The Useful Duck!

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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Turning the baseball field green again

I am getting used to my new position at work.
I really miss my old area because it was beautiful. There were happy pretty college girls who said hi to me every day, and there were very few time-sensitive tasks, there were NO coaches involved, students sometimes bought me coffee, the lady at Security gave me brownies and pumpkin bread, and I had my own area where I could attempt to climb hills with my Gator.
Now that I am the athletics groundskeeper the only real benefit is that I have the greenhouse where I can hide when it rains.
I find it very difficult to hide my farmer abilities when using them will make my job easier.
My current task is to try and get the baseball field green.
I have an issue figuring fertilizer rates on small acreages and using lbs per 1000 sqft. I'm not so good with the mathematics and when the results are meaningless to me I find I have to covert to lbs per acre to make sure I divided the correct direction.
Last week I applied Ironman to the baseball field as it was looking a touch on the yellow side.
Ironman is a slow release 12-0-8 fertilizer with 14% iron.
The Nitrogen percentage is not the biggest concern as the Iron is what greens the field. It also 0 percent Phosphate which is what you want when you have a severe problem with POA/Annual Bluegrass, The reason the field is so yellow is in fact the Poa problem. Which I will try to solve using a combination of a growth regulator and a wilber-ellis product called PoaConstrictor. To do this I need to get my commercial applicator's license. I'm not thrilled.
Here is the problem that plagues me.
The fertilizer spreader combined with my driving and lack of concentration is less than accurate. A difference of one 50lb bag on 30,000 soft is a visible difference. A 50lb difference on 30 acres is nothing. So...I applied 6lbs per 1000 soft on the baseball field and 10lbs per 1000 soft on the softball field. Basically because I put an extra bag in the fertilizer spreader and I didn't want to drive back to the baseball field to spread it out.
The math to put it into perspective for farmers like me.
6lbs x 43 = 258lbs per acre vs 10lbs x 43 = 430lbs per acre. The softball field is a beautiful shade of dark green...
Then there is the figuring of the fertilizer rates. Mainly total lbs applied vs total lbs of NITROGEN. This is a big one. According to what I've read sports fields should take at least 250lbs of N per year. Probably in something like six applications. Depending on the percentage of N in your mix this could be from 500lbs to 800lbs per acre of total fertilizer.
Or 11 to 18lbs per 1000 sqft total applied product.
But when you say 6lbs of N per 1000 sqft it sounds like a lot less...
My supervisor tends to get those two very important numbers turned around. I don't follow what he is saying because lbs per 1000 sq means nothing to me.
But, I suspect I'm boring you all.
I'm growing heirloom tomatoes, kale, collard greens, garlic, peppers and cilantro in the greenhouse but don't tell anyone. No one has figured out we maintain a compete green house to be able to rotate 14 plants in the library... Depending on how you figure it. Actually there are 28 plants because we rotate them.
Have a nice week...

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Another phone

My replacement iPhone 6s died. A flashing line would periodically appear at the top of the screen and the screen would quit responding to touch.
My iCloud account was full as I apparently checked the back up photos option. So, it didn't back up.
I attempted to back up and restore from my iBook. This did not restore the apps that Apple no longer blesses.
I had to find a new blogger App.
I'm using it.
I can now add links and videos easier.
I think...

Below is what it looks like using a reel mower in two inches of water.


Sunday, February 5, 2017

A train wreck...

Lady Gaga at the Super Bowl in Texas...

Absolutely hilarious...

Confirms what I've always thought about sports addicts wearing funny costumes and showing together.

No wonder Hilary almost won the election..

On the other hand, toilets are flushing all over America right now.

I hate my iPhone 6s continued

Now I am really screwed.
I just can't leave the phone alone.
I have been trying to shut it off or connect it to my computer.
I took out the sim card and put it in a different phone.
But I can't unlock my broken phone.
I type in the password and it will not recognize the last digit.
Then it suddenly started typing on its own.
Now it is locked.
If it was not 1/8" think and made of aluminum foil it would never bent in the first place. I swear I was backing everything up to iCloud and Google Drive but nothing shows up on my spare phone.
I would kind of like to go back to my old android but I robbed the SD card from my daughter's GoPro.
We are a tech family, sort of...
So I have to drive 30 miles to the Apple store to have them tell me to go to the Verizon store.
This is the main reason not to buy an iPhone. 
Don't buy anything that you have to drive 30 miles to have them tell you they can't fix it...

