Your Attention Please

My wife and I have changed since we live in Ontario, in fact we have changed a lot in the recent year or so, our opinions, politics, and beliefs are not the same that most people that know us in real life would associate with us. For example, we are not members of the Green Party any longer, nor do we support them in anyway. We could be called for lack of better terms, Preppers, Libertarian, Self-Reliant, Self-Efficient, or at the very least try to be.

We do not support the socialist mind set that has invaded the culture of North America, we believe in Sovereignty, not Solidarity. Liberty is best protected by non-interference. I could go on, but this is the bulk of what you should know.

If you want to stay with us, you must first get permission to do so in advance, as of October 14th 2009 not a single person has received such confirmation. There is a very good reason why my wife, and I, have not given a direct yes, or no, on this matter. We have in 22 years of being together helped many people with a place to live. Every single one of them are in exactly the same position they were before we met them. In other words, the heart ache, hardship, and effort on our part was for nothing. People, including ourselves, do not change who they are unless they have too. We have had too, most people we know have not.

Realize that we are setting up a farm to be off the grid, to supply all our needs as much as we can, there is a mind set here that is required for this. That mind set is where one believes that you are responsible for taking care of yourself. If you can not balance your budget, plant a garden, store up preps, ride a horse, pay your rent, keep a job, work your butt off, buy smart at the grocery store, clean your home, what makes you think you have the discipline to do those same things at our place? What makes you think we will believe that you will fit into our lifestyle?

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, conn a ship, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve an equation, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” – Robert Anson Heinlein

So hear are the rules that you should be made aware of before you even think about asking us for a place to stay.

Rule #1

No drugs. I don’t care what your reasons are. Listen to me when I say NO DRUGS, this includes all illegal drugs, but get this, NO DRUGS also means no drugs prescribed by a Psychiatrist. If you can not live without them, if you can not function properly without them, you become a liability to us WSHTF.

Rule #2

We have guns. If you can not be around firearms, don’t show up. If you have ever fired a weapon in anger, YOU ARE NOT WELCOME HERE. If you think guns are cool, go away. We have guns for hunting. They are not cool, they are tools. They are dangerous, period. Even if you have your own, and are fully legal for Canada’s version of an open carry, these guns are ours, you can not touch them. NOT EVEN TOUCH THEM. No one under 21 years of age are allowed any kind of weapon, or firearm, on our property, period.

Rule #3

Everything, and I do mean everything, that Kymber posted on CPN above applies. Follow her suggestions to the letter, and expect the same in return.

Rule #4

My wife is the head of the house. I am in charge of everything else, that means everything outside of the house, including you. If you do not respect the way our authority plays out, get out.

Rule #5

We like the local police. If you are on probation, sorry you can not come here, if you are not the age of majority, forget it (children with parents exempt). If you have a criminal record for violence, theft, fraud, drugs, or illegal weapons, do not ask us for shelter.

RULE #6

Family comes first. This includes brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, cousins, nephews, nieces, grandparents, sons, and daughters, in other words blood. If we can help anyone, they get it first.

That’s it.

Wolfe

Ecozoom For Your Bol

Ecozoom cook stove, this is THE prepper stove, nothing else even comes close. My first impression, WOW, and maybe a few more awes tossed in! It’s huge, I can cook anything on it. But this stove goes way beyond what you would think of as a prepper survival type cook stove… it’s a bio-mass fueled burning cook stove, … so I tried everything in it.

First thing I did with this stove was a very simple test, I dug out old charcoal from the bar-be-que, you know, those little bits and pieces left over from the last time we had ribs etc. I wanted to see if the ecozoom was more efficient then just using a pail with holes in it for air, tossed in some scrape wood, sticks, leaves for lighting it up…. those left overs lasted almost FOUR HOURS!

This is the next generation bio-mass stove. It was designed by Aprovecho Research Center for sending to third world countries, in other words this stove was intentionally made for long term survival situations.

This stove can burn any dry biomass, and is incredibility efficient . We ended up using the stove more then just testing it in the last couple of weeks since we’ve had it. It can boil water with very little fuel which impressed me a lot.

I need to to stress here that this is the stove you bring to your BOL before SHTF, as it is to heavy to haul in a pack sack at the 11th hour. That aside, I figure I could do with a couple more, since when we made spaghetti sauce on it, we realized we needed another to cook the pasta.

Some things should be added to the shopping list if you get one of these. As it is just a basic fire pit you can put on a table. There is a pot guard that comes with it, but for the most part I found the guard useless. It also comes with a little wire feeder rack which despite it’s simplicity works amazingly well.

The important, or should I suggest for the preppers who are looking for something like this, is that there was almost no smoke once the chamber heated up. Good for OPSEC if you ask me.

I took the smaller grill off my smoker to make some simple flat bread, it’s one of those treats we like to has with salsa while watching movies on a Friday night. They came out pretty good for an open flame, we usually use a cast iron frying pan on the kitchen stove, or the Coleman when the power’s out. The direct touch of the flame added a little different taste. I’m willing to bet that if I made stew on this, it would work better in a ceramic crock pot rather then a cast iron one.

With the frequency that the power goes out on this street we live on, this is a Godsend. It also is a major plus on hot days where we want to cook something other then just on the BBQ. But the little trap on the bottom for ashes fills up to fast, I think I need to find some kind of small tin shovel like kids used to get for the beach in the 70’s to clean it out when we use it for more then one firing in a row.

Other then those points I see this as the best stove for BOL. I plan on getting a couple more, maybe even send one to family members back east. (My Dad would love this thing!)

I’m not the only one who’s been reviewing this stove within the prepper’s network, so I’ve included here some links to the other reviews….

– Wolfe

Update: (March 2013) I just dropped by the main Ecozoom website to edit this post during my blog update and noticed the new models they have, I immediately saw the double burner model as a plus, it’s now on my wish list. (Image below)

http://jewishpreppers.blogspot.com/2011/08/review-ecozooms-versa-stove.html

http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/ecozoom-rocket-stove-review/

http://thesurvivalmom.com/2011/07/30/cooking-with-the-ecozoom-stove/

http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/ecozoom-rocket-stove-review/

originally posted on: 2011-08-06

This post was last updated on: January 12 2015 16:53:57

What To Expect After Shtf

FROM THE ARCHIVES 2015

PTSD (Post-traumatic stress disorder) is the most severe form of emotional and psychological trauma. Its primary symptoms include intrusive memories or flashbacks, avoiding things that remind you of the traumatic event, and living in a constant state of “red alert”. If you have PTSD, it’s important to see a trauma specialist.” – Help Guide 1

Anxiety/Fearfulness is only one of the reaction people have, the symptoms can include chest pain, difficulty breathing, evaluated heart rate and blood pressure, surges of adrenaline, and unreasonable fear. The physical reactions come from the fight or flight response, and increases the supply of oxygen to the blood, muscle become more tense to improve response time. Modern man with his giant brain has thought himself into a corner with regards to anxiety, we tend to try to think our way out of a crisis. Survivalists should try to imagine situations that are likely to occur, and have detailed plans of action memorized long before any such event takes place, when an event happens stick to the plan, take action regards of how you feel.

Numbness, as in devoid of emotions, is another emotional response to disaster. This is where you have to force yourself to trust those in your group, trust your preplanned set of actions, even when you do not feel like it. Numbness is a sense of disconnection to the events and people around you, combined sometimes with a sense of constant danger. You can be prone to this even if you are ready for a disaster, but already under stress from daily life. This is one of the reasons I advocate for the living it now lifestyle you plan to be in after the end of your world as you know it. Choosing to live self-efficiently now, being self-reliant now, lessens the impact of an event that forces people into that lifestyle.

Depression has been called the number one killer in America in recent years. It is connected to so many pharmaceutical drugs I’m surprised that it doesn’t have it’s own index on the stock market. Depression is the result of one of two factors when it is boiled down to it’s basics, either the cause is related to something in which a person feels they are the victim of something out of their control, or it is related to a low self-image. In the case of situations that are out of your control, you can not avoid it WSHTF, you will feel this way, it is a normal response to overwhelming events, but it doesn’t mean you can do nothing. The cure for almost all emotional issues that arise from disasters is action. This means that you will have to plan out what you are going to do, even while waiting for the dust to settle. This can include reviewing first aid materials, reading hard copies of guides, checking the state of supplies, the list will need to go on for how long you might have to wait before you can start working on the garden, or even to bug out to a safer place. This same set of preparations will help with feelings of guilt (survivors guilt), grief, vulnerability, and even disbelief for those with you.

“Pamper yourself. Get plenty of rest. Eat regular meals even if you don’t feel like it. Take precautions to be safe and comfortable. Be as self-nurturing as you can. ” – CIGNA Behavioral Health 2

– Wolfe

1http://www.helpguide.org/mental/post_traumatic_stress_disorder_symptoms_treatment.htm

2CIGNA Behavioral Health – Disaster Reactions: How to Cope with Them [PDF]

 

Why The Green Party is a Bad Choice

From The Archives: 2013

Most of my long time friends know that I use to support the Green Party of Canada, they also know that I no longer do. But the reasons why are so long I haven’t posted all of them, and the main reason for that is that the list just seemed to long.   In 2006 and 2008, the Green Party of Canada published a policy book to outline in detail what they stood for, in order to get rid of the so-called image that they were a one issue party. It is this very policy book that made me realize that I couldn’t support them any longer.   In this post I am going to attempt to go through each issue, and perhaps name a few others that they did not include.   Green-Economy:

Green Party MPs will work to:

  • Pass the Canada Well-Being Measurement Act and implement the Canadian Index of Well-being.
  • Begin a partial, gradual, revenue neutral tax shift from income, consumption and business taxes to resource use taxes, pollution taxes and land value levies reflecting corporate profits.
  • Review the Green tax shift every 3 years in order to monitor progress and readjust fiscal imbalances.
  • Create thousands of new “Green collar jobs” by encouraging the development of low-emission industries in areas most affected by the shift away from natural resource sectors.
  • Legislate stronger, more effective antitrust laws in concentrated industry sectors.
  • Reduce taxes for small and medium sized businesses in their first 5 years of existence.
  • Provide higher risk financial support networks that will encourage people to invest in innovative businesses.” – http://greenparty.ca/en/platform2006/green_economy

Canada Well-Being Measurement Act:

BILL C-268 : “An Act to develop and provide for the publication of measures to inform Canadians about the health and well-being of people, communities and ecosystems in Canada” – parl.gc.ca

I love it when a political party thinks something is a good idea, and steals it as if it was their own. Marlene Jennings, a Liberal, was the one who proposed this bill in 2001, secondly the Well-Being Act is just a GDI. The problem I have with this system is that it is subjective to a worldview, or opinion of what is valuable by an ideology, rather then facts. If what is in my best interest differs from those who judge what the current GDI is, the measurement is useless to me, and my in fact harm my interests. Facts on the other hand, such as the actual amount of GDP this country’s dollar is based on, tells me if I can expect to export my product or service to our major trading partner the USA.

Resource Use Taxes: Taxing resources is like any other tax, an act of theft. But assuming that I believe we need something like a social contract to enact some kind of tax on the general population, I believe that it should effect everyone equally, or not at all. I don’t like rules which single out a group of people over others, some one always ends up with an unfair deal. Taxing just resources put the burden of the budget on the producers. You know them, they are the companies and individuals which actually create good jobs. If I am a prepper, living on a homestead, and produce all my own food, energy, and basic needs, under a resource based tax system, I pay nothing. That doesn’t feel fair to me, and in addition it make me a target. No thank you. I would rather see a flat rate percentage tax on everyone, period. And before the Green Party cries foul on behalf of the poor, disabled, and pensioners…. note this, I am one.

Review the Green tax shift every 3 years: All this tells me is that they already know that this will not work, and have written into their policy book an op-out to change the rules after being elected. At least they are being honest that they are going to break their campaign promises!

Create thousands of new “Green collar jobs”: How exactly does the Green Party plan to help any of us get a single job? Oh, wait, they don’t actually promise that do they? What they promise to do is to ‘create’ these ‘green‘ jobs. That translates to using tax payer’s money to give some one else a job in the ‘green’ sector. I still call that welfare, not a job. Any time tax payer’s foots the bill to create and keep a job for some one, it’s the same as welfare. If that industry could be self-sustaining all on it’s own, it wouldn’t need the government to get involved in the first place.

Legislate stronger, more effective antitrust laws in concentrated industry sectors: All you have to do to figure that one out is read it a few times. Maybe it would help if I translate the double-speak. Translation: “Selectively list certain industries that we choose and screw them over with strong laws under the label of :We Don’t Trust You.” I know I am going to enact a Godwin rule here, but this sounds a lot like National Socialism to me. The whole point of a free market system is that it is self correcting. When the government makes decisions for the population it effectively says we do not trust our people to make informed, adult decisions on their own, so we will legislate the morals from the top. Making stronger antitrust laws isn’t the problem, making stronger antitrust laws towards a labeled group of people, and industries is Nazism.

Reduce taxes for small and medium sized businesses in their first 5 years of existence:   Ever get suckered into a mobile phone contract? For the first three years you only pay $49.95 a month and get this neat cell phone free! Sound familiar? Small and Medium business can either compete with larger ones because they are local service based businesses, or they can not compete with larger ones because of lack import fairness, marketing capital, and a host of other issues. None of these would be effected by reducing the tax to local business, or increasing it for others. In fact the two major barriers to new businesses is government required paperwork, and the exchange rates for a fiat currency system.

Provide higher risk financial support networks that will encourage people to invest:   Remember that this quote is from the 2006 policy book! Every single layman on the planet that knows even the smallest of facts of the financial crisis of 2008, in which this very policy book was still being handed out after the crisis was in full swing, knows that encouraging High-Risk Investing is the worse thing you can do for fiscal responsibility. Can you imagine what Canada would be like today if the Green Party had won? … OK, you can stop laughing at the Greens now, it’s not polite.

Smart Economic Stimulus:   “Expand access to employment insurance for those who paid into it, while protecting the pensions of retired Canadians. Reduce EI and CPP contributions for businesses.”   This is one of those campaign promises that every one makes, “we will give you more money”. The problem with this is that the money has to come from somewhere and that usually means either tax cuts somewhere else, or increases to the tax payer. Well, actually it means both 99% of time.   The one thing that every responsible tax payer knows is that they are better managers of their money then the government. And considering that most of us will agree that we are not that very good at managing our money says a lot at how bad the government is at it. EI and CPP are a tax, period. If I had taken every cent that I had paid into it, and just stuck it in a regular bank account since day one, I’d be better off today, and so would anyone else that has paid into it including my parents. If you don’t believe me take at look at your own tax records, add up all your contributions and use an online calculator for investments that takes the dates into account. My only strong recommendation is, if you own any firearms, give them to your neighbor for a few days before you do this, and tell them not to give them back till you calm down, I’m not kidding, you will really want to kill the tax man.

Fair Global Trade:

Reform, revise and rethink our trade agreements. Trade is a part of a sustainable future only when it is fair for all.”

Double-Speak Alert! I’m one of the first people to note that the North American Free Trade Act was a bad idea, but creating yet another trade agreement is just, well, stupid. Mainly because any idea, even if a good one, can get messed up by a bunch of bureaucrats.

There is something that has always bugged me about any left-leaning organization, and that is the way they come to decisions as a group. The Green Party is a consensus-based organization, it is not a democracy based organization, and I would go so far as to say that they hate “Roberts Rules of Order” (www.robertsrules.org) Both myself, and my old mentor Phil noticed this right away.

The key to understanding that the above statement in the policy book is double speak is just one phrase “only when it is fair for all” , who exactly makes that decision, and how is that decision made? What is fair? Is it fair trade coffee we are speaking about? Fair to the farmers in South Africa? The point of a government is to have organization which looks beyond it’s borders and take into account the best interests of the voters. It is not the roll of government to be the moral police, to restrict trade, or even the playing field with other countries’ citizenship. I myself am also an Italian citizen, it does not sit well with me that if the Green Party of Canada ever wins the power it craves, that it might believe for whatever reason that all pizzas made in/shipped to Italy should get some kind of fair trade agreement when being imported to/or exported from Canada. It just sounds as stupid as any other product or service you can think of. We are not the moral police of the world, and to be that would mean to make the same mistakes our patriot brothers to the south have made. You’d better believe that if the Green party is given any power to create any Bill or Act, they will not debate this from a fair point of view of all voters, it will be written by only those who agree with consensus-based decision making. In other words, agree with our process, or don’t get a say.

Healthy Industry:

A healthy agriculture sector, with support for those who wish to transition to organic farming. A healthy fishery, with an end to devastating draggers. A sustainable forest industry with more emphasis on value added, and less raw log or unprocessed pulp export. More jobs for more people making real things.”

More jobs for people making real things… Great! I am of the firm belief that real wealth comes from actual ‘stuff’, couldn’t support a more capitalistic view more! … OK, I admit, I only said that to get under the skin of all the Green Party supporters who read this … Truth be told there is one thing in that line that bothers me right away. What if we’re wrong?

As a prepper, I believe that we should all learn how to make things ourselves, and develop skill sets that help us gain self-efficient trades. This usually means making real things, as in actual products like chairs, jars, and houses. I have also been a fisherman, and worked in silviculture, so I totally get healthy fishery… end dragging, and … sustainable forest thing. And although I will grow and eat my own organic veggies, don’t expect me to buy it (don’t ask, that’s another issue for another day).

But …

What if we’re wrong? What if making real products is a bad idea? What if we can not compete with China and India in making real things, but could compete with something else like science, technology, or energy? What if the issue isn’t something that is already illegal like dragging, or not replanting the forest, but the issue is that our debts are to high to deal with when we are not exploring other options to improve our lot like increasing our exports of raw logs?

Some one once told me about how imports and exports work. It will always be that Cuba will export sugar cane and the like to Canada because they are better at growing it. Canada will always export raw logs because it is just a better renewable export then anything else we have, and we are better at it then Japan, etc. It doesn’t matter what real thing you are talking about, if some one some where is better at it then you, you loose. The trick is to get better at something then anyone else. We grow grains here really good, same for wood, potash, and a host of other things like uranium ore. Interfere with the things that work, and you kill real jobs.

