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[Q] Bean, my favorite BeanBlog entry no longer appears on this page. What gives?
[A] It has probably been archived.

[Q] I heard you did some drawings. Where can I see them?
[A] I post links to them in my blog entries. You can see a complete directory listing of them here. Also, you can suggest my next drawing subject matter by emailing me your idea.

[Q] How did you make this blog, Bean?
[A] I used the free service available from WebCrimson.

[Q] I love your page, Bean, and I'd like shower praise upon you. How can I do this?
[A] You can email me at or leave a comment or two. will no longer be updated. All future blogs will go to I am switching to blogger because Webcrimson is too unreliable. More deets here.

Weddings, Weddings, Everywhere Weddings
Posted Wednesday, March 31, 2004, 11:05 am, [link to this entry]

Congrats to Mr. and Mrs. JCTMH!

Screenplay 3
Posted Wednesday, March 31, 2004, 10:18 am, [link to this entry]

Corbin trying to sell his vacuum to the door-to-door suplimental insurance salesman:

salesman: Hi, my name is JoeBob Franko, I'd like to talk to you about some supplemental health insurance.
crobine: That sounds like a good idea, I eat alot of chili and tacos and I think I may need a colon transplant soon.
salesman: Yeah, that's what I thought.  Now I'll just need a desposit of $TEXAS and we can get you started.
crobine: Holy Crap!
Salesman: what's wrong?
crobine:  I don't have that kind of scratch laying around, especially since I'm paying for this...wait a second!
salesman: ok, what?
corbin: Here, would you like this candle?
salesman: what?
crorbin:  Can I interest you in a brand new Rainbow brand home cleaning system?
salesman: what?
corbin: yeah, it picks up all kinds of dog hair, taco droppings, etc.
salesman: what does this have to do with insurance?
corbin: now, if you'll just give  the names and numbers of 27 of your closest friends so I can do demos for them, I'll give you this free piece of duct tape.
salesman: you're nuts, I'm outta here
corbin: can I have my candle back now?

Posted Wednesday, March 31, 2004, 8:17 am, [link to this entry]

It seems that a new duck is on the way, and will be here in about 9 months.  Last night, Stef and I found out that she is pregnant.  We have decided to get married before the baby is born.  It should work out pretty good, as we just moved into a new house together anyway.

We agree that this baby is a blessing, not a curse, and we are happy with our plans.  So keep the weekend of September 6th open.  And come, December, be on the lookout for a new baby Duck.  Also, April Fools.

New Drawing
Posted Tuesday, March 30, 2004, 7:34 pm, [link to this entry]

After months of dormancy, I broke out my Wacom Tablet and did a drawing.  It's of Steve Wills walking on my new floor with muddy-ass shoes.

Posted Tuesday, March 30, 2004, 12:15 pm, [link to this entry]

I was looking at pictures of Rushing's wedding and this one caused a doubletake.  At first glance, I though the black woman presiding over the ceremony had some kind of white, gimp arm.

Also, Congrats to the Rushings!

Cold Room, Part 3
Posted Monday, March 29, 2004, 11:09 pm, [link to this entry]

After Steve headed home Friday night, I went ahead and began to insulate the front wall.  First, I hung more r-13 fiberglass in the stud cavities and stapled everything in place.  At this point, I realized that the room was only 1 wall short of being completely enclosed, so I decided to test it out.  I stood a sheet of foamboard up at the entrance and cranked on the AC.  It got down to 50 in a hurry, but then I decided to move on... no need to freeze up my AC just yet.  Next, I put up plywood on the indide of the front wall and glued 2" rigid foamboard to it, again securing it with a few screws.  I filled all of the joints with spray foam and snapped a pic of the inside.  Approximate r-value of the front wall: 26.

Now for some wiring.  My basement didn't come wired very thoroughly, so while Stef's dad (an electritian by trade) was in town Saturday, I had him rum me two new circuits: a dedicated line for the AC and some general purpose outlets for in and around the cold and warm rooms.  The AC outlet faces the warm room interior and two GP outlets are outside.  I also put an outlet inside the cold room so that I can have some lighting if I need it.  Flipped the breakers on and everything looked fine, so I covered the front wall with vapor barrier and called it complete, until the drywalling begins.

