Don’t talk to your neighbors without reading this!



This is a guest post and entry in our non-fiction writing contest  by Ed

Efforts with the Unprepared…

I have seen articles on the prepper web sites from time to time about the need to convince neighbors to begin prepping. On “Doomsday Preppers,” a woman in Utah made it her “mission” to knock on doors and to leave prepper starter kits with people in her town.

In this effort, she did have an advantage many do not enjoy in that, being in Utah, more of the people she approached would no doubt be Mormons (which is to say conservative, law and order types, and with better than average moral principles, at least that is this non-Mormon’s opinion based on past contacts). Mormons are urged by their church to set aside a year’s supply of food for emergencies, although I have read postings by Mormons indicating that, as with advice to members of many religions on various matters concerning behavior, the great mass of Mormons do not actually prepare to this level.

The benefit of making such an effort with neighbors is that, morally, you are making efforts that could save lives if the worst case scenario developed. In addition, from a purely self-interest perspective, you are improving your own security because the better prepared those individuals are around you, the better off you will be. “In numbers there is strength.”

The problem with approaching neighbors (with whom you have varying levels of familiarity) and/or total strangers nearby, is that the likelihood that you will actually convince these people to make serious efforts to prep is, unfortunately, small. The unemployment rate may be awful and European economies may teetering be on the verge of a collapse that will start a domino effect, but the average American is more interested in keeping track of who is ahead on “Dancing with the Stars.” These types are sometimes referred to as “sheeple,” and they comprise the great mass of the American population.

So what happens if you fail to produce any changes in your neighbors’ preparedness level? Well, frankly, you have made it very obvious to everyone around you that your house is the neighborhood “supply depo.t” When an emergency occurs, your unprepared neighbors will view you as their source when they need anything if the emergency becomes very prolonged.

Even if nothing worse occurs, can you imagine the chants of “Hoarder! Hoarder!” from those standing on the street in front of your house? From their perspective, a hoarder would be anyone who was wise enough to put aside anything for hard times which they now want to share (in essence, a socialist mentality on steroids).

I have seen references on survival web sites concerning some individuals’ troubling responses to those urging them to prepare. The responses were something along the lines of “I-don’t-need-to-buy-stuff-because-I-have-enough-guns-and-ammo-to-take-what-I-want.” While very unsettling, the God’s honest truth here is that this attitude is representative of those who comprise a significant percentage of the population. (My advice here would be to eliminate all further contact with such individuals on every level, since they are clearly sociopaths.)

Not nearly as troubling, but of serious concern, is the response, “I-don’t-need-to-buy-stuff-because-I’ll-just-come-to-your-house.” Whoa!

I just read a novel entitled “Shut Down” by W. R. Flynn. It is set in the Portland area and it involves an economic collapse and its aftermath. In it, members of a group are thrown together in a Portland suburb as a result of an incident that takes place after the collapse begins in the city. Neighbors first begin by cooperating with and borrowing routine items from each other. Everyone is helping others.

Desperation begins to develop as the breakdown is prolonged, however, and the group decides to “bug out” before things get really ugly in the neighborhood.

The small group is able to make its way to a farm (conveniently) owned by the parents of a member of the group, a farm in a relatively protected/defendable area not too far from Portland. While this survival yarn is entertaining, the author does not deal with how the townsmen in this relatively remote area deal with individual shortages when critical items run low. There also seems to be so much cooperation in matters involving common defense of the town so as to make the viewer wonder about whether the novel’s scenario is much too optimistic about likely human behavior.

As a bottom line here, I suggest that you keep your preparedness efforts relatively low profile so that your home does not become the “go to” place in your neighborhood for the majority of those who are unprepared. Share your views with only those close to you, those you would be willing to help even if your efforts to get them to prepare fall on deaf ears–since there is a strong likelihood that your efforts will.

This is an entry in our non-fiction writing contest where you could win:

First Prize) Winner will receive a Wise Essentials Kit courtesy of LPC Survival and an EcoZoom’s Versa Stove courtesy of EcoZoom stoves.. A value of over $300.

Second Prize) Winner will receive a Stealth Body Armor Level II vest courtesy of SafeGuard ARMOR™ LLC and a $150 gift certificate for Wolf Ammo courtesy of LuckyGunner.com A total prize value of over $600.

Third Prize) Winner will receive copies of both of my books “31 Days to Survival: A Complete Plan for Emergency Preparedness” and “Dirt-Cheap Survival Retreat: One Man’s Solution” and a Katadyn Siphon Water Filter courtesy of Mayflower Trading Company. A total prize value of $107.

Contest ends on June 5 2012.

Comments

  1. Drew Kelor says:

    This article is sage advice.

  2. Carl in W.V. says:

    My DW cousin came over yesterday due to my SIL tragic car accident on mothers day. Her husband is fresh out of the army and is a full blown gamer. the small talk started to include my extensive gun collection when he looked at me and said “You’re not one of those Doomsday preppers are you, that belives the goverment is going to collapse.” I looked him right in the eye and said “Nope I think the Army is testing experimental drugs on our troops and they are going to start a Zombie Apocolypse.” Ten minutes later he looked at his wife and said we better go it’s getting late. I think some people will just not prepare no matter what so there is no use to blow OPSEC.

    • village idiot says:

      Carl, I have all my firearms in a large gun safe in a locked room in my house. No one goes in but me and my wife and sons. I have some relatives I wouldn’t trust any further than what I could throw them. They have no idea what I have, and neither does anyone outside my immediate family(wife and oldest children). I have a teenage daughter who has no idea what all I have. Loose lips sink ships. And OPSEC, first and foremost.

      • I do not have teenage girls, they are all 5 and under, so this is based on my limited experience as a father:
        -I am reminded daily that my children pick up bits of information and weave a tapestry that while sometime fanciful, is often shockingly accurate to things my wife and I have tried to conceal (such as surprise overnight vacations and presents).
        With all due respect, how do you know she knows nothing?
        Look at the recent viral video of the dad shooting his daughters laptop for her facebook posts. The teen’s lack of knowledge about what her parents were doing, (apparently) did not prevent her from providing the world with all sorts of information about that family.
        Loose lips due sink ships, but remember that going off half-cocked can be deadly as well.
        You may need to assess what your daughter knows and what she thinks she knows and then move forward from there.

        • village idiot says:

          Actually, you have a point, and part of operations security is a constant assessment of what might have been discovered accidentally, guessed by certain behavior patterns, or perhaps discovered out of curiosity. The same applies for neighbors, friends, and other relatives.

    • “Nope I think the Army is testing experimental drugs on our troops and they are going to start a Zombie Apocolypse.”

      LMAO….. I love the comeback. Bet you don’t have to worry about him pumping you for information.

