Phone Repair

I still use a Samsung Alias 2 flip phone.  Got it in 2009.  A phone lasting six years shouldn’t be that big a deal.  It’s a great phone because of its e-ink keyboard, its dual hinge, and its metal case.  It bounces without any damage.  And best of all, using it only costs me $29/month!

But lately, I have been having trouble opening it into keyboard mode.  Sometimes it will open, other times it won’t.  So today I took it apart.  I removed the cover to the hinge and found it packed with lint.  Cleaned that out, but that wasn’t enough to fix my problem. Found the cover to the locking mechanism.  Under that was a spring, a plate and a ball bearing.  The ball locks into one of two locations to prevent you from rotating both hinges at the same time.  I cleaned that out, put it all back together and now it is as good as new.  Well, it works.  I’d say it should last me another 6 years, but odds are Verizon will turn off their CDMA network before then.

One problem with still using a flip phone is when I post a selfie.  People accuse me of using a pic from years and years ago.  Oh well.

Time Flies

Five months since having the stent inserted into an artery of my heart. Four months since the birth of the kittens.  Almost six months since taking in mama cat Sally. Eight months since my previous cat Oscar died.  And 9.5 months since being laid off. Oh and 3 years since the prostate surgery.

A few weeks ago was the 20th anniversary of Nick moving in with me. Around the same time was the 16th anniversary of him dumping me.  But two weeks ago I met up with him in San Jose for his mom’s 87th birthday (think that’s right).

Doing ok at the gym.  Still no heavy weights. Cardiologist says nothing that will raise my blood pressure.  If my face is turning red while lifting the weight, it’s too much. A year ago I weighed 205, but dieted down to 195 for a pool party in April.  Lost a lot after the stent, then had the flu in Feb and weighed in at 168.  One sixty eight??? Last time I weighed that was in high school. Back up to about 174 now. Someone came up to me at the gym and said I look fit.  Fit? I don’t want to look fit.  I want to look massive! Well I guess my massive days are behind me.

There is a social club that has warehouse parties 3-4 times a year, though there hasn’t been one in almost a year.  Work 2 hours and you get in free, (was $50 at door), plus get to keep any tips. I have bar tended  (open bar) three times in the past. So has Nick, Dino, Martin and Kevin,  This time they asked me to work closing coat check. It was fun.  Made $20 in tips, much less than the bartenders, but ok.


I has sads, again.

I haven’t written anything since the birth of the kittens, probably because writing of this would have made it too real.  Tyler had a congenital problem, which he may have been able to out grow and live a normal healthy life. But he didn’t.  He deteriorated very quickly yesterday and we had to put him down this morning. If he suffered it was only these past 12 hours.

If I had unlimited funds, I may have done more, and it may or may not have helped.  But I don’t, so I had to make difficult decisions. I hate making medical decisions based on how much room I have on my credit card.

Because I had to give him so much of my attention over these past few weeks, I became very attached.  I figured he would be the one I would keep.  He was great at climbing, especially up my pants and shirt, and wrestling with his siblings, but he would tire quickly and then just sit and watch the others. He had a great fun personality, always coming up to greet me when I came into the room.  He lived just 47 days and today only weight 1.2 pounds.  I will miss him greatly.

Not exactly the best pic of me, but a great one of Tyler

Not exactly the best pic of me, but a great one of Tyler


Seven weeks ago tonight, Martin picked up Sally from south central LA for the rescue he volunteers for.  He cleaned her up and kept her one night.  I took her the next day, officially only fostering her until we found her a home, but I knew I’d be keeping her.  Later we found out she was pregnant, and tonight she had her babies.  Gestation for cats is about 9 weeks, so that means she was 2 weeks pregnant when we got her.

We knew she’d be having them any day now.  Besides bursting at the seams, she had been scoping out places to have them.  Behind the printer under my desk in my bedroom, in the linen closet, and under the armoire in the living room.  Once I noticed her checking those places, I prepared each with towels and blankets, even blocking off two sides of the armoire with boxes to form a cave. Behind the printer I had put a laundry basket with towels.  At first Sally didn’t think much of it, although Piggy loved it and slept in it often. But today I noticed Sally in the basket a few times.

This evening I went to the gym from 8 to 9 with Martin.  On the way home we stopped to get some wraps to go, then I dropped him off and came on home.  Sally usually meets me at the door, but not tonight.  I came up stairs and found Sally sitting in the basket behind the printer.  She meowed loudly at me.  I came in and out of the bedroom a few times and each time she meowed, as if Something’s wrong but I don’t know what.  I sat next to her and she laid down in the basket and became calm.  I then saw her abdomen spasm and she cried out.  She was in labor.

Martin wanted to be here for the birth, so I gave him a call. I texted Ivan and Kevn.  Kevin had picked Halloween for the baby pool.  He also said there would be 3 and one would be black. Well, he got the date right.

Sally was very loud during the contractions.  So loud that I texted my neighbor to apologize for the noise. Sally’s cries also got Piggy’s attention.  Piggy would come and look in the basket but then run away when Sally cried out.

After about 20 minutes of contractions every few minutes, I saw two feet hanging out of her. I called Martin again to say he better hurry if he wants to see the births.  (Little did I know.) One more contraction and the first baby was out.  Shortly after Martin arrived. Less than 10 minutes after the first a second came out, again with Sally screeching out with the contractions.

Sally cleaned up these babies, eating the placentas, and we could hear their mews within a few minutes.

And then nothing.  Two and we’re done?  That was easy.  And hey, I don’t necessarily have to find homes. Four cats is not unreasonable. (Ivan would disagree.) But then 45 minutes later Sally started having contractions (and screeches) again. After about 10 minutes, out pops another.  (All three so far have been gray and white patches with some orange.) Ten minutes later  comes a fourth.  This one I had the best view of.  The others were mostly hidden and came out over multiple contractions.  The fourth just squirted out all at once.  This one, all white, also seemed to be completely covered in it’s own sack.  The others seems mostly free as they came out.

So four.  Will need to find homes, but not too bad.  Then an hour later we heard Sally have more contractions and out comes a fifth. This one was more like the first three, not coming out all at once.  Then 10 minutes later we hear Sally make a minor squeal. Not like the other contractions.  We don’t think anything of it. A few minutes later I’m looking at the kittens and count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5…6! The sixth was just outside her butt.  Not even sure she had noticed it, as it still had the placentas attached. I move Sally’s legs and she sees the kitten and starts cleaning it up.

Now it’s two hours later, and I’m pretty sure we’re done.  All six kittens seem to be doing well.  Five look pretty much the same, patches of white and grey, with bits of orange.  The other is white. Sally is clearly exhausted, but is caring for the kittens. Piggy is hiding.  Probably for the best.

I had a couple of layer of towels in the basket, and was able to get the top one out, so they’re not laying on something too wet and bloody.  But there still is plenty of blood and fluids, so I hope I can clean it up in the morning.

Oh and it rained tonight. First time in 6-7 months.