Sunday, December 10, 2017

Storm Caroline

I just returned safely from 28 days on the North Sea on the vessel "Fastnet Sentinel". The last third of the trip we were caught dead center in the storm "Caroline".

Here is how my "view from my office" looked like for 8 days: 13 m waves and up to 89 knots wind.


Monday, December 4, 2017

The Paracord Anchor

I had a bit downtime this trip and decided to do something constructive/decorative: The Paracord Anchor.

The Paracord Anchor in all its glory.
About...errr... 6 m of para cord.

Start your anchor with a diamond knot.

Take your two pieces of cord and hold the middle of both in the palm of your hand.

Make an eye by turning a length of paracord (the end BEHIND your hand) counterclockwise.

Take the end that hangs from your the palm of your hand and insert it into the upper left corner of the knot (This knot is called the "Anchor Knot", its normally used to connect very thick lines).

Now take both hanging ends and bring them 180 degree counterclockwise around the knot and pull the ends through the center of the knot (from the under side).

Like this....

Now pull SLOOOOWLY and gently....

Until it looks like this.

Add caption

Now onwards: Hold the diamond knot like this.

Pull tight.

Now to the arms: The diamond knot gives you 4 ends, take two ends and tie them together like this.

And then make an overhand knot with the left side going UNDER the main string, and then OVER again...and then UNDER/OVER /UNDER etc etc

("Survival Bracelets" are made the same way!)

That`s the first arm!

Do the Japanese Knot again with the 4 ends meeting in the centre.

Now follow up with a "Round Platting"

Until its long enough.

Take the 4 ends and create 2 arms, longer ones this time.

Reconnect the 4 ends in the middle with a Japanese Knot.
Finish with a Diamond Knot.
Done! :-)

Sunday, December 3, 2017

BCB Barley Sugar

As every survivalist I like the idea of low volume/high calorie emergency food: Preferably with no "best before date" and in a container able to withstand an atomic blast. I got pretty close with SCH-KA-KOLA but think I reached the ultimate with BCB`s Barley Sugar.

Barley sweets are traditional hard candy from the UK and are literally made for eternity and are so high in glucose that they can cure a hungover in seconds and give off so much energy within extreme short time that it should be on the OLC`s black list. (My Scottish colleagues call them "Fisherman's Speed")

Anyhow, I finally got my hands on some tins with Barley Sugar and am well pleased: The taste is dangerously pleasant and they (the Barley Sweets) are tightly packed in a container, which looks like that one can drive a car over it.

Lars LIKE! :-)

The BCB Barley Sugar where it belongs: In a rescue scenario
The sturdy can is sealed with waterproof tape.
BCB Barley Sugar unboxed.
My only problem: The seal is broken and I think I need all my willpower not to eat it all....

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Communication - Body Signals

 I don`t want to cause a panic: But there might be a time when your telephone aka "highly-advanced-pocket-computer-with-which-you-can-access-all-accumulated-knowledge-in-human-history-but-use-to-watch-cat-videos-and-bicker-about-who`s-misinformaton-is-the-BEST-misinformation" might not work as intended.

In fact: There might be a time where your iPhones greatest qualities might be the highly polished backside, so it can be used as shaving/signal mirror. Yes, I am talking about the total failure of all communication networks!

So you should know at least the most basic forms of communication: From one-way communication to morse. (Stick with me and I`ll show you a method with which you can learn the entire morse alphabet + 10 to 20 handy letter codes from the "International Signal Handbook" 

(In my time in the Navy I served as Signal Gast for the "special dudes" so I had to learn the signal handbook by heart....and yes, those "special dudes" also wore helmets. But I am afraid that THEIR crayons were very, very sharp and could only paint in red. Scary characters, fun times.)

Let`s start with the most basic of signals: Body signals with which you can establish a one-way communication with airplanes. I will also show you how airplanes might respond to these signals...LATER!

Oh, and try practice these signals in rapid succession while listening to any hard pumping music of your choosing....FEEL THE BURN!

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Roper 26 - Also Caucasian Mafia Brats Dream Of Electric Buddies part 2

"Fuck L.! Did you HAD to set fire to them?!" M. said rubbing her shoulder.

We stood outside over the corpses of the 4 men from the truck stop, it has only been two days since our last run in with those guys...but it seemed like month.

L. stood and swayed before he doubled over and plastered his dinner all over the patio.

"THAT was LOUD!" it/she boomed over the houses speakers "Aaaaaaand no I am receiving calls from the security company. Hold on."

A few seconds went by, the only sounds I could hear over a monumental ringing was the crackling bonfire in one of the guys chest cavity, caused by M.`s monster rifle.

"Convinced security that everything is ok, the neighbors however are a different matter. They called the local fuzz about what they think are poachers. I suggest you clean up, before the local copper arrives. ETA 57 minutes. There is a root cellar 30m South of you. Thank god for wealthy hipsters huh? You can drag the corpses there ...after you PUT OUT THE FIRES!"

