Back in 2010 I started listening to podcasts and following blogs related to the preparedness/survivalist movement. Anyone who’s had to deal with a power outage that lasted more than a few hours knows that you might need a few candles and extra flashlights and batteries in addition to the one in the next to the last drawer in the kitchen that you can never seem to find when you need it. The writers and voices talk about the need for redundancy in preparation for personal as well as community disasters. That’s all well and good. I have a few extra batteries for the flashlights and a few candles.
The problem is that I approached prepping the same way I approached the rest of my consumer behavior…unconsciously. I didn’t look at the amount of space I have in the house to determine where and how to store things. I didn’t think about exactly what I needed and how I was going to use it. The place was still a huge mess back then. So anything put aside as a preparedness item ended up on the pile. I started working on a 72-hr kit and buying two or three of something when I had a few extra dollars. I even took a couple of classes in survival at a school down the road. Then I had a couple of reversals happen and all the “disposable” income I was using to pay for preps ended up going to a car payment and we had a major illness in the family which put my training schedule on the back burner.
As I’ve been removing things from the house, the twos and threes of things have become ones and in some cases I’ve taken all of certain things to Goodwill. I still believe in the philosophy. G-d knows that the ATM network in town goes down on occasion and having a couple extra bucks in the pocket is a good thing. I am really liking the openness now and being able to walk over and touch a wall without stepping on something. So I don’t want to stockpile or warehouse preps. I might put up an extra shed in the backyard next year. I don’t know yet. I just don’t want to keep racks or stacks of stuff around that I’m going to have to dust.
TEOTWAWKI is largely theoretical. A collapse could happen. Hell in some circles the world has ended several times in the past five years with the financial shenanigans and bailouts. I am starting to view my cluttered, but less so, home as a very real disaster that I need to keep recovering from. The priority is clearing my living space and seeing that it stays that way. If zombies come I have a claw hammer right where I can get at it.