Doomsday Preppers, zombies, TEOTWAWKI, SHTF, OPSEC, market collapse, food storage, water storage, bug-out bag. If you know what these terms mean and practice some of them then welcome to the loony bin. You are crazy, maybe even subversive. We all know that if you step outside the narrow range of what society considers normal you will likely be labeled. If you break the law you’re a criminal. If you dance on your roof naked you might be called crazy.
by Bob Augustine, a.k.a. “Jarhead Survivor”
There are certain ways to act and not to act around your fellow human beings and depending on what society you live in these things can change. In our society if you talk about the world as we know possibly ending then you might be called strange. If you act on it you might be called crazy. You might be tagged as a survivalist, which conjures up images of guys in camo and high powered weapons and shifty eyes who come to town once a year for supplies. Or lately you might be called a Doomsday Prepper thanks to T.V. Worse yet you might be labeled a subversive or even a terrorist by the government.
Eight Reasons We Preppers are Crazy
- We do things outside the norm.
Yep. We plan ahead. We put away food and water just in case the power goes out. This doesn’t have to be from a CME, terrorist attack or a nuclear war. I’ve dipped into my water supply at least five or six times now because of storms knocking the power out. Imagine that!
Instead of not having water to do anything when the power went out I went downstairs grabbed enough water in every bathroom to brush teeth and wash up. I put enough water in the kitchen to make coffee, cook, and wash up with. People who don’t store water don’t appreciate how much they depend on it until it’s not there.
2. Planning for an event that others don’t see as likely.
At some point most of you reading this looked around at our world and thought to yourself, “Man, this whole thing is a house of cards and could come crashing down at any minute.” Maybe it’s a market crash. How long can we keep pumping 80 billion a month into the market and getting market highs before people figure out that our fiat money isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on?
Maybe it will never happen. Maybe people want to believe in the illusion so badly that it will stay propped up. Then again, maybe it won’t. If it does come crashing down and there’s a period of time where your dollar bills are only good for wiping your backside with, then it might be smart to have some extra food and water kicking around.
You know all the scenarios. CME, terrorist act, societal collapse, asteroid. If you’ve watched Doomsday Preppers you know society can collapse in any number of ways. Exactly how likely this is to happen is a matter of debate.
3. We think of guns as useful tools instead of weapons that scare the hell out of people.
Most of us Preppers are pro guns for different reasons. We believe in the right to bear arms. We believe in the right to protect ourselves and our loved ones. We realize if society ever does collapse or there is a major disaster having guns for self-defense might be the only way we make it through with our lives and the possessions that could keep us alive intact.
There are many people out there right now that would like to take our guns away. These people would be happy to give up their rights so that we might be protected by the government. Personally, I’d rather be in charge of my own well-being. The idea of relying on someone to feed my family, clothe us, and give us shelter makes me queasy.
4. The media likes to make us look crazy for the entertainment value.
The media is a double edged sword. If you keep in mind that they are in it for the money, you might be able to deal with them and not walk away looking like an idiot. I admit to watching a few episodes of Doomsday Preppers, but I’ve got to say that the way they were set up and the shows were edited were mostly a turn off for me. Maybe there were some really good episodes, but I just preferred not to watch it after awhile.
Crazy Prepper Example: There was an episode of a guy here in Maine who has an outdoor school. I’ve met him in person and he’s really quite a guy. Smart, articulate, likable, and he’s probably forgotten more about wilderness survival than I’ll ever know, but the media made him look foolish. I was really disappointed in the way they edited the show for him.
5. We practice OPSEC.
Operational Security. It’s important. As you well know this basically means don’t go around blabbing about how prepared you are and where your secret bunker with two year’s worth of food, water, and ammo is located, because if and when things actually do go south everybody you’ve told – and everybody they’ve told – will be knocking on your door wanting a piece of the pie. It doesn’t matter that they had the same opportunity as you to get prepared. Hell, they may have laughed at you for wasting your time and money on prepping. It will be a moot point then because all they’ll want is to make sure their families are fed and protected. And you’ll be their ticket to staying warm, fed, and dry.
Are you ready to turn friends and family away if it comes down to it? Have you added more preps to help take care of the overflow of people that might show up on your doorstep?
If you don’t want to handle a large group of people the best way is to practice good OPSEC and simply not talk about what you’re doing with others.
