Making A Pallet into Planter Boxes Freestyle

I guess you could say that this all started with Hurricane Irma.

We made it through fine.  The folks elsewhere had much more to deal with than we did here, because, we had been planning for it since we moved here in 2006.

However, we did learn in the two weeks power was out that we needed to upgrade our generator.

That generator has arrived and came on a pallet.

If you ever got something that came on a pallet, you also know that the pallets tend to stick around for a while.  If you don’t use the wood up, you have to chop it up and find a way to toss it out.

Being the creative type, I also know that the pallets are a great source of wood for projects.  Some are quite elaborate, some simple.

This Project Can Be Completed In An Hour.

Ok, so Caveat – you need tools.  I used a battery powered Sawsall and a battery powered screwdriver.

I did say we were prepared. Those tools were rescued from people who don’t realize that you can both replace the battery pack and you can retro fit the packs with fresh batteries.  So thanks to whoever it was that left them outside with a sign saying “Free to a good home” because yeah, I can fix that.

That pallet pictured is marked off where I cut the thing apart.  With 12 cuts into the wood itself, plus some extra cuts between the slats to remove them from the base, the whole thing was in pieces in about 15 minutes.

Then I took a few pictures to show my handywork.  The thing is that with the right tools, this is trivial.  The Sawsall is like an electrically powered hack saw that is a must have for a homeowner.  I used mine the other day to take down 7 palm trees in the yard, and while there are at least a dozen more that need to go, the tool is great for the job.

I’m still on the “first charge” of the battery pack after downing the trees and cutting up this pallet.

You will notice that I am not giving dimensions to this project, either.  Pallet wood is never very good.  Mine was brittle, and the pieces were there to hold a generator steady, not to be pretty for use in furniture or planter boxes.  The cuts have to be made as a Judgement Call.  You have to figure out for yourself where the cuts go.  You also have to determine for yourself whether you want to use a somewhat dangerous tool to cut through the nails that hold it all together – Standard Internet Warning Applies – Do This At Your Own Risk and Take Precautions to Keep Yourself Safe.

Or get Mommy or Daddy to do it.  I’m not taking responsibility for any damage or injury, you’re an adult, figure out the tool use.

Ok, so I sound like your big brother.  I am someone’s big brother, and my kid sister will tell you that I have my own way of teaching.

Boy did I open myself up there….

So once the rough cuts are done, you need pieces to reassemble these boxes into the end

result.  The pallets are made with a semi-solid deck on one side, and three support beams in the bottom.  Those three support beams are where the cuts happen.  They are also going to be the easiest place to make your cuts since you already have four out of six sides of a box assembled for you.

Take some of the extra wood from the scattered pieces, and nail them in place.  The scattered pieces were in differing levels of usability – some were split before I got to them, others were quite solid and could be screwed into the thing to serve as a base.

I used the electric screwdriver and some “Drywall Screws” and it was done in short order.  Be sure to use enough screws to hold the boxes together.  I used two on each end of the plank, and two in the middle.

From what I can see, the only thing that will take these apart will be time, water, and termites.  They’re sturdy enough to hold my weight, although you may not have that luck depending on wood, weight, and other variables.  In fact, forget I said it.  They don’t have to be tested that thoroughly, don’t go standing on it.

(Standard internet warning applies – blahblahblah don’t hurt yourself blahblahblah)

At any rate, the only other oddball thing I have been considering was to line these with some landscaper’s cloth to hold soil in place while the boxes are hung on my fence in the yard.  That is not strictly necessary since I’m also considering using one or more of these to hold orchids.

You can also paint them if you desire, but I’m leaving them “wood” colored because my fence is rather “wood” colored as well.

But yes, I got these boxes done in under an hour.  Electric tools help.  Using a rip saw and #2 Phillips Screwdriver by hand would make this a rather painful process.   As is my right thumb got a blister from the Sawsall vibrations and I felt it the next day.

Just be careful.  I’d like you to visit again some day without thinking this fool gave me an idea that I did and I broke a nail or something else doing.

 

Hey, tools can be fun, but they can be dangerous.

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During an Italian meal… You pasta sauce around the table.

Wholesale supermarket

So, the other day my wife texted me, said we were having salad for dinner, and asked me to grab a head of lettuce on my way home from work.

I said OK and decide to try the new discount supermarket that opened right off the highway.

When I get in, it’s clear that this place specializes in wholesale: there are giant boxes of things everywhere.

I didn’t need more than a head of lettuce though, so I grab one out of a box and head up to the front.

The cashier looks at the lettuce, looks at me, and says, “I’m sorry, sir, but I can’t sell you that.”

“Why not?”

“Well, sir, we only sell the entire box. You can go back and get the entire box and buy that or you need to return the lettuce.”

“That’s ridiculous!” I say, “There must be over a hundred heads in each of those boxes.”

“That’s right, sir. There’s one hundred and forty-four.”

“You mean you have to buy one hundred and forty-four heads of lettuce?? That’s absurd! Who would need that much!” I was so upset at that point that I just left the lettuce with the cashier. I looked her straight in the eye and said, “This is the worst supermarket I’ve ever seen.”

