6 reasons Why Even Skeptics Should Prepare

For every prepper out there, there are dozens more who are skeptics.  Some of these people raise an eyebrow when they hear about storing food or packing Bug Out Bags, while others are loud in their ridicule.

Here are 6 irrefutable reasons

1. Unemployment can happen to anyone.  Incredibly, the weekly number of new applications for unemployment hasn’t dipped Unemployment below 400,000 in months.  Anyone with a pair of eyes can look around and see restaurants and businesses that have closed down, and you can check your own state’s unemployment rate here. Now, the average length of time a person will be out of work is more than nine months.   Very few people are completely immune to long-term unemployment and the economic devastation it brings.  It just makes sense to have a few week’s worth of groceries and some extra supplies on hand.

2. More and more financial experts are predicting an unavoidable economic Armageddon. Okay, so Gerald Celente can sound a little bit hysterical at times, but the chorus of doomsayers is getting louder and harder to ignore.  Regardless of what you may think of Timothy Geithner, when the Secretary of the Treasury says of our future, “It’s going to feel very hard, harder than anything they’ve experienced in their lifetime now, for a long time to come,” that’s hard to ignore.  Why not take a few hundred dollars, if you have them, and buy silver coins?  Why not do everything you can to get out of debt and making saving money a priority?  The healthier you are, financially, the less of a hit you’ll take if all these experts prove to be true.

3. The number and size of natural disasters seems to be increasing.  At first, I thought it was my imagination, but the number ofEmergency Preparedness for Hurricanes natural disasters has been increasing.  It’s crazy to not assess your own vulnerability and take some precautions, just in case.

4. Think about your loved ones and those who depend on you.  Okay, so maybe you’re embarrassed at the thought of neighbors seeing boxes of freeze-dried food arriving at your house.  But unless you’re an orphaned, never-married virgin hermit, there are people who love you and, likely, some who depend on you to make smart decisions that will keep them safe and cared for.

5. You’re not sixteen anymore.  There was a time when living by the seat of your pants was the only way to live.  You could always find enough spare change under the seats of your ’72 Mustang to pay for a burger and fries or a few gallons of gas.  Life has changed, and it’s time to take a hard look at the future, your future.  If you’re counting on Social Security to see you through your ‘golden years’, you’re already screwed.  Inflation has arrived here in America, prices of food are rising each month.  If you’re ignoring the signs around you, well, maybe you still have the judgment of a sixteen year-old.  Sad, really.

6. Don’t worry.  You won’t look stupid.  Today’s preparedness is nothing like the crazy days of Y2K.  Today’s preppers take a Freeze Dried Foodlonger view of the future.  We could experience a long slide downward, one day realizing, “I don’t live in a first-world country anymore,” or a collapse could come suddenly and violently, days or years from now.  If you’re prepared for those scenarios, and others, you’ll look like a genius when you pull out that bag of pre-1965 dimes and quarters and your family has a year’s worth of food stored, along with a thriving garden in the backyard.

Video – Watch how Lisa Bedford, The Survival Mom prepares her family (click here – starts around 2:25)

Photos by:
Joel Pett (Lexington Hearld-Leader)
Linda & Clark

Written by Joel Jefferson

Joel is one of the original founders of SurvivalCache.com. After college, he joined the USMC where he served as an (0302) Marine Infantry Officer. Joel is an avid outdoorsman and spends much of his free time in the mountains. Joel’s hobby is researching survival gear & weapons as well as prepping. Read his full interview here. Read more of Joel's articles.

71 thoughts on “6 reasons Why Even Skeptics Should Prepare”

  1. Good article. It is quite obvious that soon we will need it someday soon. Right now a hurricane is about to hit and there have been several earthquakes. I live on the west coast so it doesn't affect me but if people don't think something will happen soon they need to open their eyes. And if you believe in god it has been prophesied that in the last days wheat will be worth it's weight in gold. I'm glad my family has a large food storage supply. Oh and by the way I'm not sixteen I'm barely 14.

  2. I like the argument but the national employment rate is a much better statistic than the unemployment statistic… We are at 58.1% employment. Almost every other person is out of work. In the bubble states it’s worse. This is also a male lead unemployment period.
    Although I don’t think we need to worry about Armageddon (you will not know the time) the most likely scenario for our systems to collapse are natural disasters. I don’t think everyone needs to have a years worth of supplies underground but a months worth is relatively easy to maintain. I know a family that lived off of their 6 month food supply when the husband got laid off. He found work just as they were running out of food.
    Have you rehearsed bugging out? If not you don’t know how well your plans will work. Should you have to bug out because your neighborhood is on fire or your house collapsed you may need to spend some time living off whatever you can take with you. Where will you go? Relatives house? Cabin in the woods? Out into the middle of nowhere? How much stuff can you haul with you? Survival mom is a pro… She rehearses.

    • Exactly! rehearse, rehearse and rehearse again, even if it just in your mind. Know how you are going to execute your plan in as many different scenarios you can imagine.

    • I disagree, I watched the whole show and it makes me feel that my family is not as prepared as we should be. The first guy is a kook, I will give you that. The rest seem pretty normal.

