Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Grey Man Concept, Invisibility, and How Conceal Carry Is Actually Prepping:

I'm on the road tonight sitting far from my family and home as I type this, and after a long day in the sky yesterday and a day of work today, I may be somewhat rambling, but bear with me.

There are a couple of concepts I was thinking about today as I had spent time at multiple airports, and it brought to mind one concept in particular that you may have read of or heard about: The Grey Man Concept.  The GMC put simply, is the art of blending into your environment and not standing out in any way or drawing attention to yourself.  You tend to see this concept discussed more on firearms or conceal carry boards, where it does tend to be a highly pertinent subject, especially when considering ways in which not to be scoped out while carrying a firearm on your person.  More on conceal carriers in a few, let's focus on the GMC for a moment.  As you'll find out, being Grey actually will serve the beginning prepper very well, with regard to...well, pretty much everything.  Let's point out a few things that someone utilizing the GMC would not do during a survival situation, or daily life:
  • The Grey Man has decided that his plan in an economic collapse will be to bug in.  The Grey Man knows it is important to have food stored away.  However, he will not have large pallets of food (such as bagged wheat or rice from a warehouse wholesaler) delivered to his house during the day.  Another way to see it: a GM wouldn't have his new 70 inch flatpanel plasma delivered during the afternoon directly after work, nor would he then leave the box from the television outside on his curb for all to see.  Instead, he'll bring food and supplies home in smaller increments, or make it look like a standard grocery trip as he brings bags into his house.  Neighbors who see him won't think "I have a pretty good idea where we can get some food, get me my shotgun!" when the lights go Out and they have hungry kids.
  • The Grey Man has decided his plan in a natural disaster includes bugging out.  The Grey Man will not choose bug out clothing that is SWAT black, military camouflage, or multicam, or that features tacticool internet gear-company tactical vests or military style backpacks covered in pouches bulging with AR-15 magazines. He knows this is a clear red flag to anyone who may driving by, such as a local law enforcement officer that he might be a Bad Guy.  Instead, he'll wear something like jeans, a dark colored jacket or sweater, and a backpack made for camping.  All the room, none of the "Hey, I might have multiple guns on my person, and clearly believe that I am a spec-ops SWAT team G-man in training, detain me, please!"
  • The Grey Man has decided to take his family out to the movies.  The Grey Man will not wear that free Ruger hat he was given after his last firearm purchase, nor the Glock shirt he was given by a relative that knows he's into firearms.  When he pulls up in his non-flashy car, it will not have a bumper sticker on the back that says "I dial 1911", nor does the house he and his family left have signs out front that say "If you can read this, you're in range!!" 
The concept to take away from this is simple: be invisible.  Conceal carry folks use this term to describe the efforts they go to in order to make sure they aren't "memorable".  Many more extreme Grey Men drive dull cars, live in nondescript houses, do not wear flashy jewelry or dress in a way that stands out.  In this way, they feel this puts them at a tactical advantage should they be in a store when robbers kick the door in and rush in brandishing guns.  They are essentially prepping themselves to be more effective defenders in such a situation, whereas if they were wearing clothing that advertised their firearm ownership to the world, they become an instant target.  Invisibility.  In fact, there are almost certainly Grey Men around you anywhere you go in public these days. 

So, during all your preparing, remember what I said about OPSEC.  Invisibility is a HUGE part of that.  Your preparations are a considerable expenditure of time and resources.  A lot, a lot of survival boards/blogs/videos will make a point of discussing firearms (don't worry, I'll get there myself) as a means of defending what's yours.  I don't disagree with this viewpoint, but see it this way.  By not making yourself a target, or a known source of supplies, you cut out a large portion of trouble that might otherwise head your way.  Because let's be candid for a moment.  Most people aren't Rambo.  They aren't chomping at the bit just waiting for the balloon to go up, so they can rush out and start mowing people down with that AR-15 and the 25,000 rounds they hoarded because EFF YEAH, IT'S THE END-TIMES!  Most people aren't killers.  I am not a killer.  You almost certainly aren't either.  I own many firearms, but at no time do I fantasize about shooting someone with them.  If I ever had to, I would.  But it's not something I look forward to, so if I can avoid it, I will.  Alright, end of that particular sermon.  Be invisible, hide your valuables, not just physically, but conceptually, as in, don't talk about them, or let people you don't know, know you have a stockpile of supplies at your house.  You may think this is me being dramatic, but honestly, there are plenty of stories posted up of people going on vacation and coming home to find their house was broken into and cleaned out while they were gone, because one of the family posted on Facebook or wherever that they were all going on vacation, yay!  Same concept here.

