While I was working in one of the various welding shops in southeast Texas, one of my coworkers told me about his theory of fake people. I would like to share that theory with all of you.
A fake person is someone who has no identity of their own. They have no hobbies that set them apart from anyone else. When the fake person is around other people, they adopt the attitude of the people the fake person is around.
I am going to use a certain individual that I know. He is in his late 20s, married and has three children. He also adopts the lifestyle of whoever he is around.
When he was living with a girlfriend a few years ago, his apartment was always spotless. He kept his truck clean,,, just an overall clean person.
That relationship ended, and he started dating a certain woman, who I only know to describe as whitetrash. She comes from a welfare family, house is nasty looking, trash in the yard,,, just stuff like that.
Instead of keeping a clean house, the guy adopted to living like whitetrash. The yard is full of trash, the floors of the house are nasty, dogs chained in the front yard, just your typical whitetrash family.
There is an interesting thread in the forum that got me to thinking; that thread is what are you truly prepping for? What kind of disaster are you preparing for? Are you prepping for an outbreak of a new disease, long term civil unrest, nuclear war,,, or something else?
My personal opinion, as long as you and your family are prepping, at least you are going in the right direction. The difference is the degree of readiness.
I can not tell you what to prep for. All I can do is tell you how my family and I are prepping.
My long term survival plans include food production, safe drinking water and property protection.
During the Black Death of 1348 – 1350 starvation probably killed as many people as the bubonic plague. Modern society is based on farms and modern transportation. Where would our grocery stores be without trucks, fuel and highways?
Just like the city dwellers of the middle ages, city dwellers of today depend on farmers, roads, transportation and merchants to maintain a steady supply of food to the cities. If just one or two items in the supply line break down, people will go hungry. When people get hungry, society breaks down.
Lets say you went to the grocery store tomorrow and the shelves were empty, what would you do? What is your long term food solution?
A lot of survivalist plan on bugging out to the wilderness. I do not subscribe to that long term survival theory.
If you want to bug out somewhere, why not bug out to a rural location where you can plant crops and raise livestock? Would you rather be scavenging acorns to make acorn flour, or picking peaches and plums off fruit trees? Would you rather be scavenging for berries, or picking peas and snap beans? Would you rather be digging roots, or digging potatoes?
How safe is the water source at your Bug Out Location? Currently, when we stay at the camp we have to either filter water from a nearby creek, or use water from a very old hand dug well. The old well is becoming less and less reliable, so its time to drive a new well.
There is a saying I like to use – without safe drinking water, life as we know it can not exist. A contaminated water source can wipe out a community in a matter of days, and that is just the way it is.
Water well diagram for the Bug Out Location
Here are the current plans
Use post hole digger to dig a hole around 3 feet deep.
Insert around an 8 inch PVC sleeve into the hole, sleeve will be around 4 feet long. This gives us around 1 foot above ground.
Take a 4 inch piece of PVC pipe, notch the end so that the pipe has “teeth”.
Build a cap with 2 water inlets.
Attach water hoses to water source and to cap.
Take a 2×4, drill some holes so that a U-bolt will fit though the board.
Back truck up to well site and drop tailgate.
Attach the cap to the top of the 4 inch pipe.
Stand on tailgate of truck, insert pipe into sleeve.
Stockpiling survival gear, stockpiling food, stockpiling ammunition,,, are we prepping for something that will never happen? Has our time been squandered? Has everything we have done, been done in vain?
I consider myself to be active in the survivalist / prepping community for close to 20 years. In the late 1980s I became aware that I needed to be able to protect my family during times of civil unrest, so I started reloading and stockpiling ammunition.
In the 1990s I started stockpiling basic food groups, forming bug out plans, and started buying more firearms.
From the early 1990s – 2012, what has happened in the world to warrant living a survivalist lifestyle? Have we had an outbreak of a new plague, we had the swine flu but it fizzled out, no nuclear war,,,. Overall, besides the twin towers being brought down, and the conflict in the middle east, the world has been a pretty peaceful place.