I’ve had people come into my house and remark on the stuff that I have. Invariably they’ll say, “Well, if doomsday ever hits I’m coming to your house.” My response is, “You better bring some mad survival skills with you ’cause there ain’t gonna be a free ride!”
6. We tend to be a little paranoid. Not necessarily because we’re afraid people will come steal our preps (well that too), but because we don’t want to be branded as crazy.
Have you ever been at a party and used a phrase like, “Hi, I’m a doomsday prepper!” just to break the ice? Of course not. Neither have I. My experience is that people who don’t understand the need to prep tend to think we’re crazy, foolish, stupid, subversive or even dangerous. Or a mix of all five.
For that reason I don’t usually talk about it at all. Now, if someone brings it up I’m willing to engage in a limited conversation. If you want to meet like-minded people you have to. It’s just that sometimes it’s harder to meet another prepper than it is to meet another bird watcher. Preppers and bird watchers are both avid at what they do. Bird watchers might occasionally be called a little strange because of the lengths they’ll go to to spot a certain rare bird, but Preppers will be called crazy and I’d just as soon forgo that title and not draw attention to myself.
7. We believe in being self-sufficient.
This encompasses some of the other points made here, but I believe it’s an important concept to bring up. The whole idea behind prepping is to survive any kind of situation as self-sufficiently as possible. I’ve found in many situations when I’ve had to rely on others to get things done I’ve been disappointed. You’ll get a half-assed effort or no effort at all, others won’t take it as seriously as you do, they might get sick or just plain not show up, whatever. If it comes to my survival I don’t want someone else to be in the position to screw me over, either on purpose or by accident.
The more skills, knowledge, and survival gear you have the better off you’ll be in times of need.
8. We talk about the zombie apocalypse.
This would almost be kind of funny except people don’t realize we’re talking about them. I’ve heard people talk about shooting zombies, that horde that comes out of the cities looking for food, water and shelter, after a major catastrophe. It’s easier to talk about killing a zombie than it is a real, living, breathing human being. A real zombie apocalypse will never happen of course.
Here’s a helpful tip: If you’ve got a ton of ammo put away for shooting real zombies it might be a good idea to re-task it for a different purpose. However, a flood of people streaming out of the city after a major catastrophe is a possibility. Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not saying to shoot innocent people fleeing a disaster. I’ll be as compassionate and giving as I can without putting my own family in jeopardy.
Questions? Comments? Do you think preppers are crazy? Sound off below!
I’ve definately been labeled crazy for prepping every now and then. Usually by the people who are completely unprepared. I try to maintain a good OPSEC, but if someone asks me about my preps I tell them it’s in case we get hit with a big hurricane, living in Florida gives you that excuse. But I have had people say that they’re coming to see me when it hits the fan, I tell them no, I have my own family to take care of and that they need to take responsibility and at least stock up some food and water.
Amen to that!
Call me crazy but where is Number 3 and 6
Not left justified but there
Thanks Robert. We’ve been having problems with WordPress. Like anonymous said, they were there, but they weren’t formatted correctly. I’ve fixed it as best I can.
They are after 2. And 5…. look for the bold lettering. Looks like they were started without the spacing to start a new subject, that’s all. Simple error
Bunch of crazy fuckwit Americans.
Seriously Americans kill Americans.
Sadly they seem to think that keeping you in mind for later IS preparing for an emergency. Applying the “I don’t have to have knowledge, I just have to know where to find it” to actual physical preps. “I don’t have to sacrifice and work and learn extra stuff, you’ll do all that work for me. Won’t ya old buddy?”
Er. No. If I know you’ve made preparations (because you’ve tried to be a quiet evangelist) then if some freak accident comes, I’m there to help. But if you totally ignored what I said, and what is apparent to me, then you’re on your own. Besides, I couldn’t afford to save enough for my family AND yours.
If I danced naked on the rooftop, I would expect to be arrested and hauled to Gitmo. Nobody should have to see that. It would be assault even if I was clothed.
If that’s the case. It may be cruel and unusual punishment, even there. Lol
Preppers are ridiculed and laughed at for preparing for events which will never happen. But many people haven’t learned ‘Never say never’ – there are many many events which occur which aren’t world changers, but still are bad enough that being prepared for worse really helped out.
