Thur. April 9, 2020 – hopefully a nice day


Warm and damp.

Yesterday was hot and steamy. Started out reasonably enough but soon was hot. And steamy. Did I mention steamy? And hot?

Morning was still overcast and rain was forecast so I didn’t do much outside until after lunch. Then it was yard work, garden, and trees.

If the trees weren’t going to shade the garden, I’d have left them, but I need the sun on the raised beds. And with hurricane season only a short time away, I went ahead and trimmed near the utility lines, since I had the saw and ladder out.

I’m debating whether to do the tree trimming on the oak in the front yard or not. I usually trim back the branches over the house, and every couple of years I get out the rope saw and take down some dead wood high up in the tree. There are other things that are a priority but if I’m in the zone and have the tools out anyway….

I need to get back to my driveway/garage storage and organize party. I need to get whatever seeds I hope to plant this year in the ground. I usually plant seedlings from Lowes or HD, but I’m not going shopping ATM. I’ve got seeds. I’m a bit surprised at some of the stories I’m seeing of seeds being sold out, both in the stores and online. I guess maybe I’m not the only one hoping to get a garden in this year. Whatever the motivation, I’m glad that others are planting. The learning curve is steep.

Chickens are sold out too. Hmm.

Too many people are too invested in particular outcomes for me to believe 99% of the reporting on wuflu right now. I’m just going to stay the course, watch for primary sources of indirect and secondary indicators, and act as if my life depended on it.

The wuflu won’t be the end of everything, nor will the economic impacts, nor will the cultural impacts. As a nation we’ve been through worse versions of all those things. WE may not survive, and WE may not return to a world we expect, but PEOPLE will. And they will muddle through or prosper or not. I intend to make it through. What’s on the other side I can’t predict, as I think this is one of those times when everything changes. I thought that last year, and haven’t changed my mind. War, pestilence, and plague. They were overdue.

I don’t know how long it will take but think about the changes in one lifetime, from 1900 to 1965. Who would have predicted the destruction of the British Empire, the rise of America, the Cold War, and Communism? Or look at 1965 to 2020. Who would have predicted the fall of the Soviet Union, the rise of China, the changes wrought by PCs and the internet? The massive financialization of everything? Or the destruction of western culture?

Things change, this is just the pebble that started the boulder rolling down hill. Something would have. It was time.

Stay in, stay safe.



Fri. Jan. 31, 2020 – where does the time go?

Cool and wet. [50F and 99%RH]

Yesterday stayed chilly. I was in long pants and a mid-weight jacket all day.

Some prepping got done this week but not enough.

People seem to be as polarized by the coronavirus as they are by politics. People I’ve been reading for years and generally like and respect are coming down on both sides like, hard. Which is nuts. It doesn’t MATTER if the normal flu kills 2000 or 20000 a year. We go to great lengths to avoid it, including poisoning ourselves and our kids with vaccine cocktails every year. Flu’s got nothing to do with WuFlu, it’s a false dichotomy. Flu is going to kill those folks, and the WuFlu is going to kill MORE folks. They’re BOTH killers and to be avoided.

Now, my feeling is, china inc KNOWS that regular flu kills a bunch of people and no one gets quarantined. But China inc just quarantined 50 MILLION people, and doesn’t seem to think they’ll need food soon. Which is ominous. Bringing food in breaks the quarantine. A hundred cubic yards of mixed stone and dirt makes a difficult barricade to pass with your food and water trucks too, you know, like it’s WAY harder than moving a red and white striped 2×4…. So either no one’s thought this through, or they HAVE and they made a decision we won’t like.

No one would cancel LNY and all tourism without believing or knowing something that WE DON’T KNOW. To pretend that we know better than the chinese making those decisions is ludicrous. They are taking this CRAZY seriously. I think we should too.

I’m taking my standard precautions. I’m not doing anything irrevocable or irreversible but I am taking steps. I’ve got a good supply of masks. My gloves were aging out (they get fragile) so I picked some up. I’ve got lots of bleach but will be watching closely to see if I want more. I’ve got bleach rated sprayers, rubber boots, and tyvek. I’ve got eye pro.

I have been rebuilding food stocks run down by the rats and time, and added 80 pounds of rice today. Also various and sundry other food. My secondary has a great deal of bulk from the first ebola scare. Much might be stale, but it’s there as a back up. I’m not throwing out that rice unless it smells bad.

I’m watching for secondary effects. Our Just In Time and Lean management systems mean that any disruption in the flow of materials and parts from China will effect manufacturing and commerce worldwide. That’s gonna be hard on some companies. In turn it will be hard on workers, and also banks. China focused on internal issues will either have them looking for enemies/scapegoats/targets or will distract them from their empire building… who knows which? Keep your eyes open though. If they stop buying Tbills, the financial house of cards could collapse and that can trigger all sorts of unpleasantness too.

