…in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.
The Master’s Miata Club was “hosting” a cruise in at the Sno Cap Drive-In in North Augusta tonight. We had about 8 of our cars and a smattering of other cars in attendance. About halfway through the evening, in pulled a blue Miata that wasn’t a club member. Hey, wait a minute, that car looks familiar. Sure enough, it was Donna and my old car. I went over and said hello to the new owner Shannon Vick and her son. She and he were in North Augusta and he suggested going to the Sno Cap for something to eat. They had no clue that we would be there. Boy that sure is a pretty car.
You must remember this;
A car is still a car,
A sigh is just a sigh ?
The fundamental things apply
As time goes by
I complained the other day about how I knew that the commercials on during the Tour de France would be the same and get tiresome easy. Well today was day 2 and it has happened already. Not only is the coverage focusing on Lance, but also he is in all the commercials. Several of the ads are hocking contests involving Lance — got to our web site and enter to win a ride with Lance, win Lance’s bike, win a trip to the Tour to see Lance ride, win Lance’s sweaty used lycra shorts.…
I can’t see how the latest join the Army commercial, that is running during the Tour de France coverage, can make anyone want to join up.
Your mission is to track enemy movement from deep cover. You have supplies for 5 days. It is day 12, do you have what it takes?
What it takes to go willingly on mis-planned and ill-equipped missions? Am I that gullible?
Not only is he all over every cycling publication, but now he is hitting the mainstream mags. Yesterday when we left the gym I spied an Esquire magazine on a table in the waiting area and can you guess who was on the cover? My Men’s Journal came in the mail today, guess who is on the cover? To add icing to the cake he even has a cool rockstar girlfriend. Oh yeah, OLN is back up on cable tonight, so I watched a couple of interviews with him and a few minutes of him riding today, some footage of him leading the team yesterday and a couple more interviews of people who knew him or coached him or cleaned his pool. Plus, there are all those contests running.…enough already! He is going to suffer from the Hootie Syndrome* soon.
*Hootie Syndrome: Become so poular that it is hip to hate you. Named after Hootie & The Blowfish that early 90’s music sensation that had like 5 of their songs in the top 10 at one time.
I’ve had quite enough of Bob Roll. The guy is annoying for TV. I’ve read some of his stuff and enjoyed it (although now that I’ve seen and heard him, I may have trouble with this in the future.) The guy between his front teeth is a distraction and all those exaggerated hand gestures are a distraction too. It is pronounced Tour Duh France not Tour Dee France, that may be OK at home, but when you are doing a nationwide television show at least try and pronounce it right.
Putting a microphone on Jason Giambi at the All-Star Game. Don’t we get enough grunting from our sports figures with women’s tennis?
Making fun of Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez’s affection for Yanni music. Can’t we just focus on the fact that a grown man doesn’t mind being called Pudge?
What happened to the Clemens/Piazza feud? Or did Mike get his revenge by telling the American League hitters just where Roger was going to throw?
My clothes dryer. The last one we had had a very hard to clean lint filter. So when we bought this new one several months ago I made sure that we got a flatter one that would be easier to clean. Well the joke is on me, no one is east to clean, but the design has gaps at the end of the fins that help tumble the clothes. These gaps are just big enough to get a sock or pair of skivvies wedged in them, so that they don’t dry. This is usually discovered when removing the 98% of the load that is dry and there is absolutely no way to dry one sock.
Been thinking about getting a front spoiler to make the front a little more aggressive looking and a touch lower to the ground. I don’t care for either Mazda offering as they look way too tacked on for my tastes. Really looking for one that looks like the one Mazda used on the 99–00 models. I always keep an eye on the interior/exterior section of the miataforum for leads. about a week ago some posted about a spoiler he saw on a Swiss web site and wondered if any one could get it for him. When I went to the link, there it was, what I have been looking for, the ATH Hinsberger Comet.
I wrote to the contact email and asked if they shipped to the US. The answer came back no, but I should try the spoiler company’s US distributor. I emailed them and heard nothing back for 3 days. An inauspicious start to our business relationship. I did a little searching on the company and found a forum that they sponsor, it is for Tiburons, but from what I read not too many people are pleased with them. More research was required. Went to the spoiler manufacturer’s web site and found they have a distributor in Canada and Scotland that I thought I’d give a try. The Canadian’s replied to my email in a matter of minutes (more like it.) They do ship to the US, but the price was about $50 higher than the relaxed and dodgey Californian. They also mentioned that this was a new product that they don’t stock so the lead-time could be as much as 2 months. None of this was mentioned by the CA company. I wrote back to both with some more questions and I’m waiting…
The Scottish fellow replied to my original request and he said, “ATH Hinsberger has a distributor in USA and asks that we respect the distributor territories.” Which may be correct, but seeing as Mr. Canada said OK, I figure this was a polite brush off and that he didn’t want the hassle of overseas shipping (and something that can be a pain in the a$$.)
