these bases seem not to be for sale, and when they are cost over $20, I bought that. Pulling the lamp apart to salvage the parts is a pain, but it can be done.

There were several unobtainium items. No 8G 50mm chipboard screws. Someone had put the square drive version where the Philips style screw should have been. On the other hand, I could not find the wood coloured screw caps I wanted to hide my screws, so perhaps this will make no difference. Although someone must make the decorative screw caps, since a lot of furniture has them. Bunnings had the screw caps in white, but not any other colour. No Mort Bay colour change LED lights with remote control. Bruce looked it up on their computer, but as a line item, you can not be sure you have the exact item. He wrote down both the Bunnings and the Mort Bay stock number, so I will be able to check them.

Managed to forget to have breakfast when I visited the Centro Shopping Centre, but I did get fuel there. Ten cents cheaper than at the Coles petrol station that had a queue out to the street. I had noticed that is sometimes the case.

I located a Mort Bay colour change LED light with remote control in BigW. Just one. Now they are out of stock also.

Food shopping at Woolworths totalled less than ten bucks. How is my diet going for you retailers?


I lost the internet sometime in the afternoon. No response to a numeric ping. I power sequenced the Netgear ADSL modem at 6:05 p.m. Connection returned then.

Internet dropped out again at 10:25 p.m. This time I had a red dropout warning light on the Netgear ADSL modem. Power sequenced the modem again.

Internet out again at 10:35 p.m. Red modem light on. Power sequenced modem again.


I did not get a lot done today. My new wood is not totally suitable. So I can not start on that.

Went for a walk in the afternoon. Only a little over two kilometres. However it does bring me to over 12,000 steps for the day.


Keating had it right. Dump negative gearing on housing. #qanda

Dump first home buyers grant. If not for building a new home, certainly for existing homes. #qanda

If you do not have legal residence in Australia, why are you allowed to buy land here? Lease only. #qanda

Pathetic fucking internet connection. 700 metres from a #testra exchange. I might as well use smoke signals.

Buying and flipping houses is not productive. Tax the profit in full, just like wages.

Huge private debt, mostly for housing, kept money spinning around. Government spending is small by comparison.

Tuesday 6 August 2013


I awakened several times during the night, but then slept through until around six. By then it was starting to get light on a beautiful day.

My weight has dropped to 69.9 kilograms, after forgetting to eat during most of the previous day.

I set off for a walk around the Boathouse apartments, and the Marina beach. The sun was just showing above the hill when I reached the lagoon. Got to the newsagency a minute or two after it opened at seven, and collected a newspaper. Back home soon after that, having covered 5.15 kilometres in around 55 minutes.

Had a banana. Later had a couple of the small eggs scrambled with a heap of butter, and milk. A slice of left over pizza for lunch. Crumpets for dinner.


A slowdown on the internet after 1 p.m. So slow it is almost unusable. I have been trying to update a few apps via iTunes for 20 minutes now. Power cycled the Netgear ADSL modem. It speed up remarkably after it came up again.

Then internet connection failed again after less than a minute. I had to power sequence the ADSL modem again.

Reserve Bank Interest Rate Cut

A record low official interest rate of 2.5% after a drop of another quarter percent just decided by the Reserve Bank of Australia. The official interest rate has never been this low in the whole history of the Reserve Bank. This is almost equal to the current inflation rate of 2.4%. So if that is all you get for your savings, you are effectively paying to preserve your money. Many developed countries have official interest rates close to zero. So savers are being penalised by inflation, and there is no reward for risk. Meanwhile, lots of people are drowning in debt thanks to the housing asset bubble no one dares deflate.

The Reserve Bank story is low interest means a lower exchange rate (that seems right), which will mean a more competitive economy, which means more exports. Good for everyone. However thanks to mining and commodities, we already have high exports. Look at our terms of trade. Plus low returns should stimulate spending by consumers who are not getting much returns on their money.

Meanwhile, my confidence is gone. My story is low international demand and Australia importing far more consumer goods than it exports means much higher consumer inflation (fuel, electronics, building materials). So I got a shit load of imported stuff while the Australian dollar was worth more, and now do not intend to replace any of them.

If the economy is going so well, why are interest rates so low? The lower official interest rates go, the more nervous I get. Desperate for returns, savers will be looking at even dysfunctional and marginal investments. However with bugger all risk premium, I will instead take the easy way out of reducing my spending, so as to preserve my savings as long as possible.

Reducing Spending

I can not do much (yet) about ever increasing government charges such as rates, and water charges. I can not do much about Body Corporate and similar charges. These increases are far higher than nominal inflation.

I can not do much about vastly increased insurance charges, also well above inflation rates. Except perhaps taking a big risk and stop insuring.

I can not reduce my electricity use a vast amount, despite massive increases in charges. My use is now as low as I can easily manage. Next steps are avoiding air conditioning most of the time, and eating more cold meals instead of cooking.

Fuel costs are up substantially as the value of the dollar declines. The obvious response is to use Jean's car less. This in turn means less time in shopping centres. That should directly translate into lower spending in shops. If you never go shopping you don't spend much.

So far this year I have mostly avoided expensive holidays. We cancelled one previously booked holiday, although not primarily because of cost. Although we looked at vehicles, we declined to replace a car that would usually have been already replaced at about that age. A second car would have been really convenient at times, but is not going to happen. How is that working for hotels, tourism and automotive manufacturing?

Wednesday 7 August 2013


I arose at around 5:30 a.m. and checked the internet. Went for a three kilometre walk around the beach just before the sun rose above the hill. Collected a newspaper when the newsagency opened at 7 a.m.

My weight remained at 69.9 kilograms.

Crumpets for breakfast.

I drove Jean's car to Bunnings hardware. Got about half the items I was after, including the important piece, the length of wood I lacked. It sure took a long time to fail to find things I wanted.

Continued to the larger shopping centre. Checked Centro, without any luck at all in any of the shops. Gave up after a while.

Got a length of Osram RGB LED strip lights with remote control from LEW lighting. I want to experiment with under furniture lighting. I am too early to collect the glass Eglo light shades I ordered from them. They gave me little hope I could find the sort of magnetic light I want. I will have to continue to look for components that can be adapted to make what I want.


I had a message from Jean just before 1 p.m. Tried to check it on the computer, only to find that the internet was out of action. Red fail light on the Netgear ADSL modem.

Apple Messages

I had a totally failure of Apple Messages. Possibly related to the internet failure, complicated by Little Snitch. Grr. I removed Little Snitch, and rebooted the computer. I was then finally able to persuade Messages to work again.


I probably should not note it as cleaning, as it was more re-organising the rooms. I had put Jean's large stand under the TV, when I brought the TV here. That stand Jean had built had formerly been upright in the closet, out of the way. When I put the clothes rail and high shelf in the closet, I had to remove the stand. However as a result of the big stand being out there in the living room, it accumulated clutter, including the loud speakers. Since I was well on the way to building custom correct height loud speaker stands, I wanted to move the big dark wooden stand.

My problem was I was not sure it would fit back in the closet, due to having two half doors. I finally realised I could remove the desk height surface I had put in the closet, since nothing was nailed down to support that. This just gave me space to get the 1.8 metre long stand inside the closet, but this time horizontally. So it now makes up shelves on the floor at the back of the closet, under the desk height full width shelf.

I count that a win.

Thursday 8 August 2013


I woke up really early. Watched the stars for a while. Got up and started reading Twitter on my iPad around 4:30 a.m.

My weight remained 69.9 kilograms. One evolutionary side effect of waking early is craving fatty and sweet food. I opened a Coke. It is obvious the only solution to this is to never buy any soft drinks again. I have not bought any for months, but there was a stock of them.

Went for a walk around Airlie Beach. Stopped at the newsagency to collect newspapers. Distance just over 5 kilometres in just under 55 minutes. I doubt I can walk any faster. Especially once I hit the hill to return.


A failure of the internet connection around 8 a.m. after working fine previously. A red fault light on the Netgear ADSL modem. I power sequenced the modem. Internet back at 8:15 a.m. Ping is working. Web browsing is not. No, the problem seems to be Business Spectator is not working. Or is working so slow it seems as if it is not working. It eventually appeared. I think one issue is the Javascript that Business Spectator uses now grabs resources and ramps up my CPU activity.