  3. I totally appreciate the article. I'm nowhere near as prepared as the people in the video, but I'm far more prepared than my neighbors! The thing to remember is we all have to work within our means. There's no way I'm digging a hole in my backyard and starting a fishfarm, not only because I have neither the time nor the $ to do it, but I'd never be able to maintain something like that. But I do have a garden, stockpiles of long term food and emergency supplies and weapons/ammo. We add to that cache every month. Instead of spending $60 for dinner out, we use that money for supplies. Little steps every month!

  4. Very good artilce and straight to the point. I'm glad somebody wrote something like this for EVERYONE. When my wife has asked me what TEOTWAWKI and BOB stand for she rolls her eyes…and I can see why. Situations might not always be like a movie..massive war…nuclear holocaust…zombies…total stone age living..etc( though it could happen) But there will always be times of great hardship, look at history. Storms are getting much worse, economies are in the dumps right now, terrorism is everywhere, do i need to keep listing?? Everybody should think about their well being as well as their family and have some kind of plan in order. There is nothing "kooky" about storing food and supplies for an emergency. However, if you are already boarding up your windows and setting dead fall traps in your backyard even I might raise an eyebrow.

    • Tinderwolf,
      One of my big selling points to a friend's wife was that although I expected no major astronomical disaster on 21 December 2012, I DID expect the sheeple to panic, clean out stores, shut down commerce and, in general, make life miserable by hording everything from aspirin to powdered milk to candy. If you buy stuff now, you may be a crazy prepper but you are within the law. If you stock up when shortages start you are a hoarder and probably breaking some law. Zombies may be a bad movie nightmare but stripped store shelves are a real time nightmare in the northeast as I write this. You are correct, I talk about black swans and TSHTF a lot more often that TEOTWAWKI. It is easier for the unsure to accept a freak snow storm or hurricane in NYC than a Carrington event. Preparing for one, can lead to preparing for the other over time.

      • Very true Capt. You metioned it earlier in one of your posts or articles and I completly agree, when events happen people then go out to get supplies and add to the panic, IDIOTS! Even during regular season storms and snow, something as simple as waiting until hours before a big ice storm I see people running to the store to get ice melt and salt. Really?? I know most people don't want to spend the extra money on having a supply of things because they might not need it, but main staple things that you are going to use need to be in your supply. Salt for the winter, gas, etc. I always laugh when the news plays and it shows people waiting in line at the store trying to buy something for the IMPENDING DOOMSDAY STORM OF THE CENTURY, cause i'm at home sipping my coffee knowing that there are supplies at hand that were bought months ago. I enjoy our little dialouge bart.

        • Oh man, that is dead on! You should see folks in NE Texas when the weather man mentions sleet, freezing rain, or SNOW. Ha, there won't be a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread on the selves in hours! Buying gas like crazy, long lines at the Wally World, and even AutoZone. I love it when you and Cap'n Bart engage in cyber conversation!

        • Here in Alabama we get the same thing. Folks cleaning out grocery stores everytime the weather man says that four letter "s" word, snow. The longest period of being snowed in Ive experienced in thirty-five years was for five days. It amuses me that people who say prepping is a bunch of paranoid crazies are the same people who act as if the world is going to stop till spring arrives. Who then is really the crazy paranoid?

  5. Well, obviously there was an earthquake on the east coast yesterday (8/23/11) and while I'm nowhere really near the epicenter, as I'm sure you've read by now it was felt for a long ways up and down the coast.
    I'm in NYC, specifically Brooklyn. I live on the 20th floor of a 30 story building. (No, CaptBart, no one lives on an 84th floor.) The building I'm in is around 100 years old, concrete and steel i-beam construction with a brick exterior.
    I felt the quake and within 5 seconds was executing my initial evacuation plan.
    I also have 2 young children (5 and 3) at home.
    By the time I had actually grabbed everything and got out the apartment door, the shaking was over, but I continued with the plan anyways. Who knows, perhaps the building had sustained structural damage somewhere and was teetering on collapse? And while it was still shaking, at least I was doing SOMETHING… what if the shaking continued to increase?

    I won't go into extensive details, at least not right now, but even though I have bags at the ready, I still have holes in how they are stocked.. nothing really too major. Something that was on my mind was that I don't have copies of important documents.
    Still, it felt good to know that with my over-abundance of caution, I wouldn't have to return home immediately. I was the ONLY person I saw who was walking around "prepped." Sure, it wasn't a full-on disaster, but as I was leaving (I took the stairs down.. it took a while carrying the little one AND the bags) there were other residents (with children) coming IN and taking the elevator.
    I felt a little silly carrying all my stuff when the immediate danger was pretty obviously over, but isn't that what being a survivor is all about?

