Monday, October 15, 2018

(shakes head)

"San Diego Gas & Electric became the second California utility to shut off power to some customers as a precautionary measure to prevent wildfires amid lashing winds throughout the state."


I guess Calistoga is out of power and Chefs are going to have a block party to cook their food before it spoils. Can you imagine?! All of these people losing business and work. It's unbelievable.


Just so everyone understands - this is why PG&E has to resort to such stupid antics.  People in California are mentally ill about the trees.

"Criticized for its role in several catastrophic California wildfires, state utility giant Pacific Gas & Electric is on a mission to clear trees near power lines that could topple and hit lines causing fires. But is the giant utility going too far? A group of Sacramentans is saying yes.

Some members of the Save the American River Association and the American River Parkway Coalition and others are fighting to stop PG&E from cutting down what they estimate could be 100 cottonwood and oak trees near a major electricity transmission line that runs through the parkway near Discovery Park.

That includes trees flanking the paved recreation trail, they say, based on blue dots the utility appears recently to have sprayed on trees. Saying they fear the utility company is overreacting, the group’s representatives say they want the utility company and the county, which oversees the parkway, to show evidence that trees need to be cut down rather than pruned."

Thank gawd Sears will finally stop malingering. It should have died at least a decade or more ago. And now we are stuck bailing out at least a decade or more of pensions.

Who even knew you got a pension at Sears?!

I'm not normally into cars that are a block long, but I kinda liked this one.

California is such a clown show.

Last night it started coming through my twitter feed that parts of Northern California were preemptively shutting off power because it was going to be windy. You know we just had all those fires. And instead of making their infrastructure able to withstand wind - they are just turning off the power. No foolies.

Last night I said self - lets see how that goes because I would be fighting mad. It's one thing to go through a crazy storm, but quite another to go through that storm without power. Plus, you lose everything in your refrigerator.

I didn't think they would actually do it, but apparently they have. There is no school today in Yuba counties. And here.  For real! I guess right now 42 THOUSAND people do not have power due to WIND.

Every time they try to push electric cars I just laugh because power is NEVER guaranteed in California. Usually you have a couple of blackouts a year. But now I guess we are just going back to the dark ages because these people are idiots.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Something always brings me back to you.

I have been aching for a beach day. And it occurred to me on Friday this might be our last warm weekend. So, we chose today to go. Tomorrow there is a car show in Santa Cruz and that would make it so I never got to the actual beach.

Mr S. also wanted to stop at a store in Santa Cruz for "bread stuff". It wasn't really the most ideal weekend for the beach because on one side of traffic hell - is the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival. So we didn't want to go anywhere near that. So we chose to stay in Santa Cruz.

I find their beaches "just okay." They are usually picked clean of anything interesting. They are sort of your "basic beach".  But it was a real feet in the sand beach day, and my brain feels a lot better.

The monarchs are also migrating and the beach had a grove of milkweed. It was too warm for them to cluster. The monarchs are just okay. You see them at home. But I guess it's sort of peaceful.

This owl was hanging out with the butterfly's.

Friday, October 12, 2018

It really is an incredible time to be alive.

Sometimes the internet can only take you so far.

Mr S. and I attended bread therapy last night. And like all therapy - this was a pay class in someones' house in San Jose. One other person came. Which was nice because Mr S. and the other person were at about the same speed.

You can tell how serious people are about bread making when they start talking about scales.

Now I've been calling bullshit on all of the gig economy stuff for a while. But, bread therapy was the nicest form of the gig economy.  Some guy just set up an Eventbright account and started teaching bread classes. And since we all have the internet and youtube, this allowed you to go at your own speed.

A lot of times you want to take a class on something but you are too advanced and don't want to take a bunch of classes to get to the more advanced stuff. You just want to become unstuck at the phase you are at. I honestly wish someone would do this for wood finishing.

Even the guy who taught the class spent some time in Italy and asked some of the bakers there if they could teach him just a few things. Most turned him down. But one place said he could intern for three years. THREE YEARS!

I honestly can't believe how much of a skill bread making is. But when you get a certain point down the rabbit hole, it really is a skill.

The guy teaching the class also kept bees, and had a bunch of hives. And I had questions about honey. So I got to get all of my honey questions out too. So..... it was pretty nice honestly.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Okay..... who's next?

Ford Prepares for Mass Layoffs After Losing $1 Billion to Trump's Trade Tariffs, Report Says.