Ask the people who had to flee their homes at last minute due to a wildfire if having a BO bag would have helped them. Ask the people who had to get out way of floods if knowing which routes would be blocked would have been helpful information.
And so on and so on. Maybe preppers should make more comments of pointing out those local emergencies to open up some eyes.
I have used these also, I bring to people the memories watching the news showing citizens both here and in Japan, waiting in long lines for water/food. Who would you rather be them or a prepper or self reliant person? Back in the 80’s I was called a survivalist (wrong) but when the Loma Prieta earthquake hit, everyone who knew was like dude you got the hook up. I went from the butt of jokes to savior, Really? I hated that. Take care of your business.
Your last paragraph gave me a great idea for a blog post, j.r.!
They’re more that end of the world scenarios. Tornadoes, hurricanes, wildfires, or something like a chlorine spill. When you gotta go, be prepared to go. Boy Scouts teach being prepared
I raise chickens, have a huge garden, and own enough seeds to outfit the country (of course that is most due to the business) and yet a friend labeled me once as “you are one of those crazy dooms dayers aren’t you?”.
Then during hurricane Sandy (here in NJ), guess who came calling to borrow my generator … being prepared for the worse and hoping for the best is far form being crazy. It’s common sense if you ask me.
Agreed, Mike. Enough seeds for the country? Hey! I know where I’m going if TSHTF!
Thanks Jarhead for this inspiring article. I have been a Prepper since Y2K. Think we will need all those things we have squirreled away before too long, it looks kinda scary out there. I am sending your article to my husband who is a non Prepper kind of guy. He just looks at me like I’m crazy when I work on my preps….hoping your words of wisdom will wake him up. Thanks again!
Hey Loretta. You’re welcome, but it probably won’t work. The best you can do is hope for is tolerance and if things go south then you can really rub it in. I would!
Somehow it became a GOOD think to be a helpless whining parasite.
Somehow it became a GOOD thing to be a helpless whining parasite.
‘He just looks at me like I’m crazy when I work on my preps….hoping your words of wisdom will wake him up’
Yes I’m sure he’ll change his mind – yet another WTSHTF/EOTWAWKI article vs 15 years of seeing prepping was just a pointless waste of time and money.
Preppers really are crazy but not for these reasons. Why do you guys want to survive a doomsday scenario just to spend years sitting in a gas mask, bolted in your home with your ammo and dried food. Doesn’t sound like a life worth living to me.
Let them throw labels at us, I have one for them, ‘ sheep’.
Sheep have it made though, they have a good life grazing and sleeping and making little sheep, knowing that all will be taken care of. It would be great to live a carefree life, with the only care being,’ where are we going for vacation this summer or what’s on TV’. Unfortunately for us crazy people, we have more to think about, it’s called reality. There is only one reality, no matter what anyone says, some choose to see it others do not. I can’t say I blame them, it is scary stuff, not for the faint of heart.
I do have a plan to help others, can’t help them all, but I will do the best I can.
I totally agree, I have added a certain percentage more in preps to assist friends and neighbors.
Sheep and zombies. Not very flattering when you step back and look at it is it? Ha!
every once in a while, in conversation, I will mention that: “I’m an armchair survivalist from the internet”. I make sure to put on my crazed facial expression while I’m saying it…
in general, I think honesty is the best policy.
… hey you just gave me a good idea. I’m going to add a small pair of binoculars, and a “bird book” to my day hike bag.
I’m not a doomseday prepper, I’m a “bird watcher”…
(that’s the ticket. yeh, I’m a bird watcher)
Haha! That’s awesome, Irish.
is the Mrs. home from the hospital yet?
Yes! She came home last week and is feeling much better now. Thanks for asking, Irish.
Glad to hear it.
hospitals are yucky.
Great article Jarhead, great comments from all. In my opinion everyone on this site is above average in intelligence, YOU GET IT.
I’m wicked smaht too.
Seriously, I don’t think it’s so much about intelligence (although it doesn’t hurt) as it is the ability to think critically without influence from “regular” society and the media. Just a thought.
Great article! I practice very strict OPSEC and only discuss things with my family. My wife’s family is like minded but i haven’t had a real discussion with them yet about seriously putting up supplies. My plan is to buy them both a Maverick 88 w/200 shells and a few five gallon buckets with assorted supplies to get their mind working past where they are now.
