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  • Defcon Goon Survival Gear

    As a goon, each year I end up putting myself through a lot of physical stress. The typical result of this is that I end up pretty hurt or worn out by the end of the convention. One year I went home on crutches, another year I had to skip several days of work because my feet wouldnt let me stand on them, and yet another I recieved a 2nd degree sunburn. So, after each year I try to do a personal 'after action report' about what worked and what I wish I had done. This year, I noticed that I returned home no worse for wear (baring some liver damage and lack of sleep). So I figured I'd share with you folks some of the things I did that made Defcon less exhausting.

    Feet: Ditch the combat boots, stick with hiking shoes or some solid sneakers. I got me a set of Super Feet inserts for my shoes. I dont think I can recommend these highly enough. Other than my feet being a tad sore Saturday night, I had no problems. I also ditched the tube socks in favor of medium thickness Merino wool hiking socks. All in all, my feet were happy all of con. Those that do a lot of hiking will tell you, as long as you keep your feet happy, the rest of you will be too.

    Torso: All the running around makes you sweat quite a bit. This really isnt a problem till you stop and cool off, then the sweat dries and can make you quite unhappy. I decided to try wearing a base layer of Under Armor this year. I went with an Under Armor boxer short and an Under Armor Tactical Heat Gear t-shirt. This stuff fucking rules. I was cool and happy all weekend.

    Gear: I have a problem staying hydrated. I simply forget to drink water when I am inside (back at the AP the 110 degree temps were a constant reminder). The result is that I get dehydrated and end up pretty worse for wear. So this year I decided to carry a small 400ml Nalgene bottle with me. I found that a Tactical Tailor Flash Bang / Smoke Grenade Pouch will hold this bottle perfectly. In addition to that I also carried a tube of NUUN Active Hydration tablets with me. These are nice because they are sugar free. One of them in a full nalgene bottle every few hours helped keep me alert.

    This was the second year I carried my Blackhawk Discreet Radio Harness. Basically it looks like a shoulder holster, but holds our big goon radios. Sadly these seem to be out of production, as I have found it to be the most comfortable way to carry a large radio, particularly if you only intend on staying on one channel.

    Not having to hang a microphone off me was nice as well. Several folks asked where we got our 'secret service' style ear pieces. We get them from a place called Earphone Connect. They make similar rigs for just about every HAM and commercial HT out there (for you Yaesu FT-50 owners, you'll find the radio on their site listed as a Vertex VX-50).

    Overall I think I found the right balance of gear. I didnt find myself wishing I had something else on me, nor did I feel that I was overloaded with gear.

    I return whatever i wish . Its called FREEDOWM OF RANDOMNESS IN A HECK . CLUSTERED DEFEATED CORn FORUM . Welcome to me

  • #2
    Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

    I too ditched the boots this year in favor of sneakers with insoles in them. Huge difference, especially since a desk job has spoiled my feet.

    For the last three years I have kept a camel pack on me with WATER (no booze or energy drink) in it and sipped on it constantly. Major lifesaver.
    Happiness is a belt-fed weapon.

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    • #3
      Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

      I'm not certain if this qualifies as 'goon gear' but there was a goon running around with awesome tiny defcon engraved flashlights.

      i *REALLY* wanted one, and I tried tracking down said goon during the ninja networks party and was unable to locate him.

      I tried again during closing ceremonies, since my nikon d200 let me get up on stage during the badge-waving. I talked to one guy who said it was 'CJ', but I again was unable to locate the guy.

      If anybody can connect me to him, I'd be greatly appreciative. I'd REALLY like one of those lights!

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      • #4
        Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

        Yes CJ had the torches. I'm very sure all the goon ones were sold out. I'm not sure if he has any of the non goon ones left or not. They are $120 for non goon l.e.d. torch. CJ could be found wearing the F.E.A. (Fun Enforcement Agency) shirt with out sleeves. I'll ask him if he has any left and what it would take to get one.

