The Three Martini Renovation Or How To Piss Off Bloggers


The Wall Street Journal has a article title “The Three Martini Renovation” in which the the article can be summarized to this

But when novices who’ve had a few drinks get a hold of crowbars, drills and Sawzalls, the results are sometimes less than satisfactory.

A number of house bloggers were interviewed for this article, including myself. Many bloggers believe the reporter of the story, Jennifer Saranow, misrepresented herself.

The reporter told me she was writing a story about such work parties. People helping people. That sort of thing. When I described the plaster party to her on the phone, she expressed the usual polite surprise that people still help each other like that.

Then the reporter admitted the story was not a feel-good story about people helping their neighbors. It was a story about people throwing renovation parties to save money and inviting inexperienced friends over to mix alcohol with demolition – friends who ended up screwing things up or getting injured.’s account of the story is pretty good. I recommend reading the whole thing.

I was contacted via my blog, but I took several weeks to get back to the reporter. By the time she had interviewed me, I think she pretty much had the story written and didn’t dig too much. I did have a demolition part with plenty of beer but there was no excitement like some drunken friend taking out the wrong wall. I’m not mentioned in the story.

Advertising On Something That Everyone Will See

Glenn Piller, an auto-racing enthusiast, has stamped the back of more than $40,000 worth of U.S. currency, from $1 to $100 bills, with simple red-ink promos for his new Web site, http://www.ArizonaAuto

I’m sure he’s not the first one to think of this. Thankfully It’s not legal but it’s not clear to the feds if it’s advertising or not.

Kim Bruce, spokeswoman with the U.S. Secret Service, which enforces laws against misuse of currency, said federal law forbids the use of money for advertising or any changes to currency that makes it “unfit to be reissued.” At issue is whether his stamps constitute advertising, because no product is being sold.

azcentral article

Albuquerque Wants Free WiFi Citywide

The Mayor of Albuquerque wants free WiFi for everyone in the city.

a two-tiered wireless Internet signal covering the entire city that will support not just the basics of Web surfing, e-mail and the like, but phone service and video. Those two tiers are a free, 1 megabit signal for anyone and a premium service at 3 Mb for a “reasonable” cost.

Of course Comcast and Qwest don’t like it. I say screw ’em. Qwest especially doesn’t seem interested in offering extra services and Comcast would probably force everyone to pay $10/month for cable before you can use it. It’s the technical issues and money that will keep this from happening.

One wireless provider estimates it would cost $25 million and would require a access point on every building in the city, I think that’s overblown. They cite the problems that Rio Rancho has had completing it’s network. I thought Rio Rancho had completed it’s network.

I hope they try it anyways. I could use some free wifi when I have to drive into Albuquerque

Housing Sales Fall

Monthly home re-sales continue to slip – New Mexico Business Weekly

The 14 percent, representing the sale of 741 homes last month vs. 861 homes sold during the same month last year, is for detached, single family homes and is a continuing trend that dates to mid-2006. With fewer buyers in the market, the average days on the market has gone from 72 days in February of 2006 to an average of 82 days this February. Month-to-month, there was a 3 percent decline in the number of new listings for sale, a dip from 1,952 in January 2007 to 1,897 in February.

There are three houses for sale on my street, they have sat there for a few months. Glad I’m not selling, wish I had some money to buy.

Intel Will Upgrade Rio Rancho Plant

Intel Corp. said on Monday it will spend $1 billion to $1.5 billion to retool a factory in New Mexico, which will start to make chips with cutting-edge 45-nanometer-wide transistors in the second half of 2008.

The factory to be renovated in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, is known as Fab 11X and will be the fourth Intel plant to use 45-nanometer technology, which includes new materials that boost chip efficiency by cutting leakage of electrical current.

My employment is secure.

Here’s a little bit more information about the IRB that was used to fund this upgrade. Looks like there’s some money left in the pot.

So Much For The No Rigs Ordinance

The Rio Rancho City Council overturned a recently enacted Ordinance that banned tractor trailers from parking in residential areas.

On Wednesday, Jan. 24, about a dozen truck drivers attended a City Council meeting to speak out against an ordinance that had been approved the week before. It prohibited tractor-trailers from parking on residential lots in Rio Rancho.

Many of the drivers argued that before purchasing houses in Rio Rancho, they had checked with the city to make sure they could park their rigs at their homes. Others said they had surveyed their neighbors, and found that many were surprised by the city’s decision to enact such an ordinance.

Personally I’m not sure what to make of it. I’ve seen the rigs parked around Rio Rancho and they do take a lot of room and don’t look that great. They shouldn’t be around for very long, since the truckers make their money by being on the road, not parking the truck.