Most of the policies of the Green Party show that they have no idea how the real world works. This is just one of countless examples of why having them even given air time on national news is bad idea.

Cut wasteful subsidies:

End the failed strategy of throwing good money after bad in corporate bail-outs for big business, and subsidies to nuclear and fossil fuels.”

Great idea, end the fed! … I mean, errr …. end the welfare state! While we’re at it, let’s end all the hand outs…. I mean I didn’t vote to have the government sub Air-Canada, General Motors, solar panels in homes, wind mills, … and yet again we see that the Green Party really doesn’t want a fair deal for everyone equally. If you are going to stop handing out tax payer money to one group, end it to all, including that couple of bucks a political parties get per vote…. not that the Green Party would even exist if that was ended. Claiming that you are going to end a bad idea in one area, but not another, doesn’t stop it from being a bad idea. Subsidies are a bad idea, including those for housing, company start ups, training, school, transportation, public transportation, green technology, research, and trade. Claiming it is needed here, but not there, makes you a bigot.

Get the prices right:

Get the prices right for long term sustainability. Avoid structural deficits. Implement a revenue-neutral carbon pricing architecture to modernize our economy. Build a “Made in Canada” Green economy.”

Maybe statements like this is why I never bothered to write this before. None of this actually means anything outside of the green cult. It’s all idioms related to being a Green Party member, doubt it? Ask anyone who has never given the Green Party a second thought, what the heck that statement means. OK, to be fair, I can translate it…

Get the prices right for long term sustainability. … Create a balance budget, like every single other party claims too.

Avoid structural deficits … The government system is broken, we’re going to fix it, like every single other party claims too.

Implement a revenue-neutral carbon pricing architecture to modernize our economy … even thou Carbon monoxide is poisonous, we want to tax Carbon dioxide which is a natural organic compound that plants can not live without, instead.

Build a “Made in Canada” Green economy … because Made in Canada isn’t something to be proud of all on it’s own, we want it to be a ‘green’ thing!

Strong Communities:

A community is defined by more than geography. A community is people living together, taking care of each other, having time for each other.

Ummm … wait a sec…

“The term community has two distinct meanings: 1) A group of interacting people, living in some proximity (i.e., in space, time, or relationship). Community usually refers to a social unit larger than a household that shares common values and has social cohesion. The term can also refer to the national community or international community, and, 2) in biology, a community is a group of interacting living organisms sharing a populated environment. ” – Wikipedia

I’m willing to bet that the policy makers of the Green Party actually looked up the word community in Wikipedia and managed to get wrong still. Living together means something completely different then interacting with each other. Living together implies a commune, not community. And as for taking care of each other, that goes back to the whole ‘social contract’ issue, which I really don’t have the time to debate right now. But I will say this, every single “FAMILY” in a community will take care of their own first, before they will take care of their neighbor, and that is the way it should be. Having time for each isn’t something that makes sense to include here, unless the Green Party has some warped view that they can tell you what you should do with your free time.

Communities that work take work. Transportation systems that get you from here to there, quickly, efficiently, and safely. Water works that ensure clean and healthy water. All the things that make us love where we live. ….”

I agree that communities take work to work, kinda of a lame way to say to it thou. But communities do not have anything to do with (public implied) transportation issues, I can say that, because Canada has THOUSANDS of towns without public transportation, and they are almost always better at giving you an impression of being a real community then any one of the ones with a public transportation system. For that matter the same can be said for any area without a water works.

This is just the Green Party proving that it is out of touch with reality. The Green Party makes the claim that it’s an environmentally friendly political party, but most of the members are collage students who have never left the city, and wouldn’t know how to handle themselves in the bush. The think that they are really involved in the community, the man on the street, because most of them have been involved in some kind protest, boycott, or what not. But the truth is, they have no clue what real Canadians are really all about. This is actually a good thing, it will keep them from getting votes, and I am not about to name off where they are off base to help them. Maybe, they should just go have a life.

  Help for married couples and families:   “Fix the tax system. Lower income taxes and introduce full income splitting to reduce the tax burden on married couples and families.”   I actually agree with this statement, WOW, found one…. oh, wait…   The only problem I have with this is that I don’t believe the government should have anything to do with the church. I am a strong believer in the separation of church and state, and I believe that the act of marriage is a religious practice. This doesn’t mean that I am against Gay marriage, it means that any kind of marriage is none of the governments business because it is an act of faith. If income tax is a so called necessary evil, why not make it based on the individual rather then a unit, or some other label. Better yet, end it completely, it is after all evil to begin with.   “Share the load. More people working fewer hours. For those who want to, make it easier to telecommute or work from home. Share jobs. Flex hours. Flexible child care with access for all. Early childhood education. More workplace child care spaces. Support for those who stay home to raise their children and support for those who need to get back to work while their kids are still young. Help for local governments. Sustainable long-term funding support for municipalities to repair decades-old crumbling infrastructure. Build for the future. Create more of the common amenities all communities need for recreation, transportation, water works and arts and culture.”   Do you know how to hack into any computer security system on the planet? Make a phone call. It’s called “Social Engineering”. To be blunt, they can go (insert colorful metaphors here) themselves. First off, take a look at Tim Horton’s, Loblaws, Walmart, and a host of other companies. They all have more people working fewer hours, sharing jobs, flex hours, access to government run child care, prenatal leave, make contributions to local governments, repair infrastructure, build for the future… and every worker hates it. Yeah, good ideas, not.   “Respect and support our elders. Ensure secure pensions and provide programmes that address health both physical and mental – and ensure dignity by stopping elder abuse and respecting living wills.”   Yawn, bored yet? I respect my parents, they deserve it. My Mother-In-Law on the other hand deserves to spend the rest of her life in prison. Government can not regulate respect, so stop claiming you can do so. As for living wills, there is case law for that, it’s been done already. (Pensions issue see above)   There was just a little bit more on the issue of Democracy, I am not going to waste my time on it, if you want to know what democracy really is, read Phil’s blog linked above.

The issues they don’t mention:   Illegal Drugs:   The Green Party wants to legalize drugs. ALL OF THEM. They view addiction as a disease that is not the fault of those that are addicted to it. They may want to regulate some of them, make the selling of some of them a criminal offense, or drop all the prohibitions all together.   I want to decriminalize them, not make them legal. More on that some other day.   First Past the Post:   The Greens hate the current voting system, they want to change the current first past the post system to a Single Transferable Vote system. I admit that the first past the post sucks, but after much thought, I really don’t want some nut case political party like the Canadian Nazi Party (wow, another godwin) getting a single seat in government. I’ll keep it the way it is thanks.

Gun Control:
The Greens believe that the only persons who need guns are law enforcement. That there is a major problem with guns being smuggled across the border into Canada, and that Canadians do not believe that they have a right to bear arms.   “The most foolish mistake we could possibly make would be to allow the subject races to possess arms. History shows that all conquerors who have allowed their subject races to carry arms have prepared their own downfall by so doing. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that the supply of arms to the underdogs is a sine qua non for the overthrow of any sovereignty. So let’s not have any native militia or native police. German troops alone will bear the sole responsibility for the maintenance of law and order throughout the occupied Russian territories, and a system of military strong-points must be evolved to cover the entire occupied country.”Adolf Hitler

The Greens like every other left wing nut do not want the common people to own guns because they think we are children, that we need to be lead around on a leash. And I know that at least a few Greens personally that believe more in-line with the above quote. This just doesn’t cut it with me.   – Wolfe

How to sharpen a knife

I just finished reading a post on Wolf Tracks by Shy Wolf, in which he goes into great detail on how to sharpen a knife. The reason he did this post was in reply to a post on M.D. Creekmoore’s survival site.

I really like not only the post, but the fact that Shy went out of his way to point out that idea behind the post came from a question on Creekmore’s site, so in hopes of starting a trend among prepper bloggers, besides the fact that I am packing like a crazed lunatic to move to the farm, and don’t really have time to post on my blog, here is a link to Shy’s post.

Whetting a Blade

enjoy,
Wolfe

New Rules?

This one is a round up, over the last week I have come to the conclusion that there are several things that I should have done differently right at the beginning. If I was to make these lessons into rules for my own life I would make the following into stone. The end result would be to end up being prepared. Call them if you will the ten rules of prepping.

RULE #1

 

Stocking up for disaster, is pointless. What needs to be done is to rotate food supplies, and have a very long roll on it. The other is to get to the point that you live off what you grow and raise yourself. I know this sounds like the same thing as stocking up, but it isn’t, there is a different mind set. Instead of shopping for next week, you are shopping for next year. It takes planning. Therefore the rule would be to buy what you need well in advance, and actually use it.

RULE #2

 

Every time you use something like a band-aid from the first aid kit, take an inventory, you should have more then twice as much as you think you need. This goes for all the things in your house that you use only when you really need it, flash lights, batteries, laundry soap, hand soap, toilet paper, etc.

RULE #3

 

There are things that you can not make your self, the rule here would be to find alternatives, even if you don’t actually make them yourself. Knowing how to replace something is at least in the right direction to doing it yourself, and using the same things that you can make yourself gives less of a culture shock when they cease to be easy to get.

RULE #4

 

Own it, don’t rent it, or buy it on time. It is way better to live in a cheaper out of the way place that you own out right then to buy a place on time. Credit is pure evil, you don’t need it, learn to live without it. This is likely the hardest rule to follow, and the most important. It is because our generation is living on credit in so many ways, that we are facing the worse economic collapse that the history of man has even seen.

RULE #5

Home school. This rule applies even to those without kids. There is something in the way that public school works that allows us to forget things after we leave it. How many of you remember how to do algebra? Don’t think you’ll need it? Your wrong. The first thing I learned after leaving school was that I needed to know french, it was the only class I ever dropped. The summer I spent in France would have been better had I known just a few more phrases. There are so many things we need to learn in order to thrive beyond mere survival that home schooling is the only way to do it. The advantage here is that you cut out the dumbing down of America, just remember to start with yourself, it will help when teaching your kids.

RULE #6

God helps those who help themselves. If that is good enough for God it should be good enough for you. Charity is all well and good, but free hand outs to those who have not learned that there is no such thing as a right to food, clothing and shelter is more harmful to them then nothing. If you want to give for a need, give the need not cash.

RULE #7

You only work for yourself. Any job you get for some one else is ultimately for yourself, so why work for some one else? This isn’t a rule that can be applied in one shot. You have to grow into it, and discover what it is that you can do successfully. The best way I can think of to do this is to cut it up into percentages. If you are working full time for the ABC company, you should add a small percentage of your work week to starting your own business, when that business makes you the same percentage of income as the time it takes to get the income increase the time you spend on it.

RULE #8

There is only two types of people on this planet. You can categorize them into any two labels you want, but what it boils down to is those that you want to know, and those you don’t. Be very strict on who they are, and you have to include everyone around you with no exceptions, into which group they are in. Be goal orientated, if you are always traveling towards your goal of being self-reliant and self-efficient you will meet those on the same road as you.

RULE #9

Good security is sound sleep. It is always better to be prepared for the worse so you can enjoy the best then to be ill prepared and suffer. Having a secure home, which is not easily invaded by evil out law bikers, or nosy neighbors, is the first step to getting a good night sleep. Security isn’t just an alarm system, or a fence. It’s a mind set, not telling some one what your birth day is prevents them from making a copy of your birth certificate, the less some one knows about you and yours the more secure it is from being taken.

RULE #10

Do it yourself, create it yourself, make it yourself, supply it yourself. The less you need the grid, oil, gas, hand outs, welfare checks, a job, health care, the doctor, the repair guy, electricity, new shoes, etc. the less you will need it when it is gone.

– Wolfe

Letter: Ultimate Food Shortage Survival by Jason Richards

Dan …

I got a question for you. For the past five months, I’ve been seriously researching and putting together my own bug-out plan. I’m coming along nicely with my backpacks, and was gonna buy the Jason Richards books from the site for $27 (Ultimate Food Shortage Survival) to pack even lighter, but wanted to get your opinion on it first. I’ve checked reviews online, blogs… seems legit… I can also find the book on Amazon for $10, but he’s offering another 2 or 3 along with it on his website, which look just as interesting. Got any other important reads for someone who’s basically starting out green?

Though I’ve seriously known about the SHTF for over 15 years now, I still feel as though I don’t know anything at all. Your input is gold to me at this point. I have a deep dark sense that we’re all running out of time…

  • Mary

Dear Mary,

I went looking into this set of books, checking out various sites from a Google search, and checked out the original sales site as well. My first impression was, this is a scam. Not a single site I could find in the first three pages of a Google search was a prepper blog, emergency disaster preparedness site, or even a self-reliance related site, they were all marketing sites. My recommendations, don’t buy it. Good products and services, even new, don’t need to swamp the internet with paid reviews, word of mouth is enough to get the ball rolling, especially with products related to the prepper movement, we tell each other everything.

As far as preparing food to make it lighter for a BOB (Bug Out Bag), making your own by dehydrating is the way to go, but first there are a few things to think about.

A BOB is different then a 72-hour-kit.

The purpose of a 72 hour kit is to help you survive until help from somewhere gets to you. This is an OK plan if the disaster, or event is temporary and local, but a trap if it greater then the rescue services can handle.

The purpose of a Bug Out Bag is to get you from where you normally live, to a place where you can take care of yourself. When you put together a BOB, you include enough food supplies to get from Point ‘A’ to Point ‘B’. I have practiced bugging out, and I can give you a few tips. First, make the kit as light as you can. If you can hold the bag straight out with one arm for ten minutes it’s good.

Dehydrated food is the lightest, but your best making it your self, and experimenting with what works for you. We use a NESCO food dehydrator, and jerky maker we picked up on sale at London Drugs. It works great, but a little bit hard to clean. From what I have heard from other preppers by comparing notes, the Excalibur Food Dehydrator (www.excaliburdehydrator.com) is better then the one I have, but costs more.

As to what to dehydrated, I suggest the food you already eat. Since making meals from scratch is both cheaper and healthier, dehydrating it for preserving is just another step, and it is not that hard to learn. There are many sites on the net that can help you learn, and I do suggest Jo’s site first since she tends to post articles about the harder to get right stuff.

http://baconandeggs-scifichick.blogspot.com/p/dehydrating_06.html

As far as any other books that I think should be at the top of the reading list I can name three right away.

  1. How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times by James Wesle, Rawles

  2. The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse by Fernando Ferfal Aguirre
  3. Fannie Farmer Cookbook by Marion Cunningham (A real copy of this book might cost as much as $120 so look on ebay etc for deals)

Best of luck…

  • Wolfe

Changes around us

I have to mention that I totally blame Ferfal for opening my eyes to some of the things that I have started to notice. If I had not started to read his blog it is likely that I would not have noticed a pattern forming around me. Canada is likely to be the next Argentina, maybe even before the States.

There are several things that Ferfal mentions in his blog about the new normal Argentina. One of the first that comes to mind is the Tent Cities that pop up in empty lots, the others are about safety or rather lack of it.

Here in Canada the crime rate is not only climbing, it is becoming a risk even to go to the local mall. Gangs have started to take over the streets, and poverty is getting more common. The number of homeless in Canada must be at an all time high, but I doubt that where it is at now is the highest it will go.

Take note that I am writing this from British Columbia. This province is likely the least hit from the current economic situation, until the Olympics come and go, which means that what happened on Friday is just a example of what is to come.

Friday night was spent like most, watching a movie in front of the idiot box. It was getting late, and I went outside to get some air and do a perimeter check. We live in a sort of dead end in an industrial zone. We have almost no neighbors and the streets are quiet normally.

There are no houses directly across from us, there is just a fourteen foot cement wall that separates our street from the highway. Between the road and the wall is a grassy area, a small cement barrier to prevent trucks from knocking over the fire hydrant. At the other end of the street, there are rows of small industrial shops which have an alley way between the building and the highway. In that alley way, homeless people tend to make camp. Note again, I am not in the downtown core, I live very close to the suburbs, this is not the inner city.

When I went outside I noticed that a couple were casing the house next door. Doug, our only immediate neighbor is hardly ever home. He works in the movie industry, and often has to work nights. When he isn’t working, he is hauling supplies up to his acreage up north, getting ready for the coming crash himself like us. Friday night he had not returned home yet, the lights were off in his house, his car gone.

Because I had gone outside, I believe the couple decided to wait until I had gone back inside and gone to bed. So we parked ourselves in front of the television, in the living room, so we could watch them. And called the police.

The homeless man was obviously to me a crack head. Skinny, dirty, and off center in the manner he spoke, I believed he was high on some sort of drug. The woman was quiet, looked only a little over weight, and just as dirty. They carried with them sleeping bags which they had laid done on the pavement in front of the cement barrier by the fire hydrant. They were planning, it looked like to me, to sleep there if we did not give them a clear opportunity to break into Doug’s place.

The police arrived. The first police car took almost an hour to show up, after it arrived, six more showed up within a few minutes. Then two ambulances.

The woman was in full labor, her water had already broken, she was going to give birth right there on the street in front of our house.

After they had left, I went to the local gas station to get some air. I told Josh what had happened, he’s another Libertarian survivalist in the area, and we chatted for a bit. Doug ended up walking into the store, and we told him. Eventually I found myself laying in bed and thinking about what had happened. And several things occurred to me.

Years ago, I wouldn’t know another single survivalist/prepper in person, let alone almost four that I can think of within walking distance of where I live. Having one live next door was unheard of. Tent cities never happened when I was a child, protests were something of the 60’s and 70’s and had more to do with civil rights then poverty. Gangs in Canada when I was a teenager were a joke, literally. Even the Hell’s Angels were not big news up here. That has all changed.

If a socialist country like Canada can turn the corner towards civil unrest within small suburb, what of the cities when the buying power of the dollar drops through the floor? How many people that are only a single paycheck away from poverty are there here, and what of those that are near the end of the two year limit on welfare, and the one year limit on unemployment? My own uncle is at risk of loosing his entire pension from working over 20 years at the same plant because the auto manufacturing sector has collapsed and has filed for bankruptcy protection. We are not closer to the end of our current way of life, these are the last breathes of life in it.

Lesson Learned: We blind ourselves to how bad things are until it stares us in the face.

