Monday, May 19, 2008

Done Deal

Ok it's done!! Yeah!!!!

The tile is done in the kitchen and the baseboards and trim are painted. The floor is clean and the kitchen is habitable again. You don't realize how much you miss your kitchen until it's gone. So nice to have it back.

Muchos Gracias Senior Kurt for coming over today and helping me paint. I was going a bit stir crazy. The Behr paint I originally bought was not very good, we stopped by Loew's for some Valspar and with one coat, it covered. No more Behr paint ever again.

The dogs love the new tile floors. It was nearly 100 today and they stayed very cool when I would let them in that is.

Dog hair and wet paint don't mix.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Almost There

At 9:48am this morning I finished the last of the grout that I needed to put down. Just a few quick shots, now I need to clean up the tiles and put the new baseboards on. Many thanks to Mike for coming by last night to help with the grout.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Point Of No Return

There comes a time in a home improvement project you reach the point of no return. That moment came today when I ripped up all the linoleum flooring in the kitchen. It does not come up in one piece that you can put back down. Think of trying to re-wrap a present you've ripped open with the same paper. It's not going to happen.

So the final stages of tileapoolza begins. It's the kitchen/pantry/laundry room. Many thanks to Jeremy, Jason and Ryan who assisted this morning with the appliance removal. And hats off to Ryan for ripping up the biggest piece of linoleum. I think it was the proudest moment of his life.

It's almost 11 pm and I'm pooped. I had planned on cutting and setting all the tile today, but it's not going to happen. There's no race to get this done and tile is permanent and so are your mistakes. So I'm going to shower and hit the sack.

I'm pooped.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

That 70's Car

Lee Iaccoca and Barack's Unloved Ford Granada

And just as I was warming up to Barack Obama...

From the Detroit News May 7, 2007
"The car I learned to drive on was my grandfather's Ford Granada. ... It may be the worst car that Detroit ever built," the Illinois senator said in an interview with Indianapolis radio station WFBQ. "This thing was a tin can. It was during the '70s when oil had just gone up, so they were trying to compete with the Japanese," Obama said. "They wanted to keep the cars big, so they made them out of tin foil. It would rattle and shake. You basically couldn't go over 80 (miles per hour) without the thing getting out of control."

Oh, now it's personal.

First off, Detroit was not competing with the Japanese in the 1970's. They were still a blip on the radar screen at the time. The benchmark compact at the time was the Volkswagen Rabbit. Americans ate them up so much VW built a plant in Pennsylvania to build them here. (It was later sold to Chrysler). We were also still in love with the VW Beetle. Japan was coming around the bend, but would not hit their stride until the 1980's.

Most every car we can remember from the 70's was crap. Cus we can remember them. Compared to today's cars, every car from pre-1994 was crap. A computer from the 80's is crap today. Technology marches on, and it does come in bigger packages and smaller one's too. Cars are built with evolving technology in metal/plastic/design/manufacturing/electronics... etc. I could go on and on here. Tomorrow's cars are going to be built better then today's cars are, and so on.

I own two iconic cars that had their platforms and sheet metal launched in the 70's. My e24 88 635csi was originally launched in 1977 and my 1990 Mustang GT was launched in September of 1978. Both cars are iconic in that they are the primary two coupes of that period that maintained their basic sheet metal through their entire runs. The 635csi from 1977 to 1988 and the 'stang from 1979 to 1993.

Build quality? Undeniably polar opposites. Price, just the same. In 1988 my BMW cost about $49,000 and my Mustang GT would have run you about $15,000. Twenty years later, the BMW is built like a tank and the doors close with a beautiful thud like the day they were new. The Mustang, more clank/thud. The leather and trim in the BMW, amazing for a 20 year old car. The Mustang, well I had to redo it all. Both cars have about 113,000 miles on them too. One month of Mustang production was more then one year of BMW 635Csi production. So, in 1977 my BMW cost about $23,000 and Barack Obama would not find it a tin can. Other then that, most cars of the time were about $5,000 to $7000 and he would find them very much at tin can. Too bad he did not have a BMW to learn to drive in.

Ford/GM build what America wants. Dell builds what America wants. McDonald's cooks what America eats. It's our free-market economy and until the government says otherwise, we decide what to buy. Ford could not take a stand of not making large SUV's if America wanted them. GM would be glad to build America as many SUV's as we could grab. Ford's shareholders would scream bloody murder and put someone in who would build SUV's. Who are the shareholders of Ford and GM? Why most of America. These two corporate icon's are largely held by institutional investors, ie your 401k's, mutual funds, pension plans and so on. Their profits end up in your portfolio one way or another. Two large companies cannot sit down together and come up with product plans, that's collusion. Like many American corporations, they get short sited by quarterly profit reports to please Wall Street, honestly we're all to blame here folks.

Picking on Ford/GM for 70's cars is about the lowest hanging fruit I can possibly think of, even worse for someone who aspires to be president and they need to win Michigan. And on top of it, you got it wrong. And why are you going 80 mph when the national speed limit was 55 mph? Why are you taking a machine that was made to go 70 mph and complain that it doesn't feel good at 80 mph? My mountain bike is great up to 20 mph, but I sure as hell don't want to be on it at 40 mph.

You almost had me.