    In the end, I'm able to look at this as a full-dress rehearsal and now know better which preps I need to complete and just what it feels like to get out with my BOB(s) (kids need bags, too, and I have to do most of the carrying) and also how my kids will react when I tell them, "Put your shoes on, no questions, do exactly as I say, NOW!" Really, they were great. Now, if I could only get them to listen ALL THE TIME! 🙂

    • Great execution of your plan! In my opinion it is very silly that other people would be going into a building and actually taking the elevator after something like that! Don't worry about what other people are thinking, you were doing what you needed to to keep you and your family safe, if others want to scuff in arrogance and walk into a building and take the elevator after a quake, let them. They will figure it when the stell box fails and they get stuck in a 5×5 space for who knows how long. Important docurments are a must, but don't feel bad I haven't got all that stuff around either. If your bag has "holes" in it at least you have something and have a plan….you are way ahead of the game

      • Thanks for your support. You're right, stick to the plan. It's pretty easy to panic and make snap decisions. Of course you have to adjust, but I now realize that those adjustments need to be thought out in advance. It was pretty damn spooky being this high up and knowing that earthquakes "don't" happen here, and knowing that if they do it could be quite catastrophic.
        For example. We have one of those two kid strollers still. Not the double-wide kind, but one where one kid can sit in front and other sit/stand in the back (brand name Joovy). Plan A is to take the stroller so the kids have somewhere to sit/sleep and if they want to walk, it makes a decent wheelbarrow. The reality is that without the elevator, that thing ain't goin' nowhere, especially with having to carry all the bags myself. MAYBE if my wife was here, but she wasn't. Plan B was to bring along a smaller, umbrella stroller. That, too, didn't make the cut. So, I had to adjust and make up plan C, for "Carry".
        I think the "looking silly" thing is something all preppers will go through. "Oh, why are you stocking 6 months of food/water/etc?" But we're willing to accept that because we won't be looking so silly while surviving (in it's myriad of forms) on our preparations.

        • Personally I don't see how people live that far up in buildings…I wouldn't like it! Being able to take that stroller would be a great asset but luggin it down 30 levels of stairs would be difficult…the only idea that i would have for it would be that when it is in its complete folded up position try tying some sort of thick plastic ( like those cheap roll up snow sleds) on the under side of it so that you could slide it down the stairs and pull it with a rope., might be too akward no matter what you do if you only have yourself carrying everything though. You could always see if there is somewhere on the ground floor you could store an extra stroller. It definitly makes it more interesting with kids, have some of my own and there is definitly more planning involved! keep on going!

          • Well, the view is awesome. Plus, it's a lot quieter up here in the clouds.
            Not a bad idea with the sled, it would probably work, but space is at a premium. Just hoping the next reason to bug out will wait until they can walk farther and carry their own bags.

    • Jerry,
      You're lucky – you've had a dry run. Looks like Hurricane Irene may give you a real run. You guys take care. There is nothing like the "real thing" to point out gaps in our preps. I commend you for continuing the plan. Some things, once they are started should be taken to completion, regardless of other factors. In the world of flying, once you take a "missed" on an approach, you NEVER change your mind! It is amazing how often a pilot decides he can't make the landing, begins a missed approach, then decides he can make it and wrecks the airplane. There is a wisdom that says once you've pulled the trigger on your emergency plans, you complete the plans. You are quite correct, in a quake the aftershocks can be worse than the main event. Now you know what it takes to get down and out of your building; that is valuable knowledge. It is also true that many times the start of a SHTF event can be very innocent looking.

      One of the things any accident investigator knows about is the chain of events. It is rarely a BIG thing that causes an accident – it is the 15th little thing that finally seals your fate. If the chain is broken anywhere along the line, the accident doesn't happen. Same with disasters – you get out when things don't "FEEL" right and you're not there when TSHTF. You did very well indeed.

      OK, I apologize for the 84th floor dig. I confess to being ignorant of the general living accommodations in NYC. I've only flown over the place so I obviously should not have made snide remarks about living high up.

      • I'm expecting/hoping Irene will be a bug-IN situation. Stocking up on water and food (not that I don't already have some, but it's much more pleasant to subsist on fresh food than cans and rations, etc.
        It's so much easier when you "know" it's coming. You can prepare mentally as well as getting everything else in place.
        Like charging batteries, buying extra food/water/toiletries, filling the car with gas, etc, etc.
        In the unlikely scenario that I have to bug-out, well, it'll be a wet one.
        No offense taken, but I'll probably rib you about it when the easy opportunity arises. 🙂

        • I'd expect nothing less from my friends; thanks.

          Sounds like you are doing the right things to get ready. I rode out Ike in Houston. My only additional recommendation is to make sure you have a way to get to a "wind proof" spot (maybe a fire-stair well). With all the debris blowing around, it is fairly easy to lose a window. Houston lost a bunch of them from the high rises downtown. Once the blow really hits you can't go outside for fear of blowing debris – a wind chime at 120 mph is lethal. It will also take out a window. If you lose a window, the wind gets into the dwelling and then the only safe place is a windowless room, preferably re-enforced like a stair well. Other windows blow out and contribute to the debris field. If you are above the storm surge, the blowing debris can kill you. Also be prepared for a noise like you've never heard before unless you've ridden out a big storm in the past. The beasts seem alive while you're in them.
          You and yours will be in my prayers this weekend. Keep dry and let us know how it goes when you can.

        • From the news it looks like Irene weaken a bunch before hitting your area. When you can, let us know you and yours are OK. I think we would like to hear of your experience, what worked, what didn't work, any surprises and what you'd do different next time.
          Best of luck, sir.

          • Thank your for your thoughts and I'd be happy to share.
            I'll try not to get too elaborate.