– wolfe

Wood Stoves Part 2

You ever notice that if you lite a candle in a cold room that candle isn’t enough to heat up the entire room? I know that sounds kinda obvious, but it is something to remember when buying a wood stove. A single small wood stove with only a 40,000 BTU EPA rating is not going to be enough to heat your entire house in Whitehorse, Yukon. However, it might be enough to heat up your bedroom. (*BTU = British Thermal Units, EPA = Environmental Protection Agency)

If the cost of an outdoor based wood furnace is higher then two wood stoves inside the house that can produce the same amount of heat, and the energy required to fuel it is also less, then your better off getting two wood stoves then some fancy new outdoor wood pellet thing advertised in the back a magazine. By the same token, if the figures are reversed, it might be worth while to look into it more.

The question is how can you tell what you should do?

Believe it or not, this gets really complex when you take into account what you are really dealing with. There are different types of wood stoves, fire places, and wood fired furnaces out there. In addition, they are made with different materials which effect not only their efficiency, but how they are used as well. For example, having a fireplace in a home located in the desert is a good idea. Not only does it provide heat during the cold nights, but can actually help reduce the temperature of the house during the day depending on the type of fire place that is installed.

A antique wood stove which has little in the way of fire brick included in it’s make up, but is made of cast iron instead of steal, has a thermal conductivity rate of approximately 28 Btu/hr^{sq/ft/F/ft} (28 BTU per hour per square foot of Fahrenheit for each foot of distance). Now for an example of this wood stove, let’s load this wood stove with Sugar Maple heartwood (heartwood means the denser inner core of the trunk), which has a moisture content of about 65%, has a MMBtu of about 29.7 per cord. That’s a stack of wood, four feet high, four feet wide and eight feet long. Now you’d have to figure out the fire box size, the physical area you are heating, and perhaps the air flow around the thing in the first place. Fortunately someone has already done all the math for us, maybe you’d also like to make your own.

Even if you manage to figure out the perfect wood stove for your home there are thing you should be aware of before you start. Sometimes there are differences between what the local by-laws/regulations/clearances are and what your insurance requires for your home. Even the manufactures might be short on the size and types of vents that are recommended for regular use, so be sure to contact not only your local authorities and ire departments, but also your insurance broker.

Generally speaking the larger the fire box, the longer the fire itself will last, and there will be more types of wood to burn. Air tights are more efficient, and safer. Installation can be done by you if your handy, but has to be inspected and approved. You will need a ‘slab’ to put it on since heat will be generated even on it bottom. As with any fuel burning stove, you should have a carbon monoxide detector in the room.

Most Preppers have a list of lists, thing they feel they need to gather for just encase SHTF scenarios, if you have a wood stove or fire place, you should add a chimney cleaning kit to this list. You will need to know the diameter of the flu in order to purchase the correct sized wire brush, a flexible handle should also be included in the kit. A flashlight, bed sheets, and duct-tape should also be available if you can to greatly help reduce the clean-up after the clean-up… (Think Mary Poppins folks). A basic screw driver with matching heads for removing any inside pipes so that they can be cleaned outside would also be a plus. One side note… sometimes fire department will offer inspections for free, take advantage of this service.

In between major cleaning you might want to reduce the creosote in the flu, you can toss in a few tablespoons of ‘rock salt’ on to a hot fire. It is the same stuff used in those fire logs to remove the creosote.

Always use dry wood, and never light a fire with flammable liquids. Never burn plastics in your wood stove, first off it’s just dangerous, second it’s illegal. Colored paper, treated wood, painted wood, and even Oleander tree wood or any other poisonous plants. Old industrial palettes are also a bad idea, since they can be a lot older then you think, and been used by any number of chemical companies.

Finally hard woods are the best to burn, they last longer and are cleaner burning with larger BTU ratios.

– Wolfe

Wood Stoves Part 1

I look outside and all I see is snow. I know that for most of you this is not an odd sight to see this time of year, nor does it sound like something that should be an odd thing for a Canadian like myself to suddenly notice. But believe me, it’s odd. We are only a couple of weeks till the first day of spring and this is the first real snow we have seen all year here in the greater Vancouver area. Fourteen years ago we had a similar downfall of snow that ended up caving in our roof while we were just getting ready for the spring run as Caravaners, and although this year there is no risk of that, as a prepper I look out and think about the worse case scenario we could find ourselves in.

For the last six months we have managed to collect over $500 by simply not turning on the furnace, we have used our alternatives instead as a test for what we might need in our preps, and found that it was actually cheaper to use electric heaters rather then the natural gas furnace. Part of that has to do with only heating the room we were in rather then the whole house, we even went to the extent of putting up a curtain across the living room door frame to keep the heat in the room we were using during the day.

I always have loved a good fireplace, but we do not have one in this house. So one of the requirements for being self-reliant on the farm is going to the need for fireplaces and wood stoves. I have been researching wood stoves more the fireplaces because they are more efficient, and would like to pass on some of those things I have learned so far onto you.

One of the first wood stoves was invented by Benjamin Franklin, it’s main advantage over a regular fireplace was a hollow baffle which transferred more heat into the room. It was also not a great seller because it needed to hot enough to create a draft to draw up the gases and smoke through the flu. Improvements over the Pennsylvania fireplace eventually lead to the modern wood stove. Today’s designs are so efficient at burning wood fuel that they often surpass EPA rules.

“The internal design of wood stoves has changed entirely since the EPA issued standards of performance for new wood stoves in 1988. EPA’s mandatory smoke emission limit for wood stoves is 7.5 grams of smoke per hour (g/h) for non-catalytic stoves and 4.1 g/h for catalytic stoves. (Wood stoves offered for sale in the state of Washington must meet a limit of 4.5 g/h for non-catalytic stoves and 2.5 g/h for catalytic stoves.)” – www.epa.gov

Non-catalytic Stoves:

Non-catalytic wood stoves have three main parts a firebox insulation, a large baffle, and pre-heated combustion air introduced through small holes above the fuel in the firebox. The baffle and some other parts of the wood stove will need to be replaced from time to time as they deteriorate with the high heat of efficient combustion. They have less heat output then Catalytic wood stove, but provide better atmosphere.

Catalytic Stoves:

Catalytic wood stoves exhaust their smoke and fumes through a coated ceramic honeycomb inside the stove where they ignite and burn. All of these types of stoves have a lever-operated bypass damper which is opened for starting and reloading. The ceramic honeycomb breaks down over time and needs to be replaced, it should last the average prepper six seasons (10,000 to 12,000 operating hours )as long as the stove is not over fired by burning waste. The ceramics honeycomb is usually coated with the metal palladium. The ceramic is often round, 5¾ inches in diameter, and 2 inches thick. One of the advantages of the Catalytic wood stove is an increase in overall efficiency by 10%, as well as a reduction in creosote production by 20 to 90% and a decrease in air pollution up to 75%. Items that will cause the catalyst reduction in life span to as little as two years include burning trash, coal, paper logs, treated wood, painted wood, and lighter fluid.

My experiment this year has taught me one thing about heating a home in the winter that I wasn’t expecting. This house is old, and is not insulated in any way, no fibreglass in the walls, and very little value to avoid heat loss with what walls we do have. With all the commercials on television about drafts from windows, the lack of draft barriers around our doors, single pane glass in our house, and a host of other things that allow this house to leak heat like a sieve, I thought our my experiment would last a week or two, not pay for Christmas. If we had wood stoves, I believe that the furance would rust in the basement and never be used. And the size of that wood stove, does not have to be the large ones we all dream about in the old fashion kitchen, in fact, I think it would be more efficient to have a few small, even tiny, wood stoves rather then one large one in only one part of the house.

I’m still looking into this idea and learning more. There are different grades of wood that burn more or less efficient the others, I even have charts that I am still going through. So one aspect i have to look for is the amount needed to heat an area, how long a supply will last, and how long it takes to grow. Then there is the whole area in wood stoves that I don’t think can really be learned by books, but has to be actually felt and lived with.

The farm my wife grew up on had a wood furance in the basement of the house, it was not a more modern version of the forced air ones you can find today, but it did the job it was intended. It did lack one thing however, ambiance. There was a farm my family used to visit when I was young, had a classic iron wood stove in the kitchen that I still think about today, it gave the whole farm house a feeling of warmth that had more to do with a feeling then actual heat, that is a major part of why I want a wood stove on the farm, nothing is better then warming your feet by the stove while your mittens dry.

More to come…

– Wolfe

Rotating Cypher Encryption

I have a passion for encryption and security culture issues. I’ve been working on a system to to hide encrypted message, as in hide the fact that it’s encrypted to begin with. I call it stegtext after the photo version which is called steghide.

Recently I’ve been messing around with rotating cyphers, and came up with a really simple way to do it in php.

A simple example of a rotating cypher key encryption program written in php. – wolfe

Message:

We are the hollow men We are the stuffed men Leaning together Headpiece filled with straw. Alas! Our dried voices, when We whisper together Are quiet and meaningless As wind in dry grass Or rats’ feet over broken glass In our dry cellar Shape without form, shade without colour, Paralysed force, gesture without motion; Those who have crossed With direct eyes, to death’s other Kingdom Remember us—if at all—not as lost Violent souls, but only As the hollow men The stuffed men.


Encoded Message:

467 399 465 483 471 403 488 477 475 407 480 488 486 487 491 500 414 492 485 495 396 474 489 421 487 505 493 425 510 499 497 429 513 515 517 503 504 504 504 437 515 508 518 419 486 512 509 523 519 525 519 449 534 530 523 522 538 527 525 539 436 499 529 526 530 543 537 534 533 536 468 539 543 547 548 542 542 475 563 550 562 551 480 564 566 565 549 572 500 487 521 565 555 574 493 471 541 580 578 497 566 581 573 570 570 503 590 584 579 574 577 592 522 511 599 585 583 593 494 572 587 519 607 593 595 606 604 594 608 527 612 608 601 600 616 605 603 617 514 570 620 608 540 622 627 616 613 629 546 612 626 617 550 628 621 618 632 628 634 628 634 628 643 644 540 596 647 565 653 640 646 637 570 644 650 573 642 657 665 577 649 661 645 664 665 561 631 667 586 669 653 673 673 785 688 714 594 665 665 666 682 599 679 687 671 685 604 671 688 686 683 678 688 611 683 689 679 698 699 595 659 697 620 700 707 705 624 693 708 716 628 696 699 707 708 698 716 613 614 688 710 704 720 710 642 730 717 729 718 726 733 733 650 721 731 735 731 667 656 740 730 724 728 730 662 750 737 749 738 746 753 753 670 738 751 749 753 760 758 689 656 727 745 763 747 759 773 768 755 755 688 759 769 773 759 762 706 695 767 766 781 783 785 783 771 703 791 778 790 779 787 794 794 711 789 792 798 788 795 795 745 697 698 773 794 802 807 794 726 814 800 808 730 803 797 819 803 735 803 819 817 822 823 810 810 721 799 818 830 819 748 817 823 833 821 820 838 755 825 846 827 842 772 761 846 842 764 833 835 832 852 841 964 867 893 856 774 854 860 849 847 861 780 824 855 861 855 853 865 864 766 839 859 868 861 870 860 864 878 797 883 882 994 897 918 876 874 805 871 891 808 874 886 887 1006 909 930 893 895 901 818 884 903 821 898 902 907 909 804 881 901 908 906 900 910 917 834 918 915 922 914 922 852 841 908 928 928 845 925 925 924 938 828 884 935 853 938 927 925 857 930 938 936 937 941 950 864 942 935 945 846 921 942 940 872 956 958 960 946 947 947 947 880 958 951 961 898 863 854 855


Message:

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was [a] formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. 6 And God said, “Let there be an expanse between the waters to separate water from water.” 7 So God made the expanse and separated the water under the expanse from the water above it. And it was so. 8 God called the expanse “sky.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the second day.


Encoded Message:

751 674 759 748 746 678 745 749 752 755 761 762 758 764 758 688 728 769 759 692 760 776 764 761 781 767 767 700 785 774 772 704 777 775 772 794 778 788 794 712 778 792 783 716 801 790 788 720 790 787 805 808 797 740 705 706 729 748 731 778 812 821 735 820 809 807 739 809 806 824 827 816 745 833 812 831 749 809 816 813 753 824 834 838 834 834 828 843 844 762 828 842 833 766 836 845 849 854 860 784 773 842 840 858 852 856 848 863 864 782 870 849 868 786 866 874 858 872 791 876 865 863 795 879 882 880 869 865 868 871 803 883 875 806 891 880 878 810 879 881 882 894 827 816 882 896 887 820 905 894 892 824 876 906 900 910 902 914 831 911 903 834 874 915 905 838 926 905 924 842 915 923 931 915 929 921 927 921 851 931 939 923 937 856 941 930 928 860 948 927 947 933 947 949 881 846 847 870 890 872 906 952 943 876 916 957 947 880 964 947 956 952 897 886 889 932 958 974 891 976 965 963 977 965 897 964 968 900 977 975 974 976 989 918 909 908 974 988 979 912 997 986 984 998 986 918 1006 985 1004 922 999 997 996 998 1011 942 929 950 931 971 1012 1002 935 1019 1002 1025 939 1024 1013 1007 1027 944 1029 1018 1016 948 1025 1023 1022 1024 1037 954 1042 1021 1040 958 1030 1039 1040 1030 975 964 1030 1044 1035 968 1009 1039 971 1055 1042 1054 1040 1058 1042 1062 1048 1048 981 1066 1055 1053 985 1062 1060 1059 1061 1074 991 1062 1075 1073 1072 996 1081 1070 1068 1000 1069 1067 1085 1079 1083 1075 1090 1091 1023 1010 1032 1012 1052 1093 1083 1016 1084 1083 1095 1096 1090 1090 1023 1108 1097 1095 1027 1104 1102 1101 1103 1116 1033 1036 1103 1101 1126 1050 1041 1040 1106 1120 1111 1044 1129 1118 1116 1048 1117 1115 1133 1127 1131 1123 1138 1139 1057 1130 1128 1060 1128 1127 1139 1140 1134 1134 1067 1070 1147 1143 1142 1144 1157 1088 1077 1076 1110 1156 1147 1080 1165 1154 1152 1166 1154 1086 1174 1153 1172 1090 1160 1178 1162 1172 1168 1174 1168 1110 1099 1165 1179 1170 1103 1188 1177 1175 1189 1177 1109 1197 1176 1195 1113 1191 1194 1198 1195 1191 1197 1191 1315 1218 1239 1208 1197 1195 1127 1198 1202 1212 1214 1216 1133 1202 1200 1225 1151 1116 1117 1140 1163 1142 1176 1222 1213 1146 1186 1227 1217 1150 1234 1217 1226 1222 1167 1156 1159 1202 1228 1244 1161 1246 1235 1233 1247 1235 1167 1234 1238 1170 1236 1250 1173 1243 1263 1256 1242 1256 1262 1249 1181 1248 1252 1268 1272 1255 1256 1266 1189 1274 1263 1261 1193 1281 1260 1280 1266 1280 1282 1200 1285 1281 1203 1287 1274 1286 1272 1290 1274 1294 1280 1212 1300 1279 1299 1285 1299 1218 1289 1302 1300 1299 1223 1311 1290 1310 1296 1310 1243 1232 1231 1255 1233 1285 1314 1236 1276 1317 1307 1240 1318 1307 1311 1313 1245 1330 1319 1317 1249 1319 1339 1332 1318 1332 1338 1325 1257 1323 1337 1328 1261 1345 1332 1344 1330 1348 1332 1352 1338 1338 1271 1356 1345 1343 1275 1363 1342 1362 1348 1362 1281 1367 1361 1352 1354 1368 1287 1372 1361 1359 1291 1361 1381 1374 1360 1374 1380 1367 1299 1370 1383 1381 1380 1304 1389 1378 1376 1308 1396 1375 1395 1381 1395 1314 1380 1382 1396 1404 1388 1320 1394 1406 1337 1324 1358 1404 1395 1328 1402 1414 1331 1419 1398 1417 1335 1419 1416 1352 1339 1364 1341 1381 1422 1412 1345 1413 1412 1424 1425 1419 1419 1352 1437 1426 1424 1356 1426 1446 1439 1425 1439 1445 1432 1364 1367 1449 1442 1457 1383 1372 1371 1405 1451 1442 1375 1460 1449 1447 1461 1449 1381 1469 1448 1467 1385 1455 1473 1457 1467 1463 1469 1463 1405 1394 1460 1474 1465 1398 1483 1472 1470 1484 1472 1404 1492 1471 1490 1408 1486 1489 1493 1490 1486 1492 1486 1610 1513 1534 1503 1492 1490 1422 1506 1493 1492 1505 1505 1496 1429 1498 1496 1521 1447 1434 1413 1404 1405


Given the examples above can you crack the following message?


