Sunday, March 10, 2013
Sunday Reading - Road Trip
I really needed to be checking and feeding bees but a promise is a promise so instead I did another round of ammo checking the regional stores and getting a feel for things out beyond my general rural area. Locally ammo stores are bad now. Still no small rifle primers or 5.56 ammo period, none, all the other size primers are available though just not in the old brands we are used to. 7.62x39 has joined the 5.56 lately without even the cheap steel stuff being around. No brass in any popular calibers except 9mm. The local wal-mart's are even out of the 100 round 12 ga. target load packs believe it or not.
I found a little .45ACP and 7.62x54 ammo still in St. Louis. Cabella's up there had bins of plastic AR-15 30 round magazines at 25 bucks each on the low end up to $30.00 for the higher end. I almost picked up a couple then didn't. I have a good number of them already and I am not paying $25.00 for something that was selling for $10.00 or less only a year ago. Just not doing it. If they pass a ban I will be kicking myself for passing these up but at these prices and availability it is buy what ammo I can find or buy magazines. I can no longer do both at the same time and my guess is I will feel an ammo shortage more painfully than a magazine one.
There were a lot of people out and about Saturday. The parking lots were full and there seemed to be shoppers out in force which has not been my normal observations lately. It did turn into a really nice day as I mentioned so maybe they were just out to be out but the traffic was more like 2001 levels than the 1990's I have been noticing.
Still there are other signs. For one I have found myself pulling old music radio tricks lately that I haven't done in decades. Back when I was a teen or in my 20's after returning from the army the radio station selection around here was pretty pitiful. There were only a few stations that played anything even remotely "new" and they were not really dedicated but would constantly switch to sports programing. It was a constant hunt and switch for which stations were playing music and which were running the college games. Frequently all the local stations would be running the same MU basketball game at the same time.
By the 90's this scenario had pretty much come to a stop. The local selections had finally reached a point to where everyone had a station to fit their tastes. I also was able to stop buying super tuners to pick up St. Louis stations as Columbia had a choice I liked. Well radio station selection appears to be once again back to the 80's and I am pulling the same old tricks, even lamenting the point that I traveled beyond the St. Louis stations operating range. A couple of stations have stopped broadcasting and a couple others are taking up the old sports feed trick again. One station even switched programing to nothing but sports feed.
There maybe other factors at play here. Many are blaming the internet and satellite but I am just not buying that. Those things have been active for years longer than this decline and it appears to me to be more of a cash flow problem than declining listeners. The advertisers are just not there to support such a wide selection. My guess is this is just another early indicator as services and amenities shrink back into consolidated areas. Mrs. PP was pissy a few months back when one station that had run the same syndicated morning show for decades suddenly dropped it. She was very fond of that show and finally found another station over the internet so she can listen to it in the morning at home as she gets ready.
Amenities, services and road infra-structure are the first signs of decline. Less gravel being spread, fewer roads paved and more potholes allowed to remain. Eventually those become the norm and you hardly notice them anymore and the roads around here are bad. Then small stores begin to close forcing you to travel just a bit further for things or rearranging your pattern to buying more during less frequent trips. The power of choice is slowly eroded away as well especially at the outter edges making trips to the "big city" once again a treat. Oh yes I remember those days and I can see them coming back once again.
The one thing that makes me different is that I don't see these changes as bad or unwelcome. The increased entertainment choices brought with it increased regulation and a decrease in other freedoms as well. Personally I prefer going about my business without tripping over joy riders from the cities and coming across speed traps every 5 miles.
Maybe I am just weird though.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!