ARMY TRAINING SIR!*
note: how cool is this? Ultra low-tech distiller. A clay vessel shaped like a dunce cap with drain hole. See in the fifth episode of Tales From The Green Valley, minute twelve. click here
The movie “Stripes” had a lot of memorable quotes, the title of this article one of them ( “what kind of training did you receive, soldier?” ). My other favorite was “lighten up, Francis”. It was also one of Bill Murphy’s better films ( granted, this is not saying much. Bill and Chevy were in my opinion mostly overrated past their younger days-and that is only because Hollywood made better films in the ’80’s anyway ). The reason I loved it back in the day, but don’t care if I see it now or not, is because it did a great job poking fun at a subject taken way too seriously. Can you imagine the movie being made today, as we are expected to jingoistically salute all things martial.
Being in the military, I loved watching the humor directed at the institution I had erroneously attached myself to. Yes, they were incompetent puds. But, even so, it’s good not to take ANYTHING too seriously. Dedication, sure. Devotion, no doubt. Discipline is important. But for goodness sakes, don’t take yourself too seriously to the point you can’t see the hilarious side of yourself. As soon as you can laugh at yourself, life is much more enjoyable. You can laugh at your own dumb ass, you can laugh at everyone else’s antics. And seeing them take themselves too seriously can at times be hilarious.
Which brings up the coming collapse. It IS going to happen, as day follows night. You can take any excuse you want, from room temperature fusion ( now called “fracking” ) to ‘Murican Hubris Uber Alles, and that don’t stop Malthus Mayhem. You add water to flour to get a pancake. Works every time. Now add overpopulation to contracting resources. Different outcome this time? Your ass ( the Green Revolution was very small parts new grain strains and very large parts extra petroleum. GMO’s are only securing increased company profits, NOT increasing the food supply. All this century, we are growing less than we need, and the old reserves are almost gone. NOW, add in energy contraction ).
I know, you know, and Ross Perot knows that the collapse is baked into the cake. If you desire to make things even more dire, add in Gore Warming, if you wish. But things will be bad enough as it is ( actually, other than food production, weird weather will have far less impact on us later than it is now, as post-modern we will have far less irreplaceable infrastructure than we do now ). And it doesn’t look like we’ll have a heck of a lot of time before it happens. But does taking that so seriously REALLY mean we are preparing better?
I respect anyone dedicated enough to alter their current lifestyle to prepare. You almost have to, to make a difference. And yes, you do have to do a lot of things differently. From starting to eat more of that whole wheat you’ve stored, to weaning yourself from the motor vehicle ( wean, not withdraw ) to getting your head right on a lot of things ( starting to hate strangers enough for when you must kill them, start accepting your own early death, beginning to pull back on luxuries you believe to be necessities ). But do you have to lose your sense of humor?
Training is by definition hard. But everyone takes it WAY too seriously. All those folks being hard core right now? The extensive PT, the budget crushing ammo expenditure? They are needed, BUT!, I would submit to you that you are taking it too seriously. The fact of the matter is that any training is insufficient at this point. Training is not life experience and never can be. But training is never a substitute because all of us view training the wrong way. We think we are going to school and will get a degree and become proficient. Unfortunately, this is complete crap.
How do we learn life? As children, we learn by watching and then learn by doing and then improve with practice. But only by daily repetitive practice. Those super studs that are crack shots under pressure, or are in the physical prime of their life? They are One Trick Ponies. It takes so much time and energy to master that one aspect that they leave room for very little else. If you had grown up doing these tasks, as in the days of yore when training was a lifetime endeavor ( or when they started early enough in an apprenticeship ), then it would take little every day as an adult to stay proficient. When you start training as an adult, you must place a far larger block of time and effort keeping mastery. And that becomes your specialization. Which blocks out other skills acquisition.
Adult education is vastly overrated. And childhood education is vastly underperformed. Vocations must be started with childhood, not adulthood. Now, the way things are in our society, you don’t really have much choice with this insufficient education. Here is what I’m suggesting. Rethink specialization and take a moment to reflect. Don’t you think it is pretty funny that you are doubling down on the type of training ONLY applicable to the Oil Age? You think you have no choice, to compensate for lack of vocational training, but you are also boxing yourself in by restricting the range of your activities.
