>Chili’s switches to LED bulbs

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Today I dropped into Chili‘s for lunch. I sat there for a while as my food was being prepared.  I read the news on my cellphone.  Just before my Old Timer arrived I looked up and noticed the light bulb was unusual.  It was a new LED bulb.  I looked around the restaurant and ALL the bulbs were LED.  I was shocked and awesomed!  I was going to ask the waitress if this was the only location that did that but expecting her to have no idea what I was talking about, I googled it on my phone.  It turns out that ALL 827 Chili’s restaurants have switched saving up to $3.7 million dollars a year.  No only do LED bulbs directly reduce energy usage but they do not give off all that heat that has to be removed by the air conditioner.

I am really impressed that Chili’s took this huge step and I’m really surprised that it wasn’t big news.  I’m going to send a tip to the local news and newspapers in case they didn’t know.  It is a very important story.

Huge thanks to Chili’s for being forward about this.  I can only hope that other businesses and residents will take the cue and get with the energy saving program.  It’s not about the cost.  It is about the goodness.

>Serious Contemplation

>People familiar with this blog will know well that I hate living in San Antonio. The reasons are too numerous to list. For decades I’ve wished to move out to the country.  Lately I’ve been obsessed with a small town in Colorado.  I visited a few years ago and looked at land.  My desires exceeded my budget.  Now that my requirements are lessened I think it is doable.  I can buy 1-2 acres of land for $15-20,000.  I can build a small one bedroom, one bath house for probably less than $40,000.  I am thinking of hiring a property management company to rent out my current house.  If I could get an income of, say, $700 a month from that I could probably not even have to get a job. I could be retired at 43.  That would be so sweet.  I would probably take at least two years to finish the house and relax.  I might do a little consulting for some extra dough.  My needs in life are pretty basic.  I don’t need a lot of money to live.  I don’t have lofty goals or wishes to see the world.  All that comes to you on TV now.  I just want to live without stress and do whatever I feel like around the house.  No traffic.  No humans.  No boss. 

The only hard part will be breaking it to my mom.  I’m not sure how she will take it.  I think she will be very sad but understanding.  This really is a matter of life and death for me.  I can’t go on living my current lifestyle.  Some people would think I’m crazy to leave what most would call an excellent life.  I call it pure hell and I can’t take much more of it.   I have all the material things but none of the psychological things.  Material things are worthless.  Pointless without psychological satisfaction. 

This is a very tough decision to give up some things that I may never get back.  I probably wouldn’t want them back but still.  It is a big change and big changes are scary.  Fortunately I am only in the obsession stage right now.  I’m gathering information to make an intelligent decision.  I’m far from the point of no return but working towards it.  There are other options but none are as sweet as this one.   

Overall, wouldn’t it be a shame to spend one’s whole life in the same city one was born in?  A city that makes one absolutely miserable?  That’s not living by any definition.  It is basic existence.  There is more to life than mere existence.

>Shooting at the University of Texas

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Today at the University of Texas in Austin, 19-year-old Colton Tooley fired shots with an AK-47 assault rifle, then went into a library and shot himself to death.  There’s nothing unusual or special about the incident itself.  It has become a common occurance.  The interesting thing about this story is that his friends and family say he was intelligent and incapable of hurting anyone.  Personally, he looks like a thug to me.  His family didn’t have a clue that he was so angry that he would do such a thing.  It goes to show that even the people you know best don’t even take the time to give a damn how you are feeling.  I don’t think people even look at others anymore.  The whole country has beome like New York City where you walk down the street and don’t even acknowledge the existance of all the people you pass.  People just don’t care about others anymore.  I know for a fact that he showed signs in his own way but nobody even took the time to notice.   I hope he left a suicide note so we will know what was going on in his life that made him do this.  What do you want to bet he was lonely?

>Why am I watching Glee?

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Why do I keep watching Glee?  I’m not sure.  I started watching it because I thought it would be interesting following a high school choir.  I was in the band in high school so it is at least partially related.  In reality, I am quickly losing interest.  I made a decision before the new season that I wouldn’t watch anymore.  I had nothing else to watch so I went ahead and saw the first new episode of 2010.  Brittney Spears.  I don’t really know anything about BS.  She is supposed to have been on the show but since I don’t know what she looks like, I’ll have to take their word for it.  Overall the show is uninspired and common.  I don’t understand why it is so popular.

I hope they make a new show centered around the band.  That could be really cool.  Did you ever see Drumline?  That was an awesome movie.  It would make a great TV series.  There’s plenty of drama and stuff in the band.  Hint for Hollywood.  If you like Glee, You’ll love The Band.

>Relief at last!

>Halle-fricken-lujah!  We FINALLY got some cool, dry air here in crappy San Antonio.  The unbearable, hot, humid summer from hell is finally over.  (Last year was worse!)  Instead of the sweltering nightly low of 80 it actually got down to an open-window 56 degrees!  Holy Cow!  It’s like god finally sprung for the cash to fix the world’s air conditioner.  We will finally have a nice day under 90 degrees where people can once again go outside and walk their dog to come crap on my lawn.  I can breathe again!  Long, long, long, long awaited relief.  God I hate this place.

>Affordable LED bulb

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While shopping at Lowes I browsed throught the light bulb aisle.  I love light bulbs!  I noticed a new LED bulb for $17.99 made by Feit.  A bit expensive for a light bulb but cheaper then they used to be.  Being an experimenter I had to by one to try it out.  I reported on a cheap one from Walmart a while back that wasn’t really useful.  It works fine in my closet but since it is hardly on it’s not really saving me any money.   This new one from Lowes gives off much more light than that other one.  It is not quite as bright as the 40W fluorescent bulb I replaced it with but it is quite acceptable for my front porch light which I like to leave on all night.  The package says it uses only 6.5 watts.  I measured only 4 watts.  Compared with the full 40 watts of an incandescent bulb, it uses only a fraction of the power and gives off plenty of usable light and no heat. It will last probably for the rest of my life.  As soon as these bulbs come down to less that $10.00 I might use them all over.  It’s really exciting to get more for less.  As soon as everyone switches from incandescent bulbs the energy the world requires will be greatly reduced.  If you can’t afford the new LED bulbs, the least you can do is switch to compact fluorescent.  They are dirt cheap and so much better for our energy situation.  I understand the last old style bulb factories has just shut down in the US and the bulbs will be completely banned by 2012.  If we still have electricity after 2012 we will be using a lot less of it for lighting.