Posts Tagged With: novels

SURVIVAL

I’ve always had a survivalist mentality. I think it stems from being raised on the land, with few amenities, and dependence on what you grew or raised to live. Subconscious fear may have played a role as well since we were put through air raid drills in grammar school. We were  instructed to hide our heads under our desk when the air raid siren went off during the Korean war. Of course, we now know hiding our heads under our desk  wouldn’t have protected us. The powers that be probably knew it then, too. It was just feel good stuff.

During the 1970’s, people were building bomb shelters in their yards for fear of a nuclear bomb from Russia.  We didn’t build a bomb shelter in our front yard during the 1970’s, but, I have to admit, we pondered the idea.  We read in the newspapers the way to survive nuclear fallout from a bomb was to fill your tub with water, stay inside, put foam rubber over the windows and doors, and buy a lot of flashlights and sterno. We were instructed to stock up on basic foods like rice and beans, but only canned goods. We took it seriously, and did stock up, except you couldn’t buy a flashlight or a battery within a day of the announcement.

Again, fear is in the air. Bomb shelter sales are up 1,000 %. Membership in  giant communal bomb shelters on the plains states, like Kansas, are selling like hot cakes, and many of them aren’t even built yet.( I read HOAX.)
Health food stores and pharmacies have run out of iodine as people stock up on the stuff even though “experts” say it isn’t needed. But then, various “experts” have lied to us so many times in the past, and we know many expert’s opinions are for sale to the highest dollar. Why would we believe them? Oh, I’m so cynical. Yes!

Germany has decided to wean itself off nuclear power. But, it won’t help unless  all countries do it. Nuclear Power is like playing with extremely, costly, destructive dynamite. But, there is no warning or protection from fallout  if you live anywhere near one, except to get farther away.  If a huge comet or asteroid hit the earth, with  hundreds of nuclear power plants in the United States and a couple thousand of them around the world? Oh, boy!  There is no protective measures anyone, governments or communities or individuals can take against a cataclysmic event that sets up nuclear winter.

Wars all over the mid-east have religious fanatics predicting that Armageddon is at hand and they are giving a precise date in May. I’ve lived through these predictions before as well. I don’t remember the year when a large group of people sold their worldly goods and waited on a mountain top to be brought up into heaven at the given date of the end of the earth. How do these people reconcile their lives after it doesn’t happen? And, that, or a similar event has been repeated several times in my lifetime.

Fear is understandable. We live in troubled times. But, there are practical things one can do to keep yourself comfortable and relatively safe. First is to just enjoy each day, and do what you normally do. Live one day at a time. You can’t do anything about it anyway. Its like taking an airplane flight. It could drop in the ocean, but you still take the flight.

Practical measures you should always take: Keep a decent stock of  staple goods on hand. Always, flashlights, batteries, candles, and simple medical supplies like aspirin, band aids,bandages, burn and antibiotic salves. Its easy enough to  keep a  couple gallons of distilled water in your garage for emergency use. A couple five gallon cans of gasoline might be helpful if you can safely store them. In your car? Keep a first aid kit, a couple blankets, flashlights and water, an umbrella, extra socks and lightweight jackets, a couple flares, matches, rope and a tarp. It sounds like a lot, but it can be packed tightly into a backpack and jammed into the corner of your trunk. This isn’t to protect against a nuclear event, but any event that leaves you stranded, be it a storm, a road closure, or a flat tire on a lonely road. Then, hope for the best.
When you have a  chance, read George Stewart’s novel, Earth Abides. It will give you a blueprint on how to survive anything. Its out of print, but available in those old book stores that deal in out-of-print novels. And, its based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Its an eye opener even though it was written in 1931.

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