Prepping: “Cat Balancing” Part 2

I didn’t mean to sound “preachy” (if I did) in the Saturday part one of this series, but have to say, it’s the way I really feel.  Once you have enough money to buy more than you can ever consume before the worms show up, there’s time to look around and ask:  Have I walked lightly?

That’s a Native American concept that, sure, gets flashed by environmental types, who then get in their cars, or like a certain former vice president, make heart rendering speeches about CO2 and then travel to the next warming conference aboard a corporate jet.  Somehow, it’s seems disingenuous and dishonest.

Yes, we ALL need to prep.  Not as a further “exercise in spending” however.  In living differently.  Somehow, though, this critical message about real prepping gets lost in the 15% off sales and the “Almost Gone…get them while you can” mass marketing craziness.

I was deadly serious when “I said if you think you’re a prepper and you don’t understand Allan Savoys work on management of livestock, you might never make it past year two of a Meltdown.”   On the Mandatory Reading list: Holistic Management, Third Edition: A Commonsense Revolution to Restore Our Environment.  We will discuss his “Greening the Desert: Holistic Management in the Era of Climate Change (Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures Book 35) in a future Peoplenomics report.

Fact is, you can already see the emergence of the huge need for holistic economics.  But, as Savory points out early on in his book, humans are tool makers and users.  And that doesn’t always work to our benefit.  Starting with chemical farming and livestocking and continuing on through our waste of energy in all forms.

Bitcoin mining, for example, is by this measure a “greedstercise” that should have been banned and shunned by all thinking, environmentally aware people.  Yet look at the energy wastes.  AYSM?  For hash codes pretending to be “money?”  CO2 for hash codes?  How freaking dumb, right?

Governments are setting ALL of us up for a massive, global show-down over “How we think and do”  with the Christian-Judaeo West trusting that capitalism will monetize a “way” that will work.  With equal certainty, the Chinese are doing down the C.H. Douglas route of “Social Credits” which is nothing more than the “lazy socialist” way of replacing monetization with forced labor.  Of course, it’s sold as as “social” and, since that is an emotional buzz word, people are bowing down to it – as they have before all the wrong-headed ways to fix the climate.

Savory’s got an actual working plan – which will reduce CO2 shedding by humans by 30 percent. Huge, right?  More than anything in the political sphere.  Yet, as we see it, he’s got a major marketing problem because, well, where’s the money is his approach?

Oh, sure, saves the planet, ends warming, doesn’t cost very much, and as a bonus it passes on the fine art of de-monetized thinking.  Can’t have that now, can we?

SOMEONE HAS TO  GET RICH.  ONE OF THE RULERS!

Which has what to do with cats, exactly?

Just coming to that.  The other day I was looking at a collection of barrels that we have gathered over the years…and I’ve been trying to figure out how to reuse, re-purpose, or recycle them.  Shouldn’t be too tough, you’d think.

There are a million things a creative person can do with an old barrel.  They’re all over the place in East Texas.  I bought some recently up in Tyler, Texas for $3-bucks each in very good condition.

Most have had dangerous chemicals, so they’re no good for food growing.  Cutting down to planter-size doesn’t seem smart.  The red and blue ones were used for corrosion inhibitors and the gray $3-buck specials contained a solvent used in PCB fabbing.

A great prepping exercise is to figure out how many ways you can use an old barrel.  In no time, you can come up with ideas likee…

  • A dozen variations on stoves and heating devices.
  • Animal shelters
  • Tractor weights  (yes, we do need to add weight to a tractor now and then))
  • Chairs…
  • And artwork like this fence decoration for my younger sitser, cut from a barrel top:

Side-story:  That metal sculpture, if you look closely, is the family last name and a Ying-Yang design, cut out while my consigliere was visting.  I pulled the “Tom Sawyer” sell on him:  “Huck, think you are man enough to handle a plasma cutter?

Being an attorney, he instantly fell for it. In no time, he was cutting like crazy while I supervised.  I like supervision.

I told him he was a natural at it, but he’d need some more practice.  “Tilt you torch a bit more,” I offered…continuing on in my supervisory role.

A carrot and stick sell…and works perfectly.]

Still, we have more barrels than artwork to cut…and more than enough for two or three “oil drum stoves” (we keep a kit or two plus barrels on hand).

Then it hit me!  Bolt of lightning out of the blue, it was.  I could take a barrel – one of the old rusty ones- and slice it open and lay it down in a field and give Alberto Culvert (a wild cat so-named because he’s a wild black cat that has been living in the driveway culvert for more than a year).  This would be a much better place to live.