I believe it is far better to be passably acquainted with many skills rather than be really good in one. Just like that quote from Robert everyone loves to use ( “specialization is for insects” ). Where I disagree with that quote is its realistic application. You only learn what returns on your investment, so most of us can only read about most outside our job activities. That is the present reality. Our only exception is our hobbies. The problem with THAT, is we are just specializing in ONE other thing. We still stay specialized! Many preppers compensate that by accumulating books, but then they are accused of not being skill proficient.
But to become skill proficient, most likely you are forced to compensate by specialization. You are back in the same place you started, except now you have one paycheck skill and one apocalypse skill. And both will eventually be antiquated. Because most likely, they are using Oil Age supplies. Are you starting to laugh at yourself, yet? I know it doesn’t seem so, and you will get all serious and testy and defensive, but think about it. Are you prepped for the die-off, or the apocalypse? I’m going to cover that tomorrow, but let’s return briefly to wider skill sets before we wrap up today.
On one hand is owning a book, and on the other is being good at a specialized skill. One is insufficient and the other is too all inclusive. I would suggest that you just try your hand at as many crafts/skills as you can. Don’t worry about getting good or great. Just become familiar. I’m of the mind that a broad approach is the only way you are going to be successful. This goes against all we’ve ever been taught or been compensated for. Continued.
END ( today's related link http://amzn.to/2gUPhGl )
* By the by, all my writing is copyrighted. For the obtuse out there
This comment is on the lead-in as I haven't read the article yet.ReplyDelete
Yes, I saw that distiller on TGV the other night and decided I am going to make one some how. In fact, I instantly saw a couple things that could be improved upon in it. They did not show the underside surface so I have to imagine what it looks like. I'm assuming there are some channels that direct the mist in a downward spiral toward the single outlet tube. Multiple smaller spirals would cause the mist to start flowing faster than say 1 or 2 large ones and less apt to drip back into the boiling element below. The inside would also have to be glazed so the moisture would not *stick* to the surface.
I have some leftover 12" wide coild stock so maybe I can make a mock-up to test my idea and improve as necessary, then take it to a local pottery place (there are lots around here) and get one made out of clay, glazed, then fired. 12" to 24" below the surface around here is dense clay everywhere so since I studied all aspects of pottery way back when in school maybe I can make my own from my own dirt.
FWIW I'm also downloading the "Victorian Farm" series (same people are in it) which are 1 hour shows as I find this stuff fascinatingly interesting. I'm on the 10th episode of GVF and have learned a lot about the old ways.
Here are the other shows I will be collecting:
Tales from the Green Valley Victorian Farm Edwardian Farm Wartime Farm Tudor Monastery Farm Secrets of the Castle
2005 2009 2011 2012 2013 2014
(I copied that from wiki so I don't know how well it will paste)
Thank you for the list-I wouldn't have thought to look that up. I'll be watching them all-stuff I've never found in books, and it restores my faith in TV. Somewhat in YouTube :)Delete
I've worked hard at becoming a generalist for pretty much my entire life. Knowing full well that I'll never Excell in any one field.ReplyDelete
Does it make my chances any better come SHTF ? Probably not , but still gotta keep cramming it in.
I don't know how much my writing makes me a specialist or how much my striving to keep expanding in the fields I write about makes me a generalist.Delete
Errr - this isn't about TribesReplyDelete
If you are referring to yesterdays comments, I thought I said I was writing on the subject today. Not posting ( sorry if I miscommunicated ). I was writing two weeks prior to publication. Got it down to a more reasonable one week by focusing more on the books.Delete
I was teasing :-PDelete
Oh, I thought it was a legit comment. I did write the first part yesterday.Delete
Very well said. Sometimes you surprise me with the stuff you write, especially when you venture off the beaten trail. You're the kind of person I'd like to have a conversation with. But the problem is an hour convo would turn into 3 days and we'd be on each others nerves and a fistfight would ensue. And that's with no liquor involved! LOLReplyDelete
Sometimes I think of it as a curse, but I don't dwell on it much. I get bored very easily and have been this way all of my life. Thinking back, public school was unbelievable torture and there is no way in hell I could deal with that sort of thing today. Same with advanced education, the military, and all 33 jobs I had before I became self employed. I always learned everything they had to offer very fast, then burned out on the endlessly boring minutia. I'm getting bored just writing about it.
