Donnerstag, 26. November 2015
Actually, to be honest, it started out as a Grosses Messer, but I made a mistake with the integral bolster-so no crosspiece. But as I tried the layout I found it extremely dexterous that way and I want to push it to learn a bit about the balance of swords. As is, I forged a taper in that will get more pronounced in the forging process. I want a knife that is an able chopper but could be used as a whittler;-). So, we´ll see how it goes.... I´ll keep you informed of course.
Mittwoch, 25. November 2015
I have a new run of Hippocras/Theriak ready, brewed from:
-wild strawberry leaves
-bramble berries and leaves
-St. John´s wort
It is made after a 17th century Theriak recipe with inspiration by Konrad of Megenberg and Hildegard of Bingen. It has a very invigorating effect;-) and can be used as a medicinal against cough, flu, bad stomach, female complaints, as a digestive, stomach cramps, digestive problems and a mild antidepressive (provided you use it sensibly). Of course: Please remember to judge for yourself when to visit a doctor and when not to! I will not be made responsible for any adverse effects...
Always be cautious when using herbal concoctions, of course and blah, and blah, and blah...;-).
As a medicinal concoction, drink three mugs a day. You can also drink it warm, prepared just about the same as mulled wine.
As is almost customary, apologies for the lousy pics, I have to get a new camera soon!
Donnerstag, 19. November 2015
So, we all have talked about it in the bushcraft and survival community. We have marvelled about the ins and outs of catastrophe with a sick and morbid fascination. I had not exactly a part in it, because I always knew it would be shit.
It´s here. The end of the world as we know it. The end of freedom, the end of communication.
Terrorism is bad enough in itself, but the reactions of our respective governments will be but a tiny bit less bad. We will be faced with severe restrictions, we will be faced with death every day. One could either get depression or laugh one´s head off for the stupidity of mankind.
I refuse to give up. War is here, but I will survive as long as I can.
For my readers: Here are some links for some sensible preparations (English versions available via the mainpage)
I want to add up to this with my very own random thoughts on preparing for SHTF, with no claim of perfection whatsoever. Just ideas to inspire your own way of dealing with it:
If disaster strikes home, get out of urban areas. Prepare bug-out sites, but, most importantly, build your own countryside networks. No farmer will be enthused if you get out to him when disaster has struck. In fact, many inhabitants of the countryside will kill you or at least treat you with hostile force.
If you get to know them first and offer your help, skill and firepower in an emergency and work together with them, they will take you. Remember nothing´s free. I am a blacksmith with a smithy that can operate without electricity, and have a load of tools that could be of a valuable service. I have several skills to offer and so I was able to generate several networks where they would take me and some other individuals.
If at all possible, build up neighbourhood assistance networks. Talk it through and dispatch responsibilities in case of an emergency.
Any Southerner of Arabian, Albanian, Syrian, Afghan, Pakistani, Turkish, Kurdish, Jordanian and similar provenience (any Islamic country), is a potential deadly enemy and should be treated as a potential lethal threat. Treat them with a respectful cautiousness. But don´t go arse over tit by getting lost in hate fantasies. Learn as much as you can about Muslim culture. Use your brain and common sense.
Don´t visit festivals, concerts, sports events or political demonstrations. If you get into a political demonstration by accident, address a police officer and ask him to show you a way around it.
Don´t visit urban areas after 10 pm. The woods are far safer. If possible, walk detours.
Don´t visit pubs or restaurants known for big events and a lot of customer traffic, if you can´t find it in you to leave it be altogether.
Don´t use trains or buses. Walk or ride a bicycle, if you have no car.
As long as it possible, visit a doctor to get yourself in the best possible state of body health before everything goes foul. Get your teeth done, for instance, before doctors can´t help you anymore and you need to visit the blacksmith. Less teeth mean less energy, because it can become hard to process the food available.
Become the gray man.
Train in a martial art, but also go for a run or ride at least three days a week. Train your endurance, but also your sprinting prowess. Every family member should do so.
Train walking barefoot. In case you lose your shoes, this will make you easy prey for any pursuer if you have not trained your feet.
