Category: prepping

Mon. Oct. 30, 2023 – So close to Halloween…

Cool. Cold even. Front has arrived. Yesterday was hot, mid to high 80s with humid stagnant air. Nothing was moving and sweat was dripping off me as I worked on my decorations. Then the wind picked up, and the temps dropped. Mid 60s after dark, with gusting winds. Today should be cooler all day.

Yup, I finally got some decor set up. First I had to get a couple of pickups done. One pick up was some stuff to sell at my next non-prepping hobby swapmeet day, the next was for the BOL. The BOL’s was a couple of hundred feet of barbed wire. I’m not sure where I’ll use it, or if I’ll sell it to someone up there, but I’d rather have it than not. It’s used, but rolled neatly. I’ve been trying to buy some for a year but it goes for too much money. Finally got some.

Came home and started on decor in earnest. Felt a couple of drops of rain, but nothing real. Kept at it until dusk. Started lighting stuff, then the power went out. 3200 affected, mostly our neighborhood. Again. Freaking third world. One of the symptoms of a collapse is civic systems break down, and with increasing severity and frequency. We went years without a blink, and now we have lost power for more than an hour several times in the last few months. They are doing a ton of infrastructure, pulling high tension lines everywhere and building out and up… but we’ve never had issues like this before.

Since their estimate was for a 3 hour outage, I decided to fire up a generator. The whole house gennie is still not installed. My trusty generac was fueled and ready, so of course the pull cord broke. The Honda 3000 started on the second crank, once I’d connected the propane bottle. Didn’t use it, because I can’t feed the house with it– no 220v output. Power came back on shortly after that anyway. We used a Jetboil backpacking cook system to make some hot water for the Mountain House chili mac… we could have made just about anything in the house or pantry, but that stuff was sitting in the kitchen from my wife’s aborted GS camping trip and neither of us wanted to cook.

Wife fired up candles because she wanted to, and because her streamlight lantern is DOA due to leaking batteries. Mine is fine, and the big coleman LED lanterns worked well too. I got out a little oil lamp, and proceeded to fight with the wick. I don’t have any small wicks here… took them to the lake. I didn’t feel like trying a propane coleman, or one of the bigger kerosene lamps. I’ll be bringing a wick home as backup…

Not a bad little dry run, and I’m moving gennie maintenance up the list, along with trying to find an electrician for the whole house install. Maybe they’ll be a bit slower this time of year, and more willing to do the work without selling me anything.

Today I’ve got more pickups, and some more decor to do. If it isn’t raining. It’s showing 50% chance of light rain, with the cold snap continuing. We’ll see…

So it’s time to check your critical systems. Batteries in the smoke detectors, and in the gun safes. Fresh fuel in the stuff that uses fuel… Spares close at hand.

And stacks.


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Sat. Sept. 30, 2023 – “nuttin’ to do Abe, nuttin’ to do…”

Definitely cooler now than a month ago. A bit of chill even in the morning air. Plenty of damp though. Extra helpings of that. Although it threatened to rain with patchy dark clouds, it missed me all day yesterday, and the clouds helped with the sun too.

It was cool enough to work on the roof getting the downed limb cut up and off the roof. Did so, and the roof is in pretty good shape. There are a couple of ridge vent shingles that I should replace and one or two roof shingles. I probably won’t, as I think it will be more disruptive to the roof to tear out the old and install the new, than to just live with the lumpy damage. Unless it leaks, then we’ll fix it.

Spent the evening with a small group of dads from the kid’s school who support a couple of the extra activities by selling concessions. Nice group of guys, I’ll do what I can to continue participating. Several I already knew from other school and community groups. There was a time in my life that I was ready to move cities if I ran into someone I knew while out and about. Now I understand the value of community a bit more.

Whether you are sizing up your competition, trying to find allies, or just looking for friends, getting out and meeting people in your area is going to be critical if you don’t already have ties to your community. I know my thinking on this subject has changed. Let’s say it’s “evolved” or “become more nuanced.” Whatever you want to call it, I’m convinced you need to know them, and they need to know you. It might be a carefully edited version of you, (but don’t think you can fool people), but they need to believe they understand you to trust you. You will also likely benefit from being able to trust (at least under a limited set of conditions) other people. Or you’ll know that they will never trust you, or that you can’t trust them. Knowledge is power.

And of course, so are resources. Keep stacking.


