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DJ CherishTheLuv, Music Missionary – HuffPost

Posted: June 30, 2017 at 5:04 pm

by Coral Lee, Heritage Radio Network Research & Radio Intern

I sat down with Cynthia Cherish Malaran, AKA DJ CherishTheLuv, this past Friday afternoon at Robertas patio. Swatting away summer flies, we chatted about the music we love, versus music we like, versus the music weve missed. This is how Cynthia, also an ordained minister and self proclaimed music missionary, has come to define her DJing style her creative formula. By mixing nostalgic tracks into todays hits, she touches the mind, heart, and soul, allowing those on the dancefloor to even if just for 3 minutes wiggle away the nonstop stresses of life. Music is a happy pill. One you swallow through your ears.

On surviving breast cancer, Cynthia attributes her wellness to keeping her head in the music. She continued to DJ all throughout chemotherapy, even to other patients through the walls of the chemo suites at Memorial Sloan Kettering. If you're miserable, and getting that kind of hardcore treatment into your body, you will barely survive it. I told myself that if I could project manage my cancer, help others and grow because of it, it would all be worth it. Otherwise, I'd just be destroyed.

DJ CherishTheLuv DJing from her chemo chair to fellow patients at the Evelyn Lauder Breast Cancer suites at Memorial Sloan Kettering

As a result of making her positive attitude public over social media, Cynthia was invited to become a voice on Heritage Radio Network, by then-Executive Director, Erin Fairbanks. She started by producing her first show Primary Food, in which she documented the good things she "fed" herself with. While secondary food refers to what you put in your mouth, primary food, a concept she learned at Institute for Integrative Nutrition, is everything else in life that nourishes you before you eat. So you'll notice, if you had a crappy day, you will go eat some crappy food. DJing is a form of primary food for me when I am DJing, being fed by a great crowd, I always end the night like how did I not eat for 6 hours? Because I was being fed spiritually, psychologically, emotionally and I knew I had to keep this concept first and foremost as I was going through cancer treatment. I knew I had to load my life with really good primary foods: friends, music, art, entertainment, petting my dog, traveling, to keep my happiness levels high, so my body could repair itself.

Refusing to see life as mean and cruel, Cynthia, armed with music, is now working to re-introduce as much good as she possibly can into the world. She recently returned from a 3-week trip to Ecuador, in which she taught young girls at an orphanage how to DJ. Actually, I taught these young teens how to express themselves creatively and loudly, under the guise of DJing. These girls have been traumatized. Silenced. Teaching them how to express themselves gives them the green light to ask for what they want. To say no! To ask for a raise at work. It can change their life. Even save their life. I went there thinking I had something to teach them. But actually, they taught me I came back a few days ago, Cynthia reports, and I was looking at all these sad, unhappy faces here in our awesome New York City, and I was so confused. I came back and realized we have everything. We have everything and yet, we're not happy. The girls at the orphanage have the bare minimum, yet they are so happy. Why? Because they have each other. Here, we have objects and things like cars, smart phones, wifi things we love but they will never love us back. We may have everything but we don't have one another. I learned that the more things I have doesn't contribute to happiness at all. Maybe I even have so much stuff I can't see what my life is really about or like, maybe I have so much stuff I don't really know who I am.

A few months ago, Cynthia got a phone call from Maike Both, founder of the "Unfuck the World movement. Maike asked Cynthia if she would be interested in coming down to Ecuador and meet with legendary recording engineer/producer, Erwin Musper, who has worked with David Bowie, Bon Jovi, Elton John, Metallica, Def Leppard and more, with his name on 80 million records sold, and counting, to spread some good vibes and cheer. When I was asked to fly down to Ecuador and meet the orphans, I immediately pictured myself teaching them some DJing so I jumped at the opportunity to help out.

I packed my portable Pioneer mixer, thinking OK, I'm going to gift these kids ME, Cynthia laughs. Of course you go into something like this, just like with my work at Riker's, thinking you're going in with something to give them. And then you realize it's you who has the deficits, and they gift you so much knowledge, understanding, eye-opening love. I think in the past 2.5 weeks, I've gotten hugged more than in the past two years.

Cynthia shares how teaching the girls products of rape, abuse, neglect, subject to silencing how to express themselves was profound in so many ways. I don't speak Spanish; they dont speak much English, but music is the universal language, and rhythm transcends words. The kids had never heard a song sped up or slowed down before, they were totally shocked! I didn't want to teach them how to be a DJ, but how to express, how to experiment, how to feel free. I didnt learn how to express myself and be free until my thirties, and I'm a born and bred Manhattanite. Even just teaching them to hit pause or play when they wanted to, adjust the volume to their likingI could see it was doing something for them. It was giving them the green light to make a difference. And I know that they'll take that lesson and apply it somewhere.

DJ CherishTheLuv teaching young teenage girls DJing basics at an orphanage in Ecuador.

Cynthia tells of how on one of the last days of her visit, one of the shyest girls became Cynthias student teacher. This student stepped up and would say in Spanish, to the other girls, no, this is how you do it, and would show the other girls while Cynthia just stood back back and watched in awe. Shy and reserved for a myriad of reasons the girl was new to the orphanage she was, for the first time, speaking up and being heard and respected. Through DJing, she had a way to confidently and comfortably socialize with the others at the orphanage.

DJ CherishTheLuv and some of her DJ students at the orphanage.

