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Gimme Hats

Gimme hat and wringin' out a piece of bowling equipment. Arizona Desert 2011

Gimme hat and wringin’ out a dangerous piece of black bowling equipment. Arizona Desert 2011

Friday, April 2 was the date for a supply run to Lytle and a vet visit for Vela Von.  The last time I went after groceries was 90 days ago and truth be known, I could have made it a coupla more weeks with what was on hand but chicken, beans and rice were getting old.   The one thing I truly, truly missed were fresh eggs. Spent $300 at the Super HEB and $149 at the vet. Oh, and a few bucks at McD’ to satisfy the craving for a (few) double cheeseburger.    Vela Von is now inoculated, micro-chipped and worm free.  When I went to pick her up, she near pulled the attendant off her feet when she spied me at the other end of the hall.  She is becoming a lean, barrel chested mass of muscles @ 46lbs and 6 months old.  I had it in my mind to start her e-collar training in earnest on her half year birthday.  That we are doing;  I’ll let you know how that works out.

Just somethin' about that M14 bowlin' paraphernalia that gets next to me.

New Tru Spec headgear. Just somethin’ about that M14 bowlin’ paraphernalia that gets next to me.

On a slow gate like this I usually forego my big ass straw hat for a ball cap.  I got a sack full of gimme caps with various oil patch / puckerbrush writin’ on them.  I gave up on logo’d t-shirts some time back because it just did not seemly for a man my age and I seldom wear short sleeve anything because of the sun.  When I was going through the sack full of hats I noticed not a single one was Made in the USA; Viet Nam, China, Bangladesh, Taiwan but nada in the US. That flew all over me more than just a little  since the oil bidness is just about as much  True Blue Born in the USA as it gets.   I chucked ’em all and got on Amazon and ordered up a Tru-Spec cotton contractor’s cap – actually I got two of ’em with the second one being camo.  Camo is good and it is the uniform of the day for many of the locals down in these parts.  The tag on both says “Cut, sewn and assembled in the USA”. That is more like it!  Bonus is they have a velcro patch on the front where you can attach all manner of high speed, low drag patches. BFF Cait tells me she is gonna pick me up some choice ones at the BX.

Most of y’all know I can’t really hear worth a damn these days.  It was cumulative and highly predictable so I do not lament the disability.  Way back in the day when I was barely a teenager man, I spent countless hours on a Ford 5000 diesel farm tractor that didn’t even have a muffler — just a rusty exhaust pipe coming up out of that flat hood a few feet in front of me.  You never saw a farm tractor back then with an air conditioned sound proof cab on it. Never!  Oh me, that sucker was loud and how the black smoke would roll when you gassed it. That was merely the start of decades of loud engines AND rock and roll with the volume to the 11 notch; just stuff like that.  It took its’ toll.

One of the “perks” I give myself when there is a weekly check comin’ to me is a Premium DISH HD subscription.

Pyle wireless TV amplifier

Pyle wireless TV amplifier

I do so enjoy all the movies and special series on the subscription channels!  It passes the long hours here on the gate and truth be known the TV is seldom turned off.   There IS a bug of sorts with the HD channels and it concerns the volume.  Seems it is lower and even when you crank it wide open the volume is still lackin’ –doubly so in my case since I don’t hear so good.  I got a  Miracle Ear from Amazon and that did help quite a bit.   It was a hearing aid and I learned to live with all the rustling and busyness in the background noise because I could hear the TV much better.  Well sir, Vela Von snatched that Miracle Ear off the dinette when I laid it down to go answer the gate.  It did pass out  VV’s other end much worse for wear so scratch one Miracle Ear.  I am glad the pup survived!

Watching TV with no hearing disability equipment proved to be frustrating as all get out!  Some channels had volume SO low it just made me mad to try and watch something.  I had to get some relief and I finally broke down and ordered a Pyle wireless TV Headset and I must say I am well pleased.  It works way better than the Miracle Ear and the sound is so crisp and clear I am remembering what it was like to really enjoy watching a good movie!  The unit hangs off your ears and then sorta like a necklace in front of you so that does take some getting used to but it is not a deal breaker.  Matter of fact, I am thinking of ordering a second just for a spare since two is one and one is none.

