The Power of Impossible

When older son was four or five, one of our — childless — friends tried to chide him by telling him he was impossible. At which point son fixed her with his most pedantic stare and informed her “No. I’m merely improbable.”

He was right about that. As am I. As are a number of people here. The amount of coincidence and strangeness needed for us to exist, much less exist as we do would strain the pen of the most fantastic novelist.

However, today, in church — of all places — I was meditating on the power of being impossible. Of doing the impossible. Of saying what is not said and doing what’s not done.

No, I’m not actually talking about the resurrection, or being G-d incarnate. This being Palm Sunday we didn’t touch on those, but on the interview with Pilate. I was thinking about the sheer unmitigated impossibility of someone looking at a Roman governor, backed by the might of Rome and giving pert answers like “You say that I am.”

Later on, that utter, unmitigated gall and impossibility helped the growth of Christianity to an enormous amount because these insane people went into the arena singing, happy to die for the faith. Who does that? That’s impossible.

And don’t get me started on picking up unwanted kids and raising them, not as slaves, but as their own. Who in a highly tribal ancient world would even do that? That’s impossible, right?

Doing the impossible gets you noticed, even when — particularly when — you do it from a position of weakness, and yet you dare.

America is, in many ways, an impossible country. We are, actually, despite every attempt to make us otherwise, a functional, cohesive multi-racial nation. (No, we don’t rise to multicultural. Sighs. Guys, seriously. Yes, there are differences between our states. We’re not monolothic, but America identity still transcends all that. In fact, as an identity/base culture American is as persistent as Roman and that…. is still around in many ways, in lands the Romans never trod. There is more difference between adjacent European villages than between NY state and TX.)

And we have a way to do things to rules and mandates from above, that frankly no decent country would do. And by “decent” I mean predictable. (So I’m glad we’re not decent.) You can distort America, but you can’t control her.

No, not even the covidiocy managed it. Yeah, some places got really bad. But mostly? Bah. Spring of 2020, traveling across the midwest, we found more signs on the highway saying some small town was “Fully open for business” and “no masks” than I care to say. (And btw, the fact those towns weren’t dead means that the entire thing was crazy. And yes, of course we stopped. Do we look stupid to you?)

I suspect Europe was more easily commanded, at least from what I’ve seen, but it’s hard to tell, because their media is stupider than ours if you can imagine that.

I do know that these food shortages and things they’re expecting? Well, I don’t know about you, but all our neighbors are merrily turning lawn in to vegetable beds. (We intend to start this week. I hope I can find onion sets not sold out. I should have done it last week, but we’ve been busy.) I suspect our “overlords” are going to find their eyes spit upon when they try to put on the squeeze. It’s not just all those weapons we keep losing at the bottom of watercourses. (Seriously, guys, would you learn to canoe already? Or stop taking your guns on pleasure cruises, no matter how bored they get?) it’s that… well, we’re a tinkering people.

I won’t say other countries don’t have hobbies. I do say other countries don’t engage their hobbies like we engage our hobbies. Heck, in the seventies, when bread makers in Portugal went on strike people were baffled because they’d never made bread. (To be honest that is very Roman. Bread comes from the bakery, after all.)

Here? I know people who make cheese, beer and bread for fun. Son and daughter in law made mead. (Never figured out if it was drinkable. I don’t LIKE mead.) People can and pickle, and preserve. (I WANT to buy a freeze drying machine, but they’re spendy and I haven’t braved myself to doing it. Sigh. I’m afraid we wouldn’t use it enough to justify it. OTOH we do have nearby friends I’m sure would be happy to have a turn. Um.) I know soap makers, quilters, weavers. I know tinkerers, who can keep machines going more or less indefinitely. Younger son is working very seriously on his 3-d printing skills partly so we can keep things going if pieces are scarce.

I suspect that as we get squeezed, the impossibility that is America will come out in all sorts of odd and interesting ways. Impromptu schools, Victory gardens in every corner, new ways of doing things with what’s on hand.

I suspect it, because we’ve done it in the past. And before you say that we weren’t the same people: The spirit is still there. If you don’t see it, you are in an odd/depressed area of the country. And hey, maybe you should set the example by doing the impossible.

Do the impossible today. Say no to an authority figure. Speak the truth, when a lie is adamantly demanded. Subversively cast doubt on what everybody knows by saying “Well, sure, but maybe–“

If you can’t be impossible, be highly improbable. Totalitarianism requires widgets and predictable subjects. Refuse to be that.

Oh, they won’t let your kids go to school? Start a homeschool pod. They say there will be famines? Sure, start an edible garden (Some are even pretty.) They are making war on beef? Arrange with friends to purchase a cow to grow. They close or try to close churches again? Bah. Gather with some friends to pray.

Be polite, be clear, but do not fall in.

They try to get you into a defensive mode? Refuse to apologize. They call you names? But why should you defend yourself? Just give them the cut direct.

Being impossible is hard. Trust me on this. I’ve been impossible for years, while people kept trying to bring me back in line. (Peculiar you say? Impossible.) I ramped up the impossible by doubting the whole covidiocy, while people came over to yell at me, about being so…. impossible, and while my mom was screaming at me in panic over the phone every year. I ramped up the impossible by refusing to be black pilled. And I intend to continue not being blackpilled, btw. Yeah, it’s a depressing time and sometimes holding on to hope seems impossible.

However not being impossible — giving in, folding, behaving as they expect us to — that’s the true impossibility.

So you see, I really have no choice but to continue being impossible.

And I suspect neither do you. I mean, I think the most compliant among you are at worst — best? — highly improbable. And some of you are in the realm of impossibility of an entire universe in the flame of a match.

This is good. Again, I tell you: Totalitarianism requires predictability.

Be unpredictable. Be impossible.

Prepare, organize, work, thrive.

Refuse to let the chintzy bastages of the Junta and their fellow travelers hold you down.

Who are they to give orders to Americans? Who are they to hold us down?

We are eagles, and we were meant to soar. And we’re going to.

They ain’t seen nothing yet.

240 thoughts on “The Power of Impossible

  1. There are 23 pairs of chromosomes in the typical human cell. You get one of each of those pairs from each of your parents. There are, thus, four possibilities of combinations that you might have for one pair of chromosomes (leaving aside the gene mixing between chromosomes of a pair that can happen during meiosis). For two pairs, that’s 16 possibilities. For three pairs, 64. And so on up to 23 for which there are over 70 trillion potential people who might have existed, thousands of times more than all the people who have ever existed since the first recognizable homo sapiens walked the Earth to today. Then there are all the things beyond bare chromosomes that make us “us”, the various things that shaped and molded that basic material into a unique individual, why “identical twins” are never completely identical on all levels physical, mental, and emotional. Millions and billions of more “potential people” that could have been had those factors been somewhat different.

    And out of all that only one of each of us.

    1. Unless of course you’re an identical twin. And even then there can be differences from in utero gene activation and other surprising things, and of course environment and nurture. Amazingly identical twin females (XX, accept no substitutes) can differ as they have 2 X chromosomes. The body only activates 1 of the X chromosomes pretty much at random so its a 50/50 chance that they would actually differ in a genetic test (although only in genes from that chromosome).

