Bullets In The Gun

They used to call me lightening
I was always quick to strike
had everything I own in the saddles on my back
I had a reputation for never stayin’ very long
just like a wild and restless drifter
like a cowboy in a song

I met a dark haired beauty
where they laid the whiskey down
in southern Arizona
in a little border town
She had to dance for money
in that dusty old saloon
I dropped a dollar in the jukebox
played that girl a tune, yea

Never see it comin’ 
It just hits you by surprise
It’s that cold place in your soul
and that fire in her eyes
That makes you come together
like wild horses when they run
now the cards are on the table
and the bullets in the gun, yea

She was sittin’ on my lap
we still had shots to kill
when a man pulled up who owned the bar
in a cadillac deville
grabbed her by her raven hair
and threw her in the floor
said no free rides for the cowboys
that ain’t what I pay you for, no

She jumped up and grabbed my pistol 
stuck it in the fat man’s back
said open up the safe
and put your money in the sack
tied his hands behind him
and put a blindfold on his eyes
if you’re dumb enough to chase us, man
you’re dumb enough to die

Never see it comin’
it just hits you by surprise
it’s that cold place in your soul
that fire in her eyes
that makes you come together
like wild horses when they run
now he cards are on the table
and the bullets in the gun

We rode across the border
down into mexico
when yo’re runnin’ from the law
ain’t that where everybody goes?
we came to a town
with a name I couldn’t spell
she gave me what I came for
in that Mexican motel

I woke up to sirens
and the sound of runnin’ feet
There were 50 Federales
locked and loaded in the street
she grabbed my 44
I grabbed the money in the sack
she kissed me for the last time
and we headed out the back

Every gun was on us
and every heartbeat poundin’
there’s only one thing left to do
when they got you all surrounded
she fired that old pistol
but we didn’t stand a prayer 
money hit the gravel
bullets filled the air, yea

Never see it comin’ 
it just hits you by surprise
it’s that cold place in your soul
and that fire in her eyes
that makes you come together
like wild horses when they run
now the cards are on my table
and bullets in the gun

bullets in the gun
bullets in the gun
bullets in the gun

Bullets In The Gun—Toby Keith

Missing an old run down Ford

Appropriately Ford Tempo’s have been haunting my dreams all morning. Yesterday ma made the final decision to scrap Rosie, which brought the price of the cars value by weight. Before we left, I took one more picture:

From Rosie & Noëlle

So that’s officially the end of an extremely old friend. The only good thing I can say, they will likely keep her around for a parts draw until they need to liquidate some cars or run out of usable parts.

Nothing like family to rack up bills for you.

O.K. so while we were at the car dealer, we had to get all the car insurance crap sorted out while finalizing things. Bad news is obviously, a slightly higher cost but good news is full coverage.

Getting pissed with the insurance company e-mailing her about the changes, she’s gone ahead and made changes to that. So now I have to contact the dealer and get that updated with the policy changes, and she has effectively increased the projected insurance bill in the process.

As far as I’m concerned, she just forfeited an equivalent share of her share of my regular pay cheque, or owes me monthly!

Something about sorting through receipts made me vaguely think that I need a filing cabinet and I should likely print out my digital receipts where applicable. Then I remembered I hate paper, and I mean I really hate paper. That is when it hit me.

I don’t need no freaking file cabinet, I can just store files in a secure dropbox and be done with it. Plus it’s possible to effectively “Scan” papers off my phone by using the camera and uploading them. Victory is mine on the war against wasting valuable trees  :-).

Now the real question is with the sorry state of our traditionally decrepit power grid, what does more damage to the earth lol—more paper or more PC usage.

Rosie & Noëlle

Well, it’s taken a while but I’ve finally gotten around to getting the pictures off my phone, nuts almost wrote car… that’s a headache for you. Yesterday on the way home and after getting both cars here, I took a few pictures of each.

An awfully long time ago, my grandmother dragged us across the Ford dealer and came home with a used 1993 Tempo GL, same light blue that she always got. Don’t know how long it took but it was dark by the time we left, felt like all day. I’m sure we walked the property at least twice!!!




Maybe the Tempo isn’t an important model to many people but for me, it’s a slice of history. My memory of that car goes back as far as the guy at ford explaining how the radio worked during the test drive. It’s the same car that my grandmother put a curse on after the alzheimer’s took her off the road. Same car that took us all to disney world, and again left me with numb legs the first time we came to Newnan. It’s the car my brother learned to drive in the parking lot, by giving the seat belts a real run for their money. IIRC, it was a Sports Authority parking lot. Like wise, it’s the the first car I was in an accident with when ma was turning right at the intersection and someone ran a red light and creamed us on the way to pick up my brother from work. I can still remember countless times in that car. On the same coin, it is also the car that I learned to drive in. Yeah, a little HSC straight four engine with a three speed automatic, that can peel out like a flash yet still go smooth at a low crawl and rattle all the way.



