Friday, October 14, 2011

The Ground: a new song by John Ludi

My latest...pretty happy with it.  One of these days I'll make a real video for it:

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Off-Grid John: October Update, the Text Version.


It's been a while since I last posted anything on here, so I thought I'd post a brief bit to explain why. 

It's not because of a lack of anything to post...I've actually been pretty busy: a brief dalliance with working with other musicians again (bad idea, need to keep flying solo musically), lots of winter prep projects (good idea, don't want to die just is too interesting right now), making many new friends in the area and doing a certain amount of volunteer work (another good idea), and a personal life that no longer is quite so tundra-like (seems like a good idea so far).

The issues are largely technical: my Droid phone is a pain to work on and the videos that I have been making take FOREVER to upload from the WiFi hotspots available.  I recently posted several videos showing my Winterizing attempts in the yurt on Facebook.  They were fairly amusing and had their moments, but when I edited them together they ended up being around twenty minutes long and would have taken 356 minutes to upload to YouTube.  So it looks like I will have to err on the side of brevity for my future videos, can most of the jocularity and humorous excess, and get to the down and dirty technical facts of what I'm order to keep providing the various tips and tricks I am coming up with to make my time in the woods a survivable one.

So I have a LOT more projects I have been engaged in that I want to share, but I'm going to have to learn to talk faster and be less personal in the vids and leave such things to this blog and such.  I was hoping that I could do that in video form as I really like to use the whole array of non-verbal communication to get my various points across in a palatable and friendly way, but we must accept the constraints of our environment after all...which is what being in an off-grid situation MEANS: working within your limits and being creative with what you have.

Monday, August 15, 2011

More Off-Grid John Vids

These are on my way of treating water at my location and my selection of a yurt as a dwelling.   The former named is probably the most universally useful and I highly recommend watching it despite the fact that the lighting makes me look kind of creepy.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Off-Grid John: The Introduction Video.

This is the introductory video to the series I am slowly but surely putting together.  It gives a general overview of what I am attempting to do and why I'm attempting to do it.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Some preliminary Off-Grid John videos.

As some of you know, I have decided to move to the off-grid location very shortly.  This is both for personal, artistic, ethical and situational reasons (meaning concerns about the economy, etc).  I plan on documenting a lot of my what I do there on this blog and on videos that will end up on my YouTube channel.  I am doing this because I am a vain little glory pig and a publicity whore...


What I meant to say was that I am going to document my trials and tribulations and joys so those of you who are interested in the Voluntary Simplicity lifestyle can see how a guy who has spent most of his life in the concrete jungle copes with living in the woods in a 200sqft yurt with no plumbing, electrical hookup, or gas or electric heat.  I think this is a worthwhile project as I suspect that this is a lifestyle that may become one that people may be living in the near future when they have no choice in the matter...the choice may be made for them by the more we can learn NOW, the better off we'll be.

I have already shot a few videos that I am putting up here.  Two are just of a couple comical encounters with birds and one is a video about foraging.  I have a couple more of a tree-felling and a potato storage experiment that I have yet to edit, and then I will be shooting all kinds of new videos!

MUCH more to come...and MUCH more of a pragmatic and hopefully useful nature.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

More tunes on the John Ludi YouTube Channel

Before I end up in the woods full time, I wanted to put as many of my tunes up on YouTube as possible.  I'm starting with Hell's Laughter and Heaven's Ache, but I should eventually have the 7 current albums and one or two that I have had sitting around in "storage".

Saturday, June 4, 2011

A brief update.

Just to let people know that I am going through some very significant changes in my life and things may be rather sporadic in the near term, but that I will be working on more music and other projects in the near future. 

One of those projects may be an entirely new blog devoted to the aforementioned changes and how I deal with them, as I think that such a project would be greatly useful to other people who will increasingly feel the need to make such changes in their own lives. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

John Ludi at Work: One Way Train, Part 2.

The song about 1/2 of the way through it's development, otherwise me just being long-winded and acting's what I do.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Cheap Solar Cooker

Just what it says...a cheap solar cooker you can make for a few bucks. 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Pluto Radio

It suddenly occured to me that I have not represented Pluto Radio on this here blog here it is:

This is an online radio station started by an old friend of mine that is in the classic free form radio style that used to make radio worth listening to back in the 60's through 80's...and what's more, they also are one of the few online radio stations that plays my own music on a pretty regular basis AND the ONLY station where you will here me functioning as a DJ.  The majority of the music you here on there is from independent bands and artists, many of whom display a serious degree of talent.

