Saturday, August 7, 2010

In which I describe what others may call "paranoia..."

My survival/prepper journey began maybe two years ago or so. The Architect has always been kind of a zombie survival nerd, and I always kind of ignored him or occasionally made fun of him for it.

After having had enough of my prodding, I remember The Architect finally spinning around, and, exasperated, barked, "Don't you realize that this zombie stuff is a metaphor for real-life HUMAN survival situations?"

With a laugh, I asked, "What could POSSIBLY go wrong?"

The Architect then explained to me that grocery stores only keep about three days worth of food in stock, and if truck drivers went on strike, what then?

That's all it took for me to begin researching ways to keep us safe and well-fed. Through forums and articles, I learned of EMPs, financial collapse, mass illness, etc.

And then The Architect bought the book, "One Second After," a book about an EMP detonating over the US.

I was literally sickened and terrified as I read it.

It's quite true that civil society is held together quite loosely, and once people start missing meals, it kind of goes down the toilet on an epic scale.

And is the idea of an EMP over the United States really all that far-fetched? Iran hasn't been all that warm and squishy and friendly toward us, and now that they've vowed to send a man to space, it's even more feasible. If Iran can send a man to space, launching an EMP over the US should be a piece of cake.

At this point, financial collapse in this country seems more a matter of WHEN, not IF.

James Wesley Rawles illustrates a pretty likely senario in his book, "Patriots."

I actually highly reccommend Rawles' book, as it is as much a survival how-to as it is a work of fiction, despite his awkward and deliberate insertions in the book that remind you that, Yes, he is, in fact, a big ol' Christian.

In practice in "day-to-day" life as well as in theory, having a few days worth of food is a good idea for ANYONE.

A year ago, Atlanta and its surrounding areas were hit with torrential rainfall, causing substantial flooding.

Crash actually called me at work that day, telling me to drop what I was doing if I planned on getting home anytime in the next few days.

A ride home that normally takes half an hour took almost three hours as swollen creeks and rivers poured over onto the roads, cutting off all but one of my routes home.

I learned that not twenty minutes after returning home, the last detour to my house had been closed, as another bridge flooded.

Thankfully, even though a plethora of roads remained closed the next day, The Architect and I didn't have to even attempt to go out for food since there were plenty in the cupboards.

So truly, WHY do I prep and seek more survival skills? So I won't be a victim. So I won't have to rely on anyone else. I wish more people would take the same responsibility.


  1. Our motto has always been "Prepare for the worst and pray for the best." We aren't hurting anyone else with our preps and " when" something happens we'll be prepared and even be helpful to others in a time of crisis.

    We too have been ridiculed by family and friends for decades, but now they are beginning to sit up and take notice! Keep focused, support each other and go on with your life.

    BTW... Have read and re-read Patriots, need to look into the first book you mentioned, thank you :o)

  2. Like The Architect has said... if we're wrong, so what? We've helped the economy with our purchases and have kind of a neat hobby.

    But if THEY'RE wrong? Well.... I'm really going to hate to say "I told you so..."

    One Second After is a great book.

  3. Aside from anything else, speaking as someone living in Florida, we keep getting reminded to keep at least a few day's worth of water and a week or so of food handy through all of hurricane season and preferably more. Stores will run out of a lot of things in a hurry if a storm comes, so the time to make sure you have batteries, chlorine, propane, gas canisters, bottled water etc. is now, not when the warning is issued and none of those things are left in stock. Having lived through a pretty good storm season... When something like that hits, it can be a week before there's proper water and food distribution and society is properly re-established, and a few weeks before power comes back. I'd imagine that earthquake zones, northern regions that can get blizzards etc. all have their equivalents.

  4. I find it kind of interesting that most of the activities of "prepping" are activities that make sense independently of prepping.

    Keeping several days of staples on hand means you get to bargain shop, buying in bulk or when you catch a good sale. You can save up to 50% on your food expenses by doing this.

    Learning to repair your own car or whatnot saves a *shit-ton* of money.

    Growing your own food saves money and gym fees.

    And, it's pretty common for "prepper" activities to be really very handy for the "minor" doomsdays, hurricanes, floods, like that. it need not be the end of the world to be the end of getting to the grocery store.

    All that said, welcome to the dark-side. I am sorry.