These girls taught me how to think about survivalism. As a breast cancer survivor, I thought I had the understanding of surviving down pat but there's really so much more. The youngest is a 2 month old orphan who was brought there at 2 days old. Her mom is 12. She was a product of rape by the uncle, and the orphanage is raising this kid like family. It's a paradise there, because they all have each other. There are the mamitas (the women who run the orphanage and keep daily order) and the psychologists on-site. They do everything they can to make sure the kids are really cared for, and the kids care for each other. The way they experience love might not be from their parents, but learnt from this layer of their life.

Cynthia told me about a typical day at the orphanage. They wake up 4 or 5 in the morning, they start preparing food, take care of their own needs (showering, fixing up their space, getting dressed), and get their school supplies together. Kids that are old enough, go to school regular schools. They come back at 2pm to the orphanage. They eat. There's playtime. Erwin Musper has set up English classes (taught by volunteers), and guitar classes where Erwin teaches them how to play Beatles songs and more. Each week the mamitas choose a few of the girls to have a special night on the town on the Muspers. I got to go along for pizza night. The girls were drinking soda after soda after soda, so happy it was so sweet.

One evening, Cynthia remembers, a taxi cab pulled up with a young woman. Erwin explained that she was raised in the orphanage, got old enough to leave and go to university to become a social worker, and she returns to visit her younger sister, living at the orphanage. Their system works! All these boys and girls have transcended their traumatic pasts enough to now envision a future with dreams to be something: one girl wants to be a marine biologist. They know what they want to do. They have dreams because of all this incredible love and support. I want to keep helping them get support.

Erwin collected funds to help them get a refrigerator; they just recently got ceiling fans because the orphanage is made of cinder blocks and metal tin roofs that trap the heat when the sun is out, making sleep very miserable. The older boys live in a place called Gandhi a bit down the road. Cynthia has donated money from her earnings DJing at Whole Foods Bryant Park, for the construction of raised beds, so that each of the older boys can have their own garden and learn how to grow food, feed one another, share, and learn about responsibility.

Erwin Musper and half of the children at the orphanage.

Erwin photographs everything; kids are able to watch themselves grow. If you're already robbed of your identity who you are and where you're from and then you're able to get pictures, physical pictures, and see yourself grow... these kids are going to value this so much decades from now. This is the stuff they can look back on. The good stuff.

Going to the orphanage was another piece of healing for Cynthia. Yes, going through cancer was heavy, scary for me, but if I also experience really great stuff, it crowds out the bad. Being at the orphanage teaching DJing outweighed other negative experiences. I feel like everyone needs to see that genuine love, happiness, and care exists. This is a place where the kids are happy, dancing and celebrating everyday, because if you have 60 kids and there are 52 weeks in a year, there's going to be a birthday all the time. You cant just focus on the bad; you're going to see this world as mean and cruel. But instead, see the good: Erwin being there, me being there, the kids eating birthday cake every week, singing happy birthday more than you'll ever do in a month's time. I feel like my family grew. I never gave birth to children in my life, but I feel like I have 60 kids. That's really something.

Meet the children in this video created by DJ CherishTheLuv and Erwin Musper. Consider donating to the orphanage and becoming a part of the family by visiting this link.

Cynthia Cherish Malaran, Rev. DJ CherishTheLuv, is host of Primary Food and Wedding Cake on Heritage Radio Network. She is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutritions Health Coach Training Program, where she learned about Primary Food and other nutrition and health coaching concepts. Learn more about the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

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DJ CherishTheLuv, Music Missionary - HuffPost

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What it Means to Finish Pikes Peak + Results – Hot Rod Network – Hot Rod Network

Posted: June 29, 2017 at 11:04 am

With no small amount of effort, RJ Gottlieb and his infamous Big Red Camaro came back from the ashes to finish in Open Class with an 11:08.857 (placing Fourth), while PPIHC Time Attack veteran Kash Singh brought his street-driven (3,590-mile round-trip), twin-turbo 2017 Ford Mustang GT, supported by AMSOIL and Tire Rack, with a personal best of13:22.636 after dodging a few goats and fog. Full results here.

If you aint first, yer last! is probably the most well-meaning quotes in racing, but to the guys and gals who truly understand what sweat equity is while under a race car, thats not what its all about. Some races are about pure survivalism, our Gear Vendors HOT ROD Drag Week, powered by Dodge, is one of them. More than climbing to the top of the podium, seeing the peak of the mountain is worth more weight in respect and satisfaction than just about anything else winning is just the bonus.

Its a logistical nightmare for everyone. Think of a nine-hour work day that begins at 2am and ends sometime after 11am thats how long were on the mountain just running cars during the four-day practice. Ateam has to figure out how to get their car up the hill (meaning, a smaller truck and trailer, or sometimes both; others drive their cars up), unloaded, prepped, practiced for about three runs, repacked, and off the main roadway by 9am (so that the Pikes Peak Highway can open to the public for the day).

Assuming your morning goes well (it usually doesnt), youve still got to inspect and maintain the race car, butthen its a third-shift work schedule at minimum. And if the day doesnt go well? Stack that 9-to-5 work-day block on whatever madness youve got to fix for tomorrows practice (again, starting the day at 2am), because for many drivers theres no choice in dropping practice days for fear of disqualification (be it meeting a minimum number of practice days for rookies or making sure you can run your day of qualifying). Theres more stories of 48-labor-hour days than there are of smooth ones, but its the blurred nights of masochistic work that mean you make it to race day.

This, of course, after youve gone anywhere from 3,000 to 8,000 feet higher in elevation from where you woke up in the thin atmosphere, the oxygen deprivation not only slows your body, but also your mind. Simple things, like whered the torque wrench go? become SAT tests, and anything more complex turns into a brain train-wreck.Add up the weeks of stress coming into an event, and you have a recipe for some wrench-tossing shouting matches. Butgood race is dependant on a good team with good communication, and Pikes will test every bit of that and you might not even be cognizant of why youre mad at the little things and it might ruin friendships. Its these bands of misfits, however cohesive, that must maintain a self-destructive machine over the course of the week in order to finish.

