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Anybody else have trouble with pill bugs in Denver this year?Comments (3)I think pill bugs (which interestingly enough are not bugs-they're crustaceans) can and will eat plants on occasion but in general prefer to eat rotting stuff like milipedes. Now, say you have some tomatoes that got left on the vine too long, especially ones that are growing on the ground - or got damaged in some way I think that would be an open invitation to a host of creepy crawlies, pill bugs included. IMO what is more likely to happen is that something else comes along, causes damage to the plant and roly polys come in for a meal or dead or dying plants later. I have tons of these guys in my garden and anyone who uses mulch I garuntee does too. But, they have never caused any obvious damage, or at least none that I have attributed to them, and I tend to count them as beneficial detrivores like worms and millipedes. Just my $0.02 and Im sure that plenty of people will disagree and they may be right, Im certainly no expert....See More
Anybody have a trouble-free bluestar?Comments (42)2 weeks and going strong for my 30" RNB. Just had the WGS yesterday and everything checked out. I had thought the oven was running low to the knob setting. He went through a checkout routine at 250, 350, 450deg using a thermocouple and it tracked very well. Apparently the $5 oven thermo I picked up at walmart wasn't as accurate as I had assumed. I think, from a thermodynamic standpoint, the only way to get a half cooked, half bloody turkey would be to either use the broiler (only top would be cooked) or if the bird was not fully thawed (likely). Even if the oven burner was plugged on one side (difficult to envision how that could happen), the big steel plate that is the oven floor would even the temps out to some extend. Not an ideal cooking situation, by any means, but would not lead to the results previously stated....See More
Anybody else have to juggle bills with trying to saveComments (12)In managing most businesses, if the manager doesn't pay the employees, they don't continue coming to work very long. Each of us above being a toddler has a business that we run on the side. Nice part is, our employees don't charge for their work. As a matter of fact, they pay us! Each of those employees is called a Dollar (if you're in the U.S., it's a Bill; in Canada, a Coin, which we call a "Loonie"). If a kid sends that dollar out to buy ice cream it works for him/her once - and s/he can enjoy the "fruits" of the employee's work. Same for Mom and Dad regarding food, rent, clothing (unless they live in a much warmer climate than in this area - Buffalo had over a foot of snow, yesterday!). For many people in this part of the world, a car is pretty well in the category of "necessity", as well, as we have pretty well organized society around the car: many built-up areas no longer have sidewalks. If one finds ways to hang on to some of those dollars, they'll work for that person as long as s/he hangs on to them, with one exception - if they stick them into the mattress. Banks like to tout their guarantee that when we leave money with them, they'll pay rent on it, and guarantee to pay back every dollar that we lent them. They never mention the other guarantee - that, apart from the rent on the loan, they won't pay us one dollar more, either. But, there's a problem: I say that, when we invest our dollars where we are guaranteed to get each back, that their number can't grow, either. And the value of each declines each year that we own it. I say that there's two rats that eat your cheese: the income tax people want to talk to you each year about all of your earnings in that year. And they want some of it, of course. In Canada, they quite different rates of tax on varying kinds of income. If, apart from the rent, the number of your invested dollars can't grow, you need to add some of those invested dollars to the asset each year so that your purchasing poweer doesn't shrink as the value of each of those dollars of your asset shrinks. That rat's called "inflation" and it has eroded the value of each of your saved dollars every year - since the 1930s. With the rates of interest that borrowers are willing to pay these days, when we take out some for tax, and more to add to the saved dollars, each of which will buy less each year, often times there isn't any left. Know what? The rats eat first! If there's any left, you get that. Recently, there's none left. Imagine - the bank (as borrower) makes more on your money than you do, quite a bit of the time! As a matter of fact, every borrower, whether bank, corporation or individual figures that s/he can make more on the borrowed money than it costs him/her ... or they wouldn't borrow, would they? Suppose you'd put $10,000. into the bank 15 years ago, on a 5-year certificate, and renewed it twice since. Now, when you receive that money (apart from the rent) they'll pay you precisely what they borrowed - $10,000. That $10,000. would have bought a decent car, 15 years ago. Not now: inflation cut its value substantially through those years. Did inflation hurt the bank? No, they rented that money out to someone else (actually, usually about 8 "someone"s), at a higher fee than they paid you. Suppose I borrowed that $10,000., 15 years ago, agreeing to pay the bank the interest only monthly, and did that. How much would I owe the bank now? Right - exactly $10,000.00. Which will buy a great deal less now than it would then. So I gained from inflation: the guy who put his money into the bank lost ... unless the interest covered it. Farmers like to stick one seed into the ground and have it grow into an ear of corn (maybe even a couple of ears). Similarly, I like to invest a substantial portion of my assets into situations where I expect them to grow, given a number of years - and mine go back varying lenths of time to about 40 years. Some grew nicely ... and several paid increasing amounts on the investment over the years. However, I haven't had to answer to the income tax people about that increase in value ... and won't, until I sell them (or die). Which gives me much of the benefit of the tax-deferral in the tax-deferred retirement accounts (but with far fewer restrictions). And when I cash them, I pay tax on the increase at half regular rate. Some didn't pay anything, or sporadically. Some of those assets grew in value, more than enough to cover the ongoing returns that they hadn't paid (and on which I'd have had to pay tax at the time). Some didn't pay ... and went down in value, into the bargain. As a wise person said, "You can't win 'em all!". An investment group of about 25 that has met monthly for around ten years, that I've attended for six or seven, calls those latter experiences "tuition". In the school of learning how to manage money more effectively. When did you last merit a free luch? Good wishes for learning how to make your income and assets work better for you than for the other guys. ole joyful P.S. Actually, many of us get a "free lunch" here at Gardenweb, and various other places - for we've learned a lot, and it hasn't cost us anything but time, and internet fees, that we pay anyway. Actually, a while ago, it cost the guys giving the advice - for one could read for free ... but the owners charged a fee for one to open his (her?) big fat yap. Quite an imposition for us former clergy! Wouldn't you agree? o j...See More
Windows 8 Version: Anybody Else Having Trouble Learning It????Comments (15)It's unfortunate that they decided that they decided to make it favor a touch screen environment. I do a lot of work on my desktop. I can just get more work done on it than the laptop. My last computer had a touch screen, and I almost never used the feature. It was just really inconvenient to switch between that and using the keyboard. I was helping someone last weekend try to do something on her new computer with Windows 8 and we were both frustrated trying to figure out where things were. We finally had to switch to the new Office at work. They had to bring consultants in for 2 days of training on the differences so that we could get back to actually doing work. I just don't understand the logic of taking a program that people know well enough to use in their sleep and changing it so dramatically that it almost brings their productive output to a halt. I just see that Microsoft made more money, and our company lost money. There's no great improvement to the software that translates into time savings or improved output on our side. I have other devices with touch screens and love them, but for cranking out data and text, it's not the way to go. Sorry, rant over....See More
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