That's not just common sense, that's smart planning.  I myself utilize the GMC where I can in my life.  I purposely keep the exterior of my home nondescript, even though I'd love to cover the front with plants and such to make it unique.  Sadly, I am not able to do it much in my personal life, as I am what you might call a memorable personality.  I drive a flashy car (that I do not park in my driveway, but in the street across the way), and am a tall, loud person.  Just the way I'm made.  That said, when on the road, due to what I do for a living, I practice the GMC pretty strictly.  I dress in faded jeans and a tee-shirt.  I do not make eye contact with people, nor do I strike up conversations.  Yes, it is entirely at odds with who I am at home when surrounded by coworkers, friends, or family. But you just never really know with people these days.

I have typed way too much as usual, but hopefully, I've given you, the possible new prepper a few basic things to consider and/or add to your plans.  Stay safe out there.

- Unnamed Prepper

"Perhaps catastrophe is the natural human environment, and even though we spend a good deal of energy trying to get away from it, we are programmed for survival amid catastrophe."
- Germaine Greer    

Monday, February 27, 2012

Don't Skip the Planning Stage!

In the last post, I mentioned having a goal with regard to getting going on your preparations.  Having thought more about this, I think a better way to express that idea might be to have instead said: have a plan.  Yes, I'm aware that this seems self-explanatory, or that it seems to be a concept so simple and ingrained that it's a waste of time to even discuss it.  The problem is, these days, common sense isn't so common.  Actually, it isn't common at all anymore.  If someone who is new to prepping does a general search online for prepping/survival blogs, they may find and visit this page.  So, I feel like I should be writing for those folks who may be new to the subject and who may possibly stumble over a blog that was initially begun more for just myself and a small number of friends whom I might give the link to.  Well, if you are reading this, welcome!

Where was I?

Ah yes, planning.  Make no mistake.  The more I read, the more I discover how much I don't know, as well as how many layers there are to each subcategory of prepping.  It can be pretty mind-boggling.  Food storage, prepping on a budget, homesteading, sources of water, bugging out, bugging in, wilderness survival, urban survival, suburban survival, defense of your supplies, area, bugout/in location, bugout bags, first-aid, get-home bags, first-aid bags, which rifle is the best for WROL situations, which $500 knife do I need?  It just goes on and on.  But before you worry about any of that, come up with a plan of action.  Period.   

If you start out with a clear goal in mind, it will make your efforts a lot simpler, less jumbled, and less overwhelming.  There is an endless amount of information out there, and if you try to read all of it, you'll fail, first of all.  Secondly, you'll run into some serious scope-creep.  Example:

You've decided that your plan will primarily consist being prepared for "Bugging in"* in the event of natural disaster striking your area.  Alright, solid choice.  So, since you are planning to hole up at home, it's probably not a good idea to worry much about doing some of the more extreme preps you've seen people on Youtube talking about, such as geo-caching supplies along a planned route that you intend to traverse on foot to a bug-out location many miles away, or spending a disproportionate amount of your available funds on firearms and ammunition because you believe that you'll be fending off packs of leatherclad Road Warrior raiders for the week or so that power's out in your town.   Remember, your plan is to stay put.  So, focus your time, energies, planning, and (highly importantly) funds on sticking to your plan.  I will go out on a limb and say it's not really possible to plan for everything, so again, try to keep to a realistic scenario/concern.  How do you know what those are?  Well, like everyone else, I have my own opinions.  Let's talk about those.