The Canadian has already replied to my further questions, so you can guess where I will be spending my money. If I pull the trigger. With painting this little mod will be in the middle 400 dollar range. This is not chump change for me and sounds like a major investment for something that will occasionally be scraped on parking lot dividers. The Mazda unit I put on the old blue car was like a hundred and a quarter. Stay tuned.
This memo was forwarded to few folks at our plant today. It concerns a staffing change at our main plant in Florham Park. Why I got it I’m not sure, but I’m glad I did because I found it entertaining. The Name has been changed to protect the “innocent.“
I am pleased to announce that Fred Flintstone has accepted the position of Procurement Commodity Manager beginning 7/19/04. Over the last 6 years, Fred has held various roles in Engineering with increasing responsibility. Most recently, Fred held the position of Project Manager with direct responsibility over the RHNG project. Fred has played an integral role in managing this project through a successful design freeze. Due to the critical nature of this project, Fred will continue as Project Manager until the electronic version is successfully in production.
Fred has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Really Smart Guy Institute, an M.S. in Engineering Management from Cheesy Online University, and an MBA in Strategic Management from Snotty Nose University.
In Fred’s new role, he will manage several key commodities including machined parts. Fred will be responsible for developing and implementing the strategic direction of these commodities in an effort to drive negative net inflation, globalization, and supplier performance. Fred will be reporting to me.
Please join me in congratulating Fred on his new assignment.
RHNG stands for Red Hat Next Generation which going to be our latest and greatest valve if it ever comes to fruition. It has been stuck on one thing or another for couple three years now. So is this a promotion or a demotion? Before, top dog engineer on the company’s valve of the future, now, buyer of bitsy valve parts, you tell me. Just what is a successful design freeze anyway? He got the design so screwed up we are frozen with no chance to go back or forward in any attempt to make this a viable product? Whatever, here is my hearty congratulations to you Fred, salute!
While searching in her purse for something, Donna found a Free Appetizer card we received from a manager at a restaurant from way back in June. We didn’t run right out and get our free food because the chain restaurant doesn’t have a local location. We were coming back from Connecticut back in early June and as we were zipping south on I-81, just into northern Virginia, it was time for some lunch. As we looked at all the signs along the side of the road for the eateries that we could agree on, I spotted a place that we had never really heard of, but I had seen a positive review of on the net by a world renown restaurant critic, so we decided to give it a whirl. We weren’t real hungry so we agreed to order just an appetizer and a burger to split. As we looked over the menu to finalize our choice we could hear the folks at the table behind us say, “You are just getting this to us now?” Apparently they had just gotten their appetizer when they were halfway thru their entree. Undaunted, we ordered something (I can’t remember what it was two months ago almost) and emphasized to the waiter to be sure and get the appetizers order in first so we got it first. He said he would. We never saw him again.
A waitress smilingly and unsuspecting dropped off our hamburger. We immediately asked her where our appetizer was. She, not being our primary server and just helping out, had no idea but went off to check. We cut the sandwich in two and it was very tasty. The fries were good, but would have been a lot better if they were actually hot. The next staff person that came by we flagged over and complained about the fries. She promised to get us some more that were hot. Donna and I started our own little pool to bet on which would show up first, fries or appetizer. The fries came first, delivered by the manager. He apologized and asked how he could make it up to us, could he get us our appetizer. We told him we didn’t want it at this point. We told him that he could give us our meal for free, but he couldn’t do that. To make him feel better we accepted his little card for a free appetizer. We told him it was probably worthless as that particular chain didn’t exist where we lived, so he wrote inside good at any location and N/A in the expiration date spot.
For all we know the restaurant had just opened yesterday, it was in a very new shopping center. They were probably like a lot of things these days, just getting the product to market without working all the bugs out of the system. Beta testing on the public as it were. We will probably try another Red Robin Gourmet Burgers at another time if it happens to fall into place that there is one where and when we happen to be hungry.
This is our Long Days, Short Week at work. We work 9 hour days Mon-Thurs and get Friday afternoon off. Here it is nearly 10 PM amd the day is over already. How can working just a half hour extra in the morning and another half hour in the afternoon kill the day so quickly? It couldn’t have been the 2 hours this evening I surfed the web for porn while my wife and her mother went to an exercise class? Nah.
