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About me...

Tom, our defacto "national coordinator" has requested that each of us who run a state prepper board write something about ourselves.

He would like people to be able to move from blog to blog, and see how different we all are in our political, religious, ethnic, and racial backgrounds. I also think he wants people to see what unites us as not only an organization, but as people. As Americans, and along with our brothers and sisters in affiliated groups in Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom, as human beings.

He's on to something there.

I think it will be easy for many to try and dismiss us as "survivalists" with all the baggage the main stream media, movies, and television has attached to the term. The Kaczynski type holed up in a cabin surrounded by his stockpiles of canned food and ammunition waiting for the end of the world. The group of "White Supremacists" parading about their compound waiting for "The Day Of The Rope" from the Turner Diaries. A bunch of camo-clad gun nuts romping about in the woods salivating at the chance to take on the National Guard.

We're anything but.

I don't think any of us want to fight the government or its agents. They're people and have families just as many of us. It has just become apparent to many of us that it is a possibility that has to be prepared for. It is my hope that enough of the people employed by various governmental agencies will realize that it is illegal to obey an un-Constitutional order (not to mention immoral) and remember their oath of office and recognize who the true enemies are.

So, what about me?

Fairly simple. I'm an American.

I can't tell you how proud I feel every single time I think or say those words. I am an American. It doesn't take away from anyone who may be proud to be from somewhere else. Not at all. Every people, every nation has something to be proud of, to be able to point and say, "Here is an example of our greatness."

My father's family came here in 1690. My last name is Hall. Our family fought alongside Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys during the War of Independence. According to family history and legend, one of my ancestors went on to sign the Declaration Of Independence. His name was Lyman Hall, and he went on to become a governor of the State of Georgia. The really scary thing is my younger brother resembles Lyman and is a doctor as was Lyman.

My father's portion of the family settled in Pennsylvania and were farmers until the land was lost during The Great Depression.

Dad was career army. Actually every generation had a male serve since the War For Independence. My grandfather was hit by mustard gas while he served in France during WW I. It was an extremely mild exposure, but the damage to his lungs contributed to his death when I was 4. I still remember him.

WW II, Korea, and Viet Nam took its toll on my dad. What they did to him after he retired took an even greater toll. Those of you who are veterans know all about the promises you're made while your in, and how they all evaporate as soon as you get out.

Watching that played a great roll in my deciding not to enlist in the Army. Sometimes I think I made a mistake. I see how our young men and women are welcomed home from their tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan missing limbs, or with damaged psyches. Then they are forgotten as soon as the band stops playing and the last piece of confetti hits the pavement. It makes me think that maybe I have picked the correct path in life. It also showed me that the policies that affected my father are still in place today.

My younger brother did enlist. At the age of 30. Sounds crazy, doesn't it? A degree in environmental engineering, another in chemistry, and a dissertation short of a master's in math, and he goes and enlists. Just in time for all that fun stuff over in Yugoslavia under Clinton.

He later told me he should have listened to me.

My mom's side of the family is from The Land Of The Rising Sun. Japan. There's a temple in Kyoto where I can go and see my family's history for about two thousand years. It is all engraved on the columns inside the temple. Those of you who may be familiar with Japanese history will recognize the Heike Monogatari. If you are familiar with it, you know what happens when a family becomes too proud and is overtaken by idleness and indecisiveness. You know what happened to that part of my family.

Yeah. It was strange. My dad hit the beach at Normandy. I had an uncle (by marriage) who was a Nazi soldier. One uncle who was a kamikaze (never flew, had part of his ass shot off when the troop train he was riding in was strafed...so thanks to whoever that pilot was), and two others in the Japanese Imperial Army.

Yes, my mother's decision to marry my father caused her to be disowned (except by one sister and her little brother). Yes, my father's decision to marry my mother caused him to be disowned. Except by his father. I never did get a reason why that was. His mother, brothers and sisters all abandoned him.

I've seen what this kind of nonsense can do to people, and determined never to let it be part of the decision making in my life. Consequently, I have friends from just about any racial, ethnic, or religious category you can name. The one thing we have in common is that we're Americans.

We've all figured out that being an American is really all that is important. No matter where any of us go, that's how the world looks at us. If Lawrence ever went back to Africa, they'd see him as an American. When I went to Japan, I was an American. It's true for any of us. We have to be Americans together.

Anyways.

So, I'm an engineering technician for an electronics company. I've worked for the same company for 24 years. I work on computer networks, PC's, servers, microwave systems, fiber optics, magnetic systems, RF systems, CCTV, Card Access, RFID, and other stuff. Yeah, big brother kind of things. I'm in the hardware end of physical security.