Then theres the mountain itself: In just the 12.4-mile course, theres 156 corners with varying elevation change, camber, and radius changes. Guys who see the newly-paved mountain as a home for their road-paint-scraping Time Attack or Prototype-class cars are rudely awaken when their belly panscrash into the rough pavement or lift tires through the corners due to the crazy articulation needed in highly-banked hair-pins (some racers use rally-inspired suspension combinations to get the travel they need).Theres no run-off, only rocks, guardrail, or sky and theres a whole lot more sky than there is of the other two.

If you have an off, its going to ruin your day or worse and if you need parts, youre sourcing them in a mountain town that can barely find internet service, much less an oil pan to your Audi or a one-off intercooler that you just crushed after spinning at Boulder Park.

On any given day, youre facing rain, hail, goats, marmots, deer, and fog, just to throw a wild car (or three) at you every day. Every green flag in practice, no matter how bad you need that seat time on the mountain, is throwing the how-can-this-all-go-wrong dice. The risks are the same as race day, by and large, but the reward is stillwaiting for you at 14,115 feet on Sunday.

Remember how youre already starving for oxygen and sense when you unload the car? The engine and its cooling systems are struggling worse. Not only does air density affect horsepower, but it also affects how much heat can be shed from the car. With less air density, theres less matter to absort heat with. This not only raises cooling temps to some hilarious levels, and often ones impossible to reach at sea-level, but also raises under-hood air- and braking-temps well-beyond what youll typically see. The catch-22 of Pikes is that the longer into the run you are, as the car builds heat in every system, the thinner the air gets with your increasing elevation. This can be an annoyance during practice or a back-stabbing surprise during race day as we learned in 2017.

Right if you havent crashed, overheated, or threaten to divorce someone youre not even married to, then youve made it to race day. More than likely, by this point, youve inadvertently relied on some new friends to get here (call it the Pikes Family), and the weight of the weeks (months years) stress is certainly felt in the 5-point harness belts as they pull you into your seat. The past five days have felt like an endurance race in their own, youve maybe got 18 hours of sleep since last Sunday, and youre inching closer and closer to that timing clock.

When the flag drops, it all stops.

The rest of the game is on the driver, from then on out. The foundation has been laid, but its time to see how far they can build their run up the mountain. Where stress has peaked, sleep has bottomed-out. The car, scarred from a week of practice and hustle, is right there with you. The best of course memorization and notes falls way to subconscious actions and mistakes, but as the scenery changes from dense forest to moon-like rockscapes, you know progress is being made. While the car grasps every oxygen molecule it can, your lungs are doing the same as you fight the wheel and wield the rest.

Nothing is exactly like it was in practice, and you dont know if thats from the everything-deprivation or the incoming weather, but fog begats a lot of hell from mother nature, and the imperative mission is to get to the top. Sometimes theres a friends car pulled off safely, with them waving you on; but other times, you may not know why theyre upside down in a ditch, and you have to maintain concentration in the drive and trust in Pikes Peaks safety crews (them being one of the most dedicated groups out there is no small relief).

Once at the Peak, you feel about as light as a cloud theres a group of racers whove all been through the same hell you have, and theres cramped cozy little donut shop to huddle in as the days weather continues to roll in.Who won? Who knows better yet, who cares? Youve all just survived a hell week like no other. If youve made it to the top, youve proven more than a few things about yourself as a driver and more importantly how strong you and your team is. Not every week or run is perfect, and thats Pikes for ya! is how more than a few folk write the year off, but the race is more than just the time spent between green and checkered flags: eating those fourteen-thousand-foot donuts with your fellow racers means everything else from here on out is just a little bit easier, even if you cant always have that Pikes family around you.

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‘It Comes at Night’ a Spellbinding Tale of Family and Survival – Shepherd Express

Posted: at 11:04 am

Grandfather caught the sickness with labored breathing, skin broken into welts and blood flowing from his mouth. His family had no choice: In the opening, heart-tearing scene from It Comes at Night, son-in-law Paul (Joel Edgerton) and grandson Travis (Kelvin Harrison Jr.), wearing masks and gloves, lead the old man to a clearing outside the house. They cover his face, shoot him in the head, set his body on fire and trudge sadly away as smoke from the pyre reaches the treetops of the dark forest.

It Comes at Night

Joel Edgerton

Kelvin Harrison Jr.

Directed by Trey Edward Shults

Rated R

The why? is finally explained many minutes into the film, but a visual clue appears early on in the form of a print hung on the wall of the familys house: A Bruegel image of the Plague with bodies and skulls heaped against a lurid sky. An unexplained pandemic has swept across civilization, apparently leaving only scattered bands of survivors vulnerable to contagion by air or touch. The interracial family at the heart of It Comes at Night occupies a rambling house in the woods, windows boarded up with only one tightly bolted entrancea red door.

Written and directed by Trey Edward Shults, It Comes at Night is a gripping end-time drama steeped in the conventions of horror. The spooky tracking shots, slowly inching down the dark corridors, suggest a ghoulish apparition is imminent. But the clanging that erupts from the nocturnal darkness comes from living hands. Will (Christopher Abbott) is merely a stranger in search of water. Paul beats Will and ties him to a tree until assured that the stranger is healthy and means no harm. Soon enough, Wills wife Kim (Riley Keough) and their little boy come to live in the big forest house, contributing chickens, goats and canned goods to the larder. The two families seem to bond around common meals but distrust lingers.