I learned how that car responds, what she is capable of, where the rattles come from, and how to manoeuvre it to her the edge of her envelope. To compensate for all the damage, I’ve even had to learn how to drive with minimal help beyond wheels. To starve off Murphy, I usually give myself margins measured in feet when driving but know that car enough to only need inches. What can I say, we’ve known each other a long time, even closer since I got to start driving. At some point, my mother had nick named the car “Rosie” after Katharine Hepburn’s role of “Rose Sayer” in the African Queen. It’s kind of stuck, and well, beats referring to it as “Car” :P. So, I refer to this car as Rosie whenever `the family ford` or her make/model isn’t the only appropriate form of address. Whenever I hear Somewhere With You on the radio, I’m gonna be thinking of Rosie.

My family never really took much care of that car, so it’s always been a mess, fluids almost never checked beyond anti-freeze (my mother is paranoid about that), oil changes more like 2 or 3 times in 17 years, tyres when they’re flat, etc. Most things taken into the car, have stayed there for /years/ and it’s been used like a trash can for as long as I can remember. I’ve never volunteered to clean out the car, because I know I’m the only asshole who would keep it clean. After taking pictures of the interior, I threw some of the trash out when I was unloading Rosie.



My mother’s never given a crap about keeping the car clean. You’ve always had to move something before sitting in my brothers car, and I don’t think most people seem to care. Well in my case, if it comes in with you, it better go out with you, or ya gettin’ out and walkin’ the rest of the way!
The 2007 Ford Taurus SE that I got yesterday, seems to have gotten the nick name Noëlle. Something that ma suggested, it being Christmas time and all. Where as Rosie and I, could probably described as a crazy pair, I would say that Noëlle is a more sensible car at heart. Maybe we’ll rub off on each other lol. 
Me being me, of course, I’m opting for the spelling Noëlle rather than the more common (here) form of “Noel” as in the song. That is of course for linguistic reasons.
While getting everything sorted yesterday, I went about checking the things I had to forgo at the car dealer, and top off the fluids. Didn’t need much of anything really and the tyres are basically new… kind of refreshing from running on next to nothing lol. Noëlle is clean on the inside and I intend for things to remain that way. While I doubt it will stay as it is, right now the engine is so clean you could practically eat off it, but that might offend the car :-/.
So far I’ve put >= 200 miles on it between the drive home, a trip to Griffen, and us going up to Carrollton for dinner last night. Having a full set of mirrors, working turn signals, and gasp, high beams that actually work, is shockingly different.
The real question I reckon, is whether or not it survives until 2024, +/- me, hehehehehehe.

Every drivers right of passage…

While not /quite/ as time consuming as my grandmother dragging us across F.O.R.D. motors cica 17 years ago, it seems almost the entire day has gone to procuring a car. Didn’t think there would be any savings on time >_>.

Went down to a dealer called Navigator up in Marietta this afternoon, nice little drive actually. Spent the morning at Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Since I wasn’t able to get a ride up there, and well, being a stubborn, gundanium headed person, I’m not gonna skip out on an appointment (and a good deal) that easily, no matter how much my mother complains. I didn’t push the old car into work tomorrow because I was worried it would damage the vitals; if the mechanic is giving it a death sentance however, well I know how far she can go. We’re both tough old, crazy birds in that way. I love that car.

To make my mother ‘happy’, I got a rental for the day instead of tempting fate. Can’t say that the Kia Spectra is particularly inspiring as a car but it’ll do the job fine when you need one. Took long enough between my mother and Enterprise, that we were running late—so for a change I drove like a proverbal bat out of hell.Yeah, just like one of my friends likely does… I’m thinking of you Escrt!!! Usually I go around the speed limit and let people going much faster than that pass me at will. But hey, if people are making me almost an hour late and everyone else on the express way is doing 80+, I’m riding with traffic when safe to to do so.

Must admit, I’m used to driving a car that only has a passenger side view mirror: so having a driver side view and rear view mirror, is almost like having a HUD :-/. Coming home,  it felt alien to use the mirrors, instead of having to drive straight and look over my shoulder whenever changing lanes to the left. I guess it’s fitting, as someone whose usually the train harder, fight easier type, that I’ve had to deal with a car that has next to null driver aids (unless you count power steering and good breaks, hehe).

