Collapsible Box For My Bike

My bike with a collapsible box

I keep saying that my new $5 back wheel is just a temporary fix and that I’m not going to put any more money into my old bike, but then something happens and I need to put more money into it.  It’s just something that I needed to do to be able to continue using my bicycle.

I think that when I had my accident, the rack got bent somehow because when I put the $5 thrift store wheel on, the rack was pressed up against the wheel.  In order to continue using the rack, I had to unscrew it from the bottom and screw it back on crooked.  It still works, but now my problem is that when I am riding with the townie basket full of groceries, it pulls the rack closer to the wheel, which makes it very difficult to ride.  I tried putting the townie basket on the other side, but then I wouldn’t be able to lock my bike up correctly the way I have been.  The townie basket is in the way and the only way I could lock it up is to bring the basket with me.  Yeah, that’s not going to happen.

My partner bought a $5 collapsible box from Dollar General and I wondered if one of those would work.  He bought me a box and I didn’t put it on right away because I wasn’t sure how I was going to do that.  I had 2 options, put it on the way that I did, widthwise, or lengthwise.  I suppose it would work either way, but I just figured that if it were lengthwise, the back wouldn’t be sitting on the rack and it would probably eventually break.  I needed some time to think of how I was going to do this, and today I did it.

I was sitting in my room and suddenly it just clicked.  I thought to myself, I wonder if we have some wood in the back yard that I could cut and put under the box to support it.  I went back there and found a long piece of wood, so I measured 2 pieces the length of the box and cut them. I drilled holes in the bottom of the box and the wood and screwed them together, but the flat head is on the bottom so nobody can unscrew them from the top. The top is just smooth caps so they look riveted. I had leftover wood so I put that in the middle so you can’t really see it. When I was done putting the wood under the collapsible box, I drilled holes in the bottom of the box through the wood and into the rack, but only enough to mark where I was going to drill through the metal in the rack. 3 holes. Of course I had to remove the rack, wouldn’t want drill holes in my wheel. Also it would be very difficult to screw the screws tight into the caps if I have the wheel in my way.

So that was all that it took.  I don’t have any assurance that the box won’t eventually break, after all it is very thin cheap plastic, but it was only $5 so it wasn’t a huge investment at all.  It was a fun little project.

My old townie basket was fabric, so it wasn’t as sturdy as a plastic box.  It only held 1 bag of groceries, of course when I say 1 bag I don’t mean plastic, I mean those reusable fabric bags that they sell at the grocery stores.  This new collapsible box will most likely hold 2 bags which will make it so much easier for me to buy a bunch of groceries on my own.  Whenever I go to the store, I usually have to make sure I only buy a few items, or whatever will fit in 1 bag.  I also had to be careful with weight.  Now neither weight nor quantity is an issue.  I can make the trek to Food Maxx or Dollar General and easily buy 2 bags full of groceries and not have to worry that the groceries might fall out.  Although, I better be careful with pot holes.

The only issue is that when the box is open, it’s close enough to the seat that I’m kind of sitting on it.  It doesn’t make a huge difference to me, but I’m just afraid that I might put too much pressure on it.  I’m sure it would be fine though so I’m not going to worry about that.

The other issue is that I won’t be able to use it at night because it blocks my back light.  I don’t normally go to the store on my bike at night anymore since I had my accident.  I had the accident because it was dark and I didn’t see the thing that I ran over which flipped me off my bike.  Since that happened, if I have to go to the grocery store at night, I walk.  Not having my back light while the box is in use won’t be a real issue because I don’t ride it at night, however, there might be a day that raining and I would normally have the light during the day, but I think that if it is a rainy day, I will just stay at home and wait until it’s not raining, or we can take the car.

I like it and I can’t wait to be able to use it the next time I go grocery shopping on my bike.

Ring Sizer

ring sizer

I have been having fun making keychains and earrings with plastic lacing aka gimp, but I also have fun making bracelets, chokers and rings using hemp.  Before making too many rings, I needed to buy a ring sizer so I knew exactly what size the rings were after I made them.