For the floor, I laid down some vapor barrier and then stacked two layers of 2" foamboard on top.  I Liquid Nail'd the foam together and then filled around the sides with Great Stuff.  I later cut the Great Stuff flush, caulked the seams with silicon, and dropped a peice of plywood on top to prevent the foam from getting dammaged.  Approximate r-value of the floor: 20.

Stay tuned!

Cold Room, Part 2
Posted Monday, March 29, 2004, 11:07 pm, [link to this entry]

Took a half day Friday and headed to Home Depot at noon.  I would have preferred Lowes, but HD is on the way home.  My buddy Steve met me there to help me round up materials:

  • 4 - 4x8 sheets of 1/4" plywood
  • 3 - 4x8 sheets of 1/2" Foamular rigid foam board (extruded polystyrene, r-3)
  • 3 - 4x8 sheets of 2" Foamular rigid foam board (extruded polystyrene, r-10)
  • 2 - Rolls (80 linear feet each) of paper-backed fiberglass insulation (r-13)
  • 10 - tubes of Liquid Nails (For Foamboard type)
  • 2 - Cans of Great Stuff expanding spray foam
  • 1 - 10' 2x4 (treated)
  • 2 - 10' 2x4s (untreated)
  • 8 - 8' 2x4s (untreated)
  • 2 - Rolls of 4mil vapor barrier (25x10 each)

The total, after my 10% off coupon, was about $240.  I think they forgot to charge me for the plywood, though.  Steve and I loaded up my truck and headed home.  We took everything into the basement and set up a few saw horses.  I gathered the tools we'd need:

  • Battery powered drill
  • Hacksaw blade
  • Circular saw
  • Measuring tape
  • Level
  • Hammer
  • Staple gun

I snapped a few pictures (here, here, and here) of the empty canvas.  We decided to split the warm and cold sides of the closet along the 4th stud from the right.  We'd need easy access to the small warm room, so we removed a stud and put a temporary header in place (I later added a 2x10).

Now, the insulation.

We ripped down the drywall that ran along the stairwell ceiling and filled the space with rolls of r-13 fiberglass insulation.  We stapled them in place and then covered them with vapor barrier and 1/4" plywood.  We then glued 1/2" foamboard to the plywood and secured it with a few screws.  I'll remove the screws in a day or so to reduce the heat-leak along the highly conductive metal.  Approximate r-value of the ceiling: 15.

The back wall that butts up to the exterior wall of the house was next.  It already had some rigid foam board outside the house studs and r-13 rolls in between.  We ripped down the existing vapor barrier and put up a new one.  We ran the new one back along the studs to allow for more fiberglass rolls in the cavity since there were a second set of studs framed for th estairs.  I wanted the vapor barrier as close to the "hot" side of the wall as possible, to reduce the chance of condensation getting into all of the fiberglass and degrading/roting it.  Material on the inside of the vapor barrier will stay dry via the dehumidifier that will be inside the cold room (more on this later).  Before we hung anything nrigid, we wanted to go ahead and frame the divider.

We took measurements and created a simple wall with a hole cut out to fit my air conditioner.  We made the hole about 1" bigger in each dimention to allow us to move things around easily, run cords, pull out the AC, etc.  We also put a small ledge on the back to help support the weight of the AC unit.  After putting the wall in place, we secured it to the existing studs and set the AC unit in to make sure everything looked right.

It looked fine, so we began to insulate the dividing wall and back wall.  Inside the cavity left by the vapor barrier on the back wall, we hung more r-13 fiberglass insulation.  We also stuffed the divider wall with fiberglass and some 2" rigid foam board along the top.  We then covered both walls with 1/4" plywood to provide something to mount the upcoming foamboard to.  Here's a shot of the back plywood up and Steve making some measurements for the next cut.

We glued 2" fomaboard to the divider wall cold side.  I'll be puting a vapor barrier on the hot side once that room is finished.  On the back wall, we only used 1/2" foam, since there was alread quite a bit of insulation in place.  In both cases, we used a few screws to hold the foam in place wile the Liquid Nails set up.  In the end, th eapproximated r-value of the back wall (from cold room to house exterior) was 30 and the divider wall was r-20.

Once we had had everything secured on these walls, we filled the imperfections (gaps) with Great Stuff.  Here's a shot of the AC sitting in the finished divider wall.

