i called fawcett oil early this morning to ask about the $270 value service plan charge they put on my parents' heating bill. just as i thought, the free service that got last year would now cost them money, and for their convenience, they were automatically signed up for the service. to their credit, they were kind enough to remove it without question. i also asked them about locking in the fuel rate, something my mother thought she did last winter until she got the bill and a big expensive surprise. fawcett told me they didn't have a rate lock, but did have a rate cap, currently at $2.60/gallon. she sent the contract to my father's e-mail.

once that was done i was pretty much free the rest of the day. it was actually a nice day, very summery and not as humid as in days past. it would've been a nice day to go naturing, but i usually have to prepare for an outing a day in advance. instead i stayed home the entire day. there were thoughts of getting some groceries, or biking to the cafe, but i postponed all of that to tomorrow. when i called my mother to let her know about fawcett oil, she told me the roofer already delivered the new shingles to the house, currently just sitting on the lawn, so it looks like an install probably sometime this week.

i did a water change yesterday and today i had to do another one, as clumps of green algae settled to the bottom of the tank from yesterday's cleaning. the algae can't be vacuumed up in one session, as i can only siphon out 20% of the water at any one time for fear of crashing the nitrogen cycle. it'll probably take me a few days to remove all that algae, and who knows what else will grow back in its place. i'm getting close to adding some algae remover chemical, but i'm afraid it'll hurt the plants and the fish, even though it's advertised as safe.

my father wants me to buy the 15.6-inch nagoya NA-771 antenna ($16.99) for the baofeng radio, but i've been doing some research, and some people say it's a great replacement antenna, while others say it's no better than the stock antenna, and from his SWR tests the stock antenna is actually pretty good already. i added some local repeater stations through the CHIRP software and pinged them to test if i could reach them. most of them pinged back, some even with morse code signals, which i'm not sure whether it was a fluke or by design. in my abundant spare time i really should be studying up on the HAM radio license test and get my permit, at least of us should be authorized operator.

i had a yogurt for lunch and then the final piece of the quiche for dinner. in between i had some chocolate cookies, a honeycrisp apple, and some vanilla bean ice cream. li didn't come back until late, after 8pm. i left the back door open along with the light and he came in through the rear entrance. tonight was the season premiere of legends of tomorrow on the CW, a show i now watch, not because i follow everything that's happening, but because it's just mindless entertainment. afterwards i watched kevin (probably) saves the world on ABC. it's interesting, but i don't like the quasi-religious message of the show.