Get Your Mind Out Of The Gutter
I recently visited my old prepper buddy, Mark. He's a gear guy and always got something new and cool. Mark has about 30 years of martial arts training and has been a police defensive tactics instructor for about the last 10 years. Today he showed me his bull whips.
Unbeknownst to me, Mark took up bull whips about a year ago. He's had some one-on-one training with a whip master in North Carolina and regularly practices. His three whips are all made of 550 cord, and cost between $125 and $250. They are 4.5, 6 and 8 feet long (past the handle). Mark has been buying his whips from Noreast Whips.
Whips have a 3,000 year history, and are still in use today around the world. Aside from the traditional cattle drive, in skilled hands, they have a number of uses, which include being used in a fitness regimen.
The main point of today though, is the 4.5 foot martial arts whip, called the MA Bull. Mark gave me a very cool demonstration of its potential use. It is short enough to be very maneuverable, and then the weighted handle can be reversed and used as a nun chuk, or slung out like a Chinese dart. Naturally, a person would probably not choose a whip as a primary weapon, but Mark gave me examples of being on his morning jog and being approached by a threatening dog. Whips are not used to strike an animal, but to crack or pop just away from the animal's head. He also showed how it could be used to strike a venomous snake that was in your path.
Obviously, a bullwhip is not for everyone, and there is a pretty good chance of injury if you don't know what you're doing, but it has its uses, and might have a role in your preps. I'm trying to talk Mark into making a demonstration video for me. Let me know if you think that would be interesting to see.
Do You Have Chaps?
I got an email not too long ago from a friend in Texas who almost had a tragedy from his chainsaw. It dug into his leg, and only his knee cap kept the blade from taking off his leg. He's going to have his leg in a cast for a while, but he's thankful to still have a leg to put in a cast. Over 40 years of using a chainsaw and he had never been hurt before. I told him I'd been thinking about getting some chaps and asked him if he thought they would have made a difference in his case. He said that he usually wore chaps, but he was in a hurry and didn't take the time to get them... to his regret. So yes, chaps can save you from serious injury with a chainsaw. I don't use mine much in the summer, but will definitely get some before fall gets here. I'm looking at this particular model.