Encoded Message:

3252 3275 3276 3277 3278 3279 3280 3281 3282 3283 3284 3285 3286 3287 3288 3289 3290 3291 3292 3293 3294 3295 3296 3297 3298 3299 3300 3353 3302 3350 3304 3350 3306 3307 3308 3360 3310 3344 3312 3368 3314 3372 3316 3354 3318 3369 3298 3299 3300 3301 3359 3365 3359 3375 3380 3366 3380 3331 3373 3311 3312 3342 3388 3384 3383 3340 3347 3319 3320 3389 3423 3345 3411 3425 3431 3436 3419 3433 3366 3331 3332 3362 3408 3404 3403 3360 3367 3339 3340 3409 3443 3365 3431 3445 3451 3456 3439 3453 3386 3351 3352 3382 3431 3449 3443 3463 3444 3464 3382 3454 3463 3463 3455 3387 3475 3462 3474 3463 3392 3477 3466 3460 3480 3397 3464 3478 3489 3413 3402 3403 3445 3405 3493 3486 3486 3477 3479 3493 3443 3413 3471 3494 3501 3417 3470 3466 3465 3422 3429 3401 3402 3471 3505 3427 3493 3507 3513 3518 3501 3515 3448 3413 3414 3489 3510 3508 3440 3520 3518 3511 3444 3521 3511 3515 3537 3449 3530 3536 3528 3529 3523 3523 3456 3529 3527 3541 3460 3544 3542 3532 3531 3549 3531 3534 3544 3538 3553 3471 3540 3552 3561 3553 3476 3542 3556 3547 3480 3557 3561 3562 3559 3554 3554 3487 3567 3575 3559 3573 3492 3577 3566 3564 3573 3497 3563 3565 3579 3586 3586 3503 3588 3577 3575 3485 3590 3588 3589 3588 3539 3513 3598 3587 3585 3595 3518 3602 3592 3590 3522 3603 3609 3609 3526 3611 3600 3598 3607 3531 3617 3613 3534 3600 3614 3605 3538 3615 3619 3620 3617 3612 3612 3545 3625 3632 3632 3549 3635 3629 3620 3622 3636 3555 3640 3629 3627 3636 3574 3561 3613 3635 3633 3565 3649 3636 3644 3637 3649 3648 3572 3652 3656 3553 3654 3646 3664 3648 3662 3581 3658 3662 3663 3660 3655 3655 3588 3641 3630 3641 3639 3646 3633 3635 3596 3681 3670 3668 3677 3601 3672 3682 3686 3605 3689 3686 3608 3692 3687 3676 3688 3689 3614 3680 3616 3701 3690 3692 3698 3692 3622 3688 3707 3625 3691 3627 3694 3708 3719 3658 3632 3717 3706 3704 3725 3637 3725 3708 3722 3710 3642 3715 3713 3727 3624 3730 3732 3714 3734 3720 3652 3733 3719 3728 3738 3669 3658 3743 3732 3730 3662 3743 3746 3738 3734 3736 3668 3748 3740 3671 3744 3742 3756 3675 3748 3746 3743 3761 3764 3693 3682 3748 3762 3753 3686 3774 3757 3771 3759 3691 3758 3778 3767 3771 3780 3697 3768 3778 3782 3701 3709 3786 3788 3794 3782 3776 3720 3716 3710 3789 3791 3797 3692 3798 3785 3799 3804 3792 3787 3790 3735 3736 3807 3797 3795 3727 3795 3808 3815 3807 3800 3733 3806 3800 3822 3806 3738 3822 3809 3810 3820 3743 3828 3817 3828 3826 3833 3820 3822 3751 3817 3753 3834 3820 3829 3839 3758 3838 3830 3761 3845 3847 3843 3851 3835 3780 3844 3842 3838 3854 3772 3847 3859 3858 3860 3777 3843 3862 3780 3868 3851 3859 3860 3799 3764 3838 3860 3858 3790 3867 3871 3872 3869 3864 3864 3797 3878 3868 3882 3881 3878 3872 3892 3874 3874 3807 3878 3888 3892 3811 3877 3813 3891 3894 3893 3886 3896 3903 3832 3821 3887 3901 3892 3825 3910 3899 3897 3907 3830 3914 3897 3906 3902 3847 3836 3915 3917 3923 3840 3911 3915 3912 3926 3912 3915 3923 3937 3861 3850 3917 3937 3937 3832 3938 3940 3930 3934 3935 3860 3937 3941 3948 3932 3865 3935 3945 3947 3954 3941 3943 3872 3943 3953 3957 3876 3961 3950 3948 3880 3951 3967 3965 3962 3958 3970 3972 3970 3958 3890 3975 3971 3893 3966 3964 3961 3979 3924 3877 3878 3908 3957 3972 3980 3981 3918 3907 3949 3909 3986 3976 4001 3913 3987 3985 3916 3958 3918 3990 3989 4005 3922 3995 4003 4001 3994 3927 4007 3999 3930 4020 4011 4018 3934 3976 4000 4013 4014 3952 3953 3948 3920 3921 3995 4017 4015 3947 4016 4022 4018 3951 4030 4032 4038 3955 4026 4030 4036 4032 4043 4033 3974 3963 4034 4044 4048 3967 4034 4058 3970 4055 4044 4046 4057 3975 4060 4050 4055 4048 3980 4064 4054 4052 3984 4072 4051 4070 3988 4055 4059 4069 4060 4066 4072 4066 3996 4065 4077 4086 4078 4001 4067 4081 4072 4005 4086 4092 4086 4076 4082 4084 4090 4084 3992 4100 4094 4085 4087 4101 4020 4105 4094 4092 4024 4091 4095 4095 4028 4116 4103 4115 4104 4033 4118 4107 4105 4037 4104 4121 4119 4120 4119 4055 4044 4110 4124 4115 4048 4132 4129 4051 4135 4125 4123 4055 4134 4126 4127 4127 4129 4129 4062 4129 4146 4134 4131 4151 4140 4069 4154 4150 4072 4153 4159 4153 4143 4161 4163 4144 4164 4150 4082 4167 4156 4154 4064 4167 4173 4167 4157 4163 4161 4176 4094 4182 4169 4181 4170 4113 4100 4152 4174 4172 4104 4187 4175 4190 4193 4191 4192 4180 4179 4197 4183 4183 4116 4195 4197 4203 4192 4194 4200 4194 4124 4191 4211 4211 4128 4213 4202 4200 4132 4200 4199 4219 4150 4115 4116 4146 4181 4141 4220 4212 4230 4214 4228 4147 4216 4222 4218 4151 4235 4222 4223 4155 4240 4229 4227 4159 4226 4230 4227 4247 4164 4244 4236 4167 4252 4241 4235 4255 4172 4239 4253 4264 4177 4184 4156 4157 4231 4253 4251 4183 4271 4254 4264 4271 4188 4273 4269 4191 4276 4265 4263 4195 4275 4277 4267 4277 4200 4269 4281 4282 4286 4205 4271 4285 4276 4209 4293 4295 4291 4292 4282 4215 4289 4295 4218 4292 4304 4221 4287 4301 4292 4225 4302 4306 4307 4304 4299 4299 4232 4312 4319 4319 4236 4302 4315 4318 4318 4312 4242 4327 4316 4314 4224 4331 4327 4326 4315 4335 4331 4253 4340 4328 4334 4326 4341 4259 4325 4339 4330 4263 4271 4339 4339 4344 4348 4352 4349 4349 4279 4273 4361 4344 4345 4345 4361 4279 4364 4353 4347 4367 4284 4352 4365 4365 4371 4373 4363 4375 4377 4377 4363 4363 4296 4381 4370 4368 4300 4372 4367 4385 4372 4374 4384 4321 4308 4355 4389 4311 4364 4392 4391 4329 4294 4368 4397 4319 4403 4393 4391 4323 4400 4398 4396 4411 4397 4397 4330 4416 4412 4333 4406 4404 4418 4337 4424 4418 4413 4408 4411 4343 4409 4429 4346 4412 4426 4349 4415 4429 4423 4429 4423 4355 4423 4422 4434 4426 4445 4437 4427 4447 4433 4433 4366 4437 4447 4451 4370 4439 4445 4456 4458 4440 4454 4444 4447 4379 4445 4459 4450 4361 4467 4457 4465 4472 4472 4458 4458 4417 4370 4371 4401 4452 4409 4476 4411 4484 4413 4486 4402 4455 4451 4450 4407 4414 4386 4387 4462 4483 4481 4495 4483 4415 4503 4482 4501 4419 4485 4421 4505 4499 4497 4496 4498 4511 4428 4507 4509 4504 4515 4502 4434 4501 4505 4509 4511 4517 4508 4441 4514 4512 4526 4445 4511 4525 4516 4449 4533 4523 4521 4453 4538 4540 4538 4535 4527 4527 4460 4535 4547 4546 4548 4465 4539 4545 4468 4553 4543 4548 4541 4473 4558 4554 4454 4560 4547 4552 4570 4550 4482 4548 4484 4568 4563 4552 4564 4565 4490 4557 4571 4582 4494 4561 4585 4497 4582 4571 4569 4501 4585 4579 4569 4572 4581 4507 4587 4579 4510 4583 4585 4596 4514 4597 4595 4602 4596 4587 4585 4587 4601 4608 4608 4525 4591 4605 4596 4529 4595 4613 4614 4602 4617 4619 4536 4609 4611 4622 4540 4611 4618 4616 4615 4617 4630 4561 4526 4527 4557 4603 4624 4622 4636 4624 4557 4557 4599 4559 4637 4634 4633 4635 4648 4565 4630 4632 4632 4569 4654 4643 4651 4658 4645 4647 4660 4577 4657 4649 4580 4665 4654 4648 4668 4585 4653 4663 4667 4672 4659 4675 4606 4593 4649 4667 4661 4681 4598 4688 4679 4686 4602 4669 4673 4674 4684 4607 4676 4688 4683 4689 4683 4613 4687 4693 4594 4701 4690 4688 4702 4690 4653 4630 4602 4603 4633 4673 4707 4713 4702 4704 4710 4704 4648 4642 4614 4615 4645 4685 4719 4725 4714 4716 4722 4716 4647 4647 4692 4728 4729 4726 4652 4718 4738 4655 4745 4736 4743 4741 4660 4733 4727 4741 4732 4748 4680 4667 4701 4747 4738 4671 4748 4752 4753 4750 4676 4742 4762 4679 4769 4760 4767 4765 4684 4762 4765 4772 4772 4761 4704 4691 4747 4765 4759 4779 4696 4738 4749 4699 4784 4773 4767 4787 4682 4789 4788 4792 4775 4784 4741 4718 4690 4691 4721 4756 4716 4785 4797 4797 4784 4805 4722 4798 4802 4804 4813 4739 4728 4794 4815 4809 4816 4747 4741 4713 4714 4744 4793 4808 4816 4817 4754 4743 4785 4745 4821 4825 4827 4836 4764 4751 4793 4837 4818 4838 4756 4831 4823 4836 4773 4774 4846 4835 4829 4849 4830 4850 4768 4856 4842 4836 4856 4773 4847 4859 4776 4850 4861 4793 4780 4819 4861 4865 4868 4874 4786 4871 4861 4866 4859 4874 4792 4834 4858 4881 4865 4797 4881 4864 4873 4869 4802 4876 4874 4783 4895 4886 4893 4809 4878 4884 4880 4891 4878 4899 4816 4893 4887 4903 4820 4905 4894 4888 4908 4825 4900 4892 4905 4829 4895 4907 4911 4911 4903 4835 4877 4901 4906 4839 4923 4916 4915 4921 4844 4934 4925 4932 4862 4849 4890 4916 4930 4921 4854 4932 4925 4857 4942 4931 4925 4945 4862 4946 4951 4938 4950 4934 4940 4883 4877 4849 4850 4925 4946 4944 4876 4960 4965 4952 4964 4948 4954 4883 4956 4964 4972 4956 4970 4958 4958 4891 4965 4971 4894 4979 4968 4966 4898 4964 4973 4983 4915 4916 4988 4977 4975 4907 4988 4978 4992 4984 4988 4913 5001 4980 4999 4917 4986 4988 5003 5001 4991 5005 4989 5009 4995 4940 4941 4907 4908 4938 4977 5022 4935 4935 4980 5016 5017 5014 4940 5007 5011 5015 5017 5023 5014 4947 5037 5028 5035 4963 4952 5018 5039 5033 5040 4958 4965 4937 4938 5013 5034 5032 4964 5044 5042 5035 4968 5045 5035 5039 5061 4973 5061 5047 5049 5059 5054 5048 5048 4981 5064 5062 5069 5063 5054 4999 4988 5054 5068 5059 4992 5076 5072 5060 5080 5064 5070 5068 5068 5001 5074 5072 5086 5005 5089 5082 5081 5091 5094 5094 5012 5092 5099 5099 5016 5096 5088 5019 5088 5086 5100 5094 5093 5107 5040 5027 5080 5101 5099 5009 5108 5098 5102 5035 5106 5113 5107 5107 5040 5120 5120 5043 5128 5117 5115 5047 5121 5127 5133 5135 5117 5131 5138 5067 5056 5140 5125 5141 5125 5138 5128 5139 5133 5133 5066 5152 5148 5069 5154 5143 5141 5073 5146 5148 5147 5149 5078 5145 5159 5146 5164 5151 5097 5155 5155 5165 5155 5158 5102 5091 5157 5171 5162 5073 5164 5170 5181 5164 5180 5181 5171 5168 5186 5174 5174 5107 5187 5195 5179 5193 5112 5186 5198 5129 5094 5095 5158 5192 5203 5121 5187 5208 5202 5209 5126 5175 5207 5205 5206 5220 5132 5216 5218 5214 5215 5205 5138 5222 5225 5223 5222 5225 5217 5228 5215 5215 5148 5214 5150 5228 5231 5230 5223 5233 5240 5169 5158 5224 5238 5229 5162 5247 5236 5234 5244 5167 5234 5251 5249 5246 5241 5173 5247 5253 5260 5256 5178 5244 5180 5252 5251 5261 5268 5261 5255 5165 5264 5254 5275 5262 5264 5207 5172 5173 5203 5237 5263 5277 5271 5201 5286 5275 5273 5205 5272 5286 5297 5221 5210 5278 5277 5291 5278 5299 5216 5258 5218 5297 5289 5307 5291 5305 5224 5301 5295 5292 5310 5307 5230 5296 5310 5322 5318 5307 5309 5315 5309 5270 5240 5274 5315 5321 5308 5329 5246 5319 5317 5249 5330 5327 5317 5342 5323 5323 5256 5334 5327 5259 5344 5343 5335 5330 5339 5348 5244 5336 5346 5348 5355 5342 5344 5273 5350 5348 5351 5346 5278 5363 5352 5346 5366 5283 5354 5364 5368 5287 5365 5358 5290 5375 5371 5293 5360 5364 5296 5373 5377 5378 5375 5374 5380 5374 5304 5384 5391 5391 5308 5379 5389 5393 5312 5385 5387 5392 5316 5383 5407 5319 5404 5393 5395 5406 5324 5409 5399 5404 5397 5360 5330 5365 5417 5417 5334 5414 5412 5405 5316 5409 5419 5420 5418 5426 5344 5418 5429 5347 5432 5421 5419 5351 5418 5426 5425 5426 5425 5440 5442 5359 5430 5440 5441 5439 5447 5365 5450 5439 5437 5451 5439 5371 5445 5456 5388 5375 5411 5442 5456 5443 5464 5381 5458 5452 5449 5467 5464 5387 5453 5467 5390 5470 5468 5461 5394 5463 5475 5468 5398 5477 5469 5488 5402 5487 5486 5478 5473 5482 5491 5421 5388 5476 5495 5413 5498 5487 5485 5417 5501 5484 5509 5494 5500 5494 5424 5498 5509 5441 5428 5463 5515 5515 5432 5510 5523 5435 5507 5516 5517 5507 5518 5510 5525 5526 5456 5445 5518 5516 5448 5527 5519 5537 5521 5535 5454 5535 5532 5522 5547 5542 5460 5545 5534 5532 5541 5465 5531 5543 5541 5544 5539 5483 5472 5557 5561 5554 5476 5545 5543 5568 5563 5493 5460 5548 5562 5553 5486 5559 5567 5576 5490 5564 5575 5493 5559 5495 5562 5576 5566 5588 5500 5585 5581 5503 5579 5583 5585 5594 5508 5596 5582 5576 5596 5577 5597 5515 5583 5596 5595 5592 5598 5592 5553 5523 5564 5594 5526 5591 5608 5598 5595 5613 5615 5533 5618 5614 5536 5612 5616 5618 5627 5541 5616 5628 5627 5629 5546 5619 5627 5636 5528 5627 5631 5631 5625 5555 5628 5626 5558 5626 5625 5639 5562 5647 5643 5647 5643 5636 5646 5653 5570 5648 5641 5573 5640 5644 5646 5656 5660 5648 5580 5622 5582 5654 5653 5669 5586 5664 5677 5589 5658 5656 5670 5661 5663 5677 5596 5682 5678 5611 5600 5666 5680 5671 5604 5677 5675 5607 5683 5687 5689 5698 5695 5613 5687 5685 5616 5689 5687 5597 5687 5686 5700 5623 5701 5690 5701 5696 5628 5708 5715 5715 5632 5717 5713 5635 5716 5722 5722 5639 5717 5710 5642 5722 5714 5715 5646 5717 5727 5731 5650 5716 5652 5730 5727 5733 5741 5741 5727 5659 5739 5743 5662 5740 5729 5740 5735 5667 5745 5738 5670 5747 5737 5758 5745 5747 5688 5677 5751 5763 5744 5764 5682 5748 5760 5761 5686 5755 5767 5776 5768 5669 5757 5764 5759 5768 5774 5697 5763 5777 5768 5701 5743 5703 5771 5770 5784 5771 5792 5709 5782 5784 5796 5713 5786 5788 5793 5717 5783 5719 5796 5794 5789 5798 5738 5725 5767 5727 5793 5802 5808 5795 5816 5733 5802 5814 5809 5815 5809 5739 5817 5830 5742 5811 5829 5829 5835 5747 5814 5838 5750 5835 5824 5818 5838 5755 5822 5836 5847 5771 5738 5826 5840 5831 5764 5849 5838 5832 5852 5833 5853 5771 5856 5845 5843 5775 5820 5856 5860 5847 5844 5864 5782 5867 5866 5870 5870 5859 5800 5789 5861 5870 5871 5861 5872 5864 5879 5880 5798 5874 5878 5880 5889 5886 5818 5805 5857 5887 5873 5891 5879 5811 5896 5885 5883 5815 5898 5896 5886 5819 5885 5899 5890 5823 5907 5905 5899 5903 5897 5807 5914 5903 5901 5833 5901 5907 5909 5913 5906 5851 5840 5906 5925 5843 5928 5917 5915 5847 5887 5928 5929 5919 5852 5887 5933 5934 5931 5857 5941 5924 5949 5944 5876 5863 5905 5929 5943 5867 5933 5869 5946 5936 5961 5946 5952 5946 5876 5962 5958 5879 5963 5954 5960 5883 5949 5963 5954 5887 5971 5974 5960 5961 5961 5975 5967 5973 5967 5897 5968 5978 5982 5879 5987 5986 5904 5971 5985 5991 5980 5921 5910 5952 5912 5988 5992 5994 6003 5931 5918 5959 5989 5985 6005 5923 5994 6010 6002 6003 5928 6008 6000 5931 6016 6005 6003 5935 5983 6013 6006 5939 5991 6008 6024 6008 6028 6012 6018 5959 5948 6015 6035 6035 5952 6029 6019 6042 6039 5970 6023 5972 6037 6030 5963 5963 6036 6034 6030 6050 5968 6046 6059 5949 6051 6060 6052 5975 6044 6046 6043 6047 5980 6064 6055 6066 6068 6054 6068 6051 6071 5989 6056 6070 6081 6005 5994 6075 6075 6076 6080 5999 6084 6073 6075 6081 6075 6017 6006 6072 6086 6077 6010 6052 6012 6078 6087 6093 6080 6101 6018 6090 6099 6105 6022 6107 6096 6094 6026 6099 6097 6094 6112 6115 6032 6117 6113 6035 6112 6102 6121 6111 6018 6113 6115 6120 6056 6045 6129 6126 6125 6118 6122 6130 6139 6067 6054 6092 6142 6126 6140 6148 6060 6145 6135 6140 6133 6065 6107 6067 6144 6138 6154 6071 6144 6146 6151 6075 6155 6147 6148 6091 6080 6158 6171 6083 6151 6164 6164 6170 6155 6162 6159 6169 6159 6162 6094 6163 6175 6166 6181 6099 6172 6186 6184 6187 6104 6182 6175 6107 6191 6188 6122 6089 6177 6191 6182 6115 6185 6203 6187 6201 6209 6121 6206 6196 6201 6194 6126 6168 6128 6201 6203 6215 6132 6205 6207 6212 6136 6214 6227 6139 6219 6217 6210 6143 6216 6214 6211 6229 6232 6149 6227 6230 6235 6237 6154 6221 6238 6226 6223 6234 6243 6175 6162 6218 6233 6241 6242 6180 6233 6182 6257 6240 6248 6249 6186 6175 6253 6242 6256 6157 6264 6253 6247 6267 6184 6258 6269 6187 6254 6268 6272 6269 6192 6272 6264 6195 6283 6276 6275 6264 6278 6201 6275 6286 6204 6284 6276 6207 6278 6278 6297 6211 6280 6278 6303 6298 6216 6282 6296 6287 6220 6291 6307 6299 6300 6225 6305 6297 6228 6313 6312 6310 6317 6299 6310 6304 6248 6237 6303 6322 6240 6325 6314 6312 6222 6296 6313 6329 6321 6329 6334 6336 6334 6322 6254 6338 6321 6346 6341 6271 6260 6326 6340 6331 6264 6306 6266 6349 6337 6336 6345 6350 6350 6273 6347 6359 6340 6360 6278 6362 6359 6295 6282 6323 6353 6349 6362 6363 6288 6369 6366 6356 6381 6293 6366 6374 6375 6372 6367 6388 6300 6385 6374 6376 6387 6305 6375 6393 6377 6387 6383 6389 6383 6325 6314 6325 6294 6382 6396 6387 6320 6380 6332 6323 6375 6404 6411 6411 6400 6416 6399 6414 6416 6402 6416 6413 6336 6407 6417 6421 6340 6348 6407 6413 6428 6414 6428 6425 6427 6428 6428 6358 6413 6353 6395 6419 6432 6433 6358 6433 6445 6444 6446 6363 6430 6434 6366 6446 6434 6445 6439 6440 6443 6442 6442 6375 6460 6456 6378 6456 6445 6456 6451 6383 6456 6458 6463 6365 6475 6468 6472 6466 6404 6393 6478 6474 6409 6474 6477 6481 6482 6480 6489 6415 6404 6489 6485 6407 6488 6494 6488 6484 6495 6485 6414 6487 6489 6494 6432 6419 6461 6505 6486 6506 6424 6502 6499 6498 6500 6513 6519 6431 6504 6498 6516 6503 6436 6521 6517 6439 6517 6506 6517 6512 6444 6517 6519 6524 6448 6536 6529 6533 6527 6431 6505 6520 6540 6542 6540 6527 6525 6550 6545 6475 6464 6552 6538 6536 6546 6469 6535 6547 6548 6473 6558 6547 6545 6477 6544 6558 6569 6564 6482 6556 6567 6485 6558 6552 6574 6562 6568 6562 6492 6565 6573 6571 6569 6565 6563 6588 6512 6501 6568 6588 6588 6505 6578 6576 6508 6581 6575 6595 6581 6596 6514 6602 6595 6599 6593 6519 6597 6600 6604 6592 6502 6609 6598 6592 6606 6529 6602 6600 6532 6605 6599 6619 6605 6620 6538 6604 6618 6630 6626 6615 6617 6623 6617 6547 6617 6625 6633 6620 6564 6553 6619 6633 6624 6557 6599 6623 6646 6630 6562 6602 6611 6617 6566 6651 6647 6569 6638 6650 6572 6656 6653 6652 6645 6577 6657 6649 6580 6658 6671 6583 6652 6670 6670 6676 6588 6655 6679 6591 6664 6666 6671 6607 6574 6676 6680 6599 6641 6665 6678 6679 6604 6671 6675 6607 6692 6681 6679 6611 6694 6698 6687 6693 6681 6701 6691 6698 6698 6621 6701 6693 6624 6709 6698 6696 6628 6696 6702 6704 6708 6701 6648 6642 6614 6615 6606 6607

