A month off, Day 2: Errands and thoughts


There wasn't much time or energy for projects yesterday. The main goal of the day was to go to an exotic pet shop to get bugs to feed the pet spiders, with a grocery trip on the way back.

Normally, we would have rented a car for this, but the rental service called the previous day as the car was in the shop and wouldn't be ready. This happens, but lately there's been much more frustration than utility with the rental service. If it weren't for the disastrous effect it would have on the budget -- to say nothing of the environment -- I'd be thinking of buying a car again. Instead, we took a rideshare to and back from the errands.

Public transit has gotten worse in Minneapolis since 2020, as the city leadership continues to focus on more affluent residents and punishing the poor for the protests. As a result, it's been harder and harder to take public transit to get anywhere with any regularity. Meanwhile, the city heaps tons of money unto law enforcement to continue their now three years of helicopter surveillance (read: noise pollution and privacy violations) in South Minneapolis.

Perhaps I'm just grouchy they woke me up at 4am. Again.

It occurred to me shortly after yesterday's post that my Patreon income for September would just cover the cost of ordering a Rock64, a PoE hat, and the better shipping. While I've never used a Rock64 before, I have enjoyed the other Pine64 products. I've also been increasingly disliking having the Pi 400 in TCHeRI.

The original intention was to have a maintenance terminal available so that I could access the cluster hardware directly. There is still a need for this, but it also feels a little silly for several reasons:

  • There's been little reason for a hard terminal in practice.
  • The Hyperpixel display is always on, drawing power unnecessarily.
  • The passive only cooling is a concern given the 400 is also the management node.
  • Removed, additional room is available in the cluster for other hardware.

Besides, if the Rock64 does work out, I could populate the remainder of the cluster with similar nodes so as to run loads such as an internal NAS.


I skipped my regular workout last night as there was a fair amount of walking involved in the day's errand, and I've been sore and tired for days now. This in of itself is not unusual; often I'll just need a recovery day if I'm doing anything strenuous. Even so, guilt still lingers.

The persistent soreness and joint pain is starting to make me think I'm on the wrong track with my workout anyways. The muscle development has been satisfying, but it hasn't translated to a more pleasing shape. I'm used to being on my bike for 40 minutes at a slow pace but high resistance. This has worked for muscle development but it's been useless for my already poor cadiopulminary system. Past experience suggests low resistance and a more moderate pace might be more effective to improve that.

I haven't decided what to do with my day just yet. It's been really nice re-learning to sleep in and spend the mornings under a cat, but it's not something I can do all day. I've been reluctant to start more domestic tasks such as doing a thorough house cleaning or prepping the yard for winter. I'm sure I'll get to it.

The Voron is the obvious project for today, but I'm reluctant there as well. For reasons I haven't been able to sort out, I can't seem to tram the gantry completely. The frame looks square enough, but something is still off. I'm tempted to order something like a 300mm caliper to check dimensions, but the cost feels prohibitive at the moment.