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Operation Keep Jeff Informed
news : by Tommy - May 12th 2008, 04:07PM
news
My brother Jeff (Grimlen) is at Basic Training at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma for the summer. He is a cadet with the SFA ROTC and will be serving with the Nacogdoches National Guard until he graduates. After he completes Basic, he will go on to Advanced Individualized Training (AIT) to learn the skills necessary to be a Forward Observer.

As many of you know, while you're at basic no cell phones, computers or TVs are allowed - only mail. This will remove Jeff from being able to view neodux or catch up on any news. So I'm hereby establishing a summer project called "Keep Jeff Informed" where the neodux community will post news summaries, image macros and other bits of information he needs to stay "up" on while away at Ft. Sill, OK.

I will, from time to time, copy/paste new posts from this thread to a Word document that I will print off and send to him. At Basic, sometimes recruits are required to read their mail from home to the other recruits aloud while in formation, so the more bizarre/insane it is, the better. Try to reduce the size of large macros so that I can squeeze text around it to conserve space. (Army-related macros get priority)

One again, this is the thread to post in, not the comments of this post.

( Comments : 1 | Full article )

 
Double Edge Safety Razor pt 2
news : by Tommy - May 4th 2008, 02:20PM
news
Continuation from "Double Edge Safety Razor" part 1 and continued on part 3.

I survived my initial shaving with the new Merkur Heavy Classic razor. The Merkur HD really is a fun shave (sounds goofy I know) but there's something fun about vintage shaving. I got the hang of the "shaving angle" in short time and was able to shave "upside down" before I finished.

It did take me about twice as long to shave with this style razor, but part of that was me being careful and getting used to the new technique. These blades are also not meant to be fast, but to make a clean cut with several successive passes. The learning curve isn't steep at all. I just had to remember not to press down and to hold the blade at the proper angle. The "safety razor" prevents you from cutting yourself if the angle is too steep, as you might do with a straight razor. All of this, of course, is helped if you have a proper lather with good shaving soap.

I'm sure I'll get quicker with the shave as I get more practice. The shave does seem to be closer in spots, I missed a few of the "tricky" spots - they're just not as smooth. For now I'm happy I didn't have any knicks or cuts.

More to come after my next shave...

tags: razor shaving

( Comments : 1 | Full article )

 
Double Edged Safety Razor
news : by Tommy - April 29th 2008, 12:54AM
news
That's it. I've had all I can stand. Gillette Mach3 blades are to the point where they're losing me as a customer. The package at the store tonight said "Now in 5 pack!". Why are they giving me a 5th blade? Because they've raised the price to $11.25. (That over $2 per blade!)

Granted, I was totally out of blades at the moment so I bought them. I'm hoping they'll be my last for a long time because tonight I bit the bullet and shelled out $50 for a new "old-fashioned" safety razor (blades for this one are around $0.15 per blade).

Years ago Araolath told me he was wanting an old-fashioned razor and that I should check them out. So I've been partly interested in them off and on for quite a while now. I've just never had much reason to switch. Now I do.

They say it takes a while to get used to the new way of shaving and to just take it slow at first. Well, with summer upon us, I will have time to hide my soon-to-be-butchered face while I relearn shaving. My uneven "missed a spot" shaving pattern will also be worthy of staying home for. So what better time to start than summer?

I've been watching videos by this guy on YouTube, mantic, that has a good collection of shaving videos. He recommended a few different models of razors, various blades and techniques that are echoed on other howto sites. So if you're interested, yourself, check out some of his stuff for a good starting point.

Continued at "Double Edge Safety Razor" part 2 & part 3.

tags: razor shaving

( Comments : 9 | Full article )

 
The Right Camping Gear
outdoors : by Tommy - March 30th 2008, 09:37PM
outdoors
I've been on a camping kick recently and realized last week that having the right gear makes a huge difference in comfort. About 2 weeks ago for a pre-Spring Break camping trip, we went with some friends up to Beaver's Bend, Oklahoma. While we were there the zipper on my sleeping bag broke. I didn't have a sleep-mat so, needless to say, I had a very lousy night. After we got back I ordered a nice Slumberjack mummy bag that actually fits my tall frame.

Last weekend we went to Caddo Lake State Park here in Texas. I picked up a cheap $5 foam mat at Walmart, which wasn't the softest but it was better than nothing. The new Slumberjack bag was downright awesome - I've never slept so comfy in a tent before. It was while laying in my new bag that I realized it's all about having the right gear.

That was it, for my birthday I wanted the right gear. My birthday came early this year in the form of an additional paycheck from some extra hours I picked up. We went to Whole Earth Provision Company and REI in Dallas this past weekend in search of a few essentials. I first picked up a nice, new Kelty Coyote backpack for containing all my new loot. The sales rep at REI loaded me down with about 30lbs. After getting the pack adjusted I walked around the store, it was wonderful. Again, it was all about the right gear. I also picked up a Thermarest sleeping pad to cushion me from the ground. I can't express how awesome these mats are - You just have to feel them, otherwise you won't understand. Never again will my back sleep on terra firma.

Another problem I ran into while at Caddo Lake was poor cookware.

Continue reading...

tags: camping gear

( Comments : 4 | Full article )

 
Hummingbirds
outdoors : by Tommy - March 12th 2008, 02:48PM
outdoors
It's 2008 Hummingbird season. Depending on where you live you can expect the influx of hummingbirds in your vicinity very soon. Being in northeast Texas, I anticipate that I'll have them here sometime within the next 2 days.

My feeders are ready to go. I dug them out, cleaned them up and checked their hanging hooks. I mixed up a batch of hummingbird nectar (see below) and filled one feeder up. The others will come out after I see the first hummers here. Walmart has some great wide-mouth feeders for less than $4 that are super easy to clean and plenty of feeder holes. If you have a window that's easy to get to, why not put up a hummingbird feeder. They're one of the best forms of entertainment while sitting outside doing nothing. The little birds will dive-bomb each other and dog-fight all around you trying to protect their precious sugar water.

Hummingbird nectar recipe
1c table sugar (don't use honey or any other sugar)
4c tap water (nothing special here)

You can make more, just keep the 1:4 ratio. Stir the sugar until it dissolves in the water. Don't use red food coloring - it isn't needed and can be bad for the birds. You don't have to boil it either. If you do, just remember not to put boiling hot water in your feeder! Store any leftover nectar in a 2 liter bottle in the fridge until needed. Check your feeder every few days for any signs of contamination (bacteria and mold love sugar water). If it is dirty, empty the feeder rinse it out (don't use soap!) and refill.

To find out when hummingbirds will be in your neck of the woods, check out this cool migration map (if you're out west, you get birds too), and here's a some video of hummingbirds from YouTube.

Continue reading...

( Comments : 7 | Full article )

 
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