A SEARCH FOR HAVEN

A SEARCH FOR HAVEN

by Dan Wolfe

copyright 2011
all rights reserved

“See I told you they knew where it was, this guy called Columbus sailed a boat to it!”, said Jimmy as he ran into the room carrying a large dusty book.

“What are you talking about?”, Jenny was annoyed again with her little brother, every time they came across a building filled with books he just had to explore it. Time would be better spent looking for rabbits, and rabbits didn’t eat books!

“It’s a history book, or at least I think it is. Some of the words are to hard for me, but there was this guy who sailed to the end of the world, I knew they had found it and left!”, Jimmy was excited, which meant he didn’t listen to well to his sister. “Do you know what that means Sis! We can find the end of the world, all we need is a boat!”

Jenny sat down on the floor and looked up at her brother, taking him by both shoulders, and tried really hard to speak softly, “Jimmy, there is no way for us to get to the end of the world, if there was, they would have come back for us.”

Jimmy’s face turned red, “THAT’S NOT TRUE! MOM AND DAD DIDN’T TELL THEM WE WEREN’T SICK! THEY THOUGHT WE DIED!”, crying he pulled away, and ran out of the room, still holding the book.

She sat there thinking, there was no way they were leaving today, he’d hide away somewhere, and spend the rest of the day reading. It was times like this that she wished Uncle Nick was still alive. He would have been able to explain to Jimmy that the end of the world was just to far away, as far away as where you were born he used to say. But only if it was possible, she knew why Jimmy wanted to go there, it had everything. Magic still worked there, it made the sun shine at night when you were scared of the dark, it could keep you warm in winter without a fire. It glowed, it sparked, it was powerful.

There was two kinds of magic, white magic and black magic. Before everyone left for the end of the world, they all used Black Magic.

Black Magic could do anything, and that was the problem, it made it so easy to have a fun life that people forgot stuff, even simple things like how to catch a rabbit. She could see why, Uncle Nick said you could open a box that used black magic and inside it would be cold as ice, and there was always food in the box, then you put the food in another black magic box, and it would cook it for so fast you couldn’t even sing the star song before it was done. If you could do that, why would you learn how to catch a rabbit? Everything was made with Black Magic, it even grew plants you could eat, and it move the plants to the box with the ice in it.

Uncle Nick said they should have used White Magic instead, Black Magic made you sick, it made the Earth sick, you had to find the Black Magic in the ground by digging holes down to it, White Magic came from the sun. But using White Magic was harder, so people just used Black Magic instead.

She remembered when everyone left. Their were people in the streets holding signs tell them where to go, “The End Of The World”, everyone was yelling, and scared. Uncle Nick explained they were all afraid they’d be left behind, that they wouldn’t make it to the end of the world.

She once ask her uncle what it was like beyond the end of the world, and he just smile. He said it was a lot like where they were now.

Mom and Dad had died because of Black Magic, it made you sick. It also kept you alive. Black Magic made the food, and Black Magic made a medicine called In-Soul-Lens. The Food made you sick because it didn’t use White Magic to grow, but the In-Soul-Lens made you feel better and kept you alive.

To be continued … – Wolfe

Pandemics (Something for Everyday Inklings)

This blog post is a bit of reverse self-promoting, hosting costs for this site are covered via project wonderful, and I really appreciate any incoming links. It turns out that like Hollow Men there is another story in the works about the end of the world, and the author is keeping a blog about her progress over at Everyday Inklings, I’m on her research list . It turns out that I was just in the middle of doing some research on the health care of farm animals, in fact I just picked up a book over at the bookstore about it. (“Keeping Livestock Healthy” US Dept. Agriculture 1942)

I was also looking for something else to write about, thinking to much about the farm will get me target fixated on it, and I’ll miss an opportunity somewhere else. So I noticed that there have been a few leads into this site from Everyday Inkings, and went to look. One of the keywords I noticed in her posts were ‘pandemic’, and I suddenly realized I’ve missed thinking about preparing for one, not for ourselves as far as humans go, have the hepa filter masks in the basement, but for the animals on the farm. So much for not getting targeted on the farm.

It wasn’t to long ago that British Columbia did a cull of all the farm fowl in the province, trying in vain to avoid a flu like pandemic as a result of a chicken virus (avian influenza). So what I’ve been thinking about since reading Sarah’s Blog is what about the other animals, especially pigs?

Pandemics are started as a result of one of the following factors. Either an antigenic drift, or an antigenic shift in the influenza virus family. A pandemic in an antigenic drift would only be a pandemic in the legal sense of the word, in fact they hold such a smaller risk we use another name ‘epidemic’, as in a large percentage of the population would come down with the flu, but there would likely be enough similarities in the the surface of the antigens with others that the population has encountered before that we would have the a close enough match of antibodies to fight it off, an example would be a bad summer flu that is going around the office, but on a world wide scale. I wouldn’t want to say that hardly anyone would die from such an outbreak, but I equally doubt it that the CDC would classify it as a civilization ending event, since these tend to happen every year. But by contrast, an antigenic shift, would be a much larger change in the surface of the antigen, and our immune system would have a real problem with it. These happen on average every ten to fifty years, and we are way overdue, these are the ones which we fear the most.

Our immune system works by a hit, and miss method. Our T-Cell produce white cells in response to encounters with foreign bodies in our systems, such as our blood stream. The T-cell literally has to bump into a virus before it can produce the correct white cell to fight off what ever it is that needs to be taken care of. If the genetic information is already with the T-Cell on how to fight off a certain foreign body, the response is rather quick, and the infection is usually fought off before we even know we are sick. This is how most immunization shots work, they literally inject the virus, or something with a similar ‘surface’ into the bloodstream for our T-Cells to learn how to fight it off. Vaccines usually contain dead versions of a virus, same surface, no inside parts, so that our body’s immune system can learn, it works great as a defense tool, except in the case of AIDS/HIV which attacks the T-Cells directly.

All mammals have the same set up for an immune system, we all evolved from the same successful experiment by mother nature. Unfortunately, parasites, bacteria, pests, and weeds evolved at the same rate as humans did, each competing with each other for dominance over the Earth. Parasites, the major carriers of viruses, and other nasties, have pretty much beaten us at this game, we are not at the top of the food chain as most believe, parasites far out number humans, and I’m willing to bet, pretty much out number everything else on this planet as well.

It is a mis-understanding that the Black Plague was spread by rats, it wasn’t, not technically at any rate, rather it was spread by fleas on the backs of rats. Rats themselves were immune to the Black Plague, and that is why they were able to spread the disease. But not all mammals are immune to diseases which are harmful to humans, pigs share similarities in immune response to us to such a degree that anything which is a health risk to them, is generally a health risk to us. But worse still is the fact that they are often housed physically near other animals, and this runs the risk of a cross-over between species for a disease via a parasite.

An example of which could be imagined like so …

A farmer has a few pigs, which he houses in the same barn as his chickens, the chickens get sick with the latest chicken pandemic flu. This flu the chickens have isn’t actually a threat to humans in itself, and in it’s current form. However, fleas will suck the blood from any warm blooded creature, chicken included, the sub-species of flea may prefer cats over dogs, but if the farm has neither the chicken will do. Now our little nemesis the flea in case, may also prefer to use a pig over a chicken, when neither cat nor dog happen by, and spreads the flu to the pigs. If, and this a big if, the pigs get sick, we humans might have a very big problem. This is why as a survivalist, keeping farms animals healthy also means keeping them separated.

Oh, just for the record, the cross-over between species risk can have nothing to do with whether the animals in question are still breathing or not, so if you butcher your own meat, NEVER MIX BLOOD, seen or unseen. Use separate boards for fish, meat per species, and vegetables, and wash completely.

Even in this pig and chicken example, not everything is there for a pandemic to start, a flu like virus that can pass from one species to another, isn’t enough to cause a pandemic. First, it has to be new, something our immune system doesn’t have a defense against, if the virus isn’t new, a major antigen shift is required so that as far as our immune systems are concerned it appears to be new. The odds of which are liken to winning the lottery, but someone always wins the lottery eventually, even with mutually exclusive odds. The infection has to effect humans, getting a virus introduced via a cut in the bloodstream is only bad if the virus can propagate, and do so which make the host seriously ill. Then lastly, it has to be able to be passed from human to human, or from source to humans, easily. If I including a pandemic as a major plot feature in a story I was writing like Sarah, I would have to choose whether the virus came from an natural source, or if it was man made. The scary bit is, made man viruses might be easy to produce then we first thought.

Killing the agent of infection is a bit tricky, and this is where my recent interest in the matter returns me to the subject of the farm. We use to attack harmful agents with bleach in our suburban homes, but this isn’t always the best and only solution on the farm.

Disinfectants vary in their ability to kill against various germs, bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa. For example, house hold food grade vinegar will kill the foot-and-mouth disease virus, but nothing to the virus which causes Johne’s disease in livestock. Most house hold and industrial detergents will do little against bacterial spores related to tetanus, blackleg, botulism, and anthrax. (Formaldehyde works against spores, but who wants cancer?) I personally recommend a solution of 2% Lye to water, just remember to add the Lye to the water, not the other way around. You also best to fight the parasites which are most likely to spread viruses, such as fleas, tapeworms, and a host of others.

That’s just a start into the required research needed to protect the animals on the farms, good thing I’m planning to plant the trees first.

Wolfe

Fire Proofing

Army Pvt. 1st Class Lucas Ternell, a volunteer firefighter, and a member of the 20th Military Police Company, Maryland National Guard, puts out a small debis fire in the yard of a house fire in Salisbury, Md., Aug. 27, 2011. Ternell was aboard Rescue 16, which was one of several fire and rescue engines that reported to the fire inside a residential neighborhood. Guard members and civilian first responders are providing area support during the Hurricane Irene response. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Darron Salzer)(Released)
Army Pvt. 1st Class Lucas Ternell, a volunteer firefighter, and a member of the 20th Military Police Company, Maryland National Guard, puts out a small debis fire in the yard of a house fire in Salisbury, Md., Aug. 27, 2011. Ternell was aboard Rescue 16, which was one of several fire and rescue engines that reported to the fire inside a residential neighborhood. Guard members and civilian first responders are providing area support during the Hurricane Irene response. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Darron Salzer)(Released)

Fire Proofing

We had a house fire a few years ago, and as I continue to pack for the move to the farm (96 days to go), I am amazed at the amount of junk we have managed to gather since then. Prepping is all about being prepared for disaster, that includes personal disasters such as a house fire. Making sure you have fire alarms, and fire extinguishing equipment that meets safety standards is vital to being prepared. But, if your like me, there are two things that occur to me in being prepared against a house fire. First, knowing how to make your stuff, and second, fire proof the hell out of everything.

So, the most common form of fighting a fire is either water and/or baking soda. It is important to remember, and to teach your children, that you never put water on a grease or oil fire, it will make it worse! Baking Soda should be placed beside the stove in the kitchen at all times, enough to not only put out a fire, but also more then is needed on top of that for baking, because you know that someone is going to use it for that.

Fire can be put out by removing one of three things. Either the fuel the fire is using to spread, Oxygen it is using for combustion, or heat it uses to maintain the reaction. Mason Sand mixed with Sodium Bicarbonate (ratio 3:1) will remove oxygen and cover any fuel, good for the horses’ stables.

Did you know that you can fire proof paper? It’s a simple recipe. Take one cup of Ammonium Sulfate (Mascagnite for you rock hounds out there), six tablespoons of Boric Acid (the same stuff you use to kill insects), 4 tablespoons of Borax (that’s your grandmothers laundry soap), and three cups of water. Mix the ingredients, and then either dip the paper into the mix, or brush it on. It needs several coats, so let each layer dry out first.

If your thinking of doing the same to your raincoat or something else made out of synthetic fabrics all you need is Boric Acid. By the way, for you preppers down in Nevada, Boric Acid can be found in it’s natural state (colemanite), and might be something to stock up on for long distance bartering. For the rest of us, we’ll have to figure out a way of distilling it from fruit. As for fire proofing synthetic fabrics just mix one cup of Boric Acid (1 US cup = 236.588238 ml) into one gallon of water (1 gallon = 3.785 liters). Soak the fabric, and wring out, then hang up to dry. Redo after washing. If you know how many gallons is in your washing machine during the rinse cycle this might work as well.

I’m a total classic camper, I use the old fashion Coleman lamps and stoves, and still have one of those old canvass tents, something I am likely not going to be packing for the farm. But I will likely keep my eye out for another one, or better yet, make one myself. The cotton canvass is a classic textile, it’s been used for almost a hundred years for those world famous 1950’s tents. Sleeping in a tent made of that thick fabric is better then staying at a holiday inn in my book. If you want to fire proof classic textiles like this you should get your hands on some Ammonium Phosphate (phosphoric acid with ammonia, do not try to make at home) and Ammonium Chloride (KEEP AWAY FROM ZINC!). Get a plastic bucket, not a zinc coated one, and put in 48 fluid ounces of water, and mix in half a cup of Ammonium Phosphate, and one cup of Ammonium Chloride. Soak your tent in the buck for at least ten minutes, then wring it out and hang up to dry. Retreat after it rains.