When making a ring using hemp, you have to measure the gimp on something round, like say your finger or a ring sizer, but I have found that the size you start out with, isn’t always the size you end up with.  Like take the 2 rings in the image above for example.  I started making both of these on the size 12 mark, the thicker hemp ended up being a size 9 and the smaller hemp ended up being a size 9.5.  That’s why I wanted a ring sizer.

These rings are specifically made without anything added, they are plain hemp rings.  I would like to make the rings with beads, but the problem that I am facing is that the seed beads that I bought are too tiny for the hemp to go through.  They are the perfect size on the outside, but their holes are way too small for the hemp.  My purpose for wanting to use beads was so I could make rainbow hemp rings with beads.

I am not sure anyone will want to buy plain hemp rings, but I will list them in every size (after I have made them in every size with both thicknesses of course) and see what happens.  If they sell then they sell, if they don’t then they don’t.  I will keep searching for the right size beads so I can keep trying what I wanted to try in the first place.

The ring sizer mandrel only cost $3 with free shipping from Etsy from DarcusTori.  It was a ridiculously low price with free shipping, but I figure I should take advantage while I still can.  Supplies end up costing me a lot more money than I am getting in profit, so the less expensive everything is, the better it is for me to be able to continue making things that probably won’t sell lol.

Anyway, I want to see about getting some better beads and I will go from there.  I think rings with rainbow colors would look awesome.  I’m thinking that I may still get some use out of the beads that I have by beading them alone.  Of course I will have to find a good pattern for beading now lol.  Ugh so many crafts, so little time.

Bell No-Mor Flats

no more flats

I am starting this blog post over from scratch…

Okay, so I have wanted to buy this for such a long time and I finally bought it at Wal-Mart, my favorite store (that was sarcasm).  They were the only ones who sold them for $20.  I was going to get it on Amazon because of how much I hate going in Wal-Mart, but Amazon wanted $30 plus shipping.  Screw that!  So I bit the bullet and we went to Wal-Mart.

I didn’t try to install it right away because I was still nursing a broken arm.  My arm was all healed up, but it still hurt.  I think I waited a week or week and a half before finally attempting it and it was not easy at all.  I tried soapy water, but that didn’t work because I didn’t drench it with soapy water.  I tried 2 other methods which one didn’t work and the other did, but the tube wasn’t in all the way like it should, and it popped the tire out on both sides.  I had a hell of a time getting the tire back in and scratched the hell out of the rim and even punctured the tire bead where it is supposed to fit into the rim.  Big mistake.  Now if I want to switch to a regular tube I won’t be able to because the tire has metal wires in it that are sticking out, so that will definitely put holes in the tube.  I was thinking about returning the No-Mor flats, but naturally I crumbled up and tossed the receipt that same day and that was weeks ago, so it’s long gone.

I did what I should have done the first time and that was Googling for videos on how to install it.  I didn’t find any videos, but I did find an “Instructable” where the guy was saying how easy it is and gave detailed instructions on how to do it.  My arms were (and still are) too sore to attempt it again, so I put the tube back in it’s box and put the tire and rim in the patio for a few days.  I just attempted it again by soaking the heck out of both the tire and the tube and I am still having trouble getting it in.  It’s just not working for me.  If this was as easy as that guy claims, then perhaps he needs to come install it for me lol.

Well, I have had this bike since 2004 and I think I am ready for a new one.  I’ve sunk so much money into this bicycle and it’s just a real pain in my ass.  It’s… get ready for this… a Wal-Mart bicycle.  Yes, I bought it at Wal-Mart way back when I didn’t know how homophobic they were.  So, I think what I will do is keep the tube and perhaps sell it on ebay or my Etsy page for $15 and call it slightly used, since I basically didn’t really use it, I just tried installing it and it didn’t work, but it’s REALLY clean with all the soapy water I put on it lol.

