Wednesday, April 29, 2009

112th Post

Well, it's the 112th post here at the Update. It's kind a surprising to have posted that much, but 'tis true.

Clare and I are presently in midst of Season 1 of 24, more than half way through. It is an excellent show--everything I was hoping it would be. Now I can talk shop with other fellow 24 junkies, while I tote around my Jack Bauer bag, courtesy of my loving wife for my birthday from

I did find, however, an even cooler albeit less civilian-looking messenger bag from Tickbite Tactical. Yes, you read that right, Tickbite Tactical, and they have an awesome bag. Check out their "Heavy Duty Messenger Bag" to see what I mean.

This past weekend Clare and I mosied on up the trail alongside Crabtree Falls here in Virginia. It's a two-mile hike with recurring switchbacks to bring you farther up the mountain. The hike was easier than handling the 30 lb. fuss on my back, who clamored for the jeep and everything else the whole way up. Joking aside, given my present lack of being in excellent physical shape--I made it to the upper falls without issue.

Which brings me to the theme of my post. Slow and steady wins the race, at least where I am often concerned. I thought I was dogging it, truly, but I made the decision from the outset not to rush but to take my time. To my surprise we made it up faster than expected while soaking in the overlooks. Crabtree falls is one of the best falls in Virginia, possibly the best depending on what you're looking for. White Oak Canyon's lower falls for me, however, take the cake.

BTW, in case you are wondering, the new pic on the blog is of Elkala Falls in WV.

So we've been really good about making the most of this Spring and getting in some hikes.

I am considering joining a local gym that is on my way out of town in the mornings. I figured if I could get in there 3-4 a week before work--I am a morning person--I could get a lot more buff, lose the gut, and have and even better excuse to shave the head. The long and short of it is they have a pool and I love to swim.

So now that I am not training in the dojo like the fiend I once was, it's all up to me to continue my aikido practice. Thus far, this has consisted of stretching, jo and ken suburi at home and a once a week session with the ninja on the other side of town. However, the arena of physical conditioning is lacking, and the 2.5 hours in the car each way don't help.

So that is the scoop. That and I want another Glock, but what else is new? In case you are wondering, it will be the Glock 31, chambered in 357 Sig. Virtually all the joy of the 357 Magnum chambered in a 15 rd. semi-auto pistol from Gaston Glock. That sounds really damn good to me.

Peace out yos. I hope all is well.

Over and Out,


Friday, April 17, 2009

The BOL & More

Wow. It' hard to believe it's been almost a year since we moved in, but in a week it shall be so.
I am so grateful to be living out here. It was a struggle to find a home, particularly one we could afford, but it I am always amazed how this place has worked out. Above is a pic taken from this evening after the sun had set of the mountains. Combine that with a delectable breeze and a chorus of tree frogs and that makes for a most serene setting.
Things here at the BOL have come along splendidly over the past year. The grass is mowed. New landscaping is in. Trash has been cleared out. We have 2/3 of a really cool bathroom and so on. Time has flown. It is just a joy to be here and have this opportunity to live in Eden after the fall. That is certainly Virginia to me. Eden after the fall.
In like news earlier this week I made it back out to the Spring. That is the Jeep, the Glock, and I. The water is remarkable and I felt in tune with the earth and its gifts obtaining it myself out of the mountain. If only the quasi-hoopty handn't shown up and started a line of cars, it would have been a complete back to nature experience. Being up in the hills, alone, I was happy to be open carrying the Glock, especially when a caprice with tinted windows rolled in. Not what I was expecting. I wasn't rushed or messed with. Gee, I wonder why?
I obtained my CHP on Weds. of Holy Week! This means I can lawfully carry a pistol concealed in the state of VA. It's great to have the option now to conceal, my preferred method of carry. I alternate from open to concealed to open, depending where I am. Up in the hills, gathering water for the homestead, I'll carry openly, thank you very much. I prefer concealed carry in highly trafficked areas, however.
I have decided to answer any question about why I carry using the PC terminology of the current administration: Let' just say it's my "Outside the Waistband Contingency Plan," if you know what I mean.
That being said, I purchased a new holster for concealed and open carry. It's the Phantom holster for Glock and Tactical Light by Raven Concealment Systems. While I don't have a tactical light for the gun yet, that's ok. I have 40 days to get one, as the company is that backed up in producing their holsters, which are made to order. I am looking forward to the upgrade.
Clare and I are preparing to embark on a "24" watching Bonanza after seeing the first several episodes of the 1st season. Ironically, I was reinspired to check out "24' by purchasing a recreation of the Jack Bauer messenger bag from after reading a review about rethinking the Bug-Out Bag. Instead of using a "break in case of emergency" type bag, have a bag with gear that you use or need every day. Clearly, you won't need everything you pack in the bag all the time, but it's better to try and carry gear you will actually use regularly or quasi-regularly. This isn't to bash the BOB. I still have mine. It will just be set up differently.
Anyway, a new bag is on the way as I organize my life to make it "tacticool."
Ciao people. Have a great weekend!
Over and Out,

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Ah, good old Epicetus. As if to emphasize my point from the previous post, I found this gem from Roman times:

"What ought one to say then as each hardship comes? I was practicing for this, I was training for this?- - Epictitus"


Peace Out Yo's.