            Having recently dealt with the earthquake, I still had the BOBs out because I had been keeping track of the weather, so I knew they were in decent order (no, I still hadn't filled in the holes mentioned above). This wasn't likely to be a TEOTWAWKI event so I wasn't too worried.
            The lesson from this is, check your BOB periodically. I tend to go through mine about every 6 months… a good time is when you change the clocks and batteries in the smoke detectors. This way you can remember just what it is you have in there, rotate food/water, take out things you realize you won't need, add new/better stuff.

            Like most of you, I already have a BOB ready (for each person in the family) and a plan for bugging-out or bugging-in. But which would it be. We knew the hurricane was coming, but just where would it hit and how powerful would it be? We decided to keep track of the news and make a decision closer to the event. Based on the information we chose to shelter-in-place.
            The lesson is, make a decision and stick with it. Don't waffle about should I stay or should I go. If you think you can stay, then stay and get your house in order. If you think you have to go (which IS A HARD DECISION TO MAKE… to leave your home), then go and don't look back (well, hopefully you'll be able to return at some point).

            Knowing that we had time to make the final decision (we gave ourselves a deadline of EOD-ish Friday) and knowing that all my preps were done, I was relaxed. I even took the kids to Coney Island. Crazy, right? I filled the gas tank on the way, it was only 1/2 empty anyhow. The car is reasonably stocked, too, and really only a part of the bug-out plan in the event that it is at the ready (generally kept in an indoor, attendant parking garage about a 12 minute walk from home). The kids had a great time on the amusement park rides. I was stopped by a reporter for the AP who couldn't get anyone to be alarmed about the impending storm. Well, that's NYers for ya. I told her, I read SurvivalCache.com. I'm prepared for anything. (No, I didn't really… but I also couldn't muster up a feeling of dread.) I did say, "People are at the beach. You're not supposed to bring your troubles to the beach."
            The kids were playing in the sand right at the waters' edge when my wife called to say that there were mandatory evacuations for low-lying areas, including Coney Island and areas near our apartment (however, our building is up on a hill water would only lap at the curb if the Statue Of Liberty was submerged to her armpits. "Where are you right now anyways? What? Coney Island? Maybe you should start heading home." "Oh, sure, ok, we'll start heading back in a few minutes. Bye"
            Lesson: If your preps are done, then relax. Save your energy and keep your stress levels down. You can't maintain a high stress level for an extended period and you're going to need your energy to deal with the emergency when it comes.

            We also keep the apartment fairly well stocked with food/water/supplies. I also keep a decent amount of cash on-hand. There are other things I do for prepping but they don't really apply in this scenario so let's leave them out for now. Saturday morning we took the kids out for a walk as we knew we'd be stuck indoors for a while. We stopped into a drugstore to get some non-disaster-related items and the place was a madhouse. I also sorta wanted to see the people who hadn't prepped scrounging around. Actually, it must have recently been a madhouse as it was pretty much picked clean of your typical emergency supplies. No bottled water, no batteries, no TP. My wife bumped into a former co-worker who was holding a large, scented candle. She said, "I don't really know what to get. I got this [holds up candle]. I'm all set, right? They don't have any flashlights left." I couldn't help myself but to say incredulously, "You don't have a flashlight?!?!?" My wife apologized for her that she was young and just moved to the neighborhood. From where I sit right now at my desk, I have three flashlights within arms' reach. Maybe four. In the entire apartment, I probably have more than 20 various battery operated modes of illumination. This was one of the few times I didn't have my EDC with me (just a quick jaunt to the store after all) or I would have given her the flashlight I have in there. Which, BTW, is not a fancy Surefire or anything like that at all. I got it at IKEA. I think it's supposed to be a battery operated reading light that you clip to your book… like who even reads books anymore? It uses 1 AAA, has 3 LEDs, twists on/off and has a detachable clothes-pin-esque spring clip. I left it on overnight once and still used it the next day just fine (on an Eneloop FYI). I think it was $1.49. I got a bunch of them. Not a real tight beam, but I prefer that it floods an area with light. It's great. I think it's called Egelsby (not on their website either). But I digress…

      • I wanted to comment on the "15th little thing."
        Bear with me, I'll make it as quick as I can.
        Last weekend we drove to visit friends in their new apartment. We stayed a little while and then were off to visit relatives on Staten Island. Just before leaving the hostess got really chatty with me while my wife went out to the car with the kids. I don't know why exactly she kept on talking and talking, but I obliged her, trying not to be rude while trying to back my way out the door.
        While getting the kids in the car my wife reminded me that I had left something inside so I went back to get it, fumbling with the hi-tech doorbell buzzer system.
        Back to the car and a quick stop at the nearby McD for some coffee (hostess broke her fancy schmancy espresso machine during the visit). Oh, oops, I forgot to go to McD while navigating the twists and turns to the freeway entrance. Turn around, hit the drive-thru, miss a light, ok, now back on course.
        Traffic is ok, cruising right along. Get over the Verazanno Narrows Bridge and to the toll plaza. Usually I stick to the far left lanes for EZ-Pass, but I know I will be exiting soon, so go for one of the EZ-Pass lanes more on the right…. I'll choose,,,, this one,,, this line looks shorter somehow. How come that white car isn't moving through the toll? What? Now a toll cop is at the driver's door talking to them. Oh great. Always choose the wrong lane, just like at the grocery store.
        Switch lanes crossing over the big white painted lane divider area. Yay, through the toll. Now on to see the in-laws… double-yay! 😉
        Weird, Low Tire Pressure Alert just came on.
        Thump thump thump thump….
        Pull over… Rear left tire completely flat.
        Take off the tire, nice big chunk of metal lodged in the tread. "Well, here's your problem…"

