Friday, May 17, 2019

The Awesome IMCO lighter

Everyone is familiar with the beloved Zippo lighter but drop the name “IMCO” and you’ll get a confused face and a “whut??”

It’s a shame though. IMCO started as a company in Austria in 1907 and made the first “trench” lighters in 1918. These were the first true commercial lighters ever made.

IMCO closed as a company in Austria in 2012. They sold the rights to a company in China and the famous lighter is still available at a fraction of the price. If you want the original Made in Austria ones though you’ll have to buy on the used market, with prices already pretty high.
Classics Imco Triplex Super 6700 Stainless Steel Oil Petrol Cigarette Lighter (Type 1)
IMCO lighters have several advantages.
1)They are sturdy as hell. People think Zippos are tough. They are ok but the lid hinge is a natural weak spot and the large metal surfaces can be bent. On the other hand the IMCO is made of folder or rounded metal which gives it much greater structural integrity and takes abuse better.

2)Opens and Lights on one flick of the finger. Its simply faster as it opens and strikes the flint at the same time unlike the two separate operations needed for the Zippo.
3)More reliable ignition. In a Zippo you move the wheel directly with your finger. On the IMCO you have greater leverage and sparks are clearly larger. This causes the IMCO to go through flints a bit faster, but then again it requires less attempts to lit.
4)Easy to replace flints. Just open the compartment and drop it there. Close it and you’re done.
5)Storage compartment for a spare flint.

6)Can be used as a candle by removing the fuel tank. This can be very handy at times and extends the utility off the lighter to be used as a candle or small torch.
7)Much better fuel run. A Zippo dries up in about a week or two while an IMCO with its smaller wick lid can keep running for about a month.

8)Adjustable flame. On Super Triplex models, the wind shield allows you to adjust the flame.
If you like traditional lighters, give the IMCO a try.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, May 13, 2019

Sweden tells its Citizens to stock up Cash

Obverse of the series 2009 $100 Federal Reserve Note.jpg
Cash is indeed King

Sweden's Civil Contingencies Agency is telling residents to stockpile 'cash in small denominations'.

The concern is that in a society that is steadily going cashless, a cyber attack would leave Swedes vulnerable, unable to buy basic supplies or get by during a period of time until things gets sorted out.
It does make perfect senses and this concern Sweden authorities have is one of the reason why a cash stash has been recommended here time and again over the years. In a society were a growing number of people aren’t using cash at all, it is understandable to make such warnings and its worth repeating yet again: Cash is king and make sure to always have some at hand. Start with a small fund and try to build up to a month worth of expenses.

Remember to get a proper safe for your valuables, not just cash but jewellery, precious metals and important documents. A small safe like this Digital Safe goes for under 40 bucks. At the very least, get one like this if you dont have a safe already.

Better yet, get a proper Gun Cabinet Safe so as to keep your firearms in as well. These wont break the bank and will make the difference if someone breaks into your place.
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Video: Learning From a Shooting in Brazil

Take a look at how this goes down.
The criminal has a 38 revolver, the woman a 380ACP pistol.
She does well at staying calm and actually aiming, hits him in the back and he goes down, dies on the way to the hospital later on. The husband reacts very well and takes the bad guy's revolver.
In spite of staying calm (important) and a bit of luck on her side (criminal just ignoring her completely) she does have a poor grip on the gun and likely gets hit on the thumb with the slide. She jerks the gun back after that one shot she fires. Lucky for her, she didnt need another shot to stop the
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, May 6, 2019

What Is the Safest Seat on a Plane?

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Cellphone stops bullet, saves woman’s life (for real!)

Sólo fue un susto. Nancy apenas tuvo unos raspones.

La ropa de la mujer quedó quemada.
This happened in Tucumán, Argentina a couple days ago.

A women was mugged and the bastard shot her while fighting over her cellphone.
In what I can only assume is a typical instinctive reaction of bringing your hands up to defend yourself, the phone was shot and the bullet didnt have enough strength to seriously wound her, only suffering minor cuts along her arm and abdomen.

The hole looks small, most likely 22LR. Even if just a 22, that’s some serious luck. Must have been with the phone at an angle, the round further losing velocity along the arm (maybe clothes) and then hitting her abdomen with low enough velocity. Or maybe the bullet just fragmeneted a lot when hitting the battery, Gorilla glass backed by a screen protector.

Its very interesting. Look at how big that exit hole is. The phone did a far better job than I'd think.
Anyway, she should try getting a few lottery tickets as well!


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

War in Venezuela

Un manifestante de la oposición es atropellado por un vehículo de la Guardia Nacional de Venezuela en una calle cerca de la base aérea "La Carlota" de Caracas, Venezuela, 30 de abril de 2019. REUTERS / Ueslei Marcelino

Maduro’s goons running over civilians with armored vehicles.

The time to fight and finally get rid of that dictator is NOW.

Good luck Venezuelans!


Monday, April 29, 2019

If I could Only have one knife for the End of the World...

Talk about a nightmare...

Only one? You've got to be kidding. Still, fair enough question.
What if? What if you have to leave, on foot, not knowing where you are going and what will happen to you next. Not knowing if that knife will be used to defend yourself, build a shelter, fire, cut a hole through a wall/car/boat to escape, prepare food, carve wood, gut game, eat your dinner. And what if that's the only knife you'll have for the rest of your life?
A bit of a less painfull thought, lets make it three.

These are the three I'd go for. Busse Bushwacker Battle Mistress. Dog Soldier 8 and Leatherman Wave (Black oxide) although my Charge tti is a slightly better option.
Forced to chose just one? Dog Soldier 8. Big enough, small enough. The goldielocks size for a do it all knife with the right blade steel, geometry, finish and the right grip shape and material.
More of a tight budget proposition?

Cold Steel Bowie machete , Glock Survival knife $28.79 and Leatherman Sidekick $55.95. For little over a hundred bucks you have a setup to deal with everything knife related.
Forced to chose one? You cant go wrong with the Glock knife. Like the pistol, Its a beast of a knife yet light and well priced.
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Turns Out Communism is kind of Great!

A mansion located in Havana is being listed by Raúl Castro's granddaughter for $650 a night on Airbnb

If you are a corrupt communist leader, that is.


