Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Swine Flu

Well the swine flu has officially infected Mass. Two girls have it in Lowell, about 25 miles NW of Boston. Time for condition Yellow.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Saturday Survivalist Meeting

Sorry I didn't post about this Saturday night, but the weekend was real crazy. Work was crazy too, considering I'm still working and it's 12:30 am the next day.

Anyway, Heading out to Franklin for the Meet was awesome. Met 9 other preppers from three States. Between the 10 of us we covered all walks of life, ages, etc. And we showed up with an open mind and chit-chatted about prepping. I personally learned a lot about HAM radio. Others learned about Faraday Cages and Solar flares from yours truly. Others had great info on where to get pre-1965 coins for silver. There was so much information going around it was a bit of an overload.

A few ideas circulated around. There might be a group buy put together for pre-1965 silver. I'm going to see about what it would cost for a whole pallet of hard red winter wheat for a group buy. Evidently I'm blessed by having an Agway I do business with. So I need to check on that.

We tentatively scheduled another meet for sometime in June. This one will be in a park or something so we aren't scaring the sheeple as much. We also can do some live skill demonstrations. Two of the guys were HAM operators, and I'd love a walk through of the basics. I could do a weapons rundown, or firestarting, or squad communications. Another fellow was an EMT, maybe a trauma 101 class.

Great stuff. Anyone out there should reach out to their fellow preppers and have similar meetings before we all get the swine flu.

It was a great time, and not filled with as much doom and gloom as you would think. Thanks to everyone who came, and if you didn't, try to get to the next one!

Oh yeah "Get off of my lawn!"

Monday, April 27, 2009

Death by Piggy

And I thought the pig was going to kill my by clogging my arteries with bacon juice. My word how fast things change. Pandemic was about #25 on my "Oh Shit!" list, just above Zombie Apocalypse at #26. I'm not fully sold this is a true-blue pandemic just yet. There is a lot of smoke and mirrors going on, and facts are getting scarce.

Looks like Mexico is saying they have 1600 cases with 100 dead. That's a 6.25% mortality rate. Now the Spanish flu was 2.5% and killed 50-100 million in 1918. If that 6.25% is correct then we are fucked. Just stop what your doing and pray, shit yourself or whatever you feel is appropriate. They have to have a lot more cases, just a lot of people either never got properly diagnosed, or didn't go to the hospital for the flu.

One thing I'll grant Mexicans is they aren't going to run to the hospital and clog the emergency rooms like Americans would. How did we get so weak as a nation that with a sniffle we want to see a doctor? Bah! I'll avoid that tangent for now.

So what's the best thing to do? Simple. Avoid people. Short of that all you can do is try to cut down on the vectors the infection can take into your system.
#1 Don't touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
#2 Get the Fuck away from people that cough.
#3 Wash your hands - regular soap is just as good as antibacterial.

That's it. Other blogs have great information and deeper analysis, but those 3 rules will keep you out of trouble until we have a better idea of what's going on.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Garden update

Let's all have a moment of silence, please.

Yes, fellow gardeners, six lettuce plants and all 16 onion plants have gone to the great compost heap in the sky. Damn weird new england weather did them in with a real hard freeze a few weeks ago.

Because of this I kept my carrots inside an extra two weeks, I'll plant them and the second batch of lettuce this weekend. Better not freeze again or I'll have to have a sit-down with the global warming people.

My garlic is doing spectacular! I cannot wait for fresh home-grown garlic. Yummy! I have three tomato plants ready for transplant into containers. They are about 6" tall and growing well inside. My pepper plants are a little stunted, I'll be putting them out in a month or 6 weeks. I just checked and the tomatoes were already supposed to go out, good thing I didn't with the cold weather. they'd be dead too.

This gardening thing is a lot harder than it seems it should be. Good thing I'm practicing now, and not when my life and the lives of others are depending on the produce. Although you never know, I might need the garden to survive.

