Saturday, November 10, 2018

Time to clean up the browser tabs. Again.

This is a bad habit of mine-collecting a bunch of browser tabs that I want to make note of on the blog and then never getting around to it. Some of these have been hanging around for weeks, so I don't even remember where they came from.

The Master of Disguise

First, a former CIA Chief of Disguise (Who knew?) gives a brief overview if how spies uses disguises. Since we live in an increasingly surveillance-heavy world, this could be the starting point for learning a useful skill.

Bike Stuff

A bike is quiet transportation that burns no fuel other than what you eat. In a situation where things went bad, it could enable you to move faster, thereby expanding your range of operations considerably. Bicycles, properly equipped, will also allow you to carry more weight than you can carry alone.

Eventually we need to talk about small engine bicycle conversions. They're very fuel efficient and can turn a couple of gallons of gas into a couple of hundred miles traveled.

Angle Firing

Shooting a rifle accurately is relatively simple as long as everything is on the same level. If we shoot a rifle over a long enough level area, wind resistance and gravity will eventually make the bullet curve down and impact the ground. Throw in some up- or downhill and thing get more complicated. The Rifleman’s Rule (Angle Firing) gives you the tools to understand how to hit your target firing up- or downhill.


8 over-the-counter items that you should have on hand. Yes, they could conceivably save your life, or the life of someone under your care. I just don't care for click-bait titles.

Well, that's allowed me to reduce the tabs by a decent amount. Until I need to do it again.

Friday, November 09, 2018

If you're going to bug out, bug out early

Some California residents are learning a lesson that we in the preparedness community have know for a long time--If you're going to evacuate, you have to do it early. Unfortunately some of them learned this lesson at the cost of their lives.

So far, 5 have lost that race. I expect more will be found.

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Who-wee, it's Fall, ya'll

It's 5 weeks or so since I heralded the arrival of what was going to pass for Fall, at least for a while. That weather, I guess something like an Indian Summer, hung on and kept beating back the occasional Fall day that managed to sneak in.

Boy howdy, that's over. It's Fall, the leaves are turning and falling and it's cooled off to more or less what it should be at this time of year. It was 70, give or take, today, and that's the warmest it's going to be, as far as the 10 day forecast is concerned. They've even got the little snowflake icon out for next Tuesday night.

We did get to enjoy the likely last Fall weekend by pulling the RV up toward the Virginia border. I was able to enjoy setting it up Friday afternoon in a driving rain, but the rest of the weekend was actually quite nice. Now the RV is sitting in the driveway and I'm frantically trying to complete the Fall project list for it before stuffing it under the cover and calling it a season. Some projects may just get skipped if their fellows on the list don't start going better.

I have gotten some fall projects around the house under way, but rain has been a constant delaying factor. Well, the long range forecast for my area did say wetter than usual. There's still a lot to do, and things get added all the time. At least I can always put on more clothes. This summer I would have needed to carry an air conditioner strapped to my back to work outside during the hot part of the day.

Some of the new project items are nothing more than necessary maintenance caused by using various pieces of equipment. Those are boring by and large, so I won't bore you with them. Use your imagination.

Some of them, though, are more fun-for various values of fun. I obtained a good deal on a Bearcat TrunkTracker V scanner. Too many local government agencies, the NC Highway Patrol, the state Department of Transportation and a number of  local utilities have moved to digital trunked radio systems, and my old Radio Shack gear wasn't able to deal with that during our hurricanes. When there are trees down, power outages and floods, I like to listen in on what's going on.

Of course, this means another antenna if you want to drag in the best signal. Fortunately I have the antenna and all the parts except for cable (now remedied) , and I just have to hurry up and get it up. The antenna-you people have dirty minds.

Then there's that mast for the weather station. That's going to wind up needing a bucket lift, so I want to combine that with some other high work. I'll need an extra pair of experienced hands, and that's where the hold up is. Mountain Man is willing, but currently swamped with his own issues. I may get to experience a bit of what the linemen get during the winter by the time he frees up.

Then there's the pickup truck that followed me home. Well, it followed me after I tracked it down on Crag's List. I've wanted one for years, and I'm not getting any younger. It's a 2001 GMC Sierra 1500, rather gently used for it's age. I'm pretty sure I bought Granddad's pickup. It has 140,000 miles on the clock; is in excellent shape mechanically and very good condition cosmetically. I am making some changes, including undoing a rather unfortunate chrome fetish. Most of them are reasonably low cost. The three big things will be replacing the headlamp housings and lighting with new housings and LED lighting, getting a bedliner shot in and putting a modern stereo into it. The stereo will wait for a while due to cost.

I'll be selling my Subaru to pay for all this, and I really don't feel bad about stepping back 10 years on the age of my vehicle-I think of it as "Back to the Future". While the Subie's been an OK car, I have learned to detest CVT transmissions, smart keys and all the rest of the techno idiocy that has been crammed into recent vehicles. The very few things I may want can be retrofitted for a reasonable price should I decide to do so.

Mrs. Freeholder is convinced I've slipped a gear or two, but she is being quite accommodating. As I live in large part on her suffrage, that's a good thing.

Lastly, Fall has brought the inevitable infestation of politics. I'm watching the post mortem with interest. I think the Democrats are convinced they won bigger than they did, while Republicans don't seem to understand why they lost the House. (Hint, Paul Ryan and his posse of assclowns.) I figure the next year or so is going to be very entertaining as the Dems find out they haven't won all that much and the Republicans in the Senate flounder about trying to figure out how to lose that majority in 2020. My belief is that if the Republicans listened to their President, 2020 will be a run away victory in the Senate and they will be able to take back the House, but politicians oddly don't listen to me.

So enough of all this. I still have some things to do before I can settle in for the evening. Laundry, here I come!