Reading your most recent post about how innovative ordinary Cubans have to be.
But the New Class does not suffer the same hardships as the common man…in Cuba or the other egalitarian communist paradises…
Castro's luxurious Havana mansion which boasts Jacuzzi, private terraces and four bedrooms is being rented for $650 a night by the Cuban leader's granddaughter on an island ravaged by poverty and food crisis
  • Vilma Rodríguez is listing a lavish residence located in Havana, Cuba, which is being rented for $650 a night on Airbnb
  • Rodríguez is the granddaughter of former president Raúl Castro and operates her business from Panama
  • The mansion is readily available for up to 10 guests and features four bedrooms, including two master bedrooms, a jacuzzi, and five and a half bathrooms
  • The United States imposed an economic trade embargo in 1962 under President John F. Kennedy, and since then most of the island's 12million residents live in poverty
  • Basic food items such as bread, meats and eggs have become scarce of the last couple of years
An Airbnb posting of a mansion in Havana is showing just how far the Cuban regime is willing to go to enrich its pockets on an island where ordinary residents are struggling to feed themselves.
Vilma Rodríguez, the granddaughter of former president and current First Secretary of the Communist Party, Raul Castro, is listing a luxurious residence on the global online marketplace that as of Thursday morning was fetching $650 a night.
The homeowner, who is based out of Panama according to her Airbnb profile, bills the lavish Caribbean home as 'Casa Vida Luxury Holidays' or 'Dream Home Luxury Holidays.'
'In Casa Vida, elegance, design, and tradition come together to create cheerful, spacious, and luminous spaces,'  Rodríguez wrote as part of her home's profile.
Rodríguez is not the only member from the Castro clan that has benefited from the communist family's coffers despite sanctions imposed by the Washington.
Tony Castro, grandson of the late Fidel Castro, drew the ire of the Cuban exile community in January after an Instagram follower of the aspiring model shared photographs of the young man flaunting his wealth on overseas trips.
Raúl Castro succeeded his brother Fidel as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba in 2011.
The 87-year-old holds the most senior position in the communist party and has absolute power of the country.

Thanks for your email.

Yes, communisim sounds great as long as you're the one making billions out of it.

It’s also amazingly inefficient. For the millions of people that it enslaves, you’d think they’d have an actual “mansion”. That’s a rather tacky 4 bedroom house, certainly not a “luxurious mansion”. Bet they have billions squirreled away in accounts all over the world though.
Very communist of them to amass all that capital…


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, April 22, 2019

Cool Download: Free .pdf Cuban manual on DIY and other Improvisation tips.


I have been enjoying your videos and their very informative content....I ran across this video series and was impressed by how the Cuban's have creatively adapted to their isolation in a technologically advancing world....please do not post my name on the may post it as Felixdacat if you wish...I hope the content of the Cuba videos will motivate you to conceptualize appropriate technologies to include in your new of luck and please keep your videos flowing...



Thank you for your email!

The video is quite good, worth the 8 minutes for sure.

My upcoming book is shaping up nicely. I’m sure people will like it. It will have plenty tips and tricks people can put to use, especially in regards to security, awareness, self defense, driving and SHTF in general. It will complement my first book nicely, “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse”, with practical information.

It’s interesting to see how people get creative to find solutions when they lack resources. I’ve seen many similar things done in Argentina. Maybe not so much because of complete lack of availability like in Cuba but because the prices were beyond the capabilities of so many.

The two books he mentions “El Libro de la Familia” and “Con Nuestros Propios Esfuerzos”, these are books on tips and advice, basically DIY for Cubans that need to pretty much improvise with anything and everything they get hold of. The first one seems to mostly “borrow” from Popular Mechanics and similar publications, the second one is advice from Cubans themselves on how to improvise on several fields from tools, making toys, transportation, health, food and so on.

The first book “El Libro de la Familia” isn’t available, couldn’t find a PDF or even a copy to buy anywhere. If anyone has a pdf link or a copy they are willing to sell I’d love to get one.
The second book, “Con Nuestros Propios Esfuerzos” that one I did find a link to and its free to download:
Of course it’s in Spanish but it’s mostly short lines and paragraphs which you should understand even with basic Spanish. Some of the cooking recipes are even easier to understand since they mostly just list the ingredients.

I found these to be rather interesting from a survival perspective, how to be creative with limited ingredients.
Anyway, hope everyone had a great Easter and if you know even basic Spanish the book is well worth downloading.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Friday, April 19, 2019

Mini EDC Combo Review: Klarus Mini One Ti & Victorinox Manager

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Conceal Carry Safety Concerns

Hello Fernando,
I greatly appreciate your blog and your advice. I have read some of your posts on the subject of firearm safety (ex. and I know you advocate carrying a safety-less gun such as a Glock in a holster with the chamber loaded. I would like you to address how to carry a smaller concealed weapon safely when holster options are limited. In particular, I would like to carry a compact 380 ACP such as a Ruger LCP in the warmer weather where concealment options are limited. A further limitation is that I don't like to wear shirts untucked. I always wear a button-down shirt tucked into jeans with a belt or sometimes cargo shortls without a belt.

The only options I see are to conceal the pistol in a front pocket in these situations. If this is the only option, then it seems to me that a single action pistol without a safety would be dangerous unless the chamber is empty. Since your opinion is that the chamber should be loaded for firing in an emergency, what would be a safe way to carry or a safer gun to carry, such as a double action only pistol?

In other words, I would like to hear from you the safe practices and options available and that should be employed to ensure an accidental discharge is extremely unlikely. Since my personal experience with firearms is rather limited, I would like to share an analogy in my thinking.
That analogy is locking car doors. In my lifetime (I am 58 years old), I have never had anything stolen from my car, despite leaving it unlocked almost all the time. In contrast, I have been locked out of my car several times (in the few instances where I have locked it) and I have known many others who have been locked out of houses and cars, but almost never robbed. The conclusion I derive from this experience is that it is better to leave my car unlocked (unless used in a highly dangerous area) than locking it which will surely lead to a lot of inconvenience.

