Monday, October 31, 2011
Saturday, October 29, 2011
- Watch a video on how to install the mirror. No exotic equipment is required, just Phillips and flat blade screwdrivers and a 10mm wrench.
- Locate the part for $37 including shipping. It's in black.
- Determine the official paint color is #931 "Frosted Iris".
- Find a local paint shop that will mix 931, which Sherwin Williams will. $31 for paint, sprayer, and gloss coat.
- Mask the new mirror, then paint, paint, paint, glosscoat, glosscoat.
- Take out three screws to pull back the door interior
- Pull out the old mirror's electrical connection; unbolt mirror.
- Install new mirror, insert make electrical connections
- Test mirror adjustment, remove masking
- Tight door panel
Friday, October 28, 2011
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
- This day is call'd the feast of Crispian.
- He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
- Will stand a tip-toe when this day is named,
- And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
- He that shall live this day, and see old age,
- Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbors,
- And say, "To-morrow is Saint Crispian."
- Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
- And say, "These wounds I had on Crispin's day."
- Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
- But he'll remember with advantages
- What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
- Familiar in his mouth as household words,
- Harry the King, Bedford, and Exeter,
- Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
- Be in their flowing cups freshly remembered.
- This story shall the good man teach his son;
- And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
- From this day to the ending of the world,
- But we in it shall be remembered-
- We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
- For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
- Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
- This day shall gentle his condition:
- And gentlemen in England now a-bed
- Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
- And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
- That fought with us upon St Crispin's Day.
Once we're done scrolling past a neat, toy-soldiers-on-map version of Europe, The Three Musketeers gives us a steampunk scuba diver emerging from the canals of Venice with repeating crossbows.
Okay, so it's going to be THAT kind of movie. I mean, if this is seventeenth-century Italy we can't even call the scuba rig "steampunk" because there aren't any steam engines yet.
Well, at least your expectations have been set. It's going to be THAT kind of movie. This isn't historical fiction by a long shot. It misses the romanticized historical mark by a wide margin as well. What you've got here is full-on, brass-balls to the clockwork-secret-passage-wall alternate history. And if you can make it past the waterproof repeating crossbows, you're in for a real ride.
Sunday, October 23, 2011
The plot is big. The action is big, but we kept it plausible. The tactics/equipment stuff is solid. One of my proof readers is a guy that Jack Bauer would hang out with. We did our homework. Considering that we wrote this years ago and put in the Arab Spring, a narcotrafficante revolution in Mexico, and stealth helicopters, none of which (we knew) existed at the time, I’d say we were at least semi-plausible in our brainstorming process. We took some liberties with reality, all authors do, but we tried not to make them stupid liberties.
This is Mike’s first book, and it is a darn good one that deserves to be read. For those of you who don’t know, Mike is an EOD Technician, currently defusing roadside bombs in Afghanistan. He will still be in Afghanistan, risking his life and being awesome, when his first novel appears in stores. Places like NPR can talk about thriller writer street cred, but Mike plays high-explosive chess against terrorist IEDs before breakfast. Most first time authors are super excited to do their first book signings, but Mike can’t because he’s deployed… Think about that for a second… He can’t do book signings for the really nifty book he wrote because he is too busy DEFUSING MURDER BOMBS.
For most authors, the most exciting part of our day is when we spill Coke Zero on our keyboard. EOD are complete lunatics that do something so absurdly dangerous that complete snake eating warriors look at them and say "F’ that noise, let the dude in the big suit play with the booby trapped death machine."
Mike is humble. You probably won’t ever hear him talk about that kind of thing. Luckily for him, I’m not humble at all. :-)
- You will solve a problem faster by looking at it and figuring it out, rather than by continuing to try to force it when force didn't work the first time.
- Use the right tool. In retrospect, I should have gotten 10mm socket wrench instead of a normal wrench; that would have made two of the nuts a lot easier.
- Sometimes you should just pay the shop $25 and let them do it.
Thursday, October 20, 2011
CLOSE CALLS: Billion-Ton Comet May Have Missed Earth by a Few Hundred Kilometers in 1883: A reanalysis of historical observations suggest Earth narrowly avoided an extinction event just over a hundred years ago. Shades of, well, you know.
UPDATE: Reader Chris DeBoe writes: “Shades of The Peshawar Lancers by SM Stirling, which posits a comet hitting North America and Europe during Victoria’s reign, and the British government relocating to India. And the Great Game still goes on.” Several readers made that connection, which I should have caught. I read that book and it was good — one of several that made my list of recommended alt-history reading.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Monday, October 17, 2011
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Thursday, October 13, 2011
- "Hot babes, Richard. Hot. Babes."
- "You can play seven man Diplomacy and you won't lose any friends over it, because they won't be your friends yet." (Richard said "I'd say you're the only person in the world who would make this argument, but I'm sure your dad would make it too." Which I would).
- "Australia has a labor shortage."
- "You're in DC, Richard. Number one target in the world. You know how many terrorist plots have gotten foiled in Melbourne? None. Because there aren't any."
- "Kangaroo. Kangaroo. Tastes delicious and it's good for you."
- "No one will mistake you for your twin brother any more."
- "Close Action. With my brilliant tactics and your Kunkel Fail Field, we'll devastate the opposition. We can even tile the floor with blue hexagons to match the Close Action maps. Close Action, Richard. You know you want it."
- "Did I mention the hot babes?"
- "You like wine? You think the Australians export the good stuff?"
- "Snow? Yes, there's snow. Gwen goes skiing in the Alps. The Australian Alps. Yes, they have them."
- "Melbourne is one of the top three cities in the world to live in. In. The. World, Richard."
- "You have a cat? You can bring your cat, but you could also get a wombat. There is no cooler pet than a wombat, Richard. None. But bring your cat carrier if you must."
- "You can go scuba diving with me."
- "You don't have to go. Making a decision like this is not for everyone. In fact, millions of people have failed at life and been completely blotted out by the tide of history. No pressure."
- "You want to climb to the top of a bridge? You can do that. You want an opera house? Got one."
- "People are going to be lining up for the privilege of being my roommate. There will be fistfights. You know this. You need to get your name on the lease now."
- "The Great Barrier Reef. It's great. It's a reef. It's a barrier. It has glowing fish. Clams. Purple luminescent clams, Richard. How can you say no to purple glowing clams? And China is close by. You can pop over and see the Great Wall, which is like the Great Barrier Reef was before it got water and fish and was pretty."
- "Basically, I'm not hearing any reason you should stay, except you don't want your parents upset. But you'll be in Australia. Are they going to call you to fuss about it, at three dollars a minute for a phone call? They are not. Come to Australia, Richard. Coooome .... tooooo ..... Australiaaaa ...."
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Sunday, October 9, 2011
Saturday, October 8, 2011
Friday, October 7, 2011
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
"Once you figure out why your cell phone gets better and cheaper every year but your public schools get more expensive and less effective, you can apply that model to answer a great many questions about public policy. Not all of them, but a great many."