Saturday, 20 February 2021
Thursday, 18 February 2021
Saturday, 30 January 2021
December of 2020 was not only the end of a difficult year for most of us, but the end of a chapter in my life.
Friday, 27 November 2020
Tuesday, 31 December 2019
Even before I start writing this I cant help wonder how many blog posts are going to hit the internet in the next 24 hours with the same title.
Truth be told I am once again not making any resolutions for the next year/decade. The plans I have for the forthcoming 12 month I started on December 1st this year (2019),
My only resolution was to get in shape and 31 days later I am still sticking by it, I am eating a more healthy diet, no junk food at all, not even a sniff. I dont take sugar in my coffee now and have even cut the amount of that down as well.
On December 5th I started the 100 press ups a day for 30 days challenge and so far I have stuck to it.
I walk to work instead of taking the bus.
Instead of making more resolutions I am planning on upping the amount of press ups I am doing from 100 to 125 on the 7th January, I have a set of workouts I plan to start next month as well.
If anything I am drawing a lot of inspiration from a YouTube video I watched a few day ago were guy called Joe Rogan talks about becoming the hero in your own movie.
Thursday, 28 November 2019
I lost about 80% of the hearing in my left ear in spring of this year, no idea how or why but I have. The thing is, the pitch of some sounds can cause me actual physical pain, kids screaming is a good one, shouting is another.
When there is a lot of noise going on at the same time I get what I can only describe as an audio over load, as my good ear tries to pick out and prioritise what I need to hear over the background hustle and bustle, sometimes my right ear just overloads and throws everything at me which basically deafens me, I am hearing almost nothing except white noise in my left ear and I am hearing every sound available in my other.
Anyway, we have workmen round at the moment removing the cavity wall insulation so we can get new (better) put in, its part of some kind of government scheme which we have qualified for, replacement insulation and a new boiler..
As you can imagine, there is lots of noise, there is a pump going, lots of drilling and banging and then there is Gizmo, our little Jack Russel who is barking, constantly barking, for the last hour.
Thing is, little Gizmo`s bark is one of those sounds which has a pitch that hurts, especially when he rolls out half a dozen barks, one after the other... Ouch..
I`m hoping that the workmen manage to get all the insulation out and the new back in today, better still, this morning, otherwise they say that they will have to come back tomorrow to put the new stuff in, which means, chances are that they will be here with their noise when I finish work.
On top of that, deep down I know that I am stressing out a bit about the damage that they will do to the new lawn I planted earlier this year. I am rather proud of it, but it is still in its infancy so is easily damaged.
Hang on, they have turned their pump down, they might be finished.
That`s it for this one, I`m going to make coffee and get some pain killers into me.
Sunday, 24 November 2019
How often have you read a comment or heard someone saying "Keep Britain British"!, "Keep the foreigners out of England, England is for the English"!?
You have probably heard a lot more of this of late, more so over the last few years. I know I have.
The problem is that, what most people fail to realise is that the "British" people are of mixed race, each and every one of us.. We are an island of mutts, there is not a single 100% pure British person in this country, hell even the Queen of England is German.
The average resident of the UK is, at best 60.5% European a large percentage of this being Irish, and around 36% Anglo Saxon Source (the Saxons hail from Northern Germany, The Netherlands and Denmark) with the remaining 3.5% or there about hailing from where ever people can hail from.
Sunday, 17 November 2019
Nah, everything is ok, no one has hacked my blog, I had the need, the want to have a short rant.
Pyjama Mamma`s, people, usually female (sorry) who spend their days in their PJ`s.. Dont get me wrong, PJ days are OK, spending the day in front of the TV in Your pyjamas is fine, I have no problems with that.
2: Dignity (Get some)!!
Wednesday, 13 November 2019
Tuesday, 10 September 2019
While the cadets in my detachment paraded down stairs I was up stairs setting up a classroom for my first official lesson as a Sergeant Instructor in the ACF. I am not going to lie, my heart was pounding and I was more nervous for this one than I was for both the lessons I had to prep and deliver while I was on my AIC (Advanced Instructors Course). Once I was et up and ready I went down stairs and joined in with the end of the parade, telling the new cadets which classroom they were in.
