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The concept of the gray man is to blend in. This person can disappear into the crowd and never be noticed.


For all points and purposes, shouldn’t preppers / survivalist be practicing gray man on an everyday basis? As stated in another post, tacticool has no place in prepping.

Some of the ways I practice “gray man”.

Pants. In rural areas such as where I live this is usually a pair of Levis, carhart shirt and boots. Rather than cowboy boots I opt for Justin steel toed work boots model number WK4661, Brown/Sawdust color. The soles are rugged and are supposed to be non-slip. Some people notice cowboy boots. Why are you wearing “cowboy boot”? Do you own horses? Cowboy boots the soles are usually slick. Work boots double as camouflage in rural areas and can be used for working around the farm. Add some leather polish and the Justin boots can be worn to a formal event. When going to a nearby city on the weekend I usually wear tennis shoes. How many people wear work boots to go see a movie?

In rural areas pants are levis, wranglers or some kind of blue jean. Cities and suburbs maybe khakis or slacks. I would stay away from “tactical” looking cargo pants. Keep it simple and basic. I do not own a pair of slacks.

Shirts. No comapny logo of your employer. Workshirts such as Carhart I would consider acceptable in some areas. Button up shirts, maybe polo shirts,,, whatever the locals wear. No shirts with firearms on it. Nothing saying you support the NRA or second amendment. No political statements on your shirts or hats.

Hats. I wear a boonie hat around the farm and rarely in town. If the weather is pouring rain I “might” wear my boonie hat into wal-mart to keep the rain off my glasses. Once again what is your location? City, suburbs or rural area? What do people in your area usually do? Here in rural Texas Lone Star feed and fertilizer hats are common.

What are not common are open top visor hats. When I see someone around town with an open top visor hat, chances are they are not from around here.

I live in a rural area, around here we work outside. The top of your head will get sun burned wearing a visor hat. I wear a wide brimmed boonie hat to keep the sun off my ears, out of my eyes and to protect the top of my head from getting sunburned.

Eye glasses, small metal frame. None of the Buddy Holly hipster glasses that kids wear these days.

No tattoos.

How many men do you see that are clean shaven? Most of us have some kind of 5 o’clock shadow. On the weekends I do not shave. By Sunday I have that Ulysses S. Grant gruff look.

No bumper stickers on your car, SUV or truck. Especially none of those “come and take it” bumper stickers.

Casual colors. No camouflage colors in the summer. During hunting season it is common to see someone wearing camouflage around town. Chances are they just got back from a hunting trip. I have a couple of camo coats I “might” wear to town in the winter. Chances are I will wear my green carhart hoodie jacket.

No knives clipped to your pocket. I like to carry my knife next to my wallet in my back pocket. The knife sits vertical and blends in with my wallet. This is also dependent on location. Some areas may prohibit carrying a knife. Thankfully I live in Texas.

No fancy watches. I used to wear a watch all the time. But a few years ago I stopped wearing on. My watch is still on my desk if I decide to wear it. My watch of choice is a timex in dull colors. No gold or silver colored watches.

Know it all. One of the worst things a prepper / survivalist can do is give advice in public. We have all seen the people who stand at the sporting goods counter at walmart, or at Academy sports and outdoors, Gander Mountain,,,, give out all kinds of advice on various rifles and types of ammunition.

There is a guy who spends a lot of time at walmart in Jasper Texas. He will stand at the sporting goods counter and give out advice to anyone who will listen.

Do not be that kind of person.

While in public be the dumbass who does not know jack. When the topic of hunting ammunition comes up while I am in public, I say I use Remington core-lokt in 308 Winchester or 30-30 Winchester. Brands that just about everyone recognizes. No real discussion or talking points. No mention of military style rifles or stockpiling ammunition.

If someone I do not know ask me a question, I give them a very simple answer.

Never talk about your preps in public. Nobody but your close friends and family members need to know what you have stockpiled or anything else about your preps.

While in town I may talk about my chickens, then again this is a rural area and lots of people have livestock. Just about everyone knows someone who has cattle, a farm, a garden, horses, goats, chickens. Talking about livestock and a garden is common around here.

Keep political opinions to yourself while in public.

Buying bulk ammunition from stores. When someone goes to Walmart, Gander Mountain or Academy sport and outdoors and buys a thousand rounds of ammo every month, employees start remembering you.

Buy a case every month, people notice.

Buy a few boxes every couple of weeks and nobody notices.
 

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Totally agree Kev.

Gray man is about more than what you wear...it is about an overall blending in in action and dress.

It will mean different things in different cities and towns. In some places, you can wear things and be totally blending in that in another place (some times just across town) you stand out.

The way you carry yourself, the way you look or talk, the way you behave in general all can help you blend or make you stand out.
 

