The Camp Fire Tragedy

Written by: Colin Offenbacker

It’s midway through November and as Thanksgiving approaches, the weather here in the great Pacific Northwest has been pretty fantastic given the time of year. In New York City the first winter storm system brought a blanket of snow, while California on the other hand has suffered a horrific tragedy at the hands of wildfire.

Approximately 10 miles east of Chico California sat the town of Paradise. In local folklore it’s a town named after an old saloon called “pair-o’-dice”, but for its 26,000 plus residence, I’m sure they just knew it as home. Last Thursday a wildfire broke out and thanks to the fabled and now dreaded “Santa Ana Winds” within no time at all the town of Paradise found itself ablaze in a hellish nightmare.

It’s being called the “Camp Fire”, and as of writing this it’s also being called California’s deadliest wildfire. It’s been one week since the blaze first started back on Thursday November 8th and the official CAL-FIRE site shows it as only 40% contained. To date we’re seeing the death toll at 63 civilian fatalities and 3 injuries but the list of people still unaccounted for is somewhere between 130-300 but these numbers continue to fluctuate wildly from day to day. Unfortunately all of these numbers will probably continue to rise as the days and weeks go on.

It’s being reported that some 90% of the town’s residences has been turned to ash. A total of 8,756 residences and 260 commercial buildings have been destroyed and another 15,500 buildings are still considered threatened according to CAL-FIRE. Living in a town with a population half of what Paradise’s is, I can’t even fathom the true physical manifestation of this disasters fallout, it seems totally unreal for someone like me who has never been witness to a disaster such as this.

Investigating the cause of most wildfires can be a difficult and time consuming process and as of now we have no idea what caused the fire to break out. There is however one thing we know for a fact about this fire, and that is simple. The people of Paradise need assistance. By simply punching in “camp fire relief” into google, a huge number of charities including the Red Cross and the Salvation Army can be found. Money, clothing, hygiene essentials, they pretty much need everything and anything to help these people.

The large craft brewery Sierra Nevada, which is actually based right next to Paradise in Chico California has started a relief fund. The best resource I’ve found to help is through a link below, if want to get involved and help out the relief effort your about 2-3 clicks away. It’s run through Golden Valley bank and the link will bring you right to a list of relief funds you can support directly. As pictures and videos of the ashy ruins of Paradise continue to flood across the internet and television the need for any kind of relief becomes more and more visually apparent.

Golden Valley Bank Community Foundation:

https://www.goldenvalley.bank/Community-Foundation.aspx

To follow up to date information check out the CAL-FIRE website:

http://www.fire.ca.gov/current_incidents/incidentdetails/Index/2277

Episode 39 of Salt of The Streets!

Don is out sick on this episode 39 of Salt of The Streets and to help Offie fill in he is joined by the ginger ninja herself, Morgan. The two go over the recent ousting of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General (0:48:00), the outcomes of the midterm elections both local and nationwide (0:07:00) and a quick trip into the SPORTS arena to honor their fallen friend.

This podcast and all of our others can be found on our SoundCloud or ANY other place you can get a podcast. All of our videos can be found on our YouTube page including the pre-shows and full episode videos. Salt of The Streets T-shirts are now available and can be inquired about through this website or any of our social media. Give us a rate and review wherever you listen to the pod, send us a screen shot and you will get $5 OFF YOUR FIRST SHIRT.

Don and Offie are participating in Movember to support men’s health and suicide prevention. It’s an incredible cause that can impact anyone and does impact tons of people. Don is donating money from all of his paychecks during the month of November and if anyone else wants to donate the link is HERE and can be found on our Facebook.

“12 Rules For Life” Series, Part 7

I am halfway ashamed to admit that this is the last chapter I will be able to write about from memory. For a whole lot of not good enough reasons I put down this book and started this blog post series partially as a way to force myself to finish it. Even with the zero people I am convinced read my blog posts I still feel some form of responsibility to these posts.

Odd as it is, I think this chapter is the reason as to why I keep this up. Rule number 7 in 12 rules for life is ” pursue what is meaningful (not what is expedient)”. I feel this can be broken down to be a little easier to understand by saying ” the easiest option isn’t always what’s best”. Something I am reminding myself of very frequently, as of late.

The longer Colin and I continue this journey, the stronger I feel that this is what I am supposed to be doing. But also, the longer we stick with this the more difficult it becomes. We spend more money, invest more time, try harder and do more things. All of this done with the idea that we will eventually be able to do this ALL the time. To do this AS our jobs. And the longer all of that continues, obviously the harder it gets. But on Saturdays, when I’m in the chair in the studio sitting next to Offie and providing information that people are asking for and exposing political ties I feel people need to see, I know this is what I should be doing.

