Y2k Preps for the Complete Idiot - Part III - The Finalegreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread
Y2k Preps for the Complete Idiot - Part III - The FINALE.
As mentioned in parts I and II, some folks simply don't have any culinary skills, and the likelihood of them acquiring these skills in the next 5 months are fairly remote. Tastes also vary from person to person. For instance, if I tried to serve my mom rice and beans, I'd be wearing it. I don't like rice and beans myself. If you're looking here for recipes, you've come to the wrong thread. This thread will deal with dinner and a few other things, but there will be NOTHING fancy about it. Meal suggestions will be of the super-quick variety, using only ingredients purchased at a local grocery with expiration dates clearly marked beyond 2000. Again, high-caloric meals are not included. The idiot audience is NOT considered to be working fields, etc. which would require more calories. They're more likely to be sitting at home wondering when the electricity will return.
Beef stew is available in 24-oz cans for $1.50. Chicken and dumplings are available in 10-oz cans for $1.49 or 3-lb cans for $3.69. If you like oriental entrees, La Choy (which has no expiration dates listed) has 1 lb-12 oz cans of Noodles with oriental chicken, sweet and sour chicken, etc. which range in price from $3.45 - $3.69. If you'd like those oriental dishes thrown over rice, Minute Rice can be obtained at $1.50 for a 14-oz box, $2.99 for a 28-oz box, or $3.79 for a 42-oz box. If you'd prefer chow-mein noodles, a 3-oz can of La Choy brand goes for $.99. A 5-oz can of Kroger brand goes for $.89. Dinty Moore offers classics that have very WAY OUT expiration dates. They're packaged as a meal for one, and the boxes stack quite nicely. Prices for these range from $1.50 to $2.19 and include: Beef Stew, Beefy Ravioli, Chicken and Mashed Potatoes, Chicken and noodles, Lasagna with meat, Roast beef and mashed potatoes, Spaghetti with meat sauce, and Turkey with dressing. All of these classics can be cooked by simply setting the meal in a pot of water and heating. I might add that the water doesn't touch the meal, so water may be used again for other purposes. My only complaint with some of these meals would be too much gravy in the meat/potato varieties. My oldest daughter raved about the Lasagna, but you must remember that she's been eating food *I* cooked all her life, so there was no real challenge to Dinty Moore.
Whole small chickens can be purchased in a can for $3.99. There's no expiration date, but canned meats last about 3 years. I found the canned whole chicken pretty awful, myself, but others know what to do with it. 10-oz cans of Chicken Breasts can be obtained at $2.99, 5-oz cans for $1.50. 10-oz cans of Chunk Chicken can be obtained for between $2.29 and $2.79. 5-oz cans of chunk ham can be obtained for $1.49. 6 oz. cans of tuna range from $.50 to $.60 each, with 12-oz cans ranging from $1.78 to $1.99. Hormel has 5-oz cans of chunk turkey with prices ranging from $1.37 to $1.49. Celebrity offers 1-lb boneless hams available at Walgreens and other drug-stores with prices ranging from $1.69 to $2.99. These are quite good, BTW, require NO refrigeration, and will last through 2001 in many cases. Expiration dates are clearly marked. 5-oz cans of Jalapeno Vienna sausage can be bought at $.79. Chicken of the Sea offers 15-oz cans of Mackerel for $1.09 (which lots of folks cook up like salmon patties). 15-oz cans of pink salmon can be purchased for $1.79. Red salmon is more expensive at $2.49 for a 7.5 oz can and $3.98 for 15-oz cans. 5-oz cans of Vienna Sausage can be obtained for $.50 each. Pork luncheon meat can be obtained for $1.29 for a 12-oz can. Solid white tuna is more expensive, with 12-oz cans going for $2.99. Don't even talk to me about spam. I hate the stuff.