Ca 20 minutes earlier

Like with many guys who grew too much too fast,  L. was clumsy and very much self aware about that. You can easily spot them, they move as if they are in a claustrophobic room full of tiny porcelain figures. Funny thing is that the same clumsy guys can have weird "episodes" where they can flip a coin into a beer glass from a 10 m distance. Those prodigal fits of extreme coordination/social skills  mostly come  when they are distracted or feeling unobserved.

I knew L. had one of his episodes when we sat down at the large oak tree table, facing the large glass doors to the patio.

M. enjoyed her role as robber princess and had her sawn off Nagant on the table, pointing at us, as we ate the decadent pre-prepared meal.

L.`s eyes lost focus as he cocked his head to one side, looking very much like a dog trying to listen very hard, and dreamingly reached out for the rifle as he unfolded his large frame and tipped over the heavy table as if it was an ironing board.

M. screamed and kicked L. several time in the gut as she tried to reclaim her gun but was brushed aside by a hand the size of a toilet seat. I could only sit with  Scandinavian design  fork cutlery in my hand and stare as my tuna mousse/kobe steak symphony went ballistic.

He stood ramrod straight and still for a second, suddenly lifted the heavy gun with a straight arm and blew the glass door out in the garden as a giant, hastily expanding ball of fire emerged from his hand.

I could not hear the screams of terror or the sporadic return fire as my ears were pretty much leveled with the perverse gun and  sweet lady tinnitus sang to me as three more fireballs bathed the garden in orange, apocalyptic light...


M. poured the decanter with water from the  Antarctic shelf into the smoldering chest cavity of the last thug as we took him by arms and legs to throw him to his buddies in the root cellar.

She was visibly shaken and had reclaimed the rifle. She now carried it in a make shift carrier rig that went from under her left arm pit, behind her neck and ended in the rifle dangling on her right side. Pretty nifty, have to remember that, I thought.

She wasn`t too shaken to ransack the corpses and sat surrounded by expensive looking wallets and even more guns and counted money.

"Jeez, I thought we looted those guys GOOD. But less than one day later they come fully restocked, feeling kinda like having slaughtered the golden goose here."

L. looked like he was about to puke again at the mention of "slaughter" as Hacker Girls (at this point of time we ...L. and I...were convinced that she was some kind of high profile hacker) voice came to live over the houses numerous speakers: "Shut up for a second and start to look entitled, 3 coppers coming up the driveway. Loose those guns and start to do some luxury-hipster shit!"

The sun rose over a beautiful meadow and the houses windows looked like as if they were filled with pink fire as they reflected the dawning morning. Looking at this marvel  I started to wonder if I would make a good prison wife.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Viva Maria! (1965)

Viva Maria! is an anti-establishment comedy set in the early 20th centuries San Miguel, a fictive Latin American country

Maria 2, the fugitive daughter of a recently killed Irish anarchist, seeks refuge in a traveling circus and gets it by Maria 1, a singer/dancer.

They agree to gang up and start to perform together, due to their accidental invention of the striptease (and social involvement) they become immensely popular with the impoverished locals, who pay the admittance to the two Maria`s show with poultry...or whatever they have.

Their popularity make them figureheads for the socialist revolutionaries and soon they are actively involved in the struggle to topple "El Dictator": Organizing the peasants, establishing a quasi-socialist state, disregarding the constabulary and dancing/singing. 


Even though this movie is one of my favorites ("favorite movie" defines by me buying the DVD) I must admit that, although fun, the plot is a thin cup of tea.

It is saved by the acting of Brigitte Bardot and Jeanne Moreau, not to mention the breathtaking photography of Henri Decaë.

One of those movies you love to watch after NYE.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Kelly Kettle Hack No. 3 - Vinegar & Baking Soda

I love my Kelly Kettle and try to raise the bar for what is possible with it, by inventing/improvising new recipes. Check out my bread made on a Kelly Kettle: Kelly Kettle Hack No. 2 - Baking Bread

So yeah, cooking with it is fun...and if I find a way to cook our Christmas dinner on it...I`ll probably do it!

What`s not so fun is the CLEANING afterwards. I know there are purists who claim that the layer of soot on the inner side of a Kelly makes it "real"...or that the patina makes it bulletproof. But I like my gear to be clean & ready to use at any time so cleaning is a MUST.

I pretty much tried everything from normal dishwashing soap to fireplace cleaners: All worked, but only after you invested a lot of elbow grease (did I mention my superpower? Lazyness?) and a large amount of "hard" chemicals used.

Then my better half told me to use baking soda and vinegar. And man...that stuff WORKS!


Tea time at the frozen Paprocany Lake.Beautiful scenery.

But the scenery comes at a price: You are looking at it....

I close the kettles openings with a rubber band and foil.

Turn it upside down and add vinegar.

Add baking soda....

...and watch the volcano errupt.

That`s the stuff! Now let it "work" for a while.

It took me only one (!) swipe with a sponge to get a clean spot like this.