Saturday, December 19, 2015

2015 Tualatin Flood

A few days ago i thought the only way i was going to see that park again (Brown's Ferry) was covered with mud. But i was wrong. Only a little area was affected. Much of it looks like after a heavy raining. Water got from the river in the street through some sort of lake or appendix of the river. Parking lot is still closed but i walked in the park and took some pictures. Hopefully in a day or two the parking lot is going to be open again.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Red Light District

I once joked on a forum or don't know where. (This time i won't bring in here a link to document everything that i'm saying. It's so tedious and idea wrecking. Once because while i'm working to retrieve it i loose momentum and second whoever follows it might loose it as well. Maybe i gained enough credit to just write things without cross-referencing with a link everything).

December 1st. The first day after the stickers expire on the Nissan. Got it in November 99, there are 16 years and the car is a 93. November, odd years, time to renew.

So what's the joke. Can't remember, i boil with frustration. Oh. The title.

Red light district is where red light cameras are? Ha ha ha... Beaverton is full of them. There are some... is that Tualatin or Sherwood, the one i just passed today FOUR times?

The envelope was there on Angela's desk and first thing i remembered in the morning was to go to DMV with the old piece of... No i shouldn't be talking like that. Cause recently i just rediscovered what a engineering marvel it is... (That motivated me to find what the problem was with the Chevy from the beginning...) Though with the paint worn-out and painted over and with a spray can every year and a missing motor mount and still a tire vibrating after replacing all the tires, water leaking inside from the rear windshield and oil pouring on the exhaust...

Yes i should have bought a new used car before i started with the repairs this year... First radiator was leaking at the upper joint between the plastic frame and the metal serpentine... Then motor mounts, driveaxles and yes, the distributor, coil, plugs and wires, the full she-bang... 2000 bucks so far...

But right after it started running like in the beginning... 16 years ago when i first got it... With the exception of a noise when hitting bumps...

I had in mind a small adjustment on the TPS sensor... Last time i checked it it was .63 volts... Before that, weeks ago, when i finished with it and got thrilled by the results, almost 30 mpg on the freeway, it was adjusted by ear alone. Then i put it at .5. Then the mileage dropped to 20 and about a week ago i found it at .63. I remembered i read somewhere it should be between .45 and .55. So i put it at .48. But that was not as good as my adjustment by ear cause by the position of the gauge after 60 miles or so it was doing like 22 that was still low.

So this morning i got my meter and set it to .45. And i was feeling the difference in power and i already expect a close to ideal mileage.

Then i drove to DEQ. Straight on Tualatin Sherwood. I was looking for the camera. I saw it. It was green. I passed and kept my eyes on the light. Green. Positive. Noted.

The line at DEQ Sherwood was all the way to the street. Tried vainly to get some wi-fi on my phone just to not get bored in line. Got a HTC 510 that now is 100 bucks at Best Buy but was on sale for 50 when i got it. Not activated. Got a number from Google and i use it only when i got wi-fi, with Google Hangouts.

Got a fair signal from the nearby Walmart. Could use Google Maps but no hangouts. But while taping on the phone time passed quite fast and soon i got at the bay...

From the beginning, trouble. They were taking two cars at a time, each lane, two bays. Got in bay nr.2 at lane nr.1. Had to wait because... They could not do the test for my... year of car at bay 2. Didn't have an analyzer... (only a computer reader). Though at bay 2 lane 2 they had one, as i went later for a... volutary test. Cause i did not believe the results of the first.

Some truck on the bay nr.2 lane 2 was putting out bad smell and noise, covering my car. So i stopped the engine while waiting to pass at bay 1 to see if my car was smelling like that. It wasn't. So i started the engine again as i advanced. Finally got at bay 1 after they finnished with the car in front so they tested it.

It passed but the result were marginal.

Then more trouble inside. Cause i didn't have the insurance policy number (i couldn't remember Angela told me was in the glove compartment of the car). So i paid some 20 bucks only for the test and followed the technician's instruction and went to the DMV next intersection to pay for the rest and get the stickers. But there, after taking a number and coming back to DEQ to look for my small ATT phone with prepaid minutes, that was actually at home, the one i used to make call when i don't have wi-fi, i came back only to find out they could not pull my insurance number either.