My point is - I see it far more likely for a gun being carried to be accidently discharged than it actually needing to be used. Therefore, it would seem to me to be far more prudent in ensuring no accidental discharge rather than the gun always being in the ready to fire at a moments notice state. While I defer to your expertise and experience, I am also aware that some of your experience is with law enforcement situations in which they are often putting themselves into dangerous situations, need to draw and fire quickly, and can carry openly which provides a much safer carry option. In other words, I don't think law enforcement situations correlate very well with low risk civilian ones. I would rather carry and fail to be able to use the gun than to carry and it go off accidently. Nevertheless, I respect your points and am therefore confused as to the best approach for me.
With that longwinded background, I would appreciate your thoughts and recommendations. Some (but not all) of the things I would like addressed are:
  • How can a Glock/Ruger LCPII type firearm be carried to minimize the risk of accidental pulling of the trigger when concealing in a pants pocket? Are there some other ways to conceal carry that doesn't require a jacket or shirt hanging out?
  • Would a double action only pistol be a better option?
  • What would be a preferred additional safety option - not chambering a round, an external safety, DAO, other?
  • I have heard you and others mention that accidental discharges are prevented by cascade of safeties. They only happen when of all these safeties are broached. Can you list these safeties? While the Glock may have many safeties preventing the gun itself from discharging unless the trigger is pulled, it doesn't seem to have any when the trigger is pulled. So what other safeties prevent this from happening unintentionally? A holster is the only thing I can think of, and in the minimal clothing situation I am talking about, that doesn't seem to be either very viable or helpful.
I apologize for the long rambling note, and I hope you can understand my concerns and questions. I also realize that such a minimal clothing scenario makes for a lot of compromises. Certainly, in an open carry situation, the safest approach would be a revolver, and in such a case, I would not have any concerns or questions. The problem in a nutshell therefore, is how to carry concealed safely and what type of gun should I carry without a jacket or leaving my shirt untucked. A chambered Glock in this situation seems excessively dangerous, but I see your point about not chambering as well. An external safety seems to be a possible compromise but isn't available in a compact 380. DAO also seems like it may be the best approach, but I am not certain if it is safe enough.
Thanks for your time to wade through this long letter.
Scott -
P.S. Please feel free to publish this letter and your response. I think it would be useful to others as well.

Hello Scott,

Thanks for your email. I agree, there’s probably a lot of people that find themselves in this very same situation.
I like your car key analogy. It’s funny how I’ve had the exact opposite experience: My entire life, I’ve always locked the door of my car as soon as I got out. Every. Single. Time. Not doing so meant someone would notice it and get in, steal something. Years later, even when driving for a hike out in the woods in the middle of nowhere and just getting out for a minute or two, I still lock the door. Its an incorporated habit. You get out of the car and you use the key to lock the car. Always. All the time. This means the key has to be in my hand to do so. That’s how I never locked myself out of my car by accident. ;-) Now if I would only lock my car once in a while, when I thought it was needed and not other times, then I wouldn’t have the same muscle memory where I take the keys with me, lock the car and put the keys in my front right pocket without even thinking about it. That’s the key word right there: You don’t have to even think about it. It has to be an unconscious process, muscle memory programed through repetition.

You ask about carrying with an empty chamber. I most certainly would advice against it.
Not because of what happens to law enforcement officers but because of what happens to normal, law abiding citizens. Sure, a gun with an empty chamber is fine if you have to shoot a deer on the side of the road, but when attacked? Not so much. There’s countless videos of normal people going about their day when suddenly attacked, struggling with their gun’s slide and even getting killed without firing a round.

You are right about how unlikely the situation is. Years will go by without you ever having to defend yourself, if ever. But one day someone attacks you, he’s shooting at you, already on top of you and if lucky you barely have time to draw the gun and pull the trigger. Why is this person trying to kill you? Because that’s the way the world is. A mugging attempt, drugs, mental disorder, terrorism, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that it is violent and fast and you simply don’t have time. In most cases that I know of where ordinary people defended themselves, in most of them having a gun with an empty chamber would have been a mistake they would have paid for dearly, maybe even with their lives.
Commit yourself to doing it properly, do it right every single time over and over and you will  be just fine. I would encourage you to take some time to look up a reputable firearms instructor in your area, someone with good credentials. You don’t need a Navy SEAL, someone with a good reputation in your local community will do. In my opinion and based on every single instructor I know of that I believe is worth listening to, every single one of them will advice against carrying with an empty chamber. It just defeats the purpose of carrying in the first place in too many possible scenarios.
  • “How can a Glock/Ruger LCPII type firearm be carried to minimize the risk of accidental pulling of the trigger when concealing in a pants pocket? Are there some other ways to conceal carry that doesn't require a jacket or shirt hanging out?”
A small 380ACP Glock or Ruger LCP can be carried in a pocket holster. This is the most logical option for such small guns. You need a holster, there’s no way around that. While kept in its holster the gun is perfectly safe. Good training will help you come to peace with this. I believe the post 2013 LCP has a nicer trigger than the older models and the LCPII has a trigger safety like the Glock. Given the small size and poor sights, it makes sense to use a laser sight such as the CT Crimson Trace Laserguard.

Here’s a holster that would work well with the LCPII with a CT laser installed.

Another good choice would be a snub nose revolver, Smith & Wesson J-frame, something like a S&W 340PD with laser grips.
Personally, I would go with a Glock 19 and simply use a tuckable holster. This allows you to tuck your shirt as you desire, conceal the gun well, yet be armed with a proper Glock 19. The hook loops and stays hidden behind the belt.
Galco USA Ultimate Second Amendment for Glock 19, 23, 32 (Natural, Right-hand)
Concealed carry isnt just about picking a gun. You have to dress around it as well, with pants, shirt and belt to go along with what you have in mind.
  • “Would a double action only pistol be a better option? What would be a preferred additional safety option - not chambering a round, an external safety, DAO, other?”
The Ruger LCP is double action only. For pocket carry yes, it makes sense. If you go with the LCP make sure you practice a lot given that pocket guns are harder to master.
  • ”I have heard you and others mention that accidental discharges are prevented by cascade of safeties. They only happen when of all these safeties are broached. Can you list these safeties? While the Glock may have many safeties preventing the gun itself from discharging unless the trigger is pulled, it doesn't seem to have any when the trigger is pulled. So what other safeties prevent this from happening unintentionally? A holster is the only thing I can think of, and in the minimal clothing situation I am talking about, that doesn't seem to be either very viable or helpful.”
The Glock has three safeties, two internal and one in the trigger, but yes, pulling the trigger discharges the firearm. There’s no external manual safety. This seems problematic but again, with good training you quickly see why so many people chose the Glock, why its so successful and yes, very safe too. The trick is having a good polymer holster. As long as the gun is in its holster, the Glock simply will not fire. It all comes down to having a good belt, a good holster and the right training and safety habits. Combine those and it’s a perfectly safe gun to carry.
Good luck and when you have the time, please let me know what setup you ended up with and how its working out for you.



Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, April 15, 2019

Car Steering Wheel Lock: 3 Great Reasons to Own One

For years I kept a similar safety lock bar in my car in Argentina.

It wasn’t as nice as this one though. It was a cheap ugly thing, but it worked. Shaped like a small baseball bat, made of steel and painted yellow. One night someone broke into my car (at that time it was parked in the street). There wasn’t much to steal and they took off, but thanks to that safety bar they didn’t take the car. It was also useful as a weapon. A short heavy steel bat can do a good bit of damage, and the neat thing is its perfectly legal and not considered a weapon.