I sanded down the new speaker stands I have been building. Decided I did have sufficient Estapol polyurethane to at least do a first coat of paint. So I did that when the sun was off the balcony. Alas, I did not have any turps for cleaning the brush, so I need to buy a packet of cheap paint brushes.

Added a paper tray to the construction inside the closet. This tray lifts off, so it can be nicely temporary. Most helpful, it got the tray out of my way for the moment.

13 Assassins Movie of the Week

I watched the 99 cent rental movie I had downloaded from iTunes almost a month ago. It was watch it or have it evaporate (as so often happens).

Japanese, with English subtitles, in high definition. A feudal lord goes gaga, starts killing the innocent, because he has the power. Thirteen warrior samurai are recruited to kill off the lord while he is journeying elsewhere. However he has over 200 warriors with him. Very bloody battle occupies most of the movie.

No indications of transfer speed issues when this streamed from my MacBook Air to my Apple TV, and via HDMI to my Dick Smith TV set. Sound was from Apple TV S/PDIF optical output (there is no audio line out, only HDMI), via an AudioEngine Digital to Analog converter, to my AudioEngine 5 speaker system. The speakers on the TV are absolute crap, as is typical for most TV sets.

Friday 9 August 2013

Shopping Today

I was up around 5:30 a.m. with a horrible hangover. This is really annoying, as I have not had a drink in over a week. I suspect the fumes from painting Estapol polyurethane on my new speaker stands is to blame.

My weight is down to 69.2 kilograms. On the other side, I went to bed a little hungry, and woke up very hungry. No crumpets or milk left in the place.

A walk around the foreshore, but only a little over three kilometres. Had breakfast on the main street while I read the Courier Mail.

Off to all the hardware stores in town, except Bunnings which I had already thoroughly checked. Home Hardware's owner managed to find me almost everything on my list, including a discounted can of satin Estapol polyurethane paint. I also checked Porters and had already checked Mitre 10. Well, two exceptions, no-one seems to have the Dremel router attachment I want. Alas, I could not get screw caps to cover my screw heads anywhere.

Checked Burnups furniture, since they were having a sale. Could not find anything remotely suitable for what I wanted, which is a pity. Almost everything they stock is large, and thus unsuited to small apartments. They do not have lamps.

Nothing for me in Centro. I did go to Woolworths for food. With my much more restricted diet, I got about $8 of food, milk, fruit and tomatoes (technically they may be a fruit) and that was it this week. In the past my purchases in Woolworths or Coles were over $30, enough to get a fuel discount. New addition is carrots, in an attempt to reduce my snacking. However I think the only thing that will really reduce my snacking is to refuse to buy any snack foods.

Cleaning Gutter

I attempted to use the gutter extension Jean got to clear the gutters. That was an utter and complete failure. Any attempt to run sufficient water pressure through the hose risked flooding the apartment with leaks. I could not tell whether the extension was anywhere near the right bits of the gutter. The plants in the gutter did not move in the slightest. I need access to an outside standpipe, where a bit of excess water leaking will not cause major problems.


I had another internet failure at 10:10 p.m. The Netgear ADSL modem was showing a red failure light. I power sequenced the modem. Internet started working again.


I added several small right angle galvanised steel nailing plates to the frame of the construction in the closet. I positioned them so they were mostly out of sight behind the frame. This gave me five different places at two levels where a light could be magnetically attached. I must find more places to add such steel plates. Just using the fridge for magnets is not sufficient.

Used superglue to make ten less unattractive metal bases from a couple of different sized washers. They can be attached to walls with a self tapping plaster screw.

Sanded and then put a second coat of satin Estapol on the two loudspeaker stands I built.

Saturday 10 August 2013


I got up around 5:35 a.m. No point in trying to get more sleep by then. It was cool outside, after a clear night. Inside is still 21 to 22°C. However outside is a chilly 16°C. I am not going out there for a while.

Checked email, and caught up with Business Spectator. I try to get rid of the Business Spectator pages I open fairly quickly. Their Javascript ramps up my computer fans too much to want their items open.

My weight went back up to 69.8 kilograms.

Since it was cold, and I only had to go to the markets, I waited until almost eight before leaving. The only political stands out there at the markets were LNP and The Greens. Jonathan was as usual helping at the Greens. I also came across Josie elsewhere. No sign of Labor, or other minor parties.

Caught up with Alison while I was waiting to collect my breakfast bacon and egg. Saw Glenn. Later I saw a very busy Rex, getting coconuts ready. Mark was with him, and I met Mark's mother for the first time. Mark says he is moving to Cannonvale. No sign of Michael, who I did expect to see. The only things I bought were a mint plant, and a DVD.

Collected the newspapers. Then I went to the now open BWS, and bought some beer for Jonathan at my party. I hope he likes Coopers Sparkling Ale.

Shit, at least 46 items of email today that were not spam. Don't these people have a life?


I was having problems collecting email at 5:40 a.m. Numeric ping packages were timing out around 25% of the time, so obviously web pages would not work. I power sequenced the Netgear ADSL modem, although it was not showing an issue at the time. That fixed the ping timeouts. Web access came good also.


I added casters to the two loudspeaker stands. Except for some extra finishing touch ups, that completes the first two stands.

I pressed them into use supporting a couple of the cube lights I built. This is just to see what they look like at that height, and on a stand that size. I think it will work well.


I had my usual Saturday party. Pete and Dawn arrived first, and then Glenn and Alison. I had just handed them drinks when Jonathan and Josie arrived, closely followed by Rex, who brought Ted. He also brought Venus, a downstairs neighbour. She had been doing tennis with Rex earlier. She later returned with her partner (and some nice home made cup cakes), so we had a good roll up of eleven at the party.

I had brought Jean's 20 shirts down with me, so I could photograph them. I also wanted to show the to Alison, who makes a lot of Glenn's clothes.

Not being sure what we would get through, I ordered four family pizza and four garlic bread. I ended up with a heap of pizza left over, and some garlic bread. Way too many calories I suspect.

We got through a magnum of champagne, and part of an extra bottle. Plus the majority of three bottle of Pepperjack Shiraz. I pressed the remains of that into Rex's hands, so he could enjoy it later. He had been drinking orange juice all evening, since he was driving.

That was a neat party, even if I did not manage to chat with anyone for sufficiently long.

I did not get to bed until fairly late, since I did tidy up a lot of the place after the party. Also checked email late.

Sunday 11 August 2013


I was awake early, and got up at five. Restarted the internet, which had failed overnight. I do have a mild hangover.

My weight was 69.8 kilograms, despite the excesses of pizza at the party.

Only a short walk of a couple of kilometres this morning, ending when I collected the newspaper. Food was a disaster. I had pizza and garlic bread left over from the party.

Two loads of laundry done, which at least gets that out of the way.


I had a red internet failure light on the Netgear ADSL modem before five. I power sequenced the modem. Internet came back.

International Space Station

I went outside on my balcony at 5:28 a.m. and watched the International Space Station (ISS) make a four minute pass to the south. It was pretty bright at its peak. As it went behind the apartment I could only just sight it over the top of the roof. However going out the entrance to the south would not have worked due to the stairway lighting. That would have drowned any chance of a view.

Book of the Week

I read WWW:Watch by Canadian science fiction author Robert J Sawyer. I believe I read part of this in Analog some time ago. An emerging intelligence in the internet. A blind girl whose computer mediated sight provides a link to the human world. This is a sequel to WWW:Wake, which may be the story I recall from Analog. I enjoyed it, and now wonder about whether we already have the third novel, WWW:Wonder.

Monday 12 August 2013


I was up at 5:20 a.m. There is a small cruise liner anchored out there in Pioneer Bay, so there will be market stalls on the foreshore. The sky is partly overcast, for the first time in several days. Despite this, the sun soon started streaming in during the morning. It ended up clear during the day.

My weight remains unchanged at 69.8 kilograms.

I had left over garlic bread from the party for breakfast. I had managed to miss that early on Sunday, and so only had half of it yesterday. Plus a drink of hot chocolate. So much for my diet. Later I had scrambled eggs for lunch. That was mostly because I managed to damage the shells on two of them. Drank a Coke with that, which I should not have done. I have very few Coke left.