Gather up provisions, resources and victualies. Gather non-electric tools. Learn how to use them. Learn homesteading techniques and start a garden, if possible. Even in a flat you can grow some herbs and vegetables. Keep your house apothecary well stocked. Include a tactical first aid kit and bandaging material also for bullet, arrow and cold steel weapon injuries. Prepare comfrey balm and keep medicinal alcohol ready for disinfection. And, most importantly, and even more important than just piling up stuff, revisit your first-aid skills. Get a refreshment course if necessary.
Minimize your trash. Get a heavy lid for your toilet with a heavy weight standing besides to keep rats out. Seal any holes in your walls to keep critters at bay. Get killing rat and mousetraps and pesticides. Chance is, you will have to fight pest and critter animals more than actual terrorists when waste disposal comes to an end.
Get weapons legal to access. This means crossbows, slingshots, slings, bows, machetes, swords and muzzle-loaders in Germany (the latter require a "small" weapon license and a permit to handle explosives). Best use weapons with a tool character. For instance, a hoe´s handle will make a formidable and deadly pole weapon, as does a machete and an axe. Rid yourself of scruples and try to develop a killing attitude. This is crucial, because you can heap up as many weapons as you like if you are not capable of doing it. A skilled and determined fighter can use anything as a weapon, from PET bottles (even empty ones) to apples to kill, but if you lack the attitude, even automatic weapons will not do you any good. It is all in your head. Just remember a terrorist WILL kill you if you can´t get away, and if you can´t, you have to be faster. To be faster than a trained fighter (and they are) requires constant training.
Best run away, of course. But IF you are faced with a situation that requires killing, you have to keep in mind that it is you or them. I am not saying, however, that you should get yourself into trouble, and I cannot emphasize this enough. Just remember that IF the situation arises, there is no time for thinking.
Build your home with retreat in mind. Fortify the rooms up to a last respite, where you stock most of your weapons. Keep food and drink provisions in every room that can be defended, and a camping toilet in the last respite. Get a reinforced main door. If there are local restrictions on the layout of front doors, build it in behind the front door. Ideally, reinforce the whole entrance area with steel beams and concrete so that it can´t be levered out, even with hydraulic devices. Reinforce the respite room with a steel door and reinforce the entire wall with steel and concrete. Build steel-reinforced hardwood shutters for any windows and screw them in with tempered square-headed mushroom bolt screws if the need arises. Keep lighting at hand and enough batteries plus a dynamo-powered handlamp. Keep your communication devices and a shortwave receiver in your respite room.
If you are faced with an attack, NEVER play the hero. Get out of the way if at all possible. But also remember that any radical Muslim, Christian, Nazi or other terrorist will not trade you in for money and cannot be convinced to spare you. They WILL kill you. Get out of the way or kill them. When automatic weapons are involved, seek shelter behind something massive (concrete, bricks, stone, sandbags). A car door will not do. Keep silent, and keep a low profile. You can train on a softair site, but remember: Best stay way clear of any place where it could happen. Automatic weapons are extremely lethal, as are explosions. Best get out of areas with a high risk expectation.
All of these are just suggestions, of course, and you have to use your own brain for prepping. I will, for instance not waste my time with fortifying my flat, because I live very close to a potential target of terrorism, but put my energy into bugging out.
Get familiar with camouflage techniques in the environment you will be faced with. The "Reibert" handbook for soldiers in the German army gives some first insights on that. You can find essays about camouflage all over the place. In my opinion
-you have to know the environment
-you have to adapt to and blend into it as much as possible
-obscure your silhouette (with twigs, leaves, branches)
-offer digital overinformation (the principle of digital camouflage, i.e. offering too much information with an obscure background for human perception)
-avoid any contrasts (use paint etc.)
-develop a mindset "don´t mimic a bush, be a bush"
-make or buy a Ghillie suit
-transfer the "Gray Man" concept onto your area of camouflage, meaning, if you are in a forest environment, observe it closely and blend into it. Make it a habit of moving in stealth - at all times.
These are also principles I will refer to in another post on Skóggángr. I hope to take up training soon, but I first have to get a training facility. Might be it can be at the ironforge.