Saturday, February 4, 2017

I have owned Mac Computers Since buying a 512 and I Really Want To SWITCH and I hate my iPhone

My iPhone failed again.
Funny lines on the screen.
I have a 6s and it is a piece of crap.
I can't back it up because the screen failed and I can't type in the access code. It is connected to my computer but yet I can't unlock the stupid thing from my computer. Whacko Islamic terrorists can get their phones unlocked by the NSA but not you average user who just wants to save their notepad.
I have no idea who Apple hires to engineer their products but I think they are idiots.
First of all, if you have a problem with the phone you need to find an Apple store and unless you live in a major city that means a long drive for them to tell you the most common problems are not under warrantee.
Second it is so thin that someone who works for their living cannot use it without a thick case.
Third, iTunes is horrible.
It is insane that people actually buy new and modern iPhones.
I have one because I've been an Apple person forever and I stick with my favorite brands.
I will probably get another one for the same reason.
This is a stupid reason.
I would really like to get rid of my iPhone 6s.
In order to not break it you need a case which makes it to big to fit in a shirt pocket so it ends up in my back pocket and I sit on it and break it.
I do not weigh 400lbs.
The thing is...
It would not take that much to make a good usable phone. Perhaps they should try testing them with the people who actually need phones for work before coming out with a new product design.
In short...
I hate Apple and never intend to buy a new product from them again.
And I think Tim Cook is a moron.
Not a Steve Jobs that is for sure...

Monday, January 30, 2017

Monday is the worst

One of my coworkers was discussing his fight with depression after a painful divorce.
He got to the point of downing pills and Jim Beam.
He was found at the nick of time by a concerned friend who knocked down his door and saved his life.
My other coworker asked him about getting to the point where you just don't think you can make it out of bed to start the day and the overwhelming feeling you just can't do it anymore.
I was a bit shocked.
Not so much at the expression of the feeling, but that she just flat out asked the guy...
I have pretty much decided life is nothing but a bitter struggle which brief fleeting moments of happiness followed by continual frustration.
My plan of enjoying those fleeting moments of happiness has so far kept me out of the pill bottle. Don't take that statement too far as I don't think we have enough pills in our house to actually do oneself in. Don't have to worry about guns because I'm a terrible shot. I might fall off the roof again but that would be just because I am awkward.
Well that certainly went morbid in a hurry...
No I am not that depressed.
I just have all these farming ideas that I want to do.
I have 200 ton of hay to sell and ten semi-loads of straw to sell and I'm taking care of athletic grass and parking lots.
I want to buy a mixer-grinder and make pig feed. I want to buy another 2-tie baler, fix the stacker, build an automatic hay preservative injector, paint two tractors, build a sprayer, rebuild the fertilizer spreader, tear down a barn, build a new barn, put my daughter's t-shirts on Easy, work on my car, plant 2,000 acres, rebuild my fertilizer system on my grain drill, rebuild the grain drill...
In short...
Not say yes sir to a bunch of career bureaucrats and drive around in circles on a lawn mower.
I want to spend my Sunday going to church, hanging out with my daughter, riding motorcycle, making t-shirts, not doing all the stuff I don't have time to do because I have to have a job.
On the other hand I may actually have a retirement fund. If I can maintain my payments...
Have a nice day...

In other news:
The people who shot up the mosque in Quebec were not disgruntled Frenchmen. Nope, fellow Islamic people. Click Here...

We are watching the news of the Portland Airport protests. People are angrily screaming "Love on another..."
As someone who grew up on cold war commie stories I am bitterly amused at the programming that has been accepted by our friends who call themselves democrats. It is party line all the way. I have yet to hear, "running dogs of capitalist oppression," but I eagerly await the change in language.



Tuesday, January 24, 2017

These Are Not The Leaf-Blowers You Are Looking For...

My daughter has affected me.
I have never viewed a full Starwars movie. I find them a bit tedious. But I also like to make clever insider jokes with my daughter and so I have watched parts of the movies with her.
I hooked up a large screen surplus LCD TV in her room and wired up a Dynaco QD1 passive surround sound set up for her when she had a Star Wars marathon with her friends.

The other day at work someone asked for a leaf blower.
I replied, these are not the Leaf Blowers you are looking for.
He replied, these are not the Leaf Blowers I am looking for... Move along...
The other fellow thought it was rather funny.
I was happy to engage in a cultural reference that didn't involve 40 year old country-western music.

Later, another of my co-workers insisted on buying me lunch at the Sushi place in honor of payday and new responsibilities at work. He thinks that everything is "Part of God's Plan" and that "We have a mission" at the college.

I had the octopus.

It was weird and disgusting. You could feel the rubber tentacles and the funny little suckers. I looked at his empty and deflated brain sack and felt depressed.
This is how I will end up.
My brains jellied and drained out.
Perhaps I will be happier.

Oh boy, another day at work!
I'm learning the job of Athletics Groundskeeper.
I spent all day yesterday blowing off the track.
I have to figure out a way to listen to books on tape. This is mind numbing boredom...