Saturday, November 12, 2011

SDS Daily Update for Saturday, November 12, 2011

Three Days In Real America

I spent three days this week traveling the back roads of rural Texas, en route to various meetings for work.  Places like Abilene are over a thousand miles away from New York and Washington.  Folks go quietly about their daily business, raising families, managing businesses, working on farms to raise our food.

It's easy to get sucked into 24 news cycles and to feel the stress that comes with overdosing on internet news, cable news, and talk radio news.  My time away from all of that this week helped me keep things in perspective.  Regardless of what's happening to our economy and in geopolitics, we need to remind ourselves that every day, the sun still rises in east and sets in the west.  Summer will come, followed by Fall and then Winter. 

The lesson here is that we need to find things that help us keep everything in perspective. 

Beatdown of Elderly Man Caught on Tape

At least they didn't have a gun.  Or maybe they did and didn't elect to use it.  This is precisely the kind of violence we should be prepared to handle, especially when in the big cities.

Nationwide Test of EAS

The prepper boards are full of smack talk about the first ever nationwide EAS test earlier this week. Here's a pic of me waiting with bated breath to hear it:

I know I make being a prepper look cool.  Don't try this yourself unless you can make it look as well as, if not better, than I can.

I've perused the various prepper/survivalist boards to see how others scored it.  The term "epic fail" appeared a lot.  Apparently a lot of folks could not hear it for one reason or another.  I will tell you that the EAS tone did not go through WSM 650 AM's iPhone app for whatever reason.  The stream went silent for a minute and then picked back up.

A lot of folks are hating on DHS and the FCC over this right now.  Rather than talking smack, I think it's more constructive to use this as a learning experience so those agencies can get it right the next time.  Rome wasn't built in a day, after all.

Got Me Some Buckets of Beans and Pasta Packed in CO2 and Stuff

Last weekend I managed to get four large buckets packed with beans and pasta using the dry ice method.  I learned a lot from the experience.  Some random observations:

  • I bought way too much dry ice.  You need very little, even if you're doing a lot of buckets.
  • I had so much dry ice I elected to put some at the bottom of the bucket AND the top as well. 
  • I'm not sure it's cost effective to do it yourself, unless you get a really good deal on whatever product you're storing.  The gamma seal lids and the buckets add to the cost, so make sure you price that into your decision matrix on DIY vs. buying it already sealed.
  • Dry ice is much easier to work with than I expected.  You can touch it with your hands...just not for very long. 
  • The next time I elect to pack food myself, I think I will simply use the little oxygen absorber packs.  I'm also wondering if I could take a shop vac, put the crevice tool on it, cover the suction part with a piece of screen, and literally suck the air out of the mylar bag before sealing it. 
  • I will be storing a lot of beans and rice soon.  I need to start eating more of it in my diet.

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