The small cast is perfectly in pitch. Edgerton plays Paul with a hard face and eyes continually scanning for danger. Although he says he was a history teacher, his reflexes are those of a Special Forces officer commanding a vulnerable outpost. His wife, Sarah (Carmen Ejogo), is no less determined but softens his deadly survivalism with a touch of empathy. Their son Travis, 17, sensitive and artistic, suffers from nightmares that tend to come true. Will, a mechanic before the sickness came, brings another set of practical hands; Kims presence inadvertently adds sexual tension to Travis already bulging kitbag of burdens.

Ebbing and flowing between unease and high anxiety, the emotional strain of It Comes at Night never ceases. Suspense and suspicion are palpable in the face of an implacable specter: the microbes of a sickness without a cure. The plague might enter the house with any stranger that knocks on the red door.

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Are you ready when disaster strikes? These Minnesota doomsday preppers are – Charleston Express

Posted: June 26, 2017 at 5:06 pm

By Richard ChinMinneapolis Star Tribune

COLUMBIA HEIGHTS, Minn. The tiny house that Bryan Korbel is building in his Columbia Heights, Minn., driveway will have all the comforts of a 260-square-foot home.

There'll be a shower with an on-demand water heater, a microwave oven, stove, composting toilet, satellite dish and power provided by solar panels. It's being built on a trailer, so it can be towed anywhere.

Korbel's self-sufficient micro-cottage isn't being built out of a Thoreau-esque desire to simplify or to achieve a chic Dwell magazine minimalist aesthetic.

He's building it for the end of the world.

When all hell breaks loose war, natural disaster, a breakdown in civil society Korbel will hitch his house on wheels to a 1972 Ford F100 pickup. (That's before the advent of computerized car systems, which Korbel says will be fried by the electromagnetic pulse created by a nuclear blast.)

He'll haul the structure and his family to a patch of land he has north of Hinckley, Minn., stopping to get supplies he's cached along the way in PVC tubes buried underground. He's prepared, he believes, to ride out anything that man or nature might throw at him.

Korbel, 53, is a prepper, of course, that breed of person who stockpiles food, toilet paper and ammunition to last not days, but months just in case.

Preppers see themselves as prudent, sensible ants in a world of feckless grasshoppers, even while they recognize that others consider them paranoid conspiracy theorists and doomsday prophets.

"My wife gave me the nickname Mad Max," Korbel said. "My brother, he thinks it's nuts. He's lazy. I already know he's going to be knocking on my door."

Predictions that the end is near are as old as Noah. More modern manifestations have included people who felt the need to build home fallout shelters during the Cold War and pessimists who feared the worst from a Y2K collapse. Events such as 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina have continued to fuel fears.

The latest bad news: This year, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists decided to reset its famous Doomsday Clock "a universally recognized indicator of the world's vulnerability to catastrophe " from three minutes to only two-and-a-half minutes before midnight.

The scientific worrywarts cited tensions between the U.S. and Russia, North Korean nuclear tests, climate change, a rise in "strident nationalism" and "intemperate statements" from President Donald Trump and even "lethal autonomous weapons systems" yeah, killer robots among the looming existential threats to humanity.

According to the Bulletin scientists, in the 70-year history of the Doomsday Clock, the last time things have been this bad for the planet was 1953, just after the U.S. and the Soviet Union developed the first hydrogen bombs. At that time, the scientists deemed we were only two minutes to apocalypse.

Selling peace of mind

No wonder Costco is selling $3,399.99 packages of freeze-dried and dehydrated emergency foods that promise 31,500 total servings, enough to feed four people for a year, with a shelf life of up to 25 years. The food shipment arrives on a pallet that is "black-wrapped for security and privacy."

Or you could buy end-of-the-world supplies from a specialty retailer such as Safecastle.com.

Safecastle was started by Prior Lake resident Vic Rantala after 9/11 because he saw a niche for an online source of affordable, quality, long-term stored food.

The company has since branched out to sell surveillance robots, radiation detectors, folding "bug-out" bicycles intended for paratroopers and a 35-piece pet survival kit designed for a "CATastrophe."

"We sell stuff nobody else sells," Rantala said.

You can even buy an underground fallout shelter that costs more than $100,000.

"We early on developed a relationship with a steel plate shelter builder in Louisiana," Rantala said. "Our builder has done seven-figure bunkers for people."

He said his best-seller is something homier: canned, cooked bacon with a shelf life of more than 10 years.

Rantala, 59, said his background has included service in the Army, intelligence work for the government and communications and consulting for corporations. But selling prepping gear has become "kind of like a life's mission."

The shelters he's sold have saved lives in tornadoes, he said. Some of the food he's sold to preppers ended up being eaten when the disaster turned out to be a job loss.

"We sell peace of mind to people," Rantala said.

Even though he sold the company a couple of years ago, he continues to work for it. He said sales are close to $50 million a year.

He estimates that as many as "10 percent of the population are into prepping these days," although he admits figures can be fuzzy because preppers are notoriously secretive about their preparations.

"Sometimes you don't even tell your family members," he said. "It can be a little bit of an obsession, I have to admit."

Nuts or narrative

"It's good to have something stored away," said Peter Behrens, a psychologist who recently retired as a professor at Penn State University in Lehigh Valley, Pa. "Some 72 hours' worth of food is great."

But he said prepping can turn into a "non-substance pathology," similar to hoarding and excessive gambling, when taken to the extreme.

"A lot of people get into this as a pastime," he said. But he said, "It's a slippery slope to becoming irrational and aggressive."

