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Discussion Starter #1
Any long term preppers had their "disaster" happen and still feel not ready?

I've been preparing for economic collapse for years and my family is in as good a condition to weather the coronavirus storm as we could be, given our circumstances. I imagine we're in better shape than the vast majority of Americans.

But I still feel like I'm not ready. The way this coronavirus thing happened, we got our economic collapse. We work with the elderly and now that the government has strongly recommended (or mandated) the "temporary" closure of nursing homes and the like to outside visitors, our income stream has pretty much evaporated to nothing and we have no idea when (or if) it will resume. We could theoretically reduce monthly monetary expenses down to where they might not even exceed the little bit of money I make per month doing online teaching, but still I feel not ready.

I look around at what we have in our stash and how long our cash savings will last, and still feel not ready. I look at the primitive implements we've aggregated over the years, which would help us do "by hand" much of what people tend to use powered appliances for, and still feel not ready. I will confess to panic-buying several hundred dollars' worth of stuff over the last couple of days because I didn't want to be caught with my pants down in any conceivable way. I didn't panic over toilet paper (we have enough, and you can always use a washcloth or a rag), I didn't panic over hand sanitizer (bought a ton of it when a local K-Mart went out of business in December), and we had enough food for several months if we were willing to accept the requisite changes in our diets that come from eating only shelf-stable foods for a while, but I still felt not ready.

It's like, you can prepare, but if you don't know what is specifically coming or when it's coming, still you might be caught off guard in some way, and it only takes one such way to torpedo your efforts. To me it feels like training for a championship boxing match without knowing who your opponent will be until the moment you step into the ring. You can't watch his previous fights and get a feel for his style, and you know that he'll be someone you've never seen before. You can become generally ready for any fight but not specifically ready for this one. That's how I feel. Any of y'all ever felt that way?
 

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I've felt that that is the nature of prepping. If you prep for only one or two events, that third one will knock you out. With general prepping you will likely have gaps to improvise for but you'll still be standing in the ring. I guess I would liken it to collage: I get a major in 'general prepping' and since I'm in Michigan I get a minor in 'blizzards'. Someone on the west coast might want a minor in 'earthquakes', or 'hurricanes' if you are in Florida.

We've prepared. We've done our best to be prepared for what we are about to face. Now we have to weather the storm the best we can and make notes of where we can improve, where we may be too rigid or weak, what worked and what didn't.

We've prepared. It's the rest of the world that is in panic mode. We're just a bit nervous.
 

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Wildlife Proctologist
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I suspect the doubts and concerns are more due to news spreading fear and seeing others panic buying everything. If you're concerned then a moment this weekend and inventory what you have and see if there's any holes to fill. It will either help you see how ready you are or help identify what else you may need.
 

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I suspect the doubts and concerns are more due to news spreading fear and seeing others panic buying everything. If you're concerned then a moment this weekend and inventory what you have and see if there's any holes to fill. It will either help you see how ready you are or help identify what else you may need.
I doubt anyone will be filling any holes in preps anywhere close to where I live this weekend. Shelves are stripped.

Spreading the response out has failed due to too-slow inoculation of the masses to reality, not some un-called-for provocation. I find the concept that the media is spreading fear and panic to be ludicrous. The FACTS are causing fear and panic, for damn good reason.

It seems to me that the media response ends up being more accurate than the government misdirection. It's only chicken little if the sky isn't actually falling.
 

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Wasteland Wanderer
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Sounds like a really great opportunity to re-calibrate your preps for next time! Figure out what worked and what didn't and grow from there.

I am ready to be stuck at home for a few weeks, but contingent on the water still running. It would be hard if it went out. I have some purification methods, but no source. I hope to be able to move from the city in a few years and will feel more confident with my own source, not that I don't love the convenience of city water.
 

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Capability, not scenarios
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<snip>

But I still feel like I'm not ready.
Join the club. I'm VERY well prepped for this, and I still am looking to fill holes, add to my stocks and so on. But ask yourself how you compare to Joe Blow down the street who's done...nothing.