      1. “Then there are all the things beyond bare chromosomes that make us “us”, the various things that shaped and molded that basic material into a unique individual, why “identical twins” are never completely identical on all levels physical, mental, and emotional.”

        1. “The genetic code does not, and cannot, specify the nature and position of every capillary in the body or every neuron in the brain. What it can do is describe the underlying fractal pattern which creates them.” — Academician Prokhor Zakharov, “Nonlinear Genetics” (Accompanies discovery of the “Gene Splicing” tech)

          1. Other than having too much micromanagement once you grow a bit – the classic bane of civ-type games – SMAC was awesome. I can’t believe it hasn’t even gotten a remaster yet.

          2. I’ve played way too much Alpha Centauri. And I still wish it ran on current computers.

      2. There are mirror image identical twins. One left handed, one right handed, who lose their baby teeth on opposite sides of their mouths on the same day. Their brains have a different dominant side. Identical, but not.

        “What do you call two people born at the same time?”

    2. I remember a Callahan’s Bar story where Callahan was mocking pro-life people because of the random nature of reproduction- more or less, “hah, every life is the result of thousand of random factors, and these people don’t see how unimportant they are.” At the time, I remember thinking, “No, that means each embryo is unique and unreproducible, which makes each one utterly precious.”
      I feel rather sorry for Spider Robinson.

      1. A quote I got from a Nightwish song, which they apparently got from Richard Dawkins. Whatever one might think of Mr. Dawkins himself, I find this rather profound:

        “We are going to die, and that makes us the lucky ones. Most people are never going to die because they are never going to be born. The potential people who could have been here in my place but who will in fact never see the light of day outnumber the sand grains of Arabia. Certainly those unborn ghosts include greater poets than Keats, scientists greater than Newton. We know this because the set of possible people allowed by our DNA so massively exceeds the set of actual people. In the teeth of these stupefying odds it is you and I, in our ordinariness, that are here.We privileged few, who won the lottery of birth against all odds, how dare we whine at our inevitable return to that prior state from which the vast majority have never stirred?”

        1. Love that quote and the album it comes from. I saw Nightwish on that tour, and they put on a hell of a show. They closed with Endless Forms Most Beautiful, and the whole audience was singing “We were here!” together with Floor Jansen…talk about ending on a high. Goosebumps.

      2. Didn’t see this when I made my comment above, but yes, I don’t see how doing the math lowers the value of every fetus instead of increasing it.

    3. As odd as it may seem thinking about this as an odd thought off the changes of a 32-bit flat address space compared to a 16-bit one was the beginning of the end for my mostly pro-choice stance.

  2. Yes, there are differences between our states. We’re not monolothic, but America identity still transcends all that.

    I point out (often in a context of someone saying that since the Nazis fought the Communists that they must have been political opposites) that during the Civil War the Union and the Confederacy had more in common with each other than with any of the nations in Europe. In the current context, even when we were shooting at each other, we were still more similar than different.

    1. “someone saying that since the Nazis fought the Communists that they must have been political opposites”

      And my usual response is “only if you think the Bloods and the Crips are political parties”.

      1. … and even then, far more in common than not. The National Socialists, International Socialists, Fascists, and Communists fought over who would be the ones to run things. Not major differences in policy. Bloods and Crips is like Democrats and Greens.

      2. It is amazing what they will claim.

        Remember the argument Russia is making for Ukrainian genocide.

        1. The guy in Ukraine had a poll asking if Nationalist and Nazi were the same, and also some other questions to his Russian followers. Turn on CC and he has english translations. SMH over some of the truly stupid replies he’s been getting. Also, his shop got bombed recently.

      3. Add the Latin Kings and you get the political factions in Chicago. It’s been run by the gangs for a while now.

      4. So, which was the Imperial, Monarchist side of the First World War?

        Only two of the eight major powers in that war were Republics after all.

          1. I’m well aware of that. It’s called an analogy.

            I was making the point that both sides had the same political system so “major war = different political system” is a non-starter.

    2. Nazis (socialists) and Communists are only different because Lenin decided they were different. Lenin needed the useful idiots in the west to support his cause so he had to find an arch enemy.

      1. I don’t believe Lenin had much to say about Nazis, as he died about a decade before the Nazis came to power.

        Stalin decided that Nazis and Communists were different because the Hitler backstabbed him before he could backstab Hitler. At that point he and his minions claimed “We have always been archenemies of the Nazis” and set up the biggest fraud of the 20th century – making it the conventional wisdom that Nazis and Communists were completely totally 100% absolutely political opposites.


        The relative ease with which a young communist could be converted into a Nazi or vice versa was well known, best of all to the propagandists of the two parties. The communists and Nazis clashed more frequently with each other than with other parties simply because they competed for the same type of mind and reserved for each other the hatred of the heretic. Their practice showed how closely they are related. To both, the real enemy, the man with whom they had nothing in common, was the liberal of the old type. While to the Nazi the communist and to the communist the Nazi, and to both the socialist, are potential recruits made of the right timber, they both know that there can be no compromise between them and those who really believe in individual freedom.

        FA Hayek, The Road to Serfdom

        1. The Nazi’s no, but other socialists yes. Who and whom is all that bloody psychopath ever understood.

      2. Actually, not quite. National Socialists were nationalist/socialist. Communists are globalist/socialist/revolutionary. Which is why you shoot the commissar twice, then pistol-whip the gauleiter.

        1. And yet, both sought global domination. The Nationalist/Globalist divide was purely one of labeling, with little meaning in reality. As Sowell is wont to quote Oliver Wendall Holmes: “Think ‘things’ not ‘words.'” The “things” were much the same regardless of the different words applied to them.

          1. The difference between the Nazis and Soviet communists was that Nazis wanted global German socialist totalitarian rule and the Soviets wanted global Russian socialist totalitarian rule. Period. The end.

      3. Just think of them as the two orcs that Frodo and Sam encounter shortly after they escape Cirith Ungol and enter Mordor proper. As they are hiding, they watch the two orcs argue until one kills the other. Sam expresses hope that such spirit will spread to all of Mordor. Frodo notes that it IS the spirit of Mordor, and that the two orcs would havedropped the argument had they seen Frodo and Sam in order to kill them.

        1. Good old Shagrat and Gorbag, reminiscing about the Old Days, recalling events 3,000 years in the past.

    3. Indeed, The most violent disagreements are within the same group trying to expel heretical beliefs. Witness the 30 years war, the Sunni vs Shia (and the poor Sufi…). To some degree the competition in the Abrahamic faiths is the same kind of thing. The various flavors of socialism with slightly varying views economics see each other as competition and so went/go at it with a passion.

    4. This is why they work so diligently to PACK blue schools with ‘teachers’ who hate America.

    5. I’m starting to wonder if the differences between states now are wider and more profound than in 1861.

      New Jersey requires second graders to have instruction on gender identity. Florida now bans it. Multiply that times every possible social issue.

      As profound as the slavery issue was, as Lincoln said, both sides prayed to the same God. Now we have sides that don’t even believe in Gods and their prophets are Marx and his progeny (although they will not admit them as prophets despite using them in arguments as that very thing).

  3. I saw a note recently that the only people who are down on America are Americans, dictators, and socialists. Everyone else is trying to figure out how to come here.