I need to get off my ass and build a 1' x 4' section of SFG to house my herbs. I got oregano, basil, dill, chives, and sage to grow. I got to figure out when to plant them too. A gardener's work is never done.

I got some more preps shipped to me today. I got a nifty light Gerber multitool, two of the maxpedition bags and a cheap wool blanket from This is the second or third order I've made with them and have had zero problems. I get their e-mail newsletter and every now and then I put in an order. Their closeout section cannot be beat for prices. Their normal gear seems a little pricey, but maybe because the closeouts are so cheap.

I've been dealing with another online retailer out of Vermont, and I'm pissed that the MOLLE M14 magazine pouches have been out for about six fucking weeks now. Their customer service is for shit, no e-mail notifications nothing. Only way I find out what's going on is to call them up and ask "WTF is going on with my order?"Needless to say, I'll be shopping somewhere else next time.

I ordered a shitload of stuff through the club, and it should all be coming in soon. 5000 shotgun primers, 150# of #8 shot, 10# of 00 buckshot, Pistol powder and 4# of my H4895 powder for my rifles. And 1000 CCI military primers so I won't slam-fire. I've only did it once, but they were cheap enough so why not?

Well it's Bruins time again, Sox are on too, if this rain can hold off. I hope everyone's doing well out there, I hope this summer isn't as bad as I fear it will be.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Silver Coins

I went to one of the larger flea markets on Sunday, and there was a lady selling silver rounds. That's a 1 troy ounce of silver coin. She was busy, and when I got her attention, I asked the price. Now silver closed at ~$13 an ounce or so on Friday so I was floored when she said $22.50 each.

Now far be it from me to begrudge someone a profit, I was expecting $15 each, not $22.50! So I told her loudly that spot silver closed at $13 bucks on Friday, and loudly asked her why she was jacking up her price. She replied she paid $20 an ounce and was just making a small profit.

I left and so did all her other customers. HA! I'm not paying for anyone else's stupidity. Just goes to show - buyer beware! I already have some silver, but it's worth it to get some more. While I have the extra cash it's a good investment. I won't make any money with it, well not exactly. The silver and gold will hold it's value to other goods and services while the dollar spirals up or down in an inflationary or delfationary death spiral.

I'd like to follow FerFal's suggestion of buying gold chains for wealth preservation and easy transportation, but I'm a complete noobie when it comes to gold. For now I'll buy up some more silver.

If you have some extra cash, I'm going to suggest having some silver and gold, but if your still stocking up on food or ammo, get that squared away first. Long before you worry about barter items.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Marathon Monday

Well I had to work today, braving the holiday traffic to get to and from work today. I drove solo, as "Al" is in FL going to the magic kingdom with his wife. Yeah I know in the story he's single...

Strangely, there was no traffic. In the past It's taken hours to fight through the mess of noobie nitwit drivers trying to make it in and out of the city. But today, there was nothing. Real weird.

So whilst at work I managed to slack off a bit and do some research into communications. Specifically HAM radio. That shit ain't cheap. Handy, but not cheap. I'm going to bump it down the list some. There are other supplies that would be better to get first. Plus I'd need to buy two of them one for myself and one for Mum.

This Saturday is the meeting for the survivalists and preppers in the NE area! Cannot wait. It's at 1PM at the Bugaboo Steakhouse 345 Cochituate Rd. Framingham MA. Be there or be square!

The other day I hit a major milestone, I went 25 straight on the skeet field. I'm pretty proud of that accomplishment. I'll be keeping my eyes open for a decent over and under now. I promised myself that if I did ever go 25 straight with my tactical Remington 870 Express that I would treat myself to a good over and under. I will be buying it used, unless there is someone out there who has a new O&U mis-priced or something. I saw a Remington 3200 for $1300 on, but it has no tubes. I've been invited to go bird hunting by a real nice fellow at the club, so I'd like to take him up on it. Most of what he hunts needs a 20 gauge or less, otherwise it'd be a puff of feathers!