I look around at what we have in our stash and how long our cash savings will last, and still feel not ready. I look at the primitive implements we've aggregated over the years, which would help us do "by hand" much of what people tend to use powered appliances for, and still feel not ready. I will confess to panic-buying several hundred dollars' worth of stuff over the last couple of days because I didn't want to be caught with my pants down in any conceivable way. I didn't panic over toilet paper (we have enough, and you can always use a washcloth or a rag), I didn't panic over hand sanitizer (bought a ton of it when a local K-Mart went out of business in December), and we had enough food for several months if we were willing to accept the requisite changes in our diets that come from eating only shelf-stable foods for a while, but I still felt not ready.
I've spent several hundred dollars as well, but I'm filling holes. Bought extra vitamins, some other over-the-counter meds (ibuprofin, naproxin, etc.), Lysol spray cans, but what I'm doing is smoothing out the dips in my preps, PLUS buying things that, if necessary, can be bartered.

It's like, you can prepare, but if you don't know what is specifically coming or when it's coming, still you might be caught off guard in some way, and it only takes one such way to torpedo your efforts.
THIS ^ is why scenario planning is dumb. You need to get in place the things you need no matter what. Food, water, hygiene, first aid/medical, heat/light/cooking fuel, and defense. You need these no matter what.

You think you should have anticipated this? No, you shouldn't have. Nobody can. Nobody knows (until it happens, i.e., right now) what the crisis will stem from.


To me it feels like training for a championship boxing match without knowing who your opponent will be until the moment you step into the ring. You can't watch his previous fights and get a feel for his style, and you know that he'll be someone you've never seen before. You can become generally ready for any fight but not specifically ready for this one. That's how I feel. Any of y'all ever felt that way?
No, I don't feel that way, because I don't scenario-plan. Oh, if you have hurricanes where you live, get some plywood, but you need to focus on what you need to live, not the scenarios.

And in your case, focus on what you've done well--which is a lot--rather than what you wish you'd done. You're in far better shape than most of the people around you. Keep your head low, and let's hope we can wait this thing out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I doubt anyone will be filling any holes in preps anywhere close to where I live this weekend. Shelves are stripped.

Spreading the response out has failed due to too-slow inoculation of the masses to reality, not some un-called-for provocation. I find the concept that the media is spreading fear and panic to be ludicrous. The FACTS are causing fear and panic, for damn good reason.

It seems to me that the media response ends up being more accurate than the government misdirection. It's only chicken little if the sky isn't actually falling.
I'm not particularly concerned about what the media says. I'm going on what I see with my own eyes. Is it possible that what I see is unduly influenced by media fearmongering? Yes, but still it is real. The half-empty stores are real. The ravaging of our income is real. The school closures and cancellation of large events are real.

And then it becomes, who knows what else will be real in a day, two days, a week, a month, a year? If we really have to contain the spread of coronavirus, there's only one way it's going to happen now, and that is to ban all travel into the USA from abroad, and to quarantine every last American, with as few exceptions as possible (medical workers, law enforcement, and delivery people come to mind) to his/her house for a minimum of two weeks unless they require hospital care. Without containing it, who knows what will happen later on? Will it be like chicken pox where, once you get it, you can figure on never getting it again? Or will it be like the common cold where you can get re-infected continually? If it's the latter, there will be a huge and permanent shift in how "life as usual" operates.

Sounds like a really great opportunity to re-calibrate your preps for next time! Figure out what worked and what didn't and grow from there.

I am ready to be stuck at home for a few weeks, but contingent on the water still running. It would be hard if it went out. I have some purification methods, but no source. I hope to be able to move from the city in a few years and will feel more confident with my own source, not that I don't love the convenience of city water.
That's the thing... what if the problem lasts longer than a few weeks? I think that, even among preppers, less than half (perhaps much fewer) could withstand SHTF indefinitely. We're in decent shape with water, and I figure that water that isn't full of mud can be purified relatively easily using a coffee filter, an iron boil pot, and a decent fire... but then it becomes, how to get water that isn't full of mud. We're fortunate in that we have a water cistern. I imagine that the government will do everything it possibly can to supply the people with water, because if it doesn't, that's pretty much the end of the government... pandemonium... Armageddon... you name it.

But even with a reliable water supply, I still think most preppers couldn't last indefinitely. If you're "ready to be stuck at home for a few weeks", you're probably in better shape than most Americans, but what if SHTF lasted longer than that? Then what? That's my point. We're all good for a certain amount of time but what if SHTF lasts longer and/or throws unexpected curveballs?

And in my specific case, we have two small children. It'd be one thing were it just me and my wife.
 

