Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Jeopardy is on at 7:21pm

Watching Jeopardy with my folks.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Giant Nutra is outta here.

7:21pm. I'm boxing up a Giant Nutra frame that I'm selling on eBay. I'm wishing it was a Giant Nutria instead, for the purpose of adding excitement.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Hot coffee and hilarious flotsam.

I'm back out in Kennett after a lovely slow-paced morning. I did my favorite thing. I woke up in my awesome room in my awesome apartment with Kristin. I laid around with the sun coming through the window. I have warmth in abundance with a strong heater and a 'utilities paid' rental agreement.

We got going, and got coffee. She took her bicycle, and I manned the adult tricycle with bright crocheted handlebar coverings. After coffee comes knick-knack acquisition. We root around looking for $.90 Garfield mugs and other humorous jetsam. Today I struck gold.

I found a Saris Bones 3 bicycle rack for $12.97. I'll put that up on eBay later and sell it for $80+ dollars. I know because I have an auction for another one going right now.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Detailed post.

This helps... in my notebook: "Chinese food."

Saturday, February 25, 2012

MacBook Pro, bro.

I got a sweet MacBook Pro with some of my eBay earnings. I'm also squared up with some money I owed the bicycle shop. The laptop is a few years old, and thus was a reasonably priced acquisition. ($533).

Don't worry about The Van-Land Savings Plan: I'm still fully on track with that, and I can pay rent, too.

I'll take this opportunity to underscore how this seems to be a happy time in my life, and I am excited about all the new developments and possibilities.

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Van-Land Savings Plan.

Next month is one of the secret months with an extra paycheck. March has five Fridays, and three of them happen to be a payday. If I do things right, I'll be able to stash an entire paycheck in savings.

The Van-Land Savings Plan. It has begun. I've started skimming money out of my checking account and putting it into savings. I've had the same tired $5 in my savings account for over two years. Now I have a few hundred. If I can keep the ball rolling, there will soon be more.

My current plan is to put at least $300 per month away for a new van, or a plot of land: whichever I decide on when I actually have enough to do something. I don't know whether I'd rather have a super nice van to live in, or a piece of land to construct a couple beat up van-cabin living structures. But - as I've reasoned - it doesn't matter. Both take money, so both options are out of reach right now. In the meantime while I'm thinking about it, I can do more research and start stashing money away.

The land option is appealing because land doesn't break down, suck gas, or get parking tickets. My plan would be to create a small off-grid homestead with vans as the structures rather than a cabin.

Quick list of thoughts:
  - No building permits. It's a van, not some looming onerous structure.
  - Van cabins can be decorated or scrapped at will. Versatile.
  - Non-moving vans can have both front seats removed for more space.
  - Composting toilet; propane heat; solar panels with battery bank.
  - Creating a level foundation is inexpensive and rudimentary.
  - Doors, windows, walls are already in place.
  - No bullshit homeowner headaches; no bullshit landlord headaches.
  - It's like living in a conceptual art project of your own making.
  - Definitely write some kind of book about it.

The details of this project are in much sharper focus inside my head. I have most of the answers to most of the obvious questions, because I've sorta been researching this for the past decade. I'm excited - to say the very least - to be currently throwing momentum behind this pipe dream that I've been harboring for ages.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Pizza party and a trike ride home.

I went to a pizza party at Shelly and Arden's. Make your own pie. Boom. Mike was there. Boom. All the ingredients for a good time. Not drinking is getting closer to being no problem. I was fine and happy and enjoyed myself. Then I pedaled home on my trike with my girlfriend standing in the basket.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

For sale. Boom.

Borrowing my mom's nice camera and starting a Photobucket account have made eBay auction-listing much smoother. I listed more stuff. I'm selling my little Raleigh Folder bicycle. I listed stuff on Craigslist too. I found an acoustic Yamaha guitar that's been sitting around since I brought it home from work at 1-800-GOT-JUNK. That was awhile ago. Now it's for sale. Boom.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hot chips and eBay listings.

I went to the Herr's chip factory with Kristin. In my estimation, the best dates are mid-day and include hot potato chips off a conveyor belt. Nerdy as sin? Count me in.

I shipped out a ton of bicycle parts from finished eBay auctions. I took one of my Adderall half-pills and listed 19 more items for sale. A titanium stem, a Bridgestone CB-1 frame, a Giant Nutra frame...