There are lots of things one can do with these canned meats. For chicken, one can use chicken helper, which has many varieties for $.99 including Chicken and stuffing and Chicken and Herb Rice. Rice'a Roni has a chicken-oriented side called Chicken and Broccoli for $.79. Pasta Roni also has a chicken helper named Chicken & Broccoli with Linguine for $1.25. Of course ANY of these canned meats can be included in Suddenly Salad meals, including Caesar, Classic, Roasted Garlic Parmesan, Ranch and bacon, etc. Prices for Suddenly Salad range from $.99 to $1.99. Betty Crocker offers a variety of tuna helper which can be obtained for $1.79 or less. One of those Suddenly Salad dishes includes mayonnaise. I typically use Miracle Whip instead of mayonnaise, but Kroger has a brand of "dressing" pretty equivalent to Miracle Whip. It goes for $1.09 for a 16-oz jar and has good expiration dates. While on this topic of dressings, some folks may want to use ketchup or mustard. You can find 20-oz bottles of tomato ketchup now with good dates at $1.09, and 16-oz bottles of mustard for $.99, all with clearly marked expiration dates.
Betty Crocker sells a box of 3-cheese potato mix for $1.59. One box of mashed-potato flakes can be obtained for $1.96 and makes 43 servings. For variety, Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes can be purchased for $1.59 in 7.6oz boxes. Scalloped potatoes come in boxes of 5 oz. for $1.59. Stuffing mixes in recloseable cans can be obtained for between $1.28 and $1.99. Canned new potatoes can be obtained either whole or sliced. Prices can be as low as $.40 on sale. I particularly like these canned potatoes fried up with a small can of chicken and Chicken ala King, available for $1.49. Peas and carrots can be added to round out the meal. If one really likes red beans and rice, RiceARoni sells a quickly cooked package of both for between $.79 and $.99. Tony Chachere brand claims to have a New Orleans recipe for $1.07 for a 7-oz box. For salmon-pattie/mackeral pattie blends, one can obtain 6.25 oz. of Instant Minced Onions at $4.19 at the local grocery. Other spices readily available are Italian Seasoning at $2.59, Pepper at $2.87 for 8 oz, and salt at $0.29 for 1 lb-10oz. If I knew how to cook, I could include many more.
Canned vegetables come in many varieties and can be obtained for as little as $.40 apiece on sale for an 15-oz. can. Prices can also be as high as $1.00+. With variety in mind again, go for what you enjoy. There's chopped spinache, whole kernel corn, creamed corn, lima beans, mixed vegetables, green beans, peas and carrots, carrots, peas, and a wide variety of others that we don't like. Don't forget cranberry sauce and olives. A 32-oz jar of sauerkraut can be purchased for $1.75. If you like sauerkraut, it goes well with those small vienna sausages. Pork and beans are a staple, and can be purchased in the regular Campbell variety for as low as $.29 for an 11-oz can. Bush brand makes fancier varieties...11 oz. can with Brown sugar and bacon, $.99 for the 28-oz can...and and $1.49 for the 28-oz can with smoked ham. While on the topic of fancier varieties, don't lose sight of fruits that are offered with a little different twist. You can purchase plain apple sauce for between $.69 for an 11-oz can and $1.29 for a 25-oz jar. However, cinnamon apple sauce is also available for between $.89 and $1.29 for a 25-oz jar. Delmonte also sells cinnamon pear halves for $1.19 for a 15-oz can.
Plain pastas can be obtained in bags clearly marking expiration dates (like everything in the Idiot Threads). A 12-oz bag of Angel Hair pasta goes for $.39. A lb-bag of elbow macaroni noodles can be obtained for $.89, and a 24-oz bag for $.99. Spaghetti noodles range in price from $.50 for 10-oz, to $1.49 for 24-oz, to $1.99 for 48-oz.
Complete-dish pastas: Other pasta products can be obtained that already contain the sauce, cheese, etc. I think I already mentioned Pasta Roni's Chicken & Broccoli with Linguine for $1.25. Pasta Roni also offers Garlic Alfredo, Angel Hair pasta with lemon & butter, Angel Hair pasta with herbs, White Cheddar & broccoli with Rigatoni, and a 4-cheese with corkscrew pasta. Sales on Pasta Roni products with great expiration dates bring that $1.25 down to $.99/box. Kraft macaroni and cheese DELUXE (typically 4-cheese) variety can now be obtained with great expiration dates for between $1.94 and $2.39 for a 14-oz box.
Ragu (and a few other brands) have clearly marked great expiration dates on spaghetti sauces. Sizes range from 28-oz to 48-oz or larger. Chunky gardenstyle with mushrooms and green peppers or Chunky gardenstyle with super garlic can be obtained in the 28-oz size for $1.50.