This is it, there was no going back. I walked into the room to find around 10 cadets waiting for me.
If I am honest the lesson went rather well, bearing in mind that if your cadets sense fear or if they pick up on a mistake you have made they will tear you to bits, I have seen this happen. Now I personally could have picked up a number of faults with it but when I asked the cadets for their feedback, explaining that this was my first official lesson as an instructor, the only criticism they gave was that, at times I was talking a bit too fast for them.
The second lesson went a lot better than the first I thought, but even then “I” noticed a few faults and things that I could have done better.
At the moment I am taking a break from my lesson plans to make this post, I have organised the lesson schedule for the rest of this month and part of next month, once these have been done I will be working on individual lesson plans for each of the scheduled lessons.
If I am honest the only pressure I'm feeling now with regards to my lessons is.. I need to make sure that the stuff that I am teaching is right and makes sense to cadets aged 12 to 16 years, if I get it wrong or pass on wrong information my recruits (Basics) wont pass their tests and move on to the next level of training.
Yeah No pressure lol
Friday, 6 September 2019
It's weird where inspiration comes from sometimes. Like today, it just jumps out and punches you right you in the face and all you can think about for the rest of that day is that hit.
Well, that was me today, I was at work cleaning the shop floor and someone I used to work with years ago walked into the shop, to this day I know him under his internet name "Scribbler".
We recognised each other straight away and why shouldn't we? It was this person who started me writing blogs way back in the days when you had to be sat in front of your computer to write a post, you had to have a digital camera if you wanted to take a photo for said post and podcasts were only for those with a degree in geek and enough money to set up a small radio studio.
We talked about the old days, how he was and how I was, you know, the usual stuff people talk about when they haven't seen each other in a while. Then he asked me out if the blue if I was still blogging, to which I sheepishly replied,
"Sometimes, you know, I'll write a post saying that I have been very busy and will try to post more..and then don't post for too long, only to write another post with the same excuse".
I have to admit I was surprised when he said he did the same, except for how he intends to write a blog about what he got up to on that day, only to stay in bed until 1.00 in the afternoon.
We talked bout how we used to have a race to see which one of us could get a photograph of the first snow of the year up on our blogs, me or scribbler on his blog Mercury vapours (I don't know if Scribblers blog is still on line so it's up to you if you want to check) and if you're interested I think he is or was winning the snow post by 7 years to 4.
After talking for about 15 minutes Scribbler continued into the store I work in and I returned to sweeping the floors, I have to admit, all I wanted to do was sit down and start to write a blog post about our meeting.
Points to note: it's nearly 8.00 in the evening and after 5-6 attempts, I have wrote the post I needed to write earlier today.
Wednesday, 14 August 2019
For one I have a new job working in a department store, it might only be part time but when my early start means I need to be up at 5 in the morning, early nights will become plenty. On top of this I have been in training, I`m sure I have mentioned this before but I have been training to become an instructor in the Army cadets.
As well as obligatory weekends away from home I had to go to the ACF County training wing two times a week, minimum.
Anyway, getting to the point, two weeks ago I had to go to the ACF training centre for 7 days to finish my training and be assessed to see if I was "competent" and knew enough, was compitent and was confident enough to be able to stand in front of a room full of 12 to 17 year olds and teach them military based subjects as per the ACF manual.
The good news is, I am, I passed the course and was graded as competent and highly competent.
Next week I have to go back to the training wing to return my issued field kit and officially be promoted from PI (Probationary Instructor) to Sergeant. In 2 weeks time I am able to return to my detachment to take up the roll of SI (Sergeant Instructor) and start teaching the Basics and One Star cadets (Basic cadets are the new recruits and one star cadets are junior cadets).
Hasn't been easy
I`m not going to lie, the past few month has had its low points and moments when I honestly thought about quitting.
One of those times was when I had to give a 15 minute lesson on "Why Things Are Seen" a field craft lesson taught to basic cadets.