There’s basically a whole bunch of different prepper scenarios that can come out of this. No matter what happens outside China, there already are and will continue to be disastrous effects internally and globally from the disruptions already under way.

The BEST that can come from this if it ended tomorrow would be supply chain disruptions, and the knock on effects from that. The worst is this being the tip of the iceburg of trouble, all the way to mass death and collapse.

I expect to be somewhere in the middle, but to think it will be nothing at all is nuts.


Keep stacking.

Mon. Aug. 5, 2019 – home free

Sunny and hot today, I assume. I’m hopefully still in bed. My back hurts and my neck is sore and stiff from all the unfamiliar beds and pillows this past week.

I’ll be doing some security upgrades around the house, hopefully this week or next. Number one daughter needs some reassurance and they were on my list anyway, so time to execute.

My FIL, in an incredible display of selfishness and absolute cluelessness insisted on watching the nightly news every day this week at 6pm with both daughters sitting next to him. Given that this week included 3 mass shootings and the normal variety of Boston, NYFC big city ills, daughters were hammered with crime and murder for about 8 hours total. I didn’t realize what was going on, because I was doing other things in the house at the times, and didn’t think anyone would be that stupid. (He could have just watched at 10pm after the girls were in bed.) When I realized what was going on a couple of days ago, I exploded that maybe he could shut off the nonstop stream of murder and violence for a couple of hours while the kids were sitting there waiting for dinner and bed…. but somehow I’M the bad guy.

So now that we’re home, daughter says she’s scared to be here, scared that someone will break in through her window or shoot her in her bedroom. Thanks grandpa, that’s awesome. We’ve been fairly open with her about the neighborhood and real risks (very low, and mostly property crime) but I wasn’t there to address her concerns or explain anything about most of the crimes being reported on the nightly news, or to give context to it. I tried to do some of that last night, pointing out that it’s only news because it is rare, etc. and had a helpful article comparing the coverage of a driveby in Chicago with 7 injured victims vs the mass shooting coverage. NO coverage of Chicago because the same or worse happens every week (outside of Chicago sources.) Not SUPER helpful because she knows Grandma Flandrey and my sibs still live in the Chicago area, and people are getting shot there in job lots…

Anyway, I hope that some small upgrades will make her feel a bit safer at home. And it might be time to let her know about some of the other measures we take to be able to defend ourselves. One of her complaints to me was that she didn’t know where any weapons were (“and I know there are some daddy because I know you.”)

In a bigger picture look, we had the driveby shooting at our pool last year (and the attempted burglary there of our concession stand money). We had a guy jacked for his cell phone a couple of blocks away while walking his dog. Her school district had 2 lockdowns for “credible threats” last year. One of our friends had his elderly parents chase off home invasion robbers (and his kids probably told my kids) last year. We had the vehicle break in last month across the street, and the crazy ringing our doorbell at 3am. We had one of her friend’s mom robbed at gunpoint in the Costco parking lot… so her concerns are not without some basis. It’s not JUST tv news driving it.

Hell, add in the stuff she doesn’t know about, like the slavers getting busted across from her YMCA and all the drug trafficking I hear on the scanner, and maybe it is time to move.

Let me know what you guys think.


Fri. Feb. 15, 2019 – just like that, another week gone

62F and pretty damp this am…

Going on 60Minutes and talking about your conspiracy to remove the President from office is a pretty big deal….taking steps to do so is treason. Either we take this sort of thing seriously and start locking people up, or it’s a free pass for anyone to give it a try.

Or, expect a series of cancer deaths, single vehicle crashes, and unexplained assaults…..

Whatever happens, the rest of the world powers will know about the attempt and make decisions based on that.

File this one under “Decline and Fall.”


Tues. Nov. 20, 2018 – maybe it’s already started…

44F and damp this morning. Dreary.

With the current stock market turmoil, and all the down days, I’m beginning to think the next meltdown has started. We’re way overdue. Looking at the charts for 2008, there was a lot of down, partial recovery, then down some more. The trend was down though.

Then there is this, from Simon Black, so get out your salt shaker, but still….

And then this, along with Amazon being responsible for about 9% of S&P losses all by itself…

And this

Add the fraud reports coming out of Nissan and various banks (up markets will hide a lot of shenanigans)…

This may really be it. Make sure you have some cash around for the coming week, pay anything you can, and check all your online balances so you know what you’ve got.


Fri. July 20, 2018 – busy week

Another hot one, 80F at 6am. Forecast for record heat.

Whether we’re swirling around the edge of the toilet bowl, or at the dawn of a new age, it’s pretty clear that big changes are happening in the world. The march to war might be delayed a bit, or we might be getting played while our enemies align themselves and get ready. We might be headed toward civil war, as people on both sides seem almost to yearn for it. Who knows?

Or we might be headed into a general collapse. I think it’s well underway and we just don’t see the signs. Today is pretty much like yesterday, and so it’s been throughout history. Certainly our star is not ascending.

