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A HOPEFULLY UNNECESSARY APOLOGY — 43 Comments

  1. Mas and EP – May Good Fortune blow your way by having Dorian stay out to sea and away from the populated coast!

    You know, I still think that Hurricanes should be given female names. A name like “Dorian” just does not carry the punch of a name like “Katrina”. I have known a few Katrina’s during my life and I can swear to the truth of that! 🙂

  2. Mas,
    Of course there is no apology needed, whether the hurricane hits you or not. You are allowed to have a life apart from posting on occasion. However, we certainly are concerned for everyone in the path of this latest demonstration of nature and it’s fury.
    I must echo you in that the weather predictions are ever so much better today than when I was a kid. I live in West Michigan, pretty much right on Lake Michigan. When I was young, my grandmother used to be able to tell the weather better than the tv weatherman, just by observing nature, and things like the way the wind blew the leaves, turning the maple leaves over in a certain way when rain was on it’s way, etc.

    Now, even here on Lake Michigan, which really can mess up a weatherman’s predictions, the meteorologists tend to be fairly close on their predictions. From at least 2 days out, which is something, when you have a 70 mile lake to cross with a storm. That can change things like crazy, turning a mild summer rain into a huge thunderstorm with hail and damaging winds in half a day. But they do pretty good, and for the huge storms, they have undoubtedly saved many lives in the past 10 years just due to how much warning they have been able to give.

    So I pray for you and yours, along with the rest of those affected by the storm, that you will stay safe, and that bad people will stay away. And thank you for all you continue to do, both of you, for the gun community. It will pay lasting dividends.

  3. Ya’ll hang in there. My first summer in L.O. we had four hurricanes pass over us. A few days without power but everybody came together and helped those in need. I had a friend from Cocoa Beach stay with me for a week because they got hit hard in that part of the state. Sounds like your well prepared. Praying Dorian takes a wide right turn.
    You and the Gang take good care. Your in my thoughts and prayers….

  4. Hopefully all will be well and the storms shall pass with as little damages/loss as is possible. I will be keeping all affected areas in my prayers!

    Personally, fortunately not in such dangers where I reside. As per posts, once again I find myself with plenty of reading to catch up on around here.

    Thank You and best of fortune

  5. Can I pick everyone’s brain here?

    I’m not a prepper. I don’t own a cabin in the Alaskan outback, stocked with a year’s worth of MREs, guns buried in the woods, and homemade Claymore mines protecting the boundaries of my property. Although I believe that we need to watch for a totalitarian government taking control in the US, I think we have enough checks and balances, and freedoms to make that highly unlikely in the near future.

    What I worry about is civil unrest, a natural disaster, a terrorist incident, or some political incident that causes the thin veneer of civilization to dissolve. The simple disruption of the diesel fuel supply will disrupt grocery stores, heating products, gasoline, and anything being sold to keep us alive.

    What I am is a boy scout. I believe in being prepared. Having said that, I’ve had no military training whatsoever. I’ve taken gun classes with folks like you, but I’ve never been through boot camp or any advanced military training.

    I’m not trying to be a Soldier of Fortune type. I’m not a Walter Mitty wanna be. I’m not trying to play Navy Seal. I just would like to get some understanding that if civilization breaks down for a period of time, I can keep myself, my family, my property and my animals safe until things calm down.

    If you were in my shoes, what would you read to learn how to keep my world safe? How to move in public if there is no more law and order? How to keep my house from being a target. Where to go? What to do?

    Is there anything good I can read? Any videos that might help? Any “real” teachers who teach good stuff instead of fantasy Army games?

    Any advice would be appreciated.

      • If anyone here listens to audiobooks, and has adequate power for their MP3 player or phone or whatever to make it through the storm, I would be delighted to offer free downloads of any of the 42 titles I’ve done for Audible.com. Search Audible for my name, and if any of the books look interesting to you, drop me an email at dad@pratt-hobbies.com and I’ll send you a promo code for a free download. A friendly voice talking about something that has nothing to do with weather might be a pleasant diversion.

      • There are numerous no-charge on-line ‘Prepper’ web pages that have suggestions for any level of preparation that you feel necessary, and how to judge what is ‘necessary’. Your situation will likely be different than your neighbors, and your desires (and your wallet) will dictate how much preparation you feel is adequate. I always keep at least a week’s worth of food and water (including for our dogs), propane bottles (my generator is dual fuel and propane doesn’t go bad like gasoline), and other necessary items. I won’t discuss weapons other than to say that I do have some.

      • Look around your local area and see if there’s a prepper group. Visit.

        If they’re talking about the snake-eater stuff, look elsewhere.

        If they have programs about preparing for power outages, storing food on a budget, working with neighbors, food preservation and such, stick around and see what you can learn.

        Check out your local community education program and see what they offer.

        See if your law enforcement agencies offer a citizen academy to learn about how they operate. (Not how to be a cop, but to know what they do.)

        If you live in Texas check out the county extension agent. They’ll have useful programs as well.

        (I’m also a former boy scout. Be Prepared.)