        1. TWAMLOC is Those Who Are No Longer Our Contrymen. I presume AINO is American In Name Only. So AINO ~= TWANLOC

  4. We were on the road in 2020, mostly in the Midwest because that was where the projects were (volunteer maintenance of things like church camps). We hung out more around camps between projects because the usual amusements (street festivals, fairs, museums and the like) were closed, but we still had fun. One highpoint of the trip was iscovering Hershieser’s corporate headquarters and outlet store and spending two hours shopping among the craft supplies. Yes, we had to wear masks here and there, but there was very little hysteria.
    Last year we went farther afield, and mostly found the same things. The only place that was still full-bore covidiocy was, sadly, the fiber festival and even there it wasn’t hard to find dissidents.
    BTW, whether it will gain steam or not is a good question, but there are starting to be comments on the theme of, “Have you noticed almost all of the crazy is being pushed by single, white, upper-middle class women?” Himself knows where that’s going to go.

    1. Hmm, that might explain just why Flyover County isn’t bat-guano crazy, and never got the full effects of covidiocy. The basis economy just isn’t there for the single, white, upper-mid+ women in this mostly rural, somewhat post-industrial county. Part of that was the shift away from wooden box maanufacturing, and the rest due to Spotted Owl hysteria and the rocky state of home building. The city and county never made the transitions to high-tech, financial, or government services.

      West of the Cascades, the overall economic base was split between manufacturing and the other segments. Some mills are open, but while the Karen-friendly careers aren’t present here, they are Westside.

      Other than some special cases during the height of Lockdown Theater the push towards Covid virtue signalling in our county has been pretty much from medical, and what little I remember of my ER visit last year, nobody offered nor bugged me about a mask. Vague (very–pain screws up my observation skills) memory indicates that a lot of the staff was barefaced, this being late February, 2021. I was asked to cover my nose twice in medical situations, but the only non-medical case was from a worker-bee at Costco, and only once.

      Now that Despicable Kate figured out that the mask mandate was going to kill Dem votes (there must be some honest elections in the state. Somewhere. Maybe), mask usage in Flyover County seems to be at 5% outside of medical situations. OTOH, some dental practices see the requirements as silly.. I haven’t been west since January and won’t go until July, so we’ll see how things are going then.

      1. Some honest elections in the state

        Portland Metro, down I-5 through Eugene counties, and a few smattering of others, I think there are honest county elections. Just for State wide purposes the cheaters overwhelm the honest ones. At least I hope there is. Because maybe, just maybe, Oregon can get a house and senate that can nullify the rest of Brown’s government, and maybe the next. OTOH that’ll just trigger a quorum fight that is happening now.

    2. I spent all last Saturday and Sunday, sitting under a tree by the Museum of Texas Hand-Made Furniture, on the grounds of Heritage Village, run by the Heritage Society of New Braunfels; a wooded glade on the outskirts of town, where they have moved in a number of historic buildings. It was the spring was their Folkfest, with all kinds of reenactor groups, educational activities and displays, live music, farm animals, a pair of camels, and local crafters. It was a wonderful weekend, chock-full of families having fun, and not a mask in sight. A good few of my books are deal with the local history of the Hill Country … and it was such a marvelous, beautifully ordinary event. A parade of kids in costumes on Saturday, a hay-ride, a guy with a 1913 Model T Ford giving rides around the circuit, a couple of local dance groups and choirs. a charro equestrian group, and the Boy Scouts serving up a pancake breakfast. These kinds of events are precious to the towns and the people who put them on. The children’s costume parade has been a yearly event for more than a century and a half. We will endure.

  5. The left has become so wrapped up in their own self-proclaimed cleverness that they’ve forgotten how to truly innovate. They simply rehash, redo, and call it new. They have no answers that they’ve thought of themselves. They are truly legends in their own minds. That’s our strength – laughing at them and ourselves while we work over, under, and around the obstacles they believe are insurmountable.

  6. We are Americans. No one understands us, which makes us laugh.

    When we go to rallies we chant, naturally, “USA! USA! USA!” Not “Texas! Alabama! Indiana!” It’s ALWAYS “USA!”

    We do this without anyone telling us we have to, without anyone telling us how to do it.

    We are Americans. We thrive.

    And I love Sarah-posts first thing in the morning. Pumps me up.

        1. LOL! Yes, good point. There are certain intercity and interstate sports rivalries that are semi-serious, and a few mostly good-natured rivalries over food. But by-and-large, America is America, and Americans are Americans (TWANLOC aside).

          1. Regional rivalries are subsumed into sports rivalries as a safe outlet.
            That’s not a bad thing.

            1. It’s been theorized that Glasgow is not Belfast despite a similar ethno-religious divide because a) both tribes were together in the labor unions, and b) Celtic vs. Rangers as an outlet for the sectarianism.

          1. Which went over the top when that unmitigated #$%!! poisoned the trees on Toomer’s Corner.
            Except…..the Albama ag dept did its best to help save the tress; they failed, but they were involved. And when the tornadoes ripped through Tuscaloosa in 2013, Auburn held relief drives. (I stumbled upon one of them in my area).
            So, I guess we just don’t do sectarian strife very well.

            1. Oh, the other cold, depressing provincial city up north. Although I think it was LA that beat a fan of opposing team near to death

            2. I rooted for the Mets …. once. “…. And The ball gets through Buckner! Knight will score and the Mets win it!” I do wish that San Francisco would give our team back, we could give them the Mets as a trade; not LA, they can keep the Dodgers, my grandfather was purported to be the only Yankee fan in the borough of Brooklyn.

      1. Niche markets abound in sports.
        I think I’d have been killed (I’m a U of South Carolina Gamecock) if I’d shown support for Clemson.

        1. Heck we Beaver’s can even live in Eugene! Wear Beaver logo hats, jackets, drive vehicles with Beaver on our plate rims (put decals on the vehicle, don’t be crude). Even, I 100% did this, use the Beaver Logo (OSU) gets a percentage of all charges, *CC, to pay tuition and books in Duck (UofO) central. 😉 Grew up a Beaver (dad went there for a year). Went to OSU. Been back now for 37 years. Still a Beaver.

          Don’t now. I want the money refund. But back when that was the option … Why not?

          1. Beaver? All good. Honorable opponents for the UW, and fun people.

            The Ducks? Heathens.

  7. The German words möglich and unmöglich (possible and impossible) are a binary choice for a serf mentality. Can or can’t, will or won’t, always cast in a pessimistic, negative tones. The American tradition, grounded in free will and independence, doesn’t like to take ‘no’ for an answer. When I look upon the Bidens, the Trudeaus, the Pelosis, the Macrons, and other one-world placeholders, I see Erich Honecker, the last East German (DDR) party boss. They are all sad, joyless, vacant people who stand for nothing except for their hold on power, control, and privilege.

  8. We talk about the Left, the Marxists, the Socialists, the Communists, the Progressives. We talk about the Democrat Party being a front for them. We talk about how this country has gone to Hell in a hand basket. Some of us attribute this to incompetence and ignorance on their part. But I’m not so sure.

    Perhaps it was a mistake to be re-reading RAHs short story, “Lost Legacy.” But several passages seem to resonate with our current situation in this country. Notably the one that reads as follows:

    “We came down from Shasta thinking that all we had to overcomes was stupidity, ignorance, and a normal amount of human contrariness and cussedness. Now we know better. Any attempt to place the essentials of the ancient knowledge in the hands of the common people is met by a determined, organized effort to prevent it, and to destroy, or disable the one who tries it.”