The first part of the 21st century has been a lot more peaceful then the first part of the 20th century.
100 years ago tensions where rising in Europe. Unknown at the time there was a World War just around the corner.
One thing that keeps me going is the knowledge that governments will never live in peace with each other. The people may live in peace, but the governments never will.
I feel the U.S. government is trying to pick a fight with Russia or China. But only time will tell if anything ever happens.
Is prepping worth the hundreds of hours invested? If either my wife or I lose our job, we have plenty of food stockpiled.
Besides the occasional hurricane, I rarely get to use my preps. My Berkey water filter sits at the Bug Out Location, unused for around 3 years. The last time I shot my rifle I had to wipe dust off the scope lens – that is a fact I am not very proud of.
Where do we draw the line? Survivalist spend so much time, effort and money building their stockpiles, and for what? For the fishing gear to go unused, or the rifles and shotguns to collect dust, for the ammunition to stay stored in the ammo cans,,,.
One of the questions that gets thrown around the forums quit a bit is “when is S going to HTF?”. I have been waiting for over 20 years. The only things that have happened are a few hurricanes have made landfall.
How many times can the fear mongers cry wolf before people start to lose interest?
Back in the early 1990s there were stories going around about the U.N. was getting ready to invade the U.S. 20 years later its the same story over and over and over and over. Holy crap, how many times are we going to hear the same fear mongering before we start to get bored?
I have tried to live a survivalist lifestyle that is sustainable – meaning that I am doing my best not to get burnt out. After 20+ years of the same thing, it starts to get old after awhile.
Maybe I need to go fishing? Maybe I need to do something to get away from the computer? Maybe I need to take a break for a little while, not from blogging, but from survivalism. Yea, I think my wife and I need to go fishing, maybe go to the camp, maybe go to the movies.
If there is one thing that keeps me going, it has to be my children. What kind of world are we leaving to our kids? A nation riddled with debt, a shrinking middle class, a government that spends more then it takes in, nuclear tensions rising between nations.
I worry about that the world will be like in 20 years. I am 44 years old. What are things going to be like in 20 or 30 more years? What kind of world can me children and my grandchildren look forward to?
I did a google search for “prepping is a never ending process”, no exact results came back, so I thought I would write an article on the topic.
My entry into the survivalist / prepping communities is in part to how I was raised. My grandparents owned a small farm where they had livestock – horse, cow, chickens, turkeys, well that we got water from,,,. When I started school, I remember my 1st and 2nd grade teachers telling the class what a nuclear detonation looked like. If we saw a mushroom cloud outside, look away, cover our head with our hands and duck under our desk. During the cold war we lived in a constant state of readiness for nuclear war.
In the 1980s the USSR collapsed, and the cold war ended. For a short period of time we seemed to be at peace with the world. The new found peace did not last very long. In 1990 Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. Then we had the Waco, L.A. riots and Ruby ridge incident.
In 2001 the twin towers were attacked, which thrust us into a war on terror.
As the primary threats change, so do our prepping plans.
Our prepping strategy changed from a threat of nuclear war, to the U.S. being torn apart.
Regardless of the threat, basic human needs will stay the same – food, water, shelter, security, ability to cook, need to form social groups,,,, and so on.
Unless you are off the power grid, on a totally self-sufficient farm, you are not 100% prepared for a total collapse. People that lived 4,000 years ago traded with those around them. As our lives grow more complicated, the more dependent we are on other people. We went from trading raw materials such as tin, copper, wheat,,,, to trading computer parts and smart phones.
Where does this take us? Maybe we need to simplify our prepping plans?
In the 1990s my prepping plans included stockpiling rice, beans, ammunition and plans to bug out to the camp (my grandparents farm). From there my family and I were going to live off the land.
Times change, plans change.
My plans went from stockpiling mostly rice and beans, to stockpiling canned foods, #10 cans of freeze dried foods, planting fruit trees, food stored in mylar bags, stockpiling seeds, and having a chicken coop that can be loaded on a trailer and brought to the bug out location.