    • Chris Barlow,

      Thankfully there are many wonderful resources on YouTube.com for preppers. Of course, you should get books, because they don’t require electricity or batteries. By browsing, you will find many books. I will just mention one;

      Survivalist Family: Prepared Americans for a Strong America
      by Joe Fox of Viking Preparedness

      Here are some preppers who teach great stuff on YouTube.com

      Viking Preparedness
      Canadian Prepper
      The Prepared Mind
      The Patriot Nurse

      There are many others. I have really enjoyed learning about prepping. So far, I only had to use what I’ve learned for Superstorm Sandy in 2012. I live in a small town of middle class and upper-middle class families. Gasoline was in short supply, and the police HAD to have two officers keep the peace at the only open gas stations. In my county, there were reports of generators being stolen. So, you are right, civilization is a thin veneer. Don’t even think about being a “lone wolf.” You will need community to survive, so surround yourself with good people.

      I would suggest you begin to prep by gathering two weeks worth of clean water and food. You can get as serious about prepping as your desire and budget allow, or you can simply be moderate about it. The Boy Scout motto is great, “Be Prepared.”

      I’ve been preparing for various disasters for 10 years, but life simply continues as it has for generations. It is great to be wrong about impending disasters, but it is still a good idea to be prepared for them. Natural disasters happen everywhere, eventually.

    • Chris Barlow,

      Here is another book, more in line with what you were asking about, which is staying safe when civilization breaks down.

      Soldier of Fortune Guide to Surviving the Apocalypse: The Ultimate Guide to Protecting Your Family Against Societal Collapse

    • Chris, you’ve taken the first step. You have identified that things could be better in your life. You’re asking smart questions and deserve considerate and caring answers. Before you panic and spend 1 penny on any books, equipment tools and such, I recommend you and anyone else in your family decision making tree / spouse, significant other, partner, etc sit down and discuss both your and their concerns with things. Then begin designing your life to make the most of things. to quote a friend: “If times get tough or even if they don’t”. I would recommend listening to Jack Spirko on The Survival Podcast. It is NOT, repeat NOT about doomsday prepping. It is about lifestyle design to help people make smart decisions regarding a careful evaluation of the most likely and problematic events that happen in peoples lives.
      While an attack from North Korea would be a really bad thing, it is much more likely that someone in your family will have job loss or injury that disrupts your lives. Assess and plan for the most likely problems and your “preps” for that will help take care of the rest.
      Take care & good luck. Tell them Hogeye sent you.

    • Chris Barlow,

      Another book;

      Retreat Security and Small Unit Tactics
      by David Kobler and Mark Goodwin

      One of the authors is also known as “SouthernPrepper1” on YouTube.com

  6. And Mas, stay safe. This storm looks nasty because it’s not moving through areas. It’s been battering the Bahamas for days. That nation appears to be wiped out.

    • Here’s your official forecast from the US Government, what could go wrong, Comey wasn’t involved:

      onight
      A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly before 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 75. Northeast wind 6 to 8 mph.
      Wednesday
      A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 9am. Partly sunny, with a high near 88. Breezy, with a north wind 9 to 17 mph.
      Wednesday Night
      A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms before 9pm. Mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming mostly clear, with a low around 74. West wind 6 to 10 mph.
      Thursday
      Sunny and hot, with a high near 95. West wind 6 to 10 mph

  7. Stay safe Mas, the evil one will protect you. The wife and i are riding it out down wind of you in lake county. Food water, a gin or 2 with a little extra ammo

      • @ Don P – Maybe gin is not so far off-base?

        Jeff Cooper once based a short story upon an incident that happened in Old German East Africa. A small, isolated garrison was in danger of being overrun by natives. In this story, a German Sargent makes the following comment:

        “With enough biltong, bullets and beer; a man has nothing to fear!”

        Biltong, by the way, is the African word for jerky.

        I would guess that this statement could apply to natural disasters as well as native uprisings! 🙂

  8. Please do stay safe. You guys are too valuable to lose. Personally, I’ll stick with the frozen North. It’s true, we have three seasons: Winter, July and August. But we don’t have fire ants, humidity that feels like breathing through wet towels, and hurricanes, which one of my fellow Northerners once referred to as “six hour slum clearance.”

  9. My first Hurricane was Dora in 1964 right down the street from you in Jacksonville. Yes forecasting has greatly improved over the years but I still take predictions more than a day out with enough salt to make a cardiologist blanch. My go to for the last few years has been Rob Light at Crown Weather Services. For example he nailed the Houston flooding 3-4 days out. A subscription to his site and email notifications is money very well spent.

  10. Chris, two sources of information from people who have been through it is Ferfal who went through the Argentine 2001 crisis and a guy named Selco who lived through the Balkin War. They blog about day to day life in an environment that was extremely chaotic and dangerous where the only thing on everyone’s mind was surviving. I would suggest you read their material to look for anything that you may have not thought about.

    http://ferfal.blogspot.com

    https://shtfschool.com

  11. As I write this, Mas, it looks like you are fairly safe from Dorian, although his wind field is pretty large. So watch out for soggy ground leading to downed trees and resultant havoc. I am literally taking a break from boarding up our house on a barrier island just north of Wilmington, NC. Since it looks like a bit of a glancing blow to us here (touching wood as I say that!), I’m just boarding up the sliding doors on the front deck facing the ocean and the doors on the ground floor to help guard against water intrusion from storm surge. We’ll see in a few days if my plan survives contact with the enemy, which is supposed to be Cat 2 when it gets here.

