Entries Tagged ‘growing old’

Random Thoughts May 6 2013

Over the past few days I have been thinking about a lot of stuff. A lot of small stuff, to small to make their own post about. So I thought I would combine a lot of small topics into a random thoughts post.Kevin Felts, Blogger and Survivalist

I promised a buddy of mine that I would tone the political stuff down. Rather than posting political topics here, I will keep them on PBJ News.  So here goes.

Video Gaming -I guess it is a matter of me getting older, but fewer and fewer games have that “wow” factor.  Back in the 1980s and 1990s some of my buddies and I could play Atari and Super Nintendo for hours at a time.

Now, its takes a lot of keep me interested in a game.  Borderlands 2 got boring within 2 hours and Skyrim lost it after maybe 2 – 3 hours.  The only game that has been able to keep my interest over the past 3 years had been Left 4 Dead 1 & 2.  Since Diablo III has the always on internet requirement I did not even bother buying it.

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Said Goodbye To A Friend

Saturday, March 2, 2013 I said goodbye to an old friend.  C.D. Broussard lived life as it was supposed to be lived. He never had a harsh word to say about anyone, not once did I see him get angry. When C.D was at your house you were never bored, as C.D. could carry on a conversation with anyone. Whether it was computers, comic books, video games,,, C.D. knew something about it.

In December 2011 C.D. Broussard was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

He lived the good life,
He fought the good fight,
and now he rest as he has never rested before.

C.D. Broussard lost his struggle with cancer in February 2013.

Several years ago a mutual friend of ours passed away from a sudden heart attack, his name was Joe. At the memorial service and funeral for Joe, C.D. cracked a joke about how much a grease fire there must have been while Joe was being cremated. Joe was a fairly large fellow, as he probably weighed over 400 pounds when he died. We all talked and laughed about how Joe did us a favor being cremated.

That is the way C.D. was, he could find the humor in anything.

A Friend Has Passed Away

Got a phone call from a buddy of mine informing me a mutual friend had passed away.

December 2011 C.D. was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. He had been feeling ill for a long time, maybe 6 months or more. But as most men do, C.D. put off going to the doctor.

He fought the good fight,
He lived life as it should be lived,
Good drink,
Good food,
Good friends.

You will be missed my friend.

Turning 45 Years Old

Today is my birthday, I turned 45 years old.  Depending on how you look at it, turning 45 is either not too bad, or it sucks.

Retirement – One thing that bothers me is I am nowhere near being ready for retirement.  I partially blame myself, but I also blame every 401k management firm I have used.  Since 1994 just about every 401k management firm has lost money, except for the one I am using now.  How am I supposed to save for retirement when the people managing my 401k lose 20% of my money every year?Kevin Felts blogger and survivalist

Something I worry about is if social security is going to be around when I retire?  I know people who have never worked a day in their life and they are drawing social security disability.  I work and pay into the system for some lazy bum to draw benefits?

Working Hard – When I was growing up, kids were told to “grow up, get a job and work hard.”  Because we “worked hard” our efforts would be recognized and we would be rewarded.  I know now that is a lie.  Working hard is a wage slave mentality.  No welding company is going to reward your efforts unless they have to.

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Does The Internet Change Like A Community

Kevin Felts, blogger and survivalistAs I was looking through some older sites, I started thinking about what the heritage of the internet would be without those sites?

For example, for you PC gamers that like to read about gaming history, or like to think about the “good ole days”, what would the internet be without sites like Doomworld.com or planetromero.com.

Quakeworld was wiped clean several years ago.  All that remains is a “QuakeWorld.com.. stay tuned” message. Back in the late 1990s Quakeworld.com was one of the more popular pages on the net.

Back in the 1990s fans sites opened right and left at free hosting providers. The main free hosting provider back in those days was GeoCities. But GeoCities closed a few years ago. All of those fan sites gone in a split second as the servers were unplugged.

Along with geocities, also went a vast amount of time, effort and internet history. Gone are the walk-throughs to Doom, Quake, Diablo, Quake II, Warcraft II,,, and other popular games from the 1990s.