Well the Bruins are on in 5 minutes so I'm off. I hate the Habs almost as much as the Yankees!

Sunday, April 19, 2009


We geeks love our acronyms. One everyone should be aware of is FUD - Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. Microsoft tried to use FUD to try to keep users from using alternative operating systems like Linux or Mac OSX. That marketing program failed.

Notice the tone of the Federal Government these days. It's all peaches and cream, sunsine, rainbows and puppy dogs. The economy is in recovery! Everyone drink the kool-aid. I'm not going out on a limb here. There is no doubt in my mind that this is a false rally, that the foundation of our economy, the US dollar, has flaws that will need to be addressed or it's going to all come tumbling down. Probably sooner rather than later.

When the government needs to rally the people, I expect them to go back to FUD to get the nitwits in congress to follow Obama, The Fed, and the Treasuries harebrained scheme. I can see the quotes now:
"We need to act now to save our economy..."
"The TARP-XVI bill will ensure the current market rally will be able to sustain growth..."
"Without governmental aid to restructure these companies..."
Blah Blah fucking Blah. The mainstream media's lack of any sort of investigation into what's going on these days is like the whine of a mosquito. It's annoying, but it's not going to kill you. Where are the journalists with balls these days? Carl Berstein and Bob Woodward, where are you now?

Glenn Beck seems like he's trying to shake up something with his show, but the "left leaning" ie hard to port media does its best to mock and ridicule him. I swear if someone gave me a tea bagging joke for going to a tea party I'd punch him (or her) right in the chops.

So the hard part for all of us is to cut through the bullshit and glean the truth of what's going on. It's no easy task. I spend at least an hour a day reading and thinking on how it will affect me.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


I cannot fucking believe it. We have a major anti-government spending rally and the story is basically killed. God damn liberal media just doesn't get it. Boston has two newspapers, The Herald and The Globe. Both are so blind to what the tea parties represented, wait... ignorant? Following the liberal political agenda? Heads up their asses?

Does it really matter? They do not report the Truth, they report the bias.

The Herald had a very small link to this article. They have this picture as the lead so everyone sees a nitwit in a costume instead of facing the Truth. The Truth that our government is wildly out of control. That you cannot spend your way out of a problem. Just like all the money in the world cannot buy happiness, you cannot borrow your way out of debt. But these liberal cronies just blind themselves to the fact that thier policies will bring the destruction of the American Ideal that the founding fathers fought and died for. Go ahead you nitwit reporters, worry more about the inconsequentials, I'll be the guy on the Boston Common with a torch and pitchfork!

The Globe had nothing, I mean NOTHING about the tea parties. Maybe if they don't run a story then we will just go away. I had to do a search on their site to find anything, and I get this AP story about a protest in Kentucky. Oi! Dumbasses, there was a tea party right here in Boston jackasses!

Here is a letter I sent to the Globe:
There was a protest against government waste on the state house steps and your newspaper didn't even cover it. Searching your website the next day, I get a AP story from Kentucky.

This is unacceptable. This is the Boston Globe, right? Why not report what's the issues here in Boston first, then worry about the rest of the country second.

Our government spending is way out of control, and needs to be cut back. It's time all Americans to throw off the shackles of the two party system and think for themselves. There ain't no such thing as a free lunch, if we are to give millions money for nothing, then that money has to come from someone else. Right now that someone is me. HALF of my salary goes to support these programs. I am MAD as HELL and I'm not going to take it any more.
This is why you cannot trust the mainstream media. This is why you cannot trust your authorities. If I was alive in 1778 I would be questioning the policies of our founding fathers because I want to make sure they got it right. Questioning authority is an American tradition, one we need to exercise more often.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

So Quiet.

Wow. It's so quiet out there these days. Is this a calm before a storm or the lull before the fighting renews itself. I'm not sure. It's a strange coincidence that most of the blogs have slowed down in their posting. I have because work's cracking down on us here, and by the time I get home there is too much shit to be done to slack off and read and write blogs.