        Originally posted by Viss View Post
        I'm not certain if this qualifies as 'goon gear' but there was a goon running around with awesome tiny defcon engraved flashlights.

        i *REALLY* wanted one, and I tried tracking down said goon during the ninja networks party and was unable to locate him.

        I tried again during closing ceremonies, since my nikon d200 let me get up on stage during the badge-waving. I talked to one guy who said it was 'CJ', but I again was unable to locate the guy.

        If anybody can connect me to him, I'd be greatly appreciative. I'd REALLY like one of those lights!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

          Doing the dunk tank I was so lucky that Mark brought sunscreen for everyone, but a bandana helped my nice little balding spot from torching.
          If I help next year I am soooo getting a camel. Water was better then money at times.
          AcidicA, another orange shirted goon.
          myspace.com/acidicasound


          You throw like girls. I know, I helped run the dunk tank ;)

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          • #6
            Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

            If you end up getting a Camelback, look into getting one of the Rogues. It's not black, and it has a small footprint on your back so less heat retention between you and it. Also, if you are working outside check into getting one of those neck wraps. Deviant made us some a few years back when we were at the AP and those things were lifesavers. Its hard to think a cloth tube filled with those water absorbing crystals could lower your body temp, but holy shit does it work.
            Last edited by noid; August 11, 2007, 11:19.

            I return whatever i wish . Its called FREEDOWM OF RANDOMNESS IN A HECK . CLUSTERED DEFEATED CORn FORUM . Welcome to me

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

              Originally posted by noid View Post
              Its hard to think a cloth tube filled with those water absorbing crystals could lower your body temp, but holy shit does it work.
              Second on those neck wraps...I spent several summers out at asphalt tracks and they were in heavy use by everyone out there.

              Another note on footwear choices. If possible, bring a 2nd pair of shoes to alternate days. Makes the feet and the shoes last longer.
              Aut disce aut discede

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                I had a lot of inquiries about my footwear this year, just as in years past. They are called five finger shoes and are very nice. Realize, though, that it truly is just like being barefoot the whole time. Too much time off the carpet and your feet will get tired. Also, as I tried to tell everyone who asked, get them a full size larger than you normally wear, especially if you have a second toe which is longer than your big toe.

                I've worn them in all kinds of environments including my farm and can attest to the durability of the sole. Beware the creepy feeling that comes with entering public bathrooms...nothing seeps in, but it definitely feels a bit creepy. A wide stance helps a good deal.

                When my feet get dog tired after a long run or long day on my feet I switch to Crocs. Their image as default trendy footwear for the suburban minivan family is unfortunate but the comfort is what matters to me.
                jur1st, esq.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                  Originally posted by jur1st View Post
                  I had a lot of inquiries about my footwear this year, just as in years past. They are called five finger shoes and are very nice.
                  Those look like they'd be awesome to wear, but I have two toes on my left foot that are webbed about halfway. I can't wear toe socks or anything...

                  I discovered last year that MBTs are the most awesomest super best shoes ever. I have worn them each of the last two cons and haven't had any of the problems with soreness that I used to get.

                  This year I also had a pair of Fit Flops. They are pretty remarkable. Rather hard to find, though. (I had to Ebay a pair after the ones I pre-orderd were too large.) Also, gin rinses out of them pretty easily...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                    The most comfortable boots on the market, IMHO, are the Converse boots (http://www.lapolicegear.com/comefo.h...FQcdYwod_V0WMA) The wear like a sneaker, and fit situations like a glove. And, they are pretty stylish.
                    "Never Underestimate the Power of Stupid People in Large Groups"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                      I spent my time in either tevas (ftw) or airwalks.

                      In years past, my shit HURT by the end of con. I don't think most people realize how much walking goons do on a shift. This year, nothing. My whole body felt better, my recovery time this year WOULD have been a few days (as opposed to a week and a half) if I hadn't gotten the crud. I attest all of that to the fact that I've been walking 2-5 miles a day on average for the past 6 months. So you have until February to start walking, then you too will have a comfortable defcon recovery..