Without safe drinking water life as we know it can not exist. Because of that fact my family and I plan on driving a new water well.
Plans changed from cooking over an open fire, to building a bar-b-q pit large enough to cook a whole hog on. Hopefully the pit can act as a smoker, as well as a cooker.
Plans changed from using the old well and water from a nearby creek, to driving a new well for safe drinking water.
Plans changed from hunting as our primary source of protein, to having chickens in a portable chicken coop.
Plans changed from stockpiling bulk 22 long rifle, to stockpiling subsonic and high quality hypersonic ammunition.
In the 1990s my plans covered my wife, and my 4 children. Today, my plans have to cover my wife, children, stepchildren, and grandchildren. As my family grows, my plans have to adapt to the changes.
Just as life is a never ending process, so prepping is a never ending process. As life changes, so should your prepping plans change and adapt.
Just before Hurricane Rita made landfall I observed something that I probably will never forget, and that was a guy with a lowboy trailer loaded with 55 gallon drums. He was at the gas station filling up the drums – and we wonder why gas stations run out of fuel so fast during a disaster?
I am as guilty as the next person about panic buying. When the word comes that a hurricane is heading our way, my wife and I will take a trip to the local china-mart to pick up a few last minute items.
There is a difference in picking up a “few” items, and trying to stockpile several weeks worth of food in one trip.
Every time a hurricane comes around, people will kick into high gear panic buying mode. They run down to the store and start buying everything in sight.
As hurricane Ike was approaching a few years ago, I heard people at china-mart talking about how the store was out of this or that. The people that were talking agreed to buy “something”. That “something” was whatever was left on the shelves.
Its that “we have nothing, so we have to buy anything” desperation that makes the whole situation worse. People walk around china-mart, their eyes have a semi-blank stare, and their mouths slightly open, kinda like a deer in the headlights.
When my wife and I go to china-mart before the landfall of a hurricane, its to pick up some bread, maybe a gallon of milk, maybe some more bottled water,,,. Its not that we are out, or need the items, we just want a couple of extra.
Stress levels go up as the hurricane approaches landfall. The unprepared sheeple make the situation worse because they are in panic buying mode.
Some of the things to disappear during panic buying (from my observations anyway)
Have you ever met someone that is obsessed with prepping or survivalism? They keep their Get Home Bag ready to go, their Bug Out Bag is prepped and ready to go, keep a firearm in every room of the house,,, to the point where survivalism has consumed their lives. Would that be survivalism, an obsession or paranoia?
There is a fine line between a hobby and an obsession. If that is true, is there a line between a lifestyle and an obsession? What about a hobby and a lifestyle?
If we do the same thing everyday for 10, 20, 30 or even 40 years, would that be considered an obsession? If so, is work an obsession? Sometimes yea, work can be an obsession. Other times work is something we do to live.
If someone practices survivalism for 10, 20, 30,,, years, would that be a lifestyle or an obsession?
Maybe the deciding factor is how much survivalism affects our everyday life. Are we able to have normal relationships, are we able to live our lives as normal as possible while maintaining a dedicated survivalist lifestyle?
There needs to be a balance between prepping and living life as normal as possible.
For this article, the term “Self-Centered Preppers” means people who only think of themselves while preparing for TEOTWAWKI. All they are concerned about is themselves, and “maybe” their close family. No consideration goes into planning for friends, or anyone outside their immediate family members.
A prime example of Self-Centered Preppers might be people who plan on bugging out to the wilderness. How is your family going to deal with the sudden isolation? How are you going to deal with being cut off from friends and family members? How are your friends and family members going to handle a sudden loose of contact with you and your family?
If humanity were to suffer some kind of long term SHTF situation, my family would turn to people such as my dad, and myself for guidance. It is my resp0onsiblity to make sure my family has plenty to eat, protected and that they will be provided of.
Self-Centered Prepper does not care about anyone else. What about your grand kids? What about your kids that can not afford to stockpile food at this time? What about your parents, brothers, sisters, close cousins,,,,?
