Preparing For The Worst

As I write this, Florida is bracing for another hurricane. Being a resident of Palm Coast, we tend to disregard most of these threats.

Something about the ocean currents along our coast seems to deter landfall. We have been historically lucky and most severe storms break around us.

It seems like wherever we live, we have ended up dodging bullets like this.

In Perry, Georgia, where we lived for almost almost 18 years, tornadoes were notorious for avoiding us. People there tell stories of them coming near the city limits and turning away.

In Lizella, Georgia, where we lived for 11 years, we witnessed more tornadoes. One cut a path directly towards our house. It lifted less than a mile away and jumped over us, landing another mile away. Others came around but never did any more damage than dropping a few dead trees. Nothing ever hit the house.

In Macon, Georgia, similar story. One street over from us had entire houses leveled and a trail carved through the neighborhood. Only one tree was damaged on our land. We spent the next few days with chainsaws, cleaning up the neighborhood, but only an hour on our yard.

Even when we were on the trip to Belize, Hurricane Earl came right over us, but did absolutely no damage to the little cabana we were sleeping in.

I could honestly sit here and fill several articles with stories like that. One after another tells of times when something bad should have happened, and didn’t. Call it whatever you like, but I am still here.

We have gotten a little slack in preparing for disasters. Even now, with a major hurricane headed towards us, I don’t feel the need to board us the house.

However, there’s another impending catastrophe that I am concerned about.

While I have tried to keep this site free of the political garbage and arguments, the fact is that it affects all of us. No matter which way the election goes, I anticipate a certain amount of fallout. It feels like half of the country is planning a celebration, while the other side is preparing for war.

I have seen some nasty campaigns and elections in my time, but nothing like the mess out there now. This has me more concerned than the threat of the ocean blowing into town.

As I have mentioned before, I believe in planning and preparation, even though we have been extremely fortunate over the years. Living in areas where hurricanes and tornadoes are regular events, it seems logical to prepare for those, even if you don’t think the “stuff will hit the fan” soon.

I am not necessarily agreeing with the hardcore preppers who have underground bunkers and enough ammo to fight a war, just saying that if we have any sense at all, we should give it some thought.

Proverbs even says, “A wise man foresees the evil, and avoids it.”

So, what preparations are rational and not a declaration that we expect a dystopian world to unfurl before us? Simple. What do you need from day to day, and what do you need if the televised upheaval makes its way to your hometown?

Food.
Whatever you eat on a regular basis, add more. When we see Duke’s mayonnaise on sale, we buy extra. Southern blood craves that stuff. I have a deep sense of peace, seeing three or four extra jars in the pantry.

Recently, we discovered Boxed.com and have been ordering bulk food. It’s generally cheaper than grocery stores, and I can maintain my moderately antisocial lifestyle without visiting Walmart. For other supplies, I have been fueling an Amazon addiction.

We figure out what meals we could eat several times a week and stock a little extra. Rice, beans, canned fruit and veggies, non-refrigerated almond milk, pasta and sauce… Stuff we already eat, just a little extra when it’s on sale each trip.

There are hundreds of sites on storing food. Read a few. Even a hurricane has the potential to leave you stranded for a few days without power. Political upheaval could cause similar problems. Why go hungry if you don’t have to?

Water.
From what I have read, 2 liters of water, per day, per person, is the right ballpark. More is better. Again. Plenty of sites out there on storing water. Read some. Especially if you have kids at home, for their sake, plan ahead.

Medical Supplies.
You don’t have to rob a pharmacy, just pick up a few extras. Bandages, antibiotic ointments, pain relievers, hydrogen peroxide… Stuff like that is a good start. Even a spider bite can turn into a severe infection, why wouldn’t you have the basics on hand? Most dollar stores are a cheap source of the basics.

Artillery.
Make your own call on whatever you believe. Personally, when I see an episode of walking dead, I see an extreme example of how humans react to crisis. It’s not the zombies, it’s the neighbors that become the real problem. One report I read claims that in the even of a national power grid failure, cannibalism would be a legitimate threat within 30 days.

Think about rioting over questionable deaths involving virtually unknown people who did unverified things. Then think about stupid stuff, like people being trampled over the latest toy on Black Friday. That should be enough to make you consider the safety of your family. Make your own call. We did.

There’s more, but too much for one article. Just think about the safety of your own family and plan accordingly. Even a simple storm can knock out power for a few days. At least be prepared enough to keep your kids fed during a week or more.

And, before the obvious comments roll in… Don’t message me from a $600 phone, in front of your massive TV, while wearing name brand clothes, while eating take-out, and tell me you can’t afford it.

In light of the current global political situation, you can’t afford not to.

M. Erik Matlock is a self-professed recovering knucklehead with more than 500 articles and four books in print. He shares his hard-earned wisdom at ErikMatlock.com, ProSoundWeb.com and through his books, which are available at Amazon.

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