This new one that I purchased is much nicer, has a better lock, better grip and feels a lot sturdier.
Besides its main anti-theft use, and having a Startrek Batleth weapon vibe to it, it also has a glass breaking tip at the other end. Being as heavy as it is, the metal tip will easily break glass with minimal effort. This can be important when escaping the vehicle after an accident, fire or trying to get someone else out from another car after a collision.

I believe its well work the 26 bucks it costs in Amazon. I’m happy with mine and it now lives tucked next to the driver’s seat in my car.

On the left hand, in the driver’s door storage compartment, I still have a large can of Sabre Red Pepper Spray.

It’s good to have options.

Stay safe people.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Problems with the Glock 19

Hello Fernando.

I am your subscriber for a few years now. I enjoy your videos and really grateful that you share your experience.

I think I started watching your videos during sad events that took place in Ukraine in 2014 (with our peninsula being annexed, war in the eastern part of Ukraine, currency devaluation, etc.) I always hoped that I won't end up using valuable information gained from your videos, well, for obvious reasons. I wasn't really a fan of aforementioned events, so I moved to Canada.
So, with that being sad, I would like to share my story of buying my first firearm — a Glock, and a malfunction(!) which occurred the first time I was shooting my Glock.

But at first, allow me to share my shooting background. In Ukraine people are not allowed to possess a handgun, but since my father is in military, he always takes me to drills, where I can shoot firearms (Makarov's pistol, AK-74, PK machine gun, Dragunov's Sniper Rifle and even RPG-7). I shot few thousands rounds in my life, and I was relatively good at it. Nothing fancy, but I managed to hit my targets while having descent groupings. So when I came to Canada, I decided to buy a Glock19. It was my dream pistol since I, as a kid, saw it in a hollywood movie. I had a lot of arguments as to why I want specifically this pistol. You know all that arguments and you even have a video about it. Fast forward to my first experience with my new Glock19.

I shoot my first magazine with 10 cartridges and... I have a jam on my third shot. This is weird — I said to myself. And continued shooting. I had another jam in my first magazine. I was desperate and I did not understand what was happening. I though there's something wrong with my glock. I had malfunctions (failure to feed and jams) in approximately 30% of shots, which is definitely not normal.

I took it back to the store where I bought it and explained my situation. Store owner took my Glock and shot 40 cartridges with no issues whatsoever. And he told me that the problem might be in me. I smiled at him and left. You probably know where it's going now, right? That day I started browsing the internet and I learned a new term "Limp wristing". I could not believe that Glock can and probably WILL malfunction depending on how firm is your grip. I couldn't believe since police use it, military use it — surely sometimes people there are under stress, being shot at, or even injured — how the hell are they supposed to constantly control their grip? But still, it's a fact. Police use it, military use it. I never ever had an issue like that while firing Makarov's Pistol. I told my father about it — he was really surprised. As well as his colleagues in the army. How come the reliability of your pistol depends on you, not on your pistol?

Of course after I learned the cause of my troubles, analyzed and changed the pressure of my grip, I shot about 200 cartridges with no issue. I'm not selling my Glock, no. I will train with it, and keep shooting with it.

But still, I really can not believe that polymer framed pistols have this issue, especially, that Glock has it. Now I have this thought, that maybe CZ pistol (or similar with a steel frame) might be better for a person who is concerned with self-defense. Especially if it's a weak guy or a small woman.
I would really appreciate if you share any thoughts about this matter.
Thank you, Sergey
Hello Sergey,
Yes, limp wristing can be a problem, but its not just Glock, any auto pistol is likely to fail when allowed to move in the hand.
I cant say I ever had this problem. A good grip and maybe a little workout with dumbells will help you a lot.
Unless you have a specific weakening disability, you shouldn’t have any problem as long as you hold your gun firmly.
A good alternative for people that have this problem (for whatever reason) is a good revolver.

I suggest though that you work on holding your Glock 19 firmly, it really is a fine, reliable firearm. Hold it aligned with your forearm as shown in the pic below, and a good firm grip, as high as possible.

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, April 8, 2019

Sneak Peek: What I'm working on for my next book

Friday, April 5, 2019

Poor Diet is the main cause of early death world wide

Image result for Poor Diet is the main cause of early death world wide

Walk around any gun show or prepper show and you see the irony: From an objective point of view, an alarming number of people are ignoring the clear, number one cause of premature death.
Poor diet biggest risk factor for early deaths worldwide
A major study has found that unhealthful eating is responsible for more deaths worldwide than any other risk factor, including smoking.
A diet low in nutrients may cause more deaths worldwide than smoking or other unhealthful habits, suggests new research.
The Global Burden of Disease Study looked at dietary consumption between 1990 and 2017 in 195 countries, focusing on 15 types of food or nutrients.
In a paper that features in The Lancet, the study investigators conclude that, due to its contribution to noncommunicable diseases, poor diet accounted for 1 in 5, or 11 million, adult deaths in 2017.
Survivalism is about surviving, about staying alive, and having as good a life as possible. The being alive part… kind of a big deal.

It makes no sense to worry about surviving if you’re going to ignore that which is clearly killing the most people and negatively impacting their quality of life the most.
I’m no doctor but certain things are obvious. If you’re morbidly obese you’re not a “big guy”, “big boned”, let alone “strong”. You’re just fat.

More fruits and vegetables (makes sense, its what you would naturally find the most trying to feed yourself in nature) less salt, reasonable portions and caloric intake. If a person needs 2,000 calories a day and an elite athlete needs and additional 50% or more, then the typical Joe with a mostly sedentary life has no business ingesting 3,000 calories, most of it from junk food with terrible nutritional value.

Take a good long look at yourself and be honest. If you need to make changes to your diet, do them.
After all the only one that gets hurt if you don’t is yourself and the people that care about you.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, April 1, 2019

Body Armor for Preppers: Why it’s a must-have item

Image result for safeguard armor stealth pro
“Preppers don't need body armor, concentrate on food, first aid, energy, shelter. Waste of money.”
This was posted in the comments soon after I posted my video on body armor (found below), to which I replied:
“Really? Let me know how many people got stabbed/shot to death in recent weeks in your country vs people starving to death.”

It always surprises me though, how little people understand the importance of body armor.
When it comes to guns everyone agrees that yes, you should have them for a number of reasons. Self defense? Sure. But how does that work? It makes perfect sense to have a number of guns to defend yourself but these same people will claim you’re crazy if you get armor.

Practically everyone that carries a gun as part of their job will most likely wear body armor as well. In fact, even in countries like UK where many LEO don’t carry a sidearm, they still wear a vest. EMTs in many parts of US wear body armor just in case. It simply makes sense.