So tune in and give it a never know what you'll hear on's pretty much all over the map, as life should be.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Weekly News Update-05/11/2011

A busy week it's been and is going to be.  So here's some stuff I've been following (I have not been keeping tabs of where I got these, so sorry if I've slighted anyone):






INTERESTING DISCOURSE:’re-taking-the-whole-planet-with-us-by-chris-hedges/


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Weekly News Updates-05-03-2011

I'm not going to go on a rant about the whole Bin Laden bit...mainly because I really don't have a side to argue from.  I have been both amused and disappointed by two distinct reactions to the news of the alleged raid:

1-This was a complete sham and a massive PR stunt and if you believe it was for real you are a complete and utter rube and you probably also believe in the tooth fairy...and you suck!

2-This was the pure and unvarnished truth and if you don't believe it you are a crazy conspiracy nut and you believe Elvis crashed at Roswell...and you suck!

Very sad.  Is there no room for REASONED skepticism anymore?  The government has pulled the wool over our eyes so often that I'm surprised we have not run out of sheep...but they don't lie about EVERYTHING.  Just MOSTLY everything.

Like everything else filtered through the funhouse-mirror world of the Internet, before the news was a millisecond old the opinion-factory of the virtual world started spinning like a billion spiders on meth, with only ONE thing in common between the lot of them: practically EVERY purveyor of an angle on this event was ABSOLUTELY SURE they were right and that anyone who didn't buy their worldview 100% was wrong.  Wrong and a gullible sheep ripe for a shearing by The Elites, or wrong and an unpatriotic monster who should be rounded up and gassed to make the planet safe for Democracy.  The insensitivity and vitriol was breathtaking. 

And there is one thing that they also have in common: none of them KNOW shit about the true FACTS of the subject.  I know I don't.  I was not there.  If indeed there WAS a "there".  I personally have my doubts...serious doubts...but that's ALL they are...I lack facts...and for some strange reason I seem to be able to live with this.

But since I also doubt the foundational existence of physical reality as the ultimate base of existence overall, doubt is part and parcel of my every worldly observation...and increasingly I find myself very much alone in that regard.  At a time when I had wished for some sort of an expansion of a multi-layered approach to thinking and perception in the human species, some sort of awakening consciousness that can function in a non-linear mode, even the smart people are turning into narrow-minded little hermit crabs scrabbling around in the flux of the multiverse looking for just the right confining little shell to wedge themselves into.

And I find myself increasingly of the opinion that I do not belong on this planet.'s a start on this week's accumulation...check back for updates throughout the week:


(Where PMs go tells you more about the fate of the dollar then most other indicators...ALL currencies are now fiat currencies.  When you see PMs rise the way they have, despite various efforts to suppress them, you know the game is afoot.)


(h/t to Sue)


(h/t to Spin)




Monday, May 2, 2011

A brief note on moral ambiguity.

I posted this on one of my favorite forums, but I thought I'd put it up here too.  I was responding to a spirited back-and-forth regarding the Bin Laden issue.  Some people believe what we were presented with last night and some emphatically don't.  As for myself, the very manner and timing of the presentation itself aroused my did the news this morning that the body was already disposed of...but do I know one way or the other?  Nope.  

I do feel that the reasons why this event could be used as a pretext for any number of things from any number of sectors are sadly obvious:

"The war machine is one of the lynchpins of our current economy (disgustingly enough)...and just like anything else in our growth-driven economic model, there have to be new sources of expansion to keep that machine going. The more enemies we make, the more we can spend on the arms industry, the more we bolster the overall economy and keep utter collapse at bay.

It's probably one of the most horrific catch-22s we have ever created. It's too bad we didn't devote that huge slice of our economic pie to alternative energy, building schools, and growing organic produce...but here we are. The amount of people employed directly and indirectly in that industry is staggeringly huge and that pin can't be pulled without imploding the whole system.

Sad and sick, isn't it? That which keeps us alive does so by killing people.

We are exactly where Eisenhower warned us we would be headed. 

Imagine being infected by a parasite that eventually grows large enough to replace several of the vital organs you require to live. Imagine also that the ultimate fate you await is that that parasite will eventually become so large that it's intake of nutrients will starve you as the host.