Well tomorrow I'll be driving back into Boston to attend the Tea Party. I'll have my civil disturbance BOB with me, you can be sure of that. I recently added a Guy Fawkes mask to it so I might be able to fit in better. I'll keep it in my bag unless It get a little hairy or there is videotaping going on. I'll have some sort of sign too, just need to come up with a good slogan.

I'm looking forward to April 25th, and the prepper meeting. I need to come up with some good info to hand out. Just a little package of information that will be useful. Maybe burn CD's of some of the stuff I gathered. Hopefully my brother can come. He'd fit in with his tin foil hat.

I'm to the point that it's time for me to do an inventory of my food stores. I need to sit down and figure out what I got and what I need to focus on next. The bulk of my next food purchases will be grains and other dried bulk items. Hard red winter wheat should start to be available about the end of May, so I should order more mylar bags and O2 absorbers now. And I'm running low on foodsaver bags, so I'll add them to the list. And I need a grain grinder, and a backup.

So much to do, so little time.

I've decided on another Jeep. I found a '04 Grand Cherokee Laredo with 66k miles for $7k. NADA guide says it should be $9800. I'm buying it from a repo guy, but I thoroughly checked it out anyways. Mechanically it's just about perfect. It has the small oil leak that is very common on the back passenger side corner of the valve cover. Other than that there are a few cosmetic things that they dealer will take care of. Removing the half-assed tint job, someone keyed the side, and the previous owner had a home-installed suped up radio - all the wires will be pulled and disconnected.

I think I found a good deal. I would have liked a '99 or '01 Cherokee, to fix up, but I really need the reliability of a newer car right now. I used to have a trailer hitch, so that is upgrade #1. I need to get that done ASAP. Next up is a 2" lift, and new rims and tires. Then a roof rack. Odds are I can make it out of conduit and weld it together myself. Yes, I know it's galvanized and it makes a poisonous gas when welded.

Then would be bumper upgrades ans rock rails. I found a site that has them for ~$400 for the rails. Bumpers are expensive, especially if you want to mount a tire like I want to. But that's down the road. Way, down the road.

I'll end this post with a bit of a rant. It looks to me that the Republican Party is trying to grasp the reigns of the grassroots Tea Parties and other spontaneous anti-stupidity rallies. Let me be 100% clear Republicans and Democrats are the same. All they want is power, and they don't give a rat's ass about you, me or any of the other "little people." Don't let them do that. don't let the nitwits of ANY political party hijack this demonstration of the people.

It's time for the rise of a third, and even a fourth and fifth political party to end the reign of the Democrats and Republicans. Under their watch, the country has declined in both quality of it's economy, the quality of life, and the social quality. (With the notable exceptions of desegregation and suffrage)

Both political parties lie, cheat and steal when in power, and do the same to get back into power. It' time for the American people to wake the fuck up and toss these bums out.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Random musings

I wonder what America would really be like if the balloon goes up. We preppers read these doomsday articles and dire predictions and we all, and I'm guilty of it too, figure we have it under control. We have food, water, weapons, medical kits, heirloom seeds and a plan. What's the first rule of combat? No plan survives contact with the enemy. So it is still a good thing to do, matter o fact it's an excellent thing to do - plan for contingencies. But keep it in the back of your mind that your plan isn't going to be perfect.

I've seen it in the IT industry again and again. Some manager gets this project plan put together and rigidly sticks to it regardless to the changing scope of the project or the political ramifications of the implementation, etc. and etc. Project dissolves into a death spiral, and sometimes takes the management or a engineer down with it.

The most important skill we have as preppers is our ability to think on our feet. To think outside of the barriers of "conventional" thought. While everyone was happily partaking in irrational exuberance, we were quietly noticing warning signs and doing something to protect ourselves and our families from the worst case scenario.

