Life in the time of Wuflu, Part 17: The Coming Economic Collapse (as well as things less alarming)

(This post was inspired by Peter at Bayou Renaissance Man.)

How’s that for a clickbait post title? We’ll get to the clickbait in a bit. First, some less alarming items that may be of interest.

A couple of weekends ago, the Freeholders and two other couples decided that enough was more than enough, and non-essentially pulled our RVs to a nearby RV park for a weekend of semi-social distancing. We all hung out together, but avoided the other folks. Supper Saturday night was retrieved from a local Tex-Mex restaurant. So far no one has contracted or died of Wuflu because of the transgression.

Last weekend was both Mother’s Day and my birthday. Family and friends rolled both celebrations into one, and it was nice to have everyone over. The house felt like it had life in it again. We’ve missed having folks over and going to see folks.

There was, however, a fatality that ensued from the festivities. On their way home, Old Friend and his wife hit a deer in their almost new Cadillac SUV. Damage to the SUV wasn’t serious, but will be expensive-grill, grill supporting structure, radiator and so on. The deer, unfortunately, survived, and therein lies a tale.

When we all got there (both kids, Son-In-Law and myself, in 4 vehicles) we started securing things as best we could, setting out traffic warning devices and such. We noticed the deer was still alive, but apparently severely injured but incapacitated. My first instinct was to put it out of its misery, but as Old Friend noted, “Not deer season.” And the wildlife guys around here have no sense of humor. So we left the deer, hoping it would expire quickly.

Uh, no. The State Trooper arrived. I had already secured my pistol in my truck, because I know their drill. He was very calm about the whole thing (surprising so for a really young guy, I’m happy to note). He did his thing, then we had to deal with the deer. Dragging it into the ditch, he asked if I would mind doing the shot, I suspect to save himself paperwork. I didn’t mind. I used the little Ruger LCP I had on me and put a bullet into the left side of the deer’s head. Looked like a good hit, but the deer started kicking. Not good.

Another shot, this time in the top of the head just forward of the ears. Through and through wound, with arterial blood spurting from the top and running freely from the bottom. (For what it’s worth, the ammo was Hornady Critical Defense.) Still, the deer did not die. The trooper had to use his sidearm, which is chambered in .357 Sig, to finally dispatch the poor critter. Needless to say, I felt bad for the deer. I added to its pain, and that wasn’t the plan.

I’ve also reconsidered the LCP as a carry gun if away from home. I think that’s going to end. I’ve already started carrying my LC9 S Pro. No more rounds, but a significant power bump since it’s a 9mm. I’ll keep the LCP, and I’ll probably carry it around the house to some extent, but once I am outside the wire, it’s time for something with more “oomph”. If it couldn’t deal with a 75 pound deer at point-blank range, I’m not sure I want to trust it with a bad guy or two.

Obviously, this isn’t scientific, and an anecdote does not equal data. Still, I’m not as comfortable with the little .380 as I once was. While it’s wonderfully convenient-as in, it doesn’t get caught on things while I’m working-it’s not comforting now. I’m in the process of working out how I will constantly carry the somewhat larger gun. New gear, perhaps even a new gun, may be in my future.

As a part of the new ham shack, I had to move the gun safe. I took advantage of this to do a totally new inventory. That lead to considering what guns I no longer wanted. At this point, I’ve sold 3 long guns and made a tidy profit doing so. Two more are consigned with a local dealer, who I visited yesterday to pick up money from one sale and drop off the two mentioned. While there, I was looking at his depleted stock. Two guns that struck my eye were a Glock 48 and a Sig 365LX.

Just handling them, I can say that both felt good in my hand. They’re both single stack 9s, but with a capacity of 10+1 and 12+1 respectively-a nice increase from my Ruger. I particularly like the fact that the Sig is already cut for a red dot sight. But adding up the numbers, the Sig, a Sig Romeo Zero red dot, a few extra mags and a holster or two is on the far side of $1000. I’m going to have to think on that sort of investment long and hard. I’m going to check with some local ranges that do rentals and see if any of them have a pistol or two fitted with a red dot so I can “try before you buy”.

Now, about that click-bait. I posted over a week ago about the evidence of economic damage I’m seeing locally. That is just getting better and better. The local news has had a story or three every day featuring another manufacturing business, retail store or restaurant closing. The national news is no better, but seems to be concentrating on retail chains such as Lord and Taylor and Neiman-Marcus. I keep seeing various cities and states saying that they have to keep people locked up in their homes or the world will end. Good grief, yesterday Los Angeles said they’d be keeping people confined for another 3 months. What the actual eff?

Grocery stores are still less than fully stocked, although I’ve seen differences in stocking levels between various chains. I suspect at least one well-known chain may actually go under, but that’s just a suspicion. If it does, that will be an event. It would also collapse grocery price competition in a number of states, North Carolina included. Many smaller cities and towns would be left without a grocery store, unless you count Dollar General as a grocery store.

Gas is going up in price, and more people are on the road. Heck, we were on the road last Friday, driving to Raleigh to pick up a radio from a silent key’s estate. Not normal traffic on the roads, but well up from a few weeks ago. Same with the parts of Raleigh we saw, especially once one got off the main drags. Foot traffic in neighborhoods seemed normal from what I remember. We patronized a Cook Out for supper, and the drive-thru stayed 3-5 deep in each of two lanes the entire time we sat in the parking lot eating. I guess the shutdown isn’t a killer for all businesses.

If this keeps up, we’re going to see a lot of people losing cars, houses, and most everything else. Word is that crime is going up locally. I know that in neighboring Winston Salem it seems that there is a shooting every day. Local Internet watering holes are starting to have a lot of reports of suspicious people and suspicious vehicles loitering in various neighborhoods.

Governments at the local and state level are also complaining about reduced “revenues”. (That’s tax collections for those of us on the paying side.) They may have to start trimming their budgets, and of course the early candidates floated are things like libraries and parks. Got to start getting folks ready to approve soaking those still employed with even more taxes. God forbid we looked at cutting bureaucracies or finding efficiencies. Or looked at programs we could simply eliminate.

Law enforcement is on the roads and writing tickets. Revenue enhancement at work, I suppose.

I’m looking to add to food and firewood stocks as much as I can. I’m not expecting things to collapse, but I’m also not expecting boom times either. I think we’re in for a good long period of

The average Millennial isn’t going to know what hit them.

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