Behrens said prepping is cause for concern if a person starts hoarding firearms and ammunition and if more than 10 percent of a person's income is devoted to prepping. And he warns that prepping can be similar to being in a cult if a person gives up long-standing relationships with friends and family members to associate only with other preppers.

"This is a situation that revolves around anxiety," he said. "It doesn't match with rational behavior."

But Richard G. Mitchell, who studied survivalists as a sociology professor at Oregon State University, said preppers are people who may just want to resist a humdrum life of comfort and consumption. They want to create a personal narrative of themselves as the rugged individual who's going to survive disaster.

"They want a place where they feel meaningful," he said. "Survivalism is a storytelling process. There's a certain satisfaction to that."

He added, "These are people who are hobbyists. They're amused by the process. They're entertained by it. They're proud of it. They're nuts in the sense that they've not accepted the status quo."

Knowing he'll survive

Korbel has stored enough beans, lentils, rice, pasta and soup to feed his wife and their two sons still living at home for a year and a half. He's prepared to grow his own vegetables, mill his own grain and vacuum-seal the foods he's preserving.

"These are good for 50 years," Korbel said, showing off the homemade pemmican balls he's made of beef, peanut butter and nuts.

He stores a couple hundred gallons of water and enough gasoline to fill his truck tank three times. He's got gas masks that he bought at Fleet Farm, and suits to protect against a chemical attack that he bought online. There are weather radios, two-way radios and first aid kits on every level of his house. The upper floor has escape ladders.

He lives about 4.5 miles from the center of Minneapolis, a little too close in case a nuclear bomb goes off in the city center. Ten miles would be better, he said. But his wife is happy living in Columbia Heights, and the mortgage is almost paid off.

"Yeah, there'd be severe burns, structures coming down. But still survivable," he said.

Among the things that worry him are tornadoes, civil unrest, racial tensions, terrorists, conflict with Russia, a government that "goes rogue."

"I wouldn't consider myself a conspiracy theorist. But I do think about it a lot," he said. "If a comet lands on me, I'm not going to worry about it.

"My worst fear would be a financial breakdown" and a collapse of the monetary system, he said. "You've got people bartering in gold, silver, jewels." Or ammunition.

Korbel has set aside some of that as well, along with handguns, rifles and shotguns.

"I also have compound bows. My boys, they've trained in compound bows. My wife is trained in that," he said.

"You need to defend your property and yourself," he said. But he said, "I'm not prepping for a war. I'm not trying to hide anything. I'm not trying to overthrow the government. I don't want to get shot. I don't want to shoot anyone."

Korbel is a Metro Transit driver and an Army veteran who used to work as a carpenter, a contractor and a semitrailer truck driver. He's been married 25 years, and his wife is a nurse.

"He likes to be our protector," Betsy Korbel said. "There's a lot worse things to be doing."

Korbel said he's been a prepper about 12 years. Last year, he estimates, he spent about $7,000 on the activity.

"When I turn 80, I might turn around and look at this stuff and I might say, 'OK, maybe I bought too much,'" he said.

But he said he pays for prepping with side income he gets from recycling metals from old laptops and wires and driving for a food delivery service.

"I love it," Korbel said of his preoccupation with preparing. "It's something I enjoy."

"I know I'm going to be able to survive," he said.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency.

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Are you ready when disaster strikes? These Minnesota doomsday preppers are – Arkansas News

Posted: June 25, 2017 at 2:02 pm

By Richard ChinMinneapolis Star Tribune

COLUMBIA HEIGHTS, Minn. The tiny house that Bryan Korbel is building in his Columbia Heights, Minn., driveway will have all the comforts of a 260-square-foot home.

There'll be a shower with an on-demand water heater, a microwave oven, stove, composting toilet, satellite dish and power provided by solar panels. It's being built on a trailer, so it can be towed anywhere.

Korbel's self-sufficient micro-cottage isn't being built out of a Thoreau-esque desire to simplify or to achieve a chic Dwell magazine minimalist aesthetic.

He's building it for the end of the world.

When all hell breaks loose war, natural disaster, a breakdown in civil society Korbel will hitch his house on wheels to a 1972 Ford F100 pickup. (That's before the advent of computerized car systems, which Korbel says will be fried by the electromagnetic pulse created by a nuclear blast.)

He'll haul the structure and his family to a patch of land he has north of Hinckley, Minn., stopping to get supplies he's cached along the way in PVC tubes buried underground. He's prepared, he believes, to ride out anything that man or nature might throw at him.

Korbel, 53, is a prepper, of course, that breed of person who stockpiles food, toilet paper and ammunition to last not days, but months just in case.

Preppers see themselves as prudent, sensible ants in a world of feckless grasshoppers, even while they recognize that others consider them paranoid conspiracy theorists and doomsday prophets.

"My wife gave me the nickname Mad Max," Korbel said. "My brother, he thinks it's nuts. He's lazy. I already know he's going to be knocking on my door."

Predictions that the end is near are as old as Noah. More modern manifestations have included people who felt the need to build home fallout shelters during the Cold War and pessimists who feared the worst from a Y2K collapse. Events such as 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina have continued to fuel fears.

The latest bad news: This year, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists decided to reset its famous Doomsday Clock "a universally recognized indicator of the world's vulnerability to catastrophe " from three minutes to only two-and-a-half minutes before midnight.

The scientific worrywarts cited tensions between the U.S. and Russia, North Korean nuclear tests, climate change, a rise in "strident nationalism" and "intemperate statements" from President Donald Trump and even "lethal autonomous weapons systems" yeah, killer robots among the looming existential threats to humanity.

