Global Skywatch

Ted’s essays

exploding heads

Another one bites the dust… The Snowflake Generation The ME Generation The Don’t tell me NO generation The Everyone is a Winner generation The Trust the officials, don’t trust your parents generation However you slice it, the middle aged people today are not the same as they were a generation ago. A man is as good as his word. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Give more than you receive. It is this latter one that has come into question today after a third close, dear “millenial” blew up on me this year. In each case I have replayed the incident and all the preceding baggage I can conjure up only to find no […]

getting to know our good neighbors

Six months ago I bought a pair of custom topographical maps. One is my Area Of Interest (AOI) – that included my super-vulnerable home and our bug-out location, the homestead we bought and “rented” to offspring. The other map was a much more usable scale covering our Area Of Operations (AOO), that is the homestead neighborhood. See more detail here: mapping your neighborhood Because the kids are of the Snowflake Generation, the Me Generation, run to the tune of The World Owes Me A Living, the rental has become our new home. We are as busy as one-armed-paper-hangers cleaning up, remodeling and moving in. This has increased my focus on our AOO. It occurred to me that our podunk county […]

become an amateur radio operator

Thursdays 4:30-6:30pm Darby Library meeting room July 13th – September 7th Handy in many situations, radio communications can be life saving when phones and Internet are down or out of reach Ham radios start where walkie-talkies leave off, with licensed radio operators communicating around the corner and around the world. ARRL License Manual costs $29.95 includes chapters on every aspect of the licensing exam and numerous practice tests Darby Thursday study sessions are FREE YOU can be an amateur radio operator No electronics background required Click this link for a .pdf poster advertising the class:Ham-radio-class-poster-7-2017 Below is a .jpg image of the class advertisement. TESTING SESSION JULY 17th For those ready to test for Technician, General or Amateur Extra […]

Become a HAM radio operator

Thursdays 4:30-6:30pm Darby Library meeting room July 13th – September 7th Handy in many situations, radio communications can be life saving when phones and Internet are down or out of reach Ham radios start where walkie-talkies leave off, with licensed radio operators communicating around the corner and around the world. ARRL License Manual costs $29.95 includes chapters on every aspect of the licensing exam and numerous practice tests Darby Thursday study sessions are FREE YOU can be an amateur radio operator No electronics background required Click below for a .pdf poster advertising the class Ham radio class poster 2017

trombone trio

After four years of wishing I could find, and looking for someone to play trombone with, I began growing my own trombone trio. I found a couple of lads interested in learning, gave them each a trombone and began giving lessons near weekly. As with nearly everything else I do, I am underqualified, but the best I can find who will actually get the job done. In this case, both are in homeschooled families, so I am The Music Department of their school. I bought other instruments, and gave a few lessons, but the trombonists are the only ones who have stuck with it, now going on five months. We recently got into the more enjoyable phase where we can […]

my first 1K

I thought of myself as a 600-yard rifleman. In DCM, CMP and NRA High Power competitions, the 600 yard target we shoot at is labeled “MR1”. That stands for “medium range”, standard target. Thus I don’t get an inflated ego from hitting that sucker on a known-distance course of fire. Upon selling The Gentleman Farmer business I owned/operated for 22 years, my gold watch was a nice trombone and a nice rifle. Two tools I had long wished for but never afforded (best boss I ever had). My AR-10 and I are awesome at a known distance of 200 yards and quite clearly effective at measured and marked 600 yards. Of course only paper targets are going to present themselves […]

purchase and use of BaoFeng two-way radios

BaoFeng UV-82HP$62.89UHF / VHF128 ChannelsOutput: 7 Watts I have helped well over a dozen people earn their amateur radio licenses. But I recognize the effort to study for, and pass the FCC exam is not for everybody. Much more accessible is The General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS) licensed radio service. A $70 FCC GMRS license has no testing requirements and covers your entire family’s use for 5 years. BAOFENG makes good, affordable radios that can listen to several other bands and legally enable you to transmit, that is communicate, via GMRS channels. Significantly, unlike the inexpensive blister-pack big-box-store radios, these transmit at much higher powers, and are capable of utilizing repeaters for long-distance communications. My favorite of their current offerings […]

mapping your neighborhood

Having the right resources in the right places is the essence of surviving and thriving. Disasters challenge that pleasant place. Proper planning includes mapping resources and features that may be useful to your community in emergencies. Also valuable is placing on that map any threats you know of, along with potential avenues for likely threats. Obviously, so you can plan to minimize their negative impacts on your community. This is a big topic that deserves thought, planning, organization from a handful of proactive, foresightful neighbors. While I can’t help you with that, I can point you to a couple of hugely valuable resources. Samuel Culper publishing in Forward Observer offers A Primer on Tactical Intelligence Collection that is a prize […]