Week20: Risky Rewilding


This week Penny and I decided to scrap our list so we could scrape our hide. We let the deer hide soak in a bucket of water for a couple days, changing the water daily. This supposedly makes the hair come out easier when you scrape it. People also put ash in with the water to make it work faster and keep down the bacteria growth. We didn’t put any ash in and it seemed to work just fine… except for the smell. It stank so bad I had to take all my clothes off, which felt nice in the heat anyway. Mmm… Hot sun, smelly hide, good times.

Oh my god scout, what on earth?!?

Oh. Okay. It looked like you… never mind.

Penny, why do I always do all the work. You don’t even try anymore!

Okay, now that feels a lot better!

I tell you… I can think of nothing hotter than a beautiful woman in a bikini scraping a stinky, rotting deer hide. She has woman enough to get shit done and I respect that, a lot. Speaking of beautiful women who get shit done, I snapped this photo of my old pal Lisa at the Washington Park archery range this week.

Aside from hide scraping and archery I worked a lot on my nixtamal project to no avail. Expect a loooong blog on the Nixtamalization process when I finally figure it out. Actually, I did finally produce a single tortilla, though it took way too much effort. I know a simpler way exists, I just don’t know where to find it! I felt like I had to share my first, so I tore it in half and ate it with Penny. Don’t worry, I shaved my face after I took this photo.

Let’s see, what else? Back yard campfires. Room and car cleaning. Gearing up to live in Willem’s backyard again for the first time. Bitching about radder-than-thou anarcho-primitivists. Watching my tip jar stay empty despite the Oregonian article… Okay, so a few people donated and I appreciate it very much! But I didn’t make a million dollars or anything. In time… in time…

Looking through me and Penny’s laundry list I see we did do a few things other than scrape the hide.

Fire Clay Pots
Find/Buy/Make a Metate y Mano My sister Katie brought me a stone mortar.
Bike/Camp on the Spring Water Corridor
Antler Wedge
Rawhide from shitty Drum I soaked it and unstrung it. Now I have rawhide.
Tan Hides at Shauns (Shaun left on a bike tour, so I stole his stuff)
Make Buckskin Short shorts (Penny started on hers)
Make Quickie Bow
Make Arrows
Watch/review Tom Elpel survival videos
Wild Foods Potluck in honor of Penny’s presence
Nasturtium flower salad!
Practice Drying Meat!
Gather dead Yucca stalks
Work on nixtamal project Worked on it all week, but still not quite getting it.
Have Shaun show us how to flint-knapp bottle bottoms
Harvest MORE sumac and dry it
Do something with the green apples in my backyard
Make Rose hip jam?
Find out what we can do with Mountain Ash (the berries look edible)

Frankly looking over this list I feel it has become rather dry and boring for me. Some things I just don’t see myself doing for a while, so I’ve decided to create a “back-burner” list.

The new list for week 20:

Bike/Camping trip up the Spring-Water Corridor
Schedule Tattoo appointment
Tan hides using eggs
Smoke Hides
Celebrate Penny’s B-Day with a wild foods potluck bash
Experiment with flint-knapping bottles without Shaun
Complete Penny’s Buckskin Short Shorts
Continue experimenting with Nixtamalization
Get/buy/make a food dehydrator
Gather and dry more fruit and berries for the winter
Move out of my house and into the street

The Back-Burner:

Urban Scout Buckskin Short Shorts
Make Rose Hip Jam
Fire Penny’s Clay Pots
Carve Bow
Carve Arrows
Learn to dry and store meats

You know what? After three days, I still can’t seem to get the stinky deer hide smell off of my hands. Don’t tell anyone!

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