Plans are good, in they can prevent panic. Take a look at our government right now and it's economic policies. Does that look like they have a plan? Or does it look like they are tossing shit at the problem and seeing what sticks? I'd give my left nut to be in on some of their planning sessions. Sitting in a lawn chair eating nachos and drinking beer while the most powerful men in the world shit themselves would be quite a show.

I guess the point of all this is to have a plan, but don't let it constrain you. Don't back yourself into a corner. This would include those of you out there that have a permanent retreat. If it gets bad enough, leave!

I'm quietly looking at the rally on wall street in simple awe. Awe at the brutal stupidity of the Human Being. I was suckered in for a few days thinking, "Hey, this might be over." But then I saw another 650k jobs lost. That's what you need to watch. The economy will not and CAN not turn around unless unemployment goes down drastically. It's simple. Our economy is based on spending, so if people continue to lose more and more jobs then that's more and more people not buying cars, taking vacations, gettign that big-screen TV, or even just going out for a drive, or a movie, or dinner.

This rally on Wall street is just a false sense of hope. Americans are buying guns and ammo like your getting a happy ending with each box of 50 shells! Guns are still flying off of the shelves. In some places it's impossible for you to get even common ammo calibers. Thankfully, I don't have that problem, but I've been told that .380 ammo is impossible to find. I found it but it wasn't cheap, that is for sure.

At the gun club, we are getting record numbers of applicants. Of the existing members, many of them are starting to reload ammo to save money, or to make sure they have enough ammo in whatever weird caliber they use. In the 6 months before this not one picked up reloading, but now we have 6-7 starting out. That's just crazy.

So if we head to inflation, I should get a big car loan. If we are going for a deflation, I need to own it outright. I'm leaning inflationary right now, so I'm going to try for a $10k or so Grand Cherokee. The one I'd like to get is an '04 Freedom edition that looks nice, has 55k miles on it and has my beloved straight 6. I haven't seen any other '04's worth looking at a second time so If I cannot get that one due to financing, I'm getting a regular Cherokee. I'm off to the dealer once I get this post done.

I'm going to the prepper gathering at:

APRIL 25TH 1PM at Bugaboo Steakhouse 345 Cochituate Rd Framingham MA.

So if you can make it I'll be glad to see you. I'm trying to get my brother to come along, between the two of us we can liven any party. He's more into the tin foil hat stuff, me being the older and more level-headed one. I got to think of some things to bring along as handouts. The dissemination of information at this place, plus meeting local contacts is what this is all about.

As for April 15th, I'm going to try to go to the tea party in Boston after work. I'm still trying to get "Al" to come along, he needs to be exposed to this stuff. Plus, I'll need someone there to bail me out! Just Kidding!

Well hope everyone is prepping like crazy. I am. Time for me to switch from canned goods to lighter bulk foods. I'm getting to the point I have too much canned food to easily transport. More on that in another post. Until then,

Relax, it's only the end of the world as we know it!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Busy as heck.

Well sorry for dropping off of the face of the earth for the last few days. Work has been insanely busy, and it looks like my job isn't as recession-proof as I thought.

Well I shouldn't say that. More likely the stress of doing more with less is affecting everyone in my section. People are making mistakes, the boss is getting stressed out of his mind. The issue is the boss has no idea how to deal with stress so he's lashing out at anyone and everyone.

I had a meeting with the boss and he said "You don't have to be happy to work here." BULL. FUCKING. SHIT. I get a fair salary to do a good job, but this piling on until I feel like a galley slave isn't worth the stress. So if you know of a company in Boston hiring a Sr. Systems Engineer who is real good with VMware, Windows, etc. drop me a line. Even in this crappy economy IT people are getting jobs. We Engineers are what keeps business running.

Who knows I might get a shorter commute? Woo-Hoo!

Anyway, the G20 went without much fanfare. BHO has learned to keep his mouth shut if he wants this false rally to keep going. The market looked like it was going to crack 8000 before tanking to about 7800. The government doesn't want to accept the repayment of the TARP loans, because they want to hold ont the reins of power. Big shocker there.

