Ready for TEOTWAWKI: What’s Bringing Us Along – Part 1, by K.G.

As we age, we need to understand our new limitations and be able to adapt to them, overcome the ones we can and add new skills commensurate with our abilities. The timeless adage “if I knew then what I know now” is quite applicable to my prepping and survival journey. The focus of this article will be on adding new skills that will complement our existing skill set so that we can still be of service and not just survive but thrive in a TEOTWAWKI scenario.

The Importance of Family and Like-Minded Friends

Having a wife and family members that are on board is a huge asset and probably one of if not the most important aspect of preparedness. No man is an island, nor should we try to be when it comes to survival. The most important group of people that should be involved in your efforts are those that live with you. I am blessed to have a family that has a preparedness mindset. My wife as I will demonstrate throughout this article has accepted the challenge of being prepared. She is continually looking for ways to enhance our position in preparing for TEOTWAWKI.

I am fortunate to have a very like-minded wife. She is not turning a blind eye to what is going on around us. It was not easy at first to create buy in with her. Initially, I did not push, but I proposed things for her to look at and allowed her to reach her own conclusions. When a person allows themselves to look objectively at the truth, understanding will come quickly. There are now many days when I come home from work and my wife is pointing out issues out to me.

The Impact of Age and Health

I am now over 50 years old and I do not possess the physical abilities that I had 20 years ago. I am not nearly as fit as I was even 10 years ago. When I was forty, I graduated from a special teams training program at the department of corrections where I worked. It was a proud accomplishment in and of itself but being the second oldest person to ever complete the program made it more special. I turned 40 on the last day of training. We were roused out of our racks in the middle of the night to celebrate my special day with 40 push-ups, 40 mountain climbers, 40 Iron Mike’s et al…   Along with basic training it is one of my proudest accomplishments.

Not only am I in decline in my physical strength, but my overall medical health is not the best. I will spare you all the intimate details but suffice it to say some of my medical issues involve, high blood pressure, gastrointestinal and other conditions that leave me susceptible to infection which could possibly leave me compromised in a TEOTWAWKI scenario. After years of making poor lifestyle choices I have lowered my general health to the point that I cannot return to where I was, but I can work to prevent further deterioration.

My Efforts

I will now show how I am addressing these issues to make myself more of an asset and less of a liability in the event of TEOTWAWKI. What I will recommend is not for everyone. I have only recently started prepping over concern for the downward spiral that our moral, social, political and economic systems are in. I have been seriously prepping for less than seven years. Hopefully most of you have a good skillset and do not need this advice. But, the one thing I have learned in my prepping journey is that I can never learn enough. Knowledge is as important as equipment, possibly more so. It is my prayer that this is a blessing to all and a help to those that seek it.

Physical Condition

The first thing I have started is a physical exercise regimen. After leaving the department of corrections my job became less physical. I still move around at work but training to pass the physical fitness test had gone by the wayside as I don’t have to pass a test to remain on a team. I don’t train nearly as hard as I did, but I do ensure that I get plenty of exercise. I spend a lot of time walking and hiking. I occasionally hike with a pack. Not only is this great exercise, but it is a skill that may be needed during TEOTWAWKI.

I am a bowhunter, so this walking and hiking exercise regimen also helps me to be able to perform that task as well. As I have always hunted, I do not consider this as adding to my skillset, but if you do not hunt, this is something you should consider. Becoming proficient with a bow and arrow could help provide you with food in the event that the stores have closed or have been decimated. It is also a very stealthy method of self-defense. These could be very valuable skills in TEOTWAWKI.

Self-Defense

Another part of my growth is learning self-defense. Apart from what was taught at the department of corrections, I have never seriously studied any self-defense or martial arts program. I have chosen to study Krav-Maga. After having looked at the number of different programs that are available, I choose Krav Maga because of its efficacy and simplicity. What Krav Maga teaches are real-world type scenarios that can be practiced by a wide variety of participants of varying abilities. Krav Maga puts forth a highly aggressive style that should catch a perpetrator off guard by the amount of resistance they will face. Most attackers look for the weak and vulnerable so when that aggression is returned, they usually will not be prepared for it. Additionally, this is something used by the Israeli military. I know enough about military systems that if Israel uses it, it must be good.

I have also recruited my son to study Krav Maga with me. For anyone that has studied any martial art or self-defense skill, you know that you cannot just go to class once or twice a week and progress in that skill. The skills must be practiced outside of class to develop the muscle memory needed to make them effective in a real-life situation. So, not only do I have a built-in training partner, but in the event that these skills need to be employed in an actual self-defense situation, I will have a partner that I am very familiar with when we need to defend ourselves, our home and our families during TEOTWAWKI.