Friendships are an asset
No man is an island, Rome was not built by a single person, if you want to survive a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation, you will need friends, team members and family members.
Apply Synergy to your plans – the sum of the whole is greater then the parts combined.
There is nothing that you can do that a small team can not do better.
I think it boils down to “Hope for the best but prepare for the worst”.
The question that begs to be answered is “what is the the worst?”. What is the worst case situation that we should prepare for?
For some people “the worst” might be losing their job. For others it might be a wildfire, for others it might be a hurricane or flood. Then there are the people that plan for a complete collapse of society.
Does being a survivalist mean you have to prep for a complete collapse? No, it does not.
To understand survivalism, we need to understand what drives a survivalist. One of the highest levels of human thought is to think about what we think about. Why do we do the things we do, why do we think about what we do, why do we act a certain way, why do we make certain decisions.
Nobody is born a survivalist. Joining the survival community is a conscious decision we make. As with everything else in life, our decisions are influenced by the way we were raised, culture, society, events in our life,,,.
Why do people get into coin collecting? Why do people get into stamp collecting? Why do people get into the hobbies they do? Do they find the hobbies challenging, maybe a way to occupy their free time?
Survivalism is a practical hobby. Grow your own food, preserve and store your own food, just like people used to do decades ago. Maybe survivalism should be considered as a return to basics?
There was once a time when people grew their food during the spring and summer. Then preserved the food to last the family through the winter.
Today, families keep just a few days of food on hand.
As Hank Williams Jr. said in the song “A Country Boy Can Survive”, I have a shotgun, a rifle, a 4 wheel drive and country boy can survive. I can plow a field, I can catch catfish from dusk to dawn, aint too many things these boys cant do, a country boy can survive.
To some people the lyrics of “A Country Boy Can Survive” are just that, lyrics. To others, its a way of life.
Awhile back I read a survey that said the average U.S. citizen is at least 2 – 3 generations removed from farm life. Some kind of long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKIsurvival situation sets in, people are forced to return to rural life, 2 – 3 generations is a lot of relearning.
How many urban dwellers have ran a trotline?
How many urban dwellers have skinned a deer?
How many urban dwellers hunt and fish from dawn to dusk?
How many urban dwellers have access to rural land where they can setup a Bug Out Location?
People that currently raise at least part of their food supply will have a unique advantage over those that are unfamiliar with raising and gathering their on food.
Hunting – Even a blind hog finds an acorn from time to time. One of the things about hunting is being at the right place and at the right time. With those things in mind, an urban dweller could very possibly make a trip to the woods, kill a deer, bring it back home, and then what? Will there be a way to cook or smoke the meat? What happens when the family eats the deer? Where is their next meal coming from? Sooner or later the fuel is going to run out from driving out of the city and back.
When heading to the woods to look for a place to hunt, chances are you are going to run into other people doing the exact same thing.
One of the big questions, where would you hunt? Are you on a hunting lease, do you own land, do you have a friend that owns land? Do you have a safe place to hunt where you are not going to be running into other people?
Then there are the safety issues. There is a reason why you are supposed to wear blaze orange on public hunting lands. Desperate and hungry people will shoot at anything that moves.
I know a certain family first hand, the mom has 5 or 6 kids, she does not work, and the dad makes barely above minimum wage. The family has been drawing food stamps for close to 20 years. One of the kids is in her mid 20s and works. Another girl is around 19 years old. Think about that. The 20 year old was raised on food stamps from birth all the way until she became an adult. And now, the 20 year is pregnant, has no education, and does not work.
The 19 year old claims she is bipolar and is disabled. Guess what, the government signed off on it, and she draws a monthly disability check. What the hell is that? How can someone capable of working able to draw disability?
With the Hurricane Katrina people at the shelter, I saw a lot of young pregnant ladies, whos baby daddy would not work. The mom and baby bring in food stamps and whatever else they can get, and the baby daddy is along for the ride.
I did some volunteer work at a evacuee shelter for some of those Hurricane Katrina people.