Every year, houses burn down during the Christmas season. Part of the tradition of Christmas in our family is getting a real Christmas Tree, part of the hazard of that is the risk of a house fire from the tree. Non-LED lights get hot, to many lights on the same circuit can cause the electrical wires to over heat, and then there is the fireplace giving off sparks, and maybe you have to use a candle or two if the power goes out during an snow storm. You give yourself a little more safety by fire proofing your Christmas tree with some basic mixing in the water you use to keep it green. Get your hands on some Ammonium Sulfate, more of your grandmother’s laundry soap (Borax), and Boric Acid. Mix up a batch in four liters of water (about a jug of milk), two tablespoons of Borax, half cup of Boric Acid, and a full cup of Ammonium Sulfate. Mix, and then spray the tree down with the mix, and the rest to the water reservoir under the tree in the stand.

If your looking for land like my family, there is always the option to build your own home. No home is 100% protected from all things that can happen, not even your dream fallout or bomb shelter, but a little extra added protection is always welcome. You can add some fire proofing qualities to the beams of your house yourself by mixing up a batch of chemicals you can get at any industrial supply. What you will need is Zinc Cloride (same stuff we used to make smoke bombs as kids), Ferric Cholride (check electronic supply stores, it’s used for etching circuit boards), Boric Acid (can be bought at some home improvement stores), Borax (check your local grocery store). Mix in these chemicals directly into 2 quarts of water, about half a cup of Zinc Cholride, a quarter cup of Ferris Chloride, 3 tablespoons of Boric Acid, and 3 tablespoons of Ammonium Phosphate. Use the mix like you are painting the beams, do four coats for best results. Be careful with the Ferris Cholride, it’s slightly toxic so use rubber gloves.

Lastly what would a post about DIY fire proofing be without home made fire extinguishing liquid? Your going to need Sodium Carbonate (try to get ‘washing soda’ rather then ‘baking soda’ if you can there exactly the same, but the washing soda is cheaper), Alum (Yes the same stuff your wife gets for cooking that you steal to trap bugs in), Borax, Potassium Carbonate (commanly known as Potash), Sodium Silicate (also known as waterglass, you can make this by baking soda ash and sand in a kiln if your a ceramic artist). It is important to start with the Sodium Silicate (waterglass), mix two cups of sodium carbonate into the waterglass, then add one cup of Alum, three quarter of a cup of Borax, and one quarter of potash. Mix it evenly, then three cups of the result into one gallon of water. Pour this into a hand sprayer, like the ones used for spraying crops with insecticides. It needs a coarse nozzle. WARNING: Potash is toxic (internally). Waterglass is an irritant, avoid skin contact.

If you liked this post on DIY Fire Proofing, you’d love the book I used to discover all these and more.

The Formula Manual by Norman H. Stark [ Third Edition ] Stark Research Company

– Wolfe

After the Olympics

“I have six locks on my door all in a row. When I go out, I lock every other one. I figure no matter how long somebody stands there picking the locks, they are always locking three.”–Elayne Boosler

Well, some how we managed to survive the Vancouver Winter Olympics of 2010, which I was hoping to completely avoid by moving back east before it started, well the move is still coming. When this event was first announced I was part of a research team hired by Chris Shaw to investigate one small aspect of it, namely a little unknown company called Millennium Developments. This was just before I left the left so to speak, and was still involved with that circle of people who were connected with Vancouver Indymedia, and the Green Party.

My issues with the Olympics back then were relatively simple, in fact it could be boiled down to just one thing. I didn’t want to pay for them. People who try to stop something in one area of politics tend to follow the adage, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. This is something that I have learned is a very bad idea, because you may in fact win on one issue, but you will always loose on at least five more.

Out of all the events that took place over the last two weeks, I only paid attention to two. One was the gold win by Maelle Ricker, the other I intentionally avoided till it was over, that being “the” hockey game. (I’m a Soccer Fan)

Now that it is over, I was hoping to avoid writing anything about it on my blog at all until I read this post on democracynow.org, which to warn my fellow preppers is completely left bent.

There was so much in that article that pissed me off I don’t even know where to begin.

First off, “… one of the most devastated communities as a result of the 2010 Olympic Games …”, is a crock of bull shit. The Vancouver East Side is not a community, it’s a Red Light District. It a collection of people who have lost touch with the reality that it takes hard work, determination, self-respect, and individuality to make a go at life. If the people who live in this slumlord haven think they have had it rough during the Olympics, they should say that to the face of those who lived through the Munich massacre. The war cry of these degenerates who beg on the sides of Vancouver Streets, screaming protest slogans, and demanding handouts need to get real about what they are. Chris Shaw who openly supports them should know from his vast knowledge of biology, what kind of people they are when they benefit at the expense of the others. Parasites.

I admit to having been all of the things I just called those that live in the worse section of the city. I was all those things as well, for the same reasons that many are there now, including being one of the socialist self-righteous loud mouths who protested at every turn. The difference between them and me now? I grew up.

Libby Davis, has been around since dropping out of University in the Downtown East Side since I’ve been alive. She claims that they have the right to be there. I agree totally, people have the right to live in slums, high crime rate areas, surround by drug addicts, violence, thieves, welfare bums, and demand that some one else fix it with tax payer money. If it doesn’t get done for them, let them take it out on the elected member of parliament, after all nanny.gov is there to solve all your problems, right? Just remember that no matter what you claim is your right, you don’t get to call it a real natural right unless it applies to every other human being on the planet equally, and a right is not a demand. A right opens opportunity, not a bank account. A right protects you from theft, not allow you to use the government to do your stealing for you just because Revenue Canada has guns.

The truth? The truth is that you do not have any rights that do not stem from the individual. The people of the Vancouver East Side do not have a right to be there unless they actually own it, or have entered into an agreement with those that do by mutual consent. And if they break that agreement they forfeit that right to be there. Dignity has nothing to do with the types of clothes you wear, it has to do earning respect, it’s not free, never has been. If you want good housing, get a job and buy one. If you want parks, and a nice community center, pay for it. If you can not afford these things, if the area you live in is so bad that your life is literally at risk …. MOVE! And please don’t come crying to me saying you can not afford to move, I came here with my family with $40 in my pocket, we WORKED our way across Canada.

Elaine Durocher made the claim in that propaganda piece by Aaron Mate, that the Olympics took money away from the “poor people”, which begs the question, what money? Since when do “poor people” have money that can be taken away? Since when does a poor person have money to pay income tax, property tax, and all the other bloody taxes in this country? The only assumption I can make about Elaine’s claim is that either she is out right lying, or she is talking about the “entitlements” to someones money! Which IMHO makes her a thief!

“ … since the Olympic bid, we’ve seen approximately 1,800 units of market housing and condominiums being built in the Downtown Eastside, while we’ve lost approximately 1,300 units of low-income housing. … “ – HARSHA WALIA

Translation: “ Since the Olympic bid, we’ve seen approximately 1,800 units of high cost housing and condominiums being built and bring in real trade jobs to the Downtown Eastside, while we’ve lost approximately 1,300 units of tax payer supported housing for people who never learned a trade.”

The piece basically goes on and on from there with the main key words being “social housing”, it a bitching piece, and has nothing to do with giving a balanced view, two sides of the issue, it’s nothing more then junk spam on the internet. Made me want to puke.

There was some more thoughts on the missing women, their families/friends showed up for it. Made me think about my parents immediately. When I was on the streets in Toronto, I once got the crap kicked out of me by my future brother in law, (my claim to fame is surviving that one), and my parents got wind of it and came running downtown to rescue me. I have only one question directed to the families of the missing women, in fact I direct it only to those families related to the last half of the women that went missing on the Downtown Eastside, not the first half. As they may not have been completely aware as to how high risk the lifestyle of their family member were at the time. So to the last half, I ask this …. WHERE THE FUCK WERE YOU WHEN THEY WERE ALIVE! ’nuff said.

I work predominantly with women, and I can say, confidence, that approximately 70 percent of women that I know who turn to drugs turn to drugs because of childhood trauma of sexual assault and of child apprehension. And, you know, addictions are a—they’re a symptom of something. They’re not anything in and of themselves. And there’s reasons why people are addicted, why people are drinking, why people are forced into these desperate situations. ” – HARSHA WALIA

Harsha, I know someone that you do not want to meet. My wife. If you made that statement to her I guarantee that she would, for the first time in her life, turn to violence and kick the crap out of you. Which to be honest I would love to see, because if she managed to get past the pain, the fear, and even get up and walk across the street, it would be enough to make my day. But I doubt that it will ever come to that. She will, being more self-controlled then myself, hold herself in check, and drive her scooter past you on the other side, avoiding people like you who make excuses for the weak is something she is better at then me.

She doesn’t even take Aspirin.

There is not one person in all the years I have been on this planet I have met, or read about, or seen on TV, has went through compared to my wife’s childhood. Social workers who give penance to those that have been abused serve them a platter of future heartaches. What this society needs is shift justice, and restitution to the victims, when one infringes on the real rights of others they loose their own. Take a life, loose your own. Yes, I believe in Capital Punishment. I do not believe in it as a deterrent, I believe it is prevention directly to for future victims.

It is important to note at the end of my rant here that none of the problems these people have put themselves into was in anyway related to the Vancouver Winter 2010 Games. (Yes, I am using the copyrighted official names, bite me) But I am still not paying for them, I’m leaving remember?

Enjoy the Eastside Guys, if you thought it was tough now, wait till the bill come in.

Wolfe

Budget and Bills

I sit here today in a frump, (Is that even a word?), thinking about what next I have to do to get going on the things that need to get done. I’m swamped yet again, this time with bills. The biggest disadvantage of living in the city is it’s limitations on what you can do within your own property. And I can see that the biggest disadvantage to living in the country is the travel time required to gather junk at stores in the city.

I’ve started doing a few budgeting tricks, I don’t have a clue where I got them from since it’s been years since I’ve done these things. One of which is using Zip Lock Freezer bags as a wallet in a manner of speaking. I always take out cash from the bank instead of using the ATM card at stores when ever I can, it’s a privacy thing for me. I usually keep my cash and wallet in separate pockets, that way if I loose one, I don’t loose the other. But recently I have wanted to keep better track of where the money is going, so I have been not only keeping cash within a zip lock freeze bag, but also every receipt I get at every till I end up at.

I’ve noticed a few things as a result. I spend a huge amount of cash on food. It annoys the hell out of me, because most of that food could be grown on the farm for free. The other major expense we have is rent. Rent, hydro bills and other monthly bills that soak up the majority of our income could also be avoided by living off the grid debt free on the farm without a mortgage.

There is also one other thing. By living in the city, I am forced to make a certain amount of money every month in order to make ends meet. The daily living costs are higher here for everything compared to living in the country except for maybe fuel costs. Yes, I know that on average the cost of gasoline and diesel are usually cheaper in the country, but since you use more of it I figure it will actually be more, but also since everything else is on average cheaper, the over all costs of living there are reduced.

That has me thinking about my sources of income. Recently I’ve been painting, a lot, and still plugging away at the other sources of my income. I’m basically working myself to the bone, and getting exhausted as a result. With the end in sight somewhere between the end of March and next fall, I am still sticking with it, but I wonder about my future plans for making ceramic textiles such as kitchen tiles on the farm as an extra source of income once we are there.

There is a need to maintain three types of skill sets for WSHTF, the first set, and IMHO the primary important one, is to be a producer of goods. This can include and good which is created out of raw materials, there will always be a need for someone to make a product out of raw materials whether it will be glass, ceramics, metal, or even vegetables.

The second is based in the service industry, doctors, vets, and mechanics fall into this category, anyone who gets paid for doing a service, rather then producing a product. These are always in demand, as are also producers, but in both cases the amount they are in demand changes in the economic season, and recently those changes are getting harder to predict.

The third skill set falls under artisan. They are the skills and talents that are wanted and demanded when things are either going well in the economy, or when people spend money on them because they want to forget how bad things are. They include works of art, entertainment, recreation, and even education.

It is this line of thinking that caused me to take ceramics to the level I did in collage. It encompasses all three. I can produce ceramic jars, plates, cups, and bowls during certain times, pottery, vases, and tiles at others, and even sculptures when things are good. With the farm producing a primary and a cash crop we should be in good order come what may. If we ever get there.

Wolfe

Multi-Use Radio Service (MURS)

In the Memorandum Opinion and Order and Second Report and Order (pdf) released May 23, 2002, the Commission updated the service rules regarding five Industrial/Business Pool VHF frequencies known in the PLMR community as the VHF “color dot” frequencies. These frequencies were moved from Part 90 to Part 95 and became a new Citizens Band Radio Service (CB) named the Multi-Use Radio Service (MURS). The Commission defines MURS as a private, two-way, short-distance voice or data communications service for personal or business activities of the general public.

Licensing

No licenses are issued for this service. An entity is authorized by rule to operate a MURS transmitter if it:

What is a MURS Radio, it’s the new version of the old Citizens band (CB Radio) at a higher frequency. However, unlike CB Radios of old, MURS can be used for other things beyond mere voice communications, except for transmissions of “images”. The first that comes to mind is a wireless drive way alarm systems. Although there is a limit on output of only 2 watts, there is no limit on antenna gain. Antenna height is limited to 20 feet above structure or 60 feet above ground, whichever is the greater.

Freq. List:

151.820 MHz

151.880 MHz
151.940 MHz
154.570 MHz
154.600 MHz

Hand held MURS have a range from anywhere between 2 miles and 8 miles, whereas base station to base station can reach up to 20 miles. (depending on terrain)

These are not HAM radios, which are meant for long range communications, these are the radios you use to scout with. It is important to note that data and voice transmissions are permitted on these frequencies. This give rise to the possibility of using encrypted voice communications using MURS. You can not alter the circuits of the MURS radios themselves which are regulated by the FCC, however, like using echo mics in the 70’s, I see no problem with using altered microphones which contain circuits within them to encrypt voice to data transmissions. Double key encryption would be the preferred method of choice here during TEOTWAWKI, with trusted parties previously sharing keys. Since you can run an entire Linux distro from a USB 4gig pen drive, hard core GPG/PGP data encryption transmissions should be a breeze. Something to be submitted to the open source/patent groups?

I am pretty sure that a lot of the HAM radio programs available for debian/linux distro can be used in some fashion for use with MURS, I’ll poke around with this as soon as I can. Another idea I have has to do with a secure telephone system, now you can not connect your MUR to a telephone network, but as long as the telephone equipment meets the FCC rules there should be no problem with using them exclusively on MURS radios. The FCC has now established an entirely new, Part 95-based certification procedure for manufacturers wishing to enter the MURS market.

Anyway, MURS have made it to my shopping list for this year. I’ll keep you posted on what else I come up with for taking full advantage of the system.

– Wolfe

Last Light by Alex Scarrow

Last Light has to one of the more recent books I’ve read to make it to my mental list of must reads. The reason I would include this has more to do with setting of this novel then anything else, the plot wasn’t that good.

The story opens up with the main character being a civilian engineer working in Iraq when all hell breaks loose, the end result is the end of oil. This story is really about Peak Oil, and the only fiction in this book is the trigger, at least we the readers, and the author hopes that the trigger is fiction, giving us a little more time.

The story is only a medium to the real story going on in the background, survivalists will love this story. The characters are just there to entertain, well we are told what would happen if the world oil tap was suddenly shut off without warning.

The author I think is not making an extraordinary claim as to the consequences of a sudden oil cut off towards food riots, lack of drinking water, and the other end results. In fact he makes an important note, that oil equals the same as each of us, even the poor, as having 96 slaves each:

Well, say you’ve come home from work and you want to wash your office shirt for tomorrow. You’d shove it in your washing machine, and then put it on the fast spin-dry afterwards, wouldn’t you? And maybe you want a cup of tea whilst you’re waiting, maybe put on the TV, and throw a frozen dinner in the microwave. Well in slave terms, that would have required a slave to take your shirt, chop wood to make a fire, to heat the water, to wash it. You’d probably need another slave to go hunt or gather the food for your dinner, another slave to chop wood and build a cooking fire, to boil the water for your tea, and cook the food that the hunter-slave brought in. Still more slaves to entertain you in place of a TV set. And let’s not forget the four or five slaves that carried you home from work on their backs, instead of the car you drive home in. Anyway, you get the point right?”

Imagine us without the slave of oil, that’s the premise for this book. And IMHO t’s not so much a work of fiction, but a warning of the future.

– Wolfe

Mental Update

OK, so I know it’s not only been awhile since I did any real updates, and it’s also been awhile since I have updated you all on what is happening on our plan to get out of here and onto the farm. So …

In order to start off the year on a good foot, I redid my blog template, and plan to make a renewed effort to post more often. But as to what has happened recently let me give you a bit of a run down.

First, not in any particular order, Christmas sucked. I don’t think I have ever been as depressed in my life before. There were a lot of reasons why this last yule time bit the big one, not the least of which was the lack of funds to encourage the kids to be ‘good sons’, but the other main reason it sucked was because it also meant that we would not be on the farm by New Years.

There is also been the matter of dealing with the fact that I have had a very narrow mind about where we should live. To be honest with myself, the main reason we are currently planning to move to Ontario, rather then staying in British Columbia, is due to the fact that my own parents live in Ontario, along with my brother and sisters.

Family can be a funny thing. You can get along great at a distance, but up close sometimes things don’t work out.

There are things about Ontario, and in fact Canada in general that bother the hell out of me. With Obama in the US now trying to turn that great nation into another Canada, it leaves me with a great desire to find a place somewhere on this Earth which isn’t ruled by the mass of sheep known as socialists.

How much we leave our current residence dictates what will happen next. If there isn’t enough for the farm, we have Plan “B” to fall back on, which primarily includes a boat. If on the other hand, fate would have us end up with a little more then we need, the question arrives in my head, should we leave Canada?

I have, even when I was a child, that Australia and New Zealand would be about a safe a place as anywhere. The reason I have thought this is because I figured, growing up in the cold war, that they were far enough out of the line of sight to be ignored. At least a little more then Canada, or the USA.