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I love live in S TX my DH wears worn out jeans and rough work boots almost anywhere we go except church or fancy occasions he wears a gimmie cap. He sometimes wears tennis shoes when we go fishing. Since we took early retirement he does not shave. I dress differently depending on what I am doing. My friends can't believe I wear jeans when it's 100 degrees, I do wear short boots in the summer as a concession to the heat I usually wear some type of hat or cap. We never get a second look anywhere we go. People just don't care how you look around here, now acting like a know it all will get you too much attention, how you dress not so much.

Sent from my SM-J700P using Tapatalk
 

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For all points and purposes, shouldn’t preppers / survivalist be practicing gray man on an everyday basis?
While someone could do this, there is of course the danger of going native.

Personally, I prefer to live the way I feel happy, and some aspects of that are not the typical Roman Catholic appearance.

If you knew how I look on a daily basis you will get the idea that people are way more likely to remember me than I am them. Most people deeply personally identify with me.

Do I feel like shaving and cutting off my dreadlockes, taking off my silkweight top and APECS trousers just to be a typical University student dressing in polos and sweaters, with semi casual pants and jeans. No. I hate how jeans feel, I prefer wool or casheire to synthetics when they arn't nylon. It is what I feel in my skin with. I hate ties I find them constrictive. I prefer my backpack to a portfolio and breifcase.

I like unique clothing that feels good. Do I want to give up what I enjoy in life so that I can practice being a normal? Hell no.

Fact is I don't live to prep, it is a hobby. I live for my hobbies and enjoyment in life, and things I value.

I can grab a pair of scissors or an electric hair buzzer any day of the week, or I can just wear a hoodie. None the less I'd rather be me and dead than the clone of what I hate.


I am proactive I am required to be outgoing and engaging to excel in my studies, as I must produce to advance.

None the less I would much rather practice survival skills than spending extra time on ironing and grooming on a daily basis. If I meet my essential hygine I don't need to spend an extra hour perfecting my appearance.


Nothing against the look for others, but just not me.

https://www.google.ca/search?q=roma...yO_OAhVHPxQKHeQYA3QQ_AUICCgB&biw=1280&bih=713


Personally what I have encountered is that people such as police, older anal type women, feminists, and authority figures tend to be sorta mean to me. Meanwhile people that are less advantaged from lower income groups or fringe groups tend to be nicer to me. Traditionally it is suppose to be the people that are made to be criminals such as the poor, and violent people, however these are the people that tend to see me as one of their own, oddly this then places figures like the government as my main danger, HOWEVER, government unless it has gone loco at worst can just put me in a room and provide room service while I do nothing but workout and sleep.

None the less, in fact it is corruption that is a concern, none the less, I personally think that government targets people for life, so things like appearance don't matter, it is all about them being able to identify you. If you are already a target and monitored it really makes no sense to make changes, as this will just ring alarm bells for them.

Not normal but happy, and feeling more survivable than the average normal.


As I am law abiding I am only really concerned about corruption as opposed to simply government.

This is me gray
I of course look even more normal without facial hair. None the less I am not vain, and am disturbed by others casting their view of how others should appear.


With just a few changes I begin to looks more like a normal. With a razor I go from being everyones favorite mario (
Its a me Mario!) into the guy that lives on your block. Really it is only corruption to be concerned about.








Now opsec aside cause I frankly am not concerned about hiding my identity. I in fact am more concerned about insuring an accurate record of my activities and communications exists to reduce the effect of corruption. Anyone with half a brain could kill me if they wanted. Defending against a surpise assasination is very difficult without a security team, and really why would anyone want to kill me?


I AM A GRAY
muahahha



 

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Shuriken snowflake
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I like unique clothing that feels good. Do I want to give up what I enjoy in life so that I can practice being a normal? Hell no.

Fact is I don't live to prep, it is a hobby. I live for my hobbies and enjoyment in life, and things I value.

I can grab a pair of scissors or an electric hair buzzer any day of the week, or I can just wear a hoodie. None the less I'd rather be me and dead than the clone of what I hate.
I don't see the point of being alive if I would have to play normal and look normal. If I can't let my personality shine through, what is the point? And I would never, ever in a daily situation wear what people of my gender and age do. I would hate myself and be very uncomfortable.

Also in a true long term emergency it is crucial to have some normalcy and as long as it is possible, keep your own identity and style. In certain training and punishment, people have been made to look identical and their hair chopped off. That totally kills your sense of self, your immune system will start collapsing and you will be very breakable.

No thanx.
 

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I don't see the point of being alive if I would have to play normal and look normal. If I can't let my personality shine through, what is the point? And I would never, ever in a daily situation wear what people of my gender and age do. I would hate myself and be very uncomfortable.