What do you do?

And it's the same thing with the TBTF banks: sure they are amoral bastards, a lot of them, but at the same time their sudden absence would tank our economy. And because they have a need to constantly expand, we let them play the games that will ultimately kill our economy anyway.

Bombs and banks: can't live WITH 'em...can't live without 'em.

We are in a global catch-22 and the only way out is down.

Happy birthday.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Weekly News Updates-04/25/2011

When I have time, I will be trying to put up the various news items and blog posts by others that I want to pass on, on a weekly basis (hopefully on Mondays).  Currently my main concern is still the Japanese situation, and the MSM has done with THAT issue what they usually do with major news events: BIG HEADLINES...then slow the news down to a trickle and dazzle us with trivia like royal weddings and Charlie Sheen...but it is still in play and could get MUCH uglier. 

But other things at play in the world are the skyrocketing commodity prices, a looming global food shortage, the death of the dollar as a reserve currency (read: hyperinflation STRONG possibility), and a plethora of other issues, each of which would be greatly troubling, but combined are a part of the Death by a Thousand Cuts that will pretty much be the end of our civilization.  One can also add to the level of insanity by the response of our leadership to the nuclear crisis: let's build more nuke plants!  (Which seems to be the same response they have to the BP calamity: it didn't work the last time...let's do more of it!)  Are they evil, stupid, barking mad or a quality blend of all three of those flavors?  Well, it probably doesn't matter if the end result is all the same...

On the MUCH brighter side, I got together with 3 of my old bandmates from the group Soft War for a trip down memory lane that was such a positive experience that we may be working together again in the near future.  I've been pretty much a solo recording artist (with the occasional acoustic show) for the past 15 or so years, so playing in a full band contest was incredibly gratifying...especially when playing with people I both like and admire AND who have such a high degree of musical aptitude that I never have to worry about much of anything.'s a bunch of stuff to make you happy (which I will be updating over the course of this week).


(King World News has GREAT audio interviews that you can download as MP3s...I recommend that you do so as I think Eric King and his guests probably have the best bead on things of any of the Alternative Economics shows out there),_Dollar_to_Plummet.html

(I'm not a huge PM investor...I have SOME, but not piles of the stuff...I prefer preps, ammo, and heirloom seeds...but I have been gobsmacked by how fast and how far silver has broken net worth keeps climbing while I sit back and twiddle my thumbs.  Considering that the rise in PMs is symptomatic of a collapse of the global economic system, I'm not too thrilled about it though.)

(Dodd/Frank was a lameass bill, but it's amusing how even THAT slap on the wrist is getting pushback.)


Politics as Usual: 

(H/T to Joan and Satori)


(Hat tip to Tim/Jon/Sue on FB.)

(Hat tip to Syn.)

Insightful Commentary:

Primitive ritualistic behavior observed in the activities of homicidal mutant chimpanzee species (the Royal Wedding):

(Hat tip to Scott)

MUCH more to come...looks like a heavy news week (which always seems to happen when I travel, even just overnight.)

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Big List of Japanese Nuclear News Update Sources

Or BLJNNUS for short.  Which is only an actual word on my home planet.  It is our word for "three-eye flying snail"...which is not a species native to Earth, but after a few decades of radiation, it might be.

I am going to be updating this list as I find new sources...and if YOU know of any sources, please recommend them to me in a comment here or on Facebook or somewhere or other.

(UPDATED LIST AS OF 4-14-2011)

I should note that finding UNBIASED sources of raw spin-free news about ANYTHING is impossible these days...everyone is in bed with SOMEONE, it try to use your own good judgement (if you have any...and if you do, please send some to me as I ran out a few years ago).

At my primary forum home (for all things doom-related) we have been toiling away posting updates on the situation.  I am posting a link to the beginning of the thread: 

THIS thing here is not a news source, but a nifty little tool for checking out wind patterns/radioactivity in air currents.

REAL-TIME RADIATION MAPS/GRAPHS/FEEDS.  Not sure of the accuracy of all of them, use your best judgement (trust no one):

Fun little radiation dose chart that you can have tattooed on your chest:

THIS one is an interesting little tool (but then people have said the same thing about me):

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Urbane Homestudding TM

is MINE bitches!!!

Do you hear me?!?