And hour of playtime with grinder, the plasma torch, then the wire welder and it was done.  Careful set on a foundation of insulated work pads by Elaine and me.  Elaine donated two of those 20-inch square 3/8ths inch foam pads people use to soften shop floors.

Alberto took to it in no time… perhaps because Elaine put his first meal inside.  Nose leading, he was determined (as all feral forest cats are) to get a free meal even if there might be some risk involved.

The barrel ends are pock-marked and partly rusted through.  But, way we figure it, it’s better than living in a culvert when the UPS truck comes by.  Or I’m wheeling the trash out…Much quieter digs.

Fun?  You bet…sure!  But it goes deeper.  It goes to cat-balancing.

We’ve been noticing the neighbors around here and the HUGE number of wild cats about.  Close as we can figure it, what has been keeping the local rodent population down has been two things.  First, the farm across the road from us is no longer producing rabbits.  Rodents aren’t really fond of rabbit poo, but you’d be amazed at what they will eat when motivated.

But the second factor has been the increase in feral cats.

Remember, a few years back, we paid the Lexus emporium $500 to replace a wiring harness in Elaine’s car because in the dead of winter, that plastic insulation on Toyota wiring harnesses – made from a soy-based plastic – must taste like something edible.  (Lexus also cleaned the mouse nest in the fresh-air ducting).  Prime house cat Zeus was put on probation.

To say there is an optimal “environment to cats ratio” doesn’t misstate the things.  Our point this weekend is that if the crap ever hits the fan, you’ll need to be quick in assessing such real-time balancing decisions.

Do you need a dog?  What will he eat?  Will he be of service to you?  Can he fend for himself when the food runs out?

Cats eat something like over 1,000 different types of insects, plus they keep down rodents (and the tree rats that city-slickers call squirrels and feed). We figure with one cat house-side (Zeus) and t’other outdoors (Alberto) up around the garden, we should be about fixed.

Some of our neighbors up the road feed a dozen, or so, wild cats every evening.  No sign of rodents and I don’t know when they last saw a snake.

Sunflowers will go in next spring here.  They will drop seeds next summer.  The seeds will bring birds.  The birds will bring cats and snakes…but with enough cats  to balance… you following this?

We’ve seen cats here take on even corals snake (we haven’t seen any for a couple of years, though).  Cats cleaned ’em out.

Environmentalism shouldn’t be a Facebook or TV fund-raiser.  But, this is America and monetization rules.  People seem to like living detached from the Real World.

Which is why folks like us in the Outback are different:  We’ve lived on the water and now in the Outback.  From here, the insanity of modern monetizations is abundantly clear.  Yet addictive at the same time.

Somehow, it’s comforting to think about cat-balancing and reading Savory when the world seems at every second to be at the crossroads between utter collapse or another year of muddle-through.

We know it. Cats know it.  Nature provides for a cat balance… a sunflower balance…watering balance….a bird balance….

You can play with these levels, but its really a good idea to go camping more and experiment a little bit to see how Nature really works, up close and personal like.

Right now, it’s optional and a return to techno-life will be along tomorrow for most.  But you never know… We live in awe that people put so much emphasis on balancing their portfolios not realizing the bigger problem is in balancing lives.

Write when you get rich,

george@ure.net

45 thoughts on “Prepping: “Cat Balancing” Part 2”

  1. Playing with ecosystems is a can (barrel) of worms George. The theme of cat balancing translates differently per biome and political region.
    Here in the high desert and throughout much of the West it’s cow balancing; the ranchers hate coyotes that cull young calves from the defenseless herd so they enlist gubment helicopter snipers to reduce the coyotes, which causes explosions of the rabbit population. Rabbit tournaments follow (more of an excuse to shoot things than an effective effort at balancing) and the imbalances keep rolling downhill.
    The reintroduction of wolves in Western Montana is a good example of what can happen when we tinker with ‘balancing’ by supporting or protecting an apex predator. These creatures, introduced in Yellowstone in 1995 have thrived and now are off the protected list in neighboring Wyoming after several little publicized incidents where Elk herds were wiped out by wolves who were ‘sport killing’.
    Finding that equilibrium where things balance is only a temporary state. Be grateful you don’t have a neighbor who believes in dog balancing.

  2. I watch shows on house shopping, flipping, rehabing and building. The comparison between tiny house owners and folks who say 2300 sq ft is too small for their family of four is staggering. I live in a large (850 sq ft) one bedroom apartment which is luxurious by tiny house standards. This is great accommodation for me and cat, and I don’t grok why someone would NEED more.