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I feel I am generally ready but still think of what I have missed. Same as getting into a stock car on a Saturday night... what else should I have done? Prepping is detail oriented. We take it to a fine level. Take solace that we are better off than 90% of the population.
 

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But even with a reliable water supply, I still think most preppers couldn't last indefinitely. If you're "ready to be stuck at home for a few weeks", you're probably in better shape than most Americans, but what if SHTF lasted longer than that? Then what? That's my point. We're all good for a certain amount of time but what if SHTF lasts longer and/or throws unexpected curveballs?

And in my specific case, we have two small children. It'd be one thing were it just me and my wife.
I think you are correct. My focus for "long term SHTF" is in community building. I know that goes against a lot of what we see on this site, but I don't think a small group can really be totally independent. I feel like the future, if there is some sort of societal collapse, will be in small towns and communities where the work and skills are shared.
 

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Good post, you cant prepare for everything, its just playing your best game.


Personally I think self sufficiency, frugal lifestyle, budgeting and thrift are some of the best survival tools to have. Having lived and worked in the 2nd and 3rd world you get an idea of all the levels in between what we see as normal life and collapse. We envisage some major calamity a lot of the time, but it could just be a gentle slide into one of the several types of poverty we get hit with. In which case saving money and accumulating resources now is a good idea.

For major calamity my aim is just to hole up for 6 months. The first 3 the average man mostly starves. He has been training his entire life to die a pointless death and I wont get in the way of his goal. Once he is gone and the disease has settled I'll come out and deal with the real people, the other survivors.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I think you are correct. My focus for "long term SHTF" is in community building. I know that goes against a lot of what we see on this site, but I don't think a small group can really be totally independent. I feel like the future, if there is some sort of societal collapse, will be in small towns and communities where the work and skills are shared.
I've been saying that for years. I suppose I'd feel a lot better if we were already there. This coronavirus is going to show us how we are all connected and how the notion of being "independent" is actually a crock.

Funny thing is, humans used to live in small communities where work and skills were shared. Everything comes full circle.

I wonder what people are going to do when they are confronted with the undeniable truth that we must live this way, and that doing so will require the abolition or abandonment of capitalism.
 

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I completely understand how you feel and feel the same. Was not prepping as much as I hd in the past and when I got a whiff of this a month ago, I started thinking ahead. Stocked the freezer more as it had whittled down, as well as cleaning supplies, baking supplies, etc. i was worried that this would tuen south and I would not be as ready as I should have been. Hubby used to tease me a little but this really made him come around. Which is good for me for the future as he is all in now. He had bought me a 55 gallon water drum two years ago and emergency kits too on top of what I already had. But I agree, without knowing exactly what I am prepping for, I just had to do my best.

Based on info others posted for out town, tp was sold out for miles around. Stores were crazy busy too!

I had surgery 9 days ago, so there is not much I can do right now but self quarantine and sit it out. Luckily, I saw this coming and did more last minute preps before surgery so I would not feel anxious afterwards. School got cancelled for two weeks here (came in yesterday) and hubby is military and we got travel banned for even domestic travel (military and their families). As I said I am recuperating from major surgery so it is fine with me. I would not travel now anyway. We have no cases here on Cape Cod yet, but would not be surprised if they came. Some were “jokingly” saying we should shut down the bridges so no one can come here. Help prevent the spread. It is funny how fast people change their tunes, though everyone here knew this would happen in the shtf event.
 

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?......... I find the concept that the media is spreading fear and panic to be ludicrous. The FACTS are causing fear and panic, for damn good reason.......
Will agree to disagree on the extent the media is spreading fear. I am sure we could both argue counterpoints without changes either's mind.

My point to the OP is that the anxiety is likely being made worse by the fear and panic around him. My advice is to pause and see where they really are rather than make rash decisions. Having a PACE plan and self-confidence reduces fear and anxiety.
 

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I completely understand how you feel and feel the same. Was not prepping as much as I hd in the past and when I got a whiff of this a month ago, I started thinking ahead. Stocked the freezer more as it had whittled down, as well as cleaning supplies, baking supplies, etc. i was worried that this would tuen south and I would not be as ready as I should have been. Hubby used to tease me a little but this really made him come around. Which is good for me for the future as he is all in now. He had bought me a 55 gallon water drum two years ago and emergency kits too on top of what I already had. But I agree, without knowing exactly what I am prepping for, I just had to do my best.

