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Wednesday, January 16

What will you do...

When the dark age arrives (probably 6 or 7 A.B. - after Bush) and you find yourself not having those things you can’t live without, what are you going to miss the most? What 10 items would you consider a must have? By 10, I mean ten families of items that you would already have in stock. It would be exceedingly difficult, if not terminal, for most Americans to do without 90% of their everyday items, in essence becoming a resident of a third or fourth world country overnight.

I’m not talking in this scenarios right now about stocking food or water, heat or a place to sleep, or electricity or sewerage for this initial experiment; those are a given that we all need or would like to have, but in this, you only have them in limited, basic amounts. You can have only enough to barely get you through each day; minimal food, water, heat, electricity and sewerage with no indication of how long the disaster, recession or depression will last. For now, presume you will have at least those very limited necessities – for a while. Here are some suggestions for items and extras in some categories most Americans don’t want to or can’t live without.

…Toilet Paper; a whole lot of toilet paper!

…Soap and detergent: to try to stay somewhat respectable if you venture into the outside world, especially around others when you push your grocery cart home from the market; and detergent to clean your clothes.

…About a year’s selection of basic clothing including underwear and especially socks and decent shoes, an absolute necessity.

…A portable radio with weather and tv; and rechargeable batteries with a solar trickle recharger; copious flashlights and especially replacement bulbs; extra rechargeable batteries.

…A medical box with medical paraphernalia: band-aids, peroxide, disinfectants, some generic antibiotics, anti-diarrheal tabs, ant-acids, aspirin, eye wash, etc.; an extra pair of glasses if you use them.

…A bicycle for emergency transportation with extra baskets for extra carrying capabilities.

…Books; some form of low energy-use music player such as a portable mp3 player; some games and a deck of cards.

…Lots of writing material; many, many pens and pencils.

…A laptop with WiFi and extra solar rechargeable batteries; probably a cell phone.

…Some method of getting rid of garbage that is produced.

The above items may be considered minimal expectations of middle class essentials. Of course, in the event of a real problem, you may not have the luxury of housing, water, food shelter, power, and a means to eliminate your waste, including human. Deciding what you might need to maintain a modicum of existence you can live with is highly personal. Needless to say, life will change more drastically for those used to an even higher middle class life style.

So put yourself into this situation. First, presume an inconvenient scenario requiring the “luxurious” types of items listed above and how your life would be affected. Next, decide what you would LIKE to have when the Bushian World kicks in. Finally, list the items you feel you will absolutely need and want for your new life. Remember, you may not have a lot of time to acquire those things if you wait too long.

To prepare for such an eventuality requires a lot of forethought. Do you prepare optimistically for minimal duration or should you get ready for a “Mad Maxian World?”

What would you stash away for that inevitable time?

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