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Thur. Sept. 7, 2023 – boy howdy, it sure is hot

Hot AND humid. Like that was gonna change… It was extra hot yesterday though, and so I was moving a bit slowly for anything involving exposure to the flaming fusion fire in the sky.

I did my doctor appointment in the morning and was only a little late. Had a chance to talk with a neighbor about one of the other neighbors- I took the opportunity to get an update on his health and that of his ailing wife. They’d both gone into care and we hadn’t heard much. Unfortunately she died, but he’s doing OK for values of OK. Anyway meatspace put me behind, and google made it worse by not knowing exactly where the office and entrance were. Then I couldn’t find the office in the building. Normally I’d have arrived with plenty of time to get sorted, but meatspace…

Involving ourselves with other people sometimes has costs, large or small, and is sometimes messy. Still needs to happen.

I am more convinced of this than ever. You need to be a part of a group/community/circle of acquaintances. It’s like the root level certificates, someone will need to vouch for you at some point, and you will need to be ABLE to vouch for someone else… people will need to know who you are and think well of you, or at least have no reason to not think well of you. To succeed, the right people need to be in your circle. That has always been true on many levels and there isn’t any reason to think that will change. What makes them think well of you might change.

John the forensic accountant may not be valuable to anyone but John the hobbyist leather worker might. Johnny the hobbyist gunsmith might be of some use, but Joan the goatherd and part time vet tech is certainly going to be. And Juanita the cheesemaker is going to be a hero. Depending on how this whole collapse/reset/global realignment thing goes, of course. Maybe the ‘freedom squads’ will need John the forensic accountant to find the stolen money and the next step in the network of traitors most of all.

In any case, strengthen your ties to people in the real world. Know who is selling what, what they need, and where you might get it for them… Do people favors. Let them do some for you. Build some trust. You don’t need to know their kids’ names, but if they tell you they have kids, it’s helpful to remember that and ask about it once in a while… normal in-person stuff, that I’m sure isn’t that normal for many people here, or even out there in the modern world. Build some connections where we’ve been intentionally isolated and fragmented.

And stack stuff. Having stuff can’t hurt, and might make a real difference in your life, or someone else’s.


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Sun. Sept. 3, 2023 – more work, some play if I’m lucky…

It started out reasonably warm, and then got reasonably hot. Not scorching, but hot enough that I tried to stay in the shaded areas most of the day. Didn’t manage it when I was doing all the grass cutting though. I was seeing low 100s most of the afternoon and evening.

So after getting a bit crispy weed whacking and riding around on the mower, and blowing all the debris off the concrete driveways, patio, and various other hardscapes… I switched to playing with water to try to get some more areas covered by sprinklers. Some of it went easy, some, not so much.

I found several breaks by backfeeding the area I wanted to get working. One was a buried valve that had been leaking for some time. The retaining wall above it had sagged at that point, so it must have been years. In the same hole I found a drainage pipe completely filled with a 5″ root. Takes a while for a 5″ root to grow. There was another broken drainage pipe right next to it, but it only has dirt and stones in it. I might try waterjetting it, but I don’t know where it comes from or where it goes. Probably joins the other one that ends up in the lake. That might be a case of letting sleeping dogs lie.

Old boy ran several valves for zone control of his irrigation system, but he buried them near the zone and ran the control wires to the valves. Most installations have a manifold with valves in one place, and then run the zone pipes from there. I guess he thought running more conduit and wire was easier than running the water pipe. Seems nuts to me. And both control and supply are run willy nilly, without any logic that I can discover.

I’m a fan of DIY, and I’m sympathetic to “making do” and “making it work” and even “I know it’s not exactly right but it’ll last long enough..” but there are GOOD REASONS for doing stuff the way other people do it, and the way code requires it. NOBODY buries valves in the middle of the yard. Repeatedly. They might cluster them in the little hand hole boxes, or the big boxes, but they aren’t designed for direct burial. They need service and attention, which is difficult if you have to dig up the yard to find them. And if they leak, you won’t know it (as he and I found out.)

Systems should be ‘discoverable’ meaning someone else should be able to figure them out later, based on what they can see, and what the system does as they manipulate it. They also need to be maintainable. And if there is a standard, formal or informal, they should follow it as much as possible. The parts are designed to fit together and make it easier to use them in a standard configuration.

