Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   line of sight neighbor
Tuesday, April 13 2010
Ray returned from somewhere this morning to announce that he had a house. This meant he (and his wife Nancy) had made an offer on a house and it had been accepted. More interesting was that the house was only two miles away, down in Old Hurley along Old Route 209. "You probably get my radio station," I observed. I wanted to see the house, so we hopped in my Subaru with the dogs and drove down.
My station was broadcasting Sarah Vowell's new audiobook The Wordy Shipmates (about the Puritans), and despite some static and bleed-over from a nearby Christian radio station, we could hear her nasally prepubescent voice perfectly clearly in the driveway of Ray's new house. It was a smallish brown bungalow with a large two-part brick garage out in back. Despite a decidedly suburban neighborhood, the lot size was a big 1.5 acres. We couldn't look inside the house because someone was still living in it, but it seemed like a good deal for $209,000. Still, given that Ray and Nancy were the purchasers, calling them "neighbor" was a bit premature.
One of the more interesting aspects of Ray's new house is that it has or nearly has line-of sight capabilities with our house, meaning there's a potential for us to share internet using a 802.11g microwave link. And the quality of that internet could be much better than our DSL, since down in Old Hurley one finds Time Warner cable and possibly even Verizon FiOS (though that's extremely unlikely).
Yesteday's cement toilet seat manufacturing project had revived my interest in cement as stucco (I'd used some of the leftover cement down in the greenhouse). So today I mixed up a bunch more Portland cement and, with the aid of fiberglass mesh, applied a thin veneer of cement over some foundation styrofoam that I'd yet to cover at the greenhouse's complex stepped southwest corner. This part of the foundation rises above the west edge of the south-facing glass, and there hadn't been much room for either styrofoam or cement board to cover it. So I'd simply painted the styrofoam. But the paint had subsequently blistered, and it had seemed like some sort of thin cement stucco veneer would be the the only solution. I've been impressed with the durability of mesh-strengthened Portland cement exposed to the weather. Even in thin veneers, it generally resists cracking and flaking.

For linking purposes this article's URL is:

previous | next