"Ford, the No. 2 U.S. automaker by sales, is making aggressive job cuts as part of that reorganization, NBC News reported. While the company hasn’t said how many jobs will be lost, a report from Morgan Stanley estimates “a global headcount reduction of approximately 12 percent,” or 24,000 of Ford’s 202,000 workers worldwide."

What lying phonies. I see these guys at my car /smart city conferences all the time, and it's the saddest thing I've ever seen. All they talk about is bikes and scooters. It's really ridiculous. Because you know cities have these Ford branded bikes everywhere for ride share. I even posted about it a while back.   It's like they don't know they are a car company anymore because these cities are beating them into not making cars but other types of transportation.

I've  been  super perplexed because I see these bikes everywhere in cities and almost no one uses them. So I've had Ford on deathwatch for a while.

But at least Trump gave them cover.

The hood.

I was taking the above shot because the vineyard are going to change soon, and also got the bottom shot and I find it interesting some how. It like an old time movie.


Everyone has to have a SUV these days. Even Masi. I find them boring. They could even be MehSUV's.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Remember when "the kids" were plowing into SNAP and shouting - you old people just don't understand technology! OMG - good times.

I bet Evan wishes he would have structured that IPO a little differently now.
Night time financial twitter is going to be awesome. They've been on the verge of self immolation for weeks due to the divergence with the rest of the world.

That is how you know when stuff is getting dicey. Night time twitter. It's when the rest of twitter becomes silent and the finance guys are despondent.
I think it would be wise for China to remember that we gave them literally everything they have. I bet China is pretty shocked that people haven't started burning this place down by now. Even I am a little surprised by how calm people have been here.

Monday, October 08, 2018

How can this be possible?

One of the most frustrating things over the past decade or so has been watching companies shut off the path to advancement. They made it pretty much impossible to get your foot in the door and basically apprentice and work your way up. You make less, but not everyone has the time to go to college financially. This doesn't mean you shouldn't get a chance. Some of the brightest minds here have been high school drop outs. But those people would never be able to lie their way into getting into these companies these days due to the schooling requirements. Make no mistake you have to back up your lies with real knowledge, but you'd never be able to fib your way in now. And yes, everyone fibs a little bit to get jobs sometimes. They will test you anyway.

When a bunch of companies decided recently they were going to drop the college requirement, I felt it was like a breath of fresh air. It's the only way for people to get real hands on experience in a job climate of increasing complexity.

So this morning when I saw an article celebrating this new rule I went over to see which ones are signing on. Because I think this is a really good new development. And boy did it piss me off. Let me tell you why.

Other than Google, IBM  and Apple these are the companies who have signed on.

Whole Foods
Home Depot
And Lowes

How the fuck do you need a college degree to work at Chipotle? Please tell me this is shoddy reporting.  Seriously. Fully half of the companies listed should have never needed this requirement in the first place. It's complete insanity.

Saturday, October 06, 2018

Today, my husband had a bread break down, and now I'm taking him to couples bread therapy on Thursday. Seriously.

And I don't even believe in therapy as I had quite a bit of it when I was young. But yup. Bread therapy. It looks kinda nice. I guess this guy gives classes out of his house and he looks at your relationship - I mean starter - to see what it's problem is.

It's getting to the point where I don't want to know people inside thoughts.

People are way too willing to believe conspiracies when stupidity sums things up rather nicely.

For instance I was getting close to this girl. She recently had a cancer scare. So she proceeded to tell me that she thought the government had a cure for cancer, and they were just withholding it so they could make money off of people's cancer. And now I can't be friends with that girl.

We have definitely let crazy go on for way too long.

Friday, October 05, 2018

Looks bubbly to me.

I don't really get this. And you know I love me some self driving cars. This rig has to have at least 20+ grand in sensors. And why would you chose this type of car? Why not one of those Cube cars?
The other day I realized how bougie I'd become by the amount of different types of salt I own.

Two kinds of pink salt. Large and small grain. Yeah.

Black, regular table salt, large flake sea salt for steaks. I think when you reach around five different types of salt in your house - you've become super bougie. No one on earth needs this amount of salt. I think I've been working on the same table salt container my whole adult life. It takes forever to get rid of it.

Oh wait... One of our restaurants has started handing out wine soaked salt. So I have a bit of that.

Thursday, October 04, 2018

If something doesn't change soon - builders are going to be butt hurt. I just saw a newly constructed house be marked down by 200 grand.

And judging by the interest rate cycle - it's not looking like things are changing in the right direction.