You now have ideas on food, water, cooking, and cooling. Heating can be handled by someone else. I live in Texas and if I can't simply bundle up indoors, I'm a reall wimp. As I said in Part I, I'm going to have to hope VERY hard that it gets cold enough at night for my ice-cubes to freeze. So...bare bones here...what else might you need?
First off, Old Git is quite correct. You DO need a fire-extinguisher. You can pick one up at your local grocery for $16.99. Better prices can be obtained elsewhere, but I'm assuming in the idiot threads that you have access to your local stores only. You also need matches. I like the large kitchen matches best. They come in packs of 3, each pack containing 250 matches, and prices range for the 3-pack from $1.44 - $2.00. You also might want a source of light (however dim) for evenings. You can pick up an oil lamp for $8.00 or so at your local grocery store. They also sell spare mantles, and lamp oil. Small bottles of lamp oil are $1.99 for the unscented oil. I burned an oil lamp an entire evening and the loss of oil was so neglibible I didn't notice. The wick also never seemed to burn down. Kerosene lamps are another option, but then you need gallon cans of kerosene, and where does one store that in a high-rise? Aladdin lamps are another option, but they're not available at the local grocery. Get as complex as you choose. I'm trying to keep this very simple...for the complete idiot.
Flashlight: If you don't have a flashlight, you may want to get one. You can pick up a flashlight with 2 D batteries included at your local grocery store. Prices for a decent one start at about $7.00. Batteries for same oftentimes go on sale at Kroger for $2.00 for a 2-pack. The battery expiration dates go out to 2003. If you are concerned that the flashlight bulb might go out, you can pick up a pack of 2 more for about $1.54 or so. I think most folks have a radio around the house that will run either on electricity or batteries. IF you do, you should get some spare batteries for that radio, just in case you want to hear what's going on if your electricity goes out. If you don't, you may save money using communication thoughts provided elsewhere on this forum.
Candles are a nice touch for ambience ANYTIME. Pillars or tapers are both nice. You need holders for the taper variety, but pillar-types can simply be set down on a stable surface. I can provide price ranges for both types if anyone is interested.
PAPER STUFF, PLASTIC BAGS, and OTHER STUFF:
Toilet paper is important to have. [grin] Your needs are dependent on gender...think about it. 4-packs of the cheap stuff can be purchased for as little as $.50/4-roll. 12-packs of Charmin can be obtained for $3.00...packs of 24 for $5.99....right NOW at your local grocery. Winter is typically cold season, so extra tissue may be important. I prefer puffs-plus in the family box, and it goes on sale quite often for $1.50/box. Other paper stuff varies by preference and desire to spend money. If you don't want to waste water doing food cleanup, you can get a good supply of paper-towels and use only one plate, one bowl, one cup, one glass, etc. per person. You can wet two paper towels, put a bit of dish-soap on one (a 42-oz bottle of Palmolive can be purchased at $3.59 for a 42-oz bottle), rub the bowl, plate, cup, glass...whatever, and use the other wet paper towel for rinsing. Paper towels can be obtained in 6-roll packs for $3.00. Cruel mother that I am, I used this one bowl, one plate, etc. method while raising my 3 kids. I wasn't about to be left washing 8,000 dishes because they chose to get a drink or have a snack and leave the dish on the counter. I used the same method to avoid wet towels laying on the bathroom floor to mildew.
Other folks prefer paper plates, paper bowls, etc. You can get 300 for $2.87, or pay as much as $2.49 for 100 paper plates. Your local grocery sells paper-plate holders that you can use beneath the plates to make them more stable. Paper bowls vary in price depending on size. You can get 20 20-oz bowls for about $2.00, or 25 smaller bowls for $1.79. You can get 400 napkins for $2.62, and even get plastic cutlery for about $1.00 for 16 each spoon, knife, fork. You can even line your pots/pans with aluminum foil to avoid washing, or use aluminum foil on your grill (if you're in a position.) 200-sq ft of aluminum foil goes for about $4.00. Of course all this disposable stuff makes garbage. 35 bags of Hefty garbage bags with a tight-closing top goes for $5.59. If you're in a position where your toilet isn't going to flush, you can use 13-gallon bags to line the toilet. Some even come citrus-scented...30 bags for $1.59, with ties to close the top. I wouldn't recommend storing extra gasoline in a high-rise, but if you insist, you can expect to pay $10.00 for a 5-gallon plastic gasoline-approved container at your local grocery. Other discount stores sell the same product for $5.00 (oftentimes including a 1-gallon container as well.)