You’re not about to wear it all day long, any more than you carry a rifle all day long. But just like the rifle, in certain situations you may be wise to pick it up and when you do so it may save your life.

Safeguard Stealth Pro

The folks over at Safeguard Armor asked if I would be interested in reviewing some of their gear and of course I was glad to do so.

The Stealth Pro model soon caught my attention. It’s a concealable IIIA vest that includes interior pockets for SAPI plates should you chose to include them for rifle protection.
But concealment is where this vest shines. The vest is surprisingly light and comfortable to wear compared to my old IIIA vest. The vest is made of CoolMAX, a moisture-wicking and breathable polyester fabric.

Traveling during times of civil unrest or bad parts of town, when you go check something that went bump in the night, when picking large quantities of cash or buying/selling with strangers you met online, for any potential high-risk situation body armor may be a life saver. Unlike firearms, it is unrestricted in most of the United States and Europe.

Safeguard Armor is located in Leeds, UK and they do ship internationally as well.
Check their website


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Certified Glock Armorer Course: Things I learned

Monday, March 25, 2019

Terrorism Wins in New Zealand

Image result for Jacinda Ardern

New Zealand Primer Minister Jacinda Ardern

New Zealand Primer Minister and President of the International Union of Socialist Youth Ms. Jacinda Ardern made sure to deliver within days on the demands made by the terrorist in his manifesto: Ban guns for law abiding citizens, leaving them unarmed to defend themselves, their families and their country.

A brave leader would have stood strong and not cave to the demands of a terrorist, refuse to let a madman dictate the law of the land and how law abiding people should live their lives.  But Jacinda Ardern is a proud socialist and we all know what that means: “Socialists gonna socialist”.

Jacinda Ardern is so drunk with power, even the terrorist manifesto itself got banned and anyone caught with it faces up to 14 years behind bars. But hey, who cares about silly things such as censorship and freedom of press? Its interesting to see how she banned the paper that explained the man’s actions and the intended results, and how he got exactly what he wanted. This kind of censorship goes beyond anything most in the Left dare to in the western civilized world and goes right into the kind of thing seen in dictatorships like North Korea.

New Zealand has two anthems, "God Defend New Zealand" and  "God Save the Queen".

God will indeed have to defend NZ because its population clearly wont. Certainly not now that they are being disarmed like medieval age peasants.

As for the queen, she’ll do just fine.  She has guards armed with real assault rifles and she sure as hell wont give those up.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

10 years of Modern Survivalism: Skills, Preparations and Lessons learned

Hi FerFAL,

It has been a long time since I have written to you but I have been following your blog all this while. In fact, it has been 10 years since I started reading your blog. (I have read and reread both your books too.) Seeing that you have been writing various posts about 10 years after XYZ or ABC event, I find it apt to send this update to you. This write-up also serves as a self-assessment of my preps.

In 2009, your blog and first book really opened my eyes to the world of survivalism. Before that, I was fascinated with wilderness survival and survival for an NBC (nuclear, biological, chemical) event. But your first book presented chillingly realistic aspects of modern survival which I have never thought of. I found major gaps in my preparedness efforts. Your book henceforth became a blueprint for my preparedness strategy which includes changes in my mindset, acquisition of certain vital skills and procurement of relevant gear and stuff.

In no particular order, I list down below 10 aspects (in following the theme of 10 years) of my preparations and my thoughts about them.
  1. Shooting
    I researched and tried out shooting at the one and only civilian range  in this country. I later joined as a full member and have since been working on shooting with a Glock 17 based on your recommendation. Shooting is not cheap here. Membership fees, range fees, ammo prices make shooting a rich man’s sport though I try to maintain and upgrade my skills as much as I can afford but not as much as I wish.
  2. Hand-to-hand
    Your advice is the prime motivator for me to lift up my butt and train in martial arts. I have trained in Muay Thai for years now and done some MMA along the way. I wish I could have taken up BJJ but time and money are always constraints.
  3. First Aid
    I have been going for first aid training long before reading your work. But you have drilled into me the importance of this skill and now I make it a point to keep myself trained and adopt the mindset to be prepared to use these skills anytime. I would like to upgrade myself by joining an ambulance crew but so far have yet to sign up.
  4. Fitness
    Since I left the army (we have conscription here), exercise has always been a regular activity but it was upon taking up a martial art that I have become more systematic in it. I have also enlarged my coverage to include certain previously neglected aspects e.g. flexibility, plyometrics.
  5. Food
    I have yet to reach a stockpile of 2 months and am unsure I ever will since space is a premium here. I put my estimate at 2-3 weeks of supply currently in stock. Not ideal but much better than many others with only a couple days’ supply.
  6. Water
    I have stored enough real water for a week or so. Not as much as I would like but again, space is a premium and water REALLY takes up space. I also got a Doulton gravity filter (similar to a Big Berkey) in case water is available but not in a clean state.
  7. EDC
    I have experimented quite a bit here based on your recommendations. The setup is more or less stabilised now or at least until something significantly more effective comes along (probably recommended by you). I suppose the gear can always change but the mindset is more or less fixed and this is what counts. Concepts like 3 is 2, 2 is 1, 1 is none; a piece of gear should serve more than 1 purpose are now ingrained.
  8. Money
    “Cash is king” has become a mantra. I make sure there is always a bit of cash around. I am certain that despite being fiat money, it can keep me running when banks are closed and credit/debit is down. The same show played in Argentina can surely happen here too. Precious metals are a bit out of reach financially but I am sure they will be a good asset to keep.
  9. Security
    This could be my blind spot and is something I want to continually work on. I agree with your security recommendations but being a relatively safe country here, complacency has a bad habit of creeping in. And it only takes a single moment of complacency to lead to a regrettable outcome – something I definitely want to avoid.
  10. Politics and media
    These are issues overlooked by many survivalists. Yet, they potentially have the greatest impact on our way of life. I have since scrutinised both more critically or even cynically. No longer can both be trusted at surface value.
  11. Relocation
    I know I have gone on to 11 points but relocation is an option that I have become more open to. I totally agree that sometimes, the only way to survive is to relocate. Getting a second passport, planning for a location (or two) to run to, opening an offshore bank account are important to a survivalist. Though I must admit that I have yet to accomplish many of the above tasks, they are continually on my radar.

I hope this mail has not been too long. I am sure I have missed out other aspects of my preparedness journey. Nonetheless, the above are what come to mind and probably for the good reason that they are close to my heart.

Thanks for reading.



Hello Ken. Your email wasn’t too long, at all. I very much enjoyed it, thank you.

