Unpaid product review – NeverKink hose

When we bought the house, I got two 100′ hoses. I sort of blindly picked them out at Home Depot – there’s not a lot of choice in the 100′ heavy-duty hose selection, so I got the ones that said “NEVER KINK” in 400 point font. Guess what?

IT’S A LIE.

It’s a really despicable lie. It’s a brand name, not a product affirmation. The guarantee is a product replacement guarantee – you couldn’t pay me to replace the two awful hoses I have with two brand new awful hoses.

Never ever buy the NeverKink brand of hose. They are some of the kinkiest hoses I’ve ever tried to manhandle into submission. (Dear god, what kind of hits am I going to get from that phrase?) They are extremely stiff, they kink at the slightest provocation, and the connectors are really hard to work. It’s apparently impossible to drain a 100′ hose, too – despite my careful coiling last weekend, the stupid things froze solid in our cold snap. Yesterday was the last straw – it took me a good 5 minutes to get the damn hose threaded onto the damn hydrant, then when I turned it on water exploded from the connector and soaked me, then no amount of stomping, banging, or cursing would dislodge the ice chunks in the NeverKink hose.

Eventually I gave up and dumped the frozen 18 gallon bucket into the de-icer’d 100 gallon tank. Luckily for everyone, the 4″ chunk of ice didn’t break the de-icer when it slammed into the tub. There would have been tears, I promise you that.

Today I bought a Goodyear hose. I am pleased to report that it’s much more pliable, it screws on to my FF hydrant much more easily, and it doesn’t appear to kink as easily. It’s only 50′, so it doesn’t reach the tank, but I took the hacksaw to the wicked NeverKink hose and extended the Goodyear the extra 15′ I needed.

Then I coiled the new hybrid hose neatly into the empty 18 gallon tub and took it in the house. I can learn from my mistakes, and I’m not letting the new one freeze.

Yawn, I’m back

I hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! (Unless you’re not American. But then you’re missing out – this is the best holiday we have!) I’ve been keeping up with everybody and it seems like yall all had a good thankful holiday. Go give Andrea a hello, though – she has a lot on her plate right now.

We had some snow earlier this week, then ridiculously cold temps. It was 7 or 8 when I woke up for three mornings in a row – and no, I don’t mean 7 am, I mean 7 degrees Fahrenheit! Yuck.
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The goats are angry when it snows, and the chickens are confused when it’s cold, but Dixie is impervious to everything. I didn’t blanket her because she never shivered. That stupid coat may make her too sweaty to compete, but it sure works great for keeping her warm.

Yesterday I built a pair of very handsome sawhorses. I think the wood is fir – it’s some re-usable timbers that were part of the junk heap in the backyard. It’s too seasoned to nail well, but if I pre-drill the holes it works fine. And they’re free, yippie!
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I dragged them into the Blue Room. The carpet in there is terrible, so that’s going to be my work space for re-doing the doors. I bought new-used doors off of craigslist back when we bought the house, and I haven’t gotten around to hanging them yet. But the “walnut” doors in the hall are starting to bug me.

This isn’t a very good picture for any purposes, but can you see how the doors are enormous black holes? Hate it!
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The current doors are “walnut” hued fake-grained pressboard. The new-used doors are pre-primed heavyweight hollowcore interior doors, with real wood veneers. Much heavier and nicer. I’ve got replacements for most of the doors in the hallway, but two of them are very small so I’m going to try to refinish them. I’ll sand the gloss off, prime, maybe sand again, and paint. I did some test sanding on the door to the Blue Room (it’s cracked, so it’s coming down no matter what) and it’s really hard to sand without roughing up the door so it looks “fuzzy.” Anyway, the broken door will be my test piece.

I don’t think I showed yall this awesome painting my mom sent for my birthday! It’s better than the real Dixie, because in the painting she has a snow-white mane and tail. 😉 I really do love this.
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I’m thinking about tackling the front room, too. We both thought it was a weird room when we first saw the house. It makes a terrible first impression – it looks very long and narrow, like a giant hallway tacked on the front of the house. There’s a full-wall flagstone fireplace against one wall, a lovely triple window in another, and varnished wainscoting and “crown molding” on the third. The fourth wall is the opening to the hall and kitchen and front door. If you’re standing by the hall/front door, it looks like the room goes on forever to a distant looming rock pile. Other people don’t seem to care, but the trim makes me grit my teeth – it’s DOOR TRIM. Stuck on the wall, up against the ceiling. It has nothing in common with real crown molding except its location. The “molding” and the wainscoting are varnished natural wood, and the sheetrock is textured and painted (of course) glossy white. The whole effect is horrendous.

