May 23rd, 2014


Long Day

Up at 6, to be dressed when the remodelers arrived at 7. They started at 7:10, and were still at it at 5:30 when I checked the webcams from work. It was too early for me to go to the office, so I got gas at the station near a Starbucks, and settled in with my laptop and an iced mocha. Plenty of empty tables, but the line was long with people getting their to-go morning fix. I have never been one of those people.

Driving to work Fuzzy called, he said they would have to tear up all the bathroom tiles and replace them. I don't think he really had to, they could have been cut around the new shower and patched where the cabinet had been.

The webcam in the piano room died. It was right after they cut the power to the house - something they did not have to do - the bathroom was the only circuit they needed to mess with, but they shut them all off. I know because the router went down. It's not on that circuit. The diagram for the electric box is on the wall by the door they are using, I bet they didn't even notice it.

When I got home I was surprised at how much had not gotten done. They pulled up all the tiles in the bathroom, but it's a small amount of floor space. The shell of the shower was in there, and the wall had been moved as required.

The kitchen sink was installed, but the faucet is crap. I'll call him in the morning and yell at him. I asked for separate hot and cold taps, and to keep the spray attachment. Instead he gave me a single mechanism which pulls out for volume and swings up and down for hot and cold. And the spray is build into the head of the faucet, and doesn't retract smoothly. Very pretty piece of crap.

Probably not installed correctly. The worker spent 15 minutes trying to figure out the pull-out mechanism.

Nice sink, though.

No word from Fuzzy, so I'll assume they will be here at 7 tomorrow too. :-(

Work was boring, more puzzling over test cases which have become obsolete. Did have a 1-on-1 after lunch at the Pho place. Worst chow fun ever.

First thing after I looked at the damage at home, I pulled out the spare webcam, and started to set it up, but it refused to connect to wi-fi. Had to leave it and go to YOTB rehearsals. I was 5 minutes late, somehow wedged into the only parking space left (I almost went back home because no way was I hauling my baritone and stand two blocks from the nearest street parking. I have to do that on Sunday for the concert).

The conductor had us go through each of the pieces we are playing at the concert, but only worked on the trouble spots of most of them, and skilled a couple that we know well and even the new people won't have trouble sight reading. Actually, they have had a month worth of rehearsals before May, while I was in Little Shop. I glued my teeth in this morning, and used the right mouthpiece, so the high notes didn't get to me as much as last week.

Plans for tomorrow:
Up way too early
Yell at Fuzzy
Go to work early so I can leave early
Maybe see the show at SCP. It's a comedy, and a friend is in it.

Thailand's "Coup"

It's nothing to panic about, in fact just the opposite. For many months two groups of protesters have been at each other's throats, with massive rallies and marches and each had a permanent camp-out in Bangkok. Military grade weapons (grenade launchers, machine guns) have been smuggled in to fanatics on both sides, innocent bystanders have been killed.

The courts convicted the PM of corruption, and kicker her and half her cabinet out. In an unrelated action she had previously dissolved parliament and made herself "caretaker" PM pending elections. The elections were sure to re-elect her, but protesters blocked enough polling places that the courts ruled the election invalid and the election commission set a date in late July to try again. And then decided that was too soon.

The head of the army stayed neutral through all this, but he finally ran out of patience. He declared martial law, had the army shut down the protest sites and send everyone home, took over all the TV stations and severely restricted the newspapers. Internet is still mostly open, but seems to me to have been slowed down dramatically.

He ordered both protest sides and the acting government leaders to come to a military base to hold talks and try to resolve the crisis. After two days, there was no headway so he had them all taken to another barracks, fired them all, and declared himself acting PM until someone neutral could be identified.

There is also a 10 pm curfew, 9 pm for massage parlors.

My impression is he wants to be in charge of the government about as much as General Sherman (I will not accept if nominated, and will not serve if elected) did. The main idea behind this is to stop the senseless killings, and the big hit the economy is taking with all those people not working, blocking traffic and getting in the way of businesses. And perhaps he hopes to put an end to the massive greed and corruption in parliament and establish free and fair elections.

Thailand has a cycle which dates back to  the early 70s of the military taking over, holding elections, seeing democracy fail, and taking over again. When I was there in 1976, it was a very bloody coup, thousands of citizens were killed. The last two have been bloodless.

Friends in Thailand tell me they are fine, especially the foreigners. This coup is all about locals misbehaving, visitors aren't being hassled except for the curfews.