I'm married. She's another mutt like me. Navajo, Cree, Italian and Irish (I know that combination is responsible for her bad temper). Just another American.

We have one human child and 11 "fur babies" as my wife calls them. Two dogs, and nine cats. There is a reason I am called "Catman". It's a name my father gave me when I was born.

I was born in Germany, and my parents lived in a house in Darmstadt. The neighbors had a cat named Smokey. Smokey would climb down the stone chimney at night and cover me and my bedding with soot much to my mother's consternation. Nothing would keep that cat away from me. Ever since then, I've had this thing with cats.

It frustrates my wife because "they find me" as she puts it. At one point I had 50 cats I was trying to care for and find homes for. They even hijacked a UPS truck for me. Maybe I'll tell you that story another time.

My friends in high school made crude jokes about me always managing to find a pussy to play with wherever I went.

I became interested in what was then "survivalism" back in the late 1970s. My brother and I petitioned my parents endlessly for rifles. The most we ever achieved were BB guns, throwing knives, and judo lessons. My folks weren't anti-gun.

They just knew some things about my brother and I, and how certain kids back then might have turned up missing. Being mixed race in a white nighborhood wasn't easy, especially with "Howie" who made it plain that his family was part of the KKK.

Dad encouraged my brother and I in our survivalist endeavors. We made trips to the military surplus store. God, we even tried those "C" rations. I'm surprised most of our fighting men didn't surrender in hopes of better food. He encouraged making booby traps, and making explosives out of household chemicals. He even thought it was cool when my brother and I made a detour into making illegal drugs.

His only warning was "Don't use it and don't get caught". My brother had many friends who were all too willing to sample the home made meth and LSD, along with other extractions made from plants. Look, I'm not advocating any of this. The laws were alot different back in the late 70's and early 80's. We did things that would earn you a trip to a federal pen at the drop of a hat today.

We turned Estes model rockets into surface to air and surface to surface missiles. We used them in home made LAWs style launchers. We blew up abandoned cars. A few were built into torpedoes. We accidentally sank a marker buoy in the river using one. Later a dredge sank in the river. People thought we had something to do with it.

Zip guns were a summer afternoon project, except our zip guns used 12 gauge shells.

I had gone to the San Francisco Gun Exchange and bought some armor piercing .50 cal rounds one time. My brother thought that'd be a great zip gun challenge.

Good thing we put it into a crook of tree and used a string to pull the trigger. The tree was missing part of the branch and we got peppered with shrapnel. We never tried that one again.

My mom was aghast all all these fun and games. It reminded her too well of being 13 and training with pitch forks and sharpened bamboo poles to fight the Americans when they invaded the islands of Japan.

Politically, I'm a registered Republican. Too lazy to change it, and it allows me to vote in the primaries. I voted for Harry Brown before this last election, and Ron Paul this last one. I'm not sure "conservative" is the right description for me. I'm more of a Constitutionalist. I think just about everything we need is in there and in The Bill of Rights.

Socially? I really don't care what you do as long as you aren't parading it around. That's why there are doors on bedrooms. Just don't involve children or animals, and I won't take any interest in what you're doing. I think all drugs should be legalized. The results of a persons poor choices belong in a civil court, not a criminal court, unless someone is killed.

Religion. I like CS Lewis's idea of "mere Christianity." I'm a Christian, but that doesn't mean I don't respect your belief system. It's just the one that seems to best fit the things I have experienced in this life. Leave my Nativity alone on Christmas, and I won't harass you over your displays or lack thereof.

Racial Politics. In my opinion, its for people who can't develop a marketable skill and only seem to be able to generate an income by inciting suspicion and hatred. It is one of the worst threats that this nation faces internally.

Well, hopefully this will give you some insight to me. If you have any questions, I'll do my best to answer.

Thanks for stopping by.

6 comments:
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American Prepper said...
February 2, 2009 at 4:00 AM  

awesome post. Good to know more about ya!

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mmpaints said...
February 2, 2009 at 9:37 AM  

Wow, proud to be a network member with you.

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TEAM HALL said...
February 2, 2009 at 11:38 AM  

That was great, Catman!!

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erniesjourney said...
February 5, 2009 at 5:38 PM  

Love it! You did an awesome job in summarizing who you are!

Ernie

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Kymber said...
February 10, 2009 at 5:38 AM  

Thanks Catman - i really enjoyed reading this!

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Anonymous said...
November 30, 2009 at 4:34 PM  

Uncanny.

I'm a Hall (living in rural VA), relative of Lyman's brother, with the same prepper mentality from my childhood. We had similar teen years, too, all the way down to the rocket launchers!

Must be the blood!

Glad to know you're out there. Drop me a line if you like: alwayslearningstuff@yahoo.com.

Best,
Chris Hall

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