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#29026 - 07/12/04 08:40 AM SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
NY RAT Offline

Registered: 09/19/03
Posts: 256
Loc: brooklyn, ny
when it comes to friends and family im the only one who believes in being prepared and learning survival skills.

while discussing it with a friend recently they asked me why, i told them because i like the idea of knowing how to live off the land if it became necessary.

because of my naturally curious nature ive always been interested in learning about primitive skills, just as others have done for thousands of years.

so i find "survival skills" to be facinating and believe more should learn them and pass them on, again the being prepared mindset.

i admit im very opinionated and i like to talk alot in general, so to baffle me isnt easy.
but then they said something that i didnt have a response for at the time.

"what happens when they drop the bombs in new york?
which in this day and age is possible.
you would either be killed outright from the blast or so hurt and or sick you`d wish you were dead and probably kill yourself as soon as your able.
no amount of stored food and water or the other survival gear you collected would save you."

i honestly didnt have anything to say against that, but for a minute it did make me second guess everything ive been doing very strongly.

i thought my friend had a point, and i will be living in NY probably for quite awhile due to personal obligations, and we all know NY is a big target.

and its not that im so well skilled (hardly) or well stocked (barely) that i expect to survive, but for some strange reason i honestly feel if TSHTF odds are i probably would be alive afterwards i cant honestly explain why.
you know the universe has a STRANGE sense of humor and it might let me live just to prove it.
so now my answer to her was \ is that its also some peace of mind knowing that my being prepared may help me (or others) in the future if needed, because im taking some sort of control over doing things instead of just going with the flow like everyone else.

so my question to everyone is the same as the title "why do we do this?"

what really ARE the odds we would survive a nuke or chemical blast and be well enough to use our skills to survive well enough in a new world?

even if its not about a threat like that, then why do you do it?
what do you get out of it personally?
been gone so long im glad to be back

#29027 - 07/12/04 09:54 AM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
Tjin Offline

Registered: 04/08/02
Posts: 1772
i'm not preparing for a nuke or other WMD's, most of use prepare ourself for more likely accurents, ranging from earth quacks to power failure. Like on the front page, it says this is not a "survivalist" site.

We are not planning to survive on a long term base with just our kits, just long enough to get back to cilivisation or help to arrive. Or the problem has been solved.

#29028 - 07/12/04 10:13 AM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
joblot Offline

Registered: 02/21/03
Posts: 258
Loc: Scotland
Trying to rationalize all your actions is doomed to failure. You might be a fanatical stamp collector for no other reason except the satisfaction it brings you. If one day a friend comes along and starts mocking you for the amount of time and money your spending on what amounts to sticky bits of paper, does that make stamp collecting wrong?
Preparing for a disaster might not increase your chances of survival at all, but its no more of a waste of time than stamp collecting.
As for my reasons for "being prepared"? As I mentioned in
a previous post its brought a good deal of order to my way of living. I'm forever learning learning new skills and aquiring knowledge. (everything from building shelters to learning how fast I 'm going to hit the ground whilst trapped in a falling elevator!). Above all though its peace of mind, a kind of alternative investment plan which I hope will never get used.
Lastly it's fun. Trying to light a fire in a force 10 gale with rain lashing against your face, I find comical and slightly ridiculous, but I still enjoy trying. If at the end of the day, our survival skills are never used, we'll all have good stories to tell our grand children.

#29029 - 07/12/04 12:24 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
Craig Offline

Registered: 11/13/01
Posts: 1784
Loc: Collegeville, PA, USA
For me, as a nerdy geek type who programs all day long under fluorescent lighting, it's fun. I like having with me something someone needs. I like being prepared.

On the serious side, I don't want to be part of the panicked multitude if/when an emergency occurs. I want to know enough and be prepared enough to get home. Or to hold out until help arrives.

On the lighter side, I want to live long enough to be a burden to my younger sister. <img src="/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

#29030 - 07/12/04 01:05 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
boatman Offline

Registered: 03/10/03
Posts: 424
Loc: Michigan
It surprises me that the more I learn of survival the less I need.A lot of the things we have are just a security blanket but knowledge provides.If I am still breathing I CAN do something to improve my situation.It just takes the willpower and energy to do it

#29031 - 07/12/04 02:03 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
red_jeep Offline

Registered: 01/22/02
Posts: 54
Loc: Raleigh, NC
Probably like the rest of us, I, too, rest easier knowing that I'm prepared for however the cards are dealt.