Continue reading LDSW
I received an email from Scotland today. When he told me he would honor ATH distributor’s regions and not sell to the US, I wrote back thanking him for the response. I then went into my rant about ATH“s US distributor (who has still not responded to my 2nd round of questions I sent last Thursday) and told him I wouldn’t deal with them. So today Scotland emails and asks for front end dimensions of the car so he can add shipping to his quote. I guess he changed his mind and is trying to save ATH a sale. I’ll forward the dims to him, but unless he is insanely cheaper, I think I’m still going Canada.
Oh, boy! Porsche is introducing a new 911. Looks about the same with some improvements to the engine, chassis, etc. Goes like stink and starts at $80K. Blogging may be light for awhile around here while I’m in line to get one.
Scotland chimed in with his pricing. About the same for the spoiler, but as expected shipping kicked him right out of the running. He wanted ?70 to ship, not the approximate $70 for our Canadian friend, with an exchange rate of 1.8$ to a ? that is a major bump. I had just one more question for Canada, how much was import duty going to be on this piece of plastic? Didn’t need a $100 surprise on top of what is already approaching a $400 spoiler. The answer is 2.5% or about $7.50. That is a figure I can live with. But can I live with that big a price? After painting we are sure to be close to $450. That is about what it would cost to get a nice set of lighter 15″ wheels.
I did a couple of quick photoshopping exercises on the images from the original Swiss website:
Doesn’t look too bad unpainted, but that is if you only look at it in this view. Taking in the whole car, that bit of black hanging off the front, I’m not to sure. On the first gen cars there was already a small section along the bottom middle of the car in black, so adding a black spoiler up front and back completed a line. No such black on the newer cars. An alternative, would be of course to get some side sills in black and to complete the look something in black on the back. Nobody makes a decent back ground-effect piece for the M2, except of course this same ATH. They make a killer back piece, unfortunately it has a couple of center cutouts that fits their dual exhaust muffler and no one else’s. By the time I’m done, I’ve have spent $2k (which is impossible unless I hit the lotto.)
To quote a friend, “I’m on the horns of the Dalai Lama.” Should I spend more than I think is same just to get the front to look like I like? Or should I go back to working on getting my wife to agree to some lowering springs?
I can’t pull the trigger. I want, but I’m not sure I want it that bad. If Rspeed sold them, I’d probably have bought it by now. Not only is it a money thing, it is the I don’t know these people thing too. While they have been Johnny on the spot answering emails, New State Corporation has exhibited a couple of the same things that put me off of our California candidate, TeamSR, i.e. an inactive forum, a new name and a new warehouse.
I need a sign. If something doesn’t make me want it by next Monday, I guess I’ll buy something else. The pump is primed and there is no going back. It’ll probably be something smaller, like a new antenna. I’ve also thought about getting that Mazda cargo net for the trunk…
Today is not my birthday, it is actually in September, but I bought my gift today. Well, actually we bought Donna’s gift to me. That’s not entirely true either, we ordered the gift today. It doesn’t even come out until a week before my birthday.
Bought Pre-ordered it from Amazon and it was available for free super-saver shipping, so because I saved 2.98 on shipping, I spent 3.49 on gift wrapping. Happy Birthday To Me
And it ain’t a front lip spoiler.It is a cockpit cover. I don’t have this particular one, but when I have to replace the current one, this will be it. This is a little fuller to cover cars with rollbars, but the added height will be better for getting over the new taller “surfboard” seats. The current one fits kind of tight and around the doors it doesn’t overlap too much. If there is a big crosswind some rain might get in there. We went out to eat at Chilis this afternoon and while there was a 30% chance of showers the skies didn’t look threatening. But it is summertime in the south and pop up thundershowers can happen at anytime, so the cockpit cover went on. Good thing too. About the time we were finishing up it started to rain. Once it starts you are better off waiting until it stops before trying to get the cover off and the roof up while the drops fall. We ducked under a shopping center overhang and decided to go shopping some in Target. While inside there, it really started to come down. It was really pouring because the sound was extremely loud. It stopped and started several times with the same intensity. Donna and I just looked at each other hoping that the cover would hold. When it finally stopped, we headed back out to the parking lot. Sure enough the inside of the car was dry. Only the tops of the seats were damp where they were in contact with the cover. This is at least the tenth time I’ve been saved from having to turn on the bilge pumps after a rainstorm by the cover. As a bonus it helps keep the interior from getting cooked in the hot afternoon sunshine.
Watching ESPN’s intro to last night’s Red Sox/Yankees game there was a bit on the rivalry between the two clubs. Interesting piece (well, if you are a fan of either club maybe), but the best part was one Red Sox fan’s comment, “It’s a love/hate relationship. I love the Red Sox and they apparently hate me.” Amen brother.
Count that day lost whose low descending sunViews from thy hand no worthy action done.
— Author unknown
Dreams grow holy put in action; work grows fair through starry dreaming,But where each flows on unmingling, both are fruitless and in vain.