Its kind of funny that they call us preppers when my grandfather had more ‘preps’ than me and it was normal life for him. Pantry full of canned vegetables, 1 acre garden, pre-1985 pickup truck, assorted revolvers, shotgun and hunting rifle. That was the way of life back then and our modern technological advances have robbed us of those skills and mindset. People that lived thru the Great Depression understand the importance of having some food and water stored up. That’s me and my father’s goal is to live and operate the way Grandpa did.
Keep it up! Love the blog!
You’ve given me a good idea for a blog post too, NoSox. Thanks!
Yessir! My best friend up here just convinced his girlfriend to prep by introducing her to ‘The Walking Dead’ this weekend! They watched 3 seasons and she concluded that it would really suck to be in a bad situation or disaster and not be able to eat or protect yourself.
Initially when they started dating months ago she asked him to sell his gun and stop carrying his knife. Now she’s looking for a BOB and firearms training. My buddy is grinning from ear to ear this morning:)
Forget the last depression. Helplessness has been in fashion for less than 50 years. Humans have only recently forgotten that winter can be a long season.
But preparedness people have always been considered different. Nobody wants to think about disasters or drastic life changes. To prepare for them is somehow thought to be bad luck. Or something.
Or something. I like that, Leon. Thanks.
wait, wait, wait….If you dance on your roof naked during a full moon you are not crazy. On a serious note I have talked to people that I know are fellow preppers. OPSEC being one of my main concerns, it seems we always talk around the subject. In general you can usually spot a prepper after about 5 minutes of talking. The end of the world may or may not happen, but earthquakes, hurricanes, blizzards, tornadoes, power outages will happen. You don’t have to be a slobbering, gun crazed zombie hunter to want to protect your family and all that you have worked hard to get in this life. The feds in general WANT you to be dependent on them. That’s why FEMA considers military and former military, anybody with more then two guns, anybody who stores food, to be some one to place on the watch list.
No! You’re only crazy if you do it during the day! At night is perfectly acceptable.
Yet another blog post idea in the works. You guys are just killing it today!
(If you know what these terms mean and practice some of them then welcome to the loony bin. )
Some of them? If you only practice some these things you are only in the first stages of loony.
As far as myself, I left the loony bin a long time ago. It’s not visible in the rear view mirror at all.
I never talk about prepping any more. Long ago I got tired of the “I know where I’m coming if anything ever happens” line. I ended up answering this by asking them if I could drive their new SUV for a week, or if they were going to take me along on the next winter cruse they take every year. And the answer was always NO. Shocked that I would ask such a thing. I would respond that I didn’t go on a cruse, I instead bought some extra food, LED lights, a second propane tank and 500 pounds of extra propane. If they were not going to buy me a free cruse, why should I buy them free food or heat.
But people never seem to get it so I don’t even desire to debate what all of us here know is common sense things to do. I just don’t care how they live their life any more.
I love the part about you inviting yourself along on their vacation. Perfect!
My favorite comeback to the “I’m coming to your place when it hits the fan”, is ” can I have 10K because I didn’t budget very well this year?” Not borrow, but have. It seems my sense of humor never goes over well.
Having been born and raised n Florida, l’ve seen my share of hurricanes. l’ve had job losses, housing issues,car issues you name it. Being prepared for these emergencies just seems second nature now.
As far as talking to others? Doesn’t happen. l just continue to add fruit trees to the yard (up to 12 different types of fruit) planting my different veggies,(even loufa for dishes and body scrubbing) and try to add to my beans and band-aids whenever possible.
If anyone ever comments l tell them l’m a packrat and hate to throw things away. Kills the curiosity before it begins usually.
If this makes me “crazy” l’m ok with that.
Great read Jarhead; Ditto!
Yes there are things we do to help ourselves that other people will call crazy. Many have already said that they have heard others say they will be coming to them, myself included. I think my family will be able to deal with things for a while, maybe even with a few “guests”
Its Amazing how crazy becomes helpful and necessary in an emergency.
I aint crazy, and I’ve got the papers to prove it!
The same people who ridicule “preppers” have no issue with paying premiums for medical or homeowner’s insurance for an entire lifetime, all the while hoping to never need to file a claim.