Thus, all of my life I have dabbled in everything and everything that crossed my curiosity radar. I am a life long apprentice at everything and a specialist at nothing, and a perfectionist down to the slightest detail. And I tend to over analyze everything. For everything I have ever dabbled in there are 10 things I have talked myself out of. The long and the short of this is that I am able to converse with just about anyone, in depth, on hundreds, maybe thousands, of subjects. Oh yeah, I also think this character flaw (LOL) has caused me to have a photographic memory which has it's own built-in problems and benefits. I mean, information is no good if you don't have the ability to recall it instantly in detail. (I call it my mental rolodex)
Anyway, I agree with most of what you wrote in this post and found it inspiring, and it's what keeps me coming back for more.
We wouldn't get in a fistfight, I'd get bitchy and sulky and leave in a huff :)Delete
It's just been my experience that u have to be a specialist in an area before u can perfect it.Delete
I read an opinion on photographic memory which says that perhaps the ability to forget is as important as being able to rememberDelete
I volunteered some info at my new work place. An opinionated individual disputed my info & asked me how I knew said info. I replied 5 1/2 years university studying the topic, 4 years as a volunteer in the field and 18 months professional experience. They were like "WTF?" why are you working here? (blue collar, low pay low prestige).Delete
Funny story time though. Friend of mine was rendering first aid to an old lady that had collapsed at a busy train station. A bloke pushes people out of the way and said in a loud voice "Everyone get back. I'm a trained surf lifesaver I'm in charge". My mate said "F*** off I'm a cardiologist" LMAO
"Everybody get back. I'm deputy Barney Fife"Delete
540-other than advanced degrees, most jobs are easy to pick up. Then you need a LOT of experience getting good at it. Anybody can teach out of a textbook-whether you are any good...We seriously need a better apprenticeship program and less college.Delete
545-I think with photographic memory, you can recall, not saying you will choose to. I don't think you'll dredge up unwanted memories uncontrollably.
"Training is not life experience and never can be”ReplyDelete
Sgt. John Libbey (played by Don Johnson) in response to Lt. Marshall Buxton.
“There’s nothing that I can teach you about combat sir, that you won’t learn yourself within the first 5 minutes”. (Paraphrased from the movie In pursuit of Honor 1995).
With regards to distillers, the following is probably the easiest method that I have seen so far: You will need two glass bottles, such as large wine jugs or the like. Place them both on their side. One is filled with the liquid that you wish to distill, but not so much that when placed on its side, the liquid does not escape, so the liquid must be below the neck when placed on its side. Place both of them spout to spout, and seal. Cover the recipient bottle with earth, and place in sun.
Have you ever seen the Private SNAFU WW2 G.I. training videos Jim? They’re actually rather funny, and also rather adult oriented considering the time. They’re short, around 4 minutes each, and if you can get around Private SNAFU sounding like Bugs Bunny (Mel Blanc provided the voice) you will find them to be entertaining. My how times have changed. Of course at the time, you didn’t have to worry about offending any fems in the military, so no pc here. Note that there’s a huge difference between the “Technical Fairy” in these videos vs the modern version 😀
Private Snafu - A Lecture on Camouflage | 1944 | WW2 Cartoon | US Army Animated Training Film
Private Snafu - No Buddy Atoll | 1945 | US Army Animated Training Film
I saw something similar on two bottles for distillation but I don't recall the earth covering. Good idea. I like Don Johnson but never heard of that movie.Delete
It’s actually a pretty good movie Jim. And although it’s been many years since I’ve seen it, I don’t recall any pc nonsense, so I’ll give it my full endorsement.Delete
The premise is WW1. The U.S. is still using horse mounts. But as mentioned by Gen. Douglas MacArthur, “the Germans have tanks, lots of them, and very good one’s.”