I've come to these 2 conclusions:
1) no matter what the scenario, the odds are in your favor that you'll make it, and more so if you're more prepared
2) it's the stupid, little stuff that usually gets you. (ie more people are killed in car wrecks because they weren't using their seat bets than those by chemical weapons). It comes down to reducing risk. I know there's some saying about a superior sailor using his superior judgement so he doesn't have to use his superior skills.

I recently attended a presantation entitled "Mother nature is still the greatest terrorist". It drives the point home that the survival situations we're most likely to encounter are fires, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, ice storms, etc. and that we can learn a lot about preparedness in general, by knowing what it takes to be prepared for a natural disaster. In NC, more people usually die cleaning up from hurricanes (heart attacks, accidents, etc.) than from the actual storm. (see conclusion #2)

So, short of an out and out nuclear holocaust, the sheer numbers are pretty much always in your favor.

#29032 - 07/12/04 03:07 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
Dan-e-boy Offline

Registered: 11/22/03
Posts: 52
Loc: Pennsylvania
I think the answer to this question is simple...just being prepared is a common sense "no brainer".... it doesn't have to be a wilderness situation or a terrorist situation... I take pleasure in my own urban preparedness...what happens if the car breaks down on a deserted highway in a snowstorm? what happens if you are in a building during a powerfailure and you are in the pitch black? Just having some basic items to make yourself and your situation as comfortable as possible is the reason I do it...My everyday carry is a mirror image of Doug's "Don't leave home without it" gear, and I don't know how many times I have used each of thses pieces of gear to make a bad situation more bearable...how many times (before you learned to be prepared) did you have to confront situations that were very stressful or uncomfortable that could have been a "walk in the park" had you been prepared...being prepared just makes things easier when the going gets tough !! <img src="/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

#29033 - 07/12/04 03:43 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?

Registered: 12/09/02
Posts: 204
Loc: Long Island, New York
You could have worse hobbies than being prepared. It doesn't have to be for TEOTWAWKI, either. I'm talking about the hurricanes and blackouts that occasionally hit our area. Primitive skills are fun to learn. Learning how to make fire without matches might even win a few bar bets. <img src="/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

#29034 - 07/12/04 04:14 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
M_a_x Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 1064
Loc: Germany
For me the basic skills are definitely fun stuff. I´m also a bit curious. The aquired skills and accumulated stuff in my pocket frequently help to solve everday problems. Those are definitely positive side effects. In addition the practice helps to avoid the usual traps.
Mastering some basic skills also helps to understand advanced techniques (just think about math and pocket calculators). If nothing else the preparedness is recreation.
You could easily exploit the extreme example for your purpose. It may be true that you get killed when they drop the bomb on your residence. On the other hand if takes such extremities to prove that your preparations are insufficient, there can´t be much you have to worry about.
My experience also shows that the little things usually get you. So IMHO being prepared for those gives a lot comfort and peace of mind.
Eventually you´re going to die anyway. Of course there´s no reason to hurry it or to miss opportunities to enjoy your life just because someone thinks you´re wasting your time with things you like.
If it isn´t broken, it doesn´t have enough features yet.

#29035 - 07/12/04 05:51 PM Re: SURVIVAL - why do we do this?
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
The threat of annihilation to humanity is a very old part of our psyches and cultures. We came very close to getting snuffed out in europe during the Ice Age and many world religons record, or predict catastrophy; Hinduism has Vishnu the destroyer, Tuetonic/ Scandinavian people Gotterdammerung, Christianity the Tribulation and Hopi predictions of this world ending. We've endured everything from biblical blights of locusts, The Black Death, The Holocost, nuclear bombs and accidents. Quess what? There were survivors. Those european reindeer hunters went on to live in flea infested cities and then kill their nieghbors in two horrific world wars. Now we're doing our best to trash the planet globally. The attitude " we will all die in a major catastrophy anyway" is a self indulgent reaction not unlike burrowing deeper in the blankets when the alarm goes off. It's easier to hope the party won't end and that somebody else will solve the problems without to much inconvenience to us. These are the people who buy surplus gas masks and think the problem is solved.

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