Before geocities was closed in the 2009, sometimes I would land in a fan site that dated back to the 1990s. Reading those sites was like taking a trip back in time. There were some pages that had not been updated in 5, 6, 7 or more years. I wonder if the page was setup by a high school or college kid, then forgotten about?

Those lost geocities pages were like footsteps in the sand. They are only there for a little while, then the sands of time erases them. They only exist now in our memory.

As I drive through my home town of Bridge City Texas, I notice the front of an old store has been reworked, or an old house has been demolished.

The old homes that have been demolished exist only in my memory, much like the websites at geocities.

Just as a community changes, so does the internet. Maybe a friends house burns down, the house is sold, the house is updated with a fresh coat of paint,,, just like what happens to websites.

About 5 years ago or so I was going through a backup of my internet explorer favorites that dated from the late 1990s – early 2000s. The majority if the websites were offline. Those were websites that I used to visit on a regular basis, but had drifted away from.

As I was going through those old bookmarked sites, I found myself getting sad. Some of those sites were like a friends house. You visit the site, and you feel at home.

Maybe the internet is like a community, in that we build relationships with sites, and other people. We all have pages that we visit on a regular basis, just like we visit certain stores and the homes of certain people.

Why Are Some People Full Of Rage

Dealing with the ex-wife again, this time its over a gun she claimed came up missing during the divorce.

What really happened, some people lack a single decent level of respect for other people.

Its simply amazing how someone can warp reality to believe what they want.

This world would be a better place if people would respect others. Is a little respect too much to ask? For some people, yea, asking for respect is a little too much to ask for.

The question I ask, why do people have to act that way? Is it a mental disease, too much lead in the water, genetics, mom do too many drugs while she was pregnant,,,, or something else?

What causes certain people to have a lack (or no) empathy for those around them?

Maybe its a survival thing left over from our primal existence? To survive the ice ages, maybe some people stole from others, instead of working as a team for the betterment of the community.

Does selfishness reach no end?

During the housing collapse of 2008 I think we say a good example of selfishness and a lack of empathy. To the money lenders, people were a loan number and nothing more.

Some people take their actions past empathy, and into a field of hatred.

What makes someone so angry that they lash out at everyone around them? There is no talking, there is nothing but screaming and pure rage.

How can someone live in a constant state of rage?

Most people get mad, then calm down a little while later. But there are some people who never seem to clam down, its as if their life is ruled by rage and screaming fits. How can people live like that?

Maybe its a lack of team spirit? That the people think its them against the world? Maybe they think the world is theirs for the taking? Those other people out there are just in the way and are to be brushed to the side like insects.

Isn’t charity and empathy some of the features that make us human? When we strip those away, what are we?

Turning Points in My Life

As I was reading through an article on Toms Hardware about the greatest video cards of all time, I caught myself looking at the dates on the video cards, and then comparing those dates to things that were happening in my life.

Between 1996 – late 1999 were a great time in my life. My third son had been born in 1994, my daughter had been born in 1996, I had a steady job with good benefits, a little overtime here and there.

I started going to Lamar College in Port Arthur around 1995.  It was time to get out of the welding field, so I went to Lamar to learn computers.

Then there were the video games such as Diablo, Quake, Red Alert, and the camping trips into Orangefield Texas in the mid 1990s.

The early Quakecons were a blast. Driving to Dallas, staying with my buddy “Acid Breath” and his wife for the weekend, those were good times.

Around August 1999 all of that fell apart when I was laid off from Allied Fabrication in Rose City. The company had recently lost a lot of money, I had missed time due to my drinking. When it came time to reduce cost, I and a couple of other people were let go.

In all honesty, I loved working at Allied Fabrication. They were a great group of people that I really liked working for.

Regardless of how much I liked the job, all good things must come to an end.

Towards the end of 1999 and into early 2000, I was feeling really down. The jobs I was able to find sucked – terrible pay, no benefits and really long work hours.

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My Drinking Problem

Middle age sucks. I can look back over my teenage years, my 20, 30s and now I am halfway through my 40s. In January of 2013 I will turn 45 years old.

Besides going into welding, my other major regret is when I started drinking.