        See it?
        Time wasted with last minute chit-chat. Time wasted retrieving forgotten items. Fiddling with the buzzer. Going to McDonald's, going the wrong way to McDonald's. Choosing the wrong lane, deciding to switch lanes.
        Change any one of those little things, especially the time-wasters, and I'm ahead of that white car getting stopped at the toll booth and I don't have to change lanes thru the minefield of tire-popping road debris.

        Fortunately, I know how to change a tire, although it is really not fun to be changing a tire on the side of a busy freeway with about 3 1/2 feet between your car and the traffic.
        At least it was also daytime, dry and not freezing. It would have been so much worse in the rain, in winter, at night.

        • You understand, sir. The Captain of the Concorde that crashed in Paris delayed his takeoff for two hours to fix a mechanical problem that, while not critical, would have made his plane a little safer landing in NY. Because of that delay, the DC-10 took off in front of him instead of after him. It was a piece of metal from that DC-10 that caused the crash. So, by improving the safety of his craft, the Captain caused the deaths of all on board. As Ernie Gann wrote, "Fate is the Hunter". Thank you for sharing your experience.

  6. It doesn't have to be an end of the world, Charlton Heston disaster movie scenario to ruin your day. It could be as simple as getting lost in your car, or having a mechanical breakdown in the middle of nowhere. If you have made reasonable preparations ahead of time and keep the right sorts of equipment in your car, no problem. If you don't and the weather is nasty you could find yourself struggling just to stay alive.

  7. I just watched the video and didn't find much wrong with it. The only part I didn't agree with and didn't like was how the mom said she didn't do anything else other than prep. Really? What's the point of prepping if you have nohting outside of it? Its good to prepared but you got to remember to have a life as well. As preppers We like to ask the question "what will we do when that day comes?" But sometimes you have to ask youself "what will we do if that day doesn't come?" If that day never really comes in your lifetime are you going to be happy with the life you lived if all you did was prep? We prep to stay alive in situations but we have to remember to keep living now and after the scenario.

    • Tinder, the producer edited my words in that segment, and it appears that's how we really live! Only problem, is that what I actually said was, "I can understand how some people might think…this is our only focus in life…" What a difference it makes when you know the whole sentence, huh? I have no idea why the producer wanted to present us as an extreme case, when he saw for himself that we really are very ordinary and live busy, balanced lives. When I saw what they had done with my words, I was appalled, to put it nicely.

      • There is always editing on these things, which I realize. They have to make it look and sound more interesting than it might other wise be for it to be on tv. I do commend you for getting your kids involved in other activities than just being zoned out on media devices. I will say that my comment still stand thought ( even though it doesn't completly apply to you) just so that other keep in mind not to go too far. There is a fine line between being prepared and being a "kook" the only difference is not "kook" do absolutely nothing but prep. while the rest of us continue to enjoy life and prep at the same time. Again sorry if my comment seemed like an attack on you, it wasn't, just trying to keep all of us with at least one foot on the ground.

        • Also wanted to point out one quick thing I caught from watching the video. You said you probably wouldn't buy out because there are only four major roads out of Phonex…It is a disadvantage you are surrounded by dessert. However, in a true bug out situation, traffic is not going to stop me and roads no longer have any rules or laws. You ride the shoulder or go off road, though people's yards and parking lots. This is one reason I will NEVER be without a vehicle that has four wheel drive. I do understand that in larger cities there really is no other way due to the way roads and interstates and ramps are built that you might not be able to get around it but its just a suggesstion.

      • Lisa,
        From your other writings I knew the show was, had to be, edited. I was surprised that it was as even handed as it was actually. Usually an attempt is made to make us look like nut cases. That may be changing now that even the government is recommending we prep. That fact causes me some alarm actually. How scared do they have to be to admit they can't take care of the sheeple? For most of us, prepping is a life style not some goal to be obtained. Being prepared can be fun and result in a sense of satisfaction. Knowing that my family is taken care of is a lot better to me than depending on the government to do my work for me.

        • Wait til you see the next prepper show coming up on TLC this Sunday. I saw a preview and I don't know if they could have picked an odder assortment of people if they had tried, which of course, they did!

          • I'll look for it … it is easy to poke fun at "strange" people. By doing so you no longer have to consider their point of view. It'll be tough if we are ever (pray it never happens) proven right.

          • My one issue with the show was, why were you on it? Unless that wasn't your house and you don't live where you live, I would never put myself on TV promoting my families safety and then show my family and what I've done to make them safe.

  8. Great list, especially for the none prepper.
    Some place you can get the conversation started.
    One thing, in the last picture you show rotation food storage.
    Know where someone can buy them?

