Episode-972- Listener Feedback for 8-31-12 — 13 Comments

  1. Jack,
    The most productive, sturdy and beautiful tomato plants I had this year seem to be the ones that I let do whatever they wanted instead of staking them up. Some of them partially snapped, but they just kept growing. They’re all over the place, pouring over the sides of my 4 x 8 hugelkultur/raised beds and spilling out into the isles and pathways between, growing with the grass and weeds.

  2. Regarding stevia, I’m what some call a “super taster”. This means a couple things.

    1) I taste an aftertaste in certain kinds of stevia because of either bulking agents or extraction method.
    2) Even “the good stuff” will taste bitter to me if I use too much. When working with stevia, there can be a fine line between enough and too much.

    And Jack is right on about mixing sweeteners. That’s how we deal with the aftertaste in the low-carb world.

    Lastly, I have PURE stevia extract POWDER, and it’s not bulked in any way. It comes with this tiny scoop (maybe 1/32 t), and it’s equivalent to about 2t sugar. In my experience, after tasting lots of different stevia products, the pure extract powder (I use NOW brand) has the least aftertaste of all of them.

  3. Long term sugar storage.

    If you have access to an LDS Bishops Storehouse with a cannery, you can make an appointment to purchase bulk long term storage items. Some of the items like sugar require you to pack the item into #10 cans at their facility. Currently, a #10 can of sugar which weighs 6.1 pounds, costs $4.50 (about $0.75 per pound). While this is a little more expensive than buying a 25 or 50 pound bag, it includes the container which is rated at 30 years. I have a number of long term items stores in Mylar and 5 or 6 gallon pails, but some good friends who are LDS members have convinced me that even though there’s a little cost increase, the #10 cans are an ideal way to store long term items. Unless you’re using a lot of sugar, wheat, rice, etc, then opening a 5 gallon pail and resealing it is a potential issue. Opening a #10 can (especially when you have the plastic lids to reseal the can short term) usually gives you a manageable amount that will be used in a more timely fashion. Also, if you should run into an issue of damage to your stored items, a few damaged #10 cans wastes a whole lot less and a few damaged 5 or 6 gallon pails.

  4. Jack,
    I loved your answer to the solar generator question,they are marketing to newbies and probably making a fortune.I learned my lessons well in Katrina .I have a 6500 watt gen set with a couple of barrels (35gal) of treated gas that I rotate out and a 95 watt solar setup that keeps my chest freezer and led lighting going.I really had it made this week in issac while everyone was running around looking for supplies,I just sat back and watched the show.Good advice ,keep up the good info bro,u the man…..

  5. Jack, excellent advice on the solar. I am in whole hog, partially off grid; but for a small system, you can get a nice AGM battery, inverter, even the pure sine waves are getting cheaper, I have a Powerbright 1000 watt in my shed for running small stuff. And I have a few panels and a 7a charge controller. My buddy owns Battery House in Moncton N.B and I get used GC225’s from him. If you want to spend more, a couple of Surrette S530’s (6v) each are good. And as you said, skip the solar, buy a cheap charger and even some 12V LED’s. Lighting is the big thing for me . Most power failures up here in in the winter. So I could move my food outside in coolers if I had to, but when dusk arrives at 4:30, I need light

  6. In regards to lighting in a power outage, I use an old kerosene lamp and/or solar landscape lights. I really love the landscape lights…literally plucked within feet of my front door and safely carried through the house.

  7. Jack,

    I’m laughing because I had the same experience thinking that this storm was minor, no big deal, etc. Then a couple of days ago, I’m cleaning up debris in the yard and get a call from my wife saying she received a call from a friend saying that an immediate evacuation was ordered for our area. I turned on the news and it was true. About that same time, a sheriff’s care came blazing down our road (rural area) with the bullhorn on telling us to get the hell out. The deal was that a lock on our canal might fail at anytime because a certain agency responsible for maintaining it had failed to do their job. The Sheriff’s dept had to cut the lock to he facility and open a release valve to relief pressure. Anyway, I had minutes to grab what I could, pets, papers, etc., and get out. The situation was somewhat stabilized the following day and we came back home, but it was a madhouse with numerous law enforcement, nation guard, wildlife management, and emergency responders on the spot.
    So, here’s an experiment for your listeners: Out of the blue on a day when your sweaty and tired from working outside, you’re suddenly given an immediate evacuation order. What would you do? Now, here the second part: Try it out.


  8. About the credit card, you don’t get better or good credit for having a balance on the card. Just having the account open and paid up to date gives you all the “good” ticks on your credit report that are possible.

    Having a balance will be considered with regard to debt/income, and obviously higher is worse. Having an open credit line with no balance gives the best possible affect on your credit score and overall report.

    And I’m not saying that you should have credit cards, but if you have them without a balance isn’t a bad thing at all compared to holding a balance.

  9. I made some stevia extract with rum. Is this ok?
    I know should have grain alcohol but I had the rum and was just experimenting. Are there any major problems with this?

  10. Good show Jack. Had an interesting conversation with a lady with her small child this weekend who I ran into at a bookstore. She was looking for self reliance type books. Pointed her to a Country Living book which she bought and to look into your podcast. Maybe you could add a link to your main page to a page that gives someone a good introduction to the first steps on becoming more self reliance. Many bookstores by the way now have a section on self sufficiency/survival near their gardening/farming books.

  11. Re: traumatically-induced cardiac arrhythmia.

    It’s “commotio cordis” (agitation of the heart, just think of a “commotion” in a crowd to remember this…). Related is “contusio cordis” which is bruising of the heart.

    There’s a decent write-up here:

    (1) Jack is right-on in mentioning the association with young people and sports. Why is this relevant? Because, as Jack has said, a significant part of prepping is being ready to save a life.
    Arrhythmias of this (significant) type more often occur with older people (eg. classic example of 55 yr-old clutching chest and falling over). So people don’t tend to think of arrhythmias with youth and children. Just having this in mind might make a difference, because
    *by FAR* the biggest effect on survival is early (electrical) defibrillation. As a prepared bystander, this means
    (a) getting EMS activated as an absolute priority… A lot of police cruisers these days carry AEDs (Automated External Defibrillators) and response time might beat the local medics, depending on where you are. A lot of malls have these as well.
    (b) early CPR to provide some bridging oxygen to the brain

    (2) Re: “precordial thump” (not pericardial thump)
    Yes, the principle is the same. It’s not generally considered very effective.
    If I’m literally in the middle of nowhere (no defibrillator conceivably will make it in time), I’d probably try it in witnessed arrest. When it was taught, it was taught as a first step and needed to be done quickly (probably because of the value of having the heart still oxygenated).
    Value is marginal to this discussion for general prepping and modern CPR.

    (3) Using this phenomenon as a weapon.
    Given that commotio cordis is not that common (even so, e.g. think how often youth are hit in the chest in sports), I’d conclude it’s not a reliable mechanism, and I’d really shy away from thinking of this as a weapon.
    As a doc, I’d think to aim first for the head, the sides of the body armor, or the pelvis. Or, maybe, center-of-mass just figuring that was more likely to get me a hit somewhere in the heat of the moment. Better yet, I’d aim where a mil or tactical trainer told me to aim, not some doc on a forum. 😉
    From what I’ve gathered in speaking with combat veterans, there is still offensive psychological value in firing at a person with armor.


  12. is there a show that goes into detail on how to build a small solar backup system? I understand the basic principals but wanted to get some brand names of chargers, inverters and panels.
    thx Tar