Why Prepare?

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by DarkLight, May 6, 2015.

  1. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus

    First and foremost, if and when I discuss the topic of preparation, i actually use that word. Prepping, preps and the prepper have negative connotations sounding them. Instead of immediately starting off on the wrong foot, I discuss eventualities and how best to prepare for them.

    As for what I prepare for... it's initially the little stuff, to keep things like power outages and snowstorms and the annual hurricane season in the category of "minor inconvenience" or nuisance. A fair amount of food with alternative ways to prepare it. Heat. Water. Protection. Without having to plan on a last minute run to the store.

    Next came preparing for brief to mid-sized disruptions. Fuel. Food. Medications.

    Now im concerned about being prepared for civil unrest. The problem with that is it's potentially so big with so many components and potential moving parts...I feel a but overwhelmed with it. I think we'll be okay if we're all at home but if not, that could be messy.

    As much as we discuss EOTW situations, I'm not prepared for those. I want to be but I'm not in a place yet where I have a BOL or a MAG. I think we'll get there but we have a ways to go.

    Long story short, I'm preparing for what I can in order to protect and provide for my family. I see that as my role, my job. I can't prepare for armed insurrection except maybe mentally. I can't prepare for the New Madrid fault going or the Yellowstone Caldera letting loose, I don't think any of us really can though, so I try to focus on the things that are likely or have a realistic potential and attempt to mitigate their impact.
    GrayGhost, Bear, chelloveck and 5 others like this.
  2. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Like all other preparations, two options are really needed, and a third is better. Build a decision tree based on what you might anticipate, starting with the decision to get out of Dodge, or stay put. Work it up from there.

    (War gaming at the individual level, one might say.)
    GrayGhost, Bear, chelloveck and 5 others like this.
  3. DarkLight

    DarkLight Live Long and Prosper - On Hiatus

    Now that I'm in front of a computer and not on my phone, maybe I can clarify the above because it doesn't seem to flow like it did in my head.

    Like I said, my goal is to be able to continue to provide the basic necessities for my family (and as much above that as I can) during times of hardship. What hardship? I don't know but categorically I would have to lump them all into the non-permanent variety. The majority of things we have to deal with aren't truly life altering but rather routine modifying. This includes all of the weather related issues or economic blips along the road (higher gas prices, etc.). They also include things like emergency dental work that we are able to pay for out of the budget over a couple of cycles rather than dipping into savings, and using food storage to stretch the time between trips to the grocery store.

    Preparing includes being ready for "life" though as well. For reasons I won't get into, we haven't done what we'd have liked to do monetarily for college for the kids. As a result, we're kind of scrambling to get our ducks in a row so we can continue to save (so we don't need to live with one of the kids later on in life) and also put additional money away to help each of them out. No, we won't be paying their way but we will be helping as much as we can with at least room and board...which isn't cheap.

    So what am I preparing for? I guess anything that I could weather by hunkering down and bugging in.
    Bear, chelloveck, Hanzo and 5 others like this.
  4. -06

    -06 Monkey+++

    I do not think "prepper, preps, etc" give a negative connotation. There is a growing and large segment of America that is aware of the fragile supply system. A bud has three levels of preps. Last one enables them to leave permanently and still keep a level of comfort.
    Hanzo, ghrit, Motomom34 and 1 other person like this.
  5. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    I think it is Dave Ramsey that said you should have 3 months of salary set aside. If I became unemployed, I have months of food set aside. I have prepared for electric outages and such. My preps are part of my setting money aside in case unemployment happens. While reading @DarkLight's he said he is prepared for the light stuff. Probably everyone else on here is also. The minor inconveniences of power outages and storms would be like a drill for most of us. It is definitely a process that one gains confidence as they continue to learn and accomplish. I am not prepared for end of the world as we know it but I have confidence and knowledge that I have a good shot at survival. IMO mental preparation is one of the most important things. I don't have a BOL nor will I for a long time or forever but that is okay. I am going to have confidence in what I do have and do know.
    GrayGhost, Bear, chelloveck and 7 others like this.
  6. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    @DarkLight ... interesting read...

    Here's my HO ... that fact that you are thinking about these things tells me you are probably more "prepared" than most... and maybe even more than you think you are...

    Everyone here has made some great points... @Motomom34 's point about mental preparation is important... probably critical... and definitely absolutely essential.... here's some thought's I share with folks about that...
    1. Always Think about what you are thinking about.
    2. Always be prepared to be unprepared.
    3. Always expect the unexpected
    4. Always keep your head about you when everyone else is losing theirs

    Two books that I always recommend...