Also in a true long term emergency it is crucial to have some normalcy and as long as it is possible, keep your own identity and style. In certain training and punishment, people have been made to look identical and their hair chopped off. That totally kills your sense of self, your immune system will start collapsing and you will be very breakable.

No thanx.
It is normalcy that makes people sheeple instead of having the will to do what it takes to survive. The system is definately dehumanizing. That is the liberty of being human, letting what god made you express itself as opposed to creating dogma of current fashion, often which has no logic whatosever other than systems of social control and indoctriniation.


Bear in mind in normal peace times without major crisis, a uniform society makes things easier, however if people cannot express themselves freely then totalitarianism, socialism, and dictatorial rule entrenches itself. If people are forced to be a certain way as self expression that isn't a free society. Society may thrive but difference need not be disorder.

The point in all this is why not practice. You can practice. Knowing environmental psychology really helps with this as well as the demographics of where you are and where you are travelling. However if you live as a gray person to conceil who you really want to be, that is necesitated or just non self actualization.
 

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If I had a voice I'd sing
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There are so many different types of people out there, everywhere, that "blending in" has little actual meaning.

I think the OP's point is that it is better to not stand out in a way that can be perceived as a threat. But "standing out" is a matter of the perception of the people around you. Most people are sheep, and unless you walk around with a chest rig, they won't notice.

That's my opinion anyway. Then again, I live in an area where if you wear full camo to the local store in the middle of summer, nobody would even notice, except maybe out-of-towners. And that's one reason I like it here.

It's common sense to not talk about huge stores of food, or possibly to even present knowledge of prepping/survivalism. I see how that can be a subset of the "Gray Man" philosophy, but really it's just the same old thing we've always talked about - OPSEC.

My opinion is that the "Gray Man" philosophy taken as a whole, while not completely invalid, is less important than some people think it is.

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I dress as I feel comfortable, where I live camo is a part of life, douche bag hunters who can't hit a deer at 15 yds wear camo every where they go. ******* hicks, camo everywhere. I wear jeans, Walmart T shirt and a camo hat no one knows anything. No Molon Labe shirts or Hitlery for prison shirts for me (they are quite true) but nothing to stand out. Nowadays with all the mutants with 20-30 piercings and full tattoos everywhere, blending in is pretty easy.
I have carried a full size CCW gun for 14 years and no one has ever noticed. I see others who scream "I carry a gun" and the open carry guys.... I am fine with open carry but why open carry when that makes it painfully obvious you should be shot first....... Especially if I was a "bad guy" with ill intentions. Keep it hidden, don't advertise, be polite and have a plan to kill everyone you meet if need be to keep your kids and family and self safe.
Oh and first rule of prepping is "do not talk about prepping". No matter what unless you are with your planned group. No knowing who may take note of your dumb comments, and license plate when leaving after bulk purchases and you running your mouth... Stay smart and stay safe my friends!
 

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Part of being gray for me:

1. Being with an attractive woman in most places erodes being gray, every alpha male will check you as competition, and if you're in a bar or a club, well, you might well get into something without realizing why. If you already got the woman, there's no reason to go into a club or a bar, especially a ******* bar.

2. In some circumstances, I wear a tie, in others I wear working clothing. I either look like a fat, balding manager or a working guy...not super bad, but I look employed and without enough money to be worth bothering. I can conceal a full sized .45 or 9 mm in either mode.

3. Back to where I go...I avoid places where I'd stick out too much, during certain times. For example, I'd NEVER go to a certain convenience store after dark. The demographics literally change and it's a dangerous place. If you look like you work you look like a mark.

4. I don't argue or correct folks in public. I'm not out to save the world. If someone is going on about some political issue, I let them talk, remain non committal. I have friends who want to talk politics and social issues in public. I prefer to keep it down or mask the conversation.

5. I'd love to drive something a bit nicer, I drive a modest car, but the nice stuff is in the accessories and the interior. My car needs to be able to blend in and not be especially noticeable. (I took a gamble on a car color, which was unique a few years ago, but common now.) second time that happened.

6. I knew my mail ordering might arouse suspicion, but by now the mail person, and the regular delivery folks believe I don't just get stuff mailed to me for me, but also for relatives who aren't home in their places during delivery, or might have their stuff stolen in their neighborhood, and for a friend who doesn't want his wife to know what he's buying.

7. I'm too big to blend, so I go for nonthreatening and not memorable. I don't frown, I'm told I'm too intimidating when I do that, so I half smile or smile...but not overly friendly.
 

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I like the poker player concept, just because you have aces doesn't mean everyone at the table has to know. I like the ignorance play, let them underestimate you.
 

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Shuriken snowflake
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It is normalcy that makes people sheeple instead of having the will to do what it takes to survive.
Sorry, I didn't clarify enough. I mean what is normal for me. Say I have some habit or similar here at home, if I can bring it with me it will help me staying sane.
 