Financing a used car is a lot of paper work, I probably signed and or initialled my name a good 40 times today. Overall the interest rates I’m getting are so miserable that after everything is said and done, it’s like paying for a new car instead of a used car, but I’m fine with that. If I had the cash laying around un-needed, I would just buy the car outright like my grandmother, instead of paying double that when everything is said and done.

My main concern was the drive away costs, because I’d like enough of my pay left over to drive into work after the holidays ^_^. One reason I tried the dealer I did, their way of doing the down payment is you pay about the normal price but it’s split into 3 chunks instead of an initial lump sum. Basically 50% of the down payment followed by a pair of cheques for 25% in place of the regular payments. The regular payments ain’t so bad either, so it’s just the interest rate is very high, thus making the cost more a lot more than the cars resale value. I’m fine with that. I just want a good car, not extra wealth.

In the end I got a white 2007 Ford Taurus SE. Breaks ain’t as good as Rosy’s, nor does it quite have the pick up of that old ’93 Tempo GL, but it is more to my taste than the other cars I’ve taken on a test drive. The best of which, was rather like my brothers car, and I don’t really like his car lol. The Taurus has a lower fuel efficiency ratings than I would like, but by contrast it’s a Vulcan V6 rather than an old HSC straight-4. It’s also an American car, which means it’ll stay put together with duct tape and chewing gum, which is kind of cool.

Except for the fluid levels, I inspected it as thoroughly as I could without having a tool kit on me; and I’ll check the fluid levels tomorrow when I get a chance. I liked that the tyres are in great shape (I’m used to having steel showing). Ironically a lot of things have changed: shifter is on the steering column (old style) rather than on the floor like every car I have ever seen. The parking brake is even a foot pedal/pull release instead of the lever type I’ve always been exposed to. For my mother, it’s reminiscent of 1960s fords lol. Engine and car body is what I really focused on with the Taurus – I can seem direct similarities to the Tempo’s engine, especially the alternator and belt design, but it is a rather different beast. I’ve spent enough time staring down Rosy’s engine, that it ain’t hard to figure out what is what, in as much as I know what I’m looking at that is. I’m a programmer after all, not a mechanic.

Much to my distaste, this Taurus also has the same “Power everything” mentality as my mothers Tempo. Power locks, power windows. I remember when those were optional “Luxaries” on cars… yeah. If you’ve got kids or something, I would recommend it but other wise I view power windows/locks as just another moving part that can break down. Modern key less entry systems are kind of nice though. To the interior, the only thing I really car about is that the radio works, so I can stop using my phone and ear buds :-).

Me being me, of course looking at the trunk space, all I could think of is “Wow, you could fit three bodies in this thing”. Yeah, lol. Seems that newer cars really go for a snub noise, big engine, and large ass compared to the things I grew up with; which were rather more like cardboard boxes on wheels.

Either way, I am happy. Got a car, it’s an improvement, and I ain’t totally broke yet. While I really don’t care much for FORD in general, I’ll admit, I would rather have a car that rattles with a good engine than have a car with a shitty engine and no rattles. Even if this Taurus rides pretty dang silent right now, I have never known a ford that didn’t start to rattle eventually. It’s not a sign of trouble, it’s a sign of FORD engineering lol.

Tomorrow if things don’t totally Murphify, I’ll take some pictures of both cars. Need to go pick up the old Tempo from the parking yard at Enterprise, so ma will be driving my Taurus and I’ll coax the old girl home. Now as long as my mother doesn’t crack up my car and Rosy doesn’t halt and catch fire, we ought to be O.K.

I love that damn old car…

I hate missing a day’s work

Today started off like a normal day, except for  the cars recent transmission problems getting, eh, worse. So instead of a nice Monday at work, I end up missing work and taking it into the the mechanics. Whose advise is run it til it dies. Of course that gets my mom banannas.

So I’ve spent time looking at used cars. There goes a nice 50% of incom, that would other wise be getting saved  :-/. The ironic thing? Years and years ago, this is the kind of time frame I thought I might end up having to get a car… lol.

*yawn* it’s a lazy wazy afternoon, and I feel somewhere between taking a siesta and getting into some code, before I go back to work tomorrow lol.

Spent some time screwing with my phone, GPS, updated maps, blah, blah. Personally I think that a touch screen is better than a mouse, worse than a keyboard; although interestingly swype seems to be handy with a terminal emulator! Maybe on a much larger display, an on screen keyboard might cut it for general typing needs. Also put in a bit of time seeing what level of integration I can get between Android and my `usual` work flow. So/so.