I went for a walk on the main street. Only a short one. I checked the hairdresser a couple of times, but they were full each time. Checked the Markets, and had a chat with Glenn. Then walked around the lagoon to see how the footpaths were going. Not complete, but closer.

I did another walk in the late afternoon. Mostly checking the Woolworths site. I dropped into the BWS. This time the Pepperjack Shiraz for my parties was two for $40. That is much better than the $31 it was a while back. Since I am down to one bottle (and used three last party) I better get some.

Woolworths Site

I checked the Woolworths site in the middle of Airlie Beach early in the day. I knew they were planning to raise the cast in site concrete walls today. There was a giant crane on site. A couple of walls had already been raised. I watched part of another wall slab being set in place.

Another walk in the afternoon, also to check Wolworths. They were putting another slab in place. The sun angles were not as good for photos, but I took a few regardless. They had about a dozen wall slabs sited. Looked like there were a dozen to go. I guess I better check the site early tomorrow.


I was not able to update Moves on my iPhone when I returned from my afternoon walk. Checked the Netgear ADSL modem. The red internet failure light was on. I power sequenced the modem. That got the internet connecting again.


I wasted a lot of time in the morning trying to get the labels off the radiata pine. The only thing that seems to remove the glue is metho, and I keep a bottle here just to cope with that.

I marked up the second set of boards with the cut marks for the shelves. I figure the sooner I start them, the sooner I can decide if I am taking the first set complete set of loudspeaker stands with me.

Airlie Beach Yacht Race

I gather the Airlie Beach yacht race started early this morning. The other marina is where I do not see it. I would imagine the Sailing Club would be jumping each evening. I chatted with a couple of yacht owners who were here for the winter. These folks are helping save the town.


How about we all just ignore all the media (and all the politicians)? #qanda

If Murdoch media has 70% of the media, maybe 70% of people prefer it that way? #qanda

Maybe governments should completely butt out of the bedroom? #qanda

When will the States get the Income Tax power back, so they can afford their commitments? #qanda

How come #NBN offers maximum of 100mbps at the moment? 1gbps comes later? #lateline

How about getting someone who can understand what Turnbull is saying about NBN capacity? #Lateline

It sounds like when NBN hits my area (sometime after 2020), I might as well dump my fixed line connection. #lateline

I have a 4 year old Greenfield fibre optic connection, that only serves me a TV signal. It stopped working in December. Reliable? #lateline

NBN Debate

A discussion of the proposed National Broadband Network (NBN) with new communications minister Anthony Albanese, and opposition spokesman Malcolm Turnbull.

Who would pay a 9% per year increase for a decade to have NBN? It would be worse than the electricity increases. Average revenue per month per customer $62 per month by 2020. Plus whatever your ISP wants from you, probably including a phone connection I do not need. So that would run something over $100.

I suspect I would probably be dumping at least one connection at that point.

Tuesday 13 August 2013


I was awake with a hangover at 4 a.m. Considering I had not had anything to drink, this was not a good result. I got up and started using the iPad to read Twitter around 4:30 a.m. Had the tag end last of the left over garlic bread, and a mug of hot chocolate.

My weight is up, this time it is 70.2 kilograms. Damn!

Went for a walk while the sun was rising. A short walk intended, but it actually ended up over four kilometres. Jean started sending messages to me around this time. After collecting a newspaper, I took a few photos of the Woolworths site once the rising sun was illuminating it. They have 13 wall panels up.

Headed off for Bunnings hardware with my shopping list. I could not find sufficiently small peg board. Could not find the Homelite pressure sprayer (Townsville seem to have 30 of them). Could not find the potting mix, but maybe I can just dig some soil from the garden. However they did have a single Grange lamp, and as these are heavy I got one while I had the car. I also found a 200mm frosted glass batten lamp shade. Maybe I can subvert that for my magnetic base lamp. I bought it for test purposes.

Centro was a bit of a waste. Nothing found, except at Woolworths. Got a few bananas for breakfasts, and some Dick Smith tomato sauce. Total cost $4. This is not exactly a statement of confidence in business, is it?

I saw Green Energy Technologies. I want to start working on how to get solar panels into the Whitsunday Terraces. They did not hide in fright, so that is a good start.

Had some apple and strawberry as a second course for breakfast. Then it was time for a second walk.

I got some extra photos of the Woolworths site. The construction crew were not going as well as they hoped with their concrete slabs, which meant the giant crane was likely to be delayed. They had around half the slab walls raised. Normally they expect to get each raised in perhaps as little as 15 minutes, with a half hour a good result. They had problems with at least one slab, the last for the previous day, and now the first for today.

Off to the barber, where I got a somewhat needed haircut. Very soon after I got there (just as the barber was returning) two more people came in. I got lucky.

More photos of the Woolworths site before I walked up the hill again. It really is amazing how quick the construction is done.


I did not seem to have an internet connection when I returned at 10 a.m. The Netgear ADSL modem had a red error light for internet. I power sequenced the modem. Internet was back a few minutes later.

Internet fails again at 1 p.m. Netgear ADSL modem not showing a problem light. The internet is an unreliable piece of shit. Power sequenced the modem. Internet is back.


It had been still, without wind, for much of the day. Not so good for the yacht races. Luckily for them, a bit of breeze eventually developed.

Alas for me, by the time I set up to spray stove black paint on my Coke cans, there was a slight breeze. This was not helpful for making sun absorbent surfaces with spray paint.

I made myself a couple of open face ham, tomato and melted cheese toasties for lunch. However it was rather late before I got around to it.

Earlier in the day I had forgotten I needed to restock my red wine. I took my pack and went for a walk to BWS. It now had Pepperjack Shiraz at $20 each in quantity, so I bought a box of it for my next two parties. That walk also let me get more photos of the Woolworths construction.

Book of the Week

Wednesday 14 August 2013


I awoke around five, and started checking Twitter. Jean sent an early Message, so I spent a lot of time conversing with her. I also managed to make myself some hot chocolate pretty early.

My weight was down to 69.6 kilograms.

My 6:30 a.m. walk took me around Boathouse, along the Marina beach, and around the lagoon. I took a few more photos of the Woolworths construction, after collecting The Australian newspaper. Total distance was over 5.5 kilometres, in under an hour.

Had scrambled eggs for breakfast.

Did woodwork for a fair bit of the day. Mid afternoon I finally got around to getting a bunch of photos of the twenty shirts Jean has made for me. The timer seems to need to be reset after each photo, which was a bit of a pain. I had to wait until the sun was in the right position.

It seemed to take me forever to complete reading the newspaper. I checked eTax using the old iMac. It is not able to use that program. Pity.

Pete dropped over late afternoon. He had asked about getting advice on connecting a very old video camera to his TV. I think I was able to give helpful advice. We sat around drinking in the view (and some champagne) for a while as well.


I completed marking up the uprights for the second set of loud speaker stands. Did several sessions of drilling the screw holes. Then countersunk the exposed side for the screw heads. I basically let the drill cool down pretty often, mostly because drilling is boring.

Risk Free Return Free Risk

At one stage Government debt, in the form of bonds, was considered a risk free return. However governments have defaulted, especially in Third World countries. The whole existence of the Euro, and the crash of no longer sovereign countries within the Euro zone means there is a vast range of questionable government debt from First World countries.

So many governments are in debt (most of them in fact), and interest rates are now so likely to be zero bound that government debt could better be considered a return free risk.

Open Ended Promises

A decade ago, Peter Costello tried to set funding aside in the Future Fund for unfunded public service superannuation. However governments everywhere continue to make unfunded and open ended health and pension promises to an ever larger and ever ageing population.

However these promises can only be met if you have continued growth, which itself almost certainly only be met by an expansion of the number of workers. The ratio of available workers to supplicants continues to decline. All the promises of future help will mean nothing if the number of workers available are insufficient for the tasks demanded.

Thursday 15 August 2013


I was awake before five, which is not really a good start to the day. I got up and read Twitter on my iPad, because that was about all I was capable of doing at that hour.

My weight remained steady at 69.6 kilograms, despite having drunk champagne with Pete yesterday afternoon.