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Shuriken snowflake
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There are so many different types of people out there, everywhere, that "blending in" has little actual meaning.

I think the OP's point is that it is better to not stand out in a way that can be perceived as a threat. But "standing out" is a matter of the perception of the people around you.

It's common sense to not talk about huge stores of food, or possibly to even present knowledge of prepping/survivalism. I see how that can be a subset of the "Gray Man" philosophy, but really it's just the same old thing we've always talked about - OPSEC.
I agree. Most people in my country has a bugout (Yes seriously, more that one out of three people has direct access to a country cottage, more have indirect access). I do too and it is not a secret, having a summer escape is normal. Maybe I would think different if I had a lot of preps which I do not. But I don't talk about that stuff anyway. The only thing I talk to my closest about is the importance of having some stuff to carry you over a few days. Nothing else. But that could be the most important anyway because a short disturbance is more likely to happen and if they can stay inside then the better. I have no need to talk about prepping.

Most people would probably think I am a bit odd. That is OK. The leap from odd to prepper is huge, no one thinks "There is a prepper" just by looking at them. Especially since I dress the way I like, I never adopted a prepper look, being a prepper is not a dress up game!

I couldn't blend in if I tried. But I am pretty sure I mostly come across as non threatening. Unless someone angers me of course. Then a totally different story.
 

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Shuriken snowflake
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With Kev, a lot of preppers have seen his videos. They know what he looks like. And you're not morally superior because you are a prepper, lot of rotten apples.
 

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I tend to prefer being underestimated. My mood really determines a great deal. Sometimes I want to wear my III% hoodie. Yesterday I worse Carhart boot cut blue jeans, tan boots and a Team Zissou T-shirt that just barely hid my P229.
 

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I'm in TX so my regular day wear doesn't really stand out (OD Tac pants, Khaki field shirt, tan combat boots).. I look like a sheriff or park ranger. I do stand out a little when I'm dressed for business, but it's not due to clothing as much as the way I carry myself. I'm only able to shake off my LEO/Mil aura with conscious effort and I don't normally care enough to do that. If I have to go "gray" I have a hoodie or t-shirt to toss on for what good it would do.
 

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The Grey man resides at the back of the room or crowd, he says little but watches and listens to to what's in front of him.
 

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It looks to me that the grey man concept is almost entirely socially, cultarally, situationally and geographically dependant.

And no matter what clothes you have a situation can arise where they can be the appropriate attire.

Except for my Ultimate Warrior outfit that's appropriate for all situations, weddings, funerals, job interviews, leisure, "tactical situations"....
 

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My opinion is that the "Gray Man" philosophy taken as a whole, while not completely invalid, is less important than some people think it is.

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The other side of that coin is the philosophy that it's never good to be on the radar. Not in life, not online, not to the powers that be, nor the legal system, nor anywhere at all. Well, unless you're a Hollywood celebrity or something where it's sort of mandatory.

The Grey man resides at the back of the room or crowd, he says little but watches and listens to to what's in front of him.
Exactly. I think grey man is more about mindset and actions than clothing choices. It's not hard to blend in with those around you by simply dressing the part. But to be a true grey man also requires playing the part.

There are some people who always try to be the center of attention. No matter how they dress, they will always attract some sort of attention, even when they're not trying, because it's in their nature. Same with the ones who always seek approval or praise. They are always going to do things to stand out, even if it's subconsciously, to gain the attention of those around them.

There's no way to become invisible. But it's not that hard to make yourself so forgettable that nobody even notices that you're there. I do it all the time. Not out of some grey man fantasy, but because I don't like being interacted with. I'm the exact opposite of the attention hogs. I despise attention and do my best to avoid it completely.
 

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I think that a notable point to be made in this discussion is something that I've noticed since becoming a CCP holder: most people don't pay attention to those around them. Their situational awareness is typically little to zero.

If you aren't doing something to draw attention to yourself (which totally depends on the situation), the typical person will not notice you at all.

And even in some situations where you would think people would pay attention, they usually don't. For example, I know of a guy who wears a big, flamboyant cowboy hat with a big buckle and very noticeable cowboy boots when he plays Texas hold-em poker at his local casino. He only plays very strong hands (i.e. AA, KK, QQ, JJ) and folds literally everything else. A professional player would notice someone playing like this immediately (such players are called 'rocks') and never bet against them. But he says that when he bets, people raise against him all the time, and he usually takes their money (he is usually successful in making money). They simply aren't paying attention to what's going on around them.

I think that there is value in understanding the gray-man concept, but unless someone is really doing something publicly that is out of the ordinary on a regular basis, no one is going to notice except the people who are smart enough to notice anyway.
 
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