From a prepping standpoint, you might not be there! All your preps do no good if whoever is there can’t use them. From starting a generator, to running a water filter, or operating a solar system, or even accessing your secure storage (physical or cyber), make sure your systems are documented, discoverable, and maintainable. If you hide stuff, SOMEONE else should know where. If you have stuff, someone else should know it’s there somewhere. You don’t even have to be dead. You could be stuck somewhere else and your family needs your preps. You could be sick, or incapacitated, or on the run…

I admit that I’m deficient in this area. My wife could start and run the gas gennie. When I switched it to propane, she got a tour and demo, so she knows it’s different, but she hasn’t had to run it. She knows there are food, medical, cooking, and water supplies, but might not know the extent. She knows where to look though, and she knows how to use the individual pieces, or the instructions are on the gear and she’s used similar. I’m even starting with the kids, showing them where stuff is, and what it’s for.

Ideally, there is time to train everyone on everything, but in reality, even if they are willing, and you are willing, there always seems to be something more critical, or desirable that takes priority. If SHTF happens, their focus will change, and hopefully you’ll be there to walk them through it then. REALLY HOPEFULLY you never have to use any of it. We know that chances are, you’ll use some of it at some point though.

So stack it up. But also make sure you aren’t the nail that is missing from the horseshoe..


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Sat. Sept. 2, 2023 – I’m going to try to keep my Labor Day commie free…

Much cooler at the BOL than in Houston. I’m sure it will still be hot in the afternoon, but it’s very nice in the evening, and got chilly last night.

I got through my errands yesterday and finally got the truck loaded, and my butt in the seat. Made it to the BOL without incident. It’s a DUI “No refusal” weekend in Texas, so there were a lot of cops out and several people pulled over. I just locked the cruise control and drove like normal.

Of course it was dark when I got here so I don’t know for sure what I’m facing today for maintenance, but I’m assuming all the normal things- cut the grass, blow the leaves, then start on the projects. I don’t mind the work and it feels good to look at the completed job and know I did it. Still, there is a lot of work…

There’s plenty at home too, and sometimes there is something extra. I had to clear ice out of one of the freezers before I left home. It was keeping the door cracked open, and everything had defrosted except the roasts. Fortunately I saw the water on the floor and investigated. We didn’t lose much, one bag of pot stickers, and we might lose the bread when it re-freezes. That particular fridge/freezer is mostly convenience foods and they are all vac sealed and pre-cooked so should be fine as they never got warm. We’ll be eating the roasts soon anyway, just to be sure. Could have been bad to come home to it in several days so I’m glad to have caught it. Still, it was a task that wasn’t on the list and pushed everything back.

One thing I don’t recall sharing is my belief that you should have enough empty coolers to move one whole freezer to coolers if you have a problem. I buy them cheap at yard sales, estate sales, and occasionally in the returns auctions. We use them to move food between home and the BOL, we use them for drinks for the kids’ sporting events, and if we have a party. You can use them for “hay box” cooking too in bad or in normal times. It’s a great way to cook corn on the cob, for example.

Coolers are an essential prep. If you don’t already have several, think about stacking a few more. At least keep your eyes open for them. And BTW, all the parts that break are available and fairly cheap, so it’s easy to rehab one if it needs a latch, hinge, or drain plug. I keep parts for Colman and Rubbermaid in stock, and I always buy them if I see them at a sale. I consider cracks in the interior to be a no sale, but you can just seal them with marine sealant, if you are looking for a really cheap one, or you fix and keep one for backup. I also don’t think it’s necessary to buy a yeti or similar. Ordinary Colman, especially the better models, work just fine for a day or two.

Backups for your major systems are a Good Think ™.

Stack ’em up.


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Tues. Aug. 1, 2023 – ti- ai- ime AIN’T on my side, no it ain’t

Hot and humid. Hit 114F in part sun. Hit 106F in the shade. More of the same today, I think. It was so hot, I sat in the shade and in the house talking with my fisherman buddy.

At some point he saw a squirrel in the yard and pointed it out. There is a guy up here that hates squirrels and shoots them, which my buddy hates. As he put it, that is food for when things get really tough. That led me to bring up season 9 of “Alone” which I’ve mentioned here recently. They were shooting and snaring squirrels, pretty successfully, and still starving slowly. At 250 calories per squirrel, there isn’t much food on them. I pointed that out, and that everyone up here would be hunting the same squirrel, deer, and piggies if it drops in the pot. He was convinced he’d be getting plenty of game, so I played along. Who’s watching the wife and grandkids while he’s hunting? More extended family.

