i didn't want to get out of bed this morning. what was the point?
i still couldn't understand how clinton lost. they did everything right, had presidential endorsements, hordes of celebrities, a top-notch ground game when i don't think trump had anything. they left nothing left to chance, there was a strong black and latino turnout, and even then, clinton managed to lose. all the polls were wrong for the most part, which meant when asked if they'd vote for trump, maybe people said no when in fact they did. i don't think it's racism or sexism or xenophobia, although that's part of it. a lot of people wanted change, and they didn't care how it came about, even if it meant possibly destroying a cherished democratic institution. the same desire for change catapulted obama into the white house in 2008, and like in 2016. both times, hillary clinton was on the losing side of a historical upset. 2016 has been a year of change, with brexit and duarte, and now this wave has swept america. people are afraid, uncertain about the future, don't like the way things are moving these days. times like these, it's easy for voters to try some radical. it wasn't just the fact that trump won the presidency, but also the republicans gained significant victories in both houses of congress. trump also won states that were supposedly clinton's wirewall (5 states i heard), even taking pennsylvania. even worse, hillary won the popular vote, but still lost the election.
i don't want to watch the news and be reminded of what happened. but watched i did, when hillary gave her concession speech late this morning, followed by obama's short speech from the white house. i was still very depressed but felt a little better.
when my father went to market basket in the early afternoon, i went with him. i didn't need to buy anything, but he needed my help in picking the proper drain cleaner (foaming action for a slow but more thorough cleaning). after returning home, i took a shower. while getting ready to leave, i heard renee knocking on my door again. i didn't bother answering the door. i hate it that she uses me as her personal free IT service. a few times is fine, but it's starting to become a habit with her.
i biked to belmont around 3pm because there was the possibility of a brief sprinkle.
i helped my parents renew their AAA membership. they wanted to downgrade from the plus to basic service (from $82 to $52) and remove my sister from their account because she has her own car service plan with her leased vehicle. just a simple renewal could be done online, but to downgrade, you needed to call them directly.
after dinner, my father and i went to the basement to install the new nest thermostat. earlier i tested the transformer leads and the T terminals. they either read 5V or 18V (AC). we decided to follow the diagrammed reddit instructions i found online and attach a wire to the middle transformer lead. we then connected the 3 wires to the nest backplate and attached the nest thermostat. there was nothing. not a light, the screen didn't turn on, nothing. what we did notice was the transformer getting really hot, so we quickly shut down the power and unplugged the wires from the nest, fearing that maybe we soldered to the wrong lead or perhaps short-circuited something.
fearing that we might've accidentally damaged the 24VAC aquastat transformer, we plugged everything back (2 wires, forgoing the homemade C terminal wire) and tested the old thermostat, which thankfully still worked. so we did some voltage tests and discovered that 28V ran between the two T wires. does that mean the cables are powered? so we connected just the two wires (R and W) to the nest backplate and then popped in the nest thermostat. there was a red led, followed by a green led, and then the screen came on. success! at least the nest thermostat wasn't broken, and seemed to be working, but was getting a false high temperature reading because it was resting on top of the boiler.
we connected the 2 T terminal wires to the wires from upstairs and then went up to install the nest thermostat into the wall, replacing the old thermostat. my father wanted to use the wallplate, even though i think the nest looks better as is, but the wallplate would at least cover up the holes from the previous thermostat. the wallplate ended up aligning perfectly with the previous holes. like downstairs, the nest seemed to be okay, only time will tell. i created a new nest account for my father so he could control the thermostat remotely with a phone app. we also created a heating schedule with my laptop (easier to do it on a computer screen than a phone screen). i also added my name to the nest thermostat so i can control it from my phone as well.
i didn't really notice that much of a difference between the 3rd generation nest thermostat at my parents and my own 2nd generation nest thermostat. the screen is bigger with a higher resolution, but it's not something that noticeable. 3rd generation has the ability to display a clock, but isn't that useful because it's a relatively small clock face, and depending on where you have your nest thermostat, it might not be a place that would normally require a clock. if you had to choose, 2nd generation is perfectly okay, but i managed to buy the 3rd gen off of ebay for $200 (which is the same price for a 2nd gen, and once i put in the paperwork for the energy rebate, that's $100 less).
i didn't get back home until 9pm. i knew freddy was already home by checking the DHCP client list, and sent him a quick whatsapp text letting him know he's free to have more lasagna from last night. based on my recommendation, he actually went to the MFA after work, but only saw the first floor before returning home because he had some work to do.
i gave more thought to the way we connected the nest. taking the voltage reading between the two T wires (R and W) would of course give us back a resulting reading of 24VAC (actually 28V) since those wires come from the 120-24V transformer. that's how thermostats work: by completely the circuit, it allows the heat source to turn on. but when the heat source is off, the circuit is broken, so it wouldn't receive power anymore. so maybe the nest is doing that weird thing where it steals power from the aquastat boiler controls by intermittently powering on the boiler.
so i checked the battery level of that nest thermostat and it seems to be increasing, even though the boiler heat was never activated. so who knows. maybe it really doesn't need a common terminal wire, because our aquastat is wired in such a way that there is always power to the 2 T wires, even when the boiler isn't turned on. we may have soldered a C terminal for nothing. but like i said before, only time will tell. another thing the new nest thermostat was doing was it was running a few degrees hotter than ambient. sometimes that happens when it's secretly downloading and installing an upgrade, which was the case (upgraded to 5.6-7 as of tonight). when i checked it online a few hours later, i saw that the temperature had dropped back to room temperature again, so everything was working.