Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday 2

Umm, the trip to Walmart this morning for a case for my new laptop came up with nothing.  They only had them big enough to carry up to 16 inches, mine is 17.3 inches.  I did buy a large pack of 40S&W practice ammo, though, for Sunday's adventure to Shooter's World and doing some target practice.  Like 100 rounds worth.

The place wasn't empty, but the good deals were basically gone.  Which I expected, especially those 42 inch TV's that you probably won't find at that kind of price - ever again, but who knows.  I didn't buy one last night, I have enough TV's and I have other things I need to do such as finishing the trailer and the $300 it's going to cost to have it moved up north.  Though I can say the most expensive part of the trailer is paid for, albeit I don't have the parts yet: those needed to fix the AC unit on the roof.  Well anyway, Walmart this morning was basically as full as it normally would be.

Fry's Electronics.  I went back there for the carrying case.  I can't not have one for a brand new laptop and I wasn't going to wait.  They had a whole row of the things, found one at a price I liked and............happened to walk past the Verizon Wireless display. I was looking and wondering, hmmmm, should I go ahead and do this now?  I hardly use the Cricket phone at all, that can go bye-bye and that monthly money go to mobile broadband.  Of course, handy-dandy broadband man shows up immediately and asks if he could help me  Well, yes you can.  What is the cost? Same as advertised everywhere: 5 g's for $50 monthly.  Is there a contract? Yes.  Why?  For the service.  That doesn't really help me, I can pay for service on other companies without any contracts.  If it's just the service, then there is no motivation to do anything.  Oh, but you get this nice router.

$299 listed price.  Of course, that price is h ighly inflated of this I have no doubts.  But it is a remarkable little thing.  It's slightly larger than a credit card and maybe half a dime thick if that.  It picks up the signal and sends it to your laptop - and anyone else around you that you are willing to "give" it to - but it has a built in password, which is a good thing.  No-one can just steal the signal.  In other words, this little contraption can serve internet access to multiple devices.

How much if I go over 5 g's in one month?  $10 per g. Same as everywhere, just wanted to be sure I wasn't going to get slapped with some higher fee.  What about credit?  Are you going to run a credit check?  Yes, but it's a "soft" hit and won't affect your credit score.  I'm thinking, my credit isn't all that great.  Well what kind of deposit am I going to have to give if my credit isn't good enough?  Anywhere from $50 to $300. Well, this isn't a phone and I am not about to slap down $300 for a deposit, but I came to the conclusion that I was willing to try and see what happens.

Well, my credit apparently has risen up even higher than I had remembered the last time I looked because it "passed" and I didn't have to put anything down.  It's a done deal.  When the Cricket service runs out, it will not be renewed - but I will call them and cancel it anyway to make sure they aren't going to try and hit me with surprise charges.

Done with that, I came home and was about to go take a nap.  Caleb comes out and asks if I can drop the car insurance for him.  I'm not surprised - work isn't giving him much hours.  Plus having to put fuel in the car, I imagine if I went and checked that car right now, it would be on empty.  I had half a mind yesterday to go fill it up for him knowing his predicament, but I got busy with other stuff and spaced it out.  Short interlude, went up and filled the car up.  Also decided to let it go on the rest of the insurance he owes for this month.  He's thinking he will be able to buy a bicycle and get around like that.  All well and fine, but I have news for him and anyone else that thinks that living in the sprawling expanse that is known as the Phoenix Metro area:  good luck.

I'm going to have to re-think my stance on this issue with the car and who is going to make the insurance payments on it.  I'm a parent who wants his kid around as much as possible.  He's my only kid.  I think it would be good for him to go look for a new job.  He's been working for over a year now and he has good references, I'm thinking maybe another grocery chain might give him more hours if he can get his foot through the door. That's my thinking, not necessarily his.  But if he's going off to college and attempting to work and doing his Muay Thai thing, he's going to need wheels to get around and bicycle wheels are all well and fine, but the distances are too far and the time consumed is also going to be too much.  I don't think he's quite figured that out yet.  He's trying to lose weight, definitely riding a bike is an excellent way to do that, perhaps he could consider riding a bicycle and mixing in the car with it to be able to get to places he needs to be on time.

It is also the first time I have driven the car in quite a while and it is purring like a kitten.  It should be, I have dumped enough money into the thing.  But, I think I will get him a bike for Christmas - he hasn't asked me for one but I am going to offer to get him one anyway - and then we'll sit down and discuss finances.  It's hard to make a budget when your hours are being jacked around like his is.  30 something hours one week, 6 the next.  I don't get that grocery chain doing that to their employees.  It goes back and forth like that.  He's got 6 hours this week, then off 9 days for this trip to Florida.  I have my thoughts about that, but I'll keep that to myself at this point.