- Adelaide Anne Procter
I did it. Today I gave some stranger in a whole other country on the other end of a phone line my credit card number and ordered the lip spoiler. I have been looking for something to keep track of or count in my daily entries, well this is it. Because this item is coming, probably by boat from Europe, through Canada, probably by train, and then probably by truck to me, the ETA is 2 months. From now until the day the Comet’s orbit reaches an intersection with mine, at the bottom of each entry will be an ever increasing number. Watch with me now:
Comet Gestation Counter: 0 days
The wait began in earnest today. I would like to say that I could put the spoiler out of my mind and then like magic, one day, it would appear. But that probably won’t happen, mainly because I will be adding one each day to the counter at the footer of each post.
I just raised the wrath of the CFO by spending big bucks on a plastic bit for the car in the middle of her major debt reduction program. I want to finish off the package with a set of the small Mazda side sills, but was waiting until next year when the things had cooled off before brining up spending $350 on this item. Of course, now, wouldn’t you know it, I have a line on some used ones for $150. This is a tempting offer, but I’m not going to try it just yet. I may be stupid, but I’m not crazy.
Comet Gestation Counter: 1 day
Peer pressure or maybe just the power of suggestion caused me to blink this afternoon.
Two days ago my boss’s boss and fellow Miata owner had to go home and remove his seats so the wet vac could get all the water out from underneath them. He had his cockpit cover on, but the intensity and duration breeched that shield. We speculate that the reason mine survived the downpour on Saturday and his didn’t the other day was because my higher 2001+ seatbacks form a better tent. So, Russ is now just a little gun shy when the afternoon skies start to darken.
Today he came and told me that he put his top up and maybe I should consider it too. This is standard procedure between us, when one puts their top the other get a courtesy notification. It would be kind of nasty to put your top up and not say something, only to have it rain. After a quick peek at the Weather Channel radar online confirmed thundershowers in the area, I told him I’d walk out and see what the skies looked like. He volunteered to join me. Sure enough, the skies did appear nasty off in the direction that the rain usually comes from, but my gut instinct told me that it wasn’t going to make it to us before I went in 90 minutes. I did say I’d check again in about a half an hour just to be sure.
About 45 minutes later I went through the same steps, radar and then a walk into the parking lot. I reached the same conclusion, it wouldn’t rain before I went home, so I headed back into the building. But the dark skies were a little closer and more prevalent. The wind was a little brisker. It felt cool. Then there were those thought seeds planted earlier, I turned around and went back out to raise the top.
Of course, it didn’t rain.
Comet Gestation Counter: 2 days
A friend at work just bought a new Saturn Ion Quad Coupe. One with those oh so trendy small back doors that swing out backward, ala suicide doors of old. To him, the lesser of all the evils in the color choices, was white. Looking at the Saturn web site, I think I would have gone with the blue, but that is me. To me all white cars look kind of like refrigerators with wheels from some angles.
James says the only thing he really doesn’t like about the car is the wheels. And come tax refund time next year he will probably get some after market wheels. I recommended he check out TireRack.com and play around. On the site you can get a crude idea of what a set of wheels will look like on your car.
Here are the OEM wheels. They don’t look to bad here and I think they go with the car. They look good close up, but in the real 3-D world they do leave a lot to be desired.
He mentioned he would get something a little less busy, something maybe with five spokes, something like my OEM Miata wheels.…
I think my wheels look good and they are easy to keep clean, but I’ve said it here before, I’d like a 15″ wheel for the lightness factor and to differentiate my car from the thousands of other stock Miatas out there.
The bolt pattern is the same on both wheels, maybe we should swap. In this rendering, just as the one above with the wheels on the Saturn, they look OK, but I’m sure they would still be ugly in real life. Swapping is one of those random weird thoughts that go through your head, but are quickly dismissed if you are a sane person. As I said Wednesday, I may be stupid, but I’m not crazy.
Comet Gestation Counter: 3 days
While poking around the ol’ hard drive on Thursday I found another chapter of the Life of Brian that I had coded for the Master’s Miata Club’s web site several years ago. All the other LOBs were in word format, but for what ever reason, this one wasn’t, so I missed it the first time through. Chapter 5 happened in late 2000 and concerns the jinxed purchase of a set of tires and wheels from the TireRack.
This purchase was jinxed for the entire life of the tires too. For whatever reason this combination of the wheels and tires had a tendency to spontaneously got flat. Happened 3 times in the two year life span of the tires. Best we (the collective knowledge of the Miata.net Tires forum and I) could come up with was that once the tire pressure dropped below a certain level the bead of the tire could separate from the wheel. The set of Bridgestone SO-3s that came after, never failed in their 2 years before I wore them out.
Comet Gestation Counter: 4 days