    • Sometimes they sell them at costco, but when I saw them there it looked like it wasn't going to be a permanent product. The ones in my house came from here http://www.shelfreliance.com/food-rotation-system… these are highly adjustable in can sizes and the site has some other things people might find useful. I'm sure you can find cheaper ones at a resteraunt supply warehouse that probably aren't as adaptable but are probably cheaper.

    • I bought shelf units at Sam's Club. They used to be called Gorilla shelves. not it's something else. Made in China but fairly decent units at a reasonable price.

  9. How "kooky" your preps are depends on what your vision of TSHTF happens to be. Folks who think we are going to be grid down for what ever reason need to be ready to survive that way and that drives one type of prep. If you think there are hordes of MZB in your future (I don't, but that's me) then 'hunkering down' in a secluded place and setting up your defenses makes sense to you. If circumstances dictate that you shelter in place in a city you are limited to what you can do. Without knowing the future, you can only take your best guess at what is needed and then implement those preps. That first month worth of prepping is a milestone. Once there increases are easier. For a great many problems that is sufficient. Most folks consider the wing-nuts to be those who think things will be worse off than they think things will get. My rule of thumb is to make your best guess, double it, and then add 10% because Murphy was a bloody optimist.

    In actual fact, to me the scary people are those who consider prepping to be getting ready to be MZB. These guys intend to harm others in order to survive. They typically come across as Mall Ninjas – talk loud and long about things they know little or nothing about. They are not physically or emotionally prepared to survive and provide the excuse for a great many folks to not prep. They give all serious preppers a bad name.

    • I agree with you. People definitely should be prepared for something that could happen such as a natural disaster, unemployment, utilities fail, or economic problems. People who joke about mzb or things that will never happen or even actually prepare for them with things designed specifically for it are just plain annoying and crazy if they actually believe it will happen and aren't just trying to be funny.

  10. Like everybody else, I agree that this is a great article. I do not prep for arrmagedon, my soul is prepared already, I prep for natrual disaster, power outage, ect.. I got into the prepping thing from living in the great divide in Colorado, hence the name, and we would often get snowed in for days at a time. From there I just saw more and more reason to be prepared for other possibilities. I now live in the desert but the thought process is the same. I love this article, this is the reason I frequent this site. Keep up the good work.

  11. There are 'unnatural disasters' as well. Back in 2000, after the 'dotcom-crash', I lost my job (4 different companies failed out from under me in 6 months) , my house, my savings and everything but my minivan, boxes of stored supplies and a big tent. Between unemployment compensation, selling handicrafts and being too much of a PITA to die, lived in the proverbial "van by the river" in a campground (learn to make tasty chili and bbq and the weekend folks WILL pay you, if it smells good) for 7 months before I could get a crappy factory job a t 20% of what I made as a web developer.

    If you can stay alive, fed, warm and dry, you'll be surprised by what you can live through. Don't just prepare for the "zombies" you are comfortable to think about – sh*t happens to everyone.

    • You sir, are the consumate survivor! It all boils down to the "will to survive" and skills (known or aquired on site), and resorce management. My hat's off to you! Great post!

      • Oddly, having very old parents was a big help. Mine made it through the Great Depression, and I grew up hearing their stories. My Mom was lucky. She and 2 of her sisters kept their jobs, the whole time, so the sisters all moved back in w/their parents and kept the family going. My Dad, on the other hand, drove a lumber truck for a papermill that went belly-up.

        He, and about a dozen other out-of work drivers and lumberjacks, took 'adverse possession' of an abandoned lumber camp owned by the defunct company, fished, hunted, cut firewood, and, on occasion, used 'appropriated' company trucks to make 'friendly exchanges' of American cigarettes for Canadian alcohol with their similarly-unemployed relatives at a very lightly-guarded national border.

        I still remember his look of wistful nostalgia discussing the "Hard Times", and knew that if he could do it, so could I.

  12. …continued…
    The lesson, yes, even in this information age where the Mayor of New York has a Twitter feed PEOPLE WILL WAIT until the last minute to prepare, and when they do they probably won't know WTF they are doing. Pity them if you will (I do. A LITTLE) and give yourself a little pat on the back, or save it and tell us about it here.

    As it turns out, as Irene bumped into North Carolina she was disrupted enough to not regain strength and really was just an unusually bad storm. Trees were knocked down, there was some flooding from the storm surge and quite a bit of rain. I think the blizzard or the Nor'Easter we had this past winter was actually more severe in terms of wind and hazards. I know there is a sense among survivalists/preppers of looking forward to cataclysmic events and coming out on top because you took the time to prepare, a sort of justification for all your hard work.
    Lesson: Do not wish a disaster upon yourself. While I haven't found myself in a life-or-death struggle against calamity, I am grateful for it. Doesn't mean I won't prepare for it, but I really would rather just keep it at bay. I mean this in the most respectful way, but it was pointed out about in this comment thread that I was lucky to have a dry-run, I can't help but find a similarity to one being "lucky" to have had (military) combat experience. Sure, I bet there is much to be learned from it, but wouldn't you really rather NOT have someone trying to kill you? (Disclosure, I am non-military, but I have had someone shoot at me… not my fault, honest.)

    So, there you go. A SurvivalCache.com reader and his family experienced Hurricane Irene and lived to tell about it.