Based on info others posted for out town, tp was sold out for miles around. Stores were crazy busy too!

I had surgery 9 days ago, so there is not much I can do right now but self quarantine and sit it out. Luckily, I saw this coming and did more last minute preps before surgery so I would not feel anxious afterwards. School got cancelled for two weeks here (came in yesterday) and hubby is military and we got travel banned for even domestic travel (military and their families). As I said I am recuperating from major surgery so it is fine with me. I would not travel now anyway. We have no cases here on Cape Cod yet, but would not be surprised if they came. Some were “jokingly” saying we should shut down the bridges so no one can come here. Help prevent the spread. It is funny how fast people change their tunes, though everyone here knew this would happen in the shtf event.
Too Bad all your Liberal Neighbors are so quick to close the bridge for the Corna-19 but have no problem with Open Borders that allow people to bring this into the Rest of America
 
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SAME FEELING as
"Do I have enough guns, ammo, cleaning equipment, etc?"
"Do I have enough wood stored to get me through a winter?"
Do I have enough ...

it is hard wired into our systems if you are a prepper of any kind.

I have a buddy who gets the shakes if his .22LR ammo gets below 100,000 rounds... but because he is now pretty disabled he gets out to shoot maybe twice a year... yet he keeps on buying.

IT is a sickness for which there is no cure... just a short period of relief that comes with a new purchase... until it comes over you again....

a continuous vicious circle.
 

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Too Bad all your Liberal Neighbors are so quick to close the bridge for the Corna-19 but have no problem with Open Borders that allow people to bring this into the Rest of America
100% agree!! I am lucky that the majority of my particular neighborhood is conservative in political view and all do some type of prepping, though some of us do more than others.
 

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I felt the same way when someone was banging on my front door trying to work the lock even with a 357 Sig in my hand I was wishing for the 12 gauge with slugs in it. Thankfully the person left without my contacting them.

We have been prepped to weather most anything for a long time but I still “feel” like I should get more. A cold realistic assessment suggests that we are just fine in our current level of preparedness.
 

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Used to post here a few years ago and I'm back.

I feel not prepared. My old place I had a closet filled with water but since we moved I never replenished it. Especially seeing how the thin walled bottles collapsed.

We were almost out of Advil and had no Tylenol. Not a run on the name brand stuff yet in PA. I dug up like 6 bottles of hand sanitizer for our cars but that was it. I have some bar soap.

I was mainly prepping for no power so I got a camp stove, lots of fire making stuff, rope. I do have those water purification tabs and a few straws.

I was at Costco about 2 weeks ago and knew I needed cleaning stuff but figured I had enough to last till this week, which I do, but I like to have 1 in reserve. Bleach, Fantastic, Windex, paper towels and TP.

Point made: stock up when available and get double or more of what you think you need.

Anyway. Thought I'd post and thanks.
 

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Wildlife Proctologist
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Used to post here a few years ago and I'm back.

I feel not prepared. My old place I had a closet filled with water but since we moved I never replenished it. Especially seeing how the thin walled bottles collapsed.

We were almost out of Advil and had no Tylenol. Not a run on the name brand stuff yet in PA. I dug up like 6 bottles of hand sanitizer for our cars but that was it. I have some bar soap.

I was mainly prepping for no power so I got a camp stove, lots of fire making stuff, rope. I do have those water purification tabs and a few straws.

I was at Costco about 2 weeks ago and knew I needed cleaning stuff but figured I had enough to last till this week, which I do, but I like to have 1 in reserve. Bleach, Fantastic, Windex, paper towels and TP.

Point made: stock up when available and get double or more of what you think you need.

Anyway. Thought I'd post and thanks.

Welcome back. Never too late to plan ahead. The supply chain should catch up in the weeks ahead. In the meantime find what you can and make a plan.
 

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Storyteller
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Cover the basics, hope for the best.

Got laid off, didn't have a gig for two years. Did OK, started writing novels. Landed a writing gig that pays an obscene wage. Still there. So, all good.

Got hit with a M7.2 quake. House did OK 'cause we checked location before purchase and did quake retro-fit. No problems.

One way to look at this, if you are prepared for say, a house fire, the rest will be easy. Sorta.
 
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