So another interlude.  Decided to go out and play in the dirt, doing more of the landscaping project and getting more of that done.  Huge construction project going on just down the street.  A very large, vacant lot that has never been developed?  Is now being developed.  No idea what they are building there.  It's facing a major street so no biggies - but I am not a fan of the constant beeping noise of heavy machinery when it is put into reverse.  Or in the case of many trackhoes/excavators, the beeping goes off no matter what direction it is going in.

Whatever. Unexpected 4-day weekend about half over.  Monday?  Allegedly working out of the main branch - but the semi is at my branch and is partially loaded.  Lol.  Whatever the case, it will be an interesting week at work.  Which is nice that - it's over 2 days away from now, lol.



11/25/2011 Black Friday

So here it is, typing off of my new laptop computer.
Actually, I think it's a notebook.
Unbelievable last night and very thankful for the Plan, without it, this would not have worked.
That's because I opted to go to Fry's Electronics and to send Caleb to Walmart.
Well, the line at Fry's was at least 1,000 people long and stretched all the way around the huge building that it occupies.  Caleb, on the other hand, got in line for the
TV I wanted at Walmart and told me he would go to the computers afterward.
Well he was number 6 in line for the TV's which virtually guaranteed he was getting one of those, then he saw the $19 HP printers sitting almost right next to the TV's, so he hopped in that line, grabbed one of those and then headed for the computer line. 
He called and said the computer line was too long and he might not be able to get one.  I asked him the price, he was in the line for the $200 plus computer, a computer I most definitely did NOT want. I saw that thing on th ads and it is a piece of junk. I told him he was in the wrong line and see if he could find the computers that were in the $300 range.
He calls back several minutes later and said he found the $388 computer and there was no line at all. I figured as much, people were there for the cheap junk as usual,not wanting to spend a bit more for a killer machine. 
Well, I was in another line at Fry's by that point and was undecided.  I could wait in the 300 plus people line for the laptops there and hope for the best  or go with the one Caleb had.  I asked Caleb to read off the things his computer had on it.
What he read off indicated to me that he had the wrong computer again.  The computer he had was the one that was listed at almost $500  on the ad.  Caleb insisted that he had asked several times to be sure that it was the right price.  I couldn't believe it but wasn't there, yet I didn't need to be there.  The one I had wanted was a 15'6" machine, the 17" version was more than I wanted to shell out. 

I asked him to read off the specs again.  No way.  I told him to put the thing into his cart and I got out of the laptop line at Fry's.  I don't know if Walmart screwed up or what, but I would gladly take a better machine at a lower price!  I was elated but still -  a bit suspicious actually.  Well, I bought a "monster" cable from Fry's, hooks the computer up to a TV or other things, those things sold out in 10 minutes at the price they were selling them at and got out of there, headed over to Walmart since Caleb was in a long line to check out.  I got there and my elation did not go away.  It was the almost $500 machine, so I wondered what was going to happen at checkout?

We got up there and the lady rang it up at ............$388!  Oh my gosh!  Sold!!  I got everything I wanted, well almost, there is another sale this morning and I think I am going to run up there, they had a gun case that I need for my 12 gauge on sale this morning and I doubt those are going to disappear too quickly. I might walk around the store and see if there are any remnants of anything else good.  I got out of there much cheaper than I had expected and that was a huge plus as well.  I knew that Black Friday was my biggest opportunity to try and score a good laptop, otherwise I was going to have to elect for something much lessor in terms of quality.  Now if I could only get used to this keyboard...........I am running the thing off of battery power.  It claims 4-1/2 hours of use on one charge.

I'm also going to have to get a carrying case for it, like today, I am not waiting to protect this baby from getting all scratched up and junk, I want to treat it like the machine that it is.  If I get enough energy banged up, I will also go and see if Verizon is going to give me the mobile broadband - without a contract?  I don't want cell service from them, just mobile broadband.  In other words, I am not getting a free phone from them so why should I have to sign a 2 year contract?  I'll find out, I guess.

I got my $98 flat screen TV for the trailer as well.  Haven't even gotten it out of the box yet.  I went to bed at 3am and getting this computer out of the box and getting it up and running was enough for me last night.  This thing came equipped with a DVD burner! 

Well, I am getting up and out of bed and off to the races again, though I expect fewer people there this morning - the great deals were last night - I really don't know.  I am going target shooting with my mom and Caleb on Sunday morning so I need some more .40 cal ammo and that carrying case for the 40 cal Sigma.

I will be writing another entry later on, I am pretty sure of that. I wanted to tak my new computer with me and check out wifi spots - but I don't have my carrying case yet so I will put that on hold.

Happy - Black Friday!


Interesting day. Up early - 4:00, jolted out of deep sleep by the ridiculous phone alarm - annoying as all get out but that's the inten...