Coming soon - Part 3: wiring (and more insulation, of course).

Posted Monday, March 29, 2004, 8:17 am, [link to this entry]

Stef and I spent about 5 hours outside Sunday.  I dug a drainage ditch in the front yard and layed some 4" corregated drain pipe.  Stef planted a set of Iris bulbs.  We both roughed in our garden and built a retaining wall in the low corner, then we filled it with dirt and planted a few things.  The sun was out in full.  I wore a t-shirt.  Stef wore a tanktop.  Bad decision.

Cold Room, Part 1
Posted Wednesday, March 24, 2004, 9:44 pm, [link to this entry]

I want to build a cold room or walk-in fridge in my basement.  Primary purpose: storing and dispensing beer (homebrew and store-bought).  Secondary purpose: Wine storage, fermentation, grain storage, etc.  Other homebrewers have undertaken such tasks before, and have thankfully published detail online.  The followin 3 sites, in particular, have help out quite a bit:

First major decision: where to put it.  This was an easy one since seeing the closet space under my basement steps was what got me thinking about this in the first place.  It's about 3'6" wide, 9' tall, and 10' deep, with a slanted ceiling and one side on the house exterior wall.  Pretty standard.

Next: How to cool it.  I figured I had 2 basic choices: an AC or a chest freezer.  I have used a chest freezer in the past to cool a fermentation box using vented air, but cooling a whole room may be quite another story.  M2 sent me a spreadsheet that helped me calculate the approximate heat load of the room to be 500-600 BTU/hr assuming 40F inside and 65F outside.  Since chest freezers are around 1000 BTU, that means the sucker would have to run over 50% of the time just to keep up, let alone chill anything down.  An AC on the otherhand, is quite a bit more powerfull.  AC it is.

Next: Which AC Unit?  Well, I went to Home Depot and bought the cheapest one they had.  It was $78 and can do 5050 BTU/hr.  Unfortunately, even on it's coldest setting, the air coming out was only 65F.  After some discussions on the duck, I opened it up, bypassed the internal thermostat, and hard wired the compressor "on".  Bingo.  Worked like a charm.  I put the "cold side" of the AC inside a big box and let it run for a few minutes... internal temperature got down to 19F before I shut it off.  BANG!

Next: Where do I mount the AC?  I figured I could either mount it inside the basement, where it would bleed heat and condensation into the house, or through the wall where it would exhause outside.  Outside, I would be off the hook as far as water runoff, but I'd have to knock a hole in my exterior wall.  Also, I'm not sure how well that setup would work in the winter.  If I mount it inside, the condensation and noise are down sides, but the heat is probably a good thing atleast 9 months out of the year, since the basement stays pretty cool. 

Inside seems like the best bet, but how do I minimize noise and handle the runoff?  Well, here's what I came up with:

If I put an insulated divider in my closet and split it into cold and warm sections, I shoudl be able to hide the AC unit in the corner and cover it with an access panel.  I plan on putting a drain tube to remove excess condensation from the AC drip tray and a pair of vents and a fan to exhaust the heat from the hot side of the AC.

So there ya go... the basic design is not too bad.  Next up, I'll need to figure out how to insulate the room and what kind of doors and access panels I need.  Look for "Cold Room, Part 2" next week.  Also, any comments or suggestions would be great.

Posted Monday, March 22, 2004, 8:06 am, [link to this entry]

This past weekend, I sustained 4 injuries to my hands, as outlined below:

  1. While moving my dishwasher, I ran my right pinkey knuckle (middle one) along a metal support brace, cutting two holes in the loose skin that wrinkles up when I extend my pinkey.  Ouch factor: FUCK!
  2. While wiring my living room for surround sound, I was pulling a wire through a cutout in a composite 2x10 and cut a 1/4" gash in the end knuckle of the same hand.  Note that this bled like a mofo.  Ouch factor: FUCK!
  3. While trying to wire for surround sound (the previous day), I rand my right index finger knuckle (middle one) along an exposed edge of ductwork, shaving a few layers of skin off clean.  The skin was still in the duct the following day.  Ouch factor: FUCK, SHIT!
  4. While screwing in the dishwasher mounting braces, I jammed a philips head screwdriver bit into the meat of the tip my left index finger.  Holy crap did that hurt.  Definately a FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK DAMMIT SHIT FUCK!! ouch factor.  Bonus, this one got infected and is swollen today!
Posted Friday, March 19, 2004, 1:29 pm, [link to this entry]

