In these Interesting Times™️, I feel like it's important to realize that "prepping" is actually good.

Like any good thing, there are weirdos who take it too far, but I'm not talking about them. I'm talking about normal, prudent steps that you can take to mitigate the day-to-day effects of a snowstorm overloading the power grid in your state, or people hoarding all the TP, hand sanitizer, fuel/food/cash/medicine, etc.

I sometimes remember that people don't know about this stuff, so: a thread

I realize that not everyone has the money or space to do everything, but these tips are adaptible to different situations.

It's not a bad idea to buy some sealed containers of drinking water--even just a gallon or two. Put them under your bed, in your attic/basement/garage, in the back of a closet, and forget about them. This can be enough to keep you hydrated while you're evacuating a city, or enough to wait out a water/power outage for several days. Thirst and/or dirty water will kill you.

Likewise, it's not a bad idea to have a stash of canned/otherwise shelf-stable food. Imagine a supply-chain disruption that takes out all the fresh produce we've become accustomed to--people will panic and head for the shelves. You don't need to fuck around with this if you keep a modest, balanced supply of canned soups, fruit, beans, tuna/chicken, flour, oil, peanut butter, whatever you eat.

You also want to USE your stash of canned food and replace it as needed.

This does not need to be 5-gallon buckets of EPHRAIM MCRIFLEMAN'S SURVIVAL CHOW or whatever. It's just some extra cans of chili/pineapple to put in the back of your pantry or under your bed with those gallons of water you also bought in case of an emergency.

Next grocery trip, buy a can of something for this purpose. Get in the habit of looking for recipes that use canned food. This will definitely involve your grandma's church potluck cookbook.

If you have the money for it, consider spending a good chunk of cash on a well-stocked first-aid kit--like a couple hundred dollars. You can find reviews online.

If you own a weapon, you should be comfortable handling it. Take a training course. Don't be a fool.

Don't forget things like pet food, prescriptions, toilet paper, offline activities like board/card games and books, candles, lighters/matches, rain ponchos, rubber boots, extra socks... whatever you wouldn't want to be caught without.


In the event that things get REAL weird, any of the above items can be used for barter. Consider also buying some baby/menstrual supplies even if you don't have a baby or a period.

Another thing you can get is a "72-hour kit," which is basically a backpack full of stuff to keep you on your feet for 3 days following an emergency. My parents gave me one when I left home, because Mormonism. I keep it in my car. You can find DIY instructions online, and I'm pretty sure you can buy ready-made ones.

That's about all my "prepping for normal people" tips. Remember: if the emergency is happening, it's already too late. Buy some food and water now, and look out for your neighbors who can't stock up.

@alpine_thistle now that we live in a house with actual space... though also the thought of actually cooking/eating through the canned stuff periodically gives me a bit of 😬 but... yeah, I have 20lb bags of 2 kinds of rice, 5lbs of red dried lentils, 2.5lbs of dried chickpeas... really need some more black beans, etc... and yeah, canned stuff too. I do have some lovely jarred olives!

@alpine_thistle (also water, I buy distilled water for my iron and try to keep some gallons on hand)

@platypus yeah I buy flour, rice, etc in bulk because I'm a miser lol

My parents are the "#10 cans full of whole wheat" people, and my mom actually rotated through that shit and made stuff out of it. In her words: "you have to get your digestive system used to it! If something happens and you have to start eating your food storage, you're going to be REALLY uncomfortable if you're not ready for that much fiber!"

@alpine_thistle right and like—i mostly wanna eat fresh food or dried stuff… because I can. But also yeah I don’t want it to waste and stomach…well

@alpine_thistle re the TP - Dec 2019 I looked in the cupboard and thought "I've really overdone the TP stock. I should let it run down." Jan 2020 I didnt buy any. February hit with, well, you know! It was JUNE before we ran out (by which time we could buy it again) (and, yes, we did make efforts for minimal use to get that far). I will never think I've overdone storage of a staple again - we never know whats going to happen...

@alpine_thistle couple follow-ups, from someone living in an "irregular urban development":

- keep batteries.

- keep some bottles of tap water around, apart from drinking water

- keep good, long lasting candles around, and *both* lighters and matches.

- learn how to start a fire, for warming yourself up or cooking food.

These or yours are not really *prepping* as in white doomsday folk, it's daily life for poor folks in non-developed countries, e.g. me and family ~10-15 years ago.

@alpine_thistle We still have regular electric and water outages here, and while thankfully it's not week(s) long like in the past, it *sucks* to get caught w/o any water to wash yourself with, especially.

But as countries get richer, more and more of us tend to forget these stuff and only try to remember them when systems are disrupted.

Preppers are a whole another bunch, they are doing what they are doing to preserve personal privilege, not to survive and help survive.

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