If you’ve been watching the news or YouTube or The History Channel, you’ve most likely run across a piece on “prepping” or “preppers”.
Many consider prepping or preppers as a bunch of fearful Doomsday Proponents, Backwoods Hillbillies living in plywood shacks in Idaho, Conspiracy Nuts, or Para-Military Wannabes running around in the woods in their camo outfits and shooting anything that moves with one of the twelve AR-15s they own.
While some of this may be true, the average prepper probably lives next door to you and is quietly storing away food, medical supplies, camping gear, weapons, and solar-powered do-dads. And I get it… it’s the “weapons” thing that bothers most folks. I’ll get to that part in a bit.
First, I’d like to talk about what these preppers are preparing for.
If you’re a person of average intelligence, you have at the very minimum, auto insurance and some kind of home or renters insurance. Why? In case unforeseen disaster strikes. You’ve most likely learned from past experience and from the experience of others, that it’s wise to prepare for unforeseen future disaster. It actually brings you peace of mind knowing you’re covered should some future calamity befall you.
And that’s what prepping is simply about; preparing for some unforeseen future disaster. In my opinion (biased of course), that’s not a nutty or far-fetched idea at all. On the contrary, pretending that everything is always going to be OK and that nothing will ever change is a nutty and farfetched idea in my opinion.
So, what might some of those “unforeseen future calamities” include? So glad you asked! Let’s start with a level 1 event (not very bad at all) and work our way to a Level 5 Apocalyptic Wasteland event.
1. YOUR POWER GOES OUT - This HAS happened to you and will happen again.
If you live in the Virgin Islands, it happens twice a week. Thanks, WAPA! It doesn’t take a genius to realize that you should have some candles stored somewhere, some extra batteries, maybe even a gas-powered emergency generator should the power be off for an extended time. If you see the value in this, and you’ve acted on this thought by storing things to help you in this event, congratulations! You’re a prepper. I’ll be sending you your complimentary tinfoil hat in the mail tomorrow.
2. YOUR POWER GOES OUT FOR AN EXTENDED TIME - Sometimes, nature gets out of hand. A violent windstorm, extended blizzard conditions that last for days, a flood, a hurricane/tornado touches down in your neighborhood, a small earthquake knocks the power out in your general area. In these instances, the power companies may take as long as a few days to get your power back. If you’re without a generator, all the food in your freezer and refrigerator is basically wasted. You may be without water for a time. What are you going to do when you hurry down to the grocery store to buy some bottled water after work and find that everything’s been cleaned out by panicked neighborhood shoppers? Not a bad idea to store some extra food and water just in case.
Ask the folks in New Orleans about how fast FEMA can supply your city with life-saving food and water, or Puerto Rico, or Haiti, or the entire east coast of the U.S. during flooding there, or the folks on the west coast besieged by forest fires every year now. See what I mean?
3. A NATURAL OR MAN-MADE DISASTER GETS COMPLETELY OUT OF HAND - Let the looting begin! Rioting, buildings burning, streets erupting in violence, police unavailable. In New Orleans, during Katrina, when the looting got to the point of being unstoppable and was spreading across the city, the wealthy district of the city immediately hired ex-military security forces to guard the entrances to their neighborhood. Their homes were untouched. Many businesses during riots have patrolled their buildings and property with armed security personnel brandishing assault rifles and the results were the same as above. I guess the looters didn’t want those flatscreen TVs so bad after all.
Can you afford to hire security? Probably not. but you can BE your own security. Yes. This leads me to the “weapons” argument. I personally am a gun owner and an advocate for
safe gun ownership. I DO NOT own an assault rifle and probably won’t. I’ve shot them on the firing range, I gaze longingly at them at gun shows, and I have good friends who own 157 of ‘em with 10,000 rounds of ammo. I’m fine with that because their collections are safely locked away and my friends are (relatively) safe and sane individuals.