    • ace riley says:

      as a combat vet- i think that was a very funny reply– i am surprised he did not take more interest

  3. Notsomuch says:

    Living in earthquake country the ‘thing’ to do is urge everyone to be prepared for the big one. The hope being the light is seen by some and more extensive preparations will be taken. Baby steps to begin and hope there is enough time to make a significant difference for the better.

    • That’s exactly what I do in CA, and throw in “zombie apocalypse” to take the edge off.
      Something like, “Whether you live in CA and are worried about “the big one” or a “zombie apocalypse”….etc”
      Hopefully the humor gets people to pay attention.

      • axelsteve says:

        Between Rodney King type riots and the big one we Komradfornians need to be prepared.We just need to be under the radar of tdl and hisflying monkeys

  4. A very good article. Most people are indeed sheeple. I know my neighbors are the same – mostly older folks who are mostly worried about making sure their driveways are tarred and destroying any weeds that come up on their grass than anything else.

    My benefit is that in Canada, the level of gun ownership is much lower than in America. I’m likely the only person who has guns in my area, and I would NEVER use it to strongarm supplies. Besides, the sheeple in my neighborhood wouldn’t have any long term. Not that I know that, I’m not particularly friendly with them, we all just go about our own business.

    I have a group of like minded friends. And a bug out plan and location. The problem is my friends are fairly scattered so actually bugging out would take some time. My downfall would be that I will not abandon them. And of course my parents just don’t get it and I’d have to physically get them to move.

    I’m of the opinion though, that if SHTF in a big way, get far, far away from sheeple. Stampeding sheeple will kill you!

    • Mike,
      You’ve thought through this well it seems. There is one thing I just don’t see a lot of discussion around, and admittedly it’s not very black and white, is when to bug out.

      I know there are schools of thought for sheltering in place versus bugging out and some sound reasons for both. I don’t want to debate that here. With all the unknowns, you would be wise to pay each some attention.

      I’m curious to hear how others view trying to ride it out and when to get te heck out.

      • livinglife says:

        I have a split plan. my friend has a city house and a country house along with two sets of property we have started to stock and fortify. If we are in the city then we hold up 48-72 hours to let the crazies shoot each other as they are out looting stores and having fire fights with the zombie prepared and then head out to the sticks. There are several routes to choose from as well. Worst case scenario I take my mountain bike for a nice long ride.

        • i thought about waiting the initail downfall out as well. but then i came to the realization that more people have scoped long range rifles in my area then AR’s or shotty’s or even handguns.

      • If the situation allows, I can ride it out here at home. That being said we are fully prepared to bug out to our summer place. If you know you’re movig early you need to be ahead of the rush to prevent other complications. A hurricane is a good example for this scenario. Make your decision and beat the traffic. Second case is that you can’t beat the crowd and bug in for the initial 48 – 72 hours. Now getting out presents a few more variables than before. Blocked routes, checkpoints, fewer resources like available fuel and food to “top off”. I assume it’s also a bit more dangerous between downed trees or power lines and upset folks who did little or nothing to prep.

        It boils down to too many variables so in planning you need to identify the most likely for your region. You need to narrow your focus but have some backup plans that run deeper than an extra few MREs or an alternate route. Plan A, B and Z as if this wasn’t complicated enough.

        My true love is all the “gear”, but considering all the possible situations makes this fun and keeps us sharp!

    • “I’m of the opinion though, that if SHTF in a big way, get far, far away from sheeple. Stampeding sheeple will kill you!”

      LOL!!!!

    • Mike, I’m so waiting for the T shirt.
      Stampeding sheeple will kill you!
      roflmao

      Any pack members own a silk screening company? I’ll take two of those.

    • So many preppers see Canada’s gun laws as a disadvantage, but there’s something to be said for a lower risk of the urban refugees shooting you

      • Definitely there are ‘less’ guns per person in Canada than US, with with around 7 million guns for 30 million people, its not negligible. And seeing as there is absolutely no concealed(or open) carry, you know that something will think real hard about taking one with them. I’d rather not have the arms race until you have to.

  5. JP in MT says:

    I have noticed that in times of plenty, preppers are called many unflattering things roughly based around “fool”. I have seen people called out for stocking up, and asked “What do you want, things to collapse?” My response usually is “Because you have car insurance, are looking to have an accident?” This usually ends the conversation.

    I also fear the label “Hoarder”, which is what those that don’t prepare will be calling for big brother to squash in the lean times.

  6. Michele says:

    I absolutely agree with you, Ed. While I am hoping to have enough to save my neighbors (although I have not talked to them about this), I learned this lesson the hard way. I used to carpool with a guy who told me he didn’t need to prep, he had lots of bullets and those didn’t have an expiration date – he could take what he wanted (that’s when I went into gun and ammo purchasing mode). If TSHTF, I’m sure he will be back here to try to take the preps I have sacrificed every spare penny to keep MY family alive.

    • Hi Michele,
      In that case it will be up to you or your family to give him one final quick lesson as to how hard it will be to take someone’s preps. If he has identified himself to you as this type of person than he has already given you the advantage by blowing his OPSEC. In South Texas we exterminate varmints on sight.

  7. Yeah, shows like Doomsday Preppers are pretty ridiculous. My neighbors sure as hell don’t need to know my business, and that’s the way it will stay. In a mass crisis situation, no one can be trusted in my opinion. And as to books being too optimistic, Oh Yeah! Rather than the, co-operative “commune” type atmosphere, they would do better to watch Mad Max. A whole lot closer to the truth of the human psyche.

  8. I take the low profile approach as well, have since the beginning for the most part. Some take the CERT, ARES, FFL, FEMA course certificates, ham license, own a blog (no offense MD), be on Doomsday Preppers, discuss community preparedness with their local emergency manager, et al path and don’t mind laying it out there for anyone to see. Maybe it’s the difference between a prepper and a survivalist? Or maybe I’m just more paranoid than most. Not to suggest the internet is really anonymous or safe from big government/business tracking you down, but at least you’re basically safe from your neighbors and local government knowing. Need to be aware that decisions you make today in persuit of preparedness would be difficult or impossible to undo later, should you ever wish to. Just my .02

    • Red,
      I guess I’m one of those EMA, Ham Radio (ARES, RACES), Firearms Instructor, CERT, Gardening, Beekeeping folks; however living in the country I have neighbors that each in their own way are more prepared than most. A friend and I put on preparedness seminars and when asked about our preps, we simply tell folks that we are preparing, but still have a long way to go. What that means is up to the listener to decide, and they generally take it to mean that like them, we are working a bit at a time. It’s kind of like that hope & change thing that allows people to make it mean whatever they want it to mean.

      For me, having all of the contacts and skills training available far outweighs any small amount of OPSEC it might compromise, because I still don’t talk about details of my preps (what, where, and how much) to anyone not in my trusted circle. Finally, trying to educate the masses is something that allows me emotionally and mentally to go to bug in mode if and when it becomes necessary and not worry about those who failed to pay attention. I did my part, and now it’s up to them.

