And now I have that old DP jingle stuck in my head. You probably do too. You’re welcome.
What is a “prepper?” The broadest definition, of course, would be “someone who is prepared.” Prepared for what? Well, that depends on a number of things: your political persuasion, your awareness of current events, and/or your level of insanity.
I only mention this last because, well, we’ve all encountered crazy people in our lives. That, however, is often open to interpretation. Is there anything inherently wrong in being over-prepared? And over-prepared, in itself, is also open to speculation.
Most “preppers” that I know don’t use that word to describe themselves; they are simply waiting and watchful. And they’re getting ready. Most are conservatives; most pay attention to things that are happening. Are they right to be concerned? Yes.
As I explained it to someone who told me about my seemingly batshit crazy cousin, who’s running around advertising for “help” and living in his basement and burying things in the backyard, anything could happen – it doesn’t have to be apocalyptic.
With rising prices, you might not have access to or be able to afford food, running water, utilities, gasoline, and so forth. Or war could break out – or looting, or rioting. Or, too, civilization as we know it could completely collapse. Yes, it could happen. Certainly. Some preppers believe that it will, sooner rather than later.
So, in a nutshell, you could be ready, or not.
What could you do? Without, of course, triggering the insanity-radar of your neighbors, family, law enforcement, etc.?
First, you need to have some storage capabilities. Your garage, a shed you can lock up, the laundry room, under your bed, in a closet, or even the very top kitchen cabinet shelves that you don’t really use.
The next part is a little tricky and depends upon your beliefs. If you think SHTF is imminent, you better step up your game. If you think that you maybe/probably have some time, then keep reading. I don’t consider myself a prepper, although plenty of my friends use that word to describe me. I won’t pretend to be an expert, but I will help you develop a plan for “just in case.”
Do you use coupons? Does your local grocery store have good specials from time to time, like ten items for $10? That’s when you stock up, on things like canned goods, jugs/bottles of water, instant seasoning packets, tomato sauce, beans, peanut butter, nuts, granola, and so forth. You can find much more comprehensive lists elsewhere, this is just the start.
While you’re stocking up on food and water, don’t forget personal care items: deodorant, toothpaste, toilet paper. I’m not saying go crazy, but hey – these are things you use every day. I hope.
Take a few minutes to think about how you would live if the electric grid went down. Propane for cooking? Wood? Charcoal? What about if the water supply was contaminated? Containers, bottled water, filtration kit, purifying tablets – have these things handy.
Cash, too. No electric means no businesses open, no ATM. And gasoline – when it drops in price, since they like to tease us from time to time, fill up your tank at least halfway. Keep a few gas cans in the garage. Batteries, flashlights, blankets – think about an emergency kit that you might keep in your car. Just more items.
I certainly haven’t covered everything, but it’s a start. And, naturally, I have to mention my books, Reduced and Reused. Abby and her gang had some advance notice of SHTF, and they were prepared. They were ready to bug out and go live in the woods, with quite a few gadgets and comforts that they otherwise might not have had ready. You can certainly bug out, if you have to leave your home, but the gist of it is this: what next?
If you aren’t ready, it’s not as if you’d be able to whine and moan online or over your cell phone or listen to the latest news. You’ll be on your own, with your family perhaps, and have to make do. It’s much easier if you’re prepared, even if it’s just for a week. And if nothing happens, well, you’ve done your shopping for the next however-many months.
And if you don’t tell anyone, they won’t think you’re crazy.