My birthday is coming up, so I think I want to get a cruiser at Target.  I know, you get what you pay for, yada yada yada…  But Target is a good store and the bicycles are Huffy, and that is a brand I have been familiar with since I was a kid.  I have more faith in Huffy than I do with the bike I have now.  The cruisers are $104 to $139 which isn’t too bad.  Of course I don’t have that much money to spend on well, anything actually, so I will have to set aside half of the money in June and pay for the rest in July.  It will be a late birthday present.

Whoever heard of someone buying their own present?  Screw that, I’m gonna ask for it and see who gets it for me LOL.

If anyone ever asked me if it’s worth it to buy the Bell No-Mor Flats tube, I would simply say NO!  But if you must have one, buy mine LOL.

Cheap Rim Strip

rim strip

So my new Noom shirt came today, and by the way I just love it.  I thought, now is a great time to put my wheel back on my bike so I can stand next to it and take a picture with my Noom shirt on.  I filled up the kitchen sink, grabbed the tube and pumped it up a bit so I could dunk it under water to find out if there is a hole or not so I can fix it.  No holes, great!  I go back out on the patio and find this (image above).  The rim strip snapped.

Naturally, I googled it and found out that bike stores will give you a cheap rim strip that will over time become brittle and break, which is exactly what happened here.  The good news is that I can buy a fabric rim strip which is obviously going to last longer.

I went to Nashbar.com which is where I buy all of my cycling accessories online, but they only have rubber rim strips.  I went to Amazon and they have them really cheap, like $3 cheap.  That’s not too bad.  If they are that cheap on Amazon, I wonder if they will be around the same at the bike store.  I will check and see when I have the money.  I won’t be able to go out until I have a Co2 pump anyway, so I won’t worry about anything until I get my next check.

Happy Halloween

Halloween is one of my favorite times of year.  Not just because you have a legit excuse to eat candy but because it’s a day that you can pretend to be something you aren’t.

I loved Halloween as a kid but my mother was poor, she couldn’t always buy me a costume.  One year she put an old sheet over me with holes in it for the eyes.  It wasn’t a great costume since it was a pink flowered sheet.  I don’t think anyone was convinced I was a ghost lol.

Sometimes she would get her make-up out and dress me up as a hobo.  I would wear my oldest clothes that had holes in them and she would get them dirty and make the holes bigger.  She would put a 5-o’clock shadow on my face and then she would find a stick and tie a bandanna on one end and it would have socks in it to make it look like it had stuff in there.

Some years when she had the money she would buy a costume but I was never given a choice in the matter.  Here is an example:

This is a pretty lame costume but it’s the only Halloween photo I have.  I was the easter bunny for Halloween lol.

The costumes weren’t always this lame though.  Some years I was dressed up as a clown with the clown hair, some years a cowboy and since my parents loved country music, we all had cowboy hats so that costume didn’t cost a dime.  One year my parents bought fatigues for everyone and we were army people.

No matter how good or bad our costumes were, it was fun to go out and be someone else for a few hours.

When we were old enough, when I was 9, we were sent out on our own.  My sister was 11 and she usually baby sat me anyway and it was a bunch of us, my 3 cousins, my sister and I, we would go around the neighborhood trick or treating in the neighboring apartment buildings.

My parents never took our candy away from us and mixed them together, although they did go through them to make sure there were no razor blades and they would toss out all the fruit.  But then we were given the rest in our bag and allowed to eat that as we wanted to, which was usually until we ended up too sick to eat any more.  Then of course when our tummies felt better we would eat more until eventually the candy was gone.  The bags usually lasted a few days.

Just because I’m all grown up doesn’t mean I don’t still enjoy the holiday.  I started carving pumpkins around 1997 with those cool pattern books with the saws and I would carve a few patterns every year.  The last year I carved a pumpkin was in 2007, that’s because Darrin joined a church that doesn’t allow their members to enjoy Halloween and he wouldn’t let me put my pumpkins outside anymore out of fear that he would get kicked out of his church.