    • I have to agree with George, except I have several tractors and other stuff. I live in 600 square feet of a few thousand square foot house. There’s no point in using(and heating) a bedroom just for me, so it remains available and clean for whenever it’s warranted. Other bedrooms are for other work, such as electronics. The garage is under reconstruction, so tools are everywhere else. I only use the kitchen to make coffee and one simple meal a day. I have an entire other house devoted to a study and storage, along with workshops. Things that make sense with a wife and kids need to be reallocated after they all leave. It’s cheaper to maintain and pay taxes on too much stuff than it is to rent anything, and I don’t need to bother with a credit rating either.

      The only problem with too much stuff is that travel is a challenge long term. I don’t care about travel for its own sake, but there are reasons to go elsewhere on occasion. I’m slowly cleaning out and removing anything that has no real purpose in the next 10-15 years. After that, I’ll probably become worm food too.

      There are feral cats here and I love and appreciate them. We sometimes meet and will have a 15 minute non-verbal communication from about 20 feet away. They hide well and I’ve no idea where to feed them, but if I do meet one, I leave some food where they can find it. I really appreciate the reduction in rodents here since last year and I’ll credit the cats.

  3. Good points George on being prepared. During a worldwide disaster, the only people able to help will be the ones currently at the command posts. The rest won’t be able to get there or will be trying to survive just like the rest. The majority of rescuers will be in the same boat as us, so don’t expect any help from FEMA, the Red Cross, etc.

    • My niece had a tornado wipe out their home…then a flood wiped what was left away..FEMA .. Was there to help… She was confident … In the end the assistance they got was twenty bucks and a good luck lol insurance well we all know what a joke that is..
      That’s one of the one two punches the gentleman we have living with us endured..wiped out by a storm lost their big home wiped out financially by that and insurance well its a joke.
      A few other punches from different directions and his six figure income gone savings gone what he depended on gone..he wasn’t ever able to recover..
      Prepare individually but make arrangements to plan for community even if they aren’t concerned about prepping

  4. George

    “A great prepping exercise is to figure out how many ways you can use an old barrel.”

    Take two barrels and cut them in half top to bottom. Affix them to a vertical axle so as to resemble a wind vane. Harness said axle to a power producing device like an alternator. Place this assembly where the wind blows. Collect produced power into doing work or saving energy for later use.

    Problem solved.

    • Regrettably, we live in something like Wind Zone 1 or 2. Most times, we get zero wind.
      While I’ve landed places (Hannibal Missouri where the cross-winds were brutal (blowing 20 gusting 30) we see that kind of wind here maybe a few days a year.
      Believe me, if there was wind, we’d be harvesting it.
      Reason to move to an Abilene hilltop? No.
      Just need to remember in this county the highest windows are the hot air drafts from the county courthouse when commissioners meet.

    • I have a nice wind turbine..years ago when I decided that my legacy should be to teach the kids renewables was the way of the future. I designed a roof mount to teach them it is safe and feasible.. The downside you have limited wind..to get high wind you have to go up.. I did consider making a zero energy turbine using roof vent turbines..
      Solar is the way. Micro systems well distributed at lift station intervals the way the grid is designed now its just open for anything dramatic.
      A good place to check out is

      http://www.mwands.com

      Prepping is a way of life though.. So many ask me how to begin.. One can don’t let yourself be overwhelmed..instead they put their faith in plenty. One lady was asking me and said she only had a small amount I said..you’ve never been scared so scared that you feared you wouldn’t survive. Those from the depression had store houses of stuff.. Hid money in jars and cans buried them by trees etc. Just in case. This time it will be different the dollar isn’t strong.. They’ve destroyed it when it goes I think instead of a few coins it will take truckloads of cash. We see the graphs but has anyone compared our economic outlook and place to the weimer period to give a hint as to how far we will fall.
      In the event the puppeteers want to start a war to cut down population well its not good basically because I don’t think they give a hoot about any of us we are expendable. I also think who is it They want to control..they already have the power of life and death with the bottom feeders like myself which group don’t they have control over. Just saying

  5. We feed our half-dozen or so feral cats a bit more in the winter but I’m always amazed when they bring us a squirrel skin laid out like a small bear rug on the Welcome mat. Squirrels are particularly challenging prey given their size and speed so they keep the cats in good form throughout the year.