As far as firearms are concerned, I personally own a few semi-auto pistols and a semi-auto shotgun for home defense. I figure if I need more than that, I’ll simply retreat from my home with weapons by my side and head for a “bug-out” location that’s safer at that moment. If I ever end up in a firefight with my neighbors that involves thousands of rounds of ammo and seventeen assault rifles, I’m not doing this prepper thing correctly! I’ll write about “bug-out” locations and why your home SHOULD NOT be a fortress in later articles.
All that being said, I believe you need at least one firearm in your home and you need to know how to use it. Why? Because bad people who want to harm you and your family have them. As long as that’s the case, you need to even up those odds. Plus, a police officer is too heavy to carry around with me, so if I leave said officer at the station or in his patrol car, he might take 5 minutes to arrive at my home after I call him into action. The problem is, it only takes a bad guy… sorry, or bad girl… or bad ze… 1 minute or so to kill me and my family should they have a gun. I’m not relying on the police to arrive in time in a home intrusion scenario.
Besides, shopping for a gun is… shopping! They have LOTS of pink guns out there as well. I kid you not. And lemme tell you, criminals HATE being shot with a pink gun! It’s just embarrassing. So if you don’t have one, go shopping! Most gun stores provide training as well, or can recommend someone who does provide firearms training.
Now that’s just a fun afternoon spent right there. Get out of the house. Live a little! Take a gun class/lesson with your new, hot pink .380 semi auto pistol. Yes, you are a badass! And, also yes, Team Apocalypse will be offering gun training and events soon.
4. A PROLONGED ECONOMIC COLLAPSE - Remember the Covid lockdown? 2 years later our economy is still trying to recover from a virus that had a lethality of less than 1% of the population. Can you imagine a virus with a 5% lethality? A 20% lethality? I can. And that’s why I’m a prepper. When the food riots start downtown because the delivery trucks are no longer delivering, when protesting rioters are lighting cities ablaze, when the hospitals are overrun, when the police are afraid to come to work because armed gangs are filling the streets, when the power grid fails, when the military is being called upon to restore order, I’ll be sitting in my front room, eating popcorn, watching it all on TV via a solar-powered generator.
Well, more likely I’ll be checking up on all my Team Apocalypse family, making sure everything’s OK, coordinating evacuations, home defense, and food prep until the disaster period settles down. We can’t get through a time like that alone, people. And lucky for us, we no longer have to! You’re welcome…
And that’s just one scenario. I won’t even mention the severe recession, if not downright economic depression coming our way, wherein thievery, robbery, and violence will skyrocket, or a terrorist attack of some kind, or what would happen to the stock market and your 401k should China attack Taiwan, or… Best just go make yourself a sandwich and enjoy your day. But throw in a little prepping action too!
5. WORLDWIDE MELTDOWN - A worldwide meltdown can only be caused by the most dangerous, organized crime, street thugs known to man - our governments. Let me give you just ONE example out of a thousand different negative scenarios that could take place tomorrow that could send the world spinning into chaos. It involves our old pal and favorite dictator of all time, Vladdie “Putin on the Ritz” Putin. Now old Vladimir is sick and tired of the U.S. supplying Ukraine with advanced weaponry and intelligence. Without support from Uncle Sam, Ukraine would be “Back In The USSR” as we speak (shoutout to the Beatles). So, let’s say Mr. Putin takes one of his nukes and puts it aboard an innocent-looking fishing vessel on our southern Gulf Coast and fires it into the atmosphere, exploding it somewhere over Texas/Louisiana/Mississippi. The resulting EMP (electro-magnetic pulse) blast would take out the electrical grid in the entire south, in Texas, and most likely cause a chain reaction, shutting down the entire U.S. electrical system. In order to avoid WW 3, he then asks some Middle Eastern Jihadists to take credit for it, and let’s face it, many groups in that category would LOVE to take credit for such a coup against “The Great Satan”.
Now, what happens? Well, let me allow best-selling author, Kyle Mills to explain.
Years ago I wrote Darkness Falls, a novel about a group of terrorists planning an attack on the world’s energy sector. Their plot ends up being foiled, but I’ve never stopped wondering what would have happened if they’d managed to pull it off. Without power, how would I heat my house in the dead of the Wyoming winter? How would food be produced and transported to my local grocery store? How would water be pumped conveniently to my house for drinking and sanitation?