I stood in front of the Training Sergeant Major and my mind went blank, I couldn't remember a thing, litterally it was possibly the worst 15 minutes I have had in a very long time.
I recorded a video about it the next day. I think that moment was one of the main times I honestly thought about quitting.
One of my work colleagues from the store I work in saw some of the photographs which were taken while I was on my course and told me today that I looked so comfortable and at home when I was in the field, soaking wet and tired and that this was definitely my calling.
When all is said and done, now that my training has finished, the work has only just begun and boy and I looking forward to it.
Tuesday, 23 April 2019
So I thought it might be a good idea to update you guys on what I have been up to blog wise. When I first started this blog I had the idea of writing stuff about horror movies and how to survive should your fav horror flick come to life, tomorrow.
Thing is, believe it or not but, although I am a stupidly huge fan of post apocalyptic movies there are other things that I enjoy or get me way to excited for a bloke my age should get.
Yes, there is Bushcraft and urban/wilderness survival but there is more still, I happen to have a big interest in the paranormal and ufology, I like to think that I am a spiritual person even though I prefer not to align to any specific religious doctrine and no, before you say it (and one of you will say it, or at least think it), I am not unfocused, I am multifaceted, I have more than one interest and I want to share those interests here.
For this reason I have deleted what I liked to call my archive blog, where I kept all the posts I have ever made, going right back to March 2006. I dont want to write a blog about horror movies and the apocalypse, not when there is all sorts of things I want to write about.
So there you have it, have a look around, Im sure that there will be something here which catches your eye.
Friday, 18 January 2019
I didn't make any resolutions this year, I haven't for a few years now, I think that to call something a "resolution" can set you up for a fail from the start. Instead I set some goals, things I want to achieve this year.
Getting my sergeant stripes and becoming a cadet instructor is way up there but, after a meeting with the company commander and the other instructors of A coy ACF I plan to be trained as an expedition instructor helping to teach army cadets wilderness survival and bushcrafting skills, I would honestly love to do this.
First things first though, I need to get past an interview with the company 2IC and finish my instructors training before I start on my Ex-ped training, as far as I am aware I should finish my instructors training by October this year.
|Not My Detachment.|
In the mean time I plan to work on my fitness, I need to build up my stamina and strength so that I can walk for longer while carrying everything I need for, say a week in the wilderness. I have no plans on joining a gym, instead I want to work on my fitness the old fashioned way by putting on a backpack and getting out there and just doing it. No fancy running trainers, just a pair of ild 1980`s army issue jungle boots, my thinking is.. I almost always wear boots so if something were to happen where I had to run, I am not going to be able to just pop my trainers on and start running, so being used to running in boots seems to be a no brainer.
I also plan to work on my bushcrafting and wilderness survival skills, including tree identification, wild foods, shelter construction and much more. I also want to become a dead shot with my slingshot, not for hunting. I still go by the rules that if I dont need to eat it as a matter of survival I will not kill it, so targets it is.
A couple of years ago my lifestyle and the things I did was impacted by my health, I am determined not to let that happen this year, I want to spend as much time as I can out doors practising my survival skills, saying that, at the moment everything is kind of stalled because of family things which are going on, which are stopping me from doing much of what I want to do. These things do happen..
Finally, I plan to turn part of my garden into a veg patch and start growing basic veggies, potatoes, carrots and the like.
Sunday, 13 January 2019
Legally: You save your money and buy the item by legal means
Illegally: You just take what you want, get it by any means.
Make it: You look at what you want/need and try to make it
As you can see in the above picture I ended the tweet by saying that I was planning on making myself a half decent lock picking set. I do have my reasons for wanting to learn how to pick locks and you will be happy to hear that my reasons are 100% legal and above board, the way I am looking at this skill is the same as my goal at becoming a dead shot with a slingshot, just because I can take out a small animal with a slingshot does not mean that I am going to, in fact I hope that I never have to. The same thought applies to being able to pick locks, just because I can does not mean that I am going to.
It was the above comment that prompted me to write this post. Sometimes 260 characters is not enough to fully explain your intentions.