      • OhioPrepper,

        No disrespect meant to those that choose this path. I’d just rather do it on my own and not Go With (the) Crowd, if you get me. Even if you don’t advertise details of your preparedness, it’s still out there for all to see that you have the capability to broadcast information over a large area, and to train individuals in firearm use. What if the SHTF and someone decides they don’t want you to do these things, or only if under their control? No group or entity (purposefully vague here) is going to leave you unaccounted for. Firearm instructors and ham operators, in some scenarios, might be seen as “loose cannons” with “big mouths”. And who else do they find if they find you? For me, it’s my family and friends, and I owe them more than the community at large.

        There’s always going to be the opportunity to help others in a disaster, when it happens. No need to advertise the ability now imo.

      • d2 prep says:

        Ohio, interesting points. I recently completed CERT. On my street we have a fire chief and a cop. I was thinking of holding a 30 minute “earthquake and fire preparedness chat with our neighbors and using the professionals to help with the discussion. I like your response of “I still have a long way to go”. Thoughts on getting my street prepared for an “earthquake”?

        • d2 prep,
          Sounds like a plan already in progress. You can organize it, but get the PROs to do most of the presentations. Watch your neighbors and listen to their questions and you can probably glean who is serious and who might even make a good ally, all of the time keeping that OPSEC and plausible deniability, since you were just a concerned citizen who organized the event, and took advantage of the resources in your neighborhood.

          • d2 prep says:

            Thanks Ohio, in my response to Prudent below I spell out the catch 22 of the whole scenario for me. I will sleep on it for a few days. If anything I get a chance to wear that cool green CERT outfit in front of the neighbors (the darn helmet barely fits my big melon and the vest looks like kids clothing on me.. LOL)

        • charlie (NC) says:

          Well here is the deal. I started prepping hard in the fall of ’08 but as the economy got worse and my business fell off
          I found myself using up my preps as they approached their expiration dates and sadly was unable to replace them.

          That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

          There is an alternate means of prepping and it involves acquiring things that can’t or won’t likely be stolen. What I mean is learning skills that will help you survive and a putting back the tools to help you use your skills. A hord of hungry sheeple is not likely to take your garden hoe, hammer or the box you use to turn wood ash into lye for soap making and they can’t eat your knowledge of how to use them. If you have the tools, the skills and the seeds and enough food to make it through the first winter you have a good chance of surviving. There won’t be a lot of sheeple left to bother you afterwards.

          I don’t particularly like Romen noodles but I have a stash of them and I’ll gladly give to someone who is hungry if they’ll take them and go away. If they decide they want to search to see what else I have may God have mercy on their souls.

          • Prudent says:

            Good thread there .. Here is a multi part question for the current disscusion .. Leadership! Do you want it? If you are the ‘one’ known to be the trained ‘expert’ on your block, who would you expect your fellows to come to should the SHTF that badly. Does ones ‘known’ expertice make you a person of interest… threat… source… leader by virtue of your knowledge-skill sets-means? Owwh! long one huh….. I see leading humans that are in a near or total panic much like herding cats when you toss out the chopped up liver.

            Another thing if I may .. Lets say you have the ‘talent’ and have put it to work in your life. who of us want to take on the responcibility of those ‘cats’ and thier future well being. ??????

            • d2 prep says:

              Prudent, good points. I struggle with this greatly. There are many neighbors that we like a lot and then there are those others…not so much. Most of them are clueless and will be begging for help if they don’t somehow get informed and act on it. That is the key, what will they do once they get the advice? My backup plan is to head to my retreat 2 + hours away in the sierras so I won’t have to put a beat down on my neighbors LOL!

    • Just me says:

      Red, I’m with you, more paranoid than most. The internet is NOT anonymous OR safe. And now big brother can come on anyone’s property and take anything (including their person) that they want to “redistribute”. I think the first people they’re going to come after when groceries get scarce are preppers and Mormons. When Lint and the others left, someone asked is it that close. My head screamed, Well, yes, that’s Why they left.

      I came late to this party, so I had to take completely drastic measures to catch up. I’m not saying I’m hoarding food or buying arms, but when Lint and the others left I knew it was time to go. Some place less populated, where people know their neighbors, where they live a more self sufficient life style. And for the PTB who monitor these blogs, the only things I’m stocking are hand tools and how to’s. There won’t be anything of value for you to redistribute.

      Having said that, I have lurked here for awhile and will continue. This is where I learned most of what I know now, here and the links you have all so graciously provided and I thank you.

  9. Ed,
    You are right on about not telling anyone. I follow DSYI (Don’t signal your intentions) when it comes to preps. My stock answer is: yes, I am prepared for a hurricane as most others are around here. How many hurricanes we are prepared for is none of their business.

    • JeanneS says:

      Eagle — “How many hurricanes we are prepared for is none of their business.” just killed me with laughing!!! Too priceless. I’m going to chuckle over that all day.

    • Miss Molly says:

      Love this!! Gave me a good chuckle too! =)

    • May I borrow your line? FOL (fell over laughing).

    • Living in South FL using the “hurricane” reply makes perfectly good sense to most sheeple. Why I am armed to the teeth for hurricanes is a whole ‘nother animal! lol

  10. Good article , but its not really telling us anything we dont already know . What surprises me is that a prepper would be so naive to make such an attempt . She needs to move to a different neighborhood now . What we do is not looked on by others as sane , I guess it also depends on to what degree the person is prepping . There are a lot of women that buy loads of things and store them , they are not preppers , they are simply bargin addicts . Its not at all uncommon for a prepper to be alone with his/her way of thinking within their own family , their wife/husband included . Bottom line is keep your mouth shut to all those around you outside your home . There are ways of feeling people out in casual conversation , but again you must be very very careful . Shut up at the slightest hint of negativity …….agree with them that survivalists are wackos .

  11. alikaat says:

    Sadly… I completely agree with your analysis of the situation, Ed. Though I may have to include assistance to some family members who are not prepping (my elderly parents, for example), everyone else who knows about what I carefully conceal in obscure rubbermaid containers in my basement and squirreled away in my mind are other members of my extended prepper family. Non-preppers, or even preppers that I don’t know well, I am not completely open with.

    Some preppers with whom I have made acquaintance over-invest in just one aspect of prepping, and so are not likely to be able to survive in the long run without taking heavy losses. Some (as you describe) overinvest in weaponry, on the philosophy that whatever they need, they will just take (live by the sword, die by the sword. The morally corrupt option). Others pride themselves on their non-violent ways, storing lots and lots of supplies and completely ignore defence (sitting ducks). Others think they will be able to ‘bug-out’ to someplace safe in the event that SHTF, but do not do enough to either safeguard their primary residence or supply their BOL inadequately (little better off than the sheeple in the long run).

