Monday, June 4, 2018

A day off. New magazines. A good Harry Turtledove series. Pulvex. Kymber is alive, and well, and living in Canada!

 update: I wanted to stick a wire note on here to pass the word that Kymber still lives!  She and J have a great blog, but they haven't been posting for awhile. People were concerned , so it's good to know they are ok.  She left a brief comment on another post to let me know they are well , and will be posting again. That's very good news.

Today is Monday, and after this past weekend  we are taking a break up here.  I had planned on Sunday, at least, being a quiet one but we ended up doing a lot of traveling to different towns. We had a fairly extensive list of things we needed to buy, and we couldn't fill it in our town.  We ended up going to two other states as well as Georgia and it took the whole weekend.  Impromptu things like that do happen up here.

I found another Turtledove series I liked.  It's a three volume story of a "hot war" between the Soviet Union and the United States in 1950.  Starts out in Korea, but this time Truman gives MacArthur the OK to use atomic bombs against the Red Chinese.

That's an interesting scenario, because in 1950, there were no nuclear missile armed subs. There weren't even any ICBM's.  The only way to deliver an atomic bomb was by strategic bomber, and both the USSR and the USA used the same bomber.

In 1945,  several of our B-29's were damaged over Japan, and landed in Soviet territory.  The Russians kept the bombers, back engineered the type, and in 1950 that was their sole strategic bomber.  In 1950 , both types were obsolete but neither had yet been replaced in US or Soviet service.

Turtledove's three books in the Hot War series are as follows. I've read the first two and really enjoyed them. The third is still on order through the library.

I also started his "Atlantis" series but gave up on it.  I got through the first of five books, and half of the second, but it just didn't interest me.  The premise of this series is that a big land mass exists between North America and Europe. It's discovered by Basque fishermen during the War of the Roses in England, and the books describe it's settlement and development over about 500 years. Just not a period of history I'm interested in. It wasn't that they weren't good,  just not my cup of tea.

Some new magazines came out:

This is the Fall, 2018 issue of "Gear Guide" published by the same folks who do American Survival Guide.  Seems a bit early, but it's a good issue.  This time around, there are more categories and they are better organized. The editors have also made an effort to include items that mere mortals can afford, as opposed to the past policy of only discussing high priced gear beyond the means of most.

That didn't keep them from putting in a plug for a bug out vehicle that costs 1.5 million dollars. I sure wanted one but when I got to the price I figured it might be out of my reach.  Still, there's lots of good gear in here, especially if you ever go to the woods, or anywhere in the boondocks.

The new Off Grid is out in the digital version, which probably means it's on the news stands now and I just haven't seen it.  Survival and gun magazines have very suddenly fallen from favor here in our county, and have been largely replaced on the racks in town by things like "Southern Living" and "June Bride" magazine.  I am not sure why that is, but I suspect a number of our Half Way Backs took umbrage at nasty gun magazines being on sale and bitched about it. Of course, we all know that anyone who reads a survivalist magazine is a Ted Kaczynski wanabe, so we can't have those on display either. I talked to managers at both stores with magazine racks. Neither of them are from here, and neither of them would answer my questions.

Incidentally, if you like Cody Lundin, who has been largely off the sky line since he left "Dual Survival", you will want to get this latest edition. There's an article in there on him. I like the guy, and I have both his books. I enjoyed his writing style and felt like there was some good information in there.

In the " Good Show, Pal" category:
Fox News 3 June 2018

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two would-be robbers died after a Tennessee homeowner pulled out his AK-47 and shot them while inside his home.

The unidentified homeowner told WMC that he came to his Memphis home Friday evening and found the men inside.

“I see my house being ransacked and the dog was still going hysterical in the cage,” he said. “When he saw me he notified the other individual that was with him, ‘hey, they are here.'”

When the duo pulled out their guns, he was able to grab his AK-47 out of the hall closet and fatally shoot the intruders.

“I don’t know what’s going on but I know I’m going to defend my life to the best of my ability,” he said.

The robbers have been identified as 17-year-old Demond Robinson and 28-year-old Azell Witherspoon.

The man has since released surveillance video of the incident to police to confirm his story that the shootings were in self-defense.

Not a lot else to tell. The weather has been a lot better, up into the high eighties and humid, but survivable. Everything is going well with us up on the mountain.  I have two doctor appointments this week, but they are just the standard  thing where you go in and get your blood work on the first one, then you go back on the second one and the doctor harasses you about your blood pressure, blood sugar, et al.  Routine.

