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Posts posted by utilitus

  1. 34 minutes ago, Natasha said:

    rats don't eat insects, nor live plants!   but they'll "homestead" wherever they get the chance, and do their food searches elsewhere

    Thanks for the input.  Some sources indicate that some species of rats enjoy fruit and insects, though the only published material referencing (using the local collective noun) a rodent 'plague' Lakeside I came across describes an infestation last November around poorly managed garbage in Joco, which sounds like the classic case.

  2. Got a cryptic email from a neighbor on the hill in SJC suggesting that my undeveloped lot was hosting rats (just wait 'till I move in...).  If this is true, the only possible food sources would seem to be animal or vegetable. Is there a 'plague' of delicious insects currently in progress?   In the later category, the only candidates would be grasses and the two meter tall specimen shown below, which does seem to produce fruit of some sort.  Can anyone please comment on these factors? TIA!



  3. On 7/26/2022 at 7:37 AM, chapalence said:

    I will mention, when I say "pump" I mean they use pressurized equipment to force the poison far down and throughout the soil.

    This treatment is for termites, not ants. 

    Our ranch east of Napa has shown evidence of tunneling termites about every decade.  The last time it happened several years ago, there was some talk about using a convenient 'baiting system'.  Check it out (without recommendation):  https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef639#:~:text=The bait station housing is,other termites to the station.

  4. Hopefully, such vendors aren't expecting any "dangling"...

    I've seen one or two 'store-bought' domestic elevators Lakeside - looked like miniature versions of the cars in the Embarcadero Hyatt in SF.  I always waste volumes of time researching ideas and options to death, including in this case browsing the vast industrial production of the PRC via Alibaba (and "I get ALL my knock-off Moncler items from AliExpress!").  Youtube captures a number of 'hlilbilly Hilton' elevator projects.

  5. 11 hours ago, Lou Quillio said:

    "I'll be back..." - LQ

    Please do report back - I'm trying to find an engineer to help design a new house featuring among other gizmos a small exterior wall mounted passenger elevator to a rooftop garden, and any frame of reference provided by an actual thoughtful design and installation would be very interesting.

  6. As to livability or SJC property values, I don't know authoritatively, but I get a good impression after several visits.  I've had a small lot on Cutzalan (off Dominguillo) well up the hill for about five years and nice middle-class homes have sprouted up all around it (maybe 50% gringo), to the point where I'm waiting to build to verify that a splendid view will survive such development (looks likely because it's so steep).  Other, larger Racquet Club style houses are sprouting up a hundred meters away, and you may enjoy one of them. Note that there are no supermarkets in the area AFAIK, though I think I heard a rumor that there was such in Joco - closer and less traffic than points east.

  7. 10 hours ago, rafterbr said:

    I had my teeth whitened at Dental Express.  The woman doing it used so much force covering my gums she cracked a crown and I had to get a new one.  

    A computer-sculpted molar crown installed at Dental Express a few years ago failed, which in turn led to an infection only discernable by X-ray, necessitating an extraction.  In the process, the dentist also broke an adjacent crown.  I will never go back, and am of the opinion that DE specializes in English and marketing.

  8. Thanks, LQ - my recent cursory research into alternative ISPs for our ranch in a tight little valley in the wilds east of Napa revealed that further to the  northeast about 40km, there were two SL ground arrays within about 20km of each other - the only 'twin' installation displayed by the tracker app.  I imagined that this was great, until just now when tracing their activity, it appears that due to the sparse  geometry of the orbits (over the north Pacific?), two such sites were required, and there are still periods when no transmission is indicated.  Good to know.  Thanks again.

  9. Better still would be to take a few days or more prior to installation to go online and study up on FO cable placement (determined in part by type, bending radius, color, local regulations, etc.)  Then experiment with layouts using masking tape and a tape measure to reveal problems and opportunities, length of cable required, and importantly, how to safely penetrate the housing structure if required.  This planning can cover both inside and outside, and induce the owner to tidy up their cable plant in advance, and perhaps move furniture as well.  The installers can then review and comment on the proposed layout and proceed promptly, and the owner can ask them for general advice and about local issues and who to call for effective help while proffering a reasonable tip.

  10. 3 minutes ago, bmh said:

    In France  you have to occupy a property against the owner s will to have the right on the land.. here not sure what it is .

    Don't know about the Code Napoleon, but in both the US and Mexico they seem to apply the principle of 'adverse possession', which comes in a few different flavors.  Call it 'Ejidos Revenge' when the squatters evicted are gringos in Baja...

    There is an entry for 'squatting in Mexico'; historically it seems significant and worth clearing up.  See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squatting_in_Mexico

  11. 3 minutes ago, mudgirl said:

    Absentee property ownership isn't a great idea in Mexico. They have some squatter's rights laws. But I wish you luck.

    Right - cursory research indicates it may be an issue after 4-5 years.  Years ago in Costa Rica everybody felt the legal need to install a caretaker, at least on built properties.  

    What I think I'll do is have this guy eliminate the physical danger of two stories and at his expense give him the chance to have drafted and sign appropriate waivers (which he won't want to do).  If he is unreasonable, as I warned him on principle years before he built his place, I will design what I called a San Miguel Allende cube to the property line in all directions, occluding one of his views.  I also have a couple of those handy-dandy battery powered chainsaws which would probably have to go into expensive stowed luggage on Volaris...   Thanks.