Unlike a lot of people I did not drink in my teenage years. I tried a beer when I was around 15 or 16 years old, and the taste was disagreeable.

When I was around 23 years old I went by a corner store in Bridge City Texas, picked up a couple of bottles of Boone’s Farm wine, then went home to have a drink.

Why did I buy a bottle of Boone’s Farm wine? I do not know. Maybe I was bored and looking for something to do?

What I do know, drinking is one of the worst mistakes I have ever made. Drinking has had a negative affect on my health, its not cheap, and its addictive.

At this point in my life I am probably somewhere about 30 – 40 pounds overweight. Lets say I drink 3 or 4 beers, at 100 – 150 calories each, you are talking an easy 300 – 500 extra calories a day. Then when you start adding mixed drinks, the calories really pile on.

When I started drinking around the time I was 23 years old, that is the same time I started having issues with my weight. I put on weight easier then I did before I started drinking.

I wonder how much money I have spent on beer, wine and whiskey over the past 22 – 23 years. I wish I would have never spent a single penny on booze. That money would have been better spent on my kids, or a vacation for the family.

There are so much better things to spend money on besides alcohol. For the price of a 12 pack, I could buy 2 boxes of American Eagle 223 Remington, or 2 boxes of Tula 7.62×39, and have some change left over.

Every time I buy something to drink, I am taking money away from my family and from my prepping resources. And I am ashamed because of that.

Why don’t I just stop drinking? Because I like it too much.

Lets be honest, I have a problem with drinking. I can go a month without having a drink, but when I do drink, I drink until the last drop is gone.

Admitting that there is the problem is the first step to recovery.

This post is my first step to being alcohol free.

My mom and dad read my blog from time to time. I hope this confession does not make them think they failed as a parent, or think less of me.

Life is full of ups and downs, good and bad. Just as we have good things in life, so we must deal with the bad things.

Its not the alcohol that is bad, it is my weakness that is bad.

I wish I could have led a perfect life. Maybe I should have joined the military, went to college, went into something like engineering, waited to have kids,,,,.

Does having an easy life make you strong, or does the struggle make you stronger?

Did mankind conquer the world through living an easy lifestyle? Or did we conquer the world through hard-work?

As long as I beat this drinking problem, I will be a better person in the long run. Its the struggle that makes us stronger. Taking the easy route makes us weaker.

Random Thoughts November 16 2012

Time for another random thoughts post.

The Amazing Spider-man

Bought The Amazing Spider-man for the grandkids to watch. The grandkids are between the ages of 3 and 5 and were not interested in Spider-man. But they can watch The Avengers all day long.

Why did Sony have to go back to Spider-man having an artificial web?

I thought The Amazing Spider-man was a rather bland.  I like how they got away from the Green Goblin and introduced The Lizard.  The original Spider-man movies seem to stuck on the Green Goblin.

Wages Today

A few days ago I was thinking about how much money I was making in the welding shops. In 1987 the top pay of the welding shop I was working at was $11.13 an hour. Minimum wage was $3.35 an hour.

11.13 divided by 3.35 = 3.3223.

In other words, top pay in the welding shop was 3.3223 times minimum wage in 1987.

In 2004 I checked back at that same welding shop, top pay was only around $14 an hour, which was less then 3X minimum wage at the time of $5.15. In other words, wages have not kept up with inflation or minimum wage.

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What I want for Christmas

As the year draws to an end thoughts turn to Thanksgiving and Christmas. It will not be long until Black Friday is here and the Christmas season kicks off.

In the next few weeks my mom and my wife will be asking me what I want for Christmas.

So what do I want for Christmas?

I want peace on earth and goodwill to all.

I want to be able to let my chickens out and not have to worry about the neighbors.

I want to sit on my deck and listen to the birds.

When I walk outside, all I want to hear is the wind.

I want a garden.

I want to live in peace with nature.

For tens of thousands of years mankind lived in harmony with nature – we grew our own food, foraged, hunted, fished,,,. That is the kind of lifestyle I wish to return to.

What do I want for Christmas? To live life the way it was intended to be lived.