    Does that pretty accurately summarize what the opposition is doing to human freedoms in this country, and the world?

  9. “Europe… their media is stupider than ours if you can imagine that.”

    No I can’t imagine that, for any media to be stupider than ours is quite impossible.

    1. No I can’t imagine that, for any media to be stupider than ours is quite impossible.

      As improbable as it seems, it is possible.

      Even true. There are lower IQs on the planet than the mid-wits in the American media.

      1. The European media must have some towering intellects. It takes great skill to be that stupid. Every once and a while the doublethink overwhelms our media types and they speak the truth out loud. Then they lie about having said it like a cat trying to cover up barf on a tile surface…

        1. by and large, I find the European press more honest than the US press. They, at least, don’t pretend to be up unbiased. You can tell who’s who by what paper they read, there’s LeMonde and Figaro, The Grauniad and the Telegraph. yes Minister captured it, as they so often did.

          Don’t tell me about the press. I know exactly who reads the papers. The Daily Mirror is read by people who think they run the country; The Guardian is read by people who think they ought to run the country; The Times is read by the people who actually do run the country; the Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country; the Financial Times is read by people who own the country; the Morning Star is read by people who think the country ought to be run by another country, and the Daily Telegraph is read by people who think it is.

          Prime Minister, what about the people who read The Sun?

          Sun readers don’t care who runs the country, as long as she’s got big t-ts.

    2. They can be stupider. I think ours has the edge on deliberate malpractice in the service of Creating a Brighter Tomorrow.

      1. To phrase something that is usually put more politically correct. “Nothing is stupid proof. Because stupid will figure out how to be stupider.” (“Noting is user proof because users are ingenious.”)

        1. “I can make it fool proof. But not flaming idiot proof.” Attributed to any number of weapons/machine makers since the first thing with moving parts was invented.

          1. There is is idiot resistant. There is flaming idiot resistant. There is even soldier resistant engineering.

            But nothing, not one thing under Heaven, is made redneck resistant. Believe me in this, oh gentle readers, and do not attempt to Try This At Home. There is no redneck resistant engineering. One should not even try to design such a thing. Lest we thereby create a more clever redneck.

            And the world does not need that, with all the troubles we have. Not at all.

            1. If you ever want to drop down a rabbit hole of hilarity, do a search on ‘Redneck invention’.

              The Redneck Chandelier is still one of my favorites: two drop lights duct taped to a coat hanger.

              1. Friend, I live in that rabbit hole. My little corner of Appalachia may be nothing more than a stray ink blot on a map, but redneck engineering has been a part of my life since I was born.

                I’ve seen and done a lot of stupid things like that over the years. Before magnetic lights became common, duct taping a drop light with a broken hook to a coat hanger was just something you did to get the job done. I’ve seen chicken powered machines, bastardized vehicles with no major automobile manufacturer in their metal genes, boats made of literal trash that somehow managed to float reliably, cow bladder hot air balloons, kitchen appliances repurposed from the junkyard, homes constructed of zero wood or steel, and more.

                You can say many things about the redneck that are true. That he is often times too desirous of imbibing various fermented beverages. That he is inclined to song whether intoxicated or sober, no matter his actual talent or ability to carry a tune if it had handles. That he is given to dubious judgement on the quality and character of the females he chooses to lay with. That his education upon the higher subjects of learning is often lacking. That his adherence to local and state laws is highly situational. That his fashion sense is regrettable, at best.

                But one thing you cannot accuse him of with much accuracy is a lack of creativity.

        2. “Every time you think you’ve made something foolproof, some damn fool comes along and proves you wrong.”

          This does not require any particular aptitude from the fools or idiots, merely the operation of the Infinite Number Of Monkeys Principle. Eventually, one of them will do something stupider than you could have ever imagined.

          1. Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning. Rick Cook

            1. This is the more polite version … From Mary:

              Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning. Rick Cook

  10. What you call impossible sounds suspiciously like ungovernable. And that’s a very good thing.
    Who could expect that the way to fight tyranny is to be free?

  11. My garden area is still full of snow so I have time to plan yet. I have ordered mushroom spawn at least so I know I am doing that for sure. I have been going in a “food forest” direction for gardening in the last couple of years as it requires less upkeep and that is important for my current health situation. Also, it doesn’t look a whole lot different than regular landscaping unless you know what you are looking at so I can fly under the radar so to speak. But it is very early here for gardening and there is nothing in the garden centers so I can’t know just yet what I will find for a price I can pay for the fruit trees and shrubberies. I do have my saved seeds for the annuals though.

    I did purchase a dehydrator (not freeze dryer -too spendy) and a vacuum sealer to help with the food preservation aspect. I have also done a lot of canning in the past but canning is very, very labor intensive with heavy lifting and so probably not going to be a big part of what I do now. I just don’t have it in me these days. But if I need to, I certainly still know how and can teach any willing helpers I might be able to scrounge up.

    I do make my own kombucha, wine, Kimchi, sauerkraut and vinegars and those have been fun little science projects over the winter.

    It is most improbable that I have drifted toward a Suzy Homemaker type existence in my old age. But here we are.

    1. Problem with canning is not only the labor intensity, but the sealing materials, have to be regularly replaced. That can be a problem. If not done 100% correctly there are possible of bad consequences.

    2. The farm and ranch store has the Harvest Right freeze dryer, but they’re not only spendy ($2600 for the smallest one), but they’re also fairly large, especially with the outboard vacuum pump. Finding room in a medium sized house would be interesting.

      Back in the 1990s I had the large Nesco dehydrator. It didn’t make the move to Oregon, but we now have the small Nesco and use it to dry tomatoes. One temptation is to use too many trays. I had about a dozen for the large Nesco, while 8 was really practical. We have 6 for the small one. A full load of tomatoes takes us about 24 hours. I’ve seen other dehydrator brands for sale, but really like the Nesco. We got a vacuum sealer, and will try that for storage of dried goodies.

      We grow tomatoes in a 12 x 18′ greenhouse (hoop-style, originally used polyethylene, but the non-UV stuff died in September. Now it has polycarbonate Sun-tough plastic from Home Depot.

      Outdoors, we have 6 raised beds, generally for summer squash. I can’t eat high vitamin K foods, and critters will go after tender greens, but squash started inside until the stalks get spiny will keep critters off.

      I need to do soil. Have Supersoil and steer manure, and a good sized pile of fairly clean dirt. Will do a 1:1:1 mix for the greenhouse pots, and will replace some of the old mix in the outdoor beds. I had to remove raised beds from the greenhouse due to thirsty pines, and might have to repeat for the outdoor beds. Next year.

      I’m doing a large fenced yard “for the dog run”, though next year it should be a chicken yard for a half-dozen layers. I hope. Will have to come up with a predator-resistant chicken house, which I’ll probably build.

    3. food forest

      Hmm… Haven’t heard that term before, but I’m guessing it mean food crops that can grow and spread without much help from humans?

      I basically live on a pile of rocks with occasional bits of dirt on it, and I’m still trying to figure out how the trees around here grow. But if anybody knows of edible plants that can thrive independently in that environment I’d be interested in hearing about it.