One lady walked in, sat down, was handed the application to fill out before she could stay at the shelter. She looked at the application, handed it back to the lady behind the desk (without a single line filled in), and said “I was in public housing in New Orleans, I want to sign up for public housing here and what about my food stamps.” I remember thinking to myself, “what the hell lady, you ever hear of this thing called a job?”.
Another lady showed up at the shelter and made some phone calls to the company worked for. She spent the night in the shelter. The next day the company had her an apartment and a job position in Houston. She was in and out of that shelter in less then 24 hours,,, maybe even less then 12 hours.
Another lady at the shelter was a teacher, she went to the local school and applied for a job.
Another lady went to work at the local corner store.
When the people from the local unemployment office showed up at the shelter to help the people find jobs, a lot of them refused to fill out the paper work; all they wanted was their food stamps and public housing.
There are 2 types of people, those that will help themselves, and those that look for a handout.
There was an interesting comment posted on the survivalistboards facebook page,
You want the world to End, But subscribe to a Survival group….. I hate my VCR I wish Y2K bug was Real….
My reply was,
No, I do not want the world to end. But just in case something happens, I want to be prepared.
Prepare for the worst, hope for the best.
Some people take prepping a little too far. They prepare for the worst regardless of where they are at or what they are doing. I agree with having a get home bag. But on the other side of the coin there are people that keep a complete Bug Out Bag along with a small arsenal in their vehicle. Reading what some people post in forums, its like they are prepping for a zombie invasion to breakout at any second. Unlike what is portrayed on TV, the majority of preppers do not live on the fringe of society. We are everyday people living in the cities, suburbs and rural areas all across the world.
When people look at prepping, they get on the forum and get a little overwhelmed by what they see. It is easy to forget that some of the members of the forum have been prepping for decades.
Prepping is not for the lazy. Sure you can buy some rice and throw it in an airtight box, buy some canned foods and think you have a well rounded survival plan. Just because you “think” you have a well rounded plan does not make it true.
What do preppers do with their spare time? Unless you are some kind of radical survivalist, we do not live in bunkers, nor do we hide in our homes in fear of a zombie invasion. For the most part, preppers (aka survivalist) are just like everyone else. Survivalism / Prepping is a way of life. While some people collect stamps, we check our food stocks. While some people collect coins for fun and profit, we collect silver and gold as a hedge against inflation.
Friday, May 18 was a day to relax after the work week. Friday evening is when my wife and I talk about what we need to do over the weekend.
Saturday, May 19 my wife and I like to get up early and get our shopping done. Breakfast is either a fried egg sandwich with bacon or sausage on the side, or something quick in the microwave. Regardless of what is fixed for breakfast, I like to have either strawberries or a banana on the side. I feel that its important to start the day off with something like yogurt, or some kind of fruit along with my main breakfast.
To wash breakfast down, I usually have a low carb energy drink, such as a rock star or monster.
After breakfast, my wife and I head to town to take care of the shopping. We like to get to get an early start before the stores get too crowded, and before the heat of the day sets in.
Part of the shopping list was put together a week beforehand. Over the past week I took inventory. What did I need to buy, what did I not need to buy? For Saturday I decided to pick up a box of Remington Core-Lokt in 308 Winchester 150 grain. My 30-30 stocks are just about where I want them to be. As usual the local Wal-mart was sold out of American Eagle in 223. the closer we get to hunting season, the more difficult it is to find ammunition. I like to buy my hunting ammo during the summer so when hunting season arrives I am ready to go.
Being a survivalist means that survivalism is incorporated in every facet of my life. Whether its hunting, camping, gardening, cooking,,,, I try to relate how those activities would tie in with a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI survival situation.
On the other hand, how do I know survivalism is not just some type of obsessive compulsive disorder? If you obsess over something, is it some kind of disorder or mental illness?
Are people that obsess over making money mentally ill?
Are people that obsess over their car mentally ill?
Are people that obsess over work mentally ill?
Lets take that work example and talk about it for a minute. If being obsessed with work is a sign of mental illness, then most of the U.S. population has sick mind. Well, everyone besides the welfare parasites that is.