Houses are sitting on the market for 5 months now.

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

Waymo Semi's.

I don't really get out to MountainView that often. Unless you are going to Google, there isn't much need. (and I wasn't) Google owns every building that Silicon Graphics and Sun Microsystems ever owned. Google owns almost the whole city.

But I was out there and decided to walk around because I worked for both of those companies in the day. I worked at Sun twice.

If there is any place that looks straight out of the intro the the TV show Silicon Valley - it's MountainView. Which was kinda delightful.

Waymo's seem to be a pretty basic sighting. I've been out there twice and both times I saw a Waymo self driving car. Then I heard this semi reving and I turned around and it was a Waymo Semi. It was manned,  but I got three shots off. But really if you just hang out it seems like it's pretty easy to see a Waymo product in MountainView.

Comma ai.

I got a chance to see George Hotz of commai speak where he was releasing a lower priced device. If you don't know who he is, he thinks self driving cars are bullshit. He also thinks all of this can be done without lidar, and can be done with a simple cell phone looking device with cameras. He also famously got shut down by NITSA. So he's a legend in Silicon Valley.

Personally I always love the rebels. The non group think people. But I'm not sure how to lean yet. He could be totally right. But I've read that his tests have been in geofenced areas. Which means very controlled.  He doesn't have enough logged miles for me to lean one way or the other. But I love anyone who tries to take down the big guys. I hope he wins.

In plain sight.

It's not all that fun to pick on Elon right now. He's just doing what Silicon Valley does. Fake it till you make it. But I did run across a new hiddey place right across from the Fremont Bart station. I was looking for something else. And from the front, you'd probably never notice this building was filled with "those cars".  (yes, I'm trying to not be picked up in a search engine) They wrap around the whole building. ALL sides.

As with his MO - there is a security guard/lookout in that truck above. So I'm not keen to walk around too much.

It is super perplexing to me why he is renting office space for this crap. Maybe he's getting a super good deal. But he might just be learning the hard way why dealerships exist.

Mr S. started out in that sector and it's always been common for cars to be shipped here and need parts to be added at the dealerships.

I gave you a backside shot so you can see how big the building is, and how much cover this site gives him. Not like that last one.

This is a pretty interesting vehicle.

It's a Dannar Moble Power Station. And it's sort of like a transformer. You should go to their site to see all the things that this thing can be configured into. You can take off the climate controlled cab and operate it via a controller. You can make it into a forklift. It's compatable with 250 different CAT, Bobcat and John Deere attachments. So you can stick a bucket on the front. Their site also has videos.

And it's a power station. Now how much would be pay? Sorry, I love infomercials and I got a little carried away. You can also apparently submerse it in water up until a certain point.

Behind these panels is where you plug in all your stuff. Plus it has USB ports.

Some of the back area has space for storage.

As you can see it really can be operated by a controller. This machine went 27 miles an hour, but they had a limiter on it at 23 miles per hour. And they were letting anyone who wanted to drive it around the parking lot. Now the is how you sell machines.

List price was 205,000. That comes with 3 BMW batteries.

This guy was getting instructions on the controller.

This is him walking it around the parking lot.

On the front and back there are cameras.

Monday, October 01, 2018

The map wars have begun.

As I was escaping Brown Town this morning (which is what I call my suburb this time of year) I ran into an UBER maps car. Which I found super curious. The self driving cars are usually newer cars, and they had a very minimal rig.

I couldn't see the side sensors as we were merging into a one lane road and I'm trying to not lose anymore bumpers.

I guess someone doesn't want to pay Google for their data anymore. But wow.... Google pretty much rules the world right? It's like Uber is reinventing the wheel.

I do actually have some interesting stuff for you - but I'm too tired to blog it tonight, and really I might not have the time to unpack it all until Wed.

Sunday, September 30, 2018

YUP. I'm quirky that way.

One of my favorite car trends is bare metal. I just love it to death. But I hate DeLoreans, and the color silver. I won't even recognize silver as a color. But bare metal is beautiful.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Ugly, Ugly, Ugly.

Pending home sales.

Also read - Bay Area home sales tank 10 percent in August — to the slowest pace in 7 years.

*Total home sales for the Bay Area fell nearly 10 percent compared with August 2017, according to CoreLogic. 

*Sales increased 1.8 percent compared with July, but the total volume was nearly 18 percent below the August average going back to 1988 and the lowest since August 2011. 

*Sales activity for the summer, June through August, was the slowest in seven years.

Emphasis mine.