Monday, August 17, 2009

English Is A Funny Language

Recently on PBS there was a promo where a guy was saying why he liked PBS. He pronounced "public" like pubic with a "L". That got me to thinking (and yes it did hurt) about the two words. They both start with the same three letters (pub), but those letters are pronounced differently depending on what follows the first three letters. The thing that makes English a funny language (not funny ha-ha, but funny as in weird) is there are a bunch of words where how the letters sound depend on the rest of the letters in the word. That can make it hard to read because you go back and forth on some words (especially those $4 dollar words). You think it is going to be one way and after you see the whole word, you realize it's different.

I don't know if there are any other languages where the sound of the letters change depending on what word they are in.

Digital TV Update

Last Friday I found another signal and now have a total of 5 channels. Before I had 3 channels of PBS and now I also have CW and ABC. After the switch to digital, I did autoscan a few times with the antenna turned in the approximate direction trying get channel 5 with no success. Judging by their website, the reason I couldn't get their signal was because it wasn't there. Yesterday morning was kinda foggy and yucky and then became windy and the signal was breaking up. Most of the time I had a picture, but the sound would come and go. So, I made some more firewood as there were some trees within about 50 feet of my antenna and in the direction the antenna was pointing. Not sure if that helped or not, only time will tell.

Scanning for channels with my converter box was not easy. I was able to figure out how to do autoscan, but manual scanning wouldn't work. Nowhere in the book that came with the box did it say to scan manually that after you select a channel you have to press OK. I figured that out accidentally.

The problem is that when the weather is such that I don't feel like being outside, the signal is hit and miss. It's a good thing I have DVD's and tapes.

Monday, August 3, 2009


I was going to do a post on retirement, but for some reason last time I got side-tracked with my last post.

Anywho, they say a lot of people have trouble adjusting to retirement. I have been getting ready for retirement my entire working life. The longest I have worked at one place is when I was in the military (3 years, 8 months and 7 days, that's what it says on my DD214) and that's because I couldn't quit. I did work at a ceiling tile plant for 5 years but I worked there twice with a 2 year gap between working as a carpenter. I left the ceiling tile plant the last time because they stopped using wood for their tile and I thought it was the beginning of the end. I thought the only reason the plant was located UP on the tundra (instead of in the cheap-labor South like the rest of their plants) was the supply of wood. They would have to ship in all the raw materials and ship out the finished goods. Well, the plant has gone thru a number of owners since then, but 30 years later it is still running.

I have had a variety of jobs. I've been a carpenter, migrant aircraft mechanic and a truck driver. Also golf course groundskeeper, K-Mart employee and an interment excavator. Been fired a couple of times, quit a bunch of times and a few times arranged to get laid off so I could draw unemployment between jobs.

I have a lot of gaps in my work history that I like to call Quality Time!! I figured out a long time ago that there is no company loyalty. They expect you to be an obedient, loyal servant, but they'll get rid of you in a heartbeat. What's really interesting is when an employer says it is employment at will and you say that works both ways. They go "What"?? And you say that while they may get rid of you at any time, you are also free to leave at any time!!

The only problem is that I haven't worked in so long, I don't know what I'm retired from!!! But with all the practice I've had, I should have this retirement down pat!!