In recent years I’ve learned that a countries location does not protect itself from strife, and other issues, but rather it is the people themselves that tend to protect that country from issues that could be labeled only as potential hazards. As I explored this idea, I found out to my dismay that there were only three countries that were truly republics. That being the USA, Northern Ireland, and Paraguay.

So one of the things that bothered me, and I tried really hard to ignore it, was the fact that if it wasn’t for family, I’d likely run away from Canada faster then cat with it’s tail on fire.

So I have made a mental list of “what if’s”, and given myself a resulting set of answers. At this point, we are still heading east. But there are options if this or that. We shall see what the new year brings.

Wolfe

Kids and the ER

Children are the whirl pools of energy. In their early ages, they are filled with the enthusiasm to explore and have fun. Children being children have no knowledge of risks and dangers thus often end up getting hurt. Some of these injuries are small but some can be scary and end up dragging the parents and children to the nearest ER for urgent care.

Hospitals are scary places, they go worst when you not only have a hurt and freaked out child frightened parents too. In such scenarios, for proper care to be received, it is important for children to feel comfortable.  Picking a child friendly ER is very important. You should talk to your doctors and beforehand know where to rush the child in case of emergencies. The hospitals should have a polite team of doctors and nurses, equipment should be child-sized and toys or other kid friendly tools should be around.

For the child to feel secure, the parents need to be relaxed. Before rushing out, breathe, relax, take a hold of the situation and then make a rational decision. In such situations reaching to scary solutions is very easy hence it is important to not think negatively until the doctor has reviewed your child and the facts are in your hand. The doctor is an expert and they know best, listening to the doctor and following their advice is highly required in such situations. It is a good idea to carry your child’s medical history with you. In a small notebook or your phone, update recent illnesses, medicines, vaccines which the child lately came in contact with. Parents are advised not to give any medicines or try home remedies in a situation that requires medical attention. The doctor should be made aware if any such treatments or medicines were given before the professional care was provided.

When taking the child to the ER, please make sure other siblings do not accompany. This would not only scare them but be a distraction for the parents too. Your child would be needing your undivided attention, so patiently being there for the child is very important. It is also necessary to be honest to the child. Children should be made aware of what is happening, what will happen and what should they expect. His/her mind should be distracted from the pain so that the doctors can work with ease.

Going to the ER with a hurt child is a scary experience. However, if handled patiently the child would be comfortable and in no time be pain free too!

A Must Watch for Parents

If you are the parent of a small infant you MUST WATCH THIS VIDEO,
please watch it till the end, even if you find it disturbing, you
will be amazed. I strongly recommend that you visit the source URL of
this video, and learn all you can if you have small children.

Another Swine Flu Comic

Yeah, so I was bored while I was going to the next job site, and posted to twitter “The most viral thing about #swineflu is it’s marketing” and got several retweets as a result, nice.

So because I’ve been working my butt off trying to raise enough money to move to Ontario by the end of next month I haven’t had time to update this blog much, but with swine flu still on my mind I did find this for Saturday…

E-mail

A really late Mondays Lessons Learned Sept 14th 2009

I sit here tired as a dog, every muscle in my body hurts even those little ones in my fingers. Well maybe it isn’t that bad, but I am feeling the effects of not working out every set of body muscles evenly for the last few years.

How did this happen?

In every majority city of the world there is a an intersection called commonly “Cash Corner”. It is used by illegal immigrants looking for work, or other that want to stay under the radar from big brother. The reason this continues, and has for so many years (there were cash corners in the the late 60’s that my own uncle worked at), is because legally it is called sub-contracting. There is how ever a very large underground economy that uses this legal loop hole to avoid taxes. But it is not limited to just one corner of a major city, Dianne Francis once work a very biased book called the “underground economy in Canada” which although IMHO was very lack in it’s fact finding, very right in assuming that lots of companies hire staff ‘under the table’. It is in this market that one will find the future of trade and barter after WHSHTF. And while the economy slips into the nether reaches of depression, you will not only find the illegal immigrant, but guys like me who still pay taxes on what they make in these jobs.

Times are tough people, and if you think they are going to get better your out of your mind. If you want to survive what is coming, get into that mind set which tells you it is already here. If you can’t go looking for a job that is more TEOTWAWKI safe, might I suggest you join a gym? TRUST ME IT WILL BE LESS PAINFULL LATER!

Anyway, I’m dead tired, still have a million things to do before bed, and have to get up early tomorrow for another day like today. We still want to move on Halloween night, so every penny counts right now.

Lesson Learned: You should work your body like your life depended on it, some day it might.

– wolfe

A Really Late Monday’s Lessons Learned Sept 14th 2009

I sit here tired as a dog, every muscle in my body hurts even those little ones in my fingers. Well maybe it isn’t that bad, but I am feeling the effects of not working out every set of body muscles evenly for the last few years.

How did this happen?

In every majority city of the world there is a an intersection called commonly Cash Corner. It is used by illegal immigrants looking for work, or other that want to stay under the radar from big brother. The reason this continues, and has for so many years (there were cash corners in the the late 60’s that my own uncle worked at), is because legally it is called sub-contracting. There is how ever a very large underground economy that uses this legal loop hole to avoid taxes. But it is not limited to just one corner of a major city, Dianne Francis once work a very biased book called the underground economy in Canada which although IMHO was very lack in it’s fact finding, very right in assuming that lots of companies hire staff ‘under the table’. It is in this market that one will find the future of trade and barter after WHSHTF. And while the economy slips into the nether reaches of depression, you will not only find the illegal immigrant, but guys like me who still pay taxes on what they make in these jobs.

Times are tough people, and if you think they are going to get better your out of your mind. If you want to survive what is coming, get into that mind set which tells you it is already here. If you can’t go looking for a job that is more TEOTWAWKI safe, might I suggest you join a gym? TRUST ME IT WILL BE LESS PAINFULL LATER!

Anyway, I’m dead tired, still have a million things to do before bed, and have to get up early tomorrow for another day like today. We still want to move on Halloween night, so every penny counts right now.

Lesson Learned: You should work your body like your life depended on it, some day it might.

Back to Sunday Must Reads

Sorry I missed last week, here’s one to make you think. After you read this short article on the common fruit we find in our baskets, think about all the others we take for granted on our kitchen tables.

Wolfe

A Late Monday Lessons Learned eating through Preps

Well, as we try to decide what to get rid of, one thing was easy. We are eating our food preps, and there are many things that come to mind that we did wrong. First off, you should be always eating through your preps, rotating the food supply is the best way to make sure you have food stored that you like to eat, and that it doesn’t get stored for so long that it spoils. The other that only occurred to me as a result of having almost all the cookbooks packed already was to keep your favorite recipes near the food that is stored. It would also be a good idea to store dry ingredients already mixed for soups, stews, and mixes such as pancakes. The best place to store these are still in mason jars, but the other thing we have learned is that non of the many many many mason jars we have will not travel well, so they are in the garage sale. Which also explains why we are eating through our preps, we need to empty them, and most of our good preps that did not spoil are in mason jars.

One other thing that I have learned this last week while we try to get what is turning into a never ending task of sorting and packing is that I am really looking forward to getting out of British Columbia. It has gotten to the point that I am even beginning to hate this province. As the Olympics get closer, I keep thinking to myself how much better off we would have been to have moved back to Ontario five years ago when we had the chance. We should have jumped on it, and because of that thinking, I find myself making easier choices about what to keep, and what not to.

My advise, or lesson learned this week could therefore be wrapped up into saying that you should always live as if you would never get another chance. If your gut tells you, you should move out of the city, do it this month, do not wait till you can do it, make it happen.

Wolfe

BOB/GOOD/GO Bag for the Ultra-Urban Environment – Part 10 – A real world test of urban preparedness

NOTE: The following has been “fictionalized” to protect the guilty. The essence is true, but details have been purposefully changed to prevent identifying the city.

While continuing to work on the mental exercise that prompted this series of articles, I had an unplanned opportunity to test some of my presumptions and preparations. As a world traveler, I sometimes end up in cities that may not be the first world’s image of an ultra-urban megalopolis, but are densely packed, urban environments with building roofs higher than what the local, first responders could normally reach by their standard equipment. In this case, while working late at a Customer’s office building, an explosion occurred that impacted more than a city block. It took until the next day before I was able to return to my hotel. In essence, I had to depend on what I had with me overnight.

INVENTORY

A quick snap shot of what I had with me, both on my person and “at hand”:

– A “breakaway” EDC lanyard attached to a tiny, coin battery operated LED light, a Fox 40 Micro whistle, a Leatherman Squirt P4, and a USB reader loaded with a2 Gig, Micro SD card. All items secured inside a couple inch piece of bicycle inner tube (both to protect the items as well as keeping me from using the light for non-emergency situations).

– A large, suit pocket wallet with money, credit cards, licenses, emergency contact info (ICE), and passport.
– Traveler’s ankle “pocket” with credit cards, bulk of currency, and photo reduced copies of key identification.
– A coin pouch.
– A key ring with assorted keys, ear plugs in a case, and a Pocket Wrench II as the fob.
– A GSM/GPS Blackberry.
– A well-worn, hard wood and steel cane.
– A large, silk kerchief.
– A nondescript, black, Lowepro camera/laptop backpack containing:
– – Laptop (which could be another “flashlight”), USB external hard drive, USB hub, power cords, 12 foot extension cord, international power converter with many plugs, Ethernet cables, Ethernet hub, … (Yeah, I’m a geek!-)
– – Design notebooks, paper files, pencil case with pens, dry erase markers, and the like.
– – A novel, newspaper, local tourist guide, map, and phrase book.
– – Small tool kit with some basic hand tools, suitable for electronic gear. Including a cheap, Chinese made, 9 LED, three “AAA” flashlight.
– – Four, 500 ml water bottles filled nightly from a known good water source.
– – Some fiber and protein bars (bought at the airport).
– – Basic, personal First Aid Kit with some travel sized, over-the-counter drugs and potions.
– – The beginnings of a basic, personal Urban Survival Kit with rain poncho, heat sheet, head lamp, crank operated SW/FM/AM radio, water tablets, 100 feet of “550” cord, magnesium fire starter, zip lock bags and garbage bags (stored inside one zip lock bag), two P-100 masks, a traveler’s “cummerbund” wallet with photocopies of ID and the like, …
– – Assorted detritus that seems to always appear at the bottom of the bag.

I did not have a rental car, so no car-based emergency kit on this trip. I had some more gear in my luggage at the hotel, but in no way did I have the complete BOB/GOOD/GO Bag inventory that I have been developing as a result of this series of articles.

THE EVENT

The business part of the meeting was over. I had finished packing up my laptop and placed the backpack out of the way by the credenza in the conference room high up in a downtown office building. The discussion had now turned to debating going home to wives or heading out to a club.

If it wasn’t for the booming noise, I would have guessed an earthquake hit. Immediately all went dark as the power died. The conference room I was in did not have any windows. The air became a bit thick from the dust shaken loose. There was a delayed crash from one end of the room that later turned out to be the large, decorative, company logo falling off the wall. As I pulled the EDC lanyard out of my pocket and peeled back the rubber by feel, all in the room voiced that we were shaken but OK. As I turned on that tiny LED, there was a noticeable, if non-audible, “sigh” in the room. Just having that small glow of a light was enough to change a few people from silent fatalism to begin to think and take action.

I probably could have crawled to the credenza and found my backpack by feel for a light, if I had nothing on my person.. It was so much easier to find it with that small light. Once I oriented myself in the room, I hung the lanyard with the lit flashlight around my neck and started to move. Just before picking up my backpack, I relocated the Blackberry and wallet to my front pants pockets because I wasn’t planning on wearing the suit coat. I would carry the coat in the backpack – it was too hot for the “tropical” weight suit coat. I didn’t want the Blackberry or wallet to accidentally slip away from me. Without removing the tool kit from the backpack, I unzipped the tool kit to retrieve the 9 LED torch and lit up the room. As a side note; no one else had a flashlight. A couple people did have lighters; the cheap, BIC type . At this point I wondered if the local government required adding the chemical odor to the natural gas supply.

Although a lot of dust was stirred up, I could not detect any smoke. I tested the door, and then the doorknob with the back of my hand and did not sense the heat of a fire. The corridor was also very dark, even though the far end opened up onto cubicles with windows along the outer wall. A quick look determined that all the lights from the other buildings were also out. There were reflected lights from some traffic on the street.

Near the outer wall I could get signal strength showing on the Blackberry, but could not get a dial tone. So I sent out some SMS and PIN messages to people I knew locally and at home base to find out what was going on, and to let people know where I was.. The messages did not go out immediately, but seemed to “dribble” out over the radio waves. Some of my companions wanted to leave immediately. I wanted to first know what was happening. It took a bit to find a station on the hand crank radio. Even if I was totally fluent, I don’t think I could have understood the rapid pace of the news announcer. One of my companions translated saying that while it was not clear what exactly happened (as there were differing reports from a petrol transport explosion to a terrorist event), it was clear that it had happened the next street over and that the area of the city we were in was blacked out.

The first SMS response came in but was also unclear as to why there was an explosion. It was now about twenty minutes since the event and we decided to head out. My companions wanted to head home, and I decided it would be safer to go to the hotel. With an explosion that close, there was always the possibility that this, or an adjacent, building might have been damaged. There was plenty of emergency vehicles and sirens moving on the street, and no further sounds of explosions, gunfire, or anything else unsafe. My hotel was about a dozen blocks away

I donned the traveler’s “cummerbund” wallet under my shirt In it I stashed my passport and other things from my wallet except for one credit card, my international driver’s license (get it cheaply at AAA), and enough money to hire a cab, eat a meal, rent a room, and give tips.

There were some stumbles before finding the stairs and getting down to the lobby, including a pit stop in the men’s room to void bladders. Again, without the light it would have been very interesting.

Actually getting into the lobby was a problem. Probably because it would have been visible from the lobby, the door was unusually heavy and ornate. I’d guess it was a custom made door so it would blend in visually from the lobby side. With the jolt of the explosion, the door was now jammed down hard into the floor. It looked like the hinges had slipped and shifted their alignment. I guessed that the door was really too heavy for the hinges as mounted. Fortunately, unlike the factory made, western doors, the screws holding the hinges were not hidden by the closed door. I could not budge the screws on the door, but did break them free on the jam. I put a screw driver through the now empty screw hole on the top and middle hinge creating “T” handles to pull the door open from the hinge side, at least open enough to slip through.

As it was way past office hours, we seemed to be alone in the building. There was supposed to be a night watchman, but no one was visible in the lobby. And, of course, the exterior, lobby doors were locked. We were discussing searching for other exits or breaking this door when the night watchman jogged up to the exterior door. He had left the building to see what was going on and saw my bright flashlight through the lobby windows. He only approached when he saw that we were in office attire and probably not robbers.

Out on the street there were some people milling about. I turned on the GPS to confirm my sense of direction – the hotel really was about a dozen blocks on the other side of the explosion site. With the Blackberry back in my pocket I started to go around the corner. The first responders were still putting water on whatever it was. The fire appeared to be all but out. However, the police were not letting anyone proceed down that block. All were being shepherded down a side street. I was game for heading towards the next large boulevard before turning towards the hotel. I quickly noted that as I progressed away from the event, the number of people walking down the street decreased. There were some young men hanging out on the street corners ahead, and I started to get uncomfortable with the potential of someone wanting to take advantage of the blackout.

With the international travel, there is no way I can carry a firearm. Even knives or sprays are problematic. My cane was purposefully built to be strong and useful in such situations. The handle is a contoured “T” made of stainless steel with foam covering most of it for comfort (but not the ends, which happened to be rounded almost to a point on each end). The bottom of the cane is a knurled hunk of stainless steel with a rubber “foot” on one side and spikes on the other (for biting into ice covered walks). The foot can be unscrewed and reversed without tools. While the two ends look like they just screw onto the threads sticking out of the wood body, the threads are really the ends of a steel rod running the length of the cane. When the metal detectors go off, the guards see that it is a cane, and even if they unscrew the ends they won’t see any cavities so they have no concerns. I explain the heft as my need for a really strong cane to handle my mass.

But even if I was armed with a “full-auto”, the best way to handle a confrontation with bad guys is to not get into it in the first place. An acoustic guitar alerted me to a dimly lit “hole-in-the-wall” restaurant down an alley. A young couple, hand-in-hand, went in which made up my mind – it would probably be safer in there then on this side street at this hour.

The dim light was from the many candles – the power was still out. It turned out to be a family run place. They were obviously interested in the novelty of a “foreigner” in their place. I played on this and was the epitome of a gregarious visitor. I applauded after every song. I tipped after the set. I entertained any question. After consuming a filling meal, I invited the owner/chef to join me in dessert. I paid in cash, and tipped well. My backpack was securely stored behind the bar and I was at a table with a full view of the bar.

Near closing time a local constable came in and, after surveying the patrons, focused on me. Demanding my identification, I handed him my International Driver’s License. This seemed to be a new wrinkle for him. He took the time to flip through it all and seemed impressed with all the languages, photo, and personal details. I guessed he didn’t know exactly what it was, but he accepted it as “official” identification.

It was obvious that he did not like “foreigners” and was looking for some excuse to exercise his “authority” on me. He demanded to know what I was doing here. I answered that I was invited to his wonderful city by “Big-Name-Customer” to help train their employees, and after spending the day at their offices down the street, I came in here for some real food instead of what is served at the hotel. I was intentionally playing up that I was really interested in participating in the local environment and wasn’t some westerner here to take away a job – or anything else he could object to. He demanded to know which hotel I was staying at, how long I had been staying there, how much longer I was planning on staying, and then came to an interesting question; where was I when the explosion happened. I fibbed a bit and stated that I stepped in here, this restaurant, since the explosion – implying that I entered as the explosion happened. The owner of the restaurant chipped in that I had been here since the explosion happened. Somewhat mollified, and probably miffed, that there was nothing blatant for the officer to use as an excuse to exercise his authority, he stated that he would hold my ID to check out my story. I got the impression he was asking for a bribe to get it back. Even though I knew the magical phrase, “Is there a form or a fee to make this right?”, that would not explicitly acknowledge bribery nor indicate that I was trying to do anything illegal, I was keenly aware that I was in a “damned if I do, damned if I don’t” situation. If I paid for the return of my ID, he could arrest me for trying to bribe him. If I didn’t, I probably wouldn’t be seeing that ID anytime soon. I was glad I did not give him my passport. Instead, I complemented him for being so thorough in protecting his fellow citizens and being such a diligent officer. And that as I would be staying here for several more days, I had no concerns with trusting a police officer with my ID.