You may find yourself short on sundries. Don't forget about your daily needs. Feminine protection is important. Birth-control is important (dependent on circumstance.) Bar soap or liquid soap is good (and can be used with the same paper-towel method as noted for the dishes.) Deoderant is important if you use it now. Bactine or another form of disinfectant is important. Contact cleaner, cough drops, cough syrup, bandaids, flu and cold medicine, flu, cold, and cough medicine, analgesics (aspirin and the like), anti-diarrheal medicines, mouthwash, nasal decongestant, neosporin, denture stuff for those with dentures, shampoo, toothpaste, hair conditioner, and waterless hand cleaner are all available and please don't forget lip balm. [grin]
KEEPING STUFF CLEAN:
Even if you're not using bleach to purify water, it comes in handy as an addition to wiping off counters in your kitchen, toilet, bathroom, etc....not to mention cleaning your clothes. You can get 64-oz for $.89 or go with the Kroger lemon-scented variety for $1.09/gallon. You can pick up a 12-lb box of Tide for $12.00 and use very small amounts to wash out garments in your sink even in a high-rise. You can spent money on a spring-loaded clothes-line to dry these clothes in your bathroom, or you can pick up 100-ft of clothes-line and hang it anywhere you can. You can get 100 clothes-pins for under $3.00. A little bit of white vinegar ($.59/pint) mixed with some water will clean your floors, cabinets, etc. and even keep the shine on wood stuff. You can get 54-oz of Windex for $3.00 to clean off glass and plastic surfaces. An old-fashioned broom actually does a good job on carpets, and I understand that vinegar and water will remove most spills from carpets.
This ends the Y2k for the Complete Idiot series.
-- Anita (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 21, 1999
Thank you for posting a lot of great practical information!
-- Annie (email@example.com), July 21, 1999.
The most important part of Anita's Idiot series -- Dinner. It's not easy to store convenient dinners for diabetics and vegetarians, but it CAN be done.
For diabetics, simply study the labels on the cans of meat products you buy. You should already know what's good in this area because there are so many times when you come home late from work and all you want to do is sleep--but you absolutely HAVE to eat that meal, you have no choice. Hence, you open a can for speed and convenience.
There are now lots of canned products for vegetarians, ranging from pretty good to bloody awful. Loma Linda/Worthington products (same company) run the gamut. The fake chicken is pretty good, the fake scallops are bloody awful. The big hot dogs are better than the small hot dogs, for some reason. And there are other canned products available at a whole foods supermarket in a city near you. (In New Orleans, it was just up the street from our warehouse district apartment; here in the middle of Durham it's half a mile.)
But the easiest way to take care of your vegetarian AND diabetic needs at the same time is to order the buckets of Y2K meals from Lumen at soybean.com. They're meant for non-D/V eaters but serve diet minorities very well. You can order trial packages at low cost too, about $5. Here are some examples (250 servings per bucket, w/rice, pasta, etc.):
Country Breakfast, 53.95; Chicken A La King, Texas Chili, Chunky Beef Stew, each 74.95; Beef Stroganoff, 69.59; Sweet 'n Sour Chicken, Spaghetti Dinner, Hungarian Goulash, Chicken Noodle Dinner, each 73.59; Italian Dinner, 65.95
Very easy to order by phone or at the site (extensive catalogue, they've just added dried fruits and veggies). Delivery time is around 3-4 weeks, mine came in just under 3 weeks.
If you have no worries about water and you want to save storage space too, then you might want to consider freeze-dried veggies. Besides adventurefoods.com and soybean.com, Art Pollard (who usually supplies the Mormon community) has a good selection of No. 10 cans of FD veggies. Easy to order, just go to his food prep forum at
and follow the link to the order page. There was about a five-week delivery time when I ordered. And I plan to order more from Art. Nice guy.
Canned vegetarian baked beans can be very high in sugar. Last time I checked, the sugar content ranged from about 6 or 7 grams up to 13 or 14. Bush's vegetarian beans are the lowest in sugar I've seen. (Heinz VB has changed its low-sugar formula and it's now far too sugary.)