    • Thank you for sharing, sir. Actual experience is an interesting, mixed bag, type of thing. All pilots train for an engine failure while hoping never to have one. It is only after you've lost an engine for real that you KNOW, not just think, how you will react. There is security in knowing that I won't freeze up if my only engine quits. It isn't fun, I didn't want it, I would have preferred it didn't happen but I now have the security of knowing I will react properly.
      I agree that none of us should want TSHTF to happen. We would all prefer that our kids have to decide what to do with all of our stuff after we die of old age. There is a level of confidence, however, that comes from having your preparations work properly. Now you know you will react well, if there are any holes you can fill them and you have data points for your decision making next time. You also have a clue as to how your neighbors will react.
      I'm glad everything went well for you and yours. Thank you again for your insights.

  13. I don't advertise what I do, but if somoene asks I always tell ask them if they have life insurance. Most people do and prepping isn't a lot different in most ways. In some ways it even makes more sense then life insurance. You will NEVER get to use your own life insurance but you might get to /have to use your stores.

  14. For beginners. (1) Try not to store too much cash. If the economy collapses, and it very well could, a devaluation could really hurt. Try to save up and have on hand (not in a bank) a minimum of $500 to $2500 cash in bills of $1, $5, $10 and $20 denominations. (2) Try to obtain at least five ounces of gold with three as minimum. One ounce and half ounce Eagles are probably the best bet. One ounce should be in four quarter ounce British Soverigns known world-wide or five fifth ounce Swiss Francs. (3) Silver: obtain 500 ounces or at least 300 minimum. Silver Eagles or Canadian Maple Leaves are the best "rounds" to buy. One, five and ten ounce known bars such as Englehardt are good. Avoid bigger bars. Buy pre-1965 silver US coins. Of your total silver, have a roll of silver dollars, two rolls of silver half dollars, four rolls of silver quarters and four rolls of silver dimes in fine to uncirculated condition only. These will be your "change." (4) You want gold and silver that will be readily acceptable. Only you and family should know what you have! Sell off everything that you do not really need to help accomplish this!

    • i think golds great if you have a spare five grand to buy those three ounces. for everyone else i think silver and copper would be better to have. its more affordable which means you could purchase more of it.

      i dont even think you need to sell things off to get the metals just like when paying of credit card debt save and store.

      • Copper will do you absolutely no good. This is an "investors only" arena for the big traders in the area of futues – puts and calls. Try to buy anything with copper other than pennies. By the way, true copper pennies are now worth six cents. Gold and silver is not an investment. It is a store of wealth. Example: a 1963 quarter bought a gallon of gas in 1963. That same quarter buys a gallon today die to silver content. The dollar, a fiat currncy, has devalued that much. In 6 months, G=$3200, S=$100. Gold transports better due to weight factor. The average Mid-Class household can sell off things they do not really need to buy G & S. If the economy collapses, credit cards will be useless. If you can not buy gold, buy silver.

        • But weve used copper as currency in the pass, so wouldnt it be right to assume that we might need to use it again? im not saying three ounces is enough to have on hand but it wouldnt be unreasonable to assume you could use it for trade.

          I understand what your saying about it be a store of wealth but were are you going to cash it into? Assuming along with the government shut down banks close as well, for security purposes. or whom ever takes gold for cash. Or are you saying to have your wealth in gold so when stability returns your not being screwed out of anything thats yours? i wanna make sure im not getting confused by what your saying.

    • I would tend to disagree, but just a bit.

      A few rolls of 'junk silver' dimes, etc, might well be good to have, but my attitude is shaped by the comments of a (departed) coin-dealer friend, who grew up, and escaped-from pre-WWII Eastern Europe, who gave me his take on gold, when I wanted to buy..

      What he said was "when SHTF, nobody makes change. You want a loaf of bread. You have a silver dime, it costs a silver dime, you have a gold Kruggerrand, guess what it costs?"

      Go to a restaurant supply store and buy a couple hundred bucks worth of good quality (but cheap) $10 carbon steel kitchen knives, stainless steel pans, towels and tools. Now, you have trade goods. 🙂

  15. REason 2 is exactly why im starting to prepare myself. I have to little ones that i have to think about. Honestly anyone with small children should prepare just a little.

  16. I like what i've been reading, just like to add a few things. medical supplies, and it might not be a bad idea to read up on some old time remedies. I would look for a book explaining some of the natural medicines that grow in your area. Also stock up on soap, T/P, tooth paste, and even an extra bottle or two of clorox, by keeping clean you also increase your chances of surviving. Also a case of inexpensive whiskey,vodka etc. You be surprised it could become a good barter product. And if nothing happens, you'll be clean and happy, because you can drink the alcohol Lol" Seriously i hope we never have to use any of our supplies in an emergency. It's like riding without a spare tire you hope you never get a flat tire, but when you do you are happy you have a good spare tire. Good luck to ALL"

  17. Getting others involved is the toughest part of preparing. One suggestion is to evaluate what the other person or persons are already doing without knowing they are. Point out the things they do automatically, such as watching for food sales. Even the most skeptical person will purchase extra items on sale, right? My wife was tough at first, but after I demonstrated what she was doing anyway, the ball started rolling. Now she's even bought a 870 youth 20 ga, on her own, started buying a couple "extra" items when shopping, and even brings up future preps in dinner conversation! I think I'll keep her! NOTE: You can't eat an elephant in one bite.