    Deep Survival - Main lesson I took away... doesn't matter how well prepared you are, how much equipment and supplies you have, how much training you have had and/or what kind of expert you are.... if you don't do those 4 things up there... and you panic... you die... and if your loved ones are depending on you... they die.

    The Unthinkable - Main lesson I took away... we think and do dumb things when tshtf... and that brief pause or lost precious seconds... may mean ... you die... and if your loved ones are depending on you... they die...


    5. Think about the Unthinkable...

    @melbo and @Hanzo know about the little unthinkable exercise I put people through... and it sucks... but when it happens... you won't waste precious time thinking about what to do.... after that... every other scenario is easy...

    I read a lot of posts on fire arms, blades, martial arts... my related thoughts on all of those...

    Carry/own a fire arm - expect to get shot - bad - better know how to deal with that... and run or walk away...
    Carry/own a blade - expect to get cut - bad - better know how to deal with that... and run or walk away...
    Martial arts - expect to hit - better be able to take a beating, get up and either run or walk away...

    So the Inevitable, regardless of how "Prepared" or badass you are.... we will all die someday... (hopefully not tired ;) )
    And more sadly... we will see our loved ones die...

    Better get your spiritual house in order as well... whatever or whoever that is...

    Sometimes... the difference between good times and bad... peace and helplessness... life and death...
    is a miracle from an answered prayer....
    Don't believe in miracles???... when it's you and your loved ones... you will... so start now!

    You're on the right path taking the right steps @DarkLight ... sorry for rambling....

    The longest journey begins with a single step... baby steps... and each step... you see further...

    JMHO... thoughts of "Silly Ole Bear"... old and grouchy too ;)

    Have a great week!

    Take Care and God bless,

    GrayGhost, D2wing, Motomom34 and 8 others like this.
  7. Dont

    Dont Just another old gray Jarhead Monkey

    My thoughts? Live it if you can.. When you live every day as if, and you meet those daily challenges, that is when you know you can handle the eventual complications of life..
    Prepping is only putting away in times of plenty for those times of famine... Knowledge or food and fuel. It don't matter. What is it that will ensure the continued well being of yourself and of your family....
    GrayGhost, Motomom34, Ganado and 5 others like this.
  8. NotSoSneaky

    NotSoSneaky former supporter

    Whatever you decide to prep for, DONT USE A CREDIT CARD !
    Unless you are 100% positive you can have a zero balance at the end of the month.
    Because a big part of prepping is to be debt free. [coo]
    Bear, techsar, Motomom34 and 2 others like this.
  9. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    My and My Wife's families have "Prepared" for most such eventualities, back 4 Generations. It is what we were TAUGHT, and it is what we DO. It is in the Family Histories. I am the Great Grandson of Anson Call, a Utah/SE Idaho Pioneer/Settler. He was BIG into "Being Prepared" as witnessed, in his Daily Diaries. He rescued my Great Great Grandmother, Emma, from a terrible Early Winter Storm, from the snow bound Willy HandCart Company Disaster, on the Wyoming Plains. He took her in, as she was alone, destitute, and near Dead. Married Her, and had a daughter they named Lucina, who married a fellow named Jasper Perkins. My Great Grandmother, who had a daughter, Cloe, who married a Master Plumber/Mandolin Player, named Stanley Erskine, My Grandfather. They had a daughter named Maurice, a Nurse, who married a young Banker named John Gordon, My Father.... The whole Bunch, lived by the precepts, that were instilled in them, by Gramps Call, and so do MANY of the rest of the Extended Family of Anson Call's Progeny. My wife's Family has similar History, going back just as far. Starting with a Danish Couple, that Ran away from home, and jumped on a Ship, Sailing to the New World. Prep'ing is just a term, that we use today, that means, "You work hard, all your life, and raise your children to be "God Fearing, Upstanding, Honest Folks" that do the same. Teach the Family Traditions, and Histories, to the Next Generation, so they can Follow in those Traditions, as they grow a Family of their Own" Quote taken from GrandPa Calls Diary....
    He was a No BS type of Guy, and had no problem with teaching the US Army, (Johnston's Army) "A Thing or Two" about messing with Him, and his Boys, out on the Wyoming Plains, near the Upper Platte River
    Last edited: May 10, 2015
    sarawolf, Bear, techsar and 4 others like this.
  10. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    I think that one is the hardest one. As a parent that is my goal to care and provide for my family. But in a survival/SHTF scenario I could make a mistake that could cost us all dearly. Confidence is big and also sharing what I am doing, why I am doing this and having them practice alongside me is very important.
    Bear, Ganado, vonslob and 1 other person like this.
  11. -06

    -06 Monkey+++

    "Why Prepare"--why not prepare? What type of person does not have any thing set back for even minor lifestyle upsets? What type of person has no way to protect their family or anyone else? What type of person has no concern for these scenarios? Who ever they are I do not want them knowing anything about me and especially not living nearby. These are the types of people who will storm your home seeking food/etc when they are starving. Harsh reality will have to be assessed to stop them. Seems terrible to face such but then death at their hands is harsh also.
    Brokor and Bear like this.
  12. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    They are easy to spot, just check their EBT union card (Everybody's But Their's)....:cautious:
    Bear likes this.
  13. madmax

    madmax Far right. Bipolar. Veteran. Don't push me.