I’m glad you enjoyed my books, “The Modern Survival Manual” and “Bugging Out and Relocating”.
It just makes my day when I read about having a positive impact on people’s lives. Its’ very humbling and gratifying at the same time.

You touch on various key topics. I believe you’ve got modern survivalism pretty well covered. As you so eloquently explain, both time and money are limited resources and we can only do so much. Of course we would all want to be national shooting champions, have military experience, have police experience, have experience in the medical field, be UFC champions in our weight class and while at it why not ask to be rich, have a great family and plenty of spare time to actually enjoy life.
We only have so much time and we always end up compromising to a great degree. I believe that you’ve acquired a pretty balanced set of skills that most definitely gives you an advantage for when things get complicated in life.

You’re right about shooting being a pretty expensive sport. For anyone new to guns reading it, my advice to save money is to keep things simple. A Glock 17 and spare mags. Don’t waste time and money “plinking”. I wasted many days and thousands of USD just punching holes into paper and not actually learning. I know it sounds counterintuitive but the best thing to do to save money is sign up to a good defensive shooting class and stick to practicing what you learn there. That’s far better than shooting 50 rounds any given weekend for years, never learning anything.

As for precious metals, it sure isnt a priority but it does make sense and it can also be a lot of fun to learn about them. Most countries had silver coins in circulation at some point and that is your “de facto” junk silver. Shopping around you’re likely to find a few around for little over spot price. Personally, I like doing the research, learn about different coins, their value and history.

Also regarding politics and the media, I do believe they have an important role in our life and it can affect us for better or worse. I try to be balanced and objective. Cant say I trust most politicians in general and when it comes to the media I read both left and right outlets so as to get both sides. I also look into who owns each given media outlet. Its usually there that you see the agenda they follow.

The only thing I would add to your list would be family and friends. Socializing and networking with people. I make the effort to “work” on being a good husband and a good dad. Also try to make friends when I can. Being social, the relationship with our families, these are key not just for survival but for our quality of life and you need dedication to make it work. Same thing when it comes to friends and networking. The people you know and contacts you have are essential, not just for SHTF but also for doing well in normal times as well.

Anyway, thank you for your email and for sharing your experiences.

Kind regards,

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Friday, March 15, 2019

The Finest Combat Pistol Ever Made

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Tory MP says every knife sold in UK should have GPS tracker 'fitted in the handle'

             MP for North Cornwall Scott Mann, the genius behind this idea.

No, this isnt a joke. This is what a British Member of Parliament is seriously proposing when he was debating UK’s “knife crime” problem.

Again, not a meth-crazed bum living under a bridge, but an elected British Tory MP, you know, the people that are supposed to be “conservatives” and “on your side”.
Tory MP says every knife sold in UK should have GPS tracker 'fitted in the handle'
Scott Mann said ‘If you’re carrying it around you had better have a bloody good explanation, obvious exemptions for fishing etc,’.
The proposal was suggested as a potential means of dealing with increasing levels of knife crime in the UK.
He said: “Every knife sold in the UK should have a GPS tracker fitted in the handle.”
“It’s time we had a national database like we do with guns. If you’re carrying it around you had better have a bloody good explanation, obvious exemptions for fishing etc.”
Just let that sink for a minute.

Seriously proposing a knife having a GPS attacked to it. He also wants a national database "like we do with guns".

Every single knife would cost at least 100 bucks. Every. Single. One.
You would have to CHARGE your knife.

Police would constantly be going after you every time you had a BBQ outdoors or forgot to charge your knife.

Last time I checked. People in freaking prison make shanks and knives rather easily. Whats stopping a criminal from grabbing any piece of scrap metal and making his own non-GPS registered knife?

Is this GPS knife dishwasher approved? Make that 200 USD per knife.

This man gets PAID (well north of 100,000 USD a year, plus a pile of benefits) for saying idiotic things such as these.

Again, this is coming from the Conservative (Tory) party, supposed to be the Right in United Kingdom.

Oh, he's also a brave man that wants to ban water as well since it nearly killed him once (he doesnt know how to swim)

scott mann

Again, NO I am not kidding. This a a real person that exists in this planet and is an elected politician.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

No power, no water, no hope: Lessons from Venezuela's Collapse

No power, no water, no food, people drinking from the sewer, looting and 1.37 Million Percent inflation.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, March 11, 2019

Being alone and the impact it has on your survival rate, your health and quality of life.

Continuing with the line of thought of my post about preparedness as we grow older, I’d like to bring up another taboo subject.

Being alone.

Coming from a Latino culture, I fully understand the hesitation to even talk about something like this. You’re supposed to be tough, rugged and not complain about silly things such as feelings. Feeling lonely falls well within such category. Making matters even worse I actually do enjoy some alone time, maybe a bit too much. At last for people like me (and many in the survival community are this way) its dangerously easy to be ok with being along. In spite of all I also know perfectly well that without my wife and kids I’d be miserable.

A lot of people are very much alone, they do feel lonely and its not by choice.
Census figures show that one in 11 Americans age 50 and older lacks a spouse, partner or living child. That’s roughly eight million people in America.

The Loneliest Generation: Americans, More Than Ever, Are Aging Alone
We also know that being lonely isnt good for you, it directly impacts both your health and quality of life.

Loneliness Is as Lethal As Smoking 15 Cigarettes Per Day. Here's What You Can Do About It
What I do and would advise others to do is work at making these relationships work.
To that end, here’s my piece of advice of the day:

Work at making your marriage work. Work at having a good relationship with your kids. I’m lucky in that I have a great family and love wife and children. But I also admit it wasn’t all some lucky coincidence. I did go out there to find the right woman and didn’t settle for anyone less than what I wanted. Once I found her, I made the conscious effort to make it work, as a father and husband. We live in this screwed up, selfish and disposable society. People are just as disposable as relationships and we are told that’s the way its supposed to be. If you don’t want that to be you then act accordingly.

Work at making friends. This one is hard for me because I enjoy more being with my wife and kids than anyone else. Of course, I’m lucky in that regard (we already addressed the matter of luck when it comes to these things) but it also means I struggle a bit to get outside that circle and make friends.
I do try though, and trying enough you eventually have success. Do try to talk with people, do smile, say hi, engage in conversation. Even if it seems like silly small talk it is still social interaction that is good for you. It’s also about practicing that skill which you probably need to get better at anyway.
Just a couple things to think about people.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Thursday, March 7, 2019

New AK: Kalashnikov AK-203 assault rifle

750,000 new AKs for India: Modi unveils Kalashnikov plant producing latest Russian rifles
Hi Fernando,

This is the new version.
What I find interesting is that after nearly 50 years of the M16 the US has finally admitted its a fatally flawed design. It is strange they just did not make an AK 47 in the USA.


