"The basement is leaking!" This announcement from below got my attention and meant no ping pong session that evening. The dishwasher appeared to be the source, and I discovered the most common dishwasher installation defect. A piece of string took care of the missing high loop, but the sink has always been slow to drain and this provided the backup which flooded the dishwasher.
A 25-foot snake can be had for less than a dollar a foot now. I had tried before with a toilet auger (going through the trap, in case that is less gross) but found nothing. The longer snake hit a snag some twenty feet in, and pulled up a pasty white material which looked like undissolved detergent. It was nasty, and my first instinct was to clean the barb by rinsing it off in another sink.
That's not much of a home improvement, just trying to keep the place from destroying itself. The painting job is about half done, removing wallpaper and chair rail scars being the biggest efforts. Upgraded baseboard will require a mitre saw, and I'm unsure between renting and buying a good saw.
TensorFlow installation got bogged down in some kind of dependency hell. You google the error message and find ten ways to fix it, try and figure out which one is least likely to cause further problems and eventually try one at random and get a new error.
While messing with the Raspberry Pi, I remembered the Pi-hole project. I've rarely used adblocking software, figuring the ads are a kind of tax on browsing, annoying little reminders that I could be reading a book. But it was so fun, and so easy to set up, and so satisfying to have this pocket-sized server filtering DNS for the whole house, and so interesting to see all the blocked lookups. I haven't mentioned the change, to see if anyone notices.
I got into a debate with a daytrading friend about the possibility of profit. I've seen some smart friends try to get ahead and not conspicuously succeed, and my gut feeling is that there is too much noise to allow any short-term signal to be recognized. Long term buy-and-hold is a proven technique, and in my view short term trades only work in a cumulative fashion by exposing the trader to the very long term 1.83% per year average per capita GDP growth in the U.S. (and transaciton costs plus capital gains taxes could easily consume this profit).
An interesting conclusion is that I would not worry about the "emotional" investor who breaks the rules by selling low in a panic, or buys high with FOMO. There's a narrative showing these are mistakes if you look for it, but there is an equally plausible narrative that the seller avoided greater losses and the buyer got in while a winner was rising. If emotional investors predictably lost value, you could win by betting against them.
I proposed a challenge in which I would simulate trades in a dartboard portfolio, selecting stocks at random from a list of most active stocks. At first I updated my positions once a week, but this was too arbitrary and mechanical. Things got more exciting when I set up a portfolio containing $1000 each of five randomly selected stocks and simulated limit orders by selling as soon as I became aware that any position had gained 2.5%, recording the 2.5% profit and rolling the returns into whatever stock was then most active. This is a brainless strategy and not recommended, but should be possible in practice.
After two days the paper portfolio was up 2%, with five sells (a 380% APR!). By the end of the week the portfolio was flat again, at $5004.
Despite my Google Apps script sending me an e-mail within ten minutes of a sell condition, my reaction time causes lags, so when SPCE rocketed from $32.17 to $38.67 today (up 20%), I only got two round trip sales out of it. But it doesn't matter! At any point in time, future performance is unpredictable, so there's no reason to prefer getting in earlier or later. The SPCE position is now down 8%, worth $1010, and the portfolio is down 0.9%.
One simulated portfolio is too insignificant to prove anything. For more data, you could test strategies against past performance, but you can't trade in the past so that seems pointless. My expectation is that all five positions will eventually be too far underwater to recover quickly, and the strategy will revert to long-term buy-and-hold, which actually works.
Peanuts and crows
I have drawn the attention of many crows, and one Metro maintenance van, while hiding peanuts in various niches of the parking garage top deck. One difficult hiding place is regularly emptied between visits.
On one occasion I had the opportunity to experience a bird in the hand while trying to rescue two young birds that got trapped in a stairwell.
At 11:45 Saturday morning I parked our 2006.5 Kia Optima on the street, then went inside to get the kid ready for a class. At 11:46 a neighbor drove his Volvo 850 into the Kia, destroying the driver side wheels and door. Nobody hurt, but the tow driver and insurance agent agreed that it appears to be totaled.
We have gotten pretty good at yogurt in the Instat Pot, and haven't had to use store yogurt as starter for weeks. The weekly loaf of sandwich bread in the Pullman pan is still irregular. Sometimes the dough rises so much it overflows the pan, other times it is sticky and low-volume. Assuming I am correctly counting four cups of flour (which is far from certain) I try to pay attention to ambient temperature, milk temperature, rest timing, and quantity of sugar (using maple syrup, which is too messy to measure).
When there is overflow, the extra becomes rolls or pretzels or, this week, cinnamon buns which turned out much better than the loaf itself.