Also, Urban Homewreaking, Ermine Homeschooling, and Unctious everyone out there better keep their f**king hands off of these or you will hear from my lawyers, you scum-sucking bastards!!!


Thursday, February 17, 2011

John Ludi at Work: One Way Train, Part 1.

This is the first in a series of 3 videos that will show how the artistic process works in my particular little brain. It starts by having a basic structure to work around and build upon, which can be nothing more that a simple drum part or bass/guitar/keyboard line...but in this case is one of my older tunes that I like to play around with as it always presents a nice canvas to splatter odd ideas over.

Oh yes...this song has nothing to do with's actually about hypocrisy, world-weariness, and suicidal ideation...but "one way train" flowed better than "one way rickshaw" or "one way dirigible"...even though the whole "train" motif is disgustingly overused. There should be a law.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

One of the saddest things I've read recently.

Not much of a comment I can, or really should, make about this...except to say that this is only the beginning, and that this poor sad, sick man at the end of his rope is someone we are going to get to know very well, very fact, some of us may become him.

I wish peace upon Mark...and I wish the blackest of hells upon the suited monsters who helped make his life what it was...and I hope they too feel pain before they too fall.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Clueless in Davos.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet one of the most powerful people on the planet:

From the reports that I have read out of Davos and from watching interviews like these, it is becoming ever clearer to me that the world of the rich and powerful is becoming increasingly detached from the world the rest of us live in.  The almost-boundless optimism of this man leaves me stunned.

Either Jamie is a great actor, or he is an incredibly two-dimensional thinker and completely isolated from anything resembling a larger view of reality outside of the world of international banking and high finance.

I think it's the latter, and I think people like this are in for a big surprise.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What the hell did I just make? Volume 1, Number 1.

When I am not cowering in my bunker waiting for the entire planet to explode (or recording songs about waiting for the entire world to explode) , I actually have a few hobbies, one of the being cooking.

I am not one for following recipes, for the most part.  There are times when I may crack open a cookbook for something specific, but by and large my cooking is almost pure improvisation.  Usually what it amounts to is looking in the fridge and in the pantry and saying "hmmm...6 totally unrelated items that are past their expiration date...what would they all taste like together?"

Now this may SOUND kind of appalling, but for the most part what comes out of this process tends to taste OK, and has not killed any of the brave souls who have ever sampled my creations.

I have decided to add some of my more successful creations to this here blog...just for the hell of it.  There may be other vegetarian cooks who could play around with some of these ideas and not die in an ER somewhere.

Also, it may be fun for people who read these recipes (especially the more exotic ones) to have a go at telling me that what I came up with purely at random actually closely resembles a real dish made by real chefs.

Stranger things HAVE happened.

So this is my first documentation of something I have been doing since I was 8 years old (when my drunk single parent decided I was old enough to feed myself).

This is vaguely like an Indian dish (as I love Indian food with a passion)...but WHAT Indian dish is beyond me:

Here's what it looks like:

And here are the ingredients:

1 1/2 cups water
2 Tablespoons oil
1/2 Tablespoon salt
1/2 Teaspoon turmeric
1/2 Teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 Teaspoon fenugreek powder
1 Teaspoon cumin powder
1 Teaspoon coriander powder
1/4 Teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup (homemade) paneer
1/2 cup milk
1 egg
1 1/2 cups chopped okra
1/2 cup lamb's quarters (it's like spinach)

I blended all the spices with the water and oil, boiled it for a couple minutes, turned it to medium and added the okra and lamb's quarters (I had boiled and frozen them prior, so I just need to thaw them in the liquid).

Once the veggies were thawed, I decided to add the milk and the paneer...and just for the hell of it I scrambled an egg and spread it throughout the mixture, like one would with egg drop soup.

This I let simmer covered for a few minutes and then let it sit until it was eating temperature.

The results?  Holy crap, it was tasty!  I wish I had made a lot more of it.  It's very nice served on top of a slice of naan (also homemade).

So what the hell did I just make?

Financial Meltdown Was 'Avoidable

File under: "oh, really?"

It may be somewhere in the report, but the article does not mention that, in addition to complacency and ineptitude, this was also driven by brazen, insane, foam-at-the-mouth, drool-on-your-pants well as by corruption, cronyism, and a system that offers an open revolving door between TBTF banks, the Fed, the government, and the agencies that are supposed to regulate such behaviors.