Historically, my "Friday" posts have been full of happiness, excitement, and expectation.  This one, however, is not.  You see, I planned on taking today off.  Around noon yesterday, several items arose at work that "Have to be done by Friday."  I lowered my expectations and decided to try for a half day.  Halfway through today, it became aparent that a 3/4 day was the best I could hope for.  Now, I am going to be lucky if I get a 7/8 day.  Hell, I may even be lookin at overtime.  On a Friday.  Overtime?  Hell nah.  Funk that.

Screenplay 2
Posted Thursday, March 18, 2004, 8:07 am, [link to this entry]

Dooly, giving his LRAD dry-run presentation.

Bossman: So Shawn, how does this thing work?
Dooley: Well, sir, you see right here, I just flip this switch...
Bossman: ...
Dooley: And... well, it was supposed to...
Bossman: Son, what kind of demo is this?
Dooley: was working last night... I don't know...
Bossman: Son, are your eyes bloodshot?
Dooley: ...
Bossman: Have you been smoking the drugs?
Dooley: ...
Bossman: Security, get in here, have this man's vehicle searched.
Dooley: Holy crap.
[10 minutes later]
Secutity: All we found in his vehicle was 15 boxes if IGA fried chicken.
Bossman: No hash needles or pot bongs or opium?
Security: No, sir, just chicken, and some deer bologna.
Bossman: I see.
Dooley: ...bang.

My Favorite SNL Moment
Posted Friday, March 12, 2004, 11:28 am, [link to this entry]

Will Ferrell as Harry Caray, aired 5/17/97:

Harry Caray: Hey! Let me ask, what's your favorite planet?
Jeff Goldblum: Well... I, uh, don't have a favorite. I find them all fascinating. They're all part of a ...
Harry Caray: [interrupting] Mine's the sun. Always has been. I like it because it's like, the King of Planets.
Jeff Goldblum: Well, actually Harry, it's not a planet. It's a star.
Harry Caray: Well, planet or star, when that thing burns out, we're all gonna be dead.
Jeff Goldblum: Well, that's true. But it's not gonna burn out for a very long time.
Harry Caray: [crossing fingers] I hope not. [pause] Hey! Doctor, have you ever seen an eclipse?
Jeff Goldblum: Uh, yeah, I've seen many.
Harry Caray: You know, if you stare at it head on, it'll burn your eyes out.
Jeff Goldblum: [breaking character and smiling] Well, it's best not to stare at the sun during an eclipse.
Harry Caray: But it's hard not to. I once took a pair of binoculars and stared at the sun for over an hour.
Harry Caray: Hey! Now Ken, We all know that the moon is not made of green cheese.
Jeff Goldblum: [cracking up] Yes, that's true, Harry.
Harry Caray: But what if it were made of barbecue spare ribs. Would you eat it then?
Jeff Goldblum: [confused] What?
Harry Caray: I know I would. Heck, I'd have seconds. Then polish it off with a tall, cool Budweiser.
Jeff Goldblum: [blank stare]
Harry Caray: I would do it.
Jeff Goldblum: [just playing along] Yeah.
Harry Caray: Would you?
Jeff Goldblum: [cracking up and looking at the audience] I'm confused.
Harry Caray: It's a simple question, doctor. Would ya eat the moon if it were made of ribs?
Jeff Goldblum: I, uh... I don't... I don't know how to answer that, Harry.
Harry Caray: It's not rocket science. Just say yes and we'll move on.
Harry Caray: Hey! What about this Mad Cow Disease?
Jeff Goldblum: [completely cracking up] What about it?
Harry Caray: Well, it was here for a while, then it went away. Your thoughts?
Jeff Goldblum: Yes, yes, it was in the news for a while and then it disappeared from the news.
Harry Caray: Good point! [pause] Gee, I hope I never get it. [long pause] Hey! What about this? If you could choose between being the top scientist in your field, or getting Mad Cow Disease, what would it be?
Jeff Goldblum: [pretending to think about it] Well, of course I would choose to be the top scientist in my field.
Harry Caray: [grasping his hand] Oh good! I was worried you would choose Mad Cow!