I want to say that I still respect Muslims and Christians and I am meaning no offence, but the monotheistic religions are prone to a terroristic mindset. This war has been started in the early medieval ages when Bernhard de Clairvaux (and other Christian fanatics) instituted the "Holy War" with the crusades. Then Hasan bin-Sabah established the order of the Assassins, and modern IS fighters still work along the same lines. Both were a shitty excuse for a priest and should rather not have been alive. But they were.
The deity had no part in this as far as their legitimation went. It was entirely an all-too-human affair. And it is not the whip of God or Allah we are faced with, but the effects of our own ignorance, blindness and plain stupidity. And our failure to accept that we are living on a ball of rock moving through light years of void, so we´d better get along with each other. That is not to say there is no deity, and to assume so would be plain illogical, but we simply should stop our sandbox games to wake up to the real world.
Personally I am sick of hierarchic religion with people in charge who do not deserve so. They are playing at collateral damage in a sandbox made out of the world. They could not wait for hell after life, so they keep making a hell on earth. I am tired, and If I have to die, I believe will give up this life not eagerly, but calmly. But I refuse to give them the right to dominate my thoughts and feelings.
Take care and stay alive! Keep loving your loved ones and do not forget that life is not always running, hiding and fighting, but that there are still sunbeams floating through the flittering leaves. This will fuck them best. And surviving this war means more than just staying alive, but overcoming the trauma we will inevitably be faced with. For it is this trauma and the resulting fear, hate and anxiety Evil feeds on.
(Picture source: www.hedendom.com)
When we were done, Nele and Michael had me hitch their drive and drove me home, and I left with a feeling of hope for the future.
Donnerstag, 5. November 2015
So the question remains... what shall we do with anti-democratic, anti-natural forces in our time? You might get the impression that this is a biased evaluation;-), and you´d be right, and of course my arguments limp a bit, for I uttered them as a way of illustrating an extreme.
I just want to warn you: Heads of big corporation DO think anti-democratic. They have to, if they are to be successful. They have no scruples. They will kill for profit, if they can get away with it. The time of the metalworking industry´s heigh days fouled up the woods forever. There is a question remaining, what big term fracking corporations or corporations employing genetic manipulation could do to the habitat. I would not take mushrooms from those woods, either, so to say.
And do not get it wrong: They WILL NOT listen to any arguments. They will not heed to your political demonstrations. They would kill you, if they can get away with it, or make orders to get you killed as easily as sweeping a chalk board.
People should stop admiring them. They are no better than mass murderers. It is not that they even WANT to wreak havoc upon the world and foul things up, they are even lower than that in that they simply do not care. Any prostitute or window sweeper does a lot of much more for the world.
I went and collected the scrap steel of that time. I like its properties, and the trails are getting a tiny little lighter. I´ll make some tools from it. I am a bum. But what we bums do is doing far more damage to their world than might be obvious.
Thanks for listening to my rant;-).
Does not decrease my appetite for salami, by the way. X-D
On Sunday the folks from the ironforge and myself decided it was some really fine weather to go for some mountainbike ride along som...
I am deeply grateful. Yes, people tend to complain a lot these days. It´s the weather, of course. When the sun is shining, they complain ...
Sometimes, when i am at the ironforge, the door is open, and while I always hear that eerie cry of the woods in my heart and in my soul, ...
Yap, I love these knives. Made from spring steel, they are made fast and are dead reliable and handle well. This one is selectively t...
This is one of those knives I own and use for quite a long time now. It rides in my pocket every day, since 2013... for a reason. In the ...
This is one of the latest incarnations of a breed I simply love to make these days - and it seems others do actually approve as well, for...
I just thought to give you some WIP pics of my "Grosses" Messer. The blade is all quenched now, selectively tempered (edge and h...
I had quite a stressy time again. At work and at the ironforge were a lot of things that - while not all being bad - required a lot of tim...
Natalie wrote me an SMS. Fancy a ride, she said. It´ll be dry, she said. ;-) Now dry it wasn´t, but fancy one ride I did. And I thought, w...
After a somewhat shocking hike to the ironforge, I was greeted by Daniel and the folks. Daniel had forged a pipe accessory set (for cle...