Realistic Concerns:
  • Natural Disasters: You live in an area of the country that is prone to certain natural weather-based disasters.  A hurricane, tornado, or flood is a real possibility for you.  Plan your preparations accordingly.  You know that at some point power, water service, and cable will be restored to your area, so you just need to last through until that happens.  You may also have to leave the area due to your home being directly threatened.  So, it may not be the best idea to have five years of food and water squirreled away, because when the tornado hits, or the water rises, all that may be washed away.
  • The Economy: Fifteen years ago, I'd have placed this concern squarely in the "Never going to happen" column.  But not these days.  Many people have watched their retirement vehicles dry up, and are watching a currency that remains devalued versus the Euro, and they've watched unemployment remain high.  They have watched the news as the government (on both sides of the damn aisle!) rampantly spending money the country doesn't actually have, with nothing to show for it.  Examples include bailouts and "stimulus" packages that really only serve to reward those who shouldn't have been rewarded.  They've watched as fuel and food prices continue to climb.  They've watched the government take our country further and further into debt with foreign nations, many of whom do not like us (the Chinese are NOT our friends).  All of this combines to have people who actually watch the news and are able to read between the lines pretty concerned, and rightfully so.  The only downside to this, is that prepping for this will take years and will consume a lot of your financial resources.  Of course, might as well spend those dollars while they're still worth something! 
 UNrealistic Concerns:
  • The Rapture: Some sects of Christianity believe in an event called the Rapture wherein at some point, all dutiful Christians will be vanished away to Heaven to be at God's side.  Not through death, but as in, they will all suddenly just up and vanish, leaving their possessions, cars, and homes all just sitting there to be fought over by the non-believers.  I'm sorry, I just don't think or believe this is going to happen.  Not even close.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: Yes, I realize that many ZA folks argue that the zombie reference merely serves as a catch-all term for any sort of WROL/SHTF, and I'd accept that, if I hadn't met, seen online, or overheard at the gunshop all too many braying asses talking about how when the Zeds come, man, I'm grabbing my motherfucking shotgun bro, and it's gonna be fuckin' World War III, knowutImean???  Insert eyeroll here.  
  • TEOSAWKI: The big one, as far as I'm concerned: the end of society as we know it.  I am just going to be clear.  I think this one is highly unrealistic, despite it being one of the most prepped for concerns voiced by preppers/survivalists all over the place.  There are just so many roadblocks in place to this ever happening, that it's hard to know where to start.  I'll just mention a few reasons that come to mind first: 
    • First and foremost: Preppers make up a very small percentage of the total number of people in this country.  What that means, is that people are going to want their comforts back in the event of some massive government shut-down/degradation/end of rule-of-law.  That means, people will band together, and put together groups that fulfill the same functions as they enjoyed during the "before times" or whatever, and they will rebuild a democratic society.  So, all those survival people on the internet talking about how they'll be lone wolves living off the land shooting anyone who comes sniffing around their area, eventually, you're going to be a part of society again, whether you like it or not. So, I wouldn't slap on that cammo jacket and tac vest full of loaded AR mags, and run out the door just yet.
    • The simple understanding that Government has many different levels.  Some sort of federal government shut-down, doesn't mean "Fuck yeah, it's the end-times, gotta grab my bug-out bag, my assault rifle, and high-tail it to the woods!"  Local government will still be functioning, and you walking down the road with a backpack and an AR-15 in your hands will proooobably get you stopped by local law enforcement.  Also, vice versa.  Your town goes bankrupt, and the local government shuts down.  How long do you think it will be before the state governor sends in the National Guard? You probably don't want to be spotted sneaking through town in anything remotely resembling a militaristic outfit carrying a visible weapon.
    • A massive disaster that mimics Katrina, turning your area into Directly-Post-Katrina-NO: yeah, how long did that last, before the government showed up to restore order?  Yes, it took awhile, but it DID happen.  So, if you're dreaming of setting up a community where you're the overwarden just because you stockpiled more ammo than everyone else, be ready to get steamrolled when the government comes back in to set the place back to rights.   