I got the official 'ok' to sorta move in with my folks while I finish up college in the fall. So if I want to do that... I can do that.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Adderall prescription: check.

Honestly, I doubt I'd've been getting so much done over the past few weeks without some help. But I also can't keep "borrowing" Ritalin. I was cut off with the terms that I had to make an appointment to get my own prescription.

I made the appointment, and it took about 10 minutes. I didn't need a therapist, I just paid $110 out of pocket to talk to a doctor for a checkup. I said I had ADHD. I said I had projects, and I couldn't get anything done. I'm happy and healthy, but I can't run an errand to save myself.

10mg of Adderall before a work shift, or when you need a brain that is able to prioritize and accomplish tasks. That's the prescription. I went to Wal-Mart, got the pills, and cut all them in half so they'll last longer. It was about the easiest thing I've ever done, and I am hoping that it will help. I'm hoping that this small bit of help will allow me to pursue my long term goals more vigorously. I've made a lot of money on eBay in the past few weeks, and I want to keep that momentum.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Five bikes and a lotta boxes.

Today, I headed to Kennett. Same as I do most every week for several days. After work, I loaded my van. An old goofy tandem, my Raleigh Twenty, a cheap old ATB... it all got loaded up, and it's all getting photographed and sold. I loaded up five bicycles (5.5 if you consider the tandem), and a ton of boxes and packing materials for eBay sales. I hit the road with a van and a transmission that works.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Another strong bicycle installation.

Work was finished for the day. I clocked out and perched myself on a stool for a moment of reflection. Work benches were cleaned, the floor was swept, and locks were locked. I looked out the front door and saw our best customer. Fidel had my co-worker's attention, and there was a plastic crate in his hand. It could mean only one thing. I retreated to the bathroom, as my co-worker made progress toward his bicycle and home.

I sat on the toilet with the lid down and my pants up. I hunched forward and rested my forehead on the heels of my hands. I sat there breathing and waiting; letting a couple minutes slip by. 

I sat long enough to form some thoughts and look at myself. I am not responsible for anyone but myself. The shop is closed. And finally: treat other people the way you would like to be treated. 

I stood up, and took long confident paces to the front door. I unlocked the door and opened it. It was a few minutes later, but Fidel was still milling about on the sidewalk holding a big blue box. 

"Fidel! Come on, my friend!" I motioned for him to enter the store.

We went through the usual process of explanation. By now, I get the deal. He shows up with some clapped out bicycle and a plastic box with a hinged lid that I think he gets from behind a CVS somewhere. He needs the box to stay on the bicycle so he can use the setup to deliver food. Fidel pointed to the crate and to the bike. 

I like him. He's a character. He shows genuine appreciation when you help him out. Even though I can't say that we can communicate using words, I think we both have an understanding. We're both reasonable and decent humans. He wasn't drunk. He wasn't drinking beer and he didn't seem to have beer with him. Maybe he quit too. He insisted on buying me a soda next door.

I put the heavy bicycle in the stand and lined everything up. I made some marks with a marker and some holes with a drill. I used some of the random hardware that he brought me, and some stuff we had at the shop. For the fourth or fifth time so far, I did a damned good job.

What's 45 minutes? I told him there was no charge, and he insisted on tipping. We smiled and shared a solid handshake.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Pasta and Kix cereal. Why not.

7:21pm. I stayed in and ate a ton of pasta and Kix cereal. I watched a lot of episodes of Prison Break.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Skipping Mates of State show.

I skipped the Mates of State show in favor of sitting in my golden chair. There was plenty of sitting involved, and not much moving.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Perkins has the weakest coffee allowed by science.

I was at Perkins with my folks. I sit on one side of the booth, and they sit on the other. I have my back to a wall whenever such a position is possible. I drank weak coffee and told them I have an appointment with a therapist set up for Monday.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sometimes it's time for some pants.

I got some blue jeans earlier. First of all, it's Valentines Day, so there's that. I was at the Olive Garden for lunch with my parents and my girlfriend, and then I decided that I wanted some new pants. I only have one pair of pants that doesn't have some lousy aspect going on. Now I have two, and I've got high hopes for these new boxers as well.

