Article – How Google is secretly recording YOU through your mobile…and storing the creepy audio files

DID you know that Google has been recording you without your knowledge?

The technology giant has effectively turned millions of its users’ smartphones into listening devices that can capture intimate conversations – even when they aren’t in the room.

Just for the sake of curiosity, I followed the directions in this article to see if there was aything on me. Apparently, at some point I had turned of most of the tracking stuff. But not all. My YouTube viewing history was there. (Fortunately, it was my viewing history for only Youtube… IYKWIMAITYD)

I have met some people who gently insist that, when having conversations with them in person, the phones be disabled or left elsewhere. Perhaps there’s some merit to that.

Interesting article and very much worth reading from a privacy standpoint. You’d have to be insane to think that there aren’t .gov actors who take advantage of these sorts of things.

Tactical Notebook Covers

Ran into an interesting piece of gear this weekend. Somebody took the idea of the ol’ Trapper Keeper, dropped it in a vat of multicam, rolled it around in some molle, and added a lot of velcro to get these.

The one I got to examine was this model. I rather like the idea of having a separate system of keeping reference material at hand while writing. Could be maps, could be checklists, could be dryads, other code sheets, etc.

The one I examined appeared well-made and wuite well thought out. There’s a certain  modularity to these things allowing all sortsa useful accessories to be added on.

For the longest time I’ve been using one of the Write-In-The-Rain systems and while they work well, they are expensive and lack many of the features I saw on the TNC units.

I’m ordering up a couple of these for myself and will have more detail on them when they arrive. School starts next week and I’m looking forward to using this tactical Trapper Keeper at my classes.

Article – How To Wash Radioactive Material From Your Body After A Nuclear Blast

This is what passes for news, I guess. I imagine somewhere in Yahoo’s offices and editor was desperate for some sort of NorK-themed article to use for clickbait and this is what they came up with. Is there anyone here who really didnt know that washing off radioactive fallout is a good idea?

Even though North Korean leader Kim Jong Un outlined his plans to rain “an enveloping fire” around the U.S. territory of Guam and then opted not to fire missiles at this point of time, Guam’s office of Civil Defence has still carefully laid out a new set of guidelines on Aug. 11, that teach how to take cover before an explosion along with facts like avoiding hair conditioner after a nuclear explosion.

I very much question the utility of this article. Nonetheless, I offer a link to it for those who might see it differently than I.

The Trader

When I was a kid they had such things as ‘Army-Navy Stores’ which were, ostensibly, military surplus outlets. They still have them but now most of the stuff is made in China crap rather than genuine GI stuff. The greatest of these places was a place called The Trader over on Canal St. in Manhattan. It was an old building from the ’20s that was just jam packed with all sortsa gear. Sadly, I discovered that The Trader is no longer in business.

Canal St., by the way, was an awesome collection of stores for above-board and sometimes below-board stuff. Computer geeks were especially drawn to all the electronics surplus that some stores carried. I remember buying stuff t do all sortsa computer-related chaos.

Canal Street was also pretty mucht he place to buy illegal fireworks back in the day. There was nothing subtle about it. Just don’t blow anyone up and everyone pretyy much loked the other way.

After 9/11 The Trader was kind of an everyman’s survival supply. Sure, it was ostensibly a surplus store, but savvy survivalist knew that in all those piles of old Vietnam era flight suits, German ponchos, and surplus wool socks, there were a few things that could be useful for when the end of the world came.

I’ve linked to this article in the past, but it really is worth a repost…especially now that The Trader appears* to have gone the way of other great hole-in-the-wall specialty shops that used to populate NYC.

Survivor N.Y.C.


* = It appears The Trader is no longer in business. Google Earth shows a new business at the old Trader location on Canal Street.

Only you can prevent forest

It’s forest fire season here in Montana. At the moment the air quality index is reading “Extra Chunky Style”. Remember when you were a kid and you were toasting marshmallows around the fire? The smoke would eventually settle on you as a target and basically follow you around the campfire? Yeah, it’s like that.

Not much you can do about it, it’s just part and parcel of living in Free(er) America.

I’ve been busy with ‘real world’ stuff lately so posting has been thin, but fear not…there’s plenty of brain droppings a-brewing.

And, as several people pointed out to me, speaking of elevators……

Elderly Denver man died in elevator after twice pushing emergency button

I’ve some interesting links people have emailed me about elevators and how to escape them…I’ll be putting them all up in a post later.


When I was a kid, I remember watching a tenant in the building I lived in open an elevator door by sticking a butterknife into that little round hole that we see on the door. I also remember, back in the day, that elevators had trap doors on the roof of the cab. Nowadays, the newer elevators have no such trapdoor nor little round hole on the interior of the cab. The idea being that in an emergency, the last thing rescuers want is elevator passengers crawling around the roof of the elevator.

I’ve never found much info about how those little round holes on the elevator door worked, though. And am curious about how a person would force open elevator doors these days.I know some of you reading this work in fields that might have some knowledge on the subject…anyone have any links to any references on how to escape or force your way into an elevator?

Gun Show

The big Missoula Gun Show is this weekend (starting today, actually). I’m going to put on my human suit, trot down there, and see if I can turn a Gold Cup into a pair of Glocks (or a Belgian HiPower).

Although, come to think of it, I could use an ACOG……..

See you there.


ETA: Merciful Crom…I like an SKS as much as the next guy, but when you dump $300 worth of Tapco and UTG crap onto it and bbua-tize to make it an AK47 you hit the point where you should just buy an AK47. Seriously.

Kerosene and the ghost of Y2K

Well, I think I’m pretty much done on buying kerosene for the rest of my life. Last time I bought kerosene was here. That was an awesome deal.

Was tooling through Craigslist (when? When will I learn??) and, lo and behold, a fella selling 14 5-gallon drums of kero. For those of you who went to public government schools, that’s 70 gallons. Or, if you’re in a country that never put a man on the moon, 265 liters.

20170801_101755The fella was asking way, way, too much for the stuff so I made him an offer. Wound up getting it for $200…a tad under $3/gallon. (ok, fine….$2.86/gallon).

I  love kerosene…it burns hottest of the liquid fuels, keeps forever with no special treatment, is safe to store, and has a nice market of stoves, lamps, and heaters out there.

My anticipated use? Well, it’s winter for a good chunk of the year here and it would be nice to keep the house toasty in the event of a power outage. Most likely these will go into storage with the last batch of 5-gallon drums I bought. There they will wait until the day when it’s dark, cold, and dreary and I shall have light, heat, and hot food.

Here’s the interesting part… I met the guy, a rather old gentleman who, sadly, was dying of cancer, and as I was moving the cans out of his rather neat and nicely stocked garage I asked him why he had so much of it. His reply was that it was his leftover Y2K stash. Apparently he’d gone long on Y2K stuff. I suspected as much as I looked around his garage and saw the rifle cases, cases of ammo, etc, etc. All the hallmarks of someone who is on the same page. We chatted a bit about the Y2K thing and about how we’d rather have it and not need it, etc, etc. I thanked him for the deal and assured him it was going to a home that shared his concerns and mindset.

I also told him that if he had any other Y2K leftovers he wanted to sell, to please keep me in mind.

So for those of you who wonder how you meet like-minded individuals, there’s another example.

I did the math to figure out how may gallons of kerosene I have in storage and I think I may have actually gone a tad heavier than I planned. I’m going to have to contact a few of the LMI and see if they want some…I don’t think I really need more than 100 gallons for any forseeable emergency.