Hey Steve, thanks for the link.

Nice AK. Don’t see how ergonomics are improved “dramatically” though.

Guns in the military aren’t just guns, they have a symbol and political status as well. That’s one of the reasons why the US military stuck with the M16/AR platform for so long.

I’m not much of a fan of the AR platform though. Direct GI is simply inferior to piston by allowing hot dirty gas directly back into the action of the gun. The bolt isn’t much to admire either and stripping is simple enough but there’s easier guns with less small parts to mess with.
Of course its also light, accurate, there’s tons of magazines and accessories.

In spite of not being my favourite rifle, at today’s prices the AR makes a lot of sense.

While not my first pick for SHTF (I’d rather go with an AK47 or FAL for long term) with some training on how to run it, it will do the job. Its also a good gun for when shooting 3 gun competition.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Reply: Changes in Survival & Preparedness as you Grow Older

Now that I'm older, just turned 61, this video was for me. Thank you for bringing up this delicate subject most like to avoid. Though I'm in good health, physically fit, eat right. Ect., I have noticed pronounced changes in the last few years. Namely, eyesight is less focused, slower in moving, get tired more easily and temperament.

Just the way it is! A couple of things besides those mentioned is taking supplements.
Number one is for joint health, which has glucosamine, chondroitin, some brands have additional boosters like vitamin D. It something I've taken for decades, start young, pays dividends later on. Yes, exercise is critical, move around and stretch!

For me, light yoga and minimum walk at least one hour a day (3miles).
A little trot run to speed it up for a hour is better.

I've read we age in spurts, so be prepared for a lot of change in a short time frame. We don't like to face it but when the hair gets sparse on top of the head and your eyelids droop so it affects your eyesight, one is forced to deal with the change. In my case, preparing for the day when I have to get an eyelids lift procedure.

Being without children, I will have to create an extended family. Translation, perhaps again going back to sharing a resident. That means being active maybe in church religious, social clubs ect.
Oh, thumbs up for the recommendation on DOGS...important, yes the are excellent security measure and company.

Lastly, it can really suck getting old, so learn how to keep a smile on your face!
I read amateur runners in a long distance run preformed better when they smiled while doing it!
Attitude works wonders.

Thanks again and looking to reading your next book, Ferfal.

Thanks, thank you for your honesty and observations.

Yes, attitude is essential in all stages of life but it seems to be even more so the older we grow. You just have to stay positive and active. Some of the older people I admire the most work harder than many that are ¼ their age. There’s some 80 year olds out there that wake up every morning excited about the day ahead of them and that makes all the difference in the world.

Sharing residency sounds like a very good idea. Not sure how it works but I see how splitting bills between two or three people helps a lot. You also have other people for company, help one another and think of ways of staying busy. We often complain about other people and prefer to be alone (I know I do) but at the end of the day we are social creatures and not meant to be alone.
Take care and good luck!


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, March 4, 2019

Changes in Survival & Preparedness as you Grow Older

Not a cool flashy video but a relevant one for many of you out there.
 I feel this one went well.

How preparedness and survival changes as we grow older. Not as fast any more, not as strong, how some things change regarding self defense. What supplies you want to stock up.

Leave a comment below and let me know if you can think of others ways in which preparedness changes as you grow older.

Friday, March 1, 2019

DIY: Home-made High visibility sights

Very simple tip on making that front sight more visible.

Sure, get proper high visibility sights with tritium for your main carry gun, go with these if you can:

But if you want to try something that costs next to nothing then give this a try. Especially if you have several guns, backups and you don’t want to be spending a lot of money on getting fancy $100 sights for each.
In my case it was more about not modifying my revolver. My Manurhin MR73 is a work of art of a firearm and I’m not about to mess with it. But the target style sights are honestly hard to see in low light conditions with that black front post.
This is how it compared to the orange front sight on my Colt Python (left) and my home made one on my MR73 on the right:

This DIY High viz project is very easy. Follow the steps and watch the video.
1) Clean the front sight with rubbing alcohol

2) Tape around the area you plan on painting

3) Start with a base layer of white nail polish. You could give it a go with liquid paper if nothing else. Keep in mind that with nail polish you’ll need about three or four layers to have a good white foundation.

4) Paint on top with bright orange fluorescent nail polish. The brighter the better. There’s dedicated glow in the dark orange paint ($9) for this called GLOW-ON Orange Super Phosphorescent Gun Night Sights Paint.
5) Final step, once everything is dry use a coat or two of super glue. This will make the painted area far more resistant to chipping, holster wear and easier to keep clean.

6) Remove the tape. You may want to cut with a razor or xacto blade next to the tape, so as to not pull off the paint along with it.

That’s it. Give it a try. If you don’t like it its easy enough to clean everything up and leave it as it was before or give it another try.

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Teaching your kids about the value of money and earning a living

Replying to: Teaching your kids to not only to Survive but to do well in Life
All wise words, mate. Sounds like your kids are well on the way to being the kind of people we all want to be around.
I am also trying to encourage my daughters to learn about the expectations of doing work, both paid and unpaid. Giving youngsters some kind of chores to carry out ( laying and clearing the table around meals, caring for and feeding the dog, keeping their room tidy etc) encourages them to see that looking after themselves, their environment and community is normal and rewarding. They also have the opportunity of volunteering for extra task ( chores are expected and unpaid ) to earn a bit of pocket money. I encourage them to save some of it and budget to some extent, as learning to delay immediate gratification in exchange for a longer-term goal is a very valuable skill which few adults have mastered.

Great topic, thanks for bringing it up.

In our home we have it written down in a chart kept on the fridge, who’s in charge of cooking and cleaning up each day. It does help a lot and it gives kids and teens a sense of order and reasonability. It also teaches them to value what parents do for them every day and not take it for granted so much.
As you said, its chores, it’s their obligation. They do a little bit to help around the house, it both helps parents and it helps them so as to know how to do things when they end up living by themselves.
Money from Christmas or birthdays, it all get put away and saved. The money stash soon reaches interesting figures when its not thrown away on silly junk.

For our oldest son, he’s been doing a bit of freelance programing. My wife and I told him several times how great it is to have this experience at his age (16) to actually earn your own money, to be able to do it online and while doing something you like.  Not only that but having the work experience, talking and communicating with a client, learning how much he should charge per hour and how long it takes him to get the job done.  All invaluable.