There have been others, a few as covered on "Doomsday Preppers", such as viral pandemics, or perhaps the Yellowstone caldera going up and covering the country in ashes, or of course the ubiquitous sun putting out a huge burst that results in a massive EMP burst taking out the country's power grid.  Those events all have a very statistically low chance of happening, but if you've done a ton of reading and have convinced yourself otherwise, then by all means.  The ultimate point is, have a plan. After all, at the end of the day, your preps may just save you from an entirely mundane disaster, such as you or your spouse losing your job.  Whatever you do, look at the logistics first before you go out and start spending money on things you may not even need.  Stay safe out there.

- Unnamed Prepper

“We could do it, you know."
"Leave the district. Run off. Live in the woods. You and I, we could make it.”
― Suzanne Collins, "The Hunger Games" 

* Translation: in a disaster or civil-unrest scenario, your plan is to hole up in your home where all your supplies are stored and do your best to stay safe and hidden.

Friday, February 24, 2012

What Type of Prepper Am I?

I think you can see at this point that I'm a wordy goof.  I type fast and so these posts tend to run long.  Sometimes my writing may seem like a stream of consciousness, but all I can say is hey, have patience with me!  Onward!

As I made clear in my last post, I am not a professional prepper or survival expert, nor do I play one on TV.  However, I do a lot of reading and watching of videos in my spare time, probably more than is healthy.   So, I've come across quite a lot of information on a wide variety of subtopics dealing with prepping and survival.  What I've discovered is that not all preppers are created equal.  There are multiple types.  A short dissertation on what seem to be the most common types:

Gun/Knife/Gear Gurus
These are the guys you may have seen whose Youtube channels and blogs are primarily gun/knife/tacticool gear reviews, interspersed with posts about their particular philosophies about WROL or SHTF situations.  They post videos of themselves at the gun-range, or perhaps out on a tract of private land running around and talking about "tactics".  If you want to know who makes the best tactical vest, or the best folding knife, or perhaps the best assault rifle, then these are the guys you want to be watching, but be careful.  This is the group that has the biggest segment of "ex-military/special forces/law enforcement" claimants out of all of 'em.  These folks seem to think that survival is based primarily on whether or not you have the coolest gear.  The $1,800 AR?  A $800 fixed blade knife strapped to your leg?  A $350 SWAT team looking vest covered in pouches full of magazines?  Cool carbon-fiber knuckle gloves?  You're ready to take on the end of the world!  Yeah, no thanks.  I have always had the impression that some of these folks are missing the message entirely.  Living through a natural disaster, or a terrible collapse of society isn't cool, and it's not going to be fun or easy no matter how much you spent on tacticool gear.  Sorry.

Zombie Apocalypse People:
These are the folks who constantly talk about what they'll do "when the zombies come".  Everyone who may read this knows some people like this.  I certainly do.  "Man, when the zombies come, I'm going to grab my bag and my shotgun, and I'm going to totally set up on a rooftop, and I'm going to be all BLAOW and BOOM! FUCK YEAH! and BLAMBLAMBLAM with my Glock!"  Yeah, ok.  The issue I have with this particular group is that many of them seem to almost want society to fail, so they can live out their video game/zombie movie fueled fantasies involving lots of gunfire, headshots, and spent shells raining down on the camera lens.  They generally are the ones who talk about having a ton of ammo stockpiled "just in case".  Listen, there is nothing healthy about wanting society to end.  Fact is, the way I see it, no matter what happens that results in a situation where your preps come into play, it sucks.  And it will continue to suck.  It won't be fun or easy.  Furthermore, it's incredibly short-sighted, in my opinion.  Most of the kids spouting this noise on various forums seem not to really have given any thought on what will come after.  Fact is, there aren't many people in this country who can survive totally independent of any sort of society at all.  Well, I suppose the Amish could, but even they trade with the outside world for various things.  I am all for comments of "Heck yeah, I'm ready for when the zombies come!" while at the range with friends, I've made those comments myself.  But there are a lot of folks out there who actually believe this sort of thing could ever happen.  Yeah, I don't see it.