As I write, I take note that I am up earlier than most, at 4AM. Imagine that you are among the first people that day to see the world around you melting down in the news. Whatever the cause or reason, the S is HTF. You have only a couple of hours of waking time before others take notice and storm Wal-Mart and everywhere else to get their preparations.

The question: but what are you going to do?

A lot of ink has been spilled on this topic, and I suspect that will only continue. Are you prepared? Are you ready?

I go through phases of getting prepared and then worrying about the day-to-day things that are actually within my control and sphere of influence. Prepping is mentally exhausting if you take it too seriously, so I do what I can do and try not to worry about it. But I also only try to buy things that will last and that I will want to have in case the SHTF.

We take our modern way of life for granted, and build our personal foundations around those conveniences. If it were all to suddenly disappear, or disappear in part, that's serious SHTF.

Key Concerns include:
  1. Where you live
  2. Safety & Personal Protection
  3. Water
  4. Weather/Heating/Cooling
  5. Food
  6. Energy
  7. Sewage
  8. All the shit you are going to need, but can't get because the world is in chaos.

I hope the wheels are turning out there.

Some things I personally recommend. They can't hurt you, but you will happy you have them if the SHTF:

1.) Pistol, shotgun, rifle (in that order) and ammo (good luck finding it)
2.) Concealed carry permit
3.) Get home bag, especially if you commute
4.) Medic Bag for the house (depending on where you live, ambulances can take time)
5.) Fireproof container for important documents
6.) Self-Defense training if you have none
7.) Food and Water for at least 2 weeks for everyone in a household
8.) A garden (if possible and realistic)
9.) Chickens (ditto)
10.) Extra maintenance supplies for your house and cars: lightbulbs, filters for water and HVAC, oil and oil filters, etc.

This list isn't gospel or anything, but it makes sense to me. I've only had to bug out once in my entire life, and here's what I wish I would have had at the time:

1.) More money
2.) More organization
3.) A pistol

That being said, the most important thing on that list long term is organization. If you have personal organization, you can get money and a gun. But in a crisis, whether it be local or global, familial or societal, personal organization is, IMHO, the most important aspect your preparations, bar none.

If you are not mentally or emotionally prepared for a crisis in your life, if--when--a crisis hits, it's going to slam you to the mat, real hard and real fast. You won't know what hit you, and the other stuff won't matter if you aren't mentally and emotionally prepped. You'll be in la-la land or worse. You can't prepare for everything, but I recommend you try. You don't want to be on the floor if you can avoid it.

Experience is the greatest teacher, but unfortunately, it's because you take the test first and study afterwards. You try to reverse that process if you are smart.

The greatest service you can do for yourself and your loved ones is to make sure you have your own personal shit together. People who have their shit together, or seem to, are inspiring. They are also the people you want to turn to in a crisis, people you want on your side. But if you are not on your own side, may God help you and I mean it.

BTW, I recommend checking out for more information on how SHTF occurred in Argentina in 2001 and what it's like living down there in the aftermath. I've read it in its entirety and his thoughts are worth checking out in full. Awesome blog and dude.

This became a very long post. Unintentional, but that's what happens when discussing the things I like.

Peace out, Yo's.


Saturday, April 04, 2009

Open Door Policy

Friday morning I woke up early, as usual. I waltzed--well, maybe more like clambered--into the kitchen to start some tea, when I noticed immediately that the door to my shed was swung wide open. It's never left like that. Ever. If it is, it's very unusual for me to forget or not to notice when I come home.

Ironically, I wasn't worried. That was the gut check. Still, it wouldn't be the first time a stow-away or thief had invaded an outbuilding where I lived. The thing is, the door knob has a ghetto rope on it that would prevent the door from just swinging up open. The way it's set up, the rope has to be removed by hand. So either Clare or I forgot to shut the door at one point, or someone else did.

As I got dressed, I asked Clare if she had gone to the shed the day before, and she said no. So I grabbed my Glock, loaded and cocked it, and went out there to see WTF is up.

I cleared the chicken coup then the shed. Nobody home. Nothing seemed unusual or out of place. I shut the door and that was that.

I know there are some out there who would say that if you even think your home or property has been invaded, you should call the police and not try to handle it yourself. If there is clear evidence of a break in, such as a shattered glass or a breached door, ok, no objection. But I am not going to call the cops for a shed with a door I may have left open. Had someone been in the shed, they would have been questioned and then, depending on the vagrant, shooed away or held at gun point while I call 9-1-1 on my cell. Or, if they had been violent, they would be capped. No questions asked.

Contrary to popular belief, I am not a trigger-happy moe-foe. Simply put, the worst can happen.
If you have a gun in your hands or at your side, the odds, generally speaking, are greatly increased in your favor. You have more options. You don't have to play dead to dial 9-1-1 like the secretary did this week in Binghamton, New York, while a crazed shooter, a Cho-wannabe, kills 14 innocent people because his life took a turn for the worse. No, you keep your SA, draw and shoot the mother. That's what you do.

Do not be a sheep. Thinking anything can't or won't happen doesn't make it so. If you haven't yet purchased a firearm or two to protect you and your family. Ask yourself, what are you waiting for?

Best to you all. Over and Out.


Thursday, April 02, 2009


AR parts kit, ordered.