I too like Don Johnson. It seems that he was one of the last actors from a generation in which it was still okay for men to act masculine. Forget about the James Bond franchise, because the pc police are going to ruin it even further (Rumor has it that the next one will be either a black dude a woman).
I haven't enjoyed James Bond for some time. They are all over Amazon Prime and I can't get through any of them ( except the one with Christopher Walken and the fugly black chick-and that was just for 80's nostalgia. And I STILL had to watch it in three parts throughout the day ). I'm pretty sure that Bond is really just a theatre experience. And I refuse to go to the theatre anymore. Grrl Power or Black Bond wouldn't make it any worse for me :)Delete
James Bond should have been retired when the last of Ian Flemmings books were made into films. They could have continued the franchise covering the other eight 00 agents (didn't need to be sequential).Delete
The best Bond movie IMHO was Goldfinger. Sometimes I sing the theme tune at work to amuse everyone.
Don't know if I have a favorite. I go back to watch what I thought were good ones and they bore me. I remember some of the songs better than the movie ( for your eyes only ). I saw all the 80's ones in the theatres and so they probably stick in my mind better.Delete
>>Can you imagine the movie being made today, as we areReplyDelete
>>expected to jingoistically salute all things martial.
Kurt Vonnegut spend a lot of time describing exactly this in his novel "Slaughthouse Five". He describes it from his perspective as a veteran who has seen some real hard things (he cleared up after the bombing of Dresden) and describes how Americans who remained at home acted so tough and no-nonsense etc. whereas the scrawny veterans and their scrawny wives tried to live a normal life.
I believe the USA are a country that has been terraformed by marketing. Most of the population is indeed completely delusional, and thus is suggestible to marketing to an extreme degree. This explains the abberant real estate markets, the bubbles, the cublicle farms, the fads, the divorce rate, keeping up with the Jones etc.
People really think that the product they buy will transfer their (advertized) magical powers to them. They also think that if they behave like soldiers do in movies, they will automatically become like them. this also pertains to Yuppie Survivalsits...)
This is some really primitive society right here, believing it is the pinnacle of human evolution, when in reality they have been endoctrinated from before they could think (starting with Disney/Pixar movies...)
Hmmm, now you got me thinking PC thought is somehow tied in with the easier acceptance of marketing. De-couple from human nature with PC, confuse everything else about reality. Or perhaps something like that.Delete
>> Many preppers compensate that by accumulating books,ReplyDelete
>> but then they are accused of not being skill proficient.
If you expect to live 20 more years, but being fit (mentally or physically) only ten, is it really worth spending five years to learn a new profession ?
I went back to university at age 28. I graduated from Business School only four years prior, but it was really hard resuming a whole new cycle of study. Now that I have a permanent medical condition, it's flat out impossible.
That said, people should do exactly what they want in life, because that's what life is all about. Sometimes you hear about an old fart who at 80 years of age finally got his driving licence. To him it matters a lot.
The useful skills I have learnt since I started in survivalism back in 2004 (at age 30) were quick to learn, but took a lot of practice to get right. These were : cartridge reloading and machine sewing. That's it, there was no time left nor patience for more than this.
Regarding the miltiary stuff, I've read lots and lots of books about it (mainly the strategic / procurement aspects) but to be honest you got to have the stuff to go out and engage in a fight. I never had this in me (although I am about the only one who gets confrontational with scum etc.). It's a collective sports thing, like soccer.
At my shooting range there are people who live for this paramilitary stuff (interstingly, none of them ever served in the army...) but don't have the patience to reload cartridges.
So it boils down to who you really are and what your aptitude's good at. (Quote from Idiocracy)
I guess it takes every kind of people to make the world go round.