Rural/Wilderness/Small Town Survivalists:
These are the guys I think I partially identify with.  A lot of these folks live in rural areas, and possibly live on farms, or out on a few (or possibly many more) acres somewhere where they're able to really have a lot of storage, shoot on their private property, that sort of thing.  One thing that I appreciate about them is that their preparations are more of a way of life, rather than a hobby or end goal.  These folks, if they have video channels, post few videos concerning firearms or "tactics", and more videos concerning safe ways to store food, can vegetables, secure potable water, cultivate gardens, that sort of thing.  A lot of these folks are highly concerned with "going off the grid", essentially getting to a point where they have alternate means of water generation (through wells on their property or other means), power generation (through solar or some other means), and growing as much of their food as they can.  These folks aren't preparing for the end of society so much as they are working to ensure that a bad situation doesn't mean the end of life as they know it.  You have to respect that.  Will I ever be at the level that many of these folks are at?  Probably not.  But I respect it all the same. 

Disaster-Specific People:
I have been watching a show recently on the National Geographic channel called Doomsday Preppers.  There are a lot of folks out there who are all prepping for a specific disaster, some which are very possible (such as the collapse of the dollar in the face of the country's crushing debt), and others which I believe are highly improbable (such as the permanent end of society).  This group is pretty self explanatory, and is the one which I feel most describes the motivating force behind my own rapidly growing interest in prepping. 

My interest in prepping is currently pretty simple.  I live in an area of the country that is more prone to a certain type of natural disaster than others.  Hurricanes can (and have) thoroughly wrecked plenty of areas, resulting in power outages, food/water/supply shortages, and a complete disruption of normal daily life.  As everyone watched in horror, New Orleans got really barbaric after Katrina rolled through and destroyed the city, leaving thousands without basic necessities, and no way to get them.  I won't reiterate how bad it got.  All I know is that I don't want to be in that situation myself so, for me, my preps focus on enough supplies to last my family and I for up to a couple months staying home, with backup plans for retreating to one of multiple backup locations that I'll remain necessarily vague about.  And for me, this is fine.  I prefer to think that this is the most plausible scenario that I will realistically face in my area.  That's not to say that I won't take my preparations further, but for now, it's a starting goal for me. 

And that, really, is the main thing that I feel it's important to keep in mind.  Have a realistic goal.  See, it's easy to watch videos, and peruse survival forums and get amped up, and want to run out and blow $10,000 on survival gear, supplies, guns, and ammo.  But the thing to remember is that a lot of those folks who have Youtube channels with a couple hundred thousand followers...have been doing this for years. Some of them are bankrolled by various gear sites, which is how they get all those wonderful toys.  So, don't feel bad if the gear you have isn't up to the same standard.  To coin an adage usually used about conceal carry firearms, the best gear out there?  Is the gear you have right now.  If you're anything like me, all of your paycheck generally goes towards paying your bills/debts and living your life, going out to eat, seeing a movie, buying video games, and so on.  It's a change to start diverting some of your resources in order to start becoming prepared to face whatever natural or social disaster you may face in your area.  So, as with starting any new pursuit, have a realistic goal.  Stay safe out there.

- Unnamed Prepper

"Good history is a question of survival. Without any past, we will deprive ourselves of the defining impression of our being."
- Ken Burns

Thursday, February 23, 2012

OPSEC and Balance:

Before I get into my topic for today, I want to point out that when reading anything I write in this blog, keep in mind that these are only my opinions.  I am not a paid professional survivalist like Bear Grylls, nor am I active duty military or law enforcement.  In fact, I have never been military or law enforcement.  I do not own a security company, nor am I a consultant on a popular outdoor television show.