From the time the U.S. was founded, generation after generation has worked its fingers to the bone. Workers built the rail roads, they built the cities, they built the steel mills, they built the ships, and all with a type of self gratification that they were “working” and providing for their families.
Ever hear the term “workaholic”? These are the people that would rather spend time at work then with their families, these are the people that have committed their lives to working, these are the people how have committed their lives to something besides themselves.
With a title of “2012 prepping plans”, you might think this article is about what might happen in December of 2012. Well, that is not what this article is about. If you are worried about 2012, and you consider yourself a prepper or a survivalist, then you are doing it wrong. We should not bother ourselves with dates and predictions of doom and gloom. Our duty to our family and those close to us is to maintain a constant state of readiness. It is impossible to maintain a 100% constant state of readiness. To do so would require us to walk around with a gas mask and bio-suit. What we can do, is have a stockpile of food, water and the ability to protect our family and property.
The goal of this article is to look back on 2011, reflect, and then look forward to 2012. Where do you need to improve your preps, what areas have you neglected and what changes can you make in the coming year.
As 2012 approaches, some of us might be thinking about news years resolutions. Along with the typical lose weight and stop smoking resolutions, I would like everyone to post suggestions related to how prepared you and your family are. Where do you need to make improvements. On top of your own preps, what do you family members need to do to improve?
For example, my step-daughters have no can rotation system setup. I thought about buying them some wire racks and then help them get some kind of system going to help them keep their can goods rotated.
In 2011 I tried to focus on fishing supplies, getting a can rotation system working, stockpiling #10 cans and storing food in mylar bags.
Right now 3 superpails are taking up an entire bottom shelf of my shelving system.
I have 2 shelf units installed, on the bottom shelf I have:
3 super pails on the bottom shelf of one unit
Up to 108 cans on the bottom shelf of one unit
I would like a better way to store my superpails. But where do things balance out? Do 3 five gallon superpails equal 108 cans? Would I be better off storing the superpails in a closet and storing 216 cans on the bottom on the shelving units?
This video is how my shelves looked in October 2011. In the past few months there have been several changes made.
I would think to throw a special thank you out to the person who sent me a box of fishing gear. The person asked to remain unnamed, you know who you are, and Thank You.
Some of the stuff I have been stockpiling are trotlines, droplines (noodles), hooks, fishing line, weights,,, and so on. During the spring of 2011 I tried to buy a bunch of perch fishing stuff – small hooks and weights. I was hoping to take the grandkids and my kids fishing this past summer, and we went a few times.
In the summer of 2011 I ran a couple of trotlines and went fishing out on the Angelina river a few times. When June, July and August rolled around the weather got too hot to do anything outdoors. This summer was one of the hottest and driest on record here in Southeast Texas, and for Texas as a whole. Due to the extreme heat, I tried to limit my outdoor activities. The day time temps would hit 100 degrees before noon in July and August. With heat like that, being out on the boat fishing felt like being in an oven.
Plans for 2012
Some of the things I want to do in 2012 include reviewing my seed stockpile, buy a pressure cooker, plant a small garden in my backyard. Even if I do not plant a garden, I would like to buy beans or peas from the local farmers co-op. Then use the pressure cooker to store the beans and peas. Local farmers co-op is a great way to meet up with local farmers. Ask them what kind of crops they are growing, what kind of pesticide and fertilizer works best for what types of crops.
One of the things I really hope to do in 2012 is to plant a bunch of snap beans, and use a pressure cooker to store them in jars.
I would also like to make a homemade stew with a pressure cooker.
The ammunition at the camp needs to be stored in ammo boxes instead of just sitting on the shelf.
I would like to order a sardine can of 223 or 308.
One of the main things I wan to work on in 2012 is preserving my own food. Maybe even try to make jerky with my pit, which would be a good weekend project.
All right people, post your ideas, opinions, thoughts in this forum thread about prepping in 2012.
Copyright Kevin Felts 2011.
No part of this article may be reproduced without written permission from the author.