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Monday, June 9, 2014

Preppers vs Regular Folks

My initial plan for this post was to make it something like The Hunger Games. A competition could be constructed: a difficult course for the Preppers - put on a suit and tie and make your way through rush hour traffic to a job in some major metro area...downtown of course. Oh yeah, and the tie has to be a full-windsor. None of this easy tie a half-windsor garbage.

For the regular folks - walk from their home to the nearest shooting range. Once there, allowing no time for rest or EMT support, properly load a 7.62X39 clip with ten shots and then get that clip in the gun. Shooting you say – Why make them shoot? – I respond. Have you ever tried to get the clip loaded in a Ruger Mini-30? First time they pull the action back to load a round, the clip will most likely fall out. Shooting...we'll work on that some other time.

Yeah, I suppose we could hold a competition like above. But wouldn't that just feed into the stereotypes that already exist? (And I don't just mean for Preppers...)

What does a Prepper look like?

Sadly, many non-preppers think that's what a typical prepper couple looks like. Standing around in gas masks waiting for Armageddon to suddenly appear. Inside their fortified home, they have an arsenal of weapons, ready to launch a counter-attack on the zombies when they arrive. Right? Ha!

For the most part, the average prepper looks like you and me. They have a regular family, hold down a regular job, go to regular schools, and even shop at regular stores. They don't get hundreds of deliveries every week from PrepperDotCom or DoomsdayOrUs. They like baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and Mom. 

They may be in good shape or not. Some folks are more mentally and materialistically prepared than others. They have a bug-out plan. Or stockpiles of food like rice and beans. Perhaps 50 extra gallons of gas stored in their garage. Or maybe just an idea of what they plan to do, or where they plan to meet their family when the SHTF.

How do regular folks (the unprepared) look to Preppers?

Okay. perhaps. But not really. I have several distant relatives that could be called hard core preppers. The most common belief they have about the non-prepared is that they just don't understand why these people are so ignorant. Not of some impending danger that is about to happen, but just in general. There are a lot of things that can happen, a lot, and many of them are bad. 

Something as minor as an earthquake could have a substantial portion of our country (okay, California) in quite a bind in a matter of 30 seconds. Think of the aftermath; power outages, loss of food and water, medical facilities destroyed. What will you do if you don't have any sort of plan on what to do next? I'm not talking about something as all-out as a secret fortress, stockpiled with food and water for 100 days. How about where will you and your family meet up if the event finds everyone spread throughout the city when it strikes? Have you even thought about that?

I am not a Prepper!

Not per se. My wife and I, along with other family members, do have a bug-out location. We own weapons (and plenty of ammo) with which to protect ourselves. We have some (read that as a small amount) extra food at our off-site location to sustain us for a while. We'd have to pillage a bit for more supplies. Although I am sort of handy with a rifle and a bow, so we could have some sort of protein from time to time.

Preppers look at me and chuckle. Regular folks check out my weapon cache and usually say, "So, you're one of those kinds." I'm somewhere in the middle. But isn't that the point of this exercise? Aren't most people somewhere in the middle? The 80 percent? Yeah, we are. Ten percent of the folks out there are clueless; ten percent are full blown ready. Most of us have an idea of how to survive, but it's just not all that well planned out.

So when Armageddon finally does arrive, it's nice to know I'll have lots of company rummaging through food supplies by my side. For the first time in a long while, I can honestly say, I'm just average.

For the first time ever, I'm going to recommend my debut novel as a summer read for you. It portrays what happens to an average man when the SHTF. You can find it here: WWIV - In The Beginning.
Until next time, read on my friends.