I spend 45 hours, roughly, a week doing the auditory research for this show. On top of that I read all of the articles that I do, put together all of my notes for the show, semi-manage our social media, and then show up on Saturday to do the show, all on top of the personal and family things I need to get done, (did I mention I have baby on the way?). When I don’t want to hear anymore about political dissidents being killed or entire groups of people being dismissed by others, don’t want to talk for 3 hours or do anything besides sit in my MeUndies, smoke weed and play Madden, I have to take a step back and remember that the easy path is not always the best.

In all of the interviews I have heard with athletes and millionaires, business men and musicians, none of them ever said it was easy. A lot of them will give credit to luck or to God or the other people around them that helped them get there because no one does it alone, but none of them ever say it was easy. Even regular people who own a small business or even just become manager somewhere that they love, the journey is almost never easy.

Everyone is provided with opportunities on their path to quit or to undercut someone or just in general take the easy way out, but that will always come back to bite you. Even if everything works out for you, on the whole, because you have taken those easy breaks and gained from them, at the end of the day you did not allow yourself to take hold of the true opportunity to learn a work ethic strong enough to get you to your goals. If something DOES happen that places you in a spot of adversity and your easy breaks no longer benefit you, you will not have the will to stick with something long enough and to work through the muck and the grime to get to the real prize.

This rule in the end I think is one that most people know but, like me, could stand to be reminded of everyone once in a while. It can be hard for a lot of people, especially in this new generation, to be able to see that work is not the point of life. While the work ethic is one of the main benefits from struggling through adversity it is not the true goal. There is a balance between work and play that can be hard to strike and can be slightly different for everyone, but I have no issue with saying that no matter what your journey, no matter what your path, on your way to the goal pursue what is meaningful, not what is expedient.

Episode 38 / Movember Announcement

Episode 38 takes Don and Offie down the path of another listener request topic and cover the roots and possible effects of the current migrant caravan being covered in the media, the Trump and administrations announcement of a new definition of gender and the backlash around it, and in the grab bag we cover the Squirrel Hill shooting, a coon man named Festus, Shaun White as Simple Jack, and as always a jam packed SPORTS!!

This episode and ALL of our pods can be found on our SoundCloud and anywhere else you can get a podcast. The pre-show for this episode can be found on our FaceBook and a finished version on our YouTube along with the rest of our videos and full episode video for Episode 38 will be available tomorrow afternoon.

Don and Offie and both participating in Movember which is a charity that focuses on mens health and was detailed in this weeks episode. To donate it our name you can follow THIS link or search either of our names on the website. Help us do what we can to affect mens health

Tomorrow is the last day to vote and we cannot ask anyone enough times to vote. The way you vote on your local initiatives DIRECTLY affects the things that happen around you including how much your taxes are and where the money goes. In Episode 37 we went over the initiatives on our local ballot and can’t recommend enough that everyone does the same.

T-shirts are also available. Inquiries can be made through ANY of our social media, you WILL hear back from us. Leave us a rate and a review and send us a screen shot and you get $5 off your first shirt.

The Squirrel Hill Shooting

Written by: Colin Offenbacker

During last weeks grab bag session on the podcast we brought up the horrible shooting that took place at the Squirrel Hill synagogue but didn’t dive into it, it had taken place the morning of the cast and it was just too early to accurately report much of anything except for the fact that it did happen. The traditional week long period of mourning known to the English-speaking Jewish community as “sitting shiva” hasn’t yet completed but many details have come forth as investigations are running there course.

The attack came on the morning of Saturday the 27th of October 2018. During a morning Jewish service a 46-year-old man who worked as a long-haul trucker burst into the Squirrel Hill synagogue, which is outside of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, and began shooting at the synagogue’s members. The incident lasted approximately 20 minutes leaving 11 people dead and left six people injured, including four police officers. After investigating it was reported that the crime seems to be a blatant anti-Semitic hate crime. The suspect eventually surrendered to authorities and is now in custody. On Thursday he, in a brief arraignment in federal court, plead not guilty to the 44-count indictment handed down by federal prosecutors. This past week has seen many funerals take place, services of remembrance and even a condolence visit by the President of the United States.