I've been using Pulvex Veterinary Ointment  on Tuggy's tail. She got some kind of infection, and had a big spot on her tail that was all swollen. She'd been rubbing it on trees to "scratch" the itch, and it was pretty nasty.  I used Pulvex on her, and it's healing right up.  That's good stuff.  It doesn't cost much, keeps forever, and you can get it on line or from your farmer's depot if you have one. It's great for cuts and scraps on people, as I can attest from my own experience.  Handy to have in your medical supplies.

No joy on getting my CB base unit back up.  I haven't had a lot of time to work on it, and even when I do get it on the air again, I'll just wind up listening to SSB transmissions from guys using illegal power inverters because nobody local is still using CB.



  1. I see I'll have to check out more Harry Turtledove. Thanks for the reviews.

    Always like Cody,"the bush hippy." I could do without the barefoot thing. It does force you to slow down and really observe your surroundings. One thing that stuck with me is how he'd often eat pretty low on the food chain. No sense in trying to kill an alligator in hand to hand combat and potentially getting hurt. Too many of these survival guys act like there will always be a top notch hospital just a helicopter ride away.

    Weather went from the 80s to the 40s. Did not even reach 50 today. We did get that much needed rain. The woodstove is going so it was a good time to do paperwork. (I burn a lot of it, sorta the redneck shredder)

    1. I enjoyed the "Hot War" series, at least, the first two volumes. Still waiting for the third, but expect it to be good. Never even heard of the guy until I accidentally came across a whole row of his books on a back shelf in the library. Lots of other people have read his books though, so I guess I was just behind the times.

      I like Lundin. He and Les Stroud always struck me as down to earth and not fake, unlike a lot of people who make money off the concept. He had a tough life and did some time for selling drugs, but he put it behind him and has done well since then. No wonder he couldn't put up with the B.S. the tv show producers wanted him to do.

      Hard to believe it's cold up there. We have full on summer here now, humid and days in the high eighties to low nineties range.

      I spent most of this morning doing paperwork as well. I wish I could further simplify life but it just doesn't seem to want to work out that way.

  2. There's a book series you might find interesting. Its by SM Stirling, and the first book is called "Island In The Sea Of Time". The premise is that the entire island of Nantucket is transported back in time to the Bronze Age. The only technology remaining is what was on the island when they were displaced. Stuck a few thousands years in the past, they have to deal with isolation, no resupply, hostile natives, and the usual sundry social issues. I thought it to be a rather entertaining series. If you'd like, I'll send you the first book. You might like it.

    1. The Bronze Age is a favorite of mine, Mycenaeans, Trojans, Hittites, Assyrians, Egyptians, and many more. Sounds like something I need to read, for sure. Let me check the library to see if I can get the books through them, and if not I'll take you up on your kind offer.

  3. thanks for kymber and jaime news. relieved to hear they are well.

    1. Sometimes, when people stop posting, they are dead. Like Sci Fi Chick. So you kind of worry.

  4. Harry thanks for letting everyone know that we are back up and running. i really appreciate it as your blog is a hub of sorts for others. thanks so much!

    sending love. your friend,

    1. Lots of people asked me if I had heard from you and J in the last month or so. They like your blog, and you know how it is, when people go "EMCON" you always suspect the worst, like somebody got cancer or something...

      Sure good to hear from you again.

  5. Hi Harry :) Thanks for the recommendation for Pulvex, I'd never heard of that. I think it would be good to have at home considering all of the critters. One of our cats, Oscar, has itchy ears. He's on prednisone but I hate giving that to him. Might take a look for this product if I can find it in Canada.

    That article you posted, good for Mr. AK-47. All best are off once you are on my property.

    It's been rainy here still, but everything is really bursting out and it's lovely to see. I'm ready for more sun and humidity though, minus the black flies, which is a pipe dream lol!

    I saw K&J's update on their blog which was nice. I heard from her in the winter. They're just busy living their happy lives I guess! :)

    1. I have been using Pulvex for a long time. I use it on myself, if I get a cut or scrape. It's a great topical antibiotic, and it doesn't burn.

      There was a news video on Fox but I couldn't find it where it would play on blogger. The guy who came home and was attacked by the two men plundering his house said " This is Memphis. You gonna need a gun." I thought that was pretty succinct and pretty funny!