Posted Friday, March 12, 2004, 9:04 am, [link to this entry]

In 3 hours, I am leaving work to go buy a new house.  I'll be rejoining the ranks of so many of my freinds who are homeowners (and by "homeowners", I mean "in debt") after living 3 weeks as a freeloader with no rent or mortgage.  I was lucky enought to be able to move into my parents house while they are in Florida for the winter, which allowed Stef and I to save up enough to put a few dollars down on this new house.  The financing deal I got is pretty good, I think:

  • $9,000 down
  • $5,000 line of home equity credit (at prime rate +2%)
  • $125,900 at 4.99% in a 5/30 ARM.

My builder agreed to pay part of the closing costs and whatnot, so all I am taking to closing today is about $8,500.  All in all, the builder is giving me about $2,000.  The credit line won't begin acruing interest for 6 months, and even then, I am only required to pay the interest each month.  Plus, as I lower my balance, I can charge other home-improvement-type things to the line, thus allowing me to deduct interest.  The 4.99% ARM jumps to prime rate +.5% after 5 years, which is the scarriest part of this closing.  But judging by past history, I'd say it's unlikely that I'll be at this location for more than 5 years.

In related news, here is a screenplay of a conversation I had with the building foreman 2 days ago:

Foreman [walking up basement stair holding a pushbroom]: Oh hi, are you the homeowner?
Me: Yeah.
Foreman: Man, I just got done scrubbing your basement with Pinesol.
Me [sniffing the air]: Yeah, I can smell it.
Foreman: Yeah, it's gonna smell like that for months, I bet.
Me [fake laugh]
Foreman [straining to think of something to say]: Yeah man, you know how the workers piss and shit in the sump during construction... well when we flipped the breaker on today, the sump pump kicked on and started pumping it all out... since the sewer line wasn't hooked up, it just dropped it into the corner of your basement.
Me [thinking: nasty]: Oh.
Foreman: Yeah...
Me: ...
Foreman:  ...
Me: Alright, well, nice to meet you.
Foreman: You too... congratulations.
Me: Thanks.

I've Got an Idea
Posted Wednesday, March 10, 2004, 12:30 pm, [link to this entry]

Spring time is upon us, and Summer is right around the corner.  Us ducks have been discussing our fest options for the upcoming months, raning from trips to Kings Island or Cedar Point to campouts and barn-raising parties at the BarBigD ranch.  It got me thinking... what kind of gathering could I have once I am moved into my new place?  Then, a light shown down for the heavens and an idea sprouted in my mind. 

Regular readers will remember my recent post about the Polar Bear Plunge that I participated in.  I thought it was fun, and would like to do it again... but why do it in the winter?  I mean, shit, who wants to get out of cold water only to be greeted by even colder air?  Not me, that's who.  As the wheels churned in my mind a little more, it hit me: a polar bear plunge in the summer, specifically, the 2004 SummerDuck Plunge.

The gathering will center around the Plunge Pond.  The Plunge Pond will be 4' wide by 6' long and about 5' deep.  I'll fill it with tap water at (I am assuming) 55 degrees.  This is about 898 gallons of water.  I probably won't fill it all the way up, we'll go with 85%, which leaves us with 763 gallons.  Now, cooling aside, that's a lot of effin water, and building something to contain it will be no small task.  I have a design drawn up that is based on the old Lambda Chi Pig Pond.  It'll be beefed up, obviously, but the "tarp-on-wood" concept will be at the core.

As for temperature... I'd like to get the water down to about 40 degrees.  This should be cold enought to make a dip in the water a memorable experience.  Using some online tools ( and, I arrived at the fact that it would take about .83 pounds of ice per gallon of water to cool from 55 to 40 degrees F.  This means I'll need approximately 633 pounds of ice, or about 76 frozen 1-gallon milk jugs.  I can easily store 30-40 (we'll say 30 for now) gallons of ice in my chest freezer, leaving me 46 gallons, or 384 pounds short.  The running rate on 25-pound bags of ice is $2.99, I believe, which means I'll have to shell out about $61 for the additional ice... not to bad.  Unfortunately, this is only the ice required to get the water to 40 degrees... I have no idea how hard it will be to keep it there.