      1. I’m not sure where you live. A lot is going to depend on the climate. Everything depends on water, sun and soil, as well as temperatures. Rocks will absorb heat more than soil, so you may have microclimates that are warmer or cooler. If you have sufficient water almost anything will grow, even in shallow, poor soil.

        Sunchokes/Jerusalem Artichoke. Amaranth. Sage. Tarragon. Garlic. Probably rosemary and thyme. Walking onions. Potatoes if there’s enough water. I know that sounds like a lot of seasonings, but they’re pretty hardy.

        Think about things that seed a lot, like the brassicas. I have oats and spinach naturalized in my dry garden, they come up every spring and gleefully spread their seed around, even growing out of cracks in the sidewalk. Sunchokes seem to have no natural enemies except gophers. They absolutely thrive where there’s little water. You eat the root. Garlic is planted in the fall, overwinters and is harvested in the spring, but if you leave some in the ground you’ll have a perennial crop.

        Amaranth or quinoa seeds copiously but it’s related to pigweed so if you have both you’ll probably end up with a hybrid. Still edible, though. Lettuce is another that goes to seed and pops back reliably in the spring. Lots of greens will do that. Grapes don’t require water once they’re established but I’m not sure how they would do with their roots squeezed.

        Consider mushrooms. That’s enough to start with, anyway.

        1. Remember supply chains. If you are thinking of the future, you want things where your harvest includes next year’s seeds. And ideally, no fertilizer.

          1. Make your own “fertilizer,” or work now to improve the soil to where none is needed. Microbes MAKE fertilizer if you get the microherd healthy and keep it that way. Look into JADAM (Korean Natural Farming simplified for third world countries). Doesn’t scale, but works perfectly at Victory garden scale.

        2. Sage. Tarragon. Garlic. Probably rosemary and thyme

          …Am I the only one suddenly hearing “Scarborough Fair” in my head?

          Anyway, thanks for the info.

        1. That’s pretty much how we do it, though we have to contend with frost any time in the growing season and a few hard freezes in June. We’ll water once or twice a day, depending on conditions. (Tomatoes in the greenhouse and summer squash outside. Ground squirrels and rabbits will go after less self-defensive plants outdoors. Greens work well in the ‘house. OTOH, not many home grown greens are on my “OK to eat” list. Sigh. FWIW, I do a 1″ hole in the middle of a ~17 gallon muck bucket and grow a few tomato plants in each pot. Farm and Ranch store for those, though I’ve seen them sold for picnics and parties.

          A plateau near us has a lot of rocks at the surface, but grasses grow well in between the rocks. Local grasses do well (sort of) with very little water. Grains and greens would work.

          At least one family in the area has a “greenhouse” dug into the ground. Boulders and other big rocks provide thermal mass, while the covering is transparent. Haven’t seen it personally, but the video was impressive.

      2. This guy:

        Basically, you grow food producing plants together as though they were a natural forest, so you have your over-story plants, and your under-story plants, and your ground covers.

        He’s in Florida, so you’ll have to experiment on your own to find plants that work for your climate.

  12. The crack-up may be closer than we think. Russia defaulted on two US dollar denominated bonds by offering to pay in rubles.

    1. If I understood it correctly, the Russian dollar accounts in the West were frozen, so the only choice they had (barring doing something improbable with the Ukraine adventure) was to offer in rubles, or gold.

      1. You’re correct. I don’t think that the government types really though this through, shocking I know. Russia actually doesn’t have all that much external US dollar debt … comparatively, Still, a default is a default. US doesn’t really have that much of it. Germany now … The Germans have a lot of it, which is why the Germans are hemming and hawing and all the rest.

        1. Plus Shanghai. I see the market dropped today, allegedly on concerns about Shanghai.

          1. Commodity prices too. The futures are starting to discount what’s essentially famine in China.

  13. Hum, hum hum, hum. I looked into buying a Harvest Right freeze dryer a month or so ago. Even though it is costly I was seriously considering it but the five hundred dollar shipping cost to here in Alaska turned me off. Guess I’ll have to stick to squaw candy (Air dried salmon strips) for my long term fish storage.

    I will bite the bullet and pick up a heavy duty rototiller before summer hits, also, if I can fine one (Oddly their availability in the market place seems rather sparse now.) a single bottom plow for my Kubota tractor.

    Mostly I’ve/we’ve everything we need when the fit hits the shan but I think it’s time to convert any spare dollars to physical goods before they become wort even less.

    Meanwhile, keep your powder dry and your sourdough starter wet.

  14. Unfortunately, victory gardens er al tend to require land, which fewer and fewer people are able to acquire and a vanishingly small number of young people even consider owning land/owning a house as a possibility.

    These innovations also tend to require property to work with, and as we all know, we’ll soon own nothing and be happy.

    Even the fastest and strongest fish can do naught but flop and die once you’ve drained away the water.

    1. Even a flopping fish can be dangerous, there is a reason people use fish bats on bigger toothier species (e.g. sharks) Even a full size Blue Fish can take a chunk of a finger if you’re not careful…

      1. Very few people understand the power of demographic distributions. Wealth, home ownership, birth rates, junk food consumption, and especially crime. Now, the Soros DA crowd hasn’t helped but the number of young men in the relevant age groups is almost certainly the driver of increased crime. Same thing happened in the seventies, which was the last time we had a similar distribution.

        1. I suspect the problem is largely that folks who own their house are kinda invisible, while the kids who rent are highly visible.

          1. There are more kids, well young adults, now too. The current young adult age cohort is bigger absolutely, though not proportionately, than the baby boom was.

            I think that’s a big part of why we seem to be rerunning the seventies, as farce.

        2. I don’t believe so. The Freaknomics thesis that the trouble makers had been aborted irks me. I won’t claim not to be a trouble maker, but being an unwanted child does not make you a criminal.

          1. The thesis irks me too believing, as I do, that abortion is an abomination. I agree that being wanted or unwanted does not lead to crime. That was bad analysis as it’s not even clear that it was abortion that drove the rates down, the working of the biological cycle and level of fertile women would do it as well, That said, the level of violent crime is very highly tied to the number and proportion of males in the appropriate age cohorts. We had a lot of young men in the seventies and se have a lot of them now.

            if it makes you feel better, Clinton’s happy economic time had very little to do with him and much to do with demographics. Obama was unlucky in that respect, Trump, lucky. Biden shows that a sufficiently developed stupidity can screw even that up since the US economy should be booming in real terms.

          2. It’s unsound. You can commit crimes throughout decades, and it was exactly the cohorts that would have shown the abortion effect that didn’t show the decline. The older cohorts declined very rapidly, the younger only when the worst were doing hard time.

    2. I have a smallish yard, but I do try to make the most of it. Most “crops” for personal use don’t require a large amount of space. Lettuce greens and herbs amongst the flowers provide a source of nutrients and minerals and they are dead easy to grow. Also fruit shrubs instead of something not edible around the foundation, easy, and takes up no more space than a regular decorative non-edible one. The enterprising person can also grow a surprising amount of food on a balcony.

      You don’t have to have a homestead with grains and livestock to make a big difference in how much fresh food you can create for yourself.