There, just wanted to clear all that up.  There will be no "argument from authority" going on here.  See, it sure seems the rage right now to attach some or all of the above to statements when making comments online about prepping as a means of trying to convince the viewer/reader that the posters Knows What They Are Talking About (tm).  I find this a bit disingenuous, if only because I have watched a LOT of bad videos lately on Youtube where people are discussing things like wilderness survival or firearms training and showing a lot of bad training such as muzzle-sweeping others in the video or suggesting you try plants with "the tip of the tongue" to see if they're poisonous, that sort of thing.  Ridiculous.  So, my advice would be to read everything (including this blog) with an open mind (along with a healthy dose of common sense) and don't be afraid to do further reading or research on anything you see on the internet.  It's also healthy to call bullshit when the situation calls for it.  I have seen a lot of that also, a blogger or YTer gathers a large following, suddenly the guy can do no wrong, and everything he says is gospel.  One major rule of thumb: if a guy says he was ex-special forces, stop listening and walk away.  99.9999999% of the people in your life who will tell you that, were never special forces.  Do not be fooled by a picture or video of a guy holding a tricked-out AR-15 while wearing a $90 tactical vest.  

With that caveat out of the way, let's move forward!

Today, I want to start with something that a lot of preppers on the Internet seem not to consider very often: OPSEC*. It seems like such a simple topic, but honestly, it really isn't.  As far as I am concerned, OPSEC should always be in mind.  After all, all those supplies and preparations you've been working to store are (and should be considered) wealth of a sort.  Should the worst come to pass, your preparations would be more valuable than just about anything else you possess.  Let me put it another way.  You wouldn't go around posting pictures of yourself and your house, and posting up your address if you'd just admitted that you had a stash of gold bars, now would you?  Who would do that?  The concept is the same with your preparations.  Always keep this in mind.  To touch on another post to follow here soon, people prep for many reasons.  One of those reasons is that they believe something bad will happen to either society and/or the economy, and the readily available resources found in stores everywhere will dry up.  So, it's in your best interests to ensure that you aren't making yourself a target for people who didn't make any preparations of their own.  Because that will happen.  If events like New Orleans during Katrina have taught us anything, it's this: people get really barbaric when basic resources they take for granted as being something they'll always have access to...suddenly dry up.  People will do nearly anything in order to protect and feed their families.  If they know that you and your family have things they need, they won't hesitate to come try to take them from you.  That's one of the main reasons I started this blog, instead of discussing prepping on my main blog.  I just don't see a need to advertise.  Also, this won't be the last you read on this subject from me.  I take this concept very seriously, and so should you.  Alright, end of sermon.

A second topic I want to discuss is one that many, many people out there in Internet Prepper-Land seem to forget, or worse, never bother considering in the first place.  That topic is Balance. 

Listen, I know that in many ways, prepping is fun.  You watch some disaster or zombie movies, start doing some reading on prepping, and it at first sounds like action camping.  Bug out bags.  Stockpiling cool stuff.  You start perusing neat flashlights, knives, camping equipment, fire-starters, etc.  You'll start buying firearms, and stockpiling ammo, and food, water, and toilet-paper, and so on.  You're becoming prepared to last through ANYthing!  You are ready for the zombie apocalypse, bring on the mayhem!  Well, here's one thing that cool survival blogs, Youtube videos, end-of-the-world movies always seem to skip over: there are considerations besides prepping.  In fact, these considerations could be thought of as "Prepping to prep".  What am I talking about?  A few simple things like your health: physical, mental, AND financial.  There are plenty of other important things, but any strong prepping (or life in general) plan starts with these three.

Although, it's fine (and very easy) to watch all these Youtube videos and read all these blogs, and then want to race right out to a camping store/big box store and start stockpiling supplies, remember that your physical, mental, and financial health comes first.  If you're severely overweight, it might be a good idea to take some of your prepping budget every month and invest in a gym membership.  Zombies can't catch you if you're able to run fast and jump over obstacles in your way.  If you've got a tooth that needs fixing, it might be a good time to go get that done.  You aren't going to find a cushy chair with soft music playing and plenty of top-shelf pain drugs to help with that bad cavity or cracked molar when a tornado tears through your small town and destroys everything.  That is not the time to be living with a toothache!  If you have some issues that are keeping you depressed or down mentally, talk with someone, get those ironed out.  A good mental outlook and strong personal fortitude will be worth more than nearly any other prep you have in a WROL situation.  If you are carrying $10,000 worth of credit card debt, it may be a good idea to start paying that down before you read about prepping, get excited, and run off to spend a ton of money on cool gadgets like knives, guns, ammo, or stockpiles of freeze-dried food. Sure, you want to be ready for zombies, or a bad storm.  But don't forget that you may also want to buy a new car, or a home one day!