According to the Bulletin scientists, in the 70-year history of the Doomsday Clock, the last time things have been this bad for the planet was 1953, just after the U.S. and the Soviet Union developed the first hydrogen bombs. At that time, the scientists deemed we were only two minutes to apocalypse.

Selling peace of mind

No wonder Costco is selling $3,399.99 packages of freeze-dried and dehydrated emergency foods that promise 31,500 total servings, enough to feed four people for a year, with a shelf life of up to 25 years. The food shipment arrives on a pallet that is "black-wrapped for security and privacy."

Or you could buy end-of-the-world supplies from a specialty retailer such as Safecastle.com.

Safecastle was started by Prior Lake resident Vic Rantala after 9/11 because he saw a niche for an online source of affordable, quality, long-term stored food.

The company has since branched out to sell surveillance robots, radiation detectors, folding "bug-out" bicycles intended for paratroopers and a 35-piece pet survival kit designed for a "CATastrophe."

"We sell stuff nobody else sells," Rantala said.

You can even buy an underground fallout shelter that costs more than $100,000.

"We early on developed a relationship with a steel plate shelter builder in Louisiana," Rantala said. "Our builder has done seven-figure bunkers for people."

He said his best-seller is something homier: canned, cooked bacon with a shelf life of more than 10 years.

Rantala, 59, said his background has included service in the Army, intelligence work for the government and communications and consulting for corporations. But selling prepping gear has become "kind of like a life's mission."

The shelters he's sold have saved lives in tornadoes, he said. Some of the food he's sold to preppers ended up being eaten when the disaster turned out to be a job loss.

"We sell peace of mind to people," Rantala said.

Even though he sold the company a couple of years ago, he continues to work for it. He said sales are close to $50 million a year.

He estimates that as many as "10 percent of the population are into prepping these days," although he admits figures can be fuzzy because preppers are notoriously secretive about their preparations.

"Sometimes you don't even tell your family members," he said. "It can be a little bit of an obsession, I have to admit."

Nuts or narrative

"It's good to have something stored away," said Peter Behrens, a psychologist who recently retired as a professor at Penn State University in Lehigh Valley, Pa. "Some 72 hours' worth of food is great."

But he said prepping can turn into a "non-substance pathology," similar to hoarding and excessive gambling, when taken to the extreme.

"A lot of people get into this as a pastime," he said. But he said, "It's a slippery slope to becoming irrational and aggressive."

Behrens said prepping is cause for concern if a person starts hoarding firearms and ammunition and if more than 10 percent of a person's income is devoted to prepping. And he warns that prepping can be similar to being in a cult if a person gives up long-standing relationships with friends and family members to associate only with other preppers.

"This is a situation that revolves around anxiety," he said. "It doesn't match with rational behavior."

But Richard G. Mitchell, who studied survivalists as a sociology professor at Oregon State University, said preppers are people who may just want to resist a humdrum life of comfort and consumption. They want to create a personal narrative of themselves as the rugged individual who's going to survive disaster.

"They want a place where they feel meaningful," he said. "Survivalism is a storytelling process. There's a certain satisfaction to that."

He added, "These are people who are hobbyists. They're amused by the process. They're entertained by it. They're proud of it. They're nuts in the sense that they've not accepted the status quo."

Knowing he'll survive

Korbel has stored enough beans, lentils, rice, pasta and soup to feed his wife and their two sons still living at home for a year and a half. He's prepared to grow his own vegetables, mill his own grain and vacuum-seal the foods he's preserving.

"These are good for 50 years," Korbel said, showing off the homemade pemmican balls he's made of beef, peanut butter and nuts.

He stores a couple hundred gallons of water and enough gasoline to fill his truck tank three times. He's got gas masks that he bought at Fleet Farm, and suits to protect against a chemical attack that he bought online. There are weather radios, two-way radios and first aid kits on every level of his house. The upper floor has escape ladders.

He lives about 4.5 miles from the center of Minneapolis, a little too close in case a nuclear bomb goes off in the city center. Ten miles would be better, he said. But his wife is happy living in Columbia Heights, and the mortgage is almost paid off.

"Yeah, there'd be severe burns, structures coming down. But still survivable," he said.

Among the things that worry him are tornadoes, civil unrest, racial tensions, terrorists, conflict with Russia, a government that "goes rogue."

"I wouldn't consider myself a conspiracy theorist. But I do think about it a lot," he said. "If a comet lands on me, I'm not going to worry about it.

"My worst fear would be a financial breakdown" and a collapse of the monetary system, he said. "You've got people bartering in gold, silver, jewels." Or ammunition.

Korbel has set aside some of that as well, along with handguns, rifles and shotguns.

"I also have compound bows. My boys, they've trained in compound bows. My wife is trained in that," he said.

"You need to defend your property and yourself," he said. But he said, "I'm not prepping for a war. I'm not trying to hide anything. I'm not trying to overthrow the government. I don't want to get shot. I don't want to shoot anyone."

Korbel is a Metro Transit driver and an Army veteran who used to work as a carpenter, a contractor and a semitrailer truck driver. He's been married 25 years, and his wife is a nurse.

"He likes to be our protector," Betsy Korbel said. "There's a lot worse things to be doing."

Korbel said he's been a prepper about 12 years. Last year, he estimates, he spent about $7,000 on the activity.

"When I turn 80, I might turn around and look at this stuff and I might say, 'OK, maybe I bought too much,'" he said.

But he said he pays for prepping with side income he gets from recycling metals from old laptops and wires and driving for a food delivery service.

"I love it," Korbel said of his preoccupation with preparing. "It's something I enjoy."

"I know I'm going to be able to survive," he said.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency.