Some may not realize this, but these skills, knowing how to budget, how to save money, how to make it, these are all very important survival skills.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Monday, February 25, 2019

Clipper Lighters: 7 reasons why they are one of the Best Survival Lighters

“FerFAL, what are good barter items to stock up on?”

That’s a question I get asked a lot. Barter became very popular in Argentina when the economy crashed. Still, for a number of reasons, I don’t believe that in general it’s much of a good idea to stock up items and supplies specifically for barter after SHTF. Most people that ended up bartering to make it through did it because they had no other choice.

But while I don’t believe much in stocking up barter items, I do believe in stocking up items that are:
1) Consumables that are going to be used eventually, SHTF or not
2)  Affordable
3) Compact and light weight
4) Have proven to be in high demand during past SHTF events
5) And yes, could potentially be used as valuable barter items, if such a scenario ever plays out.
Lighters and matches definitely score high on all of the above so I keep plenty of those. As for matches, hands down my favourite ones are strike-anywhere Swan Vesta matches. Keep them nice and dry in a match box or small Ziploc bag and you're good to go.

When it comes to lighters, I favor Clipper lighters. Now, you can just stock up on some generic brand (not a good idea, quality is mostly poor) or a trusted brand  (usually Bic) But Clippers have a few advantages.

1) They are made in Spain under rather strict safety and quality control standards. Unlike Bics, Clippers are made of Nylon which is much harder to break on impact and more fire resistant.

2)The pentagon shaped wheel is easier to strike, especially when compared to the silly child proof wheel in current Bics.

3)They are affordable, just a few cents more than disposable Bic lighters.

4)They are refillable lighters. Yes, you can refill disposable ones as well but they aren’t intended for that and the Clipper has a proper valve at the bottom for refiling.

5)The flint striker can be removed and the flint replaced.

6)The flame adjusts automatically, increasing in size when turned sideways for pipes.

7)They come in a variety of designs, colors and materials. From utilitarian see-through plastic to know how much fuel you have left, to bright colored ones for easy location when dropped, ideal for survival kits, or classy metal version both in chrome and gun metal, suited for EDC carry.


Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Friday, February 22, 2019

Teaching your kids to not only to Survive but to do well in Life

I took my 10 year old to the movies this past weekend. We saw “Alita: Battle Angel” (liked it, good action movie and true enough to the comic).

So we’re sitting there, waiting for the movie to start, when I see this kid walk into the theatre.  He must have been about ten years old too, same as my boy. But this kid was easily twice his size, maybe more. The boy had no neck, just a giant roll of fat and a belly like a 9 month pregnant woman. Boobs like one too, printing through the loose basketball tank top he was wearing. He really did NOT need the large soda he had in his hand and whatever junk food he had in the other. The kid climbed the steps towards the row of seats in the back. Half way there he was already short of breath and you could hear him gasping for air. This ten your old literally struggled to walk across a room and climb a few steps.

The movie started and it was quite good. No, thankfully it wasn’t a liberal girl power mess but rather similar to the original Gunnm: Battle Angel Alita of 1993.

Driving back home I found myself again thinking about that kid, how bad his parents had clearly screwed up and how, while not perfect, I do pat myself in the back about how mine are turning out. My wife had asked our paediatrician about our ten year old being too thin. He emphatically told her not to change a thing in the boy’s diet, that he’s perfectly healthy and that she has no idea how many children are overweight and the many problems they have because of it.

Being a good parent isn’t always easy but it’s not rocket science either. It’s not that most parents out there didn’t read the right parenting book. It’s simply that they don’t care and that they’d rather be doing something else than spending time with their own children.

It’s easier to stuff a kid full of junk food than to teach him to eat fruits instead and explain why those are better for him. Or why even in Halloween he can only have so much candy because large amounts of processed sugar are terrible for him. If you let them eat an entire bag of candy they’ll let you watch TV or check out your Instagram in peace which is what most people want these days.
I’m no Dad of the Year but these are a few things I do with my kids, so that they are healthy, strong of mind and body.
  • Be there. Be a damn Dad. Do as much of the stuff you’re supposed to do. For some people its hiking, for others its camping, fishing, hunting, shooting but have some bonding activity and try to teach them valuable skills while at it. Above all, make those quality time moments happen. If you can’t be bothered to actually make them happen, then maybe you’re not Dad material and are better off not having kids at all.

  • Teach your kids to eat. The morbidly obese kid in the theatre is not something you see very often around here in Spain. Come to think of it, the movie was in its original language (English) and people going to these are mostly English speaking foreigners so there’s a good chance that’s exactly what he was. But its all about the food. Moving, walking, running, that’s all great for a child but a child is fat not because he’s not hitting the gym enough but because he’s eating garbage instead of real food. The same goes for adults. If you teach your kids well from an early age, they wont even be inclined to eat much processed food and downright find it unpalatable compared to real homemade food.

  • Teach your kids to fight. Knowing how to stand up for themselves is vital. At a certain point a kid has to understand that “tell the teacher” isn’t how the real world works, that they have to face their problems themselves. Standing up for yourself against your peers is a rite of passage for every boy. Most people fail at it, others succeed, and at the end of the day there’s a lesson there as well. My teenage son had to face his bully when little and successfully dealing with that hurdle noticeably changed him for the better. Recently my ten year old had to experience that as well, how sometimes violence is the only solution. It’s an important step and your child will remember it forever, for better or worse. Feeling scared, too afraid to fight back, its soul crushing for a 10 year old (bet it is for and adult as well). At the same time if they do find the courage to put a beating on them, the results are just as drastic. There’s an euphoria in fighting back, in beating your adversary, in winning. Nothing compares to it. You know you did well when the former bully now chases your kid wanting to be his friend instead.

  • Read with them. Every night, a few pages just before going to sleep. It’s sad how many kids have never read a single book other than the few short ones required for school. Once a kid starts appreciating reading, they will keep doing it on their own.

  • Teach them to think for themselves. Explain to them that what their teacher says, what they see on TV, its will most likely be agenda driven depending on who’s saying it and what interests it represents. You want your kid to be a free thinker, not another marketing target zombie that thinks and talks like everyone else in their social circle.

  • Support and incentive that which they are passionate about. For my oldest son, that’s computers and programing, so gifts are usually PC related, programing books and that sort of thing. For my ten year old its survival stuff, fire starting and fantasy books (he’s read all of the Harry Potter books and is now starting with The Hobbit, all of them in English)
Once your kids know what they are passionate about, then encourage them to be good at it. There’s a chance that either directly or indirectly, it may become a way or earning a living for them. If that’s the case, when you do that which you are passionate about, then they wont work a day in their lives and that goes a long way not only towards professional success but also happiness.

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”