Why do we prep? Stockpile food, tools, a means to protect them (and us) from others who might wish to take them? Learn skills to make do without modern conveniences (like electricity) and the skills to protect what we have?

I figure it is insurance…and time.

I spend a little over $5 a week to stockpile food and materials which will give me a little bit of breathing room should the society in which I live go tits-up. Insurance against a time when the normal grocery stores full of food might have their just-in-time deliveries interrupted for a while…or for good. When the electricity which makes my life so easy for me stops doing so. When the natural gas which keeps me warm and which makes it so easy to cook food and gives me hot water for showering stops flowing.When your ,municipal water supply doesn’t.

Five dollars a week is all I spend. Seriously. An average of $5.00. I buy canned vegetables when it is a real bargain, and I store those cans in milk crates that I get for free. Rice and beans are also good items to find on sale and which store well, especially in a 5 gallon bucket with a few desiccant packs to keep it dry. $250 a year, more or less. Not much figured weekly though. Most of us spend more than that wastefully. A few less sodas, or one less Latte, or taking a sandwich rather than ordering from Arby’s for lunch once a week. But I can store a lot of food for that $5.00 a week.

But besides a bit of peace of mind, what am I really accomplishing? It takes a LOT of food to feed 10 people for a year (to pick a number). That is nearly 11,000 meals……that is 7,000 pounds of rice (or an equivalent amount of beans, or about 6000 cans of vegetables, or 4500 cans of Dinty Moore or Spaghettios. That’s a lot of space and a lot of weight. That assumes, of course, that you eat exclusively from your storage food. And realistically, unless you have resources that most of us do not, you cannot store an infinite amount of food, due to cost considerations if not space issues. That 7000 pounds of rice? Realistically that is a little more than 2 pallets of rice…or one of rice and one of beans. Few of us have enough space to store that much. 3 pallets of cans. I don’t have that much storage space, unless I clean out the garage….

But you CAN store a surprising number of meals with a little bit of judicious adjustments and some smart thinking. Put a layer or two of cans in the bottom of your closets…Cover with a blanket or towel. Put a board across the tops….You have used your space wisely. Same with under your bed. You can store a lot of calories under a bed. Not enough to last forever, but a lot…..maybe a shelf in the basement (if you have a basement). But with some thinking and ingenuity you can find a place for a few dozen cans/ a few pounds of rice. (a milk crate holds 32 cans, more or less)…

What you are really buying with your $5 a week is to have TIME. Time to adjust your lifestyle. Time to plant a few seeds to have a garden and have the plants bear. Time to figure out what to do, how to live BEFORE you starve.  Time to deal with the new conditions you may find and experience. Time to figure out how things will change, and what will work and what won’t. Time to learn. Time to adjust. Breathing space, as it were.

Likely, you are a resourceful person. But no one knows what might happen, what conditions we might find….if and when. That $5.00 each week buys you TIME. Time which may well be as valuable as anything else when you need it to decide a course of action. Time to choose your path. Breathing space so you can make calm, informed decisions. Time which others will not have.

What are you prepping for? Really yer prepping for the future. Might be a bank crash/economic “realignment”. Might be a software worm that makes modern electronic banking stop working. Might be a terrorist attack. Might be a natural disaster (’cause FEMA and the local folks did so well post Katrina, didn’t they?) Might be an internet attack on our infrastructure, causing electricity to stop for a while. Might be any number of scenarios. No matter what happens (if anything) you, because of your preps, will have bought yourself some time to deal with the issues. Time most people will not have. 

And that time may well be worth more than anything….Yer preps will be a great value when that happens.

One thought on “Insurance

  1. Good write-up Mr. B. The Karl family is in catch-up mode, so a bit more spent lately to get a healthy stash.

    The books Survivor and One Second After are scary stories, but great planning tools to think of the things one will need if/when the shelves are bare.

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