I don’t think I’m crazy “putting away for a rainy day,” hanging out via the internet with like minded individuals, or learning new skills via communication and caring. I am rather proud of all the things I have learned here, bookmarked for a later project, or sent prayers and well wishes to those in need. That my friends is what life is all about.
I don’t discuss much with those that don’t know me well but don’t hesitate to bring those that ask out to show them how to can, make jelly, butcher chickens or whatever I’m doing to “plant the seed” for like minded thinking. When they tell me they are “coming to my house” when the crap hits the fan, I just smile and tell them that this work doesn’t get done by itself and my family is pretty much all I have resources for. I then tell them there is still time to do for themselves and share articles on how to get food stores on a limited budget. I send them home with a home made “goodie” and tell them I will assist them if they have questions. Do I know all the answers at this point of my life? No. I got a head start by depression era parents who continued to scrimp and save their entire lives. We got by with very little and I am blessed that I have been able to acquire a lifestyle with “a little more than that.”
I was that guy. I was that guy that said “When it hits the fan, Im coming over here”. He replied “Or, you cant start your own prepping”. So I did. Now we have a MAG (mutual agreement group) between his family, my family, and a couple others. Were all prepping for ourselves but if it really gets bad we can rely on each other. We know we can trade among ourselves and help each other out. If it gets REALLY bad we have a plan in place to pack up our preps and meet at one individuals home in a tactical location on a hill with a 360 degree view of open farm country. I dont have a lot of extra money to buy a lot of extra goods so I spend my extra time learning skills. Lately Ive gotten into ammo reloading, knife making, leathercraft, beer brewing, wine making, gardening, canning, bushcraft and rod building to name a few. On top of that Ive been hunting, fishing, trapping, camping, canoeing, etc. my whole life. My stockpile is growing slowly every week but if I come up short I know I can barter my skills for goods throughout our MAG. Although we all have a pretty well rounded stockpile individually, we each have a specialty. My specialty is hunter/gatherer and general jack of trades, one persons specialty is grains, sugar and canned veggies, another persons is guns, ammo, and tactical location. You all have close friends and family that you wouldnt be able to turn away in a time of crisis. So dont. Get them on board with you. Create your own MAG. You may be able to survive on your own but I believe your odds are a lot better If youre in a small group of people you can trust.
This section is titled “Media Bashing” however most of you on this blog are obviously unaware of the much grander picture:
Perhaps it’s intentional- meaning that this site is simply “Managed Opposition.”
We’ll just have to see if this comment gets censored.
Some of you seem like Alex Jones listeners/victims:
I liked your article! It’s funny how you are branded as a loon if you have a bug out bag or guns and ammo etc. But in a SHTF scenario you are “The Guy”! I have never had to test my preps (Thank God) but I guess that I have always been a prepper since I was a young Boy Scout. I have never traveled without a comprehensive set of tools in case of mechanical break down (that alone has kept my butt and others out of trouble more than I can tell you!) but now that I have a family the are a few more items that get packed. Go bags for all, comprehensive first aid kit etc. I no longer explain my reasons to others, I just go and do my thing and figure it’s better to never be left wanting if there is something that a small amount of preparation can solve!
I like your style MT. It’s funny to how people will most always come to if they need something, because they know your peppered and always ready. They do this to me at work since I’ve been there for 7 years.
LOL I am the “fixit” guy in my family! I used to hate what I thought at the time as “being used” but now as I am getting a little older I am proud of the self reliance, knowledge and experience I possess that few others have. I was raised in a small town, thought I wanted city life but ATX is over rated these days and am pining to be back in a small town away from what is now little California, hopefully by the end of the year! Looking forward to a green house, gardening, and no neighbors looking over the fence into my business!
I never even knew about this end of the world thing until I came across it in blogs. I pslronaley am going to go to an end of the world party Mayan style at a museum. I really don’t believe the whole hub bub about it but it gives me an excuse to go to a party and dance so I’m all about it. And very true about the timing of everything because of different time zones and stuff, I swear there was a recent end of the world thing just a couple of years back. I lose track of all these apocolypse dates.
Do you have health insurance for you family? I did and do but have never had to use it. After the fact, for me, health insurance seems a waste, but odds are, I’ll need it at some point in the future, so I keep it.