There haven’t been but a few days strung together all winter when we didn’t have to fire up the AC when the afternoon sun started beating on the NO Princess Palace .  Vela Von and I were sittin’ here Thursday down in the shank of the afternoon and the AC was running when all hell broke loose.   It sounded like some fool was on the roof with a jackhammer runnin’ full out and I was  like WTF!!! and Vela Von was barking her fool head off.   Turns out the squirrel cage blower fan on the Dometic AC went tits up just like that – BAM!  Once I figured out what the scoop was I got to plottin’ what my best course of action was.  You DO NOT survive a puckerbrush summer without beaucoup AC BTUs.  Not happenin’!  First order was to get the window shaker hung in the bedroom. Along with a fan, it would just have to do for now.  Next order of business was to decide whether to fix or replace the AC.   I knew what was wrong with it and if I was runnin’ a tight budget and up at the Secret Hideout  I probably would have gone the cheaper though possibly more time consuming route of replacing the fan.  Facts are though I am on the front Lines down here in South Texas.  The AC is 6 years old and it had seen some of the toughest duty imaginable.  I do NOT have a ton of resources available to fix it nor the time to chase parts.  Best choice is to R&R the unit and be done with it.

Now you know your ownself if you have had a recreational vehicle for any amount of time nothing is ever simple.  This go ’round I found out my Dometic AC unit has been discontinued and replaced by a Brisk Air II 15k btu model.   So now I was trying to figure out if my control box and thermostat would work with the upgraded rooftop unit and it was just damned confusing.   Amazon has this unit but I was not comfortable ordering it in case it was the wrong flavor.  Items that ship truck freight can be problematic if you have to return them through Amazon.  I turned to PPL Motorhomes to find out the real skinny.  I have found the PPL  phone techs to be knowledgeable and helpful in the past and it is worth paying a little more to get the right part the first time.   The AC unit is enroute and I am going to try and save the $300-$400 the Mobil RV Tech wants to install it and do it myself.  Stay tuned to see how this hot mess (literally) turns out.

Y’all enjoy this post while I go fix a late brunch.  I been thinkin’ about fried eggs, skillet pork chops and some bacon since last night.  I think I am gonna get after that right now.

 

End Note:  The album Traveler by Chris Stapleton.  I seldom, seldom list an entire album in End Notes but sometimes you just gotta.  I first mentioned Chris Stapleton in a Note a month or so back though I have featured his former group The Steeldrivers many times. All I got to say is if you have not pleasured your ears with some o’  this, you need to.

Here is Adele ( of all people) doing a better than fair cover of a Stapleton penned tune.

 

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Gimme Hats, 9.9 out of 10 based on 17 ratings
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7 comments to Gimme Hats

  • Michael

    Just a little bowling ball info. As a 30 year Army Veteran, you have too much finger on the trigger. That will cause you to pull right or left. They teach to only use the very end tip of the finger.

    Michael

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  • Mike

    Good luck on the A/C swap. Updating and making sure all the old model existing thermostat stuff works together can be a bear to understand properly. Did you get the one with the ‘hair dryer’ heat strip element for just semi-chilly mornings? PPL, Tweety’s and etrailer tend to be three of my ‘go to’ guys for fair prices and proper replacement parts.

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    • Andy

      Mike, no heat strip. The PPL guy told me my existing control box and thermostat will work with this new unit. We shall see.

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  • ITGuy

    My rear AC also needs replaced before the heat of the summer hits Iowa. I can get by with just the one most of the time, but there are days in July and August where it takes both of them to keep the inside temps in the double digits. Given that my motorhome has 30 amp service, I had to do some custom wiring on the rear unit so that I can plug it into “the world’s most badass power strip” (as I call it) in order to be able to run both at once.

    The installation seems simple and straightforward enough. The aspect of the job I’m still trying to ponder through, since this will be a solo mission, is how to get objects of that size and weight up and down from the roof, preferably with all windows remaining intact….

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    • Andy

      I am hoping to borrow a front loader from the ranch for about 30 minutes to do the lifting.

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  • ITGuy

    That sounds like a good plan. Now that you mention it, the owner of the park I stay in does have a tractor that he puts around in occasionally with a loader on the front. I’ll have to see if I can negotiate a little assistance from him.

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  • Lynette Bailey

    Methinks Chris Stapleton has a Travis Tritt sound. Good luck on the AC installation.

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