No...kinda doubt that will make the report...they probably just want to say that the players made a widdle boo-boo and bwoke your widdle economy and they feel reeeeealy bad about it and they promise not to do it again.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Keep an eye on the Middle East.

The combined activities in Tunisia and Lebanon are both things that should concern anyone who drives a car and eats food.

Those of you who don't do either should just ignore this:

This could escalate rapidly.  You really don't want it to.

(It's never too late to buy preps...until it is.)

Edited to add:

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Detroit you don't see.

A friend of mine turned me on to this little photo essay (thanks Kathi).  Lots of people (myself included) denigrate Detroit for being an example of how NOT to run a city, and for having allowed a once thriving and vital place to become a cold, dead ghetto...all of which IS true and I'd never live there again, but there are OTHER aspects to the city that you don't see.  These aspects are like the the little rodents scurrying amongst the feet of the dinosaurs: flowers amongst the ruins.

One of the things I miss about Detroit is the intense creativity and individualistic inventiveness of that 1% of the population there that is still capable of that thing we used to call "independent thinking".  We don't seem to have a whole lot of that here in Chicago: it's a very conformist city...a conformity born of a dichotomy of unthinking comfort and convenience on the one hand, and mind-crushing anonymous poverty on the other.

My prediction about the two cities is this:  unless there ARE massive earth changes that alter the planet in ways that cannot be predicted, 50 years from now Detroit will be a paradise for independent gardeners and farmers, whereas Chicago will largely be a ruin...and probably an irradiated one if things get as out of hand as I fear they will.

The people in Detroit who are trying to make a difference are the weeds growing through the cracks, and they face opposition from above in the shape of a dying auto industry that still wants to maintain an economic stranglehold despite their largely moribund nature (working hand in glove with corrupt politicians who would have made Nero and Caligula turn green with envy), and from below in the form of a criminalized underclass who have long abandoned any hope for the future...

but those weeds do keep growing, don't they?  Can't stop the weeds.

Friday, January 21, 2011

A Promise is a Promise...unless a government or a corporation makes it!

Well...didn't see THIS one coming from a mile away:

On the weird and crooked little path that has been my life's journey, one thing early on that stuck out on that path like a 3000lb day-glo purple tumbleweed was the idea that kept knocking about in my thick little skull that if I even lived long enough TO retire, I probably would not have much of a safety net waiting for me if I did.  Part of that comes from not having one when I was a kid, but the bigger part of it was seeing the overall untenability of  "the system".  Therefore, the draw for me when considering employment was always a "here and now" question, as opposed to a "can I work there for 40 years" question.

As it turns out that seems to have been a reasonably wise way of looking at it, though even I questioned my wisdom in taking that approach at times...but I really feel sorry for all the people who took the opposite approach: the safe way may have turned out to be the wrong way.

Who knew?

Looking at some of the pensions that public employees were promised I can certainly see at least a  few problematic areas, but as people took these positions partially BECAUSE of these long term promises, it really is a huge moral hazard that is going to play out here:  Yet another bait and switch for Joe and Josephine Lunchbucket, while the upper 1% gets to continue to roll around in piles of filthy lucre.

Pretty sad.

Thursday, January 20, 2011 I'm REALLY scared: "No Insiders Bought Any Stock In Prior Week"

When you see things like this, you have to wonder if this fake recovery is even going to last 2-3 months:

I've been casually watching this for several months now, but this is the most extreme I've seen so far.  The SMART MONEY is NOT buying into the system...they are LEAVING it!

Wakey wakey!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The latest GEAB is out.

I have not subscribed, but I always look forward to their summaries.

2011 is what I'm calling "The Year of The Canaries".  I think this year is where the erosion of the fundamental underpinnings of our global economy...and further, the very integrity of our biosphere, picks up a speed that will astonish even the most pessimistic.  On the surface, I think QE2 is working its questionable "magic", which will make the 95% of people who don't pay attention and haven't a clue think that we are in a "recovery".  In 2012 (or the latter part of 2011...which ever comes sooner...hahaha) the wheels will fall off in earnest.

This is assuming that we don't have any huge curves that come our way this year.  The system is so achingly brittle as it is, it would not take much for something to spread like a contagion, knocking everything over in it's path.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Just testing.

I will be redirecting the front page of the John Ludi site here at some point in the near future, but for now this is just a test.