      It’s like the lie that only professionals can teach and you can learn best in a formal educational school setting. Food growing is something everyone can do at some level. Do what you can where you are. One fresh salad a day if that is all you have room to grow is huge from a nutrition standpoint. Get a mushroom kit and grow your own vitamin D. Herbs on the window sill, whatever. If nothing else it frees up the store stuff for people who don’t have this option.

      1. “Garden Walls” are a thing. Bonus, no weeds. Tomatoes hanging, planted upside down, is doable. (Might be watching a bit much of the HGTV instead of news …)

        1. I’ve done upside-down tomatoes. A couple things to note.

          Choose cherry or dwarf varieties. A fully loaded, full sized tomato bush is HEAVY. I’ve had three fall, one from simple weight, one because the fastener wasn’t strong enough, one because the basket itself broke. Those things they call tomato hangars are NOT strong enough.

          Remember that the tomato is being watered from the top. Not only will this add to the weight, but the tomato will dry out much faster than you might imagine.

          Fruit is also heavy. If not supported, branches will break. They will reach for the sun, resulting (again) in breakage.

          That being said, I got an amazing harvest from these until they came crashing down.

        2. Well I just accidentally discovered “root pouches” and I’ve gone insane with ideas for planting my apartment deck. And using them in the soap business, the teeny tiny ones.

          1. I definitely can’t say our ground isn’t “crop” worthy. Until the development went in, it was bean, strawberry, corn, etc., farmland. We just “lost” one of the remaining River Road Farms and Farm Stand last summer, none of the children and grandchildren wanted to run it. All the kids and grandchildren worked it while the grandparents ran it. I don’t know if the grandparents retired or alternative. It sat fallow and shutdown all of 2021. I do know that farm and the one remaining one fought off one of the local gravel mining companies from mining the fallow farmland between them (all properties sit between River Road and Willamette River, so not only prime farmland, but prime grave and dirt mining).

            Used to have a lot of UPick Beans and Strawberry farms. Most of those have gone to Blueberry Farming with UPick available.

            Back to our property. Our problem is size. Although we are bigger than newer development lots, based on mom’s experience with her garden (same size yard), short of committing entire yard, even then iffy, can’t put in anything in large enough swath to get any production; tomatoes, cucumbers, and zucchini, exempted (which no one else in the family even like). Instead we get plenty of excess from hubby’s buddies. (Yes, I know. Bad to bet on.) Other side? We hate canned. I need to look at some of the *dehydrators everyone is listing (maybe). We had one for years. But it was huge. I rarely had good results that kept well (tasted good, but didn’t store).

            Under the “I’m not working. We aren’t getting any babies. Why don’t I: Knit/Crochet (we don’t wear knit. **). Quilt (How many do we need. **). Sew, Embroidery, Cross Stitch, Macrame … **. Plus might as well as dehydrate food for our camping, backpacking, trips … Oh, and except for dehydrated Apples, I don’t even like most dehydrated food.

            ** How much can I give away? What? Sell it? Then it is production WORK, the hourly pay is crappy. Let me put it this way. Once I got into computers, everything on that list went on the wayside. I haven’t even started doing one project since I retired, 6 years ago.

            1. I’ve been buying my flowers from smaller vendors, except two of the stands where I have gotten a lot haven’t opened yet. Puzzling. One has stacks of dirt in bags, and plants in the greenhouse. The other is less promising.

            2. I really enjoy reading your longer posts.

              I’ll pray for energy for any projects that might be bubbling up in your imagination.

            3. You don’t need to do it regularly, just learn how, just in case. I’ve learned to make all sorts of things that I don’t normally bother with (beer and cheese come to mind, but home-made toaster pastries? YUM!).
              If the cost of labor is included, unless one makes something startlingly interesting and well crafted, one will never make money “crafting”. Knitting and crochet take a lot of time. There isn’t much market for $500 sweaters or $50 hats. Home-made socks are incredibly expensive and bumpy, but better than barefoot in boots; nominally, I buy 12 packs of gym socks at Fleet Farm.
              But, a cupboard full of yarn (or a couple of packets of beer yeast and cheese bacteria in the freezer) doesn’t cost much at all and may be handy.

              1. I have three grape vines growing over trellises in the back yard, and this year it looks like they are going to be simply covered with grape bunches … I think I will be getting out the wine-making buckets and gear, and making a lot of wine…

              2. I follow another author, more like series: Change. Given where I live (reason I picked up the first book). One question that has been put forth has been: “Where are you in March 1998?”, the critical time, “With Author Thumb on scale, where do you go? What shills do you bring? Who do you drag with you?”

                Note, for reasons, do not head North to one of the two options where the group is detailed in the books. But south because of the Applegate connection. Staying put is not an option, long term. Get out of town (sneak out) first couple of weeks is the key to survival.

                What skills? I can make clothing. Don’t know how to process and make new material. But wouldn’t surprise me if grandma knows, given where she grew up (where we would headed, and they were still alive in 1998). I’ve got the books. I have the tools. We even have the hand wood making small tools curtsy of hubby’s great grandfather. He knows how to use them. Doesn’t use them, but knows how (thanks to his father). Making spinning wheels and other tools is an option. Food? Grandparents kept open range chickens. They kept a garden. Grandma cans (also horded the materials). I learned how to make bread from both grandmothers (prefer a bread machine for the mixing and kneading, but I know how to do it by hand too). Grandparents and my parents know how to process wild game and livestock (surprising number of people don’t, even if they know their meat doesn’t magically show up at the grocery store or butcher).

                So, yes have taken into consideration that at least I know the skill sets if not practiced. Bonus, above skill sets do not atrophy.

                Granted other than the skill sets, none of the above applies now. Grandparents are gone. Property is sold. Dad is gone, so while extended family connection still there, mom might know who is who, but beyond that …

            4. RIP Lone Pine.

              At least it’s an ag-related group that picked it up (trees grown for corporate builds, I guess. Non-fruit trees, at the very least.)

              1. 🙂

                So, you must be local? Yes. Lone Pine. At least the remaining one does fantastic berry pies (not that we need to eat those). I do miss watching the goats.

                Glad ag entity picked up the property.

    3. There are a lot of “food plants in a planter” and “hanging food plant tubes with holes along them” gardens for small spaces. Security is a problem, of course.

    4. Thresher sharks taken out of the water can do A LOT of damage. There is a reason many fishing boats have guns on them capable of shooting such sharks as a last resort.

      1. Mom & dad had a pistol on their salmon boat when fishing off the Oregon Coast. They had lines out. Generally when they got a shark on, it was hooked but good. Generally great white too. There they practiced SCS, let the local Orcas, wolves of the seas, clean up. (SCS – Shoot, Cut loose, Shut up.) At least that is what they were told to do. They were lucky, or didn’t fish long enough, to have to deal with this situation, but they were prepared for it.

        1. My shotgun (Mossburg 590, stainless steel) started life on a fishing boat. It was designed for, they tell me, sea lions.

          Get a tarpon in the boat, get a cobia in the boat, and you’d better beat them dead or get them in the live well. Quick.

          1. I know some commercial fisherman who fish out of NJ. Bringing big fish on to the boat is dangerous. Very dangerous work.

            1. There’s a reason those gaff-handles are loooooong. Tail fins are sharp.
              I think until you’re in a boat and there’s a great strong fish like a tuna trying not to die about ten feet from where you’re standing that gives you the real feel.