One of the few things I can think of at the moment for practicing military movement/tactics is paintball. Actually, airsoft would be preferable. I know paintball costs too much. Not sure about the other. I don't have much desire for that anymore though. I'd have to be sociable. Last time I did it was with guys from work so there was no new interactions required.Delete
"...interstingly, none of them ever served in the army..."Delete
It takes on a whole nuther tone when you HAVE to do it. I'm ex-army and my gung-ho neighbor is not. He has been to every tactical course you can imagine, first aid, ham radio, and on and on. He is stymied at my lack of interest in such things. Not really lack of interest, but the knowledge that I've already done that and moved on. I can recall most of what I learned in the army when the time is necessary, but I see no need in dressing up and playing soldierboy. It's too narrow of a scope to keep my interest. Besides, I'm old now (I'm 62 and the neighbor is 48) and not the young invincible buck I was 45 years ago. Now, I have to look way ahead for obstacles and steer myself around them rather than plowing right through them as in my naive youth.
One of the things learned from the last "Tales From the Green Valley" episode was that you can put water in a small (3") glass sphere and hold it in front of a candle at night time to create a spotlight effect. The candle light sort of magnifies as it passes through the water filled sphere creating a more intense light so that you can see better at tasks like sewing, reading, and such. Got a glass sphere? Me neither but I'm going to keep my eyes peeled for some. Might come in handy in the future. Maybe a clear drinking glass will work?
I hear you on duplicating the life of a young soldier. What's so hard about it, anyway? Don't get enough sleep, use worthless equipment and be led by morons who wish you dead.Delete
Having been on the end of LRRP missions back when I was young...well, now days I recommend spot and stalk hunting with camo gear. It gives good practice for moving around in varied terrain un noticed. If you can sneak up on wild animals...then you most certainly can sneak around people with better results. Not to mention provides food occasionally too.Delete
Much better idea than mine-and pert near free.Delete
i see glass globes sold as Christmas ornaments. look for them soon. you might have to carefully drill a hole in the top. they are blown with a curl on top to put a ribbon through.
saw a show where a young fellow brought light into the huts of his people by filling liter soda bottles with water and putting them in holes in the hut roofs, like those glass things used in wooden ships in times past.
.i would like to listen to conversations among bison, ave and ghostsniper with idaho homesteader.Delete
Deborah and the others, what about a Skype of Hangouts session ?Delete
i have hears of skype but i am almost 70 and i barely know how to make a comment.Delete
feel free to explain it to me, cause it sounds good if the others would participate. we could all get a drink and listen to the conversations, wherever they may lead.
o, you of the magnificent mane, what do you think? is it possible?
bison, my email isDelete
if you will tell me if the skype will happen.
I'm not a big fan of the technological answer. I think I avoided Blogger for at least five years. Isn't Skype just free long distance calls over the internet? Wouldn't that freeze up like web sites do all the time? I don't even own a cell phone ( course, that is the money issue ). Hate phone, tolerate the Internet. Combine the two? No thanks!Delete
I am an advocate of building a wide ranging hard copy library, heavy on skill sets likely to be needed. I have done this over many years buying used books primarily (thrift shops) and new off Amazon. Blacksmithing, reloading, bike mechanics, hewing wooden troughs & bowls, fermentation, sewing, simple and advanced shoe making, carpentry, weaving, papermaking, low tech printing,leatherworking, food growing and small animal raising, beekeeping, building cistern, hand dug wells, papermaking, scythe use and care, etc. Many topics I have 2 or more books covering. Definitely not a master of any, but now have experience in many of these areas.ReplyDelete
Built a forge, kept bees for years, can turn out leather goods. If you actually do some of these things, you will be the local expert by default. Very few people in my area garden for example. Get 10 years under your belt and you're a food production Jedi compared to the masses.
On the book topic, I was recently looking at a bookshelf in my 77 year old mom's house, and she had a copy of the Bison Preparing on a Budget manual (Not sure exact title at moment, I read through and passed back to her).
S. In Fla.
A library touching on just a few topics can add up really quick, even buying used. A good thing to have of course. I think your mom sounds really smart :)Delete
A p.s. on book topic: I seem to remember Bruce Clayton in his 1980 Life After Doomsday suggesting survivalist store at least 2 college level textbooks about thsir profession to preserve knowledge for the future. He recommended wrapping in foil and protecting with a pesticide. S in FlaReplyDelete
I thought I had read Clayton more than once, and don't recall that. Oh, well, its been awhile.Delete