    Like you, George, we’ve not seen any more than one mouse in the house in years around here in town. We had a real problem with them until the cats moved in. No snakes either. I’ve tried to transplant them to the ranch but that didn’t work out as those, apparently, couldn’t fend for themselves beyond the occasional bowl of dry food I’d put out. There have been a couple of hearty cats I’ve observed out there which is always surprising as their coats offer absolutely no camouflage. The closest they can come to matching out there with anything was a black and white goat. At a distance they might look like a rock. My guess is the coyotes cleaned them out.

    As a predator they are ideal, though. Too small to take down livestock but they can make a living off the small rodents that make life troublesome. They also haven’t had the “wild” bred out of them and probably never will.

  6. Cats cut down on the snake population if you haven’t noticed. They like to play with them and it must scare them off, because I’ve never seen a cat kill a rattled!

  7. So, you wouldn’t use the barrels which had ‘crud’ in them for growing stuff, but you would use them as shelter for a living, breathing animal?

    I have seen videos on how people make fantastic steel drums from them though . . .

    • I’m looking at drum plans while I write.. The top part for the drum part and the rest would work as a “stump burner”

  8. “SOMEONE HAS TO GET RICH”

    Wow……..
    Did I say wow.. I meant.. WOW….
    just got notice health insurance for the wife just went up again along with two other monthly necessities.. I wonder if they didn’t want us to drop the insurance plan and do like the millions of others do let those with insurance pay for any medical expenses we have.. and none of that with any pay until the 7500.00 deductible is met..
    figures out to around fourteen dollars per hour labor clear just for her insurance.. of course she had some medical issues about thirty years ago.. and until Obama Care couldn’t get insurance except through a work.I hate to even imagine what mine would be.. I have all the medical issues. but today most jobs only offer insurance to the full time employees and the majority of the labor is considered part time and only management or the skeleton crew as full…
    what is funny is I had the car in for an oil change and getting the dog groomed for christmas.. and decided while I waited for the servicing I would stop off for a burger at my favorite burger joint.( I don’t usually eat fast food because I lived on fast food for the majority of my life running from one job to another and get nauseous if I eat in the car.. psychological I am sure..)
    but funny thing is there was a line..
    the guy in front of me was complaining that it was because the people working are insisting on more money an hour and then said who ever heard of a burger joint paying fourteen dollars an hour.. I said.. I don’t know but I can see why.. health insurance unless you want to pay their way is fourteen dollars an hour.. rent .. that is ten dollars an hour clear.. utilities car etc etc.. give me a break. and the reason they are running with a smaller staff has nothing to do with what the hourly wage is.. its because of environmental expenses.. you cannot continue to increase water sewer gas electric without it taking some tole.. the same thing goes for the people.. those expenses cannot be shoved off on you and me because then they are not competitive so the only options are to shorten shifts..
    cut an hour or two off of everyone’s wages..
    to prep for something like that.. well my church tells everyone that the time is coming and everyone should have at least three months worth of resources.. I think they are wrong.. we went a year without an income a few years ago.. and we sure could have used two years worth of resources available.. the biggest drawback to finding another position.. was job tenure and age.. the fact that the position was held for over two decades was the drawback.. and the age and wage.. went from top wage and of course at our ages employers realize that you have obligations are all determinants for an employer..
    I have friends in canada that are always razzing me about how great their medical system is.. I of course will hear from people in the usa how long the wait lists are.. LOL LOL LOL they of course are not in the position of the regular laborers since those waits are the same here.. the next specialist I see has a two year waiting list for an appointment… of course if I was a multi millionaire I am sure that waiting list would be shorter.. LOL.. our medical system is the same as our congressmen we have the best that money can buy..

    I know from listening to others that our situation is a common one..and everyone is having to cut costs in other areas.. one of them is unnecessary spending. I was at the grocery store.. yup my limiting my banana runs.. I figured would save five hundred a month.. it saved us seven hundred a month.. I am now doing pre ordering.. order online then stop and pickup.. amazing simply amazing how much that cut our costs simply from not buying things not on the list.. I have two people that eat bar b que chips for snacks.. the chip company now only makes a majority of corn chips.. well they still make potato chips but check the line up you will see sixty rows for corn chips and four for potato chips and two for bar b que chips.. and nothing for the individual packages.. so I have to order them online made outside the usa and cheaper with free shipping.. to get them. when I asked the chip guy he had told me that corn was cheaper so the national company is pushing corn chips.. and that stores now won’t fill even from a back stock products from vendors.. amazing I worked as one of my hats grocery for decades we would have been fired for not facing or filling from back stock an empty shelf is a loss of income..