Medical Skills

Another skill I am gaining is First Aid and CPR. This was required at the department of corrections, but I had let it slip since I left the department. I failed to realize how important this skill will be in a TEOTWAWKI scenario. Not only have I taken basic first aid through the local safety council, I have assembled quite an extensive first aid kit. I have many items in the kit, but many of the items in there I have never used before. Take the Israeli bandage for example, I have never used one of those. An additional bandage was also purchased to practice application. My son and training partner comes in handy for situations like these so we can learn practical application.

Another area of our medical preparations is in using food for health. I will cover this in more detail in a later section but suffice it to say there exists many natural and herbal remedies that will effectively replace chemical alternatives. Waiting to discover these until you need it is failing to plan. It is important to begin a study of these now. And not only to study them but try them out to see what works and what doesn’t and what needs to be changed so that it will be effective when needed.

Communications

Another skill I am developing is that of amateur radio. I recently received my technician ticket and am now becoming proficient in the use of an alternate method of communication. I have volunteered to serve as a net control operator for the local radio club. This not only gives me and other amateurs the opportunity to practice radio communications, but it has exposed me to many individuals with a wealth of knowledge in this art. This network of people has already been and will continue to be a vast resource in amateur radio operations.

This spring I will be attending a Storm Spotter training class. As a qualified storm spotter, I will gain valuable knowledge that will help in the event of severe weather. The training scenarios and the actual deployments will also provide a means for practicing radio communications. One can never get enough practice in any area. Radio is no different. The ability to help the community is a bonus.

Along with growing my skills in amateur radio, I have acquired several handheld radios that should last me a lifetime if not abused. As recommended on SurvivalBlog, I purchased a large quantity of the Baofeng UV-5R handheld transceivers before their sale was restricted due to the radio’s ability to broadcast on the FRS bands. There are many complaints against this radio, but they are $20 – $25 each. What you get is a transceiver that can help you communicate effectively either through a repeater or simplex. As part of my prepping, I am also teaching my family the basics of radio operation on the Baofengs. I have cards printed out containing the FRS and GMRS frequencies and we routinely practice communicating on them. This also helps us test the range of the radios under different conditions. It doesn’t do any good to have 10 plus radios if you have no one to talk to. Get your family involved.

I have also joined the American Redoubt Radio Operators Network (AMRRON) in an attempt to meet like-minded patriots here where I live. I participate in the Channel 3 project, but I am yet to contact another AMRRON member. I have contacted one individual via e-mail who lives close. I will have to keep pushing and eventually something will get established here.

(To be concluded tomorrow, in Part 2.)




19 Comments

  1. In a successful society the elders bring the knowledge and the wisdom and the young bring the strength and hustle.

    Proven time and time again in Viking Cultures where villages were walled to protect from sudden attack and a ready sword and shield could be needed for a pre-dawn attack that although youthful strength was important. The knowledge of the elders was often the survival edge. Villages that scorned and often banished their elders MIGHT have been successful raiders for a season or two failed because of the lack of Elders knowledge base for medical, food production, how to DO things besides killing other surprised villages.

    Elders prepare to lead the youth with wisdom and knowledge. And maybe post SHTF those youths will become Elders to continue the cycle of passing on knowledge and wisdom.

    1. Which is why I’ve advocated for us to start building Communities that take the young and old into account and have places and duties for each of them to fulfill…The problem is people have a hard time trusting each other to start banding together to do that…A lot of preppers have the mindset of hiding out until the crisis blows over which then you don’t get a vote in what kind of society emerges from the crisis… Something to think about…

  2. I am right there with you Brother. As a Young Man, I was a Paratrooper and “Light” Infantryman for 10 years. After the Army, I was a Jail CERT Officer, as well as a Member of the Sheriff’s SWAT team. Now, at 55, and after two knee replacement surgeries, I just can’t do what I did at 20. Like you, I am trying to retain some Strength and Flexibility with Combative Training and weights.
    In my Small Town though, I run into former, “Customers” all the time, So Mr. Glock is my constant companion. Hang in there Brother.

  3. Senilicide is the killing off of old people, like the common misperception that Eskimos put their elder folk on ice floes and sent them off to their deaths in an icy sea. That may have happened during severe famines. When food ran short, the old and infirm might be abandoned and left to die. But in times of abundance, no one was ever abandoned because they were a burden. If a family member did kill or harm an elder, they were socially stigmatized.

  4. You will always be better served to use the least legally harmful (to yourself) means of self defense. Sure you should get/have a gun. But don’t use it unless you have no other choice. Walk away from an argument or a “deranged” individual. If they are persistent and you cannot get away be prepared to protect yourself by other means than drawing a gun. On the day you use a gun against another human your life will change forever and not in a good way.

    Much of this can be avoided by using your head and your eyes. Recognize a bad situation and extract yourself from it early.