    Communication with some of these folk is more risky than others, but communicating with non-preppers is the riskiest of all. If a truly serious SHTF were to occur, you might be put into a position where in order to survive, you have to either choose not to help the non-preppers who come to your door begging for aid (and so taking resources away that your family might need to survive) or just outright put them out of everyone’s misery, and so be forced to become morally corrupt yourself just to safeguard yourself and family. It’s much better just to never allow this to happen by staying out of the spotlight.

    The only way for someone to become a prepper is the come to the realization that it is necessary for their family’s survival on their own. If they are not capable of watching the evening news, read their newspapers, and watch all of the non-subtle hints out there in the world today, they may just not be bright enough/rational enough to be someone I want watching my back in a post-SHTF world. Like sobriety, prepping has to be something you make the choice to do on your own. But everyone who loves you benefits.

    Cat

    • If the fellow prepper is really serious as you are about things…………… he/she wont even ask you about what is in your tubs ……….they will know better .

  12. ED,
    Thank you. This is something that has weighed heavily on our hearts and will the hardest to deal with.
    We made the choice as a family that we would share information with our neighbors and friends because we have that kind of long term relationship with them. We know which neighbors will pass quickly, which ones have the arsenals, and which ones will be leaving very very soon.
    I wish I had a barrel of ammo for everytime I heard, “I have guns, I’ll take what I want.” I tell them that we call folks with that attitude, Fertilizer.
    The folks that say “I’ll just come to your house.”. They are always casual and half joking. I look them straight in the eye and tell them unfortunately, they will not make it to the house. It will be barricaded and impassable. Don’t even try to make it. You are on your own. Period. Figure it out.
    I have a close friend of 23 years who is slowly warming up to the idea of stocking up. She grows, cans and works very hard, but her family is so big, that she doesn’t have near enough to last even a month. She seriously depends on me to feed her family in a crisis, no matter what I say. I love her. She is a lovely person. But, she makes me crazy mad and frustrated sometimes.
    She is my Trojan Horse. So, I need to decide if I want to give up her friendship, prep for her, or just give her the ulitmatum. The horrific Prepper break up. “Hoard some dang food and ammo lady, or I am kicking you to the curb”!
    We have decided to work as a group or small community. Plan B, if the National Guard comes to take us out…. Is to haul ass. Nothing else to do about it. Plan C, is Plan B, but come back later after they leave!

    Staying away from the sheeple is a great idea. I like to call them Zombies though. More dramatic. And gross. Our goal is to keep the Zombies away from us. We have gone to great effort and expense to make that happen. Or not happen.
    If someone was single or just a couple. By all means, bug out, get away and hole up.
    Everyone needs to decide what is best for their situation. I wish you all the best.

  13. pugetsoundsurvivor says:

    great post i agree wih all of you.i work where i buy alot of my preps when i go through the line ivve learned to pick the old east indian gal that doesnt care about anything but getting me checked out sometimes somone asks stupid questions i just say the same”oh im just one of those crazies that thinks zombies are gonna take ove the world” it always shuts em up

  14. JeanneS says:

    I spot preppers the same way I spot concealed handgun carriers — now that I know what to look for, it’s startling how many I spot. Co-workers that I never would have guessed as preppers (because they’re “liberal” or seem too “flighty”) who make off-hand comments about stocking up on buckets for storage — yeah, I know what kind of storage they’re talking about. Or they’ll see my 2nd Amendment postcard pinned in my cubicle and remark about ammo being on sale as the local military surplus store, when I know they weren’t in the military and aren’t into hunting or camping. Old friends I haven’t seen in years but keep in touch with online who post on Facebook about buying a Berkey. Neighbors who fire up the grill in all weather “just in case they need to know how if the power goes out” and who probably aren’t joking about having recipes for raccoon shish-ke-bobs. Casual pals who aren’t Mormons making plans to go to the Mormon cannery and “stock up in case of emergency”. Even people (like many of my relatives), who probably never heard the term “prepper” before that National Geographic show got famous, who’ve been keeping what most people would consider “hoards” of toilet paper and canned goods in reserve for years.

    Just for fun, the next time you’re at a gathering of people who don’t know you’re a prepper, when an appropriate opening in the conversation presents itself, just casually make a remark along the lines of, “You never know what’s coming up,” and see how many people’s heads swivel super-fast to look at you, or how many nod in agreement as they get a very thoughtful look on their faces! I think it’s the Secret Prepper Code Phrase.

    • Liberal preppers are almost a contradiction in terms , like finding a nazi that doesn’t like Hitler , most liberals dont prep because they believe that their savior Obama is going to take care of them .

  15. Just bought my first gun! And as a woman, it made me feel pretty darn good. I have been itching to get a firearm under my belt in my preparation steps, it was the one thing that had really been bugging me. I started small, a Ruger 10/22 more to get me acquainted with actually shooting and practicing, and learning, and I do like rabbit and squirrel! But it’s a step in the right direction. I have plans to deer hunt in the fall, but am going to need a bigger gun! Didn’t want to share with anyone I personally know like the above article, but thought you guys could share in my excitement!

    • You first gun is and exciting thing! Being a girl my mother never allow a gun to be purchased for me. When I did get my first real fire arm (well into my 30s) it felt very empowering! I made sure my girls got some training and if they wanted a gun of their own when they were in their teens. One has taken to it like a “duck to water” the other while she knows how to shoot doesn’t really care for it.

    • charlie (NC) says:

      Newbs,

      That’s a great choice for your first firearm. Unless you intend to shoot deer at distances greater than 80 yards or so, look into a shotgun with the right barrel for deer. It is an effective deer gun with slugs or buck shot but when that barrel is loaded with #4 or even cheap #8 shot it becomes a great home defense weapon. Most folks favor pump shotguns. I personally like autoloaders. I’ve never had a problem with them jamming and they absorb a lot of the recoil energy that a pump, double barrel or single barrel applies to your shoulder.

    • axelsteve says:

      Great news newb. Learn all you can about your 10/22 and you will be better off for it.Start looking for a deer rifle,or shotgun. Some areas you can only shoot deer with shotguns. When I lived on whidby island for example.Deer rifles are also reigienal. For instance a deer rifle ion my area a 243 would probably do fine since the local deer are smaller then a couple of my dogs.Go a couple of zip codes north and a 270 or o6 would be better since the deer are way bigger.Just don`t let anyone sell you something that you do not like or feel uncomfortable with.