    • Haha 1
  12. A Mexican family built a nice but not huge new house in a nice new neighborhood in the hills of SJC, which borders my similar lot.  The husband of this seemingly nice youngish family of 5 or 6 is occasionally mentioned favorably in his professional capacity on this web board, and that's nice, too.  Working from recent photographs sourced from Google and images from real estate ads for other local properties (as I monitor the development of the viewshed), it appears somebody has built smallish palapa structures on my neighbors' roof and on my property, adjacent to the neighbors' homes' wall, the later seemingly reaching two stories tall. 

    This neighbor had used my adjacent property as a staging area for the construction of his house about two years ago without permission, (and possibly without any clean-up), and several months ago shot off a few odd emails to me here in California asking about selling the property and after that was precluded, asked when I might build. (Strangely, given his line of work, his English is a as bad as my Spanish, and clear and candid discussion is called for, as follows.) There hasn't been any communication since.

    So here I'm appealing for any brief, culturally sensitive advice as to how to proceed anyone would care to offer - I wish this family well, but on the basis of liability alone, something has to be done.



  13. On 2/7/2019 at 5:14 AM, Aquaponicsman said:

    " I need two desktop computers running 24 hours a day, 7 days per week."


    I run a network of two or three maxed out laptops driving 55 inch HDTVs 24/7, pulling in at least two HD streams and several live financial accounts.  After building my own PCs going back to x286, several years ago it became obvious that laptops had evolved their integration and features to the point where, apart from maybe gaming and 'crypto' mining, they provided a superbly energy efficient and convenient platform, other than running hot if one neglects to refresh their thermal paste every few years. My energy bill is very modest here in the redwoods of northern California, where metal corrosion is a recurrent problem that laptops seem to avoid. Just my take. 

  14. I don't know the Spanish for 'mirabile dictu', but a (probably new) predial payment website for Joco seems to work, retrieving my record and progressing to the payment page.

    The site is https://pagos.jocotepec.gob.mx/predial , but before I start the payment process, I'll solicit your good advice on two points in particular:

    - the 'payment' button is labeled "Pagar Adeudo" - when I pop it, what is likely to happen?  Will my US credit card do the trick?, and...

    - the amount of the tax indicated online has more than doubled relative to my last (physical) receipt (dated February, 2020), but I assume this is because I wasn't Lakeside last year and owe for both '21 and '22.  So the automated system seems to take that into consideration, but without providing any accounting detail, other than the current early payment "descuento"...

    Any brief comments would be appreciated.  Thanks.

  15. 4 hours ago, NLU said:

    I have Obitalk for my Google Voice...

    May I ask, briefly, does Obihai (mine is v. 2.0) registered with Google Voice work with a long established GV number in no other way involving the US?  In other words, does it work lakeside as if it was in California?  Thanks!

  16. Scientific American published an article in 2017 entitled, 'Scientists Solve a Dengue Mystery: Why Second Infection Is Worse Than First'

    It concludes, in part, that "...findings also underscore the need to use dengue vaccines carefully. A study ...suggested that the vaccine should be targeted to children who have already had at least one bout of dengue...."

    See: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/scientists-solve-a-dengue-mystery-why-second-infection-is-worse-than-first/

    See also: https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/askst-dengue-reinfection-dangerous-when-it-is-from-a-different-serotype

  17. RE: "try to give reasons why markets behave the way they do "

    There are different kinds of 'causation'. 'Financial repression' is government manipulation at its' extreme - but it goes way beyond real-time market manipulation, per se.  And as Keynes noted in his famous 'beauty contest' metaphor, sophisticated market players, human, institutional and/or AI, position themselves relative to the other market players, not some absolute of value. (The value of money in capitalism is its' potential for making more money.) 

    Anything, including mistaken rumors, can and do move forex markets almost instantaneously.  I observed yesterdays and this mornings' shenanigans firsthand, in real time, as an abstracted stimulus-response model, and use the forex markets as a currency hedge just because such financialized hair-trigger mechanisms as modern markets are not predictable, rational, or authentic.  Cynicism is an absolutely appropriate overall attitude (especially towards late 'capitalism'), but it doesn't provide granular explanations for a wide and important spectrum of phenomena which we are condemned to experience, unless you want to nail 'cynicism' it like a little sign to the helical cross of 'selfish genes'.  

    • Like 1
  18. 1 hour ago, Mainecoons said:

    Expectation of rising interest rates.


    Plus coordinated release of several national 'strategic petroleum reserves' (50mbl for the US just announced), plus thematic problems of EM banking as the USD gains value into next year (especially vs LatAm, except Brazil, according to TD Bank analyst just on Bloomberg).  Turkey (which ironically imports all its' energy) experienced a 13% exchange rate crash this morning due to moronic political leadership, maybe additionally fouling the EM forex pond, just thematically.

    There is great controversy as to the nature of Fed rates - it will almost certainly not track realized inflation due to the unpayable scale of the modes of US debt.  'Financial repression' is the future of the USD, along with the devaluation that should entail, though other countries may try to competitively match it.  

    By the way, recently stumbled on statistics indicating that Mexico's oil reserves are probably the shortest-lived among recognized producers.  What then - maquiladoras replacing Chinese solar hardware production - or will the US and others go aggressively robotic?  

    • Like 1
  19. An excellent dentist (in either Thailand or Costa Rica - can't recall) once explained that restorations definitely should be floss-able.  I just did a little research, and that seems to be the case.   When I was in grad school, I had some work done at the UCSF dental clinic and they took great pains ;) to engineer what they considered 'ideal' contact margins.

    Interestingly, my search just now found seemingly responsible articles (some from the UK!) discussing research questioning the value of flossing.  


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