Saturday, July 10, 2010

Don’t lose your common sense while prepping

At my fiancee’s insistence I watched the show “Wife Swap” with her last night (the show was better than I expected and not like the name sounds), and actually I was intrigued when I heard that one of the families on tonight’s episode was obsessed with 2012. Unfortunately, that family IMO gives a bad name to those of us who are trying not to leave our common sense behind as we stock up and prepare for pretty rough times ahead. The parents made their kids come home immediately after school every day “just in case something happens.” They wouldn’t let the kids participate in sports because 2012-oriented tasks were much more important and made them participate in regular hazmat-suit drills in the backyard. They even had a dry-erase marker board in the kitchen counting down the number of days until 12-21-12!! These people really didn’t seem to have much of a connection to what was right in front of their faces. I mean, sure, they have their survival food stash (which looked like cases of MREs) under the stairs, but really, making your kids wear “survival packs” with them everywhere they go?

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got nearly a year’s worth of food on hand for both me and my fiancee (trying to add a month’s worth of food every two weeks), I’ve got a steadily growing ammo stash (need more range time, though) and I hang out online with really smart people at GIM and a couple other sites and read stories on a couple dozen news sites a day to try to read between the “official” news stories and see what’s really happening, but c’mon, what are the odds of a particular family in a particular neighborhood needing hazmat suits for the entire family on any given day? You’re more likely to encounter hungry, angry mobs ransacking houses for food in most SHTF situations that I can imagine, because most people like to eat every day.

Until this past year, there was a Cold War-era stash of VX nerve gas at a military depot about 40 miles away from where I live. In the event of a VX leak (not to worry, all the VX at that location has now been neutralized), residents in close proximity to the depot received an automated warning and were expected to have enough time to seal up the doors and windows in their residences with, I’m guessing, plastic sheeting or other such material. But being 40 miles downwind, there would either be a lot of dead people between my house and that depot by the time the VX reached me, or the gas would dissipate into a dilute-enough concentration that it wouldn’t be an issue outside of the immediate area of the depot. I can’t imagine what any one family imagines it might encounter that it needs hazmat suits and drills for their entire family…unless they all had bad bean burritos for dinner.

But seriously, that family on TV tonight really give a bad name for those of us who haven’t lost our common sense and are trying to prepare for the most likely SHTF scenarios based upon our life situations. Since my fiancee is disabled, I’m not in a position to bug-out except in the most extreme circumstances, so we’re going to keep prepping and keep stocking up right here while keeping our jobs and not losing our minds.

Click here to search for this episode of "Wife Swap," if for no other reason than to know what NOT to do.

EDIT: I almost forgot another very important detail–this family had bought everything on credit and didn’t plan to keep on paying after, of course, the world ends in 2012. WHAT KIND OF PREPPERS BUY EVERYTHING ON CREDIT????