Glen Beck debunked the whole FEMA concentration camp conspiracy theory yesterday. I did a while ago, can't find the post though. So yeah I got cable again. I have it recording Glenn Beck until he pisses me off, it's worth watching while making dinner and such.

I still have to decide on what to do about a car, my gap insurance hasn't cleared up the car loan so I'm stuck in limbo until that car loan is off of my credit report. Banks are VERY stingy with their capital right now... That's the whole credit crunch fucking me. At least I should get a low interest rate.

It's tough walking away from a job. I've been here for over 5 years, and in the IT industry that's a long time. Back in the .com days i was hopping jobs every 18 months. The main thing I need to accomplish is to get my VCP certification. With that I'm golden. I just need to review the test materials, I work in VMware every day.

One of the things the boss is doing to piss me off is yelling at me for doing anything, I mean anything non-work related and he's bitching at me. He's right but c'mon. He's bitching at me for reading work-related blogs now. I feel it's just a matter of time before the verbal warning, then the written, then the pink slip. So I'll get the resume working, I should start to have interviews in a month at the worst. Just sucks leaving a recession-proof job. I'll obviously be going for companies that are as recession-proof.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Gardening and BOV's

Well I planted my cabbage plant in the garden and I noticed the garlic plants are starting to come up. I cannot wait until they are finished growing. Fresh garlic from the garden. Yummy.

I bought some rabbit fence to keep the little bastards away from my abused cabbage plant, and the onions going in next week. $23 for 50'... seems expensive. I don't need that much now, but It's good to have extra.

I also started the next batch of seeds for lettuce. The six plants I started already are going in the ground this weekend, so I have two batches seperated by two weeks to (hopefully) give me fresh lettuce for most of the spring.

On the vehicle front, I've decided to stick with a Jeep, either a Grand Cherokee or a Wrangler. I'm going to test drive a Wrangler tomorrow, to see if I fit. At 6'3" and 300+ I take up a lot of cubic footage. This will get me leaning one way or the other.

I'm concerned enough about the economy that my primary vehicle will be my BOV - Bug Out Vehicle. I'm leaning towards jeeps with the I6 engine because of it's reliability. I've owned two, and I have 100% confidence in them. I can't say the same for the shitty dodge engines they have been using since '05.

Now I can get a '97 - '01 Grand Cherokee for about $2500 - $3500. I can't get a wrangler for that, but those Grand Cherokees have plenty of aftermarket parts to make them a better BOV. After the first year I'm estimating another $1500 to keep it on the road and running well.

The other option is to get a Jeep for about $7k with a small loan. Monthly payments would be about $200/mo for a 3 year loan. I wouldn't need to put much more in it the next year, and can play the odds I'll need no major repairs.

In either case I will be spending cash on upgrades. To get to some of the sneaky hiding spots I know of I need 6"+ of ground clearance. A 2" lift kit is all I'd need on either, and that doesn't require any other changes to the car. Odometer will still be accurate, stock shocks and sway bar will be fine. At the same time I can change to offset deep dish rims for a wider stance and bigger tires. I'll replace the wheel bearings before this so they will be fresh for the new rims, as I have heard the offset rims add to wheel bearing wear.

So in 2-3 years I'll buy another car, and keep whatever I get as a spare project car, but in reality it will be the BOV.

Now comes the decision between Wrangler and Cherokee. The Wrangler is better at getting at really nasty places. But it has limited cargo capacity. It can tow a small trailer like I own with no trouble, but you're not taking that trailer deep into the woods over rock and mud. Not going to happen. The Cherokee has better cargo capacity but only comes in an automatic. Aftermarket "offroad" parts are available, but not as wide a selection.

Now I will admit to always wanting to buy a Wrangler since I was a kid. If I get one I'll need a hard top here in new england. Why can't these decisions be easy?