She shakes her head and answers, “You have us all wrong. We’re not a supermarket, we’re a gross-ery store.”

What do you call a baby frog? A toadler.

I described this first one to a good friend as one that would get a room full of Second Graders laughing loudly.

See if you agree:

 

A frog walks into a bank.

The frog walks up to the teller and sees her name tag witch says Patricia Wack and the frog says “my name is Kermit Jagger, son of Mick Jagger, i need a loan to go on a holiday, how about $3000?”

The teller says “woah, thats alot of money, do you have any collaterals we can keep if you don’t pay us back?”

The frog says “sure” and pulls out a small pink porcelain elephant and asks “will this do?”

The teller says “let me go ask my manager” so she goes to her boss and shows him the little elephant and says “a frog wants a loan with this as the collateral, i mean, what even is this”

And the boss says “it’s a nick-nack patty wack give that frog a loan, his old man’s a rolling stone”

 

 

And since that was a little short…

 

 

Meat on the roof
A man walks into a bar and immediately sees lots of meat hanging from the roof and precedes to query the bartender.

“What’s with all the meat on the roof?!” the man questions.

The bartender replies, “We have a competition. You can try to jump up and touch the meat; if you touch it, you get all your drinks paid for all night, but if you miss, you have to pay for everyone’s drinks all night. Would you like to have a go?”

The man looks up as he ponders and states, “no, I think the steaks are too high.”

What you have to do to mail a letter these days.

Funny what passes through what I call my mind when I am reading a joke. I started to free-associate with changes and modern life and technology and I’m laughing at myself because while technology is easy for me, Printing is not.

I’ll be making up a nice new sign for the Jeep to tell people that there is nothing of value in the car and it’s not for sale, and to beg them to leave it alone.

In two languages! With Pictures! In glorious Grey Scale and Black And White!

But yes, I did end up with a Robin Williams Style Rant here. Hang on for a ride. There’s a Bounce-Bar by your knees if you need to hold on.

Anyway, I suspect that this joke way below is one of those “older” offices. Having a lot of paper around the place seems to be a bit anachronistic. While I personally “need” to be “able” to print, I think I am on the same ream of paper that we got for the house back in 2010 and I still have “Special Resume Grade Paper” from the 90s. You know, the good heavy weight stuff that isn’t pure white so it sticks out in a crowd.

Remember having to mail a resume?

Remember actually writing a Pen Pal?

I write maybe four actual letters per year. They get dropped into a box to go along with some “goodies” that I send off in a care package explaining what crap I have loaded into the thing.

In order to get ink to physical piece of paper, I had to have a printer.

Since “technology” happens, I had to have a server for that printer so I could print from any computer on my network.

Install an operating system, a version of Debian Linux, Of course.

Get it working to print something out. Share that printer across the network. Start up Libre Office because I refuse to run anything Microsoft if I can avoid both it and the spyware that they insist in putting in their software. Write the letter and save it.

 

All that? Took about a week of thrashing because there was some weird inconsistency between Raspbian on ARM and a pure Debian on X86 that I am used to…

So now to print, turn on the RaspberryPi, wait for it to boot in about 2 minutes, then turn on the printer. Rush back to the laptop and tell it to print to the printer “Tucked in a corner of Bill’s Desk Somewhere”.

Yes, I called it that.

I had to get a physical piece of paper to my financial advisor a while back and I ended up having them send me the form to sign so that I could physically carry the thing to the Post Office that is two miles away.

Get into the Jeep, hope it starts because I simply don’t drive that often.

Look around as I drive the car like a puppy out the window. Oooh! look! Moving Things! Shiny Objects! Other People!

 

Drive out into traffic and get confused by which lane to choose when at that bizarre five way intersection that everyone knows here as Five Points.

 

I truly hate driving through Five Points. It’s generally done with a horn or an extended gesture that is caused by some damn tourist using the wrong lanes or forgetting to get the hell off the phone because the light changed.

 

Then I am invisible because nobody actually follows the Uniform Vehicle Code any more and am trying to jockey for the Curb Lane because I am only going a mile which involves two stop lights on Dixie Highway, crossing a major rail corridor, and who knows what other shiny objects might be hanging out at the next intersection.

I prefer to walk.

Stand in line and hand it to the people at the Oakland Park, FL Post Office. Truly nice people there. Sure, it looks like a throwback to the early 1970s and probably has not been painted since then, but I end up with a smile on my face, even if I do have to stand in line.

 

After it gets there, lather, rinse, repeat and go home. I’ll take the back roads, I’ll need a sedative if I have to go through Five Points twice in one day!

Beep Beep! I’m a Jeep!

Careful, Nervous Driver On Board!

 

As Carl Sagan said “To make a cake, you first have to invent the universe”.

 

Anyway, all of this rant was triggered by this joke I promised you below.

 

A young manager was finishing up late at work

When he was leaving there was only one other person in the office.