Do you have life insurance on yourself and spouse so that those left behind will be ok? I do and know that one day, one or other of those policies will get used.
Do you have some sort of retirement plann? I had a few 401Ks and IRAs but cashed them in because the risk was far too high that they would vaporize – as mine did back in 2008, which, after losing more than 50% of their value, I figured that salvaging 40 something percent was better than zero percent.
Well, I personally think that if you have these forms of insurance to protect and safeguard your family and future but, you aren’t planning for physical emergencys, you are craizer than I could ever be.
I am 68 years old. I have lived in many remote and mountain areas most of my life, training horses and doing ranch work. My choice. I even had a cabin with no running water or electricity which I raised my 7 year old daughter for 2 years. She learned to grow food and be self sufficient. Now, many years later I still drive a jeep wagon with 7 days of mre’s and water, fishing gear, blankets, sleeping bag, first aid, emergency road gear. So call me a crazy person, but I will survive a snow storm or other disaster. Will you? I call it common sense. So you go on and laugh and we will see who survives and who panics when the stores and McDonalds close.
#9 We’re Anachronistic
As recently as two generations ago, almost everyone in the U.S. would have fit the definition of the Prepper. I certainly know my grandparents experiences growing up in an agrarian country entering a depression led to a lifetime of self-sufficiency…that’s just the way people lived.
I have been telling the people that know I have been putting food away that I did it wrong and it spoiled after a few of them said .. ya if shtf I am coming to your house.
(I have been telling the people that know I have been putting food away that I did it wrong and it spoiled after a few of them said .. ya if shtf I am coming to your house.)
I love it…
I am from the UK. Thanks for the laugh. Americans are perceived in Europe as being a laughing stock and you have just shown me why. I never realised before that there are some people who are serious about this. It is quite worrying that you are wandering around without a straight jacket.
Disasters don’t happen in the UK?
This from a guy living in a country that lost two wars against us, then had to bail them out twice in one century of world wars. The sun set on your empire my friend, have fun on your little island.
We didn’t bail them out. They were our allies. In fact, they were in the fight much longer than we were, if you’re talking about world war 2. Bail them out. There’s no end to conservative arrogance, is there? The conservative patriotism always ends short of them actually being patriotic in any real sense. It’s mostly just waving around flags and screaming at the top of their lungs about how superior they pretend to be.
LOL of course it’s a satire article to make you feel SUPER CLEVER!! The truth is you idiots wouldn’t be able to survive regardless because you have this plan in your mind of what would happen. Only intelligent people can adapt to the unknown and trust me, you retards not it!
Being a prepper means being in constant fear. It means you are afraid of the world and “the government”. It’s no way to really enjoy your life. “The government” you live in has never been the fearsome thing you make it out to be. Strange how you all talk about your “right to bear arms’ which is a bastardization of something “the government” wrote up in the form of a constitution. You know, that big scary government you all have such a problem with is the very one you think gave you the right to own a hoard of guns. It’s not what it actually says, but the NRA happily rewrote the constitution to fit their agenda, and most of you happily go along with it. This planet will not be inhabitable if what you hope happens, happens. The water, air and soil will all be destroyed and you’ll end up living a little bit longer (if you’re lucky) than the rest of us, but will end up dead just like the rest of us. I guess you’ll get the “victory” of living slightly longer than the rest of us in what will amount to an utter hell. But hey, you get to “win”, right? No amount of water filtration will last you forever, but you’ll finally get to live in the lawlessness you are all hoping for. Because every day you and a bunch of other people will be trying to constantly kill each other for your stuff. What a “wonderful” world you people imagine you’ll get to live in. For a very short time, of course. Because facing reality isn’t half as fun as living in a scary world filled with indoctrinated ideas from propagandists. Slowly dying from radiation poisoning or starvation seems like such a fun idea.
Electricity doesn’t keep your water from coming out of the tap. I had the electricity go off for several days and the water ran just fine. I don’t know what kind of weirdness you live in. This isn’t a big city, it’s a very small town in the woods.
I took a class once about how to obtain and store a year supply of food. The teacher made a comment that stuck with me: “Don’t worry so much about having to shoot someone to protect your stash of supplies. Consider that if you don’t prepare, you might be the one with gun shooting someone else to feed your kids because you didn’t prepare.” I thought it was an interesting take on the situation.