We have MASSIVE homelessness. We have a stunning number of people on welfare and other forms of .gov aid. We have lost control of our borders to the point that somewhere around 10% of the population is currently foreign invaders. They have spread throughout the nation, and are suddenly visible, like when a geometric progression doubles to the point you see it, then doubles again… just consider the number of machete attacks.

If people defecating in the streets, gangs pulling people out of buildings and hacking them to death, and record low workforce participation rates aren’t enough, consider the rise of socialism in our political realm. This is an idea that is opposite to our national character, but the long march has been so effective that openly socialist candidates can win party primaries. Our elites get wealthier, while our ‘normals’ get poorer, and civic institutions degrade. [consider than when I was young, it was entirely normal that a man in a skilled trade, as the sole breadwinner, would be able to afford a cabin on a lake, a pontoon boat, snowmobiles, a camper, etc. Contrast that to today.]

The very things we establish government to provide are no longer working. Clean water. Education. Safety and rule of law. Public works infrastructure.

Consider just thirty years ago. What was the relationship of the public to cops? Bottled water? Aid organizations? Refugees? What did inner cities look like? Gangs? Public infrastructure? What was public morality like? What was cultural sexuality like? Cultural violence?

Consider 40 years. 50.

I think we don’t see it because we are too close to the problem. Convince me otherwise. Or what have you done to prep this week??


Thur. June 28, 2018 – what again??

79F at 720 says “yes again, and harder too” for Houston.

I didn’t link directly to this story when it was reported, because I was waiting for more info, like why he was targeted at 330am. But now I’ll link to Peter and thru him to Ferfal….

““This is the worst kind of crime against a family,” Sheriff Troy Nehls said. “Three crooks forcing their way into a home in the middle of the night is appalling. To make matters worse, they accosted a 7-year-old child. They’re cowards, to say the least.”

Nehls said the father kept telling the intruders there was no money and to take jewelry or a car, but the masked men weren’t satisfied.”

Like peter and ferfal, I think we’ll see much more of this, as we have imported people from places where it is much more common, and despite the Dow doing well, the economy in general is still tough for most people.

So, what can you do?

Don’t flaunt wealth. Keep in mind that someone else considers wealth might be much less than what you do.

Be aware of your surroundings. LOOK for cars following you, LOOK for cars parked in your area with people in them. This guy was targeted. Someone found out where he lived. My neighbor that was at the Y while her home was burgled believes targeting is the only thing that makes sense. The staff at your local haunt may be trustworthy, or not. They may have a brother with a gang problem, or who is a junkie.

Vary your routine.

Harden you home. Lock the dang doors. Install simple upgrades to strengthen entrances. Install more complex upgrades if appropriate. [added some links below] LOOK at your home when you return from a trip– is anything out of place?

Harden your heart. Make the decision about your response ahead of time. It’s not just you or your money at risk. The cop calls the attackers “cowards” which is the same knee-jerk name calling as with terrorists. They are not cowards. They are a lot of things, but afraid isn’t one. Trusting in the goodwill of someone who has ALREADY threatened to hurt or kill you is a REALLY bad idea.

Arm yourself and become at minimum familiar with the use of the weapon. Better to get actual training in its use. Keep it close to hand. Your physical security measures are meant to delay attackers while you arm yourself.

Consider having “give up” money or jewelry. I have an envelop of cash in my desk drawer. It looks like more than it is, and is my “here, get out, it’s all I have” wad. Same for my money clip when I’m out of the house. I’m not suggesting “do whatever they say and you’ll be fine” but I AM suggesting that a level of compliance gains you time, space, and helps gauge their intent. It can also provide the distraction you need to defend yourself.

Beyond all this though, you need the mindset that this stuff happens. Right here in your town, in your home, in your area.

Like terror attacks, mass shootings, or natural disasters, IT CAN HAPPEN TO YOU. Take steps.


[edited to clean up the writing.]

Fri. June 1, 2018 – summer and hurricane season are here…

A bit warmer today, with 79F and 87%RH this morning. Clear blue skies and sunny. Ah, summer.

Hurricane season is kicking off here in the Gulf Region (I know, RBT, I know), so it’s time to ramp up the seasonal preps. As I do, I’ll mention it here…. 😉

As an example of the continuing degradation of the public sphere, can anyone here imagine, in your wildest dreams, that someone would call the daughter of the President and a Whitehouse staffer, a “feckless c#nt” on a national TV show?

After [some] public outcry and [some] advertisers bailed, she said ” It was inappropriate and inexcusable. I crossed a line, and I deeply regret it.”

What she means is “I MOVED a line, and next time it will be worse.”

Again, I know I’m ‘doom and gloom’ but think about what it means for our society that stuff like this is happening. Think about the ‘frog boiling’ aspects of it. I can’t see it ending up anywhere nice, and I can’t see it taking very much longer to get there.

Remember, she thought she would be REWARDED by people for what she said. Her staff full of writers did too. As did her Producers.