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Where billionaires are stockpiling land for the apocalypse: Map – The Real Deal Magazine

Posted: June 19, 2017 at 7:03 pm

Where billionaires are stockpiling land for the apocalypse: Map
The Real Deal Magazine
U.S. billionaires are making significant land grabs in America's heartland, where the climate is mild and the locations are conducive to survivalism and living on the land. The Midwest is home to several fortified shelters and vacation homes where the ...

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Map reveals where billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse – Business Insider Nordic

Posted: June 17, 2017 at 1:59 pm

When the apocalypse arrives, life goes on. That's the possibility some are preparing for, at least.

A new article in Forbes suggests the US billionaires are making significant land grabs in America's heartland, where the climate is mild and the locations are conducive to survivalism and living on the land. The Midwest is home to several fortified shelters and vacation homes where the super-rich could happily live out their post-doomsday (or retirement) days.

Reid Hoffman, the cofounder of LinkedIn and a notable investor, told The New Yorker earlier this year he estimated more than 50% of Silicon Valley billionaires had bought some level of "apocalypse insurance," like a bunker.

Fortified shelters, built to withstand catastrophic events from viral epidemic to nuclear war, seem to be experiencing a wave of interest in general as hints of a nuclear conflict ramp up.

Real estate developers are capitalizing on the moment with luxury underground doomsday shelters that cost as much as $3 million. These post-apocalyptic homes, often built on retired military bases or in missile silos, include luxury amenities and safety features like nuclear blast doors, armored trucks, and massive stores of food and water.

The map below reveals where American billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse.

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Map reveals where billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse - Business Insider Nordic

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Map reveals where billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse – SFGate

Posted: June 15, 2017 at 9:03 pm

Photo: Evan Vucci, Associated Press

In this Dec. 14, 2016, file photo, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos speaks during a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump and technology industry leaders at Trump Tower in New York.

In this Dec. 14, 2016, file photo, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos speaks during a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump and technology industry leaders at Trump Tower in New York.

Forbes ranks the world's billionaires.

Forbes ranks the world's billionaires.

Name: David Koch - 10

This year's net worth: $39.6

Source: Koch Industries

Country: U.S.

Name: David Koch - 10

This year's net worth: $39.6

Source: Koch Industries

Country: U.S.

Name: Charles Koch - 9

This year's net worth: $39.6

Source: Koch Industries

Country: U.S.

Name: Charles Koch - 9

This year's net worth: $39.6

Source: Koch Industries

Country: U.S.

Name: Michael Bloomberg - 8

This year's net worth: $40 billion

Source: Bloomberg LP

Country: U.S.

Name: Michael Bloomberg - 8

This year's net worth: $40 billion

Source: Bloomberg LP

Country: U.S.

Name: Larry Ellison - 7

This year's net worth: $43.6 billion

Source: Oracle

Country: U.S.

Name: Larry Ellison - 7

This year's net worth: $43.6 billion

Source: Oracle

Country: U.S.

Name: Mark Zuckerberg - 6

This year's net worth: $44.6 billion

Source: Facebook

Country: U.S.

Name: Mark Zuckerberg - 6

This year's net worth: $44.6 billion

Source: Facebook

Country: U.S.

Name: Jeff Bezos - 5

This year's net worth: $45.2 billion

Source: Amazon.com

Country: U.S.

Name: Jeff Bezos - 5

This year's net worth: $45.2 billion

Source: Amazon.com

Country: U.S.

Name: Carlos Slim - 4

This year's net worth: $50 billion

Source: Telecom

Country: Mexico

Name: Carlos Slim - 4

This year's net worth: $50 billion

Source: Telecom

Country: Mexico

Name: Warren Buffett - 3

This year's net worth: $60.8 billion

Source: Berkshire Hathaway

Country: U.S.

Name: Warren Buffett - 3

This year's net worth: $60.8 billion

Source: Berkshire Hathaway

Country: U.S.

Name: Amancio Ortega - 2

This year's net worth: $67

Source: Retail

Country: Spain

Name: Amancio Ortega - 2

This year's net worth: $67

Source: Retail

Country: Spain

Name: Bill Gates - 1

This year's net worth: $75 billion

Source: Microsoft

Country: U.S.

Name: Bill Gates - 1

This year's net worth: $75 billion

Source: Microsoft

Country: U.S.

Map reveals where billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse

When the apocalypse arrives, life goes on. That's the possibility some are preparing for, at least.

A new article in Forbes suggests the USbillionairesare making significant land grabs in America's heartland, where the climate is mild and the locations are conducive to survivalism and living on the land. The Midwest ishome to several fortified shelters and vacation homes where the super-richcould happily live out their post-doomsday (or retirement) days.

Reid Hoffman, the cofounder of LinkedIn and a notable investor,told The New Yorker earlier this year he estimated more than 50% of Silicon Valley billionaires had bought some level of "apocalypse insurance," like a bunker.

Fortified shelters, built to withstand catastrophic events from viral epidemic to nuclear war, seem to be experiencing a wave of interest in general as hints of a nuclear conflict ramp up.

Real estate developersare capitalizing on the moment with luxuryunderground doomsday shelters that cost as much as$3 million. These post-apocalyptic homes, often built onretired military bases or in missile silos, includeluxury amenities and safety featureslike nuclear blast doors, armored trucks, and massive storesof food and water.

The map below reveals where American billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse.

