It’s a strictly subjective thing, but to me one of the signs that you’ve progressed into genuine preparedness is when you start showing the same level of enthusiasm for the non-gun stuff as you showed for the gun stuff. As I’ve said before, its very easy to get wrapped up in the gun angle and neglect the less sexy aspects of things.
Anyway, this post shall, in that spirit, be (mostly) 100% gun free.
Spring is just starting here in the mountains but Im already thinking towards next winter. If last years fuel prices and this years increasing gas prices are any indicator (which maybe they aren’t) its gonna be an expensive thing to heat the house this winter. How expensive? Darn near $300 a month on some months. Of course, in the summer its only about $75 or less. I have a programmable thermostat which makes a huuuuge difference and if you don’t already have one, I heartily recommend one. Mine is set to keep things down around 60 degrees when everyone is in bed under the blankets, cranks up to 70 for an hour before we get up so we get up to a warm house, drop to 63 for most of the day while we’re at work and the house is empty, and then up to around 65 for the evening. Sure you could remember to do all that on your own but consistently remembering to adjust the thermostat is a lot easier said than done. The thermostats are usually less than $30 and are easy to install (Hey, most thermostats are only 3 wires anyway, right?) I do believe that it has saved me money in the past by keeping the heat down when no one is around.
Of course, living in an old house means that theres old windows, thermally inefficient doors, and a decided lack of insulation… this summer I must, must, must get out and caulk the frames for the storm windows, replace a couple storm doors, and do a few other things to help keep the old homestead warm. Tell you what though, I ever build my own place its going to be so thermally efficient and airtight that if I belch the windows will bulge outwards. (Well, okay, maybe not that airtight…but damn close.)
I was mulling over the .30 hours of overtime Im going to have this paycheck and figured that comes out to about $5. I thought about whether $5 was worth the hassle of staying an extra twenty minutes and I thought “Well, its five bucks you didn’t have before so how bad could that be?” but I also thought a lot of people wouldn’t make the effort for five bucks. So, whats five bucks worth to the good Commander?
Most of a box of 9mm ammo, an emergency space blanket, a plastic gasoline can, 2.5# of discounted beef for the freezer, a case of bottled water, about 20# of rice, spare batteries, five cans of canned food, one freeze dried food pouch, one MRE, 250 rounds of .22 ammo, several bars of soap, several tolls of TP, spare lantern mantles, at least one or two 1# bottles of propane, Ziploc bags for storage, a .30 cal. ammo can, disposable razors, notepads and pens, a cheap pocketknife, ~2 gallons of gas, and a host of other things that, when the time comes, will seem worth an awful lot more than five bucks. Moral of the story: no amount of money is too little if you shop carefully and think about your purchases and your needs.
The big Bird Flu movie is on TV tonight. I’ve got the Tivo cocked-n-locked and ready to record. Think there’ll be folks like you and me portrayed? Possibly. Portrayed as smart and resourceful individuals worthy of commendation? I doubt it. Portrayed as gun-toting selfish whackjobs? Probably. If nothing else it should be interesting entertainment. I haven’t seen a decent made-for-tv disaster movie since that horrible earthquake movie a year or so ago. Matter of fact, speaking of disaster movies, I need to check around and see if I can find a copy of ‘Threads’ locally. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a movie about a nuclear war and its aftermath in England..depressing, scary and fatalistic its probably one of the grittier movies about such things….right? I mean, could there be a more distressing movie? Actually, yes…and it was also done by the Brits and was determined to be so disturbing they wouldn’t show it on tv and shelved it for around twenty years. Mmmmmm…that’s good apocalypse!