          2. Shooting Sea Lions off the Oregon Coast is SGTHODS (Shoot, Get-The-Heck-Out-of-Dodge, Shut up). Worse than sharks. It is very much illegal. Heck even harassing them off the boat, should they choose to honor your resting/safety (fleeing sharks or Killer Whales) platform, is illegal. They saw a lot of partial salmon come up on their lines. They salmon commercial fished, seasonal, 2 person boat, a little over 20 years before taking the bailout (mid-’90s-ish), selling the boat with commercial equipment stripped. Mom still has the equipment stored. It’ll be our (sisters and mine) joy to dispose of it when the time comes. (Oh. Bleeping Joy.) Hubby’s brother might be a source of knowing someone who can salvage some of it. They are part of the coastal crabbing and fishing scene. But mom won’t just give it away. I will. Not a problem.

            Sisters and I finally convinced mom to pare down all dad’s normal fishing stuff. Sisters families don’t fish. Hubby got all HIS dad’s stuff (we have more fishing gear than we know what to do with). Wouldn’t surprise me if we end up with his brother’s gear too (oh joy, again). Although, hopefully it’ll go to his son and step-son (his son, if BIL isn’t around to complain … they are not on speaking terms). Dad’s gear went to mom’s younger brother and two of his sons. All fisherman. They were thrilled to get it (better gear than they can afford to purchase).

            1. Oh, Lordy, I don’t envy you that task. But you surely get the environment. These guys were fishing out of NW WA and Alaska, and you have to be very, very circumspect. These days, other fishermen will turn you in.

              I’m envious of all your Dad’s fishing gear. That kind of joy is magnificent. And if you’ve ever priced a tuna rod? And the reel? Yow.

    5. It doesn’t really help that suburban developers are putting larger houses on smaller lots either, but there are ways and means to grow even in tiny dwellings.

      1. In some places it’s the only way to make money: tie up the money in expensive land, and only a valuable house will recoup it.

  15. I strive to be infinitely improbable. When I go, I want to be lynched by a rampaging mob of respectable physicists for being a smartass.

        1. Then I’ll just have to make another one. Granted, doing so would be highly improbable, but that means that it’s also finitely probab – wait, why does this line of thinking sound familiar?

  16. Seriously, guys, would you learn to canoe already? Or stop taking your guns on pleasure cruises, no matter how bored they get?

    How else can we keep the local scuba rescuers in practice? I mean, really now, can’t use pets or people.


    Note. Seriously. I don’t even like boats. Game & Fish rules state chumming our local ponds, lakes, rivers, and coastal waters, is illegal, fishing or not. I get seasick on the dang dock, just early symptoms, rest of it reserved for when boat is underway. The medical remedies make me sleepy. (NOT being sarcastic.)

  17. I’m impossible even (or especially) when I’m trying to be helpful.

    I tend to stop listening once I think I have the gist, the better to get on with things.
    Which wasn’t a big problem when I was mostly hanging out with taciturn farmers in a place where communication was front-loaded.

  18. I won’t say other countries don’t have hobbies. I do say other countries don’t engage their hobbies like we engage our hobbies.

    Based on magazines from Pocket Magazines I would argue the British have something close. In fact, they appear to have more active hobby magazines than the US (although they also seem to just have more magazines). Many hobby magazines, especially in music, in a B&N, are British.

    They also seem to sucker me with sales for e-magazines and complete back issue collections.

  19. Spring of 2020, traveling across the midwest, we found more signs on the highway saying some small town was “Fully open for business” and “no masks” than I care to say.

    Atlanta has a mask mandate for clubs and restaurants. The Masquerade even notes it on their website. I thought given their size the city would have enforcement agents collecting COVID taxes if nothing else.

    Yeah, effectively no one was masked last night and staff said nothing.

    1. Meanwhile the commies who run Philadelphia just reimposed indoor mask mandates. Wonder how many people even in that blue city will comply this time around.

  20. Every time I go to a used book store or flea market, I search for How-To books along with my usual fiction. Making a drying rack. Planting potatoes. Wiring a home. I’m getting quite a collection going to restart it all if the fall is a big one. Me and that guy from Lucifer’s Hammer, making sure “How Things Work” doesn’t get lost. Heh.

    1. and both have how-to books from 100 years ago or more. Titles such as “The Useful Arts Employed in the Construction of Dwelling Houses”, “Carpentry for Boys”, “Plank Frame Barn Construction” (just to list a few found when searching for “carpentry”). Lots of books on gardening, animal husbandry, beekeeping, etc. They are e-books rather than physical, which reduces their usefulness if the fall is a big one, but if they’re downloaded now and kept on a device that can be easily charged from a solar charger (and a solar charger or two also kept handy) they should be useful for quite a while.

  21. Speaking of completely implausible events. Just before school got out today our superintendent sent out an email to all staff about “Safe Spaces” signs.

    Very long document the upshot of which is…
    1. You are within your 1st Amendment rights to put up a Safe Space sign in your classroom or office. It may be rainbow colored.
    2. You may NOT under any circumstances put one in any public access area. Period.
    3. You best consider why you are putting up said sign in your space. If it’s to signal you are Safe, fine. If you have the idea you will be starting some sort of conversation, think again. That is NOT why we are here. Our job is to teach academics. Period. We have state goals and standards that our school board has approved so we have plenty to do without putting our students at the cutting edge of cultural change.
    4. It is a hard no for any conversations about such topics in elementary. Anything even remotely touching on these areas will be handled by our counselors or administration in an age appropriate way with parental imput. Other staff is not to involve the students in these matters in any way. If you have a rainbow colored sign of any kind and you get a question about the meaning from any students of any age, refer them to parents or administration. No classroom discussion is expected on these topics at any level.
    5. If you have a problem with this feel free to come talk. My door is always open. But rest assured that we do not intend to put our students in the firing line for people wanting to promote cultural change. We are here to teach academics.

    I was shocked to see something so concrete and in writing. Not sure what happened as I am always out of any loop that there ever is, however, that came shortly after I was told to revoke all credentials for a substitute teacher and she wasn’t to have access to any district materials.
    So somebody got in trouble I think.

      1. Sounds more like they had a problem, but managed to nip it in the bud before it got serious.

    1. Good to know at least some school admins have integrity. Thanks! Now if only they’d realize that “Safe Space”, like “Gun-Free Zone”, translates to “Criminal Free Fire Zone”…

        1. I am reminded, as a contrast, Simon Tam’s speech to Jayne in Firefly about “on this table, you’re safe.” On that table, Jayne would be a patient to Simon, nothing more. Doesn’t matter what Simon thinks of him personally. Doesn’t matter what Jayne had actually done to Simon and River. He’s a patient who will get Simon’s best efforts to save him. Period.

              1. Well, if nothing else he might be a good person to ask about trustworthy general practitioners in the area. That’s a start, at least.

                What is his specialty, anyway?

                  1. Well, then it sounds like living near him will be a good idea after all. 🙂

                    But what specialty is he going for?

        2. How unsurprising. In the UK, doctors proudly announced that if you said anything racist, they would refuse to treat you.