Oh, so now you’re feeding 20 people on squirrel and other game, same as everyone else up here. Yeah, but we aren’t JUST eating that… OK, what else are you eating? We’ll be eating from the garden. Which garden? We’ll plant one, we’ve got seeds stored up. OK, what do you eat for the months you are waiting for the harvest? Got six months of food stored? Hmmm. No. Ok, got six weeks? Hmmm. No.

So how do you feed the guards? What about all the other folks who show up looking for food? We’ll tell them “no”. What if they insist? They can try, we’ll shoot them. And what about the next ones? Shoot them too. And if they are hungry kids? Hmmm. OK, now you are the bad guy, and everyone decides you don’t deserve to have your food and stuff so they burn you out and take it.


There has been a lot of what Bruce Schneier calls “movie plot” thinking going on up here. One response, but no thought for second or third order effects.

I still think this is a lot better place to ride out any trouble, but some people haven’t given it enough thought, or considered the reactions and actions of other people. Hopefully he’ll do just that now that I’ve planted a seed.

Today if I get a chance I’ll ask him for a rough census of the deer and piggy population. That should get him thinking about how viable living off the land might actually be. He does know the area intimately, and the people that he knows he knows well. He didn’t know there was an outlaw biker clubhouse only 12 miles away though. And there are lots of places out in the country to do bad things without anyone noticing. I’m betting that at least some of the “abandoned” buildings have occupants, or users that you wouldn’t want to meet, or know what they are up to.

If I can get him to think beyond “I’ll hunt and so I’ll have food” to the idea EVERYONE will be hunting for that same food, maybe we can make some better plans.

The problem is bigger than here and what to do here. The wuflu panic had people in cities buying any piece of land in the country they could get, especially if it was near an amenity like a lake. Everyone that knows anyone in the country will be looking to head there if they can. Everyone who has been to a boy scout or girl scout, or church retreat camp will think it might be a better place to be than a burning city. But the countryside, by and large, doesn’t have the resources for a massive influx of people.

And the folks already here won’t be super happy to share. Which brings me neatly around to the idea that IF you think you might end up wanting to ‘head for the hills’ you better do it NOW and start getting yourself established. At least get your foot in the door, so you aren’t part of a wave of refugees. You’ll still be the new guy, but if you work for it, when they circle the wagons, you might be inside the circle, instead of outside.

I’m trying hard to be in the circle, and I think it’s paying off. Get busy working a plan. And stack, so you don’t show up empty handed.


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Fri. July 28, 2023 – ‘this indecision’s buggin’ me…’

Ho ho ho, it’s hotter than Hades, and sweatier than a linebacker’s jock. And it was the same yesterday too. Even sprinkled a bit of rain, but it ‘didn’t stick’. Just enough to have me scrambling to get stuff in the back of the truck covered.

Other than that scramble, I hid indoors and did cleaning and paperwork. Found a partial tub with stuff from the ‘bins’ so I sorted that too. Doesn’t feel like I got much done.

Today will be more active, one way or another. I’ve got a couple of pickups, then I’m headed to Lowes to get what I need for the BOL. Don’t know if I’ll head up today, but that is the plan. The other thing I’m waiting for is my irrigation supplies from amazon. I’d really like to take those with me too.

Can’t decide at the moment what to do. Guess I’ll play it by ear, and hope the stars align.

I’d like to keep moving forward with improvements at the BOL. If I can’t, I’ll keep working on stuff here. I have decided to rearrange my stored food to get it into the garage, and off the shelves on the patio. I still want it near to hand, but I want it in cabinets, not just on the shelves. So I’ll be bringing two metal cabinets back from the BOL when I come back. I’ll have some rearranging to do in the garage first, but I think this will work out better. I don’t need all the food to be accessible at the same time and I need a better way to protect it from rats and rust. I’ll have to move some drawer units and some shelves on the wall, and relocate some tools and supplies, but it makes sense to have the food closer to the kitchen, and the rarely used supplies deeper in the garage. It was not on my radar at all, or my list of things to do, but since I’ve packed it all in milk crates and cleared the shelves, this would be a good time to do it. It will make my wife happier to have the stuff off the patio. And that’s important too.