    • cosmolined says:

      Newbs:
      Ruger 10-22′s were all of my kids first weapons. I only let them shoot .22 from the age 7 until they were 12. By then they knew to aim and that you don’t kill anything by making noise. Luckily both sons had wood chopping accidents that involved me and their big toes, or they’d be 3rd Generation Airborne. (Not, LOL). Practise, practise, practise. God Bless, Cos

    • Newbs

      Get a M16/M4 type sight for that 10/22 just in case you later want to get a Main Battle Rifle (MBR). They are about $50.00 on the net.

  16. Northbound says:

    I’m laying aside water, food, etc., as my budget allows. Part of my motivation is to reduce our household costs by buying on sale and/or in bulk; part is to prepare my family for a disaster situation.
    Can I eliminate ALL risk to myself and my family? NO. Not even the best prepared family can avoid ALL risk.
    Can I judge accurately how another person will behave in a crisis? Maybe. Maybe not.
    What I CAN do is to build the best run home possible within our circumstances, plan as well as I can for possible disasters, work to stock enough supplies to carry us through, and establish the best network of support around us that I can find.
    My current behavior of choice is to discuss “stocking up a bit when I can” as part of my cost control efforts. No talk about how much I store or that I’m “prepping.”
    I don’t give smart-ass answers to questions (if they come at all) because the bravado of a smart-ass answer simply creates conflict where there doesn’t need to be any and sets in the hearer’s mind a suspicion about what I’m doing. A brief answer that gently turns the conversation elsewhere focuses a lot less attention on my efforts.
    It’s relatively easy to understand whether someone is receptive to prepping. They’ll express genuine interest, not a distain for the activity.
    If you want to advocate for prepping, approach slowly and begin by talking about issues that surround the practice, like the increasing cost of food or how nice it is to have a bit of a pantry to make meals from, or something similar.
    Neither advocating for or avoiding all discussion of prepping will guarantee that my family will be risk free in the event of a disaster.

  17. Good article on a topic I’ve wondered about more than a few times. I guess you could say there will be exceptions to the rule, but it seems to me Ed is right on point here as a general practice.
    You have to look at the very small likelihood your efforts will change the behaviors of your neighbors before an event, compared to the high likelihood those same neighbors, who did not heed you before, will in fact beat a path to your door one minute after an event if they know you are prepped…
    Some preppers retain romantic notions they can defend “them and theirs” and it may come to pass…but I can guarantee you avoiding gun play entirely, if possible, is much to be preferred. This can be more likely if your neighbors do not know you are “loaded.” Knowledge of your situation held by your neighbors can, and will, affect whether they focus on you as an obstacle between them and their survival, or if they focus elsewhere…
    Sun Tzu pointed out centuries ago that “All war is based on deception” Camoflauge comes in more important forms than pixelated foliage…OpSec is an essential element of any coherent prep plan.

  18. The time is well past for trying to wake people up. Now is the time to put up for yourself/family and shut up about it around anyone who is not directly involved- and insure those involved keep their traps shut as well.
    Mentioning your preps, then hearing some fool spout ‘they know where they’re going when TSHTF’ is going to do nothing more than increase your problems and give you one more person to have to guard against. And guard you will: anyone who says they’re going to beat on your door when they’re hungry is going to do exactly that. As well as those who think they have guns enough to take what they want. You’re not doing yourself any favors trying to convince them otherwise.

  19. Loved this, so true. I live in a small valley with only 3 entrance/exits. When they were blocked by flooding, landslides and a washed out bridge, we were landlocked but only for a day. One road was worked on enough to create one lane and the rest took 3 weeks to get back into working order. People didn’t resort to looting but they did buy out the few markets we have as they expected the worst. I believe we had bottled water helicoptered in, since a lot of the water was contaminated due to the flooding. This was a mild wake up call compared to what other things could happen in Southern California.

  20. I’m leaving the crystal ball out of my bug out bag. I’d guess the survival rate of the bunker mentality gold hording gun fanatics will be about the same as the freeze dried tofu eating unicorn milking commune living hippies. I’ll keep my grain camouflaged as chicken food, but keep my eyes open for folks it would do to ride the river with.

    • JedRebel says:

      In your opinion what’s the difference between a “gold hoarding gun fanatic” and a gun owner with a diversified portfolio?

  21. Sadly I have also come to this conclusion. I have decided that it’s just easier if you’re not a target. Whether that target may be that of folks slapping you with the horder label or those just taking a mental note of a possible supply because they are too lazy to do the work.

    It’s gotten to the point that I dont even discuss things with my folks anymore because of their attitude. Well… dad’s anyways. Never mentioned anything to mom. Last time I talked to dad about planting some sugar maple trees on our land. He asked what for and when I told him so we could make some maple surup he followed the sheeple routine and said… it’s easier to just go buy it at the store… and it’s not that expensive.

    So it’s just easier to do my thang all by myself.

  22. recoveringidiot says:

    I work with my neighbors when they need help and sometimes just show up and ask if they are doing OK. I don’t tell them about how I think things are going and how I am preparing/stocking for what I think is going to happen, but if the conversation comes around to how they think the economy or state of the country is going, I will say how it might be a good idea to store a few things and that I need to work on that myself. Mainly I want to have a good relationship with all the folks around me so I can learn who might be a help and who to avoid when or if the time comes. Some of my family are preppers out of necessity and common sense as we live in hurricane country and I have one BiL that thinks a lot like I do and understands that things are not as rosy as the MSM tells us. Even the MSM are spouting off about the troubles with the EU but they never say how we are on the same road just little bit behind them.

  23. Great article Ed. Most of my immediate family know that I am prepping. My sister and her husband think that I am crazy, so I dont talk to them about it anymore. My sister’s comment was “oh, you’re one of those” and then she fell silent. At that point I decided not to continue even trying to make my point. Sometimes you just have to let it be. My stepmother makes fun of me and questions every purchase with “is that another one of your stock up things?” and then giggles. Again, another one I wont talk to about my intentions. The sad thing is, when the SHTF they will be among the first that will arive at our doorstep. What they dont know is that we plan to bug out. We as preppers will try to inform our close family and friends, but some will never change their minds or attitudes. They must be left behind. We have diffuculty prepping for the 2 of us and for those that already live in BOL. I cannot feed the world!
    Other than the above mentioned, and the pack, nobody knows that we prep. That is the way we like it and will continue from here on out. Anyone with half a brain can see what is going on by watching the news and reading the paper. Those that dont prep are taking their own lives in their hands. Those whom tease and ridicule us, they will get what is comming to them. Harsh as that may seem. I am tired of getting the look when I purchase something out of the ordinary or when they see something at my house that may not be the norm for them. Only time will tell. I am just thankful that my pack is there to talk to and learn from. Not all are understanding! Keep prepping my friends.

    • d2 prep says:

      Ammie, I know exactly what you mean. My own dd’s and dw laugh at my “wisdom” all the time. Frankly I am tired of it. I have 2 trusted friends in my circle of preps that I can talk openly with about what we are each doing. Other than that I shut up. However, per my above comment I do want my neighbors to understand about earthquake preparedness, If they don’t do that much, then I can’t help them.

