Monthly Archives: September 2011

The Dirge of Existence

Not a very inspiring or uplifting day so far. My bank made me waste an hour there getting a new card because they are worried my old one got cloned (after just giving my VISA a theft false-positive on our road trip), and my regular pharmacist wasn’t working today and the owner standing-in couldn’t figure out my prescription so it took another hour to get it realized. But worst of all was my doctor’s appointment at which I was told that we are nearing the end of the road and will soon have run out of treatment options. I am not at all afraid of dying and, constant pain and the grind toward cripplehood aside (after too much walking at the airshow I had a painful and embarrassing fall down the streetcar stairs), I do have a richly awesome and enjoyable life. The only part of dying that I tremble in fear and shame of is letting down my loved ones who I desperately want to be there for. That’s the only thing that really brings me grief. Everything else I can accept.

I saw all the links doing the blog rounds about hobo nickels and specifically skull nickels so I was curious about how hard it would be to make one. Apparently the ones that are pictured in those links are primarily made with much older coins that are made out of a softer alloy than modern nickels. My own attempt to carve a 2002 Canadian nickel somewhat confirms that — it was quite nightmarishly difficult to scrape this design with the tip of a knife. I tried using my Dremel but it wasn’t really capable of doing fine detail work, at least not with the tips I have. So this is a one-off failed experiment.

I know it looks like crap, but it’s really hard to do!

More productively, I have a lot of new jewelry designs here in wax, but I’m waiting to cast it because my current project is a DIY vacuum pump/chamber based on a modified electric tire pump (one of the cheap $20 ones — sure beats spending $1,000 on the real deal). If it actually works I’ll post construction info. I don’t need it to be that strong. This isn’t for degassing silicone (although that would be nice), but just for pulling the bubbles out of plaster when doing lost wax work.

Oh but I nearly forgot that I do have some good news — my “Pottermore” beta account just got activated so I can retreat into that fantasy, and maybe make Caitlin, who is rereading some of the old books jealous in the process. Mwahhahahaha! Oh and we went and saw Apollo 18 a few days ago which was fun (if a little flawed), although not as fun as what we watched last night — the original 1985 Fright Night. I’d forgotten how delightful that movie was.