The 1980s seem so long ago

Why do the 1980s seem so long ago?  But then again, it seems like only a few weeks ago I was finishing high school and entering the workforce.

In all honesty I miss the 1980s.  I do not miss how Reganomics destroyed the ship building industry in southeast Texas, particularly in Beaumont and Orange Texas.

I miss the music,
I miss skinny women,
I miss talking to people face-to-face,
I miss how people had real interaction with each other, interaction that has been replaced by the internet,
I miss cheap gas,
I miss the friendships I had in school,
Did I mention the music?

The 80s had some great music, great clothes, we knew had to have fun without drugs.

Have I mentioned the music,

Then came President Bush I, and that clinton guy and his wife.

The only things that made the 1990s good were the video games. Everything else pretty much sucked. Two of my children were born in the 1990s, so my kids are something good that came out of the 1990s.

The 2000s were worse the the 1990s, which means the 2000s were a lot worse the the 1980s.

Here we are in the 2010s and things really suck. China has our jobs, we have a sock puppet for a president, and the other guy running for office seems worse then the sock puppet.

Can we hit the reset button and go back to at least the late 1970s?

The nation I remember from the 1980s is nothing like what we see today. Crime, especially corporate crime seems much worse now then it did in the 1980s. Maybe if we let a few banks fail they will stop making bad investments.

In the 1980s we were a proud nation. Today, we are the laughing stock for the rest of the world.

Can we go back to the 80s when the USA was a world leader?

What did you want to be when you grew up

While I was growing up adults and teachers asked me what I wanted to do when I grew up.  What I really wanted to do was Anthropology, the study of ancient civilizations.

My other choices were to do something with the outdoors, or to create something, such as a scientist.

When I finished high school I took a job at a welding shop, which was not even something I had considered.

In the 1990s I looked into opening some kind of outdoor gear review magazine.  But the magazine was cost prohibitive.  The companies that would print the magazines wanted a couple of hundred thousand dollars up front, and that was even before I found anyone that would carry the magazines.

From the mid 1990s to the mid 2000s, I was waiting for something to come along on the internet that would help me build a website.  There was basic HTML sites, but I wanted something that was dynamic and able to handle steady updates.

In early 2006 I opened the forum.  Later that same year I opened the blog but in a different format then what we see today.

Between the forum and the blog, I have achieved something I have wanted to do since I was a kid.  I get to go play in the woods, then write about it.

Creating content on youtube, the forum and the blog is like a scientist creating something.  I do my research, do my observations, then write about my opinion on the research and observations.

The internet has given me the ability to express myself like a real-life job would never have.

Reaching middle age

At 44 years old, chances are I have more years behind me then in front of me. I feel no different then I did when I was in my 20s, except that I need more sleep and my weight is getting more difficult to control.

When I was 17, 18, 19,, years old I could eat just about anything I wanted. Now I eat that kind of stuff and my stomach hurts. Eat some greasy chicken nuggets and my stomach gets tore up.

Instead of thinking about what I wanted to do when I grow up, I am thinking about my retirement in 20 years. Its simply amazing how the years creep by unnoticed.

When I look back, I realize how I was totally unprepared to enter the workforce in the mid-1980s. Besides reading, writing and math, the public school system taught no real life skills. Mom and dad were at work, so the time they had to teach life skills was limited.

In my late teens and early 20s I thought the thing to do was to get married and have kids. So do you have kids when you are financially stable, or when you are young and healthy? I picked to have kids when I was young and healthy. Some of the people I went to school with have kids in jr. high, while all but one of mine have finished high school.

I wish society had not lied to me about the value of hard work. Society says if you work hard, that work will be recognized and rewarded. Rewarded with what, a life of poverty?

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Food makes you fat

boogie2988 makes another great video about his life, and the struggle with his weight.

I have to admire boogie2988 for his honesty and the humor in his videos.

To live in peace and quiet

To live in peace and quiet,

To live with a garden to raise my food, with my chickens for eggs and meat,

To live where the wind blows, where the trees talk and the birds sing,

To be away from the worries of man,  to be away from the sounds of the city,

In peace and quiet is where I wish to be.