Take a look at your stacks. Do they still serve you? or would a change make more sense. Is the stuff you are stacking the right stuff for your current situation? Have your tastes or needs changed? Don’t be afraid to correct or revise. It’s not wasted effort if it results in being better prepared.

Make a plan, then stack it up.


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Wed. July 26, 2023 – wow stuff got expensive…

Hot and humid and more of each. Highest I saw yesterday was 94F in the shade, but it was hotter in the sun. Since it happened away from my thermometer, I’m ignoring it. Hah. Just like the rain. I only personally saw a very light spatter of rain. I know it rained heavily in some parts of town, because I saw the puddles and I asked people. But I’m ignoring that too. I can definitively state, from my own lived experience, that yesterday was hot at 94F but cooler than it has been, and that it only rained a tiny amount. That this is wrong is of no concern. Please fully fund my climate change study grant. I’m your kind of people.

Spent most of the day filling the back of my pickup with auction items. Then I dumped most of them at my secondary location. Took the rest home. Did a bit of troubleshooting on some items that didn’t immediately work, and got some results.

Cooked a couple of several-years-old steaks for dinner. Couldn’t tell them apart, despite being frozen for 2 and 4 years respectively. And they were delicious. Served them with canned corn from 2014, frozen naan bread, and pasta from a couple years ago. Those were all normal looking and delicious too.

Spent the evening looking at prices online to find cheap decking material for my temporary deck at the BOL. That led to the post title. There isn’t anything “cheap”. Sheets of OSB, plywood, and rigid foam are all 1-1/2 to 2 times more than they were. Prices have come down from their highs of a year ago, but they are still high. Even furring strips are expensive. More redneck engineering is going to be needed…

Today I’ve got a couple more pickups, and more domestic bliss. So I’ll be busy, and yet not feel like I’m getting stuff done. And compared to some, I’m a piker. Talked to someone in my circle of acquaintances that is slowly revealing more of their preps. Their family group is about 35 people, and they’ve got a shared ranch as a BOL. With a full surgical suite set up. That was the bit he shared yesterday. His pockets are deep, and his group is committed. He has access to a wide range of stuff.

He urged me to stack salt. We talked about the novel Alas Babylon, where the little town is coping well with their end of the world situation, except for the lack of dietary salt. THAT is killing people. I took that message to heart when I read it, and stacked salt some time ago. Not sure what I have in total, but I’ve got 5 gallons (30-40 pounds) of pink himilayan salt, and at least one other bucket of normal salt, as well as boxes of canning and pickling salt. I’ve got a smaller amount of iodized salt for the table too. Salt can be used for cleaning, and for preserving food as well as for eating. We also talked briefly about my “bread kit” buckets – one bucket with flour, salt, yeast packets, and a bottle or two of oil, and storing and using fat to “pot” or preserve meat.

The discussion was a nice validation of my own preps, with a good reminder of a basic prep item for long term survival, and some more exotic thinking about things getting worse than most people might consider. There are others out there doing what we do. They are planning, and executing. You are not alone, and there are serious people who are taking it farther than you…

So stack a few things. Consider your gaps, and fill them. Know that others are too.


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Wed. June 28, 2023 – ‘life of a repo man’s always intense…’

Oh my, hot hot and more hot. Yesterday started at 78F with a breeze off the lake that felt nice in the shade. Eventually it got to 100F in the shade, and humidity in the high 80s. It was 84F at 11pm, so I skipped radio and dock time.

I did get a lot of progress made. The decision to start backfilling the patio area was a good one. It’s filling in, and the mounds of dirt in the yard are going away which is win-win. My productivity was dropping, so it was a good time to change things up a bit. The heat is draining, and climbing in and out of the machines is taking a toll.

I even stopped at 8pm so I could use the remaining light to figure out what broke and how to fix the washing machine drain line. I ripped it up good getting that root ball out… I’m going to call the septic guy and see if he wants to take a look. Where the pipe enters the tank is loose, and I think it should be tight. Otherwise, I’d just replace the elbows and repair the pipe myself. I’m going to have to start stocking 2″ pvc if I keep digging. What a maroon. Eh Doc?