    • WOW! Does your wife really rack up annual medical expenses that total more than $7500 plus the amount of monthly premiums you pay?

      • Nope…Mr. Wacky.. Only had one sprained ankle in twenty five years..
        But thirty five years ago or so she was in school then.. she had a minor stroke.. Came out if it ok..but .. Even if you have zits as a child or any kind of illness you are targeted. Doesn’t matter if your healthy or not the risk factor goes up. That’s what got Obama in office the first term.. Insurance companies discriminate and deny insurance..when I worked in the health industry we had meetings where they would say thirty percent didn’t have insurance. Of course all of that started after deregulation.. And every ones costs have been spiraling out of control since. Pharmaceuticals are thousands of percentages higher here than other countries.. Insurance plans in your area isn’t available in our area..
        Its all a business model..

    • Right there with you on the insurance. I have none but the wife does through her work as does the daughter and granddaughter. I’m hanging out there with nothing paying as I go and, so far, still ahead of the game but at my age it won’t last much longer. Hoping I can make it till Medicare kicks in. … Ya, right – Medicare! Like that’s gonna be there in a few years.

      For the burger flippers wanting $14/hr I’d just roll in one of those robot flippers, point to two or three of the workers and say “Meet your replacement.” This’ll save enough to pay everyone else the big bucks and only raise the cost of a basic burger to $11.50 before you put the lettuce, tomatoes and what have you on it.

      • Samaritan Ministries, Liberty Healthcare, look them up; they have solutions for what ails ya’ll. Now that Obamacare has been declared unconstitutional (which it was right from the beginning, except for that certain paid off Supreme), and now that all the old models have been dismantled (lower monthly premiums, go to a doctor of your choice, low annual deductibles, variety and choice in providers, etc.), it’s gonna be a free for all! Come on, ditch the Insurance scam and get help with your actual medical bills.

      • Yup and then they are forced to seek out federal programs …
        In the old days industrialists and small employers thought of community first..
        When they deregulated necessities my first thought was the insurance companies would force the bottom feeders off the plans. One reason or another cause the need for a socialized medical system. Anti discrimination laws are out the books they can openly rape the public.. Switch the blame in them.. Then as the people are forced out they could inflate costs. The hospitals and medical systems don’t work for free.. One third not able to pay these expenses can be written off and then passed on..doctors pay higher rent and office space a Kleenex ten dollars.. Pretty soon they can justify a social medicine tax everyone thirty percent for a basic policy..then…sell add on packages..getting old well here’s a package..maybe cancer here’s another package how about an accident etc… They not only have the inflated prices they created but a given thirty percent tax from everyone..and the packages which would be approximately what they would have been making without the deregulation. A reasonable assumption would be someplace in the ten thousand percent profit range given they follow that avenue with out the economy tanking.
        Its all a business model. They’re pretty open with how it works..that’s why the USA has one of the worst ratings in national healthcare in the world.

      • Thanks IMHO… I am checking into liberty health share from Samaritan Ministries..
        from the little bit they have that I read sounds like the way Health insurance use to be managed before deregulation..
        I won’t know until I read the particulars which they haven’t shared yet. it is definitely cheaper according to the estimate to..

    • Yup regulation and costs are killing business. Also filling out forms is making several jobs inefficient. Governments want all kinds of data that in the past people would not have bothered to collect.

    • One of the clerks was saying she just didn’t have any money to give any gifts this year..I said beck give them a small bag of coal..she laughed and said that would be perfect if she could get some someplace.. I laughed and informed her we heat with coal…so I gave her fifteen pounds ..her Xmas shopping is done…

  9. George,

    Here’s a thought for a column: When we’re young, we have hopes, dreams and aspirations. We may have had a mission in life. After we’ve accomplished such missions or they became irrelevant, how do we truly create or find a purpose in life? At 70, what purpose can we undertake that’s credible, achievable, and actually worth pursuing? Without visible passion for something, you become invisible to the world, and with sufficient resources, there’s no particular reason to engage at all, other than connection. “Improving yourself” makes sense if you want to, but unless you’re a burden to society, it really doesn’t matter to anyone else. Age is the most insidious type of discrimination, with government stamping every ID document you have with a DOB and social organizations age bracketing eligibility.