Note that adding 76 gallons of ice to the existing 763 gallons of water puts the total volume at about 95% the capacity of the pond.  Knowing this, I may downsize the initial amount of water (and required ice)... but to stay on the safe size, I'll stick with my initial calculations.

The Plunge Pond will reside on my back patio, on a level slab, conveniently located next to a 6' high retaining wall to facilitate entry.  As for exit, well, I guess I'll just play that by ear.

In addition to the Plunge Pond, there will also be standard party type activities... pong, poker, grilling, drinking, etc.  I should have my cold-room (a blog for another day) finished and serving draft homebrew and domestics.  Also planned: a slip-n-slide.  My back yard will have a slight slope, perfect for drunken-slip-n-slidin' ($10 says we see a naked butt-slide from JCTMH).

So there you have it... no date set just yet (open for suggestions), but I hope that I can generate enough interest to make it all worth while.  I'll probably get some shirts printed up for it if I can get 15 or more people comitted.  Leave me some feedback... let me know what you think.

Birfday Number 27
Posted Friday, March 5, 2004, 2:47 pm, [link to this entry]

I mentioned my birthday a few blogs back and have been harassed nonstop ever since to blog a blog about it.  Caleb took some pictures and forwarded me a few of them.  Rather than try to explain all of the events of the night (very few of which I can recall) and annotate with pictures (none of which I remember being taken), I will instead post the following picture for examination:

My comments:

  1. Nobody in this picture is making a "normal" facial expression.
  2. John (in the background) is either exhaling smoke or whistlin' Dixie.
  3. The sound I bet Terri (in the background) is making: "BANG!"
  4. Dear Chad, WTF?  Love, Bean.

Please, add your own.

Screenplay 1
Posted Thursday, March 4, 2004, 3:13 pm, [link to this entry]

Every so ofton, a duck mail comes through in screenplay format.  I have decided to post these rare treats as they occur.  I hope you enjoy them as much as me.

Corbin: [click play on paris hilton video]
Stacey: What are you doing?
Corbin: Ehh, nothing.  How about some taco salad
Stacey: You know i don't cook that stuff
Corbin: [covering up video] Well, why not go and sweep
Stacey: But it was your idea to buy that stupid vacuum cleaner!
Corbin: God damnit woman, get out of my vector space
Stacey: [leaves]
Corbin: Ahh, now for my precious

The Plunge
Posted Tuesday, March 2, 2004, 9:20 am, [link to this entry]

I took the Plunge.  That's right, the Polar Bear Plunge.  Saturday afternoon, before heading out for a night of birthday party shenanigans, Stefanie and I jumped off of the warf at Joes Crab Shack into the 38 degree Ohio River.

The 2004 SOKY Polar Bear Plunge was a benefit for the Special Olympics of Kentucky... Stef and I raiesed $111 combined and earned the right to throw our bodies into thermal shock in front of a crowd of onlookers.  There were about 700 jumpers total, and probably a few thousand spectators.  Every jumper got properly introduced to the crowd before plunging.  It went something like this:

Announcer: "Here's Ben Schy and Stefanie McClain from New Albany, they raised $111 dollars and decided to do this because it sounded like a good idea at the time.  Does it still seem like a good idea guys?"
Stef: "No."
Announcer: "Okay... read to go?  One, two, three!"
Me (underwater, thinking): "FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK!"

Needless to say, it was much colder than I was expecting.  Now, I like the cold, but this was really darn cold.  I did a classic cannon bean, and the second my scantily clad body hit the nasty Ohio River water, my brain became scrambled.  I popped up, looked around, and spotted a volunteer who was waving me his way.  As I tried to swim to him, I realized that I could barely move.  I eventually made it to the ladder, but had trouble getting my foot up on the rung... none of my joints wanted to bend.  There were several volunteers shouting at me by this time, telling me to step up with my left foot, grab their hand with my right hand and step up and out to the right.  After a few seconds, I was able to comply and get out.  Once out, the shock faded quickly (it was a nice day).  Stef and I dried off and immediately drove home and took showers.  The Ohio river water stinksted.

Good times.

Want more? Look in the archives for older entries.


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