Took a morning walk around the Marina, and past the lagoon. Not really trying for distance, but did manage over 4.5 kilometres. No more major changes at the Woolworths site. Collected a newspaper yet again. Reading the papers wasted a fair bit of time. I must stop bothering.

Had scrambled eggs for breakfast, as I attempted to use up the last of them. A couple of slices of cheese, which finished that.

Jean messaged me several times. Her flight left about a half hour late, sometime after three my time, and late in the evening in San Francisco. I do not expect to hear from her now until around even next morning when her plane lands in Sydney.

I put five loads of (mostly) recycling into her car around four. I had put the original loud speaker stands I had built in the car. I am not exactly ready to use them at Carlyle Gardens, but having them will be an incentive to work on my room. Not as convenient as I hoped, but I am not sure when I will again have her car.

Pete dropped over to try out his new camera from the balcony at sunset. These cameras sure do seem complicated.

David unexpectedly phoned me, from his office. He must be pretty relaxed, as he chatted for ages. We had been exchanging emails about some friends of his visiting on a yacht.

I watched ST:DS9 while I got scanning of old papers done. Still way behind, of course.


I had problems opening two web sites Jean recommended, trying at 11:25 a.m. Ping is working, with no packet loss. However the Safari web browser is reporting that I am not connected to the internet. That also took my email offline. Grump!

Looks like BigPond dumped my connection, and then took a while to bring it back.


I contemplated the Home Hardware advertising flyer with their Father's Day promotions of tools, toolchests and the like. I was particularly taken by the idea of the toolchest. This was because in the past two days I had taken almost everything out of a drawer and a cupboard, seeking some tool that was actually elsewhere.

The first thing I need is probably a pretty standard carpenter toolbox.

Finally decided that anything I bought would probably be a waste of space. Decided I would design my own tool box, and build it using scrap wood from bookcases. Once more bookcases are surplus to my needs, I should have sufficient wood for some styles of projects.

Meanwhile, I finished screwing together the second set of loudspeaker stands. These were not as good, as the radiata pine is pretty warped. I must get myself a drafting square. The cut wood is not always square. A quick check would be better than finding out when I get it home. However they can sit for a while, in the hope the screws will help straighten the wood. I still need to add casters, clean some of the surfaces, and Estapol the wood.

Segway Legal in Qld

I am delighted that the Segway personal transporter electric vehicle is now legal to use in Queensland. Transport Minister Scott Emerson agreed to them being used on footpaths and bikeways. This was totally against the widely expressed displeasure of the bureaucrats in the Transport department.

Now we just need to have them a legal vehicle in Australia, given the Commonwealth does not allow them (the electric motors exceed the legal limit). How can Australia be a smart country if we can not experiment with decent electric vehicles.

Alas, if you do not have footpaths or bike paths you are still stuck. You can not travel more than 50 metres on a road. I do not have footpaths or bike paths anywhere near me. Bummer!

Friday 16 August 2013

Leaving Airlie Beach

I was awake before four, so I got away around 4:40 a.m. A lot of mist, at least as far as Bowen. So it was slow getting even that far. There were those annoying automatic traffic lights at several places where the Bruce Highway is reduced to a single lane.

Comfort stop at Home Hill, which has the best facilities. I knew the bakery towards the outskirts was often open early. So I went to the Home Hill bakery and got three old fashioned apple slices, which I think are the best ones along that stretch of the highway.

I was not pulling into Townsville until after eight, which makes a long drive.

Arriving in Townsville

I diverged to the IGA. None of the milk I like. I did get some Neenish tarts, as a consolation prize. So I tried the Coles at Willows. Again no milk. I did get $20 of fruit, including orange juice. In a fit of either optimism or stupidity, I managed to put them all through the self scan line insead of finding once of their nice check out clerks.

It was nearly nine by then, so I drove to the egg shop. Got two dozen giant eggs, after negotiating a fair queue of cars. Then to the Rasmussen IGA. Saw Blue in the car park, and said hello. This IGA did have the Misty Mountain milk that I was looking for. That seemed close enough to a proper shopping expedition.

At Carlyle Gardens I collected a bunch of mail. Not impressed by mail, although most belonged to Jean.

Duncan later came over and dropped off a Royal Mail parcel he had collected. This contained a Shaka air speed measurement device that plugs into an iPhone.


My weight was 69.2 according to the scales at Airlie Beach. At Townsville the scales identified me as 68.6 kilograms. That was good.

Jean Returns

I set off well after one to collect Jean. First stop at the chemist to collect my prescription drugs. They had a petition complaining about Australian government actions on community chemists. I had not heard of that.

Next was Loot, since they were having a closing sale. As expected, I saw nothing that attracted me. Beacon Lighting, who, like LEW, told me the lights I wanted did not exist. Finally tried Bunnings, only to discover they did not have any of the Mort Bay colour change light globes with remote. At least I got three more of their cheap magnetic back flashlights.

I finally managed to locate the DHL office, in a shipping container at the back of a lot, down a side street, off another street. The package they had not been able to deliver turned out to the the Slope aluminium iPhone and iPad stands I got via Kickstarter.

Social Evening

I vacillated between attending the regular Social Club Friday evening, or sulking at home. Finally managed to bestir myself. Wandered around chatting with different people. I must set up Ray with wireless networking. Geoff sold me tickets for a painting, plus there was the Sunday pizza and ice cream event, plus the regular Social Club fund raisers. Sure seems like my hand was always in my wallet. I did win a bottle of wine for my efforts.

Two glasses of champagne seem to have really knocked me around. I did have fish and chips for dinner, so it was not like I did not eat. I suspect I need to really cut down on wine even more, if it has such an effect.

Saturday 17 August 2013


I woke up real early. Used the computer for a while. I took a morning walk, and dropped the accumulated Whitsunday Times newspapers off at Neil's place.

We went to Willows, specifically so Jean could spend up big at Coles, and get a big discount fuel coupon. We went over a hundred dollars, and thus got 30 cents a litre off on fuel. It usually is not worth while making that sort of a spending effort, but we had not restocked anything in over a month, so it was not hard.

I tried to wash off the front of the car when we returned, in an attempt to remove the smell from whatever decomposing body I ran over yesterday on the way here. It took a while to find nozzles for the hoses. Found a small brown frog on one hose, so I had to leave that until the frog departed.

Finally got around to ordering a swag of long neglected items via the internet. Some black microfibre bags for phones and glasses. More WakaWaka solar power lights and chargers. An Akubra Arena hat.


I had a complaint from Jean that her iPad was not getting internet. She had switched to her computer, and rebooted FastGnome. My iPad was also losing TimeGnome, and reverting to 3G cellular. Could not see what was wrong using the computer. We had a connection, and ping and traceroute both said it was fine. The Ethernet hub indicated everything was connected. Finally shut down the Belkin ADSL connection including the router, and both wireless access points. That seemed to restore peace and connectivity.

Runkeeper Annoyances

I suddenly had my Runkeeper reports turning up on Twitter, something I had long ago cancelled. This seemed associated with the annoying changes to Runkeeper on the latest iteration of the iOS app. It is way too easy to accidentally start a link to Twitter (or Facebook). However there does not seem any method in the iOS app to switch that back off! I was royally pissed.

Electricity Prices

I hate the way electricity prices keep rising. This is not mainly caused by the Carbon Tax. Electricity prices at the competitive generator have been mostly stable, or even a little cheaper. Even retailers are reasonably competitive, despite a tendency to overspend on sales. The added costs are mostly in distribution prices set by the Australian Energy Regulator (AER). This situation was caused by the Howard Government trying to fix energy distribution in 2005, including ensuring the network was robust. The Standing Committee of Energy Ministers (NSW, Qld, SA and Victoria, plus Federal) outlines rules and appoints the Australian Energy Markets Commission to make general rules for prices and profits for the Australian Energy Regulator to set for monopoly power grid companies like Ausgrid, Energex, and Ergon. One thing they price in is the technical standards needed to avoid blackouts and brownouts.

