Time to pay the end-of-month bills, or at least the ones that get paid on physical paper. Cellphone bill is due before the actual end of the month, so today is When.
...Wait. Where's the cellphone bill? Should be stacked on top of the mortgage statement, 'cause it's due a couple of days earlier. Not there. Will I have to go into one of the storefronts to pay?
Check e-mail archive for phone-related things. Find notification of bill. There's a pay-on-line option: good. Needs a password: maybe not good; I don't remember it. Go for a password reset: your number is not signed up for MyVerizon. Sign up: your number is already signed up for MyVerizon. Back to the password reset; select the option to have the message sent to my e-mail. Wait. Wait some more. Write a check to the mortgage company. Surf the net.
Verizon doesn't in fact appear to be sending me an e-mail with the temporary password, or whatever it's supposed to be. Gotta run some errands soon; if there's still no e-mail from Verizon by the time I'll get back, I'll try the SMS option. Or maybe try a couple of different passwords.
Oh, and also for the Murphy file: the little portable electric heater croaked yesterday (fan bearings wore out, and it was designed for non-repairability). At least it waited until after I fixed the furnace. I've ordered a replacement from Amazon, for delivery today, Just In Case.
Did I mention the cold is still hanging on?
But at least I don't have my entire on-line presence hosted in a datacenter that had a failure cascade Monday afternoon and still isn't back together; those people are having a really bad week.
Hm. Cellphone bill didn't show up in the mail. Was that about the same time a check didn't show up in the mail? I gotta make inquiries; could be the check was sent in a timely fashion, then got lost.
Update: Kitty fountain was in need of cleaning; getting kinda yucky, and making bubbles-through-pump noises. Disconnected it from its power source. Cleaned it. Refilled it. Re-applied power. Topped up water. Um... now it's not making any noise at all? And there's no water circulation going on? Grrr...
Cats growl; there's a mailbox sound outside. Check mail. Hey, that check I mentioned in the small print up there finally arrived!
Back to the water fountain, with a voltmeter. Its 12V wall wart is putting out 0V. Um, wait: AC. OK, 16V AC. That's not the problem. Pump looks like ~ 20Ω, at DC. Is this right? What's the inductance? It sure shouldn't be 20Ω @ 60Hz; that'd draw way too much current.
Dismount pump. Ponder. Ah, the end cap of the wet end pries off easily. Then the upper pump housing pries off. The rotor is held in place by magnetism (clever design, there; the potted end must just be the stator and probably a run cap). Clean out the accumulated ick. Apply power: the impeller spins. Put it back together, and re-install in fountain: we have water flow!
Product idea: Handheld AC test meter, suitable for checking things that ought to be reactive loads at 60Hz to a few KHz. Maybe report DC resistance, and complex impedance at the selected frequency? Not sure how useful that would be on a non-spinning motor, though, and having a handheld unit put out enough power to spin up a (random) motor is maybe not so practical. OK, so maybe it's a dumb product idea; I have enough of those.
Time to go run those errands now. Right after a big dose of cough syrup. Hey, kids! Did you know dextromethorphan is a hallucinogen? What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Update 2: Errands completed; the giant lizards couldn't stop me! Bought a few bags of bird stuffing for Tinga. And more pseudoephedrine. And some assorted supplies. Amazing how crowded Trader Joe's can get, the day before Thanksgiving. Indian grocery store was also packed. Do Pilgrims like curry? (Sings.)
Ended up paying the cellphone bill on-line, after trying the password reset again only this time using SMS.
The heater I'd ordered from Amazon showed up not too long after lunch hour. It works.
Not making it to any family festivities, though. Gotta rest. Morning errands were rather more than I should have taken on, and anything further that might involve talking is Right Out.