    Society at large used to respect elders, yet we’ve now changed the wording to the diminutive noun phrase “the elderly”. Now elders are exiled to a life outside the mainstream and if we force our way in, we’re nominally tolerated rather than accepted. Some of us have wealth that everyone has their hands out for, but the mainstream wishes we’d at least stay out of sight. We’re supposed to just buy medical services rather than live large and edgy until we die. It seems that the 18-54 cohort is largely embarrassed to be caught associating with us unless we’re very powerful or famous people.

    • Well said. Been feeling for some time that my presence is just “tolerated,” and it would be nice if I would just quietly go away. Unless someone needs money. And at the ripe age of 66, how does one “reinvent” oneself?

      • Actually, Elaine and I are working on that – it will be Peoplenomics topic for next Wednesday…complete with the 17 page PowerPoint we weent through…

      • Patricia, “You must be kidding” I’d normally say, but sadly I have no answer for your state of mind (and that’s what it is!).

        Yes, GU, there is a lot of business opportunity for people able, and willing to help these souls.

      • Patricia at the age of 76 I had to takeover the diaper changing 24 hrs a day for a newborn.That lasted for 4 yrs and revitalized my life. I have read in health publications that it changes your DNA to be in so much contact with a young one. About the age of one I started reading 4 or 5 word sentences in child books for 15 min or so. Soon she wanted more reading and we got to about an hour a day and soon it was 2 hrs a day. Still only had about 8 books and not long sentences. Expensive children books quickly bore the young mind. They need the pictures and short sentences. At not quiet 2 she was going and picking up books to read and we repeated these few books over and over and it was her selections that we read every day 7 days a week. Fast forward 6 yrs and she is in the Abq school systems Gifted Program .Forgot to mention we did a lot of athletic stuff at a young age and is becoming a good gymnasts and works hard on excelling. So if you want to younganize your DNA get involved with young ones and you can probably help yourself and some young ones in there growing up. Will comment on what has done for me in that as you age some things start falling apart. Instead of laying down on the ccuch and saying gods will. Get busy and figure whats happening. Sure helps MDs use their knowledge better.. To wind this up had my annual physical and all my labs within perfect range. Oh am 84 and loving it.

      • Awesome, AlbJoe. You have re-found your purpose and rejeuvenated yourself. My Dad lived a most amazing life of hard work, and he looked so young; he was a very involved hands-on Dad, and he really came alive when Round Two, the Grandchildren, came along. I am sure his outward beauty was directly related to his inner beauty of love of his family, friends, and strangers. He glowed right up until he passed from the earth surrounded by his loving family. He always said the children keep a person young.

    • I agree 100% with NM MIKE and Patricia. George, I’m glad you are going to tackle the issue on Wed. You’d think with 70 or so years of experience in multiple different fields people would be anxious to include Geezers in their circle just for brain picking, but that ain’t how it works is it. However if/when the SHTF it’s the geezers that will remember how we did things in the “old days”.

    • NM: I am 70 & am having a great time. I go to the gym 3 days a week in the mornings for senior time, buy & sell items I buy at thrift stores, do stupid projects according to my wife, go camping, fishing, watch the stock market, & post on George’s site all in a no stress retired environment.

      But, I am easily amused.

    • I am 61 and I think that the way to stay young and relevant is to never grow up. I learned this from my grandmother who lived to 96. She ran everyday, danced, bowled till 94… worked till she was 90, was extremely social and listened to new and current music and never looked back at her past. She used to tell me… learn from the past, but never live in the past. She never told anyone her age and always looked 20 years younger than she was. She outlived her husband and at 78 had men in their late 50’s and 60’s asking her out on dates. She could have lived to 106 if she hadn’t injured her hip while at a dance competition at the age of 94. When she broke her hip, it broke her spirit. She passed away within 2 years of the injury.

      I admired her and have proudly adapted her lifestyle. I run 4 miles a day, lift weights and practice yoga and meditation. My wife and I are very socially active and a majority of our friends are in the 30’s and 40’s.

      I listen to the same music as my sons (indie and alt rock), still play softball and the occasional pick up basketball game at the club,l and go on tough mountain hikes at least once or twice a month depending on the weather. I am a voracious reader and belive that we must work out our minds as much or more than our bodies. I Am an early adopter and love to try new technology and new fads like riding the ubiquitous last mile electric scooters in the city, explore new clubs that are constantly opening up in SF.

      Health wise, I eat organic/ paleo…cut out bread and beef, only drink red wine, make a mean smoothie every morning and even though I am Italian, try my best to eat that stuff in moderation. (That part is hard). Which is why I work out a lot.