I hate to say it, but these are highly important things to consider, and yet, something that most people don't.  They don't think about these basics, because they aren't glamorous, or exciting.  But honestly, look at the people who make it to the end of disaster movies.  If you don't look like that, or are at least in good physical shape, how can you expect to be able to meet all the challenges of the end of the world as we know it?  If you can't even pay your electric bill this month, do you really need to be buying another case of ammo that is going to sit in your closet?  Not much fun counting how many cans of peas you have, having to do it in the dark.  So, in short, while you're preparing for the next world, don't forget that you still live in this one.  It's not glamorous, it's not exciting, but it's just good common sense.  Balance in all things.  Any realistic prepping plans need to include the big three: physical, mental, and financial health.  Start working on these things, and you'll be much more prepared than many Americans to see through a bad situation.  And by many, I mean most.  Stay safe out there.

- Unnamed Prepper

“People will do amazing things to ensure their survival.”
- Patricia Briggs, The Hob's Bargain

*OPerational SECurity

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

In the Beginning...

I suppose it had to happen sometime.  I have needed an outlet for this subject for quite some time, a subject that is quickly growing to be a major topic of discussion among people who, ten years ago, would haven't have ever admitted interest in it publicly.

I know, cryptic right?  What could I be speaking of?  Simple.  I'm speaking of Prepping, as it's officially come to be known.  Prepping, survival, getting ready for "WROL"*, even hoarding, this subject is called multiple things, but in the past few years, Prepping has become the accepted term for what is a way of life for some, a passing fad or interest for others, and possibly a new subject of interest for still others.  Thanks to the Internet, preppers have long since been able to congregate on various forums, chat rooms, message boards, and even video sites like Youtube where they share information, strategies, and methodologies, with each other and sympathetic minded folks who are looking for helping in getting started themselves.

I myself have become one of those people.  I am not crazy.  I am a lot like you, the reader, in that I am a college educated tax-paying citizen.  I go to work, I come home, I kiss my wife as she arrives home from work, and we plan dinner.  We read, watch television, surf the internet, play video games, go out with friends on the weekends, and in most respects are ordinary.  So, why am I here?  Why are you reading this?  Again, simple.  I have an online presence like most others do, with a Facebook page, G-Chat, other blogs, forums I post regularly on, where I don't feel that my surging interest in Prepping would be well received.  The problem is that a lot of people still think many preppers are either doom-and-gloom mongers, crazy anarchists, or militants who can't wait for Society to collapse so they can become the leaders of the new band of crazy.  Well, I wish I could argue that those people don't exist in the prepper community, but the fact is, they do.  I don't want to be lumped in with the folks that give this topic a negative connotation so, I have created this blog as an outlet for me to discuss information that I have found, and which may at some point serve as a reference for me if I am looking for some concept, strategy, or factoid I may have forgotten.  There is seriously a lot of information out there. 

Speaking of the various flavors of prepper, they seem to fall into a few different categories, which I will probably detail in an upcoming post.  At the end of it all, I don't expect many to read this blog, or even find it, to be perfectly candid, but sometimes we don't do things for others, or for recognition.  Sometimes, we just do things because we feel a need to do them.  This blog is mine.

- Unnamed Prepper

"And while the law of competition may be sometimes hard for the individual, it is best for the race, because it ensures the survival of the fittest in every department."

Andrew Carnegie

* Without Rule of Law - the term that encapsulates the idea that Society at large will collapse without government, police, or any ruling body to keep it flowing in a peaceful, productive manner.