The result was an enormous decline in productivity in the electricity distribution monopoly, despite investment spending that should peak at $50 billion. The AER rules are required to assume expenditure is efficient. So there is an incentive to gold plate a network that is larger than really needed. Assumed interest rates (up to 9%) are far higher than government guaranteed distributors actually pay, especially in a low interest environment. Borrowing costs make up to half the cost base for distribution networks, so this is an important factor. In addition, distributor five year forward estimates of future demand are often wildly high, with little allowance for reduced demand as prices increase. The result is a very robust and reliable network, but the costs are very high.

No politician is happy with blackouts and brownouts, because they tend to get blamed. So they are not likely to encourage lower technical standards. You need to remember that up to a quarter of all electricity infrastructure is used less than 1% of the time. That is a large cost to bullet proof the network. The standard now is around three hours of power outage per year. I am sort of hoping for changes in the next five year round, starting 2014. I certainly do not expect prices to rise as much in the next five year period.

In essence, increased distribution prices are already doing the job a carbon tax is designed to do, namely reduce demand. However there is no incentive for generators to switch to higher cost lower emission technologies.

Sunday 18 August 2013


I was awake early. Jean being still set on a different time zone was also awake early. We were both wandering around the house before five. I set the laundry going at five, since the annoying ecologically sound washing machine takes hours to do anything.

My weight this morning was 69 kilograms.

I took an early morning walk around Carlyle Gardens. About 2.5 kilometres in about 25 minutes. Jean had put the laundry out, however it was mostly her own, so I did not feel too bad about it. I set another load of laundry working. We put that out just before nine. Meanwhile, I had notived the smell in the garage had decreased. I think I may still need to wash the underside of Jean's can again, but the smell is much improved.

We both walked over to the Carlton Theatre. I helped with setting up chairs and stuff for the Social Club event in the evening. That made a good excuse for a walk.

I placed my order with PrintZone for more toner for the Brother printer. I ordered a complete set, as the prices were much better than at BigW, where I had previously bought an emergency black toner. I figure I will be doing some colour printing for a while.

Ordered a decent Fujitsu SnapScan sheet feed scanner. I really liked the first one I bought. Having one always available should really help get rid of paper quicker on my path to working paperless.

A carrot for lunch did not sound enough, even if I was looking forward to pizza and ice cream for dinner. So I had a Neenish tart for dessert. Mid afternoon I realised it was not near enough to stop from being hungry. I really wish large meals were not at night.

I walked over to the social club swan song event, as did Jean. Good exercise for us both.


No internet connection via the Belkin ADSL modem router early this morning. No ping or traceroute. On inspection of the connection in the garage, there was no low speed Ethernet signal from the router being indicated on the Ethernet hub. I do not think I have ever seen this particular fault previously. I power sequenced the Belkin modem router. Internet connection came back a few minutes later.

Social Club Event

It was the last event by the present members of the Carlyle Gardens Social Club. Even if I did not love pizza and ice cream, I still would have felt I should support it. I went over early in the day to help get chairs and tables out.

Security Light

I noticed that the security light at the front door had failed (much like the one at the back had failed) after about 2 years. I am not at all convinced there is any merit in having a replacement that will fail within a few months.

Social Club Party

I thought that the social club members were very brave at their swan song event. They were dressed as swans. I was very taken with Geoff as a black swan.

For some reason people were more hungry than usual. I gpot two slice of pizza on the first round (three pizza per table). The social club committee ordered more, and I later got another slice. The ice cream helped. Meanwhile, I managed to buy four glasses of champagne from Dave at the outside bar. That made me thoroughly tipsy.

Our neighbours Holger and Lexi had returned midday. I had not even noticed their arrival.

Monday 19 August 2013


I was awake early. We were both up and about by five, which probably was not all that good.

My weight is up to 69.2 kilograms. All that champagne.

Walked over to the Carlton Theatre before eight, along with Jean. I stayed there and put away about seven of the big round tables, after cleaning them all.

Walked to the Reading Cinema about 9:30 a.m., with Jean accompanying me as far as the entrance to carlyle Gardens. Had two offers of lifts of Beck Drive, but I do the walk for exercise. I walked back again after the movie. That was about six kilometres in total. Too hot for such a distance, despite being winter. Did not get back until around 1 p.m.

Keep falling asleep. Not helped by Jean falling asleep at an early hour in the afternoon.

I need to plot what to do about clearing some of the stuff in the garage.

After fruit and cereal for breakfast, I had chicken and cranberry sandwich for a late lunch. Neenish tart and a Coke for dinner. I will soon run out of Coke, and do not intend to buy more.

The Wolverine

I enjoyed this Marvel Comics based adventure of their Wolverine character. They seemed to work at getting a decent amount of plot into the story, without letting the special effects carry everything. Not that they didn't have some wonderful stunts.

Computer Club iMac

I had a visit from Laurie, telling me that the Carlyle Gardens computer club had purchased a second hand Apple iMac computer. Sounds like setting it up correctly with admin and multiple ordinary standard accounts would be a good move. Eventually, an external backup drive for Time Machine backups.

How to Save

If any automatic savings mechanism (direct deposit to savings, superannuation) is available, use it. The easiest money to save is money you have not seen.

Diversify your investments among different asset classes. Be adventurous when young, caution when old. If a tax advantage is available, such as via superannuation, you probably should use it.

Buying individual equities or items is a mug's game. The person on the other side of the table always knows more than you do. If you can not pick who the sucker is on a poker game, then it is you.

Save 20% of what you make. Imagine you earn 20% less, and work with that. If really impossible, start by saving a dollar a week, and work up. Saving is a habit you must start early.

Pay off credit cards in full every month. No exceptions. If you can not afford it, don't buy it. Credit cards are for your convenience, or for emergencies.

Fees and taxes came straight off the top of your savings results. Pay attention to them. Make sure you get value for what you pay.

Promote programs that protect people who have failed for reasons that are not their fault. Insurance rather than handouts. Emergency relief rather than sit down money. This is a political statement, not savings advice. Remember, anyone can fail when conditions are poor, even you.

Tuesday 20 August 2013


I was awake early, and Jean even earlier. We had a little discussion of shopping, as there are a few things we want that can be obtained from BigW. We did not get around to doing any of it.

My weight is 69 kilograms. A minor decrease from yesterday.

I went for a three kilometre walk around Carlyle Gardens, taking less than 30 minutes. Jean messaged me to say she wanted to get rid of the old eggs as scrambled eggs. So that was breakfast when I returned.

Off to the restaurant. They had rack of lamb available, so that is what I had. Plus a glass of merlot. So much for a diet. Present were Sue, Dot, Ray and Jeff, with John arriving soon after me. A full table. I think Sue left her glasses case behind.

Jean had an ant emergency in her bathroom. While she laid down surface spray insecticide inside, I used ant sand poison outside. Ran out of the old ant sand, and moved to the next half used container. Luckily I had bought more when we shopped.

We went checking for mail late in the afternoon. Our neighbours were having their usual afternoon drinks in the cool next to their house. We waved to them, but were intent on doing a walk. No actual mail, only flyers.


While Jean had the car away I cleared some stuff in the garage. Got bored with that well before completing it. I did put little piles of pine wood in size order, for future woodworking use. Still two whole bays of stuff to be cleared before I can move enough to get a third bay in place. This may take a while.

Wednesday 21 August 2013


A late morning. I heard Jean's alarm go off at six. I checked with her about laundry, and then started the washing machine.

My weight was still 69 kilograms.

We put out the laundry before eight, and then had breakfast. Jean once again cooked scrambled eggs, which she had with buttered toast. However she had told me she wanted a rack of lamb for lunch, if she could sneak into the restaurant without having to talk with anyone.

Despite the weather forecast, it is overcast. The laundry will take longer to dry than anticipated.

I walked over to the police event at the Carlton Theatre. Pretty much the expected questions. More than usual from the police on how we could assist them. They have some new pamphlets regarding options for communicating with them. Political speech, unconnected with policing, by someone who can not get the office to pay attention. Sigh!

Jean was very keen on having a rack of lamb for lunch. However my StarTrack toner delivery had not arrived, despite being on board at 9 this morning. I walked back, put a notice outside the door, and ordered our meal for midday. We took over a bottle of Pepperjack Shiraz, since Jean would not drink any of the other reds likely to be on offer. We had a very nice rack of lamb each, and were the only people in the restaurant, until Jerry arrived.