      Acting young, eating right and staying in shape is a great start to a prepping lifestyle and can make a shift in lifestyle, should the world implode…much more enjoyable. No need to redefine or reinvent yourselves . Be the person you have always been. Age is a number and too many people treat the added years as a sentence and not a beautiful experience.

      Yep, I am 61 going on 30…I feel the same, think the same and therefore I am the same person as I was in my 30’s. Make sense? When the world comes crashing down, because I have always adapted and embraced change, I will be better equipped to handle the challenge.

      • Mark, you seem “perfect” except for bashing our POTUS. I do agree with you a lot — but what are your psycholocical boogy men ? ;-)

    • The Underground House Book by Stu Campbell

      My Dad passed away in 1980, shortly after my mother acquired this book. As part of my healing, I buried myself in this, and ancillary publications, primarily from the University of Minnesota Press.

      Since I became a “grown-up” (assuming I ever have) I’ve had a strong dislike for paying for energy. My goal in life is to acquire sufficient land and resources to build a proper low-maintenance, negative-energy farm. The above have contributed greatly to this pursuit. Endeavors have been made periodically, but I’m not where I wish to be with this pursuit. My intention is to build exactly what I want, exactly where I want it and the way I want it, and leave sufficient time at the twilight end of the candle that I can restore vintage vehicles, appliances, radios, and furniture, and leave something substantial to my employees and my kids, after I’m gone, without concern for the world around us, at large. This is why I’ll never completely retire, and why I’d never want to.

      Patricia, you’re right, and it’s because you have nothing to offer, from the young’uns point of view. They don’t care about the stuff we know, because they don’t see an application for it in their world. When I locate my forever house, I hope to find a few kids (meaning “under 35s”) whom I can interest in building stuff and fixing stuff up, even if just as a hobby, ‘cuz when the poo meets the rotary air circulator, the tinker or general repairman will be king, and the typical Xer or Millennial, who sees no reason to learn the stuff we know, until they need to know and apply it, will be lost without them. You can learn to wire an outlet in a minute, but there’s a reason electrical apprenticeships take four years to complete, and ya gots to know yer trig to receive a journeyman’s card…

      • you and me both… I would love to own an underground house.. there use to be a place that makes prefab underground houses in the USA.. I think the call for them wasn’t that great and they closed shop.. but you can still get a prefab from..overseas but in the usa.. nope..
        https://www.terra-dome.com/
        the first time I considered something like this was when I was a spelunking kid.. went into one cavern and by god the people that mined that cave had it fixed up pretty cool…. then the son of an old friend of my mothers.. the kid was going to school and someone gave him an old farm house.. he was excited.. going to move it on a basement.. got a loan then the Reagan recession hit.. money dried up and he was stuck with a shell of a basement and not enough to move the house onto the basement.. so he put a roof over it.. fixed up the inside .. loved it so much he never did put the building on top.. has an under ground courtyard and pool.. beautiful gorgeous dome over the top.. expanded it.. there is more light in that house than anyplace I have ever been in.. a green house year round garden.. it is absolutely beautiful.. of course it would be considered an earth bermed house and not an underground house.. I have been in a few of the deep shelters those two are out of this world but.. it is dark and there is little natural light if any..
        I couldn’t ever get a loan to build an earth sheltered home.. my thought was rammed earth.. do a twenty four inch wall double with sand in the middle with venting to make an envelope for a solar heating roof.. put natural thromb wall on the south facing with green house.. you could build a rammed earth home cheap enough the hard part is getting it approved. ( I know earth sheltered structures have been in existence for thousands of years and over seventy percent of all building is with earth) I am when it decides it isn’t going to rain so much build a storm shelter.. I have some kids whenever I am ready from a couple of colleges that want extra credit for school and a couple of prof’s that are totally interested.. in Kansas a prof acquaintance of mine did that about ten years ago had the kids do some testing on stabilized earth..the results were fantastic..

    • Mike.. I think we were all lead to the water..
      constantly given the lullaby of what is important.. you cannot have fun uless you eat this or drink that.. you use to see commercials on tv saying you can get a sexxy lady if you smoke this or that.. they target your subconscious and we buy it.. hook line and sinker.. your phone isn’t any good unless you have this new one that sings.. or that one.. I didn’t realize what was truly important until I got sick.. What you are lead to believe is important hasn’t any importance at all..
      our parents and grandparents didn’t rush out and buy the new toys they saved for them and then repaired what they had.. today we throw it out and buy new.. why wait you have plastic.. we didn’t have cable or internet what was important back then was the family trip to the lake or a neighborhood potluck picknic we actually closed the streets so we could play catch….Social groups like the Mason’s and the IOOF the lion’s clubs church.. that was what had importance.
      you were defined by who you were not by what you had..