So i went home. Again, holding my breath wile passing through the red light camera intersection (105 and Tualatin Sherwood i guess). Green all the way.

At home i finally called Angela and she told me the policy number was maybe in the glove compartment. Grabbed from there it and and tried to find a DMV where i could go without passing through a red light camera. It was on Monroe St, next to where i used to live in Lake Oswego. Only when i got there, a sign on the machine with numbers was saying they take only cash and checks. Hm. Who is using cash and checks these days besides DMV?

Couldn't talk to anybody and took a chance and went back to DMV in Sherwood, the one next to DEQ. And just before the red light camera intersection, Adele started singing [on the radio]. Then again i went through the same mental processes i do every time when i hear that song. And woke myself up on the other side of the red light camera intersection, with some cars in front of me and some after, not knowing what the color of the light was...

They didn't take cards either and then i went to DEQ again. But the only way they could get me stickers where only if i paid the 20 bucks for the test, again.

So i asked them to do a voluntary test again since i was there, planning to go to an ATM, withdraw 100 bucks and go and pay cash at the DMV, (in Oregon on cars made before 96 you can do as many free voluntary tests as you want) just to see if the first one was not manipulated. So they did, but then the printer... broke. And i asked them if there was an analyzer at bay 1 lane 1 and they didn't know what to tell me. And one more thing. Everywhere i go these days i talk to people that obviously are not Americans. I speculated for a long time what they might be but now i think i got the answer.

They told me though the result was slightly better than the first one.

Then the third guy came and since i wasn't going, then they fixed the printer and gave me a printout with some of the result at the limit and some worse then the first test at bay 2 lane 1 though still passing.

Then i came home and started thinking if i ran a red light camera or not the second time when i went to DMV on Tualatin Shwerood Hwy.

Not being able to get the answer i called DMV on the phone. But guess what. My voip Google Hangouts phone was working with big delays, not like usually when it was working similiarly with any 4G phone. Could harldy talk to them. Finally i got to talk to a guy who seem to understand what i'm saying and ask him about the following:

DMV has a "driver improvment program" that is based on the number of tickets including red light camera tickets. If you get 3 tickets within 18 months you're ok but if you get one more, you get a 1 months suspension or something like this.

Basically i was questioning the legality of red light tickets since they are sent in mail (like i got the last one) from some private company in Arizona that owns the cameras without an officer of one of the Police agencies in Oregon ever seeing it. Oregon laws says an officer of law has to have enough reasons to believe you committed an infraction BEFORE issuing a ticket which on red light cameras would be possible only if the cops would actually be somewhere in a room in front of a monitor and seeing the video stream in real time.

But this is not the case. No officer sees those because they are being mailed, as the stamp on the envelope says, directly from A PRIVATE COMPANY in Arizona.

Then i told the guy about defense. When you go in front of a judge and the cops stick a picture of you while passing though an intersection with the only witness (in that picture with your face the light is not even visible, the light is in a separate picture) a camera, you can't possibly defend yourself, since you cannot even remember the event, after one week of driving prior to receiving the letter and start trying frantically to remember how it happened. So how can you go and defend yourself in front of the judge if you cannot even remember what and how it happened?

That would not be the case if an officer actually pulls you over right away, when you have all in your immediate memory.

Or like me right now. I am in the situation of not being able to remember how i passed that intersection, because of Adele and some crazy DJs. Not weeks or days or even hours. I could not remember because i never new. I was just following the traffic, with others following me.

And one more thing. The hefty fines are designed with expenses of having cops on the street in mind. I once stood at an intersection with a red light camera just to see how many make the same mistake i did 2 times within a year or so. That is not fulling stopping before making a turn on red. 90% of the drivers made the same mistake. How much money and who are getting that money from this BUSINESS?

I think when the law was issued they did not have in mind red light cameras. Some inventive lawyers might have found what they think it is a loophole, but probably it would not stand if seriously challenged? By who? People who are tired from work or fixing cars or cleaning or writing blogs and pay just not to have more trouble and time wasted?

So here i went to the liquor store. Cheap brandy, used a card. The lady at the counter said something if my card had a chip cause they have to do it differently. Then i remembered. Liquor stores in Oregon are state owned also. How come they have card reading machines?