Monday, February 13, 2012

I call this one "New Transmission"

I woke up with a girl under my arm and decided to go to breakfast. We listened to Green Day and Phil Collins in a double-wide diner until it was time to cross the street. I paid $1060.00 to another guy named Chris, and drove away with a new transmission. These are the times. This is when a breeze is music and tall grass is the hand of God.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Rides, and riding toward a ride...

Well, I wasn't going to ask for a ride, but if you're offering...

My Mom called me at work to ask if I wanted a ride home. I was going to figure something else out, 'cause I felt sheepish being van-less for a third Sunday. But she claimed not to mind, so I was happy to accept the offer.

I stayed after work to finish work on my KHS Professional road bicycle. It's a single speed with three cog choices and a bunch of spacers on an Ultegra hub. It's not too shabby. It rolls like mercury down a windowpane, and white handlebar tape is all the else I have to say.

I rode swiftly into a strong headwind to arrive at the rendezvous.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Knock-off Apple Jacks

If I actually rode a bicycle as much as I think about them, I'd be on the moon right now. Trust me. And tell me if you agree: a person who bids on your shit and doesn't pay you is an irredeemable motherfucker. To the moon! I ate mostly a whole bag of knock-off Apple Jacks.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Single speed KHS? Nearly complete.

I got a ride home from Mike. I was at the bicycle shop late horsing around and making myself a single speed. Thank goodness I didn't actually have to ride the thing home.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Pizza and soda in bed.

I'm sitting around on my bed. Me and my girl are rich with pizza and soda. We're practically famous with it. Internet ordering makes it so you barely have to mumble three words to another human before you're holding food.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tiny Tacos > Wintery Mix

What I do is I get some tortillas. What I use inside is a box of Goya. Rice and beans is easy, but a box with a bag in it is one step closer to food. Pre-seasoned and it's $2. I put some sour cream in there if it's a good day, and yes - heaven smiled upon me this evening. Tiny tacos with hot sauce sprinkled on every bite. And the wintery mix was kept at bay.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Cashing in a jug of money.

Oh, the bank. Or credit union in my case. I cashed in half a wine jug full of coins. There was also a keychain and at least one small bud of marijuana in there. The pot wasn't worth much, but the rest of it totaled $171.56. I put that in savings and transferred the remainder to bring my savings account to $300. Now I'm saving. $300 per month will add up to a new van in a couple years, and that's the point.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Goal and plans; dirt and flight.

I shipped a ton of eBay items today. A ton more are ending later. I also have more to list.

Taking a single tiny Ritalin makes a huge difference. It's not the shocking miracle it seemed like the first day I tried it, but it's an extremely helpful nudge in the right direction. I feel like - and this comes as a shock - I'm able to operate like a normal person. I was sure in the past that I was shitty-lazy, but I think my psychology is in fact more complicated. I have huge aspirations and wonderful ideas. I have goals and plans. Somehow I let all of it get heaped under a pile of dirt. Now I'm ready to brush it off again and see if it can fly.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Making money; spending money. And "The Superbowl"

I just got finished with working six days in a row. The van isn't finished, but it will be... soon. I'm looking at the totals from my listed auctions and estimating what my next paycheck might look like. I'm hoping there's enough left over to get a laptop. My big laptop is down with a nasty virus and it's not exactly new or reliable anymore. At the expense of sounding like a spendy materialist consumer, I'm thinking MacBook Pro.

But what I was really doing was being at a Superbowl party. No, I didn't know many people. No, I didn't drink. Yes, I wanted to leave early. Yeah, it was alright.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Selling parts; wishing I was buying other parts.

My eBay auctions totaled over $1000 at some point today. That's not what I'll net, but it looks great on a computer screen. I can pay for the van's transmission and my new bicycle.

7:21pm: Re-listing some unsold eBay parts and generally ogling other parts which are expensive. I wish I didn't want a shitload of expensive bicycle parts, but I do. I know I don't need them, but it doesn't help. I feel like I somehow deserve DT Swiss 240s hubs.

Friday, February 3, 2012

I have a runny nose.

I started to feel ill today. I can handle catastrophic events in stride, but give me a runny nose and you'd think somebody died.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


I started the day off right. I took the trike to work listening to dubstep. That's a great way to alter reality in the morning.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Riding tricycles and such.

We triked out to get cereal and some money from the ATM. She stood on the back. One audacious motorist didn't like this, and my middle finger eased up in response: a calm, silent reply. A reflex as automatic as taking a breath. Overall, it was a good day.