      Nice weather here, if a little hot. Humidity is down today, and it's clear. Maybe we can all have less weather related issues to put up with for a while.

      I was glad to hear Kymber and J. were ok. Sometimes, you just get so much going on, you can't drag yourself down to the computer at night to post because you are just too tired. I sure understand how that works...

    2. rain,
      i think it was kymber and i think she wrote about black flies.
      vaseline on a blue plastic cup, put on your head like a hat and tie on with elastic. flies stick to it and leave the wearer alone. check her site first to make sure i remember aright.

  6. Thanks for the report on the new Turtledove series. I just put the 1st one on order

    1. I like these latest books. Turtledov uses some pretty foul language in the "Hot War" series, but since much of it deals with military life, I guess he had to. I don't know how things are now, but in the 1870's and 1980's, I spent a lot of time either in the field with Marines, or at sea with the Navy. There's some rough language used there. I knew one guy, and I'm not making this up, who came home from his first deployment and was having a big celebratory dinner with his extended family. They were all so proud of him for getting assigned to DLGN 25, the USS Banbridge, which was the first nuclear powered Guided Missle Frigate.

      He was basking in all the attention, and then said casually to his mom "please pass the F****g butter!" It just slipped out. It was one of those things where you can hear the crickets chirping! What was really funny was the guy was one of the most straight laced fellows I ever knew!

    2. I can attest to how it was as an NCO from '75 to '95, "rough language" could be the turm. Not sure how it was in the 1870's though.

    3. Whoops. I'm old, but I ain't that old! I meant "1970's and 1980's". Back then, bad language was pretty common and was just considered "salty." An "Old Salt" was a guy who had been in a long time and knew the ropes. We wore plain green "utility" uniforms, what the army called "fatigues", and as they were washed many , many times they faded out to a soft light olive color. So everybody who had new , unfaded uniforms looked like a "boot", a new comer. The "Old Salts" all had deeply faded uniforms. The scuttlebutt was that they bought new uniforms and then lowered them over the side of the side of the ship when it was at anchor, so the sea water would help fade the "new" out of them. I never saw anybody doing this, but I don't doubt it was true at least to some extent.

      Later, the Marine Corps phased in a mottled camo uniform, but it was awful. The material ripped out at the knees without provocation, and the uniform was designed not to be starched, so it did not look squared away. The old uniforms were always starched and pressed in garrison or aboard ship, but in the field our field laundries just washed and dried them. You didn't want starch in the field anyway because when you sweated it got on your skin and itched.

      Those were the days, but long past.
      You and I were "in" for an overlapping period there.

  7. Harry,

    I've noticed that survival magazines around here also are a bit more difficult to find on the rack. I attribute that more confidence about the future among the general population - they aren't as anxious about the stability of the country, so they are less interested in the subject and so aren't buy as many magazines, so the stores are downplaying them or ceasing to carry certain titles altogether. Of course, one of the titles that seems to have become scarce is Backwoodsman, which is less of a survival magazine than a general "woodsman on a budget," so maybe I'm wrong.

    The sudden explosion of survivalist magazines on the racks of grocery stores in my very liberal city was one of the reasons why I predicted Trump would win. I figured that if stores were stocking them it was because they were selling, and if they were selling than a large proportion of the population in general was very deeply worried about the future. Trump was the Change Candidate, so that worry benefited him. Fewer magazines selling may actually be a good sign, I think.

    1. G.F. you may well be right there. When everything was in the tank, survival tv shows and magazines were all the rage and they were out there in great profusion. But now, with things looking up, maybe people really are not so anxious and don't feel the need to do any prior planning.

      We still get "Backwoodsman" here, but American Survival Guide, Survivors Edge, Off Grid and most particularly the special editions have just dried up. Gun and survival magazines used to take up three whole shelves at our grocery store, but now only about one and a half. The other one and a half have turned into sports magazines about soccer and football!

      I have been going to the publishers web pages, and if I find something I want that has not shown up in our town, I buy it direct. This is more costly, though, since I always wind up paying cover price plus about $3.00 S&H. I went ahead and subscribed to Off Grid, and Survivors Edge. Already had a subscription to American Survival Guide. Still, the subscriptions don't cover the many special editions, and if the special editions don't show up in town (and they don't, anymore) it would be easy to miss one.

      One thing about it though, I don't go into town as much anymore as I used to since I am not plundering around the magazine racks, and it's 32 miles round trip to town, so with gas up so high, I am saving some money.