    Stay safe, everyone!

  12. Dear Chris Barlow and Others…just go to SurvivalBlog.com. That website gives you everything you need. You can either read the daily articles or browse their writing competition (an event that JWR hosts and offers an array of writings from detailed technical (e.g. well pump design) or more discrete topics like what to carry in your car, what to keep on your person, water supply. Dig around on the site to find back links for old contest articles and you can find pretty much every thing you need. Don’t get overwhelmed. There’s a lot of info, so take what works and then assume you will browse back again as you become more proficient.

    Ironically, today’s article covers home security.

    Good Luck. Squirrel 44

  13. Chris, just remembered. A good start book on the topic you broach. Patriots by John Wesley Rawles. It’s on Kindle. It pretty much covers all of the scenario you discuss with a fictional story. The book has some good lessons on car travel and also on realistic planning for a variety of scenarios. A little dramatic in scenes but with the world as it is, unfortunately, some of the scenes (e.g. Post Katrina) are not unrealistic.

    Stay well. Squirrel 44

  14. Wow, those prospective looters don’t realize how lucky they were that the storm veered off. It isn’t often that I read about looting that makes me laugh.

  15. Mas
    You are inundated by good wishes; I hope you are not bothered by either too much water or too much wind.
    Hunker down .

    You might use the off time to work on your next book.
    Best wishes and a quick prayer.

  16. Chris, you can pretty much start on any of the resources listed above and shared by various folks. But a good place to start is with your family (and yours) relative to vaccines. Make sure you all have an up to date tetanus shot (they are good for 10 years), then confirm (if you were born in certain years) that you do or don’t need a measles (MMR) booster shot, and then get your flu shots for the year starting in September (this month actually)

    Basically, you can pick a month of the year to review your status — and create a record/log book. It’s the best bang (shot) for your buck, so to speak. If you want to the extra mile, you can get the three part series for Hep A/Hep B relative to food safety. The latter might save your life (and save your kidney/liver as well relative to Hep A). The CDC website has a graph table of what’s needed by age or an app on phones. Since vaccines “sell out” as problems happen (e.g. measles outbreaks, new shingles vaccine for ages 50+, or Hep A) it can take a year for you and your family to get through the whole series and be totally up to date.

    And finally, you can’t get all of your shots at the same time, so the process will take a while to get your back log up to snuff.

    Good luck.

  17. Thanks for all of the responses.

    I’m not looking for prepper information, like how to make a fully functional woodstove out of a Dixie cup or how to grow tofu in your basement bunker. I’m looking how to learn defensive military skills to keep me alive if things get so out of hand, that the police and legal system are no longer working.

    I’m hoping that there are other ways other than having to join the Army for training.

    • Chris Barlow,

      I think you are basically talking about what is known as “small unit tactics” in the military. I’m sure the police have procedures for searching houses, and various SWAT activities that may be even more relevant to a civilian’s defense.

      Something else to think about; if the disaster is temporary, then rule-of-law will be restored, and the authorities will try to solve any murders or crimes that happened during the disaster, if they can. So, you need to know the laws concerning self-defense. If the disaster lasts a long time (I don’t know what qualifies as “a long time”) and you believe that rule-of-law will not be restored soon, you are in the-end-of-the-world-as-we-know-it, and you won’t have to worry about being dragged into court for anything you do or do not do. You will still have to answer to your conscience and a higher power, if you believe in one.

      • Thanks. Ordered up some books, with the most interest in how to stay invisible, and avoid any confrontation.

        The best lesson I learned from Mas, was that it was far cheaper and less hassle to avoid having to shoot anyone than to ever draw the gun.

        It’s why I’m inside after 10 PM, don’t get into arguments with anyone, keep my mouth shut, and stay out of problematic places.

      • Chris,

        Employing “the gray man” concept is a very wise decision. Also, to stay out of harm’s way, preppers have said to make your home and yard a mess. That is, you want to look unattractive to looters. Make your house look like it has already been looted. Noisy generators, lights on, especially at night, and cooking smells from a fire all indicate a prepper who was wise enough to prepare. In other words, a target for looters.

        If I had made wiser career decisions I may have had a bunker built beneath my house. The house could look looted and trashed, and looters would not suspect I was comfortable in my subterranean hideout. People with lots of money purchase condos in refurbished missile silos. They have five year’s worth of food, comfortable quarters, a team of security people to protect the silo, and a doctor or two.

  18. Mas, please give a shout as soon as you’re able. A Facebook rumor has us concerned.

    Be safe!

    Tim & Mona
    Columbia MO

  19. Another good book is Guns and Self Defense by Robert and Sim Waters. It’s a collection of 23 stories about real cases of successful defense by ordinary people.