Author Archives: Bigdawg

Tool Saga July 2021

Not to dwell on past Lowes examples of customer service. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when I placed a MyLowes order, received the ready email then went to pick it up. When I arrived they had the items on the counter before they noticed that they had sent it to a store in Idaho. 1750 miles away. They told me that they couldn’t give me my merchandise because they sent it to Idaho. And wouldn’t give me a refund, in spite of me showing them a receipt. They said Idaho would have to do a return charge and that may take days. I then sought out a manager,
same line. They expected me to tie up my money for something I already bought and had to spend the same amount again if I wanted to buy it at the local store. I walked out at that point.

I then went and ordered it on Amazon. Two day delivery and I never had to leave home. Mind you I had returned two 10 dollar items to Amazon within the last two weeks. The first they actually sent me a UPS return label. The second time they figured out shipping cost just as much as the item cost and told me to keep it, they issued a return. Contrast that with Lowes.

Next I needed some paint to paint the kitchen cabinets. I proceeded to the Benjamin Moore dealer and researched it. The owner came out and answered all my questions and gave his expertise. I don’t care if I have to spend another 10 or twenty dollars. Besides, it’s a better paint. I went on the website and it’s what warehouses use to paint floors that forklifts will drive on.

Next I needed a pressure washer to replace a five year old $ 300 Troy Bilt, the damn thing just would not start. I replaced it with a Harbor Freight Bauer electric one. The pressure was almost as good as the old one. 2000 vs 2500 PSI. And it just runs. Listed for $230, got a $30 discount for joining the $30 buyers club. And as I was starting to load it. Two associates just materialized and loaded it for me.You would have had to run all over the place at Lowes just to find anybody. It has an attached soap bottle, the old one didn’t, the motor only turns on when activating the
wand. Silence.

And get this, I needed to replace a six year old 4 volt, $25 electric screwdriver that didn’t have enough umph. HF had a 12 volt detachable lithium ion drill for $20. A real drill.

I’m just waiting until my $220 Stihl weed whacker refuses to start. They have a Bauer that runs on batteries. $54 + 44 for the battery + 22 for the charger. And they take off $20 if you buy all three at once. That’s down to $100. And it just runs
Between Harbor Freight, Amazon, local paint stores and Tractor Supply. I will not step foot in this Lowes ever again!

UPDATE: My Stihl weed wacker worked third pull. Dang It! I haven’t started that in two years. That Stihl is good stuff. I bought it when the salesman took it off the display, took it in the service bay, put gas in it and it started second pull,. I told him I want that one.


I bought myself a Harbor Freight battery powered chainsaw to replace the Craftsman one of ten years. (yeah the old Sears store)

I was in the garage just putting on the bar and chain, filling it with bar oil when my wife walked in. She asks if it will cut a small tree. I thought she meant the branches. I said yeah sure, I gave her a set of goggles and a three minute safety brief and off she went. Before I could clean up the bench and go check on her, she had sawed down a 20 ft Magnolia tree. The first time my chain saw was used, my wife sawed a tree down

May be an image of outdoors
May be an image of 1 person, standing, outdoors and indoor

Yard Photos From Cousin Kathy

On Facebook my cousin Kathy has posted several photos of yard decorations. Some of these have been inventive.

Like this whimsical elf house made out of a cut down tree. Now I wish I hadn’t cut my stumps so low when I felled some trees.








Or the rainwater garden








Privacy planter








Pallet Seating








Boozehound Hummingbird feeders








Fun with blocks

Or the redneck screw art

Olympics Who Cares?

The current Olympics to Tokyo has the lowest opening ceremony TV ratings ever. When I was a kid everybody watched the Olympics. Now with 200 plus channels and streaming venues they just don’t seem that important.

Add to that the politics involved now. From no spectators allowed, athletes protesting one thing or another (they’re Olympic athletes, what the hell do they have to protest about) and all the political correctness now.

Oh there have been some memorable games before. Like the 1980 Miracle on Ice.



Then there is the fiasco at Beijing, when they forgot to invite Mark Spitz when Michael Phelps tied his gold medal record.

Or when Kimberly Rhode, she became the first American individual athlete to win a medal in five consecutive Olympic Games in 2012. But that’ shooting who besides me cares.


Made You Look

For today’s stupid news. A few weeks ago State Rep. Mandy Powers Norrell, a Lancaster Democrat, accused West Point and Annapolis cadets of racist hand gestures.

Well guess what? The Service Academies investigated and found out it was, drum roll please, the circle game. Come on I was doing this in the nineties in the Air Force. Rules are ” The objective of the “circle game” or “basic killer” [1][2] is to form a circle with one’s thumb and forefinger (the “OK” gesture) on the leg below the waist and get someone else to look at it.[2] If the person looks, the gesture-maker gets to hit them,[1] or is simply considered “out” or “killed”.[2] In some variations the target can put their index finger through the hole without looking at it and thereby win the right to punch the maker of the gesture ” Gained widespread use when featured on a Malcolm in the Middle episode.

Unreal. Now they say the OK sign is a hate symbol. Hey proclaimers of the offended. Just because you say something doesn’t make it true. No you can’t have this, it’s not yours. Nobody ere gave it to you. I’m currently using it, go wank off.

Let me know what you think. The comments and pictures are all in fun. No sense of humor? Too bad.

To Space Force and Beyond

On December 20 2019 President Trump sighed into law, as part of the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act, the creation of a separate but equal military branch the US Space Force. Here is a direct mission quote from the Space Force website.