          1. …with “racist”, of course, being their personal definition, just as it is here; I guess Hippocrates is no longer relevant. And I suspect those same “proud doctors” (stunningbrave, no doubt) would be highly incensed if the same “standard” were applied to them by other doctors, police, or anyone else who held any sort of control over their health or safety, and who disagreed with them about anything at all.

            1. Clarification: By “here” I meant “in the US” where the inmates are attermpting to take over the asylum, not “in this forum” where sanity is the general rule. Sorry about the ambiguity.

        3. Well, it certainly doesn’t include that medical school. But a sample of one is not statistically significant; a better comment would be along the lines of even some medical schools not being immune to idiocy.

    2. If there’s a prism with the rainbow, it probably means you’re a Pink Floyd fan. ;-p

        1. “Another Brick In The Wall” has run through my head many a time of late, especially since the Florida anti-grooming law started getting so much hate from “teachers.”

        2. One of my favorite college memories is singing “We don’t need no education” right in the middle of calculus class and getting away with it. Of course, it helped that the teacher unwittingly set me up, so he wasn’t in a position to complain.

  22. I canoe just fine, thank you. My guns were lost in a freak climbing accident, when they were all eaten by a rabid mountain goat. Never could catch that goat to fetch ’em back . . . .

    1. I was hiking at Sand Dunes state park and my retention holster didn’t retain when I slipped and slid. A bad storm came up when I tried to go back and see if I could remember where exactly I was hiking. If you want to go looking, well, may your deity of choice be with you, and take a lot of water. A lot of water. Did I mention that you’ll need to take water?

      I don’t canoe. In fact, I’m sort of an object of wonder and pity because I seem to be the only water historian who doesn’t boat, fish, snorkel, SCUBA dive, or otherwise recreate on or in H2O.

      1. Floods. Can you imagine trying to find your collection in several hundred tonnes (at least) of mud and debris? Try running around with a metal detector. Still won’t help much, if at all.

        Down at the frog level when the creek jumps its bank, well, that’s normal for a flood year. But we’ve had once-a-century floods twice in my lifetime already. Gun safe? What gun safe? Entire cars got swallowed up in the mud. More important things to keep one’s attention when Mother Nature gets a mite testy with us. Like human lives.

        Any thunder what might be heard on a clear day echoing up from the hollers is probably just an old truck backfiring, more than like. The terrible canoe tragedy of 2008 is why I don’t go boating no more. But that’s not the only reason My poor gun rack has gotten lonely, gathering dust these years.

        A great pity, that. Yes, a great and terrible pity.

      2. The one time I visited that park there was so much sand it scared me.

        Sand loss, though. Well done. Really well done.

        1. Sand loss, though. Well done. Really well done

          100% Believable. Have you ever been to the Sand Dunes south of Florence Oregon? There are some south of Reedsport too, but south of Reedsport, Sand Dunes loom over Hwy 101. No trucking in beach sand for beaches in Oregon.

          Note. Trucking in beach sand was a concept, as a native Oregonian, was – Wait? What? Why? 🙂

          1. Somebody was in love and had too much time on his hands is how sand got to Oregon. 🙂
            I’ve not yet been to the Oregon sands. It’s on my list.
            I’m yearning to visit The Sisters area sooner rather than later.

    2. Man that goat is going to have some serious intestinal issues, poor creature…

  23. Enjoyed the post. Enjoyed the comments. Got lots of good ideas from both. Thanks!! May you long continue being your impossibly improbable self! 😉

  24. David the Good is a complete whacko, and I love him 🙂 He synthesizes a lot of different growing systems and adapts to his conditions. Definitely a wealth of good info in his vids and posts.

  25. O. M. G. Over on Instapundit, it says they’re counting drug overdoses and suicides and other deaths of pregnant women, or post-pregnant women, as maternity mortality statistics.

    I just never get done being astonished at how stupid and venal these government types can be. What next? Death of 18 year olds as infant mortality?

    1. No doubt they are counting them as CCP virus deaths as well; although some of the drug overdoses and suicides no doubt are due to the government response to the CCP Virus.

      1. Well, if the government forces somebody to get two retrovirus inoculations and they have a bad reaction and die, it’s ‘because of COVID19’ isn’t it? I mean, that would be the ‘root cause’, right? </lethal sarcasm>

    2. If you were pregnant in the last year, yeah, it gets added in– have for years, now, if I remember right it was related to covering up possible malpractice.

          1. “Because someone already tried it that way, Private Schmuckatelli. NO. Follow the manual.”

            See Also: Skippy’s List.

            1. There may or may not be rules, regulations, and/or official instructions that exist as a result of things I allegedly did.

              Or, as I used to tell certain Adopted Children: DON’T do that. Here’s WHY you don’y do that. Here’s what will happen if you by some act of Bob you succeed in doing that, how much it’ll hurt, and what punishments you might receive for doing that when you inevitably get found out, and you will be found out. How do I know? Well…

              1. Never uttered by a boy or girl scout “how do the adults know what we are going to do before we do!”

                Um. Because your adult leaders were 11 – 18 once too? I mean there are reasons why some the old but good ones aren’t allowed anymore.

  26. I know it’s a late hit, but we got great results just running an air hose fitting through the door of the freezer. Freeze your stuff in anything that will hold a vacuum (including mylar bags, BTW, if the food won’t stab through them), and turn on a cheapo vacuum pump once they are frozen.

    I had a vacuum pump anyway to work on my car’s AC, and it was only about $50 at Harbor Freight. Three small pressure cookers and $10 in fittings and we were in business.

      1. Not a schematic, no.

        I have the 2-stage vacuum pump, which looks like its fully doubled in price.The single stage is plenty, though it, too has gone way up in price — $100 or so. There should be a 20% off coupon online somewhere. Or check on eBay or Amazon.

        The only change I had to do with the pump was unscrew the Shrader valve and replace it with a bog-standard 1/4″ MPT female air hose fitting. Find a small pressure cooker that fits in your freezer and replace the pressure port (the thing that lets steam out on the top) with a male fitting for an air compressor. In my case, all I had to do was use a 1/4″ die on the stem. My neighbor ended up having to drill a hole and use a tap. If you put a shut-off valve on it, even better. Freeze something you want to try. Sliced carrots are pretty easy. If you can keep them from freezing together by using some waxed paper or aluminum foil between layers, all the better.

        Next day after it’s frozen, pump it down to suck out all the water.

        If you kind of enjoyed that, there are all kinds of refinements, like drilling a hole through the freezer door to pass an air line through (NOT the sidewall, unless you know there are no refrigerant lines there, finish with caulk and Great Stuff) so you can pull a vacuum without taking it out of the freezer, threading on tees so you can do more than one pot at a time, adding a de-watering filter to the air line so you don’t damage the pump, racks to better keep food separated in the pressure cooker, etc.

        1. Oh, and if you are pulling the vacuum outside the freezer, it might take a few tries to dehydrate. You don’t want the food to thaw, so you might have to disconnect it and put it back in the freezer to cool down. If you put a shutoff on the pressure cooker, that makes it really easy.

        2. Interesting – I think it might be easiest for me to get a small secondhand freezer (I can get them around here for about 40 bucks) and thread a hose through the drain plug hole. As long as the pump can plug into the wall, I could just leave it for a few days.

          I assume one sets the freezer to max?

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