Liz phoned me from the office. My toner from PrintZone had been delivered to Reception, as I expected. I carried the box of four Brother toner cartridges back with me. It was, as Liz had suggested, inconveniently bulky.

Movie Download

The movie I had set downloading at 10:30 p.m. the previous evening was complete. I had been awake during the night and at 2:30 a.m. it was half downloaded, with four hours to go. So I guess it took almost eight hours to download 4.13GB. However the connection had not dropped out overnight.


I had modified my ANZAPA zine slightly to use it for FLAP. Luckily only a dozen copies of ten pages are needed for FLAP. I started printing right after breakfast. So far the printer has not caused problems. The last of the pages started printing around 9:30 a.m.

Pub Meeting

I went to the pub around four, that being the usual time for that group to meet. No sign of Ian, but Jeff was there, and Ron and Ray turned up. Jeff had opinions about the likely composition of the new Social Club (I know nothing). Jeff was also totally correct about the first Dr Who. I had the order in reverse. Ray had been reading of the attempted Mongol invasions of Japan and what is now Indonesia. Certainly not something I encountered at school.

Finished off the bottle of Pepperjack. Had too much to drink, especially for a person giving up on most alcohol. Jeff wanted to have a chat for a while, which we did.

Thursday 22 August 2013


I did not sleep well. Eventually got up at 3 a.m. since I was otherwise just tossing and turning. I am not reacting well to alcohol, in terms of getting rest afterwards. These days I do not drink alcohol except at social events. The problem is too many regular social events.

My weight has gone down to 68.5 kilograms. I can not understand that, given I did have a rack of lamb for lunch the past two days. Plus I drank excessive alcohol at the pub yesterday. Sometimes the weight results from the scales make absolutely no sense to me.

I did some reading online, before walking to the movies. Jean was away when I returned just before two, so I had chilli and cheese, Managed to mostly avoid corn chips. I cleared a little more stuff from the shelves in the garage, since Jean's car was not in the way.


I did not even manage to commence printing FAPA today.

Movie Elysium

I walked to the Reading Cinema for the eleven o'clock session of Elysium. Same director as District 9. The poor keep trying to reach Elysium, for pie in the sky and free medical care. Jodie Foster made a great carpet chewing villain. I thought it very well done. Glimpsed Lewis Morley's name late in the credits.

Carlyle Gardens Social Club

I walked over to the Carlton Theatre in the late afternoon for the Carlyle Gardens Social Club quarterly meeting and annual general meeting. The meeting went along smoothly, with the excellent financial accounts all explained.

The new committee were not facing competition, so there was no need for an election. I do not know all of them, but it does include several live wires. I hope they have an enjoyable time. I also hope that the residents appreciate all the work involved.

Afterwards Geoff showed me some of the extensive range of new audio wiring he has installed in the Carlton Theatre. Many new runs of cable through the ceiling space. many custom cables for musical instruments. There is also a wonderful range of theatrical lighting now in place. Weeks and weeks of work in that. I am very impressed.

I had a couple of glasses of champagne, one before and one after the meeting. Allen even brought us some chips, which was very kind of him.

Friday 23 August 2013


I was again awake early, around 4 a.m. Not happy with this lack of sleep, as i was tired last night. Also my right knee is aching, either from the walking or bad sitting posture. Not impressed. Eventually had some cereal with banana and strawberries for breakfast.

My weight is up again, to 69.1 kilograms. I did think the previous 68.5 was anomalous.

Went shopping in the morning.

I walked over to the restaurant for lunch. Present were Sue and Ray, with Dot just arriving. I was able to once again get a rack of lamb, which was a great treat.

Walked over to the restaurant with Jean towards evening, for what is probably the last of the social events in the restaurant. The sewing group were doing their fund raiser, and it did take a little longer than the usual social club event. I chatted with various folks throughout the early evening. I saw Bruce and Geri,


I started printing the first of 36 extra pages for FAPA. Before long the printer was claiming I was short of toner, this time the cyan. We shall see how much I can print before the problem becomes apparent. For the next page I selected 18 pages, without seeing any loss of quality. I guess I will take a chance at another 18 pages.

The printer stopped after 124 pages, midway through page 7. However I can not easily get at the toner container. The printer is on a high shelf, for lack of other space. I can not open it sufficient to replace the cyan toner cartridge until I can take it down from that shelf.

So I had to find some steps, climb up, disconnect the cables, and get the printer down to the floor. This is not a viable long term option as I get older. Luckily the replacement is easy enough once the printer internals can be reached. Put it back on the high shelf, reconnect everything. Send the print command again. I now have the first side of five sheets printed.

I really need to find a better place to put the printer.


We set off for the somewhat more distant Stockland shopping centre down Ross River Road around 7:45 a.m. This time we found the parking area we wished without ending up in their loading dock.

Alas, virtually no store there at Stockland was actually open in the morning. So we did some slow walking, which is our default activity in mostly empty shopping centres. BigW opened at 8:30 a.m. We could not find any of the things on our shopping list, at BigW. We did not better anywhere else.

Somewhat after nine, we were able to enter Myers. To their credit, staff in Myers greeted us wherever we went. Myers had been on our shopping list since it opened. Last (and first) visit we were foiled by a fire alarm sending us out. Alas, despite having a large credit burning a hole in my pocket, I found nothing I wanted. It did not really even look like I would find anything that interested me. What is this about Myers? It seems popular enough in Victoria.

So I think that is our annual visit to Stockland, concluded without actually managing to buy anything.

Stopped at Mitre 10 hardware on the way home. Jean wanted some of the cheap brooms they had advertised in their flyer (our existing brooms were falling apart). I wanted some Prestige screw caps in pine colour, for my loudspeaker stands. I had failed to find these in four hardware stores in the Whitsundays. I also wanted some potting mix. Found all of these at the little Mitre 10 at Sunland, so that was $22 of shopping.

We stopped at the Townsville glass place. They checked the sample shelf I had in the car. They can cut the glass shelves I have. Cost is $88 an hour, and they estimate less than an hour. That sounds like a plan. Once I work out exactly what I want to do with those shelves.

Saturday 24 August 2013


I was probably awake early, but did not get up until after five. We had a bunch of small items to run through the laundry, so started that going around 5:30 a.m. As a result the first load was hanging out to dry by 7:30 a.m. wehad our scrambled eggs, and were ready to leave before eight.

My weight is unchanged at 69.1 kilograms.

Off to Willow shopping centre. Jean found the things on the Woolworths list easily. I took them to her car and met her at Coles. That was also OK, with everything located. We split up. I checked BigW. Nothing on my list available. Jean did find shorts in Target.

I cleared a certain amount of stuff from the shelves in the garage. Sure takes a long while when the garage is a 16 puzzle with no vacant spaces.

I did remember to put the potting mix in a large rectangular tray, and put the mint plant in it. Sure hope it works. I think mint needs a lot of water.


I hate it when ping times are through the ceiling. Around 350ms at 10 a.m.


I tried printing the second side of my FAPA mailing. The Brother HL-3045CN printed the 36 copies of page 2. When I got to page 4, it told me I had no paper. WTF!? I tried reseating the paper tray several times. Getting madder and madder. The printer finally deigned to accept that it was full of paper, and printed my copies of page 4. Subsequently I was able to print through page 10.

The black toner cartridge is having problems again, as it has ever since being replaced. It puts a smear along one edge of each page. This may be partly because to get access to the printer, I have to have the printer slanting off the shelf it is on. Otherwise I can not read the error messages on the tiny almost totally unreadable display.

I am not impressed by printing.

Sunday 25 August 2013


I woke up around one, but got to sleep again. Did not get up until six, which for me counted as a good night. It was very cold last night, and this morning. Seems winter has returned, at least at night.

Weight is down to 68.5 kilograms.

We had fried egg on toast, with half a fried tomato. I restricted myself to one egg. Once again I forgot to put the butter away in the fridge. Ran four oranges through the juicer for our drink. They were very sweet.

I walked over to the restaurant with Jean just before midday. It got Jean out of the house for a walk. Joined several people at a table for lunch, which was country pie with gravy, with chips and salad. Followed by a commercial chocolate coated ice cream on a stick. This was organised by the restaurant in advance and in support of the country and western music show.