What I really would like? Is a CRUD interface to ‘everything’, that I could use from my unix shell, a gui, or perhaps, even my phone. Preferably I would like something Mail like in terms of interface. Something that could roll news feeds, e-mail, task management, calendaring, facebook, etc all into one thing. Like a big data funnel. On my weekends off, I’ve been grokking around for libraries that would help interface with the services I use, like my calendar: something increasingly important ;).

On the other side is the issue, what language is ideal to the mixture, and how many weekends would it take to get something, ‘useful’ ? Honestly, I like dynamic languages for the features. JavaScript and Lisp will never be pretty to look at but they really rock. By contrast more static languages are often easier to  enforce ahead of time type checking but lack sexy features. I rather prefer it when the compiler can tell me, “Oops” before I execute a program, but I’d rather not have to code my way around the languages artificial limits either. Hmm, can’t have everything I guess.

So, to be perfectly honest, I have no idea what I’m doing for the next few hours lol.

Ahh, it feels good to be able to sit with my laptop and update my journal for a bit! That’s kind of a down side to such a long drive to work, I usually get home to late to focus on blogging anything. Hopefully that will change in the near future, courtesy of leaving Newnan.

Today, I slept in as it were: rolled out of bed circa 0900, where as for work I’ve been setting my alarm for 0600. Most of my time has been spent on the rather tedious subject of logistics and budgeting. It won’t be long until I know how much the regular pay cycle is going to be, but a little simple math and margining gives me a suitable ball park for plotting. The other thing that I’ve been looking at, is apartments closer to work. How I run the numbers, I also leave myself a comfortable margin!!!

Driving to work every day is around 140 miles per day across two highways and two interstates. Moving could reduce that closer to a 20-25 mile drive, which means a hell of a lot of less money spent on gas. Like 2 gal/day instead of 6 gal/day. Being able to eliminate the hike down the I-85 alone, is a net savings to be honest. Taking the Atlanta bypass, the speed limit is only 55, same as on a normal highway outside of school zones. Where as on the I-85, the speed limit is 70 at this end and drops to 65 within city limits. In actuality, people tend to go well over the speed limit out here lol. This old ford burns through gas once you start going past ~45mph; and over 60 it sucks gas like, well I won’t use that analogy here but those who know me well can guess what I would think <_<.

Geographically, if I could find something near the areas that I have outlined, it’s much less of a commute. But e.g. getting to other things, like the airsoft field or church would become a good long drive. I’d rather commute weekends than weekdays, when you combine the time and money saved with moving closer to work. When they interviewed me, they didn’t demand I/we move, they only asked if I would be willing to. Really, I don’t mind the commute, but it would be nice to still have free time left in the day when I get off work, that isn’t spent driving home lol.

As things work now, my mother is seeing 1/3 of my net income after tithing. That’s what she got out of my first weeks pay, and what she’ll get out of this pay cycle as well. Moving would rearrange that equation. Namely that money would then represent a decent months rent, and the savings out of the petrol budget could help with bills or fill in extra slack if the rents a little higher. I think it would be fair enough to my mother, that if instead of giving her a percentage of my pay cheque, I alleviated her biggest monthly bill, it would be a fair trade. She would also worry less if it’s a short drive to work, and I would be more at ease knowing my mother is taken care of, than if I was out on my own and she was at the other end of the metro area! I would also miss the dogs if I moved out :'(, and I really can’t count on my brother to lift a finger lol. Friends have been telling me for many years he should get off his arse, but I know both that ma is the only mother I’ve got, and I’m the only stooge that’s going to look after her. Maybe I’m weird, but I don’t throw people out just because I don’t “Need” them, especially family.

So in theory, between the pay from my new job and her staple income, it’s possible to pay rent, pay (and trim) bills, and still have part of my regular pay to save away in the bank (or a mayonnaise jar). That’s something I couldn’t do without my mother: have enough left to save after rent, bills, and a car. I know what it’s like to live with things tight, heck, I’m not a penny pinching S.O.B. in a family of spenders for nothing! I want to stuff away part of my income, so there’s something there for a rainy day. I’m not willing to blow every cent I make before the inks dry lol.

Yeah, I’m kind of the family freak… the one who saves money :-/.

Right now, my plan is to start calling some of the places I’ve tracked down and inquiring about details. Principally I need to know if their are any suitable units available, and how the animals would impact things. To be acceptable to me, any place of residence has to accept the dogs and the bird. Simple. Like wise a decent internet connection is required.

Hmm, maybe I can get my mother to finally throw crap out that we ain’t used in over ten years…… O.K that is probably to much to hope for, LOL!