This is a guest post by TNFarmer and entry for our non-fiction writing contest.
We here on this blog talk and read a lot about all kinds of prepping and survivalist situations which are all interesting, compelling and thought provoking. I am going to mention some things in this brief article that some may have not thought about. Part of the items I will mention used to be called “unmentionables”.
I would recommend that everyone think about stocking up on underwear. Yes, the unmentioned items that we hardly even think about. We all purchase underwear at some point, but I would like to change your thinking about them. I recommend purchasing a year’s worth of underwear. First of all, ladies like pretty underwear, and men like those things also. But, are they practical? Bikini or French cut underwear can be delightful, but in a survival situation they are not really what is needed.
I recommend the ladies purchase plain ol’ cotton briefs that sit at the waist and are cut all the way down to the bottom of the butt. The warmest underpants are cotton and silk, but silk is plenty expensive for most of us. Cotton crotch underpants are also much more healthy, especially for people prone to yeast infections. Sorry I had to mention that, but it’s a fact.
Cotton underwear tends to shrink when washed a bit so I recommend getting one size larger than usual to account for shrinkage. Jockey brand is a good brand and they have a discount store on Ebay. They often have specials like three packages of three for the price of two or some other special. You can’t find them on Ebay, you can find specials at their online store http://www.jockey.com/store
Men also need to stock up on their favorite brand of underwear, and like the ladies, no bikini or low waist types. Just regular classic briefs like your mother bought for you when you were a boy. If you wear boxers, the same goes for them but think cotton and not polyester or other blends if you can find them. Think about chopping wood in bikini type briefs and you’ll get the picture. You want comfort and durability.
Now, socks. Both men and women should buy socks that are all cotton in one color to help with matching socks in the laundry. Here again, buy ribbed crew socks that reach over the ankle with the ribbing reaching part way up the calf. Little half socks that are so popular today are just not practical while wearing boots or sneakers when working outside in all types of weather. If you are not allergic, wool socks are the best for winter wear as they are warm even when wet. Silk socks are also warm, but expensive. Women don’t bother to purchase sheer stockings in a survival situation. You will rarely, if ever, get dressed up to need them. Leggings would be a good thing to have for winter wear as long as they are warm and not just attractive.
Bras…think about giving them up. It is healthier to go without a bra than with a bra, in my opinion. Unless you have a situation where you absolutely need to wear a bra for health reasons, do without. They are uncomfortable and troublesome, hot and binding. In a survival situation you will most likely lose weight so those pretty lacy things will no longer fit anyway. Just forget about them and save the money for more important items. Who is going to see you anyway? You will not be going to work in your power suit and high heels; you will be working in the garden or canning food in a hot kitchen or over a boiling pot of water outside. Don’t forget, there will most likely be no air-conditioning in your location.
Lastly, laundry. Have you thought about how will you do laundry? Your washer and dryer probably won’t be working. I recommend getting a washboard to scrub dirty clothes in a large tub of water, or you can use a plunger to agitate the clothes. I have used an old fashioned washboard and they work well.
Then, you will need a clothesline. Please don’t think about getting some rope and tying it between two trees and think that you can hang clothes efficiently. The line will sag and your clothes will eventually drag on the ground. I have been using a pulley system for years and I think it is the best solution for drying clothes outside. You can find a complete system at http://non-electric.lehmans.com/search#w=clothesline pulley
Amazon.com also has all the laundry items mentioned, but please don’t buy plastic pulleys or spreaders. They will eventually break and then you are stuck without them. Buy the all metal ones. Get set up now with an outdoor clothesline if you are planning to hunker down. Sheets smell so much better after drying outside in the sun than they will ever do in a dryer.
I don’t necessarily like using the metal clothesline sold at Lehman’s as I use cotton clothesline that can be purchased at Lowes. It does stretch over time, but I use a clothesline tightener, which works very well.
I also use spreaders so that the laundry does not drag on the ground. This works well for me because I am quite short. I can hang a pair of jeans on the bottom line and then hang a spacer to bring the bottom line up close to the upper line. Also, the pulley system makes it easy to hang clothes from one spot and the line moves along the pulleys as you hang the clothes. A willow basket comes in handy also for transporting the wet clothes and as a vessel to hold the folded, dry clothes.
Don’t forget the clothespins!
Prizes for this round in our non fiction writing contest include…
- First place winner will receive – Two (2) Just In Case… Classic Assortment Survival Food Buckets courtesy of LPC Survival, a $150 gift certificate for Remington ammunition courtesy of LuckyGunner, aWonder Junior Deluxe grain mill courtesy of Kitchen Neads, a one year subscription to the Personal VPN service courtesy of unspyable and a Survival Puck courtesy of Innovation Industries, LLC.
- Second place winner will receive – One case of Future Essentials Canned Organic Green Costa Rican Monte Crisol Coffee courtesy of Campingsurvival.com and Solo Stove and Solo Pot Courtesy of EmergencyFoodWarehouse.com.
- Third place winner will receive – a copy of my book ”31 Days to Survival: A Complete Plan for Emergency Preparedness“ courtesy of TheSurvivalistBlog.net, a copy of “The Survival Medicine Handbook” courtesy of www.doomandbloom.net and a Wolf Pack Coffee Mug Jumbo Mug courtesy of Horton Design.
Be sure to read the rules before entering… This contest will end on January 15 2014