                      I also pound water like it's going out of style. My poor kidneys, they did their job at night, shutting down and ignoring the beating they were getting, then come day I start hitting them with the water. Poor, poor kidneys.

                      I'd like to see a link to the neck thingys btw..

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                        Originally posted by noid View Post
                        Also, if you are working outside check into getting one of those neck wraps. Deviant made us some a few years back when we were at the AP and those things were lifesavers. Its hard to think a cloth tube filled with those water absorbing crystals could lower your body temp, but holy shit does it work.
                        yeah, i know that the first friday (my main day of DefCon sun, what with the outdoor BCCC event) i had mine on and it made a big difference... in fact, later on when i was indoors and still wearing it up in the Lockpick Village, i swear i actually felt chilly once in a while... and i am never cold. i don't know if it's mostly perception or if these really do make a significant impact on body temp... but they definitely help beat the heat.

                        Originally posted by flea View Post
                        I'd like to see a link to the neck thingys btw..
                        there used to be places online where you could buy them, but i think enough people figured out that they were insanely overpriced in online shops. now a bunch of pages have instructions on how to make them yourself. a retarded epileptic monkey who watches nothing but MTV and Fox News would still be able to make them on a sewing machine, they're such a simple pattern. everyone has their own methods for sizing the pockets and how much of the moisture crystals to use, but the process is generally very forgiving of errors.

                        also, you don't have to order a ton of the water-absorbing crystals or pay an arm and a leg for them... go to your local garden center and find a small jar of any product known as "Soil Moist" or one of their knock-offs... that's the same stuff. you can even split open a few desiccant packets if, like me, you work in an office that is constantly order electronic hardware and you have a surplus of those things laying around.
                        Last edited by Deviant Ollam; August 13, 2007, 05:31.
                        "I'll admit I had an OiNK account and frequented it quite often… What made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store… iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc... OiNK it existed because it filled a void of what people want."
                        - Trent Reznor

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                        • #13
                          Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                          Originally posted by flea View Post
                          I'd like to see a link to the neck thingys btw..
                          http://www.shop.coolcollars.net/main.sc

                          Did a quick GS for 'neck cool' and this was one of the Google sponsored links..thank you benevolent overlords! :-P

                          Seriously though, as Deviant said, there are a lot of sites out there on how to make them yourself that I found with that search.

                          I've also seen the moisture crystals marketed under "Crystal Earth".
                          Aut disce aut discede

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                          • #14
                            Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                            There are a couple of theories behind the "neck cooler" device and how they work:

                            1) it cools the blood in the carotid artery and thus cools blood to your brain and other blood flow to your body

                            2) it cools the hypothalamus which helps to regulate your body temp. This is some variaration of "the back of your neck controls your body temp"

                            3) it cools the blood in your capillaries--so just the blood near the surface of your skin.

                            I had always heard #1 as the primary reason. However, after doing some research, it appears unlikely that a neck cooler could accomplish #1 or #2, and that #3 is likely the best answer.
                            "\x74\x68\x65\x70\x72\x65\x7a\x39\x38";

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                            • #15
                              Re: Defcon Goon Survival Gear

                              Originally posted by ferretgirl View Post
                              Yes CJ had the torches. I'm very sure all the goon ones were sold out. I'm not sure if he has any of the non goon ones left or not. They are $120 for non goon l.e.d. torch. CJ could be found wearing the F.E.A. (Fun Enforcement Agency) shirt with out sleeves. I'll ask him if he has any left and what it would take to get one.
                              You ma'am are my new personal hero :)
                              Also, I'm uploading a TON of pictures to flickr from defcon15. I have something like 500 going up. Perhaps you're in there somewhere?

                              www.flickr.com/photos/vissago

                              Thanks again!

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