My fun was stamped on but I still enjoy Halloween and I will never stop because I feel that my body may be getting old, my mind is still that little child in that bunny costume.

Happy Halloween everyone!  I hope it’s a great one and I hope you don’t get too many cavities from all the candy you are about to consume.

Internet Bully or Internet Coward?

This is not a new trend by any means but it seems that there are a lot of bold people out there. I’m sure in the real world they aren’t as mean but when they get online they can turn into real bastards.

Take for example, this guy named Brock Baker. He is a YouTube sensation and yet people rip on him calling him stupid and saying that he has no talent. Let’s see you do what he does and see how much talent you have. Brock Baker has more talent than any of you pansy a-holes who sit behind the safety of your desk leaving nasty comments.

Brock has turned something negative into something positive because he posts certain negative comments on Facebook and his true fans laugh at the nasty comments. Sometimes his fans go to that YouTubers page and leave nasty comments in return.

That I don’t condone only because they call those people “fags” and that is the only part that does piss me off. That’s not necessary, call him a douche or a dick but don’t call him a fag. You wouldn’t call a person of color the N-word so why call them a fag?

Two rights don’t make a wrong but at least those people aren’t leaving comments incognito.

What I’m referring to is YouSayToo. I have noticed that you don’t have to be logged into the website to leave a comment on someones post. Anyone can comment and those “guests” usually leave nasty comments.

I wrote a post some time in the middle of July called Candwich about a product that hasn’t even hit the market yet which is a sandwich in a can. It’s basically a roll with a packet (like ketchup packets) of peanut butter and a packet of strawberry (or grape) jelly. You squeeze them out and onto the bread then enjoy.

Take a look at all the comments… 3 guests all leaving nasty comments, 1 actual name but no image and that wasn’t a nasty comment.

So it seems to me that if you leave a good comment you are bold enough to sign into the website but when you feel like being a total dick that day you sign out then leave a dickish comment. What’s the deal?

Look, I don’t pay any attention to negative comments on that website. If you are bold enough to leave the nasty comment, be bold enough to actually log in to the website first so I can see who you are.

My response to those douchebags is that peanut butter and jelly are NOT bad for you ok? High fructose corn syrup is not fattening, it’s just liquid sugar made out of corn. We all have it in our diets in 1 way or another so don’t tell me that you would never eat it because I know you have. As Judge Judy says, “don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining.”

The only way you are not getting high fructose corn syrup is if you are a vegetarian who eats only vegetables (not canned) and only water to drink. If you drink soda then you are a hypocrite for leaving those nasty comments because I have news for you. Soda has high fructose corn syrup in it you moron.

You can hide behind your computer saying nasty shit to people with no consequences but let’s see you say it to my face and see what happens.

Necklace for Beth

Well I finally made the jewelry for Beth. I made the bracelet last night and I tried making the necklace last night but I didn’t plan it out right so I had to take it apart. I was in an ambien haze so I had to stop and go to bed because I was messing it up more than it was. I finished it this morning.

I don’t know if it is gift worthy. It looks like something a pre-schooler would make lol. I mean the bracelet is fine but the beads in the necklace didn’t come out as I had planned. They are supposed to be psychedelic but instead they look ridiculous.  They have fingerprints all over them too lol.  I’ve never bought beads with fingerprints on them.  And the holes that I stuck through them for the hemp cord wasn’t straight so some of the beads stick out further.

I need to NOT make any more beads with Polymer clay until I know what I’m doing lol.

I don’t know if I’m too embarrassed by this necklace to even give it to her at all.  Since we didn’t have any money for Toys ‘R’ Us I thought that homemade jewelry would be nice but it’s not as nice after all.  Darrin has a Sears card which works at Kmart so we’re gonna go there to get her a toy or something.

Notice how I’m not so embarrassed that I’m blogging about it with a picture?