Diabetics and vegetarians alike go for wholewheat pastas--more complex carbs and readily available everywhere these days. Also see the Asian food section at your supermarket, see if they have buckwheat noodles for a change. Check labels for objectionable additives, reach to back of stack to retrieve the freshest-dated. (Good advice for anything you buy at the store.)
For families of one or two people, look for small cans of pasta/spaghetti/pizza sauce to put over pasta. I prefer cans anyway, I'm too much of a klutz around glass and avoid it if possible. Small cans are preferred to avoid leftovers which might develop organisms causing food poisoning.
I got my fire extinguishers at Lowe's. Home Depot and other DIY stores have them too, of course. Make an effort to go to one of these stores (or Wal-Mart) because you might also want to pick up a small fireproof box to put your cash and important papers in. (About $20 for half-hour fire rating.) Matches--buy also the long fireplace kind for safer lighting of barbecues and such.
For lighting, you might want to check with Odd One on the LED thread. LEDs are the latest development in lighting--tiny bulbs putting out a good amount of light (in clusters, definitely suitable for reading) and last for ages, take very little battery power. You can read about them at the realgoods.com catalog site. Battery chargers and rechargeable batteries--best buys are at ccrane.com. We have oil lamps but, like many city dwellers, we also have curious cats. I have the kind of lamp that can be hung from a hook, rather than the table lamp kind--much safer anyway, for children and pets as well as klutzes like me.
Ccrane.com has the hand-cranked Baygen radio in several forms. One of them has been specially modified by Crane with an LED light attachment, so you can listen to the radio and read at the same time. You can also buy an inexpensive solar panel to run the radio at the ccrane.com on-line catalogue. The Baygen is a very sturdy piece of equipment, built to take some knocks.
Consumer Reports likes Scott TP for economy. Oddly enough, the single packs are often cheaper than the 4-packs. Kroger look-alike (500-double sheet roll) is indistinguishable from and cheaper than Scott. I'm funny about paper towels and buy only plain white ones, recycled paper ones if possible and the price is right. I'm afraid I've stocked up on paper plates, too, with a stack of those wicker support thingies. I've also bought a dozen cotton napkins (UK - serviettes) to add to the ones I've already got, and I've bought extra dish towels (UK - tea towels) too. I'm trying to get used to using them regularly now and it's saving an enormous amount of forest.
For grill use, I've stashed several rolls of heavy-duty foil--can't risk losing food on the coals because of flimsy foil. If you're choosing to rely on, say, a Coleman stove rather than a barbecue, buy the BBQ tools anyway. The further away you are from the flames, the safer you'll be.
Just in case, I've bought a camping potty for emergency use. It was bought, brand-new and unopened, at a yard sale for $20, but if I hadn't found it I would have ordered one from somewhere. I have some bottles of the necessary chemical but I've also stashed lots of plastic grocery bags for waste disposal. (To store them, fold them, squish the air out of them and put them in a small cardboard box--you can get a lot in there!)
I'm stashing lots of babywipes for quick "touch-ups" of the important bits--if it becomes necessary. For deodorant we've got those crystal deodorants, which last at least a year. (We;ve used them for about 12 years with no ill effects--very efficacious.) It's worth a trip to Wal-Mart or similar to load up on OTCs, vitamins and other drugstore necessities. You'll save much more than the time and gasoline. Also while there, pick up a few pairs of "cheater" reading glasses. They're cheap and it's better to have and not need. . .
Bleach begins to lose its strength after six months. At a year, half its strength is gone, so bear that in mind when stashing. If you want to stash supplies for a year, then buy more bleach than you think you'll need. I'm stashing liquid detergent because it dissolves more easily when hand-washing in cold water. BTW, tread your clothes in the tub (like grapes for wine), as I did when I lived in an apartment and couldn't afford the laundromat. Remember the wet clothes will weigh a ton so don't hang too much on your bathroom line at once.
Consumer Reports gives this recipe for window and glass cleaner: to 1/2 cup white vinegar, add water to make up to one gallon. You can add a bit of blue food coloring to remind you what it is.
Anita's threads are a great beginner's AND old-timer's resource. I hope contributors will add convenient hints to each one as time goes on.
-- Old Git (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 21, 1999.
Anita, thanks for putting all of the effort into these threads. They are a fantastic start, and are very much appreciated.
-- de (delewis @inetone.net), July 21, 1999.
