Day 180: Friday Smoking Ruins

First, it is day 180 by my count of the lockdown. Dr. Fauci is saying we have to hunker-down as this disaster will continue into 2021. When I now understand that this will go on for longer than I imagined, my head does not quite explode, but there was leakage! Ugh!

I was talking on the phone with my friend Mariah who writes and publishes. We talked about the possibilities the current trials have in a short story. I have already written a story about my hero of horror stories, Howard, already locked-down in Portland. I had added some rioting to my version of Dream Portland that is ruled over by the horror known as the Yellow King. I had not thought of fires and smoke chocking Howard in Portland, and thusly my horror-filled virtual evil Portland is not as bad as the current conditions!

While talking about writing, Mariah liked my idea of time travelers trying to survive in 2020 Portland as a bet. You could imagine a contest where the time travelers are sent into Portland 2020 in February and, without using any futuristic technology, must succeed at tasks or be disqualified (at best). The contestants would have to try to acquire toilet paper. Somehow earn local currency by some hourly job or hack the IRS to get the $1200 or even somehow get unemployment, then avoid being infected, manage to eat and live, and survive the fires and smoke this week. A sort of Marathon or Ironman triathlon for time travelers 2020. I am tempted to write that. Maybe I could go with a Doctor Who Fan Story with the previous Doctor and Missy as the contestants.

Yes, I feel like Poe and Dickens would love to tell a story about these times in Portland. If H.P. Lovecraft was here, he would be on the wrong side of everything. In my story about the lockdown, Alister Crowley moves to Portland, has a food truck, and embraces the disasters. It does feel like we summoned him or other crazies.

I started work at 7ish and saw the air quality numbers and just put in for time off. I am not going to talk and try to think about software design with smoke everywhere. Interestingly, my boss suggested that he too should throw in the towel and drive somewhere safer. He sent an email later that he was in very bad air as he crossed into the high desert in Oregon. He should be safe now and in clear air.

I decided this late morning to make quiche for breakfast-lunch. I made coffee and started cooking the bacon. I cooled the bacon and broke it up and then mixed in the eggs, shallots cooked in bacon grease, cheese, slices of tomato, cream, and a pastry shell (frozen). I baked it, and Susie started about noon and was excited that I made quiche, her favorite, cheese with bacon.

I also cleaned off my work table and put away the paints. I am not going outside to spray paint primer during the air quality emergency! I have an unbuilt 3D filament printer, Folger 2020 i3. So I retrieved it from the box from the garage and brought it in. I went through the instructions to build it and printed a set, and got ready to make it for the weekend. I need calipers; mine are missing. I spent some time looking for them, but it was unwise to spend much time in the garage.

I then had a choice to order cheap ones or professional ones. I think I remember the cheaper ones breaking–that is likely why I don’t have them. I finally ordered good ones from I actually ordered AdaFruit’s best set, but in the strange world we are in, AdaFruit asks you to order from someone else as they are helping to fight Corvid-19 in their hometown of New York, New York. Yes, twisting-logic to now order from to get AdaFruit’s professional calipers. And they charged me an additional $12 to cover the Trump-China Tarif. Yes, I feel like I am in SciFi or Horror story.

I will start back on the 3D printer later this month.

I bought the printer kit a few years ago. The parts are also the same parts I would use for a robot. The printer was much cheaper than buying the pieces–I could use it for a robot or as a printer. I have not been back to robots in the last few years, so it has just sat in its box. Board games, figure painting, and Python with Machine Learning have been my focus these last two years (plus lots of travel in 2019). I also picked up a resin 3D printer in 2019 that is excellent and easy to use. So I just have not been back to this printer in a few years.

I have seen a few larger items that my resin printer cannot handle. The price difference for a larger area resin printer and the toxicity of larger resin prints give me pause to proceed in that direction. I would like to try a filament printer for these larger items and so back to the one I own, still in its bags waiting to be assembled.

Turning to dinner, I made goulash of a sort today. I reduced the number of onions and added in carrots, celery, and potatoes; a stewish goulash. I had to freeze a bit of the pork rib meat, I use pork boneless rib meat, and not all of it would fit in the pot! It takes about two hours to cook down. We had it a bit late tonight, which was fine as the quiche this morning was served as a late lunch.

Changing to sad subjects, to celebrate the life of Dame Diane Riggs, I have ordered, and I am watching her first season on “The Avengers” TV show. I also gifted Lord Rev. Wolff a copy (I also gave Steve a Lordship from Sealand recently. Lord Wolff is also a Time Lord). Mrs. Peel, Diane Rigg’s character, is one of the arch types in my thinking in role-playing adventure design and writing. What would Mrs. Peel do in this situation? I will always think of Dame Riggs drinking champagne as Mrs. Peel getting a note saying, “We are needed.”

At this moment, more than 10% of the Oregonians are evacuated as a results of forest fires. Air quality is predicted to be dangerous from smoke and low winds in the valley for the next two days. We are staying inside. A few towns are now gone, Oregon will lose more. It is terrible. 

Today more than one thousand people in the USA died from the virus, according to reports on the Internet.

As it is September Eleventh, the nineteenth one since we started counting them, I thought a requiem, Mozart Requiem – Lacrimosa, was the right choice. And because it is a day to remember who we are here in the USA, I found this arrangement of the USA National Anthem that is a little different but well done.



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