This seemed to both confuse and pacify him. It wasn’t the response he was expecting. But it was a response he couldn’t object to. He proceeded to talk to a few others as he headed towards the door.

Originally I had reserved the hotel for several more days as a cushion for any additional time needed, but the real work had been completed that day. Some reports to type up, drawings to finish; those could be done remotely. I decided right then to check out of the downtown hotel and move to a hotel close to the airport, if I could not get an earlier flight.

As an apology for the officer’s behavior, the owner asked me to stay as he closed up. He shared one of his special bottles with me as he smoked and talked about the better parts of his city, his country, and his culture. The owner seemed to be very apologetic for the behavior of his countryman. The owner handed me my ID saying the officer had asked for it to be returned to me. From the look on the owner’s face, I got the impression he had taken it upon himself to “pay the fee” to get it back. After taking time for us (mostly the owner) to finish the bottle, I asked if I could return the favor and buy a similar, special bottle. I purposefully overpaid for it to reimburse the owner for the bribe money he had paid, even though I would have gladly never seen that ID again.

I took advantage of the situation when he fell asleep to retrieve my backpack, make myself comfortable, and catch some sleep. I woke up as momma came down to see what happened to her husband. She shifted quickly from scolding him to happy and welcoming, as soon as she saw me. She insisted I stay for breakfast.

In the full morning sunlight, I continued on my circuitous route to the hotel. Two blocks later, at the boulevard, I grabbed a taxi to the hotel. After some phone calls and a shower, I got another taxi to the airport hotel and ended that impromptu exercise in urban preparedness.

LESSONS LEARNED

I really had three situations to deal with; getting out of the darkened conference room high up in an office building to the street, circumventing street thugs, and dealing with an odious official. The most important thing one can have in those or any situation is a knowledgeable and flexible brain. Just like “defensive driving”, one should practice “defensive living”. Situational awareness and creative problem solving, – using one’s brain and thereby anticipating and bypassing or, at least, attenuating dangerous or unpleasant situations. Even worst case scenario planning. A mindset already adopted by “preppers”.

The two physical tools I was really glad to have was electric light and cash money. Every other tool I used – screwdrivers, pliers, radio, Blackberry, etcetera – were not absolutely necessary. I did not have to use GPS to confirm my planned path. I could have used substitute tools found on site, like unscrewing the base of a rolling office chair and using that heavy metal as a pickax to break through the wall or door.

It would have been much more difficult to read a map or hack through the door in total darkness. Unlike the wilderness where it is rarely, totally dark (due to moonshine or starshine), it is too easy for the urban dweller to be plunged, instantly, into total darkness. As examples; a subway car, elevator, room with no windows, parking garage – all get very dark very fast when the power fails. Flashlights are very important in the urban environment.

And money – especially cash in hand – is the grease that works wonders for any human interaction (with maybe the exception of “true love”). Having sufficient cash in hand to get water, food, shelter, or anything else to keep one healthy and independent is the best insurance policy.

Although I didn’t have to deal with fire in this situation, fire was a part of the emergency. And if I was just one block over, I would have had to deal with fire as part of my escape. This has reinforced my perception that personal protective equipment to allow a civilian to egress from a fire and/or smoke filled building is very important for an urban kit.

POSTSCRIPT

“Bravo Zulu, Animal Papa.”

D. Period – All rights reserved – 2009 – Use permitted by all only with attribution.

BOB/GOOD/GO Bag for the Ultra-Urban Environment – Part 9 – Fire Extinguishers

This might be a bit of a tangent as I am not advocating carrying a fire extinguisher in the BOB/GOOD/GO bag. Much better to get oneself safely out of harm’s way. But I’m such a big proponent of extinguishers being available in all habitable spaces that I’d like to underscore this tangible, insurance policy. And since it is appropriate to put them in your BOV, it does, sort of, make sense to explore the topic here.

I have seen too many unnecessary calamities from fire. A fire bottle is no guarantee that anyone can stop a fire. But, in some situations, a trained person can stop a small fire from becoming a huge conflagration. And in some situations, the fire extinguisher can be used as a tool to help clear a path for a person to escape.

Elsewhere you can learn all the fire fighting and fire extinguisher details; Class A/B/C/D/K, PASS method, etcetera. I am not trying to give a mini firefighter course. I am trying to detailing some aspects I think important for the urban dweller.

In the home and car, you need at least one ABC extinguisher. In the home you have all of the basic, three classes of flammable materials. If you have lots of electronics, you may want to also have a CO2 extinguisher(s) to cut down on the mess of cleanup. In the car, if an ABC agent is used it is relatively easy to clean using low pressure water and steam, especially under the hood

Check the statistics yourself; fires tend to start where fuels are stored or used. Kitchens, garages, and basements are often where fires start – the places where appliances are used to heat or burn fuels like ovens, stoves, water heaters, furnaces.. The second group on the list where fires start are where consumer electrical or electronic equipment are used. That would be the bedrooms, living room, or den. It used to be that places where smokers would sleep – bedrooms or living room loungers – would also be high on the list. But households without smokers have greatly decreased incidents of fires starting in other than kitchens, garages, or basements. If you have enough budget, it makes sense to place extinguishers near each of those potential hot spots.

Sometimes in urban environments, there will be a bedroom or back room that doesn’t have a second escape route. These could be located high in a condo building, buried in a townhouse basement basement, or even in stand-alone houses’ utility rooms converted into “in-law” apartments. Consideration should be given to putting fire bottles in these rooms in addition to those positioned next to the potential hot spots.

How big (or how small) a bottle is appropriate? Fire extinguishers used in homes are sized by the weight of the extinguishing agent inside the bottle. For planning purposes, the filled extinguisher can have a total weight of up to twice the weight of the extinguishing agent. I believe the bottle should be as large as the normal occupants can lift and carry one handed. For homes with children old enough to be allowed to stay home unsupervised (even for one hour) that is a ten pound extinguisher. They weigh more than ten pounds, but I’ve had eight year olds lift and use ten pounders on fire. As long as you can lift, carry, and use it, more is better.

In a car, the space is even more limited. The extinguisher should be mounted within reach of the driver. That translates to a five or even a 2.5 pound, ABC bottle. The smaller size is offset by the ease of fast egress compared to climbing stairs or even an escape ladder in a multi-storied dwelling.

There are two ways to mount a fire bottle, hanger or bracket. Hangers come in two types, pin or fingers, and the hanger must be of the type the bottle will accept. Hangers are used to mount a bottle on a stationary wall and where the bottle won’t be hit by people, pets, or other moving items – bottles can be easily knocked off hangers. Brackets start with fingers like a hanger, and then add one or two latching straps around the middle of the bottle to prevent the bottle from accidentally being knocked off the bracket. Brackets are required in any moving environment like a boat or car. I highly recommend using only brackets to mount fire bottles anywhere.

Always buy extinguishers with a metal – not plastic – neck and valve. Even if a plastic neck/valve extinguisher says it is refillable, most refilling places will not refill it because they break so easily. Most “cheap” extinguishers have plastic necks/valves. This is what most big box stores sell.

My experience has been to find the local, sole-owner shop who is certified to refill all the different types of bottles you are considering, and work with him on price. Sometimes, I have been able to have my order tacked onto a larger, commercial order for the best deal. You may get a slight price break from a mail order or big box place, but you will only get service from a place that can refill them. Plus, saving that last dollar is not worth as much as having a professional who specializes in fire equipment helping you. Especially when it comes to life and limb gear.

I highly recommend you expend a CO2 bottle in the back yard while having all (young and old) try it. Once they experience the PASS method they are likely to actually use it during the adrenalin rush of a real situation. Besides, CO2’s are really cheap to refill, and leave no mess to clean up.

As part of a multi-bottle order, you might get the shop owner to throw in a free, training refill.

Do treat all pressurized bottles with care. If the valve gets knocked off, it becomes a powerful missile. Always store bottles either in their bracket (hanger), or lying on their side so they can’t roll. Most modern fire bottles have a ring or flat plate welded to the bottom to facilitate standing upright. I just don’t trust them. They are still too easy to knock over. I’ve seen what happens when the nozzle comes off.

D. Period – All rights reserved – 2009 – Use permitted by all only with attribution.

BOB/GOOD/GO Bag for the Ultra-Urban Environment – Part 8 – Cash on Hand; Coins or Banknotes

What ever the amount of cash on hand, it is probably a good thing to have smaller denominations instead of large ones. I’d rather have a wallet with 100 five dollar bills than five 100 dollar bills. During a time of crises when banks may be temporarily shuttered, those stores that are still open may not be able to make change. I’d rather pay $5 for a bottle of water instead of $100 because no one has change.

This can be taken to extremes. I would not like to carry all the cash in pennies, from both a bulk and weight perspective. One dime weighs so much less than ten pennies. Less bulk, too. But do two and a half dines take up less weight or space than a quarter? What are the weight and volume trade-offs between two quarters and a half dollar coin?

Below are three tables showing the dimensions of US, Canadian, and Euro coins. I put in leading zeros for uniform number widths. (If you have trouble lining up the columns, copy the table into your favorite text document and change the font to a mono-spaced one like Courier.)

The weight and volume for U.S. Coins (present day minting as of 2009) are:
Coin W(g) D(cm) H(cm) V(cm^3) W/$ V/$ $/Roll W/Roll V/Roll
USD$0.01 02.500 1.905 0.155 0.442 250.000 44.179 00.50 125.0 22.1
USD$0.05 05.000 2.121 0.195 0.689 100.000 13.780 02.00 200.0 27.6
USD$0.10 02.268 1.791 0.135 0.340 022.680 03.401 05.00 113.4 17.0
USD$0.25 05.670 2.426 0.175 0.809 022.680 03.236 10.00 226.8 32.4
USD$0.50 11.340 3.061 0.215 1.582 022.680 03.164 10.00 226.8 31.6
USD$1.00 08.100 2.650 0.200 1.103 008.100 01.103 25.00 202.5 27.6
Dimension Source: http://www.usmint.gov/about_the_mint/?action=coin_specifications

And if north of the border (present day minting as of 2009):
Coin W(g) D(cm) H(cm) V(cm^3) W/$ V/$ $/Roll W/Roll V/Roll
CAD$0.01 2.350 1.905 0.145 0.413 235.000 41.328 00.50 117.5 20.7
CAD$0.05 3.950 2.120 0.176 0.621 079.000 12.425 02.00 158.0 24.9
CAD$0.10 1.750 1.803 0.122 0.312 017.500 03.115 05.00 087.5 15.6
CAD$0.25 4.400 2.388 0.158 0.708 017.600 02.831 10.00 176.0 28.3
CAD$0.50 6.900 2.713 0.195 1.127 013.800 02.255 (See Note)
CAD$1.00 7.000 2.650 0.195 1.076 007.000 01.076 25.00 175.0 26.9
CAD$2.00 7.300 2.800 0.180 1.108 003.650 00.554 50.00 182.5 27.7
Dimension Source: http://www.mint.ca/store/mint/learn/circulation-currency-1100028
Note: The CAD$0.50 is not widely circulated and is not readily recognized by many merchants as valid. I can’t even find anyone who sells the Canadian half-dollar coin wrapper!

In Euro’s:
Coin W(g) D(cm) H(cm) V(cm^3) W/€ V/€ €/Roll W/Roll V/Roll
EUR€0.01 2.300 1.625 0.167 0.346 230.000 34.635 00.50 115.0 17.3
EUR€0.02 3.060 1.875 0.167 0.461 153.000 23.056 01.00 153.0 23.1
EUR€0.05 3.920 2.125 0.167 0.592 078.400 11.846 02.50 196.0 29.6
EUR€0.10 4.100 1.975 0.193 0.591 041.000 05.913 04.00 164.0 23.7
EUR€0.20 5.740 2.225 0.214 0.832 028.700 04.160 08.00 229.6 33.3
EUR€0.50 7.800 2.425 0.238 1.099 015.600 02.199 20.00 312.0 44.0
EUR€1.00 7.500 2.325 0.233 0.989 007.500 00.989 25.00 187.5 24.7
EUR€2.00 8.500 2.575 0.220 1.146 004.250 00.573 50.00 212.5 28.6
Dimension Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euro_coin

The weight and volume of the various coins per Euro or dollar (US or CA) is of primary import here. And now the answers are apparent to the questions I had asked:
– “Do two and a half dines take up less weight or space than a quarter?” They weight the same but dimes take up just a smidgen more space.
– “What are the weight and volume trade-offs between two quarters and a half dollar coin?” Same weight but the quarters also take up an even smaller, extra “smidge” of space than the half-dollar.

The smallest bank notes are USD$1.00, CAD$5.00, and EUR€5.00. With banknotes weighing a little more than one gram each, they are the hands down choice for carrying around (by weight alone). But if you have decided to take coins, which type of coin would you take?

In US coins, if I could only have one type of coin, I would choose dimes. Susan B. Anthony dollar coins would be the best of the coins by weight and volume, but dollar bills are even better. Dimes, quarters, and half-dollars are almost identical in weight and volume (per dollar), and are better than nickels or pennies. So I choose dimes. Having dimes allows me to make better change, and every vending machine I’m likely to use accepts dimes..

My second choice of coin would be quarters over half-dollars. The quarter can make better change than half-dollars (and when combined with dimes, I can make change down to five cent increments after the first quarter). Also, half-dollars are not as widely used, and some vending machines do not accept them.

In Canadian coins, my choice would be dimes and “loonies” (dollar coins). The rational is basically the same for US coins, but because the smallest Canadian banknote is five dollars, the dollar coin becomes the best choice.

As for Europe, it depends on the country(ies) you anticipate traveling through. Local preferences vary. For instance, Finland doesn’t even mint the one or two cent coins. But forced to choose, I’d probably mirror the Canadian choice.

So, for the purposes of the hypothetical that started this series of articles, I’d ideally go with one hundred in $5, one hundred in $1, and $140 in dimes and/or quarters – $640 of emergency cash.. But if that is in each of the four BOB/GOOD/GO Bags . . . I don’t know that this is realistic.

As I’ve said before, this is a work in progress . . .

D. Period – All rights reserved – 2009 – Use permitted by all only with attribution.

Originally posted on July 8, 2008 @ 7:03 pm

BOB/GOOD/GO Bag for the Ultra-Urban Environment – Part 7 – Cash on Hand; How Much is Enough

When the lights go out, so do the ATM/ABM, credit card point-of-sale, and debit systems. Cash becomes not just king, but the only ticket. How much cash do you keep on you day to day? Enough to get you out of trouble, but also to survive for the days (weeks, months?) that it will take for the infrastructure to return to normal?

How much is enough? For the purposes of this series of articles I am going to assert that if she can get to her home, grandparents, or lover’s home she will be able to draw upon preppers stores and survive even a multi-month quarantine. Those stores include additional cash that can be used for an extended stay or to evacuate the city. That leaves the immediacy of the moment with the aim of getting to one of these safe places.

Now is the time for guesses. I have given this some thought, but I haven’t come up with good references or studies of how much is enough during urban emergencies that disrupt the ATM/CC infrastructure. Talking to various government (FEMA and Military) and non-government (Red Cross) people-in-the-field I have gotten widely different suggestions ranging from $100 to $1,000. Here are my guesses:

Transportation –
A taxi across the city during rush hour from some far-flung entertainment centers back home (within walking distance of the kids) can cost up to $60, as a worst case. Assume during an emergency the cost would double to $120. If the public transit system is running that can help. It does not seem cost effective to have prepaid tokens for individual trips. Paying cash is good enough and the small difference of any savings that might be had by bulk buying tokens doesn’t overcome the burden of carrying additional, special coins. Especially since money can be used to buy water, food, shelter, or whatever is needed while the public transit tokens would probably not (at least during the leading edge of the emergency).

Having small denominations is important so you don’t throw in a $20 bill to pay for one bus fare.

Shelter –
Some emergencies (like a massive storm) might cause one to shelter in place, even when you are not in a place of shelter. In the ultra-urban environment, hotels are ubiquitous. And most have a special “stranded” discount during times of emergencies. A room that normally sells for over $400 a night might be had for $100.

And if a hotel is not convenient, bunking with a co-worker, friend, or family member is still a possibility. Personally, I don’t like to impose myself, even during an emergency, so I would prefer being able to provide cash (if not labor and/or staples) to compensate.

Water –
Here is were I expect the greed to first appear. Small bottles of water that normally sell for fifty cents or a dollar that will quickly become $5 and then $10. Assuming a gallon of water times three days while the worst storm blows over could be hyper-inflated to $200 (or more, if bought in small bottles).

Food –
Getting 2,000 or so calories a day when the power is out can be a problem. After the first half to one day, with no immediate restoration of power planned, some restaurants will want to sell what ever food they have before the refrigerators and freezers heat up and spoil the food. Those will be the best deals. I’m guessing anywhere from $30 to $90 a day ($10 to $30 a meal). Bigger, higher end restaurants that have a catering component (including hotel restaurants) will have the capability to cook on portable propane, butane, or even Sterno. Those restaurant prices will normally be higher. Call it at $100 to $200 a day.

But thought has to be given to the possibility of eating out of vending machines. Assuming a hotel’s generator is working, surviving on dozens of candy bars a day is possible. Here having rolls of coins will be of benefit.

All of this is just wild guessing. But it does give a starting point. For my friend’s use, I’d recommend at least $240 for the first 24 hours (for at least two inflated taxi trips). For 72 hours plus, I’m recommending an additional $500 (for shelter, food, and/or water). I’d have at least $500 in bills, and the rest in coins. This seems to give the greatest flexibility in a cash-only crises.

D. Period – All rights reserved – 2009 – Use permitted by all only with attribution.

Originally posted on July 7, 2009 @ 7:02 pm