Archive for January, 2020

Preparation For The Big One

For those who might follow my blog, I have to admit that we live in the North American Northwest and particularly in the region that is expecting a major earthquake sometime in the future.

As they keep telling us, it is not “if”  it is ‘when’.

Easy to trivialize this, but when it happens we could have a problem.  Granted we live 100 meters above sea level (so unlikely Tsunami)  and our home was built to the BC earthquake requirements, but it could be a traumatic event when it happens.

Pat and I attended a presentation about how to prepare our home and life for the cataclysmic event.    Make sure you have water and food and protection but how do you protect yourself from the loss of electricity and gas.  Do not even go there for having shotguns to protect our little bit of resources from zombies… but that is another concern.

A recommendation was to secure a device that was not dependent on batteries that might lie in our collapsed home.  A device that could not be destroyed by a Neutron bomb.

Today I purchased a machine that will be a great asset when the major event takes place.  It has a hand crank that powers a flashlight and a radio and power to recharge our cell phone as well as those who have a smartphone. Just a few cranks and we can search for any civilization that still exists.

Granted we may have to hide it from the hoards of desperate people in the event of a huge earthquake trying to recharge their devices so they can Facebook, but I have a Machete.

Reese’s Door to Summer

Well the mild green winter finally came to an end today in Paradise.  Woke up to heavy snowfall this morning.  I went to the fitness club at 7 am but by the time I came home I advised Pat not to venture out as the snow was coming down hard and the roads were slippery.

So aside from Pat taking a quick trip to the grocery store for supplies, we hunkered down.  By 5 PM I figured I had to fire up the snowblower and try to clear a path.  Measured snow in the front yard was at least 10 inches deep.  Fortunately it was a cold – 6 C.  I realize not that cold but cold enough that the snow was still light and fluffy and no wind. Could blow the snow a long way.

I spent over an hour doing our driveway and some sidewalks and came home looking like the abominable snowman.  Still snowing as I write this so I expect I will have to repeat in the morning.

But poor Reese has not been out much today.  So at 7:30 I bundled up and took her out to do her business.  She was eager but confused.  She immediately ran down the driveway and across the street to the stretch of grass beside the hedge where she normally does her business.  Jumped in and was up to her eyes in snow.  She turned to me in total shock.  What has happened?

Reminds me of a Sci Fi book I read as a kid by Robert Heinlein “A Door into Summer”.  He had a cat that made him open every door in the house in the winter trying to find the one that lead to the summer that she loved.  Reese has not had snow in the yard for almost a year and not this deep for many years.

She ran back into the house figuring that her favorite Grannie Pat could do a better walk than I did.  Going to be an interesting evening.  Backyard is a foot deep.

Good Getting Old

Sometimes it is good that I am getting old and no longer have to keep up with the latest technology.

I was reading in the Economist about the commercialization of Quantum Computers.  These are going to be life changers.  Imagine the biggest computer you can think of.  The IBM super computer for instance operated by the US NSA with millions of chips.  Quadrillions of bytes if you can get your mind around it.  Well you would have to have a Super Computer  the size of North America to match the computing power of the Quantum Computers.

They are so fast that there is no encryption that is safe.  Blackberry messages can be broken in seconds.  You can determine the final number in Pi.  Every secret can be determined.

What is the DNA sequence of every human being,  where is all the money stored by criminals… what are the true odds that the Maple Leafs win the Stanley cup… where is Jimmy Hoffa buried (actually I know that one as we watched the movie The Irishman)  what is the secret of life?

The scary part is that there will be no secrets.  Your 8 digit code to get into your bank account, 5 seconds of work to discover.  Your email access trivial.  Finger prints and eye scans may be needed but within a few years not good enough.  May have to go back to keeping your money under the mattress.

How is a normal human being going to keep up.  I mean when I see Janine talking to her wristwatch and checking her text messages, I realize I am falling behind.

Good thing I am getting older and will not have to experience all this.


Little Cabins

I have completed the erection of the small cabins on the Mathew.  And I do mean small.  The smallest one in real life would have been about 5 feet by 8 feet, but then guys were much smaller in 1497.  Each of the doors swing open and closed, a neat trick.

I show you this picture because once I put on the deck beams and planking these cabins will never be seen again.

Dog Walking in the Rain

It is a miserable evening in Paradise.   A Pacific storm is bringing in rain and wind.

Strangely yesterday was a perfect winter day.  Blue skies and no wind although a cool 0 C.  Our hiking group had a great day.  But we had been warned that there was a storm coming.

We in Paradise came off much better than Vancouver.  Blaine had to use his new snowblower to heroically clear the area to allow emergency vehicles to get into his neighborhood … well that may be exaggerated.

Here we just had cold rain and wind.  As a result Reese did not get her walks today.  But she needed relief.

So after dinner I bundled up and took her for a walk in her raincoat.  Now she could have cooperated by doing her business in our front yard.. but no.  We had to head through the rain and wind until she found the perfect piece of lawn a few blocks away that she needed.  We made it back home.

Of course my fans will realize I was doing this while the wife was policing the area and doing the dishes.

Reese is relaxing in front of the fireplace and I am about to join her.