Carlyle Country Music Show

A presentation organised by Bob Hayne and Peter Atkinson of the Carlyle Gardens Carlton Theatre Group, with Geoff Dillon organising sound and lights. This featured Kelso Country Music Club, local independent country music artists, including veterans of the Charters Towers Country Music Festival.

I was wearing my music themed shirt, recently completed by Jean. Also The Arena, western style Akubra rabbit felt hat as promoted by Bob Katter. This was for the country and western show the relatively Carlton Theatre committee were putting on. Some folks were really getting into the spirit of it, with western style boots and jeans.

There were a heap of musicians attending and performing on stage. The new wiring Geoff had provided meant each stage position had its own microphone inputs. Plus there were foldback loud speakers for both front of stage and back of stage. I recall our own Peter performed very well with harmonica.

The bar folks had an outside fridge, so I had a wine or two at intervals. Entry to the show was $10, with door prizes, and they also sold fundraising tickets for a food hamper. There were prizes for best dressed Jackaroo and Jillaroo. I helped put the chairs away after the show ended, but there are always a lot of helpers, so it did not take long. I was also able to buy all three CDs by one of the performers.

Monday 26 August 2013


I was up just before six, after having been awake at one. I am sure that wine is a problem with sleeping. However not having wine does not always avoid the sleep problem.

Weight was 68.7 kilograms, not surprisingly up a little. However my weight is still way lower than several months ago, so this reduction is still working.

I ran another four oranges through the juicer this morning, while we were having our cereal and fruit for breakfast. Boring diet.

Jean and I took a two kilometre walk around Carlyle Gardens in the morning, as it was not hot at all. Rather breezy in fact.

Somewhat later we did a one kilometre walk, including checking the mail box. Only two pieces of political crap. We did collect shopping catalogues, so the walk was not a total loss.

I moved a bit more crap in the garage. Not going very quick. However I did get to the point of being able to move the two bays of Ikea (and fake Ikea) stands sufficiently towards the front of the garage. Plus I need to clean up dust and dirt before the next step. Wonder where the broom has gone?

So I went and sprayed poison on the weeds in the front garden. If you can not get something done, go kill something.


I completed a first draft of my ANZAPA mailing comments.

Collated my FLAP fanzine. Since it weighs less than 400 grams, I should be able to mail it as an envelope.

Net News Wire

I updated the Net News Wire RSS reader to version 4.0.0 (build 113). It crashed on install. Reopened it. Now it is chewing more than 50% of my CPU. I tried restarting it again. Now it is grabbing 125% of CPU. Over more than ten minutes, this dropped to 10% of CPU. Not real impressed.

Tuesday 27 August 2013


I was up just prior to six. Had cereal, banana, strawberries, kiwi fruit for breakfast, followed by fresh squeezed orange juice. I think I can find excuses for four walks to Carlyle Square today. Better than no walks.

Weight remains unchanged at 68.7 kilogram.

I walked over to the computer club room with Jean to check their Apple iPad learning session. Walked back just after eleven. Dave called me from the restaurant about them having rack of lamb.

I walked back over to the restaurant with Jean just before midday.

My extra WakaWaka solar power batteries had arrived from Europe while I was away.

MacTalk had a Pioneer loudspeaker on offer. So I tried to buy online. The Pioneer website was unable to cope with my address (they claimed they could do it automatically). So I cancelled the transaction. Then I went back to the MacTalk email, and unsubscribed from their mailing list. I suspect I will be unsubscribing from a shitload of mailing lists.

I walked back to the restaurant and bar a little after four for Allen and Dave's farewell.

Computer Club iOS Lessons

A decent roll up of people at the Computer Club iPad lesson. One considering getting an iPad. Two so new to iPad that they had only unboxed them that day. Several others who were having issues with concepts in using the iPad. Luckily Laurie and Clive are on the job as helpers.

Some people, maybe a lot, have no idea of the difference between an ISP and an email provider. Seems to me a lot of people do need help with some fundamentals. I thought the class probably helped folks a lot. The committee of the computer club do a great job.

Last Lunch

I attended the last lunch at the Carlyle Gardens restaurant around midday. There was a great roll up of people attending. Many tables full. If they had those numbers every day there would be no problems with keeping the place running, even running a profit on meals.

Sat at my usual table with Dot, Sue, Jeff, Ray and John. Dave had caught me earlier as I was passing, and mentioned there were only four rack of lamb available. So I ordered a rack of lamb. I am going to miss rack of lamb.

Sue drove me back. She had several times mentioned she liked the garden ornaments we had from West Australia. Jean had been contemplating getting rid of the ornaments. So Sue took them with her. That worked well for all. I suspect Sue will do a great job of looking after them, and placing them in her more extensive garden.


A walk to the bar with Jean for Allen and Dave's farewell, around 4:30 p.m. We stayed for well over an hour, chatting with many people. There sure seemed a heap of free wine and beer consumed. Allen even brought out sandwiches and party pies and chips.

I was unexpectedly asked by Gordon to make a speech thanking Allen and Dave for their service to the community. I hope I did not mess it up too much. Gordon presented them with a giant card we had all signed.

It was really a wake. I am sure all who attended are very sorry to see them leave. Especially when none of us have any idea of the future of the bar and restaurant.

CGCC Annual General Meeting

I attended the annual general meeting of the Carlyle Gardens Computer Club, commencing at seven at the conference room. I noticed that the farewell in the bar had reached the karaoke stage.

Not as many people at the meeting as I expected, The formalities were soon over, with just a single addition to the committee in the form of Ray Morgan joining.

Peter gave a short presentation of the legality of downloading from the internet. It seemed for the questions that people were understanding the topic. That was pretty good.

The usual delicious supper followed. I had two points of egg sandwich, three half fruit scones with jam and cream. My diet is totally shot. Plus I was given two little chocolate cupcakes on my way out. I resisted eating them that instant, or while I walked home.

Wednesday 28 August 2013


I was awake at five, but did not get up until a little later. It seems cool and dark out there so early.

My weight has understandably gone up to 69.1 kilograms. More days of starving ahead to get it back down below.

Started laundry around 6:30 a.m. A small amount of cereal, with honey and strawberries. I squeezed three oranges on the juicer, which leaves us four for tomorrow. We eventually got the laundry hung up around eight.

Then we went shopping.


A trip to Domain Central. Jean was seeking some clothes. First stop Bunnings hardware. Jean wanted more plastic boxes of drawers. She found them too, which rather surprised us both. Later she found a Dirt Devil stick vacuum cleaner, as a replacement for the one we have which is starting to fail.

I once again failed to find any of the Mort Bay colour change RGB LED light bulbs with remote control. However I did find two Arlec Lunar table lamps at under $15, which have an E27 Edison screw fitting. These have a hemispherical frosted glass surround. I think they will work well with the colour change bulbs.

We left Bunnings rather pleased with our shopping expedition. Just as well. Jean found nothing in Kathmandu hiking. I found nothing in Bed Shed. We continued on to Anaconda hiking. Nothing there despite a long search. I thought we would also fail in Spotlight. However Jean found some purple cloth with a spider web pattern. I think that will look good in whatever she makes for herself.

It was ten by then. So we went around the block to Dan Murphy liquor for a resupply. The Pepperjack Shiraz was too expensive to consider, at over $20. We found some of the West Australian classic white that Jean likes. Plus vodka, rum and pisco. That should be a full restock.

We bought fuel on our way home. The yellow low warning light was on. This came to over 47 litres, however we used the 30 cent off coupon we had.

Philips Hue Bulbs

I had new lamps after our shopping trip, so I decided to install the Philips Hue bulbs. Alas, when I (finally) opened the packages (bought in May when I got my Philips Hue Starter Kit), I found two out of three of the Hue bulbs had broken glass. One was completely shattered. One was cracked in several places, but was still holding together. Since I had never opened the packages, this must have happened during transit. Wish I had checked them earlier.

The cover glass is an integral part of the light diffusing system on the Philips Hue bulbs, so the lamps do not direct their light evenly without the special glass cover. The light is far less effective once the glass has broken away. The electronics however are still fine.