Skye Gould/Business Insider

Join the conversation about this story

NOW WATCH: These doomsday shelters for the 1% make up the largest private bunker community on earth

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SEE ALSO:This 15-story underground doomsday shelter for the super-rich has luxury homes, guns, and armored trucks

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Billionaires are stockpiling land that could be used in the apocalypse here’s where they’re going – The Advocate

Posted: at 9:03 pm

Melia Robinson, provided by

Kim Kyung Hoon/Reuters

A rising number of Americanbillionaires are channeling their inner Bear Grylls, and some are doing it in preparation for an apocalyptic event be it viral epidemic, nuclear war, or cataclysmic pole shift.

Reid Hoffman, the cofounder of LinkedIn and a notable investor, told The New Yorker earlier this year he estimates more than 50% of Silicon Valley billionaires have bought some level of "apocalypse insurance," like an underground bunker.

A new article in Forbes suggests the super-rich are making serious land grabs in America's heartland, where the climate is mild and the locations are conducive to survivalism, farming, and living on the land. States like Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Texas, and Wyoming are home to a number of fortified shelters and vacation homes where wealthy billionaires could happily live out theirpost-doomsday (or retirement) days.

According to Forbes contributor Jim Dobson, lots of billionaires have private planes "ready to depart at a moment's notice." They also own motorcycles, weaponry, and generators.

None of the billionaires named by Forbes have said publicly that their vast amounts of land will be used for apocalypse preparations though they certainly would make good hide-outs.

John Malone, who made his fortune in cable and communications, is the nation's biggest individual landowner. Malone owns 2.2 million acres across six states including huge swaths of Maine and New Hampshire. The cable king told Forbes in 2011 that he made the land grabs as an investment. He said he loves to fish and occasionally bird-hunt on his properties.

Media mogul Ted Turner, the second biggest individual landowner in the US, owns 2 million acres across Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, South Dakota.

Philip Anschulze, a railroad and oil magnate, locked down 434,000 acres in Wyoming. Amazon's Jeff Bezos has 400,000 acres in Texas. And Stan Kroenke, owner of a massive sports and entertainment holding company, bought 225,000 acres in Montana.

One of the more surprising real estate tycoons is David Hall, a Mormon engineer, who has been snapping up farmland in Vermont. He wants to build sustainable, high-density communities based on the writings of religious figure Joseph Smith.

In the event of the end of the world, the world's financial leaders may be the most prepared.

Join the conversation about this story

NOW WATCH: Look inside the Arctic 'doomsday' seed vault built to protect millions of crops from any disaster

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Next "Far Cry" video game is set in Montana – KRTV News in Great Falls, Montana – KRTV Great Falls News

Posted: June 11, 2017 at 5:01 pm

GREAT FALLS -

The latest release of the popular "Far Cry" video game series will feature a Montana setting, and promoted with video shot near Poplar.

A press release from the Montana Department of Commerce says that Far Cry 5 takes place in fictional Hope County, Montana. Although usually set in exotic, foreign locations such as the Himalayas and a fictional African country, Far Cry 5 is the first entry set in America. Its scheduled to be released in February 2018.Since 2004, sales of Far Cry games have reached more than 42 million.

The press release states: Players will have a large game world to explore while fighting off a hostile occupation of the county. In between the action, players will get a taste of Montanas outdoor recreation with hunting and fishing challenges. We know from the film industry that movies can be some of the best tools available for promoting a destination, but the interactive nature of video games represents an exciting opportunity weve never quite had before, said Montana Film Commissioner Allison Whitmer. Audiences around the globe not only will see Montana, theyll experience it virtually.

The official Far Cry 5 website provides this overview: Welcome to Hope County, Montana, land of the free and the brave, but also home to a fanatical doomsday cult known as The Project at Edens Gate that is threatening the community's freedom. Stand up to the cults leader, Joseph Seed and the Heralds, and spark the fires of resistance that will liberate the besieged community. In this expansive world, your limits and creativity will be tested against the biggest and most ruthless baddest enemy Far Cry has ever seen. Itll be wild and itll get weird, but as long as you keep your wits about you, the residents of Hope County can rest assured knowing youre their beacon of hope.

A spokesperson for Ubisoft said Montana was a natural fit for the series because of its diverse landscape and the do-it-yourself attitude of its people. The developers visited several times to shoot thousands of photos and interview residents.

A location scout identified a church near Poplar where promotional video for the game was shot. The crew employed three people from Montana. Between labor and other expenditures related to the production, the shoot is estimated to have generated $20,000 for the Poplar economy.

While the Montana Department of Commerce is focused on the promotion of Montana, many gaming sites and reviews are focused on the actual premise and game-play.

An article at Kotaku notes:Its about blasting through a section of modern Montana controlled by a Bible-thumping madman who runs a heavily-armed militia. Youre up against The Father, Joseph Seed, who along with his family has spent the last dozen years sinking deep roots into the fictional Hope County while establishing a cult called The Project at Edens Gate.

Sam Machkovech, writing for ArsTechnica, said: "The 13-year-old Far Cry gaming series returns once more in February 2018, and, at least conceptually, this might be its most intense entry yet. While Far Cry games traditionally drop players into exotic, international locales with only a gun and a prayer, this year's entry, Far Cry 5, lands in the U-S-of-A. Specifically, the open, rural wilds of Montana. Your mission: invade a militarized cult's massive compound and take down its gun-toting, Jesus-invoking leader."

From Wired:When it arrives next February,Far Cry 5will unfold in a small town in Montana, where a religious cult tinged with American survivalism has emerged. (Think the Bundys, though no shortage of legalese will doubtless back away from that comparison.) Youll play a young police officer, a man or a woman, depending on your decision, and youll be tasked with (ugh) taking this slice of America back.

The Montana setting and choice of villains in the game has even sparked an online petition, which has garnered nearly 2,000 signatures.

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