Fast-forward almost fifteen years to Total Power and I’ve finally gotten a chance to explore those topics. What if, instead of preventing terrorists from taking down America’s electrical grid, my hero had to deal with the aftermath of a successful attack? How would he handle having to literally operate in the dark, without the technology and support he’s come to rely on? But mostly, what impact would all this have on him? His country is collapsing and it’s possible that neither he—nor anyone else—can save it.
The most interesting thing about this book is that virtually everything in it is true. When I say a congressional report concluded that ninety percent of Americans would die if a blackout lasted a year, rest assured that the report really exists. When I detail how little has been done to prepare for an assault on our grid, that’s based on actual assessments by the government, blackouts we’ve already suffered, and less devastating attacks we’ve absorbed in the past.
In the end, my investigation into this scenario was every bit as terrifying as the coronavirus research I did for Lethal Agent.
So, there you have it. An EMP taking out our electrical grid would also shut down the electrical system of every car, truck, airplane, motorcycle, and many ships within its blast radius. There is NO WAY we’d be able to repair the entire grid in less than 6 months. 6 months of delivery trucks side-lined, no refrigeration, no lights, no heat, no grocery stores, no way to cook food electrically.
Millions, and I mean millions, of citizens would starve. Military experts who have seen situations like this in Venezuela, Africa, and Eastern Europe inform that within 72 hours of conditions such as this, people begin to “lose their humanity”, looking for food and goods to steal, forming gangs, and implementing violence in order to survive.
We are just 72 hours away from our civilization collapsing! That’s frightening.
Meanwhile, everyone and I mean EVERYONE has completely forgotten Ukraine. Europe comes to a screeching halt as they pivot and focus on supporting the catastrophe taking place in the U.S. And then, ol’ Vladdie walks right into Ukraine and probably Poland and other nearby states as well with little to no interference from NATO. Let’s just hope he’s not reading this.
But that’s a somewhat farfetched scenario. Most likely, our power grid will simply just collapse on its own cuz we’re not taking care of it, and it's antiquated and dangerous and fragile. No conspiracy needed in order to starve to death.
Or a solar flare from the sun could cause an EMP blast that takes out our grid. It already happened in the U.S. in the 1800s. Luckily, the only electrical component available to be destroyed back then was our telegraph lines. And they all did cease to work! Imagine if that same thing were to happen today. Bye Bye.
Or a computer hacker, foreign or domestic, could take out our grid. As I said, the possibilities are nearly endless.
People tell me all the time, “Man, do you really believe all that? Aren’t you in a state of depression 24/7 focusing on all this negativity?”
My response is, “Nope. Quite the opposite, really. I’d actually be frightened if I WERE NOT preparing for an emergency on any one of these 5 levels. It’s like driving without insurance or living in a home in an earthquake zone with no insurance. How nervous would you be every day under those scenarios? Like a long-tailed cat in a room fulla rockin' chairs!”
What are the odds of a scenario 4 or 5 happening? Not high. Probably about the same as the odds of you being in a catastrophic accident. You could really save a lot of money by not purchasing insurance, but how well are you going to sleep at night?
Personally, I sleep like a baby. If something horrible DOESN’T happen in the future, no one’s gonna be happier about that than I. If some catastrophe DOES happen, I’m as prepared as I can be. I do what I do til I can’t do it no mo’. That’s my philosophy.
I’m going to Cleveland to see the NFL and Rock and Roll Halls of Fame at the end of the month, and I’ll also be visiting my buddy Elvis and family while I'm in Ohio, as well as traveling to Nashville with my good friend Ryan and Andi for some waffles, music, and NASCAR. It’s gonna be an epic vacation filled with Doc Dan’s Tiny Little Adventures (see my YouTube site under DOC DAN) **shameless plug**.
I’m not letting the times dictate my mood or my life. I’m gonna do what I do til I can’t do it no mo’.
This is why I prep. So I can get out from under the shadow of the times we’re living in. I’d love it if y’all would join me. Thank you to Team Apocalypse for jumping on board, and I’ll yack atcha later!