Thursday 29 August 2013


I was up at about 5:30 a.m. after a good night sleep.

Weight was 68.9 kilograms, so it is trending down again.

We had scrambled eggs for breakfast, and shared the last crust of bread with Dick Smith Apricot jam on it. I juiced the last four oranges early, so we could put the last of the garbage out with the early morning rubbish collection.

Off to Willows. Jean found far more stuff than I expected in the vegetables at Coles. Not sure what the expensive bits were.

Walked to the Reading Cinema. Back well after one. Helped with a printer problem. Back after three, by which time Jean was also home again.

Movie RED2

I walked to the Reading Cinema a little after ten. About three kilometres. However Runkeeper went crazy and insisted it was 10 kilometres. Got there in plenty of time, since they show previews at the actual start time.

RED 2 is an action adventure spy movie, with a whole bunch of older actors. Maybe seniors are now the cinema audience? It was a lot of fun. Plus lots of explosions. What is not to like?

Apple Help

I ran into Frank as I was returning from the cinema. He asked if I could help him fine tune his new Apple TV on Saturday. I thought he wanted help today.

Instead of having the afternoon free, Alan phoned me, as I had suggested. Wanted help getting his Apple iPad to print to his Hewlett Packard printer. He had downloaded the HP ePrint app. So I walked over.

Took a fair while to gather sufficient information to actually get that printer working. Instead of having an ADSL modem and a router and a wireless access point (and thus having a standard WiFi network), their connection was via a Telstra cellular gadget. No access to the IP numbers assigned or anything like that. No real details of what Telstra were supplying as a WiFi network. Luckily I was able to use his (mostly unused) Windows laptop to persuade the network to give up the information I needed to set up printing.

Not at all impressed it is that hard to get printing working. It makes things really difficult for people who are not into computers. No wonder Apple did not want to attempt to support average printers.

If you want to print from an iPad, first of all you will need a working WiFi network, and get your compatible printer connected to your Wireless Access Point. Next, please only buy one of the 500 or so printers from at least 15 manufacturers on Apple's list of Apple AirPrint compatible printers. It will make life easier. Much easier. It is not the only way, but it is the easier way. More simple information explaining setting up your WiFi network from Apple. Yes, trust me, that really is the simple explanation.

Hue Menu

I found Hue menu, version 1, released 28 August. This is a menu bar application for a Macintosh, to control Philips Hue lights. You can buy it for $3 in the Mac App Store. Alas, at the moment it has a few real bad reviews relating to whether it works at all. As far as I know, there is no other similar product.

Friday 30 August 2013


I was up at six, but that was because I heard an alarm go off. Certainly did not really feel like it.

Weight is down to 68.3 kilograms.

We each had a boiled egg on buttered toast for breakfast. No oranges left, so I had orange juice. I doubt that will hold me for long.

I worked on the garage cleanup from eight to ten.

The chemist phoned, about Jean's transaction (they goofed). I messaged Jean.

A Home Ice Cream van just came by. I rushed out, but they do not sell a single serve ice cream. Isn't it a little silly to not sell what customers want?

I worked on cleaning the garage for most of the day.

Baked beans on bread for lunch. Cheese and tomato on bread for dinner. Still hungry at 9 p.m. so I had some milk.

My Galileo pan and tilt stand arrived mid afternoon. It has been over a year for that Kickstarter gadget to arrive.

Garage Cleanout

I worked fairly steadily cleaning out the garage from just after eight until ten. Not hard, but I did need to wash shelves when they were cleared, and then leave them to dry.

The big wooden imitation Ikea workbench stands I used to have in the closet are a problem. The best of these needs to replace the one that did not reassemble well. However until I get other stuff out of the way, I can not start on that.

Jean's corner desk is a real puzzle, so I gave up for a break at ten. I can see where some parts of it assemble, but other panels are a total mystery. I did find some screws belonging to it, and many screws are already loosely seated in the holes they go into during assembly. I got several parts assembled in the wrong order, and had to redo them. That was only after I found the missing panel. However it was eventually assembled, after Jean returned and helped hold bits from falling on me.

During the afternoon I managed to move the big stand. Sure had a lot of stuff stashed outside the garage by them. We managed to identify a fair bit of material that we should discard. I crammed everything back into the garage by mid to late afternoon, much of it in better order. Jean even managed to give a small electric remote control helicopter to our neighbour. Lots more to do tomorrow.

Not Attending

I usually go to lunch on Friday at the restaurant at Carlyle Gardens. Now the restaurant is closed at end of lease, I would need to make a booking for a meal in the Carlton Theatre. While I think it great that the RSL pushed for meals, and that Management were able to get meals provided by Penny, I just do not take to the idea of booking a meal in advance at a restaurant. So I suspect I have had my last meal here at Carlyle Gardens. A pity, as it means there are some nice people I met when I started having meals here who I may not see again.

The Friday evening Social Club gathering is also now in the Carlton Theatre rather than in the restaurant and bar. Bring your own drinks and snacks. I do not mind walking to our neighbour carrying a beer. But I am not going to take a picnic to a regular social event. Not going to happen, so I probably will not attend another Social Club event, unless I happen to be passing by at the right time. I think the new restriction on the bar and restaurant use makes for a very hard life for the new Social Club.

If I am not attending resort style events, just how much use is a retirement resort like Carlyle Gardens? I think the system is broken.

Saturday 31 August 2013


I was up at 4:30 a.m. This will not end well.

My weight is up to 68.6 kilograms.

We did laundry. Had scrambled eggs on toast for breakfast. Got the laundry out.

I had to reset my Apple iPhone. Both Runkeeper and Moves were having issues, and a reset seemed the simplest way to solve it. I am guessing memory leaks.

walked around Willows about three times. However the only things we bought were Misty Mountains milk (which is not homogenised) from Coles and a 12 cereal loaf of bread from Brumby's bread shop.

Garage Cleanout

I was in the garage continuing the cleanout when Laurie drove up on his electric cart. I had emailed him last night about surplus items. He took away the 19 inch ViewSonic monitor, for the Computer Club room. Not interested in the other items. He did tell us Endeavour collected electronic scrap for recycling the metals.

Laurie returned later, and suggested Jo-ann was attempting to clear out the old records. It seemed she may have use for the D ring binders and for the comb binding machine and covers and combs.

When I had done sufficient cleaning, I shot an email off to Jo-ann. Then visited the office. We arranged to drop the stuff off on Tuesday. That was good.

I did a little more cleaning in the garage after I returned. I once again seem to be running into diminishing returns on the clearing.

Had a very late lunch or early dinner. A half apple and a slice of cheese, a few strawberries and half a banana, baked beans on a slice of bread.

Fix Apple TV

I visited Frank at eleven. He was having a little struggle with the Apple TV he had bought. His TV setup was very nice, with a good quality Yamaha SoundBar as speakers. I used to have a much earlier model. So that convinced me that a full on use of the Apple TV was very appropriate.

I showed Frank how his Apple iMac could transfer music and video to the Apple TV. There was only one setting being a stumbling block, but I went through some of the more useful settings.

Since I then had everything working, both the Apple iPad could make full use of the Apple TV and the big screen without further changes. His concern was the ABC iView application. Once I showed him how to start up iPad screen mirroring, he got the idea right away.

Afterwards I partook of a nice glass of his red wine as we chatted about less technical issues for a while. It is a delight to assist Frank. He always makes a really solid attempt to get things working himself.

Solar Power

My solar inverter output figures are 4723kWh in 13791 hours. The previous figures in July were E-total 4591kWh, h-total 13433 hours. This makes 132kWh power generated in 358 hours. 4.2kW per day or 368 Watts per active hour, in August. Panels are 1000 Watts nominal.

The Ergon electricity meter for July 2013 are 5018kWh purchased on Tariff 11, Tariff 33 is at 4132kWh, and solar power export is 2075kWh. August figures are 5125kWh, 4142kWh on Tariff 33, and 2151kWh for exports. Use for the month of August is 107kWh, air conditioning use is 10kWh. Solar export is 76kWh, much better than July.

Home and Away

AB 15, CG 16, T 0

Eric Lindsay's Blog August 2013