      • Anon, I think we can all agree that you won’t get the sexxy lady because you smoked this or that, or even if you bought a Porsche! Those things may get some attention, but that’s it, nothing more. It’s a vibe thing after that, along with having none of a thousand disqualifiers in plain sight.

        One thing that most honest guys admit to themselves, if not to others, is that without that sexxy lady at your side, or having some reciprocal claim with one, you’re less than a full member of society, regardless of the hype otherwise. If we look at the responses above, the ones that say they are truly happy with their lives, including Mark, all have wives, and they bothered to mention the fact.

        I’ve had fast cars, motorcycles, boats and planes. None made a significant difference in sex appeal. They were fun though.

      • Something you may not know, Mike. Women have a series of “chairs” men have to go through.

        You will hardly ever see an average guy go from no GF to stellar knockout covergirl companion.

        No, you start off with one…(the first chair) and you get out, about and seen a bit.
        Then, it’s easy to move up to the second chair. (GF 2)
        After 3-4 GF’s you are (or should) by now be dating what Andy would label a hottie.

        The other thing to remember is women regardless of their looks are insecure and seemingly aware that they use their looks (to one degree or another) to get through life. Don’t approach them on the physical level or with that agenda. Like cats, they sense this. What works better is to observe for a while and find out what their passion is – and approach on that basis. Takes more time, but it’s the difference between “meat fishing” and “fly fishing” if you follow…

  10. Yo George, greetings from the great flooded mid Atlantic. Todays NY Times has an interesting article titled ” Are You Ready for the Financial Crisis of 2019?” Either someone has been reading your site or the Old Gray Lady is telegraphing the coming financial crisis. Times telegraphed the legalizaion of Marijuana in their Sunday Review section from July 27, 2014. Just curious observations about the herding of the sheeple….

  11. Good stuff George!!! With reguards to, “SOMEONE HAS TO  GET RICH.  ONE OF THE RULERS!”

    Thats the plan! We shall see. Just wont sell my soul, work for them or any of that.

    Perhaps a Trade? We shall see.

    No, no “they that be” havent contacted me as of yet.. i made the first move,

    In not so many words, i told them “their” approach to the conversation, prior to them having it. Yes! Some of it, i publically proclaimed verbatim, in way that it would definitely be noticd, by them.

    A clear and consise, “message” to them, because there are no coincidences in “their” world. Everything is a “calculated” aproach to livng and buisness.

    So for now, “they” are reconsidering their position, i presume. While, i wait, patiently.

    Its a mutual respect thing.

    I have been Isolating for the better part of the last 3 months. Thinking about stuff, spent almost all day yesterday, last night and today chowing down vast quantities of information, off the Web. Just me and my kitty.

    I suppose tomorrow morning i will merge back into mainstream living. All my friends, have been wondering where i been.

    Back to the land of the Living.

    • Andy – be sure to read the Oneironaut log which will be posted this Wednesday – I think you of all people will enjoy the hell out of it…

  12. I have the biggest, hairiest, white beast of a cat, I’ve named Yeti-Cat (officially Mr. StayPuft). He just showed up one day out of nowhere, and after some tlc and a few vet visits, he actually turned out to be quite a pretty one too. He’s got a terrible attitude and is a little psychocotic, but man is he a straight up killer to rodents. He’s gone after skunks, mice (shrews/moles, etc), rabbits, groundhogs, and raccoons. I can attest he’s killed all but the skunk, as he’s left them on my front door.. or at least a some hairy remains of such that we’ve had to decipher. His other saving grace is that he’s hypoallergenic. I have horrible, horrible allergies to cats and dogs, and his lucky day was when I figured out he wasn’t going to throw me into an allergy med induced coma over swollen eyes and tight airways.

    I wasn’t really all that excited about having a cat, but he’s earned a little respect in that he chased, killed, and ate pest critters that were rather quite a bit larger than he.

    • hey george, love your little idea-space here. my eyes really perked up when i saw allan savory’s name. he’s been a hero of mine for decades. as far as nobody gets rich on his management is so true. (heard some ‘inside’ stories of that reality, in person) i had the pleasure and privilege of hanging out with his son rodger for a few days. brilliant guy and fascinating life and view. i wish i could look thru either of their ‘eyes’ for a day.

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