As some of you will know, I am training to become an adult instructor in the Army cadet force, this year I will be attending weekend camps and exercises as a PI (Probationary Instructor), some of these camps will have upwards of 200 plus cadets attending and you can almost guarantee that on more than one of these camps at least one cadet is going to lock there locker key inside there locker, and as luck will have it, they either didn't bring a spare key or, the spare key is still attached to the other one.
Yeah, in life only three things are certain, death, taxes and that one cadet who locks there keys in their locker. This is why I want to learn how to pick locks, if I can open the lock without breaking it then we can get the keys and the above mentioned cadet can continue to safely lock their gear away for the rest of the camp.
Thursday, 20 December 2018
So, where have I been? In short, at home.. At the moment my wife and I have a lot going on in one way or another, these things are taking a lot of our time, and that is all I am willing to say at the moment, except to say that as well as the above my laptop decided that it wanted to stop doing anything, and I mean "anything", if I had more than one thing running it would lock up and stay like that.
It has taken me the better part of 5 days to get it working again, at one point I even installed Ubuntu on it so that I could at least have an operating system that worked. Unfortunately the only video editor that was willing to run on it kept crashing.
I only had 2 choices...
Wait until January and see if I could find a new computer in the sales or..
Do everything in my power to get Windows working on it again.
It has taken nearly double figures in attempts to get Windows installed and finally, finally, today I succeeded. Right up until the very last minute, I was hoping, praying that it would work, I didnt dare assume that everything was OK after spending days seeing an error message pop up at the very last minute, but this time, it worked.
So, plans. As you no doubt have noticed, it is the holiday season, the season of spend too much and eat, drink even more, yes its Excessmas.
I do plan to write more blog posts, record videos and podcasts over the holidays but I dont plan to start to publish or upload them regularly until the new year, its only 11 days away so its not too bad.
I still have a lot of work to do here at home as well as on my sites so bear with me and enjoy your holidays.
Saturday, 1 December 2018
The thing is, when you start to go deep in to prepping for an emergency situation, you're always thinking about the next possible situation where you might need to draw on your preparedness skills,
It can get to a point where you start to look at everything you see in the news as a possible SHTF situation, your view of people can change as well, you can start to see them, not as people but as potential threats and instead of enjoying the outdoors you're too busy looking for exit routes and places to duck and cover.
Don't get me wrong, everyone should have an emergency plan and a backup plan, as well as a decent size stockpile of food, water, medications you and your family take and a good size first aid kit, not forgetting a means to cook said food and water.
Preparing for a possible emergency is a no brainer everyone should do it as a matter of course, but being constantly on the look out for that emergency situation can become unhealthy.
On a slightly different subject, but not different if you know what I mean Every prepper knows or should know at least the basics of Bushcraft or wilderness survival, but not every bushcrafter or woodsman needs to be a prepper.
I am still making sure that my family and I have enough food, water and meds just on case something happens, but lately I have found my self avoiding Prepping videos and discussions on the internet about emergency preparedness and the like, instead I have found that I am doing more and more Bushcraft, wild camping and out doors related stuff, I am fascinated by it.
Even now, while I am writing this, I have what I hope is two tins of char cloth cooling down in the kitchen, so I can start making up and adding to my fire starting kit, I say hope because the last time I tried to make charcloth I ended up with a tin full of ash.
Moving on, recently I took my interest in Bushcraft and the wilderness to what I consider to be the next level and I joined the army cadets as an adult instructor.
See, I was born into the army, when I was a kid I was a member of the cadets and I have spent a few years as an Infantry reserve, so the training I have to do isn't going to be that much of a steep learning curve, its more of a refresher I think, I hope..
I have about 10 month to learn and to be able to teach what it takes a cadet 3 and a half years to learn. No pressure there…
The good news is, it will broaden my skill set and give me the chance to pass on my knowledge of the military, as well as being able to share some tips and tricks I have learned in my study of Bushcraft onto the cadets as they learn about field craft and surviving out in the wilds.