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We got out the tape and measured – the room is actually 12 1/2′ by 17′. It’s plenty big! It’s just dominated by bad design choices. You can’t tell from the pictures, but every bit of the trim in this room is door trim. Door trim at the bottom of the wainscoting, door trim at the top of the wainscoting, door trim along the edge of the ceiling… gggrrrrrrr…

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My plan right now is to finish out the trim correctly, then paint the trim and wainscoting off-white semi-gloss. The wall above the wainscoting will be a bold color – G is leaning toward the oranges and reds, I like the chocolates and tans that complement the flagstones. The other walls will be the off-white version of the bold color. We are sort of thinking “dining room,” but I dunno. I am not great at putting furniture in rooms, just making the walls look good. :)

Things I found

While looking for my truck title:

A typewritten, laminated Blockbuster card
Three empty toilet paper rolls (in a desk drawer)
A bag of Pepperidge Farms cookies (empty, curses)
My birth certificate and expired passport (you should see my hair)
Leases for 5 of the last 6 apartments we rented
My tax return from 1998
My law school diploma
Coggins for every horse I ever owned (and one I never owned)
Four years of Geico proof of insurance cards
Proof of rabies vaccination for Linux, my first Lab
The original lienholder paperwork for my truck
Registration for my truck in TN, MS, and NV
The title for the Yellow Death Trailer

Now I am at the DMV with the paperwork for a replacement title. :(

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Oooh Garmin, I hate you

Friday I had a lovely ride with ~C and the critters. She came out to my place and picked us up, then we headed about 5 miles up the road into Antelope Valley and parked. We took the horses, of course, and the dogs.

The howling winds gentle breezes were still caressing the land, so I wasn’t really sure how Dixie would act. She loaded well and even stood well to get her neck clipped. She started off a little giraffe-headed, but we walked for the first couple of miles and she settled into work very well. Diego was completely horrified about C’s windbreaker, which was making some alarming crackling snapping sounds, but he eventually got his game face on too.

It’s funny how our horses are so different. Dig is completely sweet, a little squirrely, and needs to be asked to slow down in order to calm down. He responds to the normal advice you get about horses – ask him to slow down, ask him to move his feet, get his brain back. Dixie is independent minded and distrustful, and she needs to go faster in order to slow down. If she spooks or starts off hot, I have to let her go forward. Trot or canter, it doesn’t matter – she has to have the freedom to move for a few strides. Then I can ask her to slow down, and she will. If I try to boss her around without letting her have those few strides of freedom, we just get in a huge fight and get angry with each other.

Cersei is an old hat at endurance training. She stayed near us the whole time (and kept Diego on edge.) C’s dog Molly is much younger and more excitable, so she covered WAY more miles darting off to chase rabbits (and popped back up to keep Dixie on edge.) I don’t know how Molly is feeling, but Cersei has been an exceptionally snoozy dog today!

The area is where Rides of March is held, but we took a new trail. It’s not really suitable to run a ride over, but it was super cool to train on. We found trees! They were junipers, so they’re more like overgrown shrubs, but they’re big enough to feel like you’re in a very sparse forest. We followed a cow trail up a hill, then found a dirt bike trail, then eventually popped out on this absolutely lovely ridge. The path down was very narrow and dry, so we walked the horses down the hill again. It was SO pretty.

Friday’s ride was pretty much my one-year Garmin anniversary. The stupid Garmin Connect site isn’t working correctly for me right now, or I’d show you my pitiful stats. Instead, here’s the post from a year ago. We really have come a long way, and I’m so proud of Dixie.

Here’s Friday’s ride. Almost 14 miles, tooling along at a calm steady pace.

Garmin Connect has “teamed up” with Microsoft to “improve” my “experience” by using Bing maps. I hate Bing maps. I like Google Maps, or even topo maps – the whole thing about Nevada riding is the hills! What good is it if I can’t see the hills? And it’s not like GC was ever very useful to play with aggregate data. The only interesting thing I can tell you is that in the last 365 days, Dixie and I have done 577.49 miles (with the GPS on.)

So I’m looking for a new GPS analysis program for the Mac. I am trialing rubiTrack, TrailRunner, and Ascent. Does anybody know of any other options? All three that I’m trying out seem to have pros and cons, but they use REAL maps and let you play with the data.