    I'm in FL. We've been through a few hurricanes. Lights go out. Trees fall on the house. Power lines down in the street so no trips to the store. If you could get there you'ld find checkout line a mile long...if they had anything left to sell. Doing at least some prep to bug in is pretty much just good sense. We also have a stocked slide-in camper to get out if it looks to be going to be real bad. Problem is we have one direction to go... north. Along with half the state. What a nightmare to be stuck in a traffic jam on I 75 in a hurricane. Which is why we've ridden them all out here. Civil unrest or economic collapse would likely drive us to the cabin in the mountains.
    Bear and Motomom34 like this.
  14. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    IMG_20150511_185403591_HDR. Why do we prepare? For days like today. Tornados just came through, and trees are down on the wires. Power may be out for some time, and more storms are expected tonight.
    Is it a problem? Only a minor one, as there is a working generator out back, and more gas than I could run through in a few days. The gas works, the water works, just no power. I could cook outdoors, on the grill, or add to the heat inside by using the gas stove.
    It will not effect bathing, nor internet, as long as the phones hold out, and there are several methods of charging them available. Food? Some, if the generator is not used for a day or two, we would lose some, but ice packs in the freezer door will keep the fridge cold for several days.(even without the generator) plenty of baking materials, enough can goods for a week or more, and the freezer is about half full.
    This is just an inconvenience for a while.;)
    Last edited: May 11, 2015
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  15. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    $2.00 well spent:) IMG_20150511_205641590.
    Bear, Motomom34, BTPost and 3 others like this.
  16. Pax Mentis

    Pax Mentis Philosopher King |RIP 11-4-2017

    As I have mentioned here before (seemingly oh so long ago), I pretty much inherited the prepping gene from my dad.

    He was born in 1900 and, to him, it just made sense to be ready for whatever life might hit one with. I always had trouble discarding things that could someday be useful, but never really consciously "prepped" until the early '80s...which coincidentally was the same time my wife and I started building our vacation home that was meant to (and did) grow over the years to be our dream retirement property. As a result, I was able to incorporate a whole prepping theme into it.

    I try to be ready for anything that I feel is survivable. If there is something I see that will help me (or, now, my kids/grandkids since I have reached an age where I think it is likely that TWAWKI will outlast me) I try to incorporate it. This year I actually turned the responsibility for "The Place" over to my son, but that will probably never keep me from continuing to try and think of as many things as I can until the day I fall over and (hopefully) become fertilizer.
    GhettoPass, BlueDuck, Ganado and 4 others like this.
  17. Pax Mentis

    Pax Mentis Philosopher King |RIP 11-4-2017

    At the same time, not making a decision right now is usually the worst mistake you could make.
    Action is always better than inaction...but sometimes hiding until things clear can be that action.
    BTPost likes this.
  18. Pax Mentis

    Pax Mentis Philosopher King |RIP 11-4-2017

    Except I know a sickening number of folks with 6 figure incomes who have nothing set aside because first of all it can't happen to them and secondly (if they get that deep) the .gov safety net is there to catch them.
  19. kellory

    kellory An unemployed Jester, is nobody's fool. Banned

    True. A friend of mine put a lot of money into his house, then his company got bought up by another company and lots of jobs ended. His among them. He lost his house, and is hurting money wise.
  20. markthenewf

    markthenewf Chief Newf

    I believe it's just a gamble since a lot of what happens we don't see coming. Most of whatever is likely to happen rarely has a big impact, such as a storm that knocks out your power for a day. On the other hand, the unexpected and less likely are what really catches you off guard. I had two of those instances a few years back: Surprise! One was environmental, another was health related. Kinda caught me with my britches down, so this is the reason I prepare. So now at this stage, it's the typical stuff that you think: hurricanes, wildfires, chemical spills (I live near a railway), etc. Being ready for these will in turn get me ready, or at least better prepared than most, of the more unlikely things in my area such as outbreaks or civil unrest.
    sarawolf likes this.
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