At the moment all I can do is observe as I am not yet allowed to teach without supervision until I have my uniform and my paperwork and police checks come back and the paperwork wont be getting sent off until I have been observed, passed my first assessment and been interviewed by the company commander, which should be next week with any luck.
The way I am looking on it is, as well as going by the cadet ideals of giving kids life skills that they can use in the future, helping make memories that they will never forget, build their confidence and help to make them good people, If just one kid finds a use for the tips and tricks I pass on or is inspired to take up Bushcraft and get out into the out doors more often, instead of sitting over a computer playing games or living on one or more social media platform.. I will be happy
Wednesday, 7 November 2018
I started uploading videos to YouTube in March of 2012, about a month or so before YouTube opened the doors to its partner program, so that anyone could join. Since then I have had three channels, my current one iJimUK being my third channel, and my last.. I hope..
Since my first upload way back in 2012 I have only ever had two strikes for copyright on any of my videos, the second one was a few weeks back on my Video Noscere`s Call to Action, because I used a clip from the move The Matrix.
So when another email from YouTube hit my inbox this week, my first thought was "oh bugger, someone else is claiming copyright infringement but I was wrong, instead it was an email wishing my channel a happy 2nd Birthday.
With everything I have going on at home at the moment and yet another change to my channels format I didn't even realize it had been up for so long. Hard to believe that two years ago I had this idea of making a channel dedicated to the way I see the world, a kind of guerilla journalism channel, which in time changed to a commentary channel where I hid my face, then I decided not to hide my face, to what it is now, a channel about Prepping, Bushcraft and horror movies, where I hide my face.
I am choosing not to celebrate iJimUK`s 2nd birthday because I am not 100% happy with it yet, I still hadn't gotten into the swing of everything yet, maybe by the time it is three years old, we will have to wait and see…
Friday, 21 September 2018
A few posts ago we talked about how you and your body is your first and best weapon in a SHTF scenario, I want to justify that statement by adding the will to live and knowledge to the mix.
It is no good having the best gear available if you don't know how to use it. Knowing how to survive in an off grid urban environment or wilderness setting is paramount, second only to having a good level of fitness and stamina and neither of the above are of any use at all if you do not have the will and drive to stay alive as the world as we know it crumbles around you.
With all the will in the world and all the best Prepper tech available, if you had to grab your bug out bag and move to one of your bug out locations, the only thing you will be able to rely on will be your fitness, your will to live and what you know. How to light a fire when it's cold, windy or raining, how to make a shelter, get water and purify it when your out of those little tablets and you cant find your life straw, what wild foods you can and can't eat, how to snare and hunt animals for food and everything else that goes with having to live in the wilderness.
This is where Bushcraft comes in. Bushcraft in my opinion is an umbrella term for being able to survive in a sort of comfort in the wilderness, being as comfortable as possible and at home in the wilds, knowing what I can and can't eat and being able to find and/or make some kind of shelter.
If you were to ask 500 people who are knowledgeable in bushcraft, what bushcraft is, you will get 500 different answers. Some will say it's wilderness survival, others might say it's being able to know the wilds or have knowledge of the wilderness and how to best use it.
Either way, what ever your answer is, knowledge of bushcraft is paramount if you are going to survive in a SHTF situation. After all, what are you going to do if you have ran out of food, your in the middle of a wood, surrounded by spruce trees, have no water and your bug out bag floated off down a stream two days ago, the only things that you have on you is what ever you had attached to your belt, a knife, a torch and some string..
Any bushcrafter will say that if you have a good knife on your side, you have everything you need to survive. I myself have joked a few times with my kids when they ask me what I have in my bag and I tell them,
They used to reply with something like "What, you have a house, or a billboard in your bag?"
To which I would reply, "I have a knife and some string so technically, yes, I do have a house and a billboard in my bag, all I need to do is find some wood and make them"
The picture above is not my bushcraft gear,, though I wish it was and admittedly the house would be more of a lean to among some trees and the billboard would be what ever I wrote on a wall of cliff face with a chunk of burnt wood I took from the last fire I made, but you get where I am going with this.