      • Not to mention that some people are so closed minded that no matter what you say, or what evidence you have to back it up you will never change their minds. Why waste my energy? I have better things to do than defend why I am the way I am. In the long run who is the idiot? Not me!! I am glad that you have at least some friends to chat with about your plans and ideas. Makes the whole thing less depressing. My BF said that she is going to start, but has yet to purchase anything!! Who knows if we will remain friends when TSHTF!

        • pugetsoundsurvivor says:

          check out normalcy bias. its a brain condition thats part of human survival mode only in this case it works against the human.it has to be controlled and most of us have overcome it to look past it.it tells people they’ll always have their job even when they suck at it or tells folks in japan to let themselves be surounded by nuke plants and not protest the high level of danger(before fukishima that is)but for some its the only thing holding back parnoid delusions,like for me i struggle with wanting tocash out my 401(K) for preps but that nest egg is my maybe it wont happen prep.just because this are this way things are now doesnt mean this is the way things will be

          • I know that it is a struggle trying to figure out if you should cash in your 401K. We have the same delima. For now we are going to leave it alone. We are prepping with whatever extra we have and hope that things will not go south. We do keep a savings account but that is only for emergencies. We stash cash at the house also, however very little. We are prepping with very limited budget and will just have to make ends meet if things do happen. We wont even get into our savings for auto repairs. We can do without for a couple of weeks. Thanks for the comment.

            • Encourager says:

              I have decided to examine savings, 401Ks, stock, etc and ask myself this question:
              If it hits the fan, and I cannot get that money out of that account, can I afford that? Am I willing to lose it all? If not, cash it in. And do it NOW.
              If I cannot get to my safe deposit box because the bank is closed, temporarily or permanently, can I do without what is in that box? If no, why have ANYTHING in that box!

  24. MD (and Ed) -

    Great article and fantastic advice. I watched the same episode of Doomsday Preppers that Ed referred to and was a bit stunned by this young ladies approach. I will say this though, while I do not engage in prepper type conversations with my neighbors, I have always thought it prudent to get to know them…find out who they are, what they do for a living, what kinds of hobbies they have, and what kinds of experiences and expertise they may possess.

    Like minded people will naturally gravitate towards each other one way or another. Getting to know people in advance (and regularly) is a good idea. You will naturally know who to stay away from.

    I do belong to a small group of like-minded folks and am very comfortable with each and every one of them. I have their backs and I sleep well knowing they have mine as well. We count on each other for knowledge and experience. Each of us brings something very important to the table and allows us to learn and live.

    OPSEC is very important and necessary while at the same time allowing us to remain open minded enough to be able to talk to our friends and neighbors…without sacrificing the safety and security of the group.

    At some point in time, the relationships we have built with our friends and neighbors will hopefully allow us to survive and thrive. Although this may sound arrogant, each of our social and neighborly contacts becomes a potential future resource. Likewise, you never know with whom you are talking…maybe they are practicing OPSEC at the same time.

    In Liberty,
    Zoomie

  25. Correction. We have two outside the family that know that we prep. They are on board and beginning to prep also. My Dad and step-Mom have a Sam’s club membership and take me along sometimes. Why purchase a membership when they can get me in for free? So, I guess I have to put up with the funny looks or get my own membership. I’m a big girl, I can take a look from time to time. Besides I would rather buy a case of tuna than a membership!!lol

  26. WESTPAC says:

    Excellent article and right on the mark!

    Outside of your immediate family, to Hell with the rest of them, because that is exactly what they will be saying to you if the situations were reversed.

    Practice OPSEC with everything concerning your daily life…NOT just with preparations for an All Hazards event. Shred/Burn all receipts & everything with PII, to include mailing addresses. Utilize Bcc on emails. Do Not Blog with anything that can lead to your location specifically (I have been guilty of this in the past). Have a place outside of your immediate living space to entertain visitors (Porch w/small table/chairs) if possible, (learned that in the Philippines) to not allow unwanted “Checking Out” of the inside of your house and especially what you have available for them to steal at a later date. Monitor repair/maintenance men. Keep low cost/throw away weapons by the door (hidden if possible) for immediate use.

    Pick your friends & neighbors…Do Not let them pick you. Never have a cup of sugar on hand for them to borrow.

    Take courses in Antiterrorism, & Yes…All the FEMA online courses, plus many more (DSSA, CBRNE, EM, etc.). Read FREE extension services pubs from colleges. Be self sufficent.

    If where you are living is not conducive to surviving an All Hazards event, then move.

    Become the Grey Man!

  27. There is, no doubt, an unfortunately truth to what you say. It seems you’re damned if you do and damned if you don’t with regards to talking with your neighbors. I would think that the best you can do is follow what’s in your heart. If you heart says go talk to them, then do it.

  28. I get rather frustrated reading these comments. I’ve been through an economic crash SHTF scenario. It wasn’t pleasant but it wasn’t friends and neighbours turning up for our food. It was us being looked down on because we just plain ran out of money for basics. We were middle class and lost our income. We had no money for food or the phone or electricity while others did. Later as the others became victims of the situation they too ran short. The problem was that we were all picked off one at a time. Individually we were considered at fault, to be blamed then to be pitied, or ignored. It was debt that drove the problem, debt and financial unpreparedness. It was the embarrassment of not having stuff put away, but part of the worst was having to pay for the phone in case one of the jobs did become available for a few hours and the employer wanted to contact us. Food was cheap and available. All we needed was a few dollars, though of course we lived on potatoes and carrots and milk which was what was available and cheap in our neighbourhood.

    I think the point I want to make is that it is a long, long road between the SHTF scenario arriving and the point where neighbours think they are entitled to your preps. Before that is the slow personal descent into hell for a majority. That took years for us – 4 years down, and 10 years slow haul back up with lots of social and government rule changing along the way to keep you down.

    So I would want to push getting your personal finances in order – cut up credit cards, be conservative in spending and make sure you have alternative heating and lighting available. Food helps too, but for us it wasn’t such an issue.

  29. worrisome says:

    The family and I made this decision long ago. Tell no one. The conversation came up at a family dinner and at that dinner we all decided that we could be better prepared and so we began. The solemn promise was not to share our knowledge nor supplies with anyone outside the family. We have come a long way in getting ourselves in a much better situation, we live and do all the things we want to do knowing full well we have a food supply; a gun supply; and many other supplies. In this neighborhood where I live, we have come together for the mutual goal of taking care of ourselves from those wishing to use the woods beyond us for nefarious activities, but those same neighbors are clueless about my level of preparedness. As far as they know my family loves fresh vegies and fruits and prefer our own to store bought. They know I am kind of old fashioned and like to “can to give away at Christmas” and I do that. They have no idea of our other talents, what we really own, or where anything is and I think i plan on keeping it that way.