Before we part ways this week I wanted to make a point. Though the previous two paragraphs were lacking in color and emotion I would like to point out that never did I once reveal the suspects name or post a picture of his face. If you’ve listened to Don and I talk about mass shooters before, you know that we will not reveal names or post pictures of these pieces of human debris. We feel strongly that any notoriety these people seek must not be achieved. There names and faces should be lost to history forever, never to be remembered. We should remember what happened, when it happened, where it happened and why it happened. We should feel pain and loss for those whose lives were stolen away from them, there community, there family and friends. Choosing to broadcast the perpetrators name and face gives them a chance to gain some sort of sick notoriety and could allow them and there crimes to gain infamy. Though it’s just a simple example, I, with no journalistic background, can present the situation without revealing a name or a face, I feel like it’s just the moral thing to do.

Maybe I’m wrong here, but if I can do it I see absolutely no reason the “real” media outlets, including some of the most respected in the world, can’t do the same thing. We’ve seen a great number of “alternative” media outlets including, a kind of late to the party, Ben Shapiro take this stance, refusing to show faces or reveal names. With any luck this trend will catch onto bigger and bigger news outlets. There are about a million and one reason I could point to as to why the more main-stream media outlets don’t do this, but that is a completely different blog post all together. For now, we’ll leave it at that, and we’ll talk to you again soon.

Episode 37 is dropping!

This week on episode 37 Don and Offie cover President Trumps decision and announcement that the U.S. will withdraw from the INF Treaty with Russia, the initiatives up for vote on Washington States mid-terms this year, and in the grab bag we discuss the recent pipe bombs that were mailed to prominent left-leaning public figures, hunting adrenaline in even the most experienced hunters, how many games to start a winning streak, and is Demon House legit? and as always, a quick SPORTS!!

 

This podcast and ALL of our other episodes are available on our SoundCloud and ANYWHERE else you can get a podcast, the pre-show video for this episode is on our Facebook and YouTube with all the rest of our videos and the full episode show will be up tomorrow. Like us on Facebook and leave us a review on your podcast app. T-shirts are available, send us a screen shot and you will get $5 off of your first T-Shirt. Inquiries can be made through any of our social media. You WILL hear back from us.

“12 Rules For Life” Series, Part 6

Halfway through the book and this chapter is short and sweet. Rule number 6 is to “set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world”. I think the best thing about this rule is that it can be taken in a lot of different ways and to me, like a good movie I get something a little different each time I read it. However, I think the most prevalent meaning I take from it is to look inward, and do what is best for myself.

When Offie and I went to see Dr. Peterson he spoke largely about seeing the world through a prism of your own experiences and that it was so deeply ingrained in you that it would affect the options that display themselves to you when thinking or problem solving. This same prism through which I and everyone else sees the world, sets a value system that are your core beliefs and wants, the things that are most important to you. That in itself, is going to set forth what you strive for in your life. Whether you marry early or wait, have kids early or wait, work as much as you possibly can in your youth or use it to travel and experience the world.

Once you are able to look inward and identify that value system in a way that you can comprehend and make tangible in your life, you can set forward solid steps on how to strive for and achieve the goals you’ve set base on said value system. You can also better identify things you are doing in your life that are actively fighting against your effort to reach your goals. Maybe you didn’t know before you had clearly laid out your values for yourself but now that you know what you’re going for you can see what you are doing wrong and stop doing it. Set yourself in order.

I also think it can be taken at a little more face value; don’t be hypocritical. Don’t be judgmental. If you are leading a life in which you make mistakes, which everyone does, then you have no room to judge anyone for anything they do in their life. I am will be the first person to admit that I make comments all the time about any manner of things I see people do in public simply for my own entertainment and the entertainment of my wife, but I can also honestly say that none of the silly judgments I make in the name of comedy would actually bare any relevance on my opinion were I to meet any of these people.

I have made more mistakes in my 23 years than I would ever like to admit. There are still things to this day that I have done in my past, that upon recollection often make me feel sick. I have identified these mistakes and carry them with me consciously. There are few inexcusable acts that I feel comfortable judging an individual on, none of which I have ever or would ever commit. I do not like the idea of just keeping your head down and nose to the grind stone because I think it’s important to understand what’s happening around you and be able to interact well with the people around you, but the actions of other people often bare no relevance or have really any affect on what you are doing or your pursuit of your value system based goals.

However the chapter is perceived by you, I think this is one rule that everyone can find something valuable in. There are a lot of people in internet media that like to say that Dr. Petersons writings are full of dog whistles for all right male youth, but I don’t know a single person who couldn’t be leading their life more effectively or a little less focused on the person next to them. I think most people have seen the meme of one of the last times Michael Phelps won a gold medal. Near the very end of the race, Phelps is looking forward focused on himself and finishing as fast as he can. His competitor is watching Phelps. Worry about what you are doing before you worry about the person next to you. Set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.

 

-Donavan Phillips