Jan 26 2013

Rusty Birthday Present

Last night I stopped by to see Rusty who lives 3 house down from me for his surprise birthday party. Just a bunch of locals all drinking beer having fun with a few of the band members in attendance.


Much to my surprise, my mole gag gift to Rust was hilarious. At first no one could figure out exactly what it was. Is it real? A toy? Stuffed? Battery operated? It came nicely wrapped in an sealed Amazon box complete with bubble wrap to protect the goods.

Rusty figured it out really quickly (I think he was still mostly sober at the time) and handed the bag to Bubba who wanted to check the little guy and get a closer look at the prize. By then everyone at the party was watching and laughing.


At first Bubba couldn’t quite figure out what he was handed (I think he was less sober than the rest). Out it came from the bag for a closer examination and then he put it in his hand and started stroking it… “Pet your mole” everyone started yelling. He responded “I want to see if would start moving (batteries operated)”.


Finally after a few minutes of poking and prodding, he sniffed the mole to see if it was real. I thought I was going to die laughing. Everyone was cracking up. You could just see singular moment the light of awareness came to him and off he ran to the bathroom to wash his hands after which the mole was re-bagged and was passed around for all to enjoy.

Guitar and dobro music…


Bubba was a great sport and we all laugh and talked about it for the rest of the evening. Rusty loved it. I was pleased.

Who would have thought a dead mole gift for Rusty’s 47th birthday would be the hit of the party. This surprise birthday party had a special surprise that he will certainly remember and laugh about for years.


You never know what will bring humor to people. Go figure….


As I was leaving I asked Bubba’s daughter (Bubbet I think), what happened to the mole. She told me here and her dad (Bubba) were going to “take it home to feed it to their snake”.

Recycling with a purpose… I like that!

Later I was told the snake turned up is nose (snout maybe) at the offering. Let the bio-degradation begin.

Jan 26 2013

The Great Hunter

For years I have dealt with moles in my yard. I hate those little guys. Sneaking around underground, tearing up my yard. I am very tolerant and have a deep respect for wild life, but this is a case of NIMBY (not in MY back yard you little rodent)!

For years I have tried various poisons and other methods to get rid of them and bought a trap a few years ago, but these solutions just didn’t seem to work well or were NOT very satisfying.

Then I finally went on YouTube and found a video on how to PROPERLY set a mole trap that I already had. Hell I was doing it all wrong. Then I did a bit more “digging” around to get up to speed on the latest mole elimination technology.

You can Blowing up mole trails using propane/oxygen mix ($1400 kit) or using your car/lawn mower exhaust to kill them with carbon monoxide but I think trapping is the best solution and is a hell of a lot of fun. Makes me feel like a trapper of ole trying to earn a living harvesting mole skins for pharmaceutical conglomerate’s blister control products.

After only two days the properly setting the trap bagged my first mole in this Victor trap (about $15 on amazon)


I did more mole research on the internet after my first success. Know thy enemy! You know moles live mainly on worms (not grubs) and can tunnel up to 60 feet a DAY. They are very territorial, live a solitary life (like me) and are active year around. I bought two more different style traps (a snare and another pincer type) to test which kind I like the best. This trap is about $30 on Amazon. I don’t like it as much as the Victor type trap, as I don’t think the trigger is as sensitive to movement in the tunnel as the Victor trap, but it did the job today!


Today I bagged my third one!



This guy’s demise added another notch to my trophy wall. I even keep remnants of rotten wood remnants from house remodeling/repair projects on my wall. Ah, memories.


So far I have trapped 13 raccoons, 2 cats (one of which was my own cat), 3 possums (all live releases) and now I can add 3 moles (not so alive release)….


It is SOOOOOO satisfying to trap those little guys. Fun too. Every morning I grab my fresh cup of java, I check my trap line on the way to pick up the papers and look for where they were running at night all with the hope of bagging my next little critter. I must truly have a sad life if trapping moles in the morning gets my blood going.

Too bad I can’t eat them. Mole barbecue would make my life complete.

Post script: I was going to let this morning’s trophy bio degrade in the yard, but decided to recycle him.


I hope Rusty enjoys his special birthday present!

Jan 25 2013

AeroLED arrival

Today I received my AeroLED’s for the EZ. They are fantastic products and when I powered them up the light output nearly blinded me! I can’t wait to install them on the plane


The hardest part of the install is planning the wiring diagram. I probably spent 12 hrs trying to figure out an acceptable integration of the wires into my plane systems without major rework. What a chore!


After going through 30-40 designs (thank God I love to do Sudoku puzzles), I came up with a simple design with only requires replacement of 2 switches and 2 diodes.


Now I am set! I’ll probably start the install on Monday since the temperatures here will be in the 70’s.

Jan 23 2013

My house is on fire!

As I lit my fireplace tonight, before a buddy came over for dinner, I started reflecting how strange it is, I am heating my house with my house. I am burning my house up, a bit at a time!

wpid-IMG_4073-2013-01-23-18-51.jpg Check the recycling bin next to the fireplace.

Nick’s house recycling.

As I do projects most around the house (raising the roof, back deck replacement, front porch, etc) anything which involves wood, I just throw the old wood scraps on to my utility trailer. In the winter, I chop the fuel up with the cordless circular saw and burn it.


Although I am adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere by burning the wood, studies have shown it is no more than what occurs by natural biodegradation. Sadly, my wood will not be layered, compressed for ions, and converted in to crude oil for someone else’s pleasure of consumption. Another possibly is it be franked for its natural gas by pumping unknown crap into the rock strata and polluting the environment some millenia in the future. Fracken for gas what a terrible idea for the environment.

NO, I will be a consumer of carbon and use the stored carbon NOW. If there is pollution to be had at some point in time, I want to the one who benefits!

What is funny for me is that EACH piece of wood I touch evokes a memory and tells a story! I flash back to where and when I ripped it off the house, reflect and give honor to this moment in time in which THIS scrap of wood delivers to me the last bit of utility and pleasure it has to offer.

A much nobler purpose then being eaten by microbes…..


This little jewel is from my the side soffit brick detail near the guest bedroom. Took it off when Tony and I were re-roofing the house last winter.


This piece from the front porch rafter. I added new rafters when I repitched the roof. Spent a some time using Autocad to design the porch soffits which saved me LOTS of time trying to figure it out.


This guy is some of the vertical siding on the front porch.

And finally, these very memorable and special boards…. the last of their kind….


These boards which removed during a back porch upgrade. A lot of holes drilled in them to be repurposed as worm composting box ventilation boards. Eventually, after an upgrading the worm box the boards were relegated to the trailer for winter. Now as the last two that exist were being recycled. It was delightful to watch the smoke, flame and light start to dance out of all the holes as this wood begins the ultimate recycling.

In its place another memory has been born….

Red Worm composting. Remembering the Worm Poop Guys selling Worm Tea and Worm Casting at the downtown Charleston Farmers market. Hum, thats, another crazy story for another point in time….