Personally I was pleasantly surprised at what I found in the canned food aisles of my local market and WalMart. At WalMart sugar-free French Vanilla creamer and Sam's Choice McIntosh apple sauce. At HEB,Wolf Chunky Steak Cut Chili, READ German Potato Salad and don't forget sweet potatoes to go with the Spam. Also in regards to the self life of bleach, I collected IBC Root Beer bottles and have transferred a gallon to those dark glass bottles.
-- Ruthi (Nomokat@aol.com), July 21, 1999.
What are crystal deodorants and where do you buy them?
-- Sylvia (email@example.com), July 21, 1999.
Anita and Old Git,
Great work ladies. :-)
-- Lilly (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 22, 1999.
Sylvia, crystal deodorants are mineral crystals mined in Thailand. I got mine from the local whole foods supermarket; they're also available at health food stores and co-ops, places like that. They're probably available by mail order but I've never had the need to go that route. A crystal about the size of a small tangerine costs around $8. You can get fancier ones on wooden handles (in fact, I think Realgoods.com has those), but you pay for the convenience.
-- Old Git (email@example.com), July 22, 1999.
I'm glad to hear I'm not the only klutz on this forum. I don't have pets, so needn't worry about anyone but me knocking something over. I VERY CAREFULLY set the oil lamp on the fireplace mantle and left it alone. [grin] I'm very careful about the glass jars of spaghetti sauce also, and prefer the brands in glass to the canned variety. When the kids were small, I could tell everyone that we only had plastic dishware because the kids did the dishes. HA!
However, you said, "reach to back of stack to retrieve the freshest- dated. (Good advice for anything you buy at the store.)"
I assumed this to be true until I actually began checking expiration dates. It seems that our local shelf-packers don't go further than stacking the recent additions at the front. I don't suppose I need to tell you how folks stop and stare when we pull out all the goods on a shelf to check them. [grin again] I learned a LOT in these expiration checks. One thing I learned was that there's a LOT of food on the supermarket shelves that have ALREADY expired!
-- Anita (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 22, 1999.
Oh Anita, you have no idea!
With this vision thing (thanks George) I have, I can easily knock something over and break it. Then no doubt I'll step on some glass as I'm trying to get something to clean it up, as has happened. After that, I'm really in trouble because my joints won't bend to allow me to get to the sliver of glass! Yup, the taste of jar sauce is far superior to the canned but you have to make trade-offs! Spaghetti sauce mix is an alternative.
You say, "It seems that our local shelf-packers don't go further than stacking the recent additions at the front. I don't suppose I need to tell you how folks stop and stare when we pull out all the goods on a shelf to check them. [grin again] I learned a LOT in these expiration checks. One thing I learned was that there's a LOT of food on the supermarket shelves that have ALREADY expired!
Wow! The Humgarian and I routinely chose restocking days to go to the store because that's when they restock for the coupon bargains! We frequently see the stockers rearranging the shelves with the freshest to the back so we don't have to take all that stuff out.
As for expired food, yup, seen it too. But I've also talked to manufacturers who say, yes, it's a one-year expiration date but we've never had any reason to test it beyond that date. Still, I won't buy anything with an expired date on it--what's the point of having them if they're not adhered to???
Now's a good time to mention that the largest size is not always the cheapest (as in the single Scott TP I mentioned). It often applies to frozen goods, with the 10-oz pack of veggies cheaper than the bags. Not always, check the per unit price to be sure.
Also, if you buy good sale items, position them in the cart so they come through last (on the bottom if necessary). That way you can watch the register screen and make sure the sale price has been programmed in.
-- Tight Old Git (email@example.com), July 22, 1999.
Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr near Monterey, California
Anita says: "Bleach begins to lose its strength after six months. At a year, half its strength is gone, so bear that in mind when stashing. If you want to stash supplies for a year, then buy more bleach than you think you'll need."
I wonder what the shelf life is of the granulated superchlorinator (ie dehydrated bleach) that I'll be using.
-- H20_Dancr (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 23, 1999.
Actually, 'twas I who mentioned the bleach. If what you're using is similar to swimming pool bleach, then I understand it lasts a very long time but I don't know exactly how long. Art Pollard has some info on that at his food forum, it was one of the very early posts:
If you can't fiond the specific info, you might e-mail Art about it.
-- Old Git (email@example.com), July 25, 1999.