” The U.S. Space Force is a military service that organizes, trains, and equips space forces in order to protect U.S. and allied interests in space and to provide space capabilities to the joint force. USSF responsibilities will include developing military space professionals, acquiring military space systems, maturing the military doctrine for space power, and organizing space forces to present to our Combatant Commands “

The new Space Force is suppose to be a separate but equal branch operating under the Air Force, much as the Marines operate under the navy. This is the first new branch in 70 years, when the Air Force split from the Army. I suspect that it will migrate much like that did. The Air Force took a few years growing apart from the Army Air Corp. Then they started naming their command structure different. Wearing their own disincentive uniforms, down to the color of them. Even changed the enlisted rank insignia, flipping the chevrons over and calling them wings.

At first the Air Force space command will transition over to the Space Force with the eventual vision being to incorporate the Army and Navy’s space missions. I personally would like to see totally distinctive uniforms and a new rank structure. Naturally E1through E9 and O-1 through O-10 grades would be the same. But I’d like to see a blending of service rank terms. I don’t know what to call the lowest enlisted ranks. (please no space man or cadet) But let’s keep the sergeant terms of some sort. Maybe have Technical Sergeants and Gunnys. Maybe have Lt.s and Commanders. Keep the General term as it’s more of a universal norm.

And let’s make a unique uniform. Maybe in a Grey or Black or some combination there of. Just for heaven’s sake make it look like a military uniform and not a Brooks Brother suit. (McPeak) And let’s have a bus driver cap, it just looks classy.

Christmas at the Movies 2019

It’s getting harder to come up with new movies. I keep seeing the same old ones. But here goes.

The Christmas Chronicles

A new fare technically last year but I didn’t see it until this year. New telling of someone wrecks Christmas. Helps Santa save Christmas. But in a new refreshing way. I recommend. Starring Kurt Russell as St. Nick. Find it on Netflix.

Christmas With the Kranks

Couple decide to blow off Christmas and head for the tropics. Empty Nester kids announce they are going to show up after all. A mad dash at the last minute to do a months worth of decorating. Hilarity ensues. Another Tim Allen Christmas movie. He’s becoming to be the go to Christmas actor.

FX’s A Christmas Carol

Fox Extra’s channel retelling of A Christmas Carol. Starring Guy Pierce. This one’s a little dark, so it may not be for the very young.

Things of My Past

I Am This Old

These are a few things that I remember from my childhood and teenage years. If you showed a lot of people these things now a lot of them wouldn’t even know what they were. How many do you remember?

Christmas at the Movies 2018

This is the third installment of Christmas Movies. Search the post for the other two. Starting off is one I recently saw on FXM.


This story revolves around a boy names Max. He belongs to a modern suburban family , a mother and father that are consumed with the hectic problems of everyday life. A teenage older sister. And a kindly grandmother that mostly speaks German. Add to that the redneck hillbilly relative that are dropping in for the holidays. This group’s patriarch is played by David Koechner if that tells you anything.

Max gets disillusioned about the whole Christmas thing and disavows Santa Clause. This causes a demonic evil Santa called Krampus rise and start detroying the neighborhood in a whiteout blizzard. After much death and destruction, only Max believing in Santa again can save them.

All in all a nice dark comedy / horror movie. I had passed it up before but found it entertaining.

Prep and Landing

While not technically a movie, it a television show. The Dawg’s brother Rob told him about this one. There are two 30 minute specials Prep and Landing and Prep and Landing: Naughty vs Nice. These were co-developed by Disney and ABC. You can find these on one of their affiliate channels. I know Freeform channel is airing them this year. These revolve around the behind the scene elves that make Christmas possible. Wayne, a Christmas elf, is part of an elite organization known as “Prep & Landing”, whose job is to ready millions of homes around the world for Santa Clause’s visit. Nice story combined with good animation, something that Christmas cartoons aren’t known for.

Four Christmases

About a couple, Brad and Kate played by Vince Vaughan and Reese Witherspoon, was filmed at the airport after their flight to Fiji was cancelled due to fog. A local TV news crew filmed them at the check in line. After all of their divorced parents see them on TV they are forced to go pay them visits individually. Naturally each visit is a different type of train wreck. Starring Robert Duvall and Mary Steenburgen as Brad’s parents. Jon Voight abd Sissy Spacek as Kate’s parents. Vince Vaughan plays the lovable straight man that seems to get constantly psychically abused.and Reese Witherspoon as always her generations go to comedic actress .

This movie is loaded with an all star cast and I highly recommend it. Go check out the cast list at IMDB.

The Santa Clause

And there’s The Santa Clause staring Tim Allen as Scott. A toy salesman. When Santa lands on his roof he wakes Scott’s son Charlie. Scott rushes outside startles Santa and falls off the roof unconscious. Scott finds a card on Santa that reads put the suit on the reindeer will know what to do. After Tim Allen puts on the suit Santa disappears. Son Charlie persuades Scott to deliver the rest of the toys. They climb up the roof into the sleigh and the reindeer fly off to the appointed houses. Afterward the head elf tell him that because he put the suit on he is legally obligated to be Santa. He goes on to tell him that he has one year to get his affairs in order before reporting back to the North Pole next Thanksgiving. During the next year he starts to transform into Santa. I’ll stop right there.

Tim Allen goes on to star in two more Santa Clause movies. All in all a fun filled movie. Tim Allen delivers a good old fashion holiday spirited movie. The Santa Clause movies are becoming Christmas classics. As a bonus on Tim’s show Last Man Standing he makes a tongue in cheek reference when he says: “Who do you think I am, Santa?”