  30. I generally encourage people in my area (Cleveland) to prep for “the next big blizzard”. I tell them to have at least a few weeks worth of food and heat on hand. Baby steps. As far as telling others what I have, no one knows. Not even my wife knows the extent of our preps. It only takes one slip of the tounge to the wrong person to wreck everything. “Three can keep a secret if two of them are dead.”

  31. axelsteve says:

    I do not look like a prepper when shopping. I stagger my shopping so people never see very big shopping carts.I buy most of my ammo at wallmart but I stagger times when employees on duty. I never buy a big ammo purchase at once.Keep it grey.

  32. Kelekona says:

    Perhaps one way to sound out the neighbors is to talk about the local disasters, (I think earthquake, tornado, snowstorm, and hurricane covers most North-American areas,) and see who thinks they have the necessary supplies.

    Inquire about whether they were around for whatever past event hit that town hard enough to be notorious, or make jokes about how people tend to try to appease storm gods with mounds of french toast. (I doubt anyone here tends to wander into stores during pre-storm panics, but I’ve heard that milk, eggs, and bread are the first things to disappear off of store shelves.)

    I think the only “prepper” thing that I put out there is to encourage people to keep powdered milk in their pantries because it can save them from having to run out to the store when they’re supposed to be cooking dinner.

  33. Plant Lady says:

    I agree, to some extent…but none of us will last long without help…lots of help.
    A single family unit – husband, wife and a couple kids (or any other version with less than 10 people) – will find it almost impossible to protect their home and belongings 24/7/365, let alone grow, gather and process food, tend livestock, harvest wood, care for old folks or little kids. There are reasons that all through history (until just recently) folks have lived in extended family units, tribes, villages, etc. – SAFETY first and help when you need it.
    Out in the country we are pretty lucky – we know our neighbors. There aren’t many folks so its easier to at least have an idea of who is who and what they are like. And in my case, both sides of the family have lived in this area 7-8 generations. This gives you an idea over the generations as to a family’s mindset, skillset and resources – Godly, friendly, standoffish, thieves or milking the system for all its worth. You know who the neighborhood mechanic/plumber/woodsman/trapper/EMT, etc. is and who has the big orchard or dairy farm or sugaring bush or shop full of hand tools and the ability to use them.
    City and suburban folks don’t have this long-term knowledge of their neighbors, so it will be much harder for them. Aside from using this God-given period of relative stability and safety to stock up for yourself, you really need to carefully select the folks you want to spend the apocalypse with…otherwise you will find yourself grasping at straws and taking in whoever shows up at your door just to have more warm bodies to share the workload and security needs, or find yourself having to leave your home and beg to be taken into a pre-existing group. This could be far more deadly than than carefully choosing now. And will ensure a more certain future, because you can choose those who can plug the holes in your own personal preps. First off, you aren’t going to survive long without enough land to grow food, livestock feed and wood for cooking and heat – so if you don’t have land, find someone who does. You need a farmer, who knows what to plant when and how to raise, feed, butcher and preserve livestock, plus have the necessary tools to farm, harvest and store the crops. You will need a security force to protect yourselves, your livestock and gardens/orchards/fields…so look for some military types. You need a great cook/nutritionist/food perervation guru and a couple folks to help. You need medical personnel, whether doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, wisewomen, etc. – you may not survive your first illness without one! And you need a Mr. Fixit…one who can fix anything with whatever may be at hand. And you need some breeding age folks to have the kids to take over the workload in time and care for you in your declining years. You get the idea…makes a whole lot more sense to find these folks now and get them on board. It will be nearly impossible to find the right mix that will ensure your suvival after TSHTF!
    Oh, and no offense to anyone, but – if you think your kids don’t know what you have and what plans you may be making, think again. Kids aren’t stupid and they hear everything – usually to repeat it at the worst possible time. Case in point: my grandfather’s three sisters were lifelong kindergarten teachers. They just loved “Show and Tell Day”. Boy, do the kids tell, and tell it all! One little boy brought in his mom’s birth control pills and “told” that “she takes them so she doesn’t end up with any more little bastards like me”. Unless your kids are deaf, dumb and blind…they know. And truly, they should know what you have and how to use it, and especially why they shouldn’t tell anyone. What if TSHTF when they are home alone, or they are somewhere else without you, or you are injured? Think about it…
    I think time is getting short and we need to cautiously find like-minded folks to band together with to better ensure our own immediate survival and the ability to thrive down the road.
    I am only talking to folks I already know well, and using the economy as my talking point get a conversation started in the right direction. Have already invited a few very useful folks to come here to our place and gave them a rundown on what they need to bring if/when they do come.
    You aren’t going to be able to make it on your own unless you have a very large family of useful folks – so worth a little chance in these “safer times” to get your personally selected group arranged now. That way you can pick and choose who you need and who you can live with…and gives you time to figure out any mistakes you may have made and make corrections before it is too late. Like say you find the perfect security guy with a prepping mindset – but then over time you discover his wife is a bipolar nightmare and the kids run wild. Or find your perfect wilderness trained doctor has no intention of working in the fields or at anything else when not doctoring. You would still have time to find someone else better suited to your group.
    And, if you arrange the group (and own the land), you will be defacto leader…and can direct the group in a direction you can be comfortable with. Otherwise you will end up having to join a group (if you are lucky enough to be taken in) where you have no control over any aspect of your life…and may end up a defacto slave or serf just to survive. Or, God forbid, end up in a refugee camp at the mercy of whoever.

  34. SurvivorDan says:

    “I suggest that you keep your preparedness efforts relatively low profile so that your home does not become the “go to” place in your neighborhood for the majority of those who are unprepared. ”

    Good advice, Ed. It’s bad enough that my (and Mrs. S.D.’s) immediate family knows that we are preppers. I am a little loose with my opsec but I played down and laughed off rumors that spread at work (but a former prepping partner) that I prepped. I definitely don’t need my immediate neighbors knowing anything.
    Good reminder for the prepared and excellent warning for the new prepper. The vast majority of that woman’s neighbors will be oblivious to her attempts to educate them. That woman is full of good intentions. And will be to the moment she is overwhelmed and over run by desperate folks. She has doomed her family in the event of TEOTWAWKI. Much like the 2012 Preppers in Mesa Arizona that have zero opsec and a huge profile.
    Lot of folks sent prematurely into in the graveyards of the world had good intentions.

  35. SurvivorDan says:

    Telling folks they should have a week’s food, fuel, water, etc does not constitute letting them know your are a Collapse level prepper. If all the woman in Utah did was to advise her neighbors to prepare at least for a short term emergency, then I think that is fine.