  18. After living through several earthquakes,2 major riots and then moving to the south to get away from all that only to go through hurricanes and tornados, I said to myself self it's time to get prepared for the worst case scenario! Many of my friends and family thought I was just paranoid , but when I had food water and power after the 94 ice storm here in MS. they kind of wised up! I now maintain 3 caches of survival gear and 2 EDC bags. I have always been an avid firearms enthusiest and have an exstensive arsenal so personal protection has never been an issue. I recommend that everyone prepare for the unknown, and get some training and practice your survival skills often. One of my favorite quotes is "Victorty favors the prepared mind" and it is very true. But remember training and practice or all your prepping won't be worth squat!!

  19. Great informative article opens ones eyes to the bigger picture. I have been a prepper for years friends and family ask what I am preparing for? I say what am I not prepaing for( to some extent)?

  20. Right after the 2008 election I went to my local gun store where I noticed a man fill his basket with many types of ammo, I did not say a word but I guess he noticed me looking at him, At which point he looked me square in the eye and said " I voted for Obamma But I dont trust him or anybody else with my Guns " It was at that moment that I realized that being a skeptic or not we all want to live. So he was prepping just like me Two different political views but we both knew in the end it is up to GOD and our planning that make us a Survivor

  21. Great article. Got to reason number 5 and laughed, because I did find change under the seat of our '72 Stang just yesterday! But seriously, I can take a few ideas from this and use them to convince my wife to believe preparedness isn't just for TEOTWAWKI. She's just so damn stubborn.

  22. You hear these people saying preppers are stupid and what if you are wrong. I say what if I am right. I ask them do you have health and life insurance, a savings account or retirement, did you go or want to go to college? If you are already planning for the future and what if scenarios then why not prep in some form. I tell people its good to choose a 3; 3 days, weeks or monthes of food water and security. I figure the more people around me with supplies; hopefully the more likely they will leave me alone.

  23. Great advice. I am 62 years old and never thought we would come to this ….the end of the USA.
    I watch Book TV on the week ends. For every book that gives advice how we can " Regain Americas prominence again" or " Survive the coming disaster"…there are two authors who say,,," thats it we have had it"…..I was shocked when I first heard it.
    I am not a political person,. but the present administration is nothing new. It is the same old " spin"…now we have Democrats lying to the public instead of Republicans,,,,,,…its not good,.. folks.
    I live in Upstate NY. The area was "created" by IBM who brought prosperity to the region. Engineers were making great money….factory workers were making $50,000 per year and had benefits. Then, IBM like all the other companies decided to keep the money by cutting income. The workers were told…: "the good news is you have a job…the bad news is you are making half what you were making yesterday"…some took the hit, but many left the area. In 1993 my house dropped $30,000 in balue for all the houses that were for sale ( IBM workers leaving NY)….Today, all the work you can get is yours…for $7.50 per hour and no benefits, Try living on that. I can;t.
    The Administration promised new things in 2008. Were the voters daft? They voted Obama in and he "created cash"…by the Stimulus. Well, I am a business major and was in business for 45 years. You do not create business by printing money…you create business by creating new industry…by MANUFACTURING…..
    I don;t want to go on with politics…we are at the edge of the abyss and will fall in come January.
    The politicos are digging in their heels and may argue over a few hundred million, but each day we borrow $50,000 a second…yes a second, to keep a bankrupt government afloat.
    The SWHTF, come January as the interest rates start to go up. Remember the 1970s when interest rates were 15-17%…????/ You are going to wish we had it so good.
    The Oil has been manipulated, so the price of oil is high enough that we can start producing oil from the oil sands that we knew about since the 1960s. Wells that were capped when oil was cheap are being un capped….the fix was in to inflate oil so the big oil companies can make even more money. ( Remember we had 12 years of Bush administration…oil businessmen)
    Even though the USA is producing more oil, we won't be able to keep up with the demand. China and India are getting our money from making our products, and demanding a better economy. 20 years ago, you went to China and the people were all riding bikes. Now they are all driving cars and want more. India is behind them, again due to the money we have been giving them by outsourcing all our business ( IBM, Ruger, many other companies)…..
    I have my 12 gauge and my 223…I am trying to get a 9mm pistol or 45.
    You site is great….I applaud you.
    The SWHTG come January…..
    take care….
    Good luck to us all…

  24. Old people prepping is a bit sad – like that guy who spent his whole life building ark II, like the guy in the big rig with his wife and two dogs, like the really fat guy who dresses all in black and stashes knives all over his house. Those people are all so close to death, and they're wasting their last few years. They will surely need coffins before they need any of the gear they've hoarded.

    I, however am 43, but I'm vegan and active so my fitness level surpasses that of most people in their 20's around here. I have propably another 43 years left in me. For me, a father or two, with a lovely, healthy wife it makes sense to think that I'll probably experience some kind of historical hardship like a major weather event or even a major depression, but for these old, fat, unhealthy preppers it makes no sense to waste their last few years on this stuff.

  25. "At first I just thought it was my imagination, but…"

    It's always so comforting to hear someone start that way.
    I used to think I was imagining things, too.


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