I am new to bushcraft and everything that goes with it but I have a decent size bag with enough in it to start me off, I have a good hunting knife, I have a bigger 120 litre bag with everything else I need in it (or it will have by the time I have finished) and most of all I have the will to learn.
I know that I am going to make mistakes and fail at almost everything I try but failure is part of the learning process and it is better to get it wrong now, than when the lives of my family and my self depend on me getting it right.
Up until this year I would say that I was almost 100% connected to the grid, I depended on it for just about everything, food, water, warmth, security and everything else that comes with society as we have come to know it. I don't want to be that person any more, which is why I have cut down my time connected to the grid via my computer, the TV and my phone by almost half. I hardly ever watch TV now and only use my computer for making these blog posts, recording and editing my podcasts and research.
Instead I am outside in the garden or going for walks, every time I go out, even if it is just to the shops I grab my day bag on my way out and I have to say, I do feel better for it both physically and mentally.
It has been and will be quite the journey I am taking and I want to take you along with me, through my successes and my failures.
That being said, lets grab a rucksack and get out there..
Thursday, 30 August 2018
However, if the electricity were to go out the effects would be immediately felt, after the initial confusion we would pull out the candles and after explaining to our kids why you can't get the WiFi back on, we would sit and patiently wait for the power to be reconnected.
But what if it didn't come back on? What if we found our selves in a long term Grid Down situation? No ETA as to when we would get power back, it just stayed off... Even if we are well prepared for it with candles, solar lanterns and torches, it wont take long before the water stops or becomes undrinkable as the water filtration systems failed due to the lack of power, deliveries of food to our local stores will stop and because these days our stores get deliveries on a "nearly out of stock basis" their shelves will be empty within a matter of days, if not hours, even if deliveries were to get through, perishable foods will defrost and go bad in a matter of hours in the summer, a day or so in the winter because our grocery stores would have no power to run their freezers. Then what?
This is where the panic will set in, and scared people can become dangerous people. Society as we know it would totally collapse in a matter of days as the police loose control of our towns and cities and concentrate instead on the safety of their own families and loved ones.
It is at this point our only hope would be Martial law taking control of our towns and cities and even then, the best that we could hope for would be check points to control the movement of people around the country, as whole areas of cities would become no go zones, now under the control of gangs and marauders. This is the part of a SHTF scenario that fills me with dread, it would be bad enough trying to steer my family through a SHTF landscape to our bug out safe place, if we decided to make that move, without having to deal with the criminal element, now given free reign to do what ever they want.
When people become hungry and thirsty or when they realise that they can only live for three days without water before severe dehydration sets in, shops will be the first to be looted, once our super markets are empty the next step would be gangs going door to door looking for food and water, it won't matter if there are families with children in a house, if they have food they will become a target.
With no law enforcement in place, no consequences to pay for your actions, some people will have free reign to do what ever they want.
With any luck those in the know will have seen the signs and bugged out, leaving the city before society broke down, if they are lucky.
We have seen it so many times where the mob mentally takes hold almost over night, a good example would be London Riots of August 2011 when businesses, even small ones were looted and then destroyed, even innocent people walking down a street became a target as gangs walked the streets, taking whatever they wanted, "Shopping For Free" were the new buzz words.
Of course the riots and looting will only last so long, after a week or so there will be nothing left to take or destroy. With no water sanitation, garbage collection and the other unseen pest control companies that go unseen no longer there, disease will take hold, there will be no hospitals or doctors available, hospitals will have already been looted and destroyed, the people who staffed them gone to be with their lives ones, the old, the disabled and those addicted to drugs will be first to go, followed by those who depend on medication so that they can live a relatively normal life, compounding an already disease infested country.
It won't always be like this though, at some point people will come together and form small communities through common goals, the main one being survival. In the end, people will always group together, its what we do.
It has taken nearly 2,000 years for our civilisation to get where it is today, but it could take only one day, one single day to undo everything we have built up.
It has come to my attention that the British government as well as other works government's are talking about something which has been d...