    Personally I don’t like many people (sickie-cynical gene) but I will always offer assistance and advice to those in need. I’m a sucker. But there are limits. Don’t doom your family in the process of being a decent human being. Keep secrets. Opsec. Nuff said.

  36. Texanadian says:

    Howdy all, being reading this blog for some time and this a first comment. During Hurricane Rita’s approach I asked a neighbor if he was prepared for the inevitable power failure and store closer. He stated he had a gallon of gas, bag of chips and a six pack of beer. I foolishly told him I could hold out easily for a month. He said “I know, that’s why I’ll just come to your house.”
    I clearly stated that he had better bring food, more gas or something uselful or he wouldn’t be welcome. He commented, “what are you going to do? Shoot me in the driveway?”
    He didn’t like my response, “I won’t shoot in the driveway, I’ll shoot you in the chest.”
    He went and mooched of someone else until they threw him out.

    Keep your prepping to yourself or a very exclusive circle.

    • That’s one of the reasons I keep my trap shut about what I may or may not be doing. There are too many folks like your neighbor. I do love your comeback to him. Guess he got the message since he went somewhere else.

  37. livinglife says:

    Why be a prepper when you can be a predator? More than one group I have come across strikes me as predators more so than survivialist/preppers.

    Don’t share what you don’t want to share later. By mentioning it you are now the local supermarket for idiots.

  38. I read your site daily.
    The novel you mentioned today is set in my hometown. Thanks for the heads up. I am looking forward to reading it!

    • Encourager says:

      Cindy, the book Shutdown by Flynn now has a sequel to it called Buck: A Survivor of the Shut Down.
      Another good book is Holding Their Own: A Story of Survival by Joe Nobody which now has a sequel called Holding Their Own II: The Independents.

  39. pugetsoundsurvivor says:

    have any of you read The Road? i have always imagined that 5-15 years after tshtf that alot of folks even well prepped people will be scootin around the u.s. hunting other humans for meat. prep for that? reduce the population of sheeple before teotwawki.just sayin if its too bad of a disaster we will have to fight and witness terible things but if we can get people on the same page maybe we wont have to do us v. them.maybe we can achieve a harmonius restructure,but not until those with the propensity for rape and murder (like we saw in the arena at new orleans) are culled

  40. In any prolonged event there will be a need for community in the aftermath. Everyone’s preps will eventually be depleated and you will need the assistance of others. I have been explaining o people that a SHTF could be the loss of a job, I talk about just storing a few items, give them a list and tell them about some mild information. They will get it or they won’t, but if you are only suggesting they store a week to months worth and male it seem that you have only done that then you have hopefully enlightened someone but not seriously compromised your OPSEC.

  41. I like putting everything on my facebook page

  42. Virtual TWiT says:

    I recently moved to a more rural situation. One of the greatest advantages to that move is that I have only told a very few people exactly where I live now and it is a big comfort. Too many people knew where I lived on top of how well supplied I am.
    I can only do so much and I do get tired of people not listening.
    I also have some dear friends who are thinking they can survive anything, but in 20 years have not so much as filled one jug of water, and they have an electrically pumped 250 foot deep well no less. I would say something to them about at the very least turning a small can into a well-capable dipper and getting several thousand feet of nylon string, but it would do no good.
    Other situations aren’t much better. They are far more interested in their Kindle tablets and video games. If a remote control dies they don’t have a spare set of batteries. …and they probably don’t own a working portable radio despite my having bought them 3. The kids like to take them outside, break off the antennas and leave them out in the rain for a week.

    I know these people are going to be the very first people on my doorstep about a week into any disaster. They are my best friends, but the answer will be no. And it alarms me that they have said that they will take what they need to survive.

    Matthew 25:8-13

  43. Interesting write up with some very good points. It would be in everyone’s best interest if the community is prepared, but so many people just don’t care. I suppose the best of both worlds is moving to a place in which preparedness is common, but that’s easier said than done.

  44. Encourager says:

    We have been looking for like minded people for a long time. Scratch anyone in our immediate neighborhood – won’t even bring the subject up to any of them. The only ones we trusted are auctioning off the farm and moving to AZ.
    Will be attending a new “prepping group” in a nearby town 6/2. Don’t think I will even take my ID into the building. At least they are meeting at a library. Just want to see where everyone who comes is at – rank beginner, got a handle on it, able to share/teach. They advertised on Michigan Preppers, a part of a larger national group.

  45. I have to say, IMHO, that the post apocalyptic writings related to TEOTWAWKI are pure speculation, since an impact of this magnitude has yet to fall upon us. Sure there have been smaller scale versions to give a cursory view of what “might occur”, and for those limited people impacted, I am sorry to hear of your hardships endured, and loses experienced. “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” Regardless, no one can tell any of us with any authority what will be experienced. I would consider all of these type ‘stories’ to be just that, a story. While some are well written, and prompt one to think about their own situation, and what they could do, it is still fiction in my eyes.

    I believe that there are many people out their “prepping” and keeping their mouths shut on the matter except for discussions with their very closest adult family members and friends… kids are like parrots and can unknowingly say something that could spark an inquiring mind. Call it OPSEC, privacy, smart, whatever, the less ‘other’ people know about your preparations the better. If you want to stockpile five years of food and water, good for you; I hope it is in some secure fallout shelter with bombproof doors behind a hidden wall so you can keep it if any “zombies” come scrounging through your neighborhood. Then all you need to learn is how to hide in plain sight and not be followed to your safe zone after returning from exploring and learning about whatever resemblance of civilization remains.

    Myself, I have no firearms, and never needed one; only a good traditional recurve bow and a couple dozen good arrows that I have successfully hunted with for decades. My Gregory Palisades BOB pack has the same items that are in my Gregory Z35 backpacking/camping pack, just larger to carry a few more layers to protect against prolonged exposure and some additional tools / containers I would need for an extended camp as compared to a week or two-week camp during hunting season.

    Being that the kids are grown and on their own and now it is just myself to look after, I have no problem leaving any apartment complex behind; take what I must have to survive and abandon in place any other material item that is irrelevant. Been there, done that a couple of times before, don’t want to go back; but if I had to, I certainly could. On foot, I could be well under cover following back roads and paths in a few hours, so enough food and water to last 48 hours would be a good start, anything extra is icing on the cake.

    My main concern about ‘living off the land’ is all the idiots that try it and have no clue what they are doing, then they burn down whatever forest coverage and hunting area that ‘could’ be used by those that know how to take care of the land, being able to live stealthily and avoid most of the chaos that will “most likely” (based on other smaller catastrophes) be experienced.

    In the end, he who dies with the most supplies will still die. IMHO, the most important factor that everyone should consider is this… when your time comes, regardless if it is a natural occurrence, or by some catastrophic event, or a “zombie attack”, just make sure you are at peace with yourself and with those important to you. Is anything beyond that important?