Water. Water and prepping. You can’t have too much. Our new septic system is sized for 750 gallons A DAY. Obviously during a disaster or grid down, you won’t be using that much, but it takes far more than people think. Standard prepper lore is 1 gallon per person per day, and half for each pet. That is SURVIVAL. NOT living. Figure more like 5 gallons each to maintain some little bit of normality. You need drinking water, hygiene water, cooking water, washing up water, and if the event lasts long enough, clothes washing water…

Store lots. As much as you have room for, in different containers. Have multiple ways to treat and make water potable. Your plan should include stored drinking water, stored clean water that can be used for washing, food prep, and made into drinking water.

You should have a filter that will supply your whole family’s needs every day. You should have the means to capture and store water in a long term event. I’ve got a kiddie pool to capture rain water. But I have stored water in case the rainwater or surface water is contaminated. My rainwater capture for the garden doubles as stored “can be made drinkable” water. Counting the rain barrels I’ve got over 500 gallons stored. Over 100 gallons are supposedly ‘ready to drink’ but I usually run it through a Britta filter just for taste. If there was any issue visible or smellable, I’d filter or treat with bleach.

Water treatment plans should include everything from liquid bleach (unsented, plain bleach), Porta-aqua tablets, iodine, the ability to filter and to boil, UV sterilization (there were some neat pen style sterilizers but I never bought one) but systems designed for drinking water aren’t uncommon, and even distillers or reverse osmosis systems (like on a boat) are available.

Know the theory of building a solar still as bushcraft, survival lore, or camping, just in case. Better to practice it but I’m somewhat realistic… at least stack a roll of clear plastic, and a roll of black- they have MANY other uses too.

Water is your first need, and should be treated accordingly. Have choices, fallbacks, alternatives, and ‘just in case’.

So much to stack. So little time. If I only had one choice to make, I’d probably get two Sawyer Mini filters. Because two is one, and one is none. And five new food safe 5 gallon buckets with lids. Put paper cups and the filters in two of the buckets, keep the others to fill as needed.

Stack it up.

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Tues. June 20, 2023 – toil and trouble

Hot, humid, hot and hot.   Sun supposed to be set on Broil today. So humid yesterday that you sweat through your shorts just standing still.   The sun was so hot, my feet were burning in my black sneakers.

Did my pickups and loaded the truck, and eventually got up here.  Where it was hot and humid.

There are some issues with my equipment order, so I’m only getting the mini-excavator today.   If the part comes in, I get the skid steer tomorrow.   And while communicating all that we discovered that my extra bucket was interpreted as “just send one bucket” so hopefully that is now straightened out.

I still don’t know exactly what I’ll be getting but I’m pretty sure it won’t be what the website showed in pictures.   Oh, it’ll be the same “class” but probably not as nice or new.    I will start practicing and doing what I can with just the excavator, and maybe doing some scoring cuts with the concrete saw in preparation for using the breaker.  Life’s an adventure.

At least most of the concrete breaking is in the shade.

Tree guy might be able to come on next Monday or Tuesday.


I stopped at the store for some food before heading up.   HEB had some canned smoked tuna clearanced for 50c/ can.   They had several flavors so I bought about 30 cans.  Beef was crazy high.   They had bacon in stock though.

Has anyone else noticed an unusual number of ‘out of order’ gas pumps?   Seems like every station has one or more nozzles with bags over them now, and for the last couple of weeks.  It seems to be getting worse as I’m seeing it at more stations, and I’m seeing more nozzles out of service at each station.   No gas? or just can’t keep the pumps running?   Weird though, whatever it is.

Maybe an indication of an issue coming our way.   Might want to increase your storage a bit.   Typical prepper guidance is one full refill of your vehicle, or a week running your gennie.   I think that’s good advice if you have somewhere safe to store it.   And it is now hurricane season for those in the affected areas.

Speaking of, Tulsa got clobbered by weather, not ‘tornadoes’ but crazy strong winds tearing the place up with widespread power outages.   I looked for some news to link, but didn’t see anything national.  I’ve got friends there and it’s really messed up.

BTW, if you can’t or don’t have a gennie, at least get an inverter that you can hook to a car battery.   A 1000w inverter will run your freezer no problem and probably your fridge too.   It’s a bit inefficient to sit in your car for an hour just to use the inverter, but it’s less wasteful than losing a freezer full of meat.  No gas, no mess, and small package that could save your food.    Add a deep cycle battery and a battery charger/maintainer for normal times, and you don’t even need to run your car if the outage is only a day or two.  Just don’t leave the inverter connected when you aren’t running it.

There’s always something you can do to improve your position.   Stack it up.


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