Game on, Covid 19, Game On

It was definitely not unexpected but the Corona Virus has officially landed on the central coast of California and the current push is to flatten the infection curve by closing schools and more or less encouraging people to shelter in place.

Because of my work in the school system and with children, I was well aware that there would be something big happening here. It felt like things developed from minute to minute for a long time until a plan appears to have been developed.

As of late Sunday morning, I will not be going in to work until after spring break which ends three weeks from now. My co-workers are considered essential and will be working until everything is completely shut down and we have to retreat to our burrows until spring.

In other news, my main Twitter account was somewhat randomly but not altogether unexpectedly suspended. I have submitted an appeal but am putting in lots of effort in building up my back up account into something viable as I do not expect much from the appeal if I'm being honest (which I am and I always wonder when other people say that if it means they're usually not being honest?).

Anyway, the virus is making people a little crazy. Well, maybe a little is an understatement. Stores are getting cleaned out faster than they can get restocked. People are calling around looking for where the next truckload of toilet paper is going to be delivered. Hand sanitizer is now more valuable than gold, almost.

But that does not mean you should try to be this asshole attempting to make a big profit off the pandemic (NYTimes link, much dinkery on that side, sorry). But look at his sad face and all his sanitizer. Not really feeling much sympathy for him.

I am as bummed about the loss of ability to teach and do 3d printing with students at my school as anything else. I mean, I'm not complaining about having several weeks off of work. Especially if the weather cooperates and we get some nice spring swell and good sun. I've been teaching and mostly introducing 3d printing to a bunch of 6th graders. Some have been content to grab and print files that others have designed and some are getting into their own designs.

We've been using Tinkercad to do our designs in because it is pretty easy to use and let me set up a bunch of classes to manage projects a little better. I am learning on the go here as well so it has been fun. I've begun making my own designs. By far my most ambitious is this 3 room stacked mini house built into a riser to stack Ikea Lack tables with (used for making 3d printer enclosures).

This is my latest surfing video with swanky edits and b-roll. And this is about it for this blog update, it is a crazy time right now and will probably get crazier before it gets saner. Oh and it looks like the Dems are going to nominate increasingly demented Joe Biden to run against Trump, I'm sure that'll go well.


The Far Side of the Half Century Mark

Seabright to Main Beach Pano off the Point.

I just had a big birthday and it was one of those momentous ones with big numbers. I'm no longer in my 40's and am, officially, an older man.

So I thought it would be a good idea to try and capture some of my thoughts on turning 50.

First off, I strongly feel like people shouldn't EVER have to use a sick day to not work on their birthday and it should be a paid holiday for everyone. If it occurs on a weekend then an extra day of pay. I think it is silly that I have to pretend to be sick but what the fuck ever because I can't focus on work.

First off, the goodies.
I wasn't overly indulgent for my birthday but I have upgraded and replaced a few things that needed to get replaced. My first 3d printer, a Monoprice Select Mini, has now been replaced with a Creality Ender 3 that I got a great deal on and have had to rebuild and fix up. As of yesterday (now a couple of weeks ago), it is now running well and printing very well! It isn't quite perfect yet but the quality of prints I'm now pulling off it are light years ahead of where they were last week.

Second was to use some savings and finally bite the bullet and buy a Nintendo Switch. My kids have been dying for one for ages and I got a good deal on a bundle with a second set of controllers AND it came with Super Smash Brothers AND, extra bonus, a 128 gig micro sd card that the seller wasn't aware of (a pawn shop selling stock on Ebay).

The third was an impulse purchase as the price had dropped sharply from $60+ to under $40 and is a larger instant tent that'll sleep the three of us pretty comfortably. I'm also in the process of converting the beach tent into a pop up shelter with an adjustable shade area.

I took the day off, slept in, puttered around, got the mail when it was delivered and put in some work on the printer to get the new bed leveled and try it out. The short of it is I have no idea why Creality ships with the bed they do, they'd have MUCH happier customers if they shipped with a rigid plate or glass. The frustration of trying to get the printer working on that shit bed was dumb. I did have to work through a good number of issues with the printer and haven't gotten them all sorted out just yet but most of them are done and the printer is currently engaged in a 6 - 7 hour print job at home while I am at work right now!

I am planning on getting some carbon fiber reinforced PLA or filament for this printer and seeing about printing out some custom fins for my surfboard. I've also got an idea for a tow behind camera rig to get some underwater video footage.

The school year is well under way now. I have a freshman in high school now and I'm still wrapping my head around it. I'm also still wrapping my head around 5 years of dealing with the nightmare that is Aptos High School's access by road. Anyone who's been there knows exactyly what I'm talking about, it is one of the most ridiculously shittily designed schools ever. One road in and out and around 1500 students AND on a major commute route means there are, literally, hundreds of idling cars stuck waiting to drop off kids every single morning. It is an environment disaster happening every single morning and it makes me really annoyed.


I Made An Art

I took some clips from quadcopter footage I shot, put them in a pleasing order, tossed in a very cool effect and then added some good music and I kind of like how this came out. Mostly.


Thursday Spring Has Sprung SUP Surf!

After what has seemed like an endless cold, wet winter, spring appears to have made an appearance and this week has been increasingly nice out! I was able to get out for a little SUP surf after work yesterday and had a good time but wowee am I out of surf shape! Here's hoping we get lots of beach time in this weekend!


Some Random Thoughts and Links

The college entrance cheating scandal is going to get worse before people move on to the next scandal. It isn't news that rich people abuse their positions, money and connections, it isn't news that mothers are crazy about being able to brag about which college their kid goes to, but it is kind of news that they are so brazen about simply bullying their way through life with their wallets.

And it is rather delicious to see Felicity Huffman's rah rah self-empowerment posts coming back to be shoved in her fraud face. Or Lori Laughlin's kid admitting she didn't care which college she went to. The lion's share of the blame rests on the mom's shoulders. I'm sure the dads are culpable too, same for the kids but, imo, the driving force behind the college entrance scandal is so that the soccer moms can brag to the other ones about their super duper amazing kids who really aren't all that super duper amazing (or at least not in the way that allows their vain moms to brag about).

Cutting through the sensationalist aspects of it, the cheaters are shallow creatures needing to accumulate brags to fend off their own insecurities.

Then there's this awful story about an off-duty cop driving way too fast and crashing his car into a car full of people and ending up killing a 1 year old child. Then it gets weird because the child's mother, who wasn't driving the car that got hit, was charged with negligent homicide for not tightening the child's car seat straps enough... Yeah.

In lighter news, my budding artist son and I are collaborating on a design project to make a cool 3d printable widget in Tinkercad. I am also more than a little addicted to these primitive build videos.