Thursday, February 17, 2011
Unintended consequences are something I have experienced all my life. From a young age I have experienced them with the zeal of youthful indifference. While unintended might be a misnomer, some would claim just plain stupidity was at play, worrying about possible outcomes was never my forte.
I learned very early that skin was cheap and it would grow back. Yep, bones break and they heal. Get cut? Mom spent many hours with me at the doctor getting stitched up. Pain was just the price of admission for the adrenalin rush that I took from questionable stunts during childhood play. Simple things like riding a bike out in front of my mother’s friend’s car to see if she could stop. She couldn’t and I bled a little and experienced road rash. Me being me once wasn’t enough and three days later it was time for an encore. Damn it, she still hadn’t learned to stop. More blood and road rash and now neither my sister nor I had a bicycle. Those all were unintended consequences. I really did think she could stop the first time and KNEW she would the second. Nine year olds just don’t think things out clearly. Besides if I had I would have still done it because there was a chance she would have missed me. Looking back today I understand my folks not letting me get a motorcycle when they had to pay the doctor bills. There…more unintended consequences.
Fast forward to the calm, mature me of today. Life is pretty sweet and flowing along on a nice even keel. Four months out from being part of a Mr. and Mrs. again and then those pesky unintended consequences rear their ugly heads again. A simple little thing like a conversation about retirement plans goes and messes with me. Got me to thinking I should look into my plumbing pension that I haven’t bothered with in twenty-two years. Give the place a jingle and they say yep you got one coming. I ask when I can start drawing the thing and they say, “three years ago.” WHAT? Unintended consequences times two. On the one hand if I had kept up with the thing I could have been retired, officially, for three years. On the second hand now that I’m filing the paper work that means I’m in dire danger of becoming an old geezer. Wonder what I’ll look in plaid shorts and a striped shirt?
Officially, legally, a retiree in a few weeks? I was looking forward to being able to retire, but I was waiting until I was old. The unintended consequence of talking has brought me to the conclusion that despite my protests I am moving quickly into the Old Fart neighborhood.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
With the truck purchased and after a little over a month elapsed it was time to look into the final piece of the puzzle. The process was almost exactly the same as the truck. Craig's List consulted. Numerous discussions about what we wanted/needed and what we were willing/able to spend. Decisions were formulated and it was time to start looking at actual trailers and not just pictures. Off we went looking for a steal.
It was soon apparent that toy hauler owners were related to diesel owners. They owned it and it was worth at least what they paid for it four to six years ago. Reduced the price because it needs a little work was a flag for the repairs will cost more than the trailer is worth. A little repair meant the entire roof needed to be replaced. Minor cosmetic issues equaled it had a gaping hole in the side where they got 'a little' too close to a post/tree/or something else. A simple fix could be a new air conditioner to a missing generator.
After finding By Owner units not to our liking we looked at Dealers with used units. Again, while they weren't as bad, they all seemed to have issues. We came to the opinion that it might serve us better to buy a new one and be done with it.
The final result is a 27 foot Stellar by Eclipse. We brought her home and parked her in the front side yard, I plugged her in, and started learning how everything worked. Started the generator, turned on the AC, and turned everything on and off a few times. Things were going good as Linda was leaving town for the weekend. Next morning it was plugged into the house 110 and after about 45 minutes all of the electric went out. I called the Dealer to ask for some advise and was told the GFI was probably bad and if I came down they would give me a new one. I did, it wasn't, and after two hours in a hot trailer I gave up.
Showed up Monday morning with the trailer in tow and was informed I couldn't bring it in without an appointment. So, I went back to the truck, pulled it crosswise across their driveway and started unhooking it. They ran out to ask what I thought I was doing and I informed them we were exercising our right to change our mind within the first 72 hours and wanted our money back. Somehow they found an open appointment. I left with a grin like the cat that just ate the canary. Well, two can play the game and it was over two weeks before we got the trailer back. It took a call to the manufacturer to get them to complete the repairs. When I picked it up they claimed there was nothing wrong with it and they had kept it to be sure. Yea, right.
When we finally got it back it it has been perfect since. It has been down in Bisbee, Arizona twice, on the ranch. The first time we spent a three day weekend there for a memorial for Linda's dad and left it there for the week, returning the next Friday to spend another weekend and pick up Linda's mom and uncle. Second time was for four days for Linda's uncle's funeral. It also kept us warm for three nights across New Years out at Lake Pleasant. That name was an oxymoron though as it never got above 36 degrees with snow and rain most of the time.
So, here is the Man Cave in all of her splendid glory. Now we just have to find the time and money to load up Petunia and really become Trailer Queens.
Posted by Arizona Harley Dude at 5:00 AM
Friday, February 11, 2011
A tough looking group of bikers were riding when they saw a girl about to jump off a bridge so they stop.
The leader, a big burly man, gets off his bike and says, "What are you doing?"
"I'm going to commit a suicide," she says.
While he did not want to appear insensitive, he didn't want to miss an opportunity, so he
asked, "Well, before you jump, why don't you give me a kiss?"
So, she does and it was a long, deep lingering kiss. After she's finished the biker says, "Wow! That was the best kiss I have ever had. That's a real talent you are wasting. You could be famous. Why are you committing suicide?"
"My parents don't like me dressing up like a girl......"
Ride safe this weekend.
Sunday, February 6, 2011
The result is Brutis, a ¾ ton, 6.6L Duramax turbo-diesel, Allison 6 speed transmission, 17,000 pound towing capacity, stump pulling, Z71 4 X 4, monster of a truck. This is a new generation engine that makes a total of 397 hp at 3,000 rpm and a peak torque of 765 lb-ft at 1,600 rpm. With all of that power if I keep my foot out of the accelerator it gets 20 mpg on the highway empty, close to 16 mpg in town, and just under 11 towing on the highway.
Posted by Arizona Harley Dude at 6:49 AM