He noticed it was the owner of the company standing by a Shredder with a sheet of paper looking confused.
He approached him and asked if he was alright.

The owner said “my secretary has gone home and she always does these things for me”, and asked “do you know how to work this machine”.
The manager said “yes”, turned on the Shredder and stuck the sheet in and said “all done”.
The owner said “brilliant, now I need three more copies.”

 

 

Ok I guess you had to be there!

Why do seagulls live by the sea? Because if they lived by the bay they’d be bagels.

That title is a one liner I found somewhere but it reminds me of a business meeting I had with a client in NYC.

This rather intelligent woman I worked with had a comment that everyone took as a mental lapse, but weirdly it has stuck with me over the years. So I will share this ear-worm of a story with you.  Maybe you can figure out that mental process.

We were sitting at a window with a great view of the bridges leading over to Brooklyn when she piped up about her meal.

“You know!  I can tell these are Sea Scallops!

These are from the sea and the sea is big!

The Bay Scallops are from the bay and the bay is small!”

The table looked around at each other for a solid Ten Count and then the conversation just started over.  She never really followed it up with any further explanation, just sat there and looked proud of it.

As silly as that sounds, yes, that is how I remember sizes of Scallops – not that I tend to get them since they’re so expensive.

Sweet lady, I guess you had to be there!

 

 

Three tortoises go on a picnic…

Three tortoises, Mick, Alan and Les, decide to go on a picnic.

So Mick packs the picnic basket with beer and sandwiches.
The trouble is the picnic site is ten miles away so it takes them ten days to get there.

When they get there Mick unpacks the food and beer. “Ok Les Give me the bottle opener.”
“I didn’t bring it,” says Les. “I thought you packed it.”
Mick gets worried, He turns to Alan, “Did you bring the bottle opener??”

Naturally Alan didn’t bring it. So they’re stuck ten miles from Home without a bottle opener.
Mick and Alan beg Les to go back for It, but he refuses as he says they will eat all the sandwiches.

After two hours, and after they have sworn on their tortoise Lives that they will not eat the sandwiches, he finally agrees.

So Les sets off down the road at a steady pace.
Twenty days pass and he still isn’t back and Mick and Alan are starving, but a promise is a promise.

Another five days and he still isn’t back, but a promise is a promise.

Finally they can’t take it any longer so they take out a Sandwich each, and just as they are about to eat it, Les pops up from behind a rock and shouts……..
“I KNEW IT!……I’M NOT GOING!”

Have you heard about the submarine industry? It’s really taking a dive..

English can be a very imprecise language.  When talking with someone, if you describe an object, you can specify exactly what you are talking about by using very descriptive words like its name and colors and position, or it is equally as valid to use a word like “That”.

If you use “That” frequently in such a situation… I hate you.

 

A factory burned in a fire

One of the survivors, a worker from the factory, goes home to his wife “Honey, there was a fire, the factory burned down and many of my coworkers died”
“That’s horrible!” She replied

“Tragic… The company is insuring the families of the deceased with hundreds of thousands of dollars”
“How did you survive?” The wife asked.

“I stepped outside for a smoke when it caught fire” said the husband, to which the wife replied “This is why I’ve told you a million times to quit smoking!”

Happy Fourth Of July, Now, Please Go Protect Your Pets

I am beginning to see the truth in the way New Jersey handled this back in the day.

They banned anything that went “bang”.

Luckily we have some “doggy downers” from the vet in the house.  I have learned to dose him about a half hour before sunset which takes the edge off.

Rack, my McNab SuperDog (TM) is like just about every other dog I can think of.  He hates Thunderstorms and Fireworks.  It turns him into a shivering mess.

This is the day where more dogs go missing than any other.  He will be hiding in the corner, trying to merge with the couch.  It’s where I sit at night until the sun comes in the front window, then again where I reappear when the sun goes behind the taller buildings to my west.

I expect that since the rednecks down the block are staying here instead of going to someplace else where they can get bit by mosquitoes and go Fish in’ and Hun tin’, they will be shooting off an obscene amount of fireworks tonight.  If not them, someone else will pick up the slack.

Rack is in for it.

Mind you, I like fireworks and the way they look.  Ooh and Ahh and all that.  I used to go to a park in Cherry Hill NJ near the house and watch a number of professional fireworks from a chair or in the comfort of my car.  A good friend Laurie cued me into that you can park in a lot in Cooper River Park and see more fireworks than you could possibly consider firing off in a lifetime from there.  Plus the reflection on the river itself was rather nice.

Bring a camera, preferrably a time lapse one.

So since sundown here is 8:16 PM, We will have gotten our walk in, and I’ll give him his happy pills about a half hour before that.  Hopefully we will get back before they turn this street into a war zone.

Then again, it is wet season and we have an 80% chance of rain.  I’m praying for rain.

On the other hand, I do have a time lapse camera and a porch, and I know how to use them.

Watch over your dogs.  This is not a night to leave them out.  Cats too should be brought inside, well every day since an Outdoor Cat is merely a stray.  People can be evil to strays.