  5. It’s true. Elders can bring tremendous knowledge and wisdom to any situation or circumstance. This was an important thought, and well said. A time will come when youth will need everything their elders can bring to the round table of survival.

    Something else to consider is how the Left seeks to recruit the young who lack experience, have grown up in a culture filled with pathology, and are all too often impulsive, emotional, and are too easily led. Be watchful and cautious. Understand the difficulty and danger this presents to them — and to the rest of us. Instill healthy values in young people at every turn by example and constructive teaching.

    As we’re north of 50 ourselves, a number of our own efforts are dedicated to safety associated with accessibility and risks associated with aging. We live in a one level home, and have eliminated the fall risk of stairs. We have raised commodes, and have added grip bars in and around features of the bathrooms. We replaced tubs with walk-in reduced slip risk showers. We have added high quality pads for areas where we spend a lot of time standing for joint support including the kitchen. We’ve added mattress pads to our bed which help improve general comfort and quality of sleep. We’ve created level, sturdy pathways with the addition of a couple sidewalks and patio space. In every way possible, we are working to maintain our independence as we age — and at the same time to remain prepared. In fact, we would suggest that all of this goes hand-in-hand! Some projects are small and incidental. Others are larger and geared toward infrastructure. Every effort counts.

    Be prepared. Remain steady. Stay safe everyone!

  6. “Waiting to discover these until you need it is failing to plan. It is important to begin a study of these now. And not only to study them but try them out to see what works and what doesn’t and what needs to be changed so that it will be effective when needed.”

    Well put! This idea has a very broad application in every aspect of preparation. If the grid went down permanently tomorrow morning, most of us would soon realize that we failed miserably to prepare because we insisted in having one foot in the world of modern conveniences and couldn’t step out of that long enough to get some real grid-down experience to put us in the correct frame of mind to figure out what we really needed to prepare for. And the things we do know we need, we didn’t get proficient with them ahead of time to make sure they work, or were the best choice, as K.G. points out. I think gardening probably tops the list here, it’s not something you learn overnight, or even in a few years. And it takes years to build your soil up to something decent.

    K.G., thanks for reminding me that I don’t know diddly about first aid, I don’t even have a decent radio aside from those in my vehicles, and I’ve wanted to get a bow since forever but keep putting that off too. More items for the 2020 resolutions list.

  7. Excellent article for people who are older.
    It’s not wise to plan for X if your age is against you. It’s better to plan for limited abilities when you have the time and society functioning.

    We planned years ago for a single floor home and Praise The Lord the timing worked out well.
    Now to home improvements for bathrooms.
    Just a note that most serious injuries happen when an older person falls.
    Take ever precaution to prevent it.

  8. Your comments are very much “Real Life”… Thank you for your honesty. I am a few years ahead of you, working through the aging process. Seems you are covering it well. My only comment is to turn a critical eye towards the “Prescription Medications” that will be pushed on you. I won’t make a pitch for any of the many books about meds. 20 year old books can be found for a few dollars. Honestly that is where the best information can be found, before the propaganda and money got into medicine. Every time you have blood work done there is a “Range” they want you to be in. Question just exactly who set the parameter’s of the range. Big Pharmaceutical set’s the range so as to sell you more prescription meds. All the training, prepping and supplies won’t do you any good if you are incapacitated.

    Thanks,

    Hobo

  9. I am curious about the age demographics of individuals reading Survivalblog? I have the impression that 80% are in their 60’s minimum! Seems like most Millennials, Gen X and Gen Y are not interested. They have careers and raising families which take their time and money.

    1. I can’t speak for the overall demographic on the blog, but I am a 31 year old teacher. I teach high school agriculture. I strive to teach my students useful skills that they can use to grow food, build and repair equipment, manage forest land properly.
      With that being said, I do notice that many of my peers, and my students, don’t take the need to prepare seriously at all, and tend to mock or joke about those of us who encourage them to store food and supplies, and build up their survival skills.

      1. Wes , We are a rural couple in our 50’s with land , woods and gardening space and I often wonder how we could find younger people interested in trading labor for knowledge, produce and firewood. Most people we talk to do not share our desire to be prepared. Trusting new people with the details of your home is hard enough and would be necessary while educating people. Family unwilling or unable to participate. I have considered local colleges as potential for candidates , but my being pro gun, carnivorous and republican could turn them off . Any insight from you as an educator? Thank you and keep up the good work.

          1. Lineman, I also support community building and do what I am able to help my neighbors. Many neighbors return the favor but lack interest in the bigger picture. There are a few like minded people at varying levels of interest in the area but a unified effort eludes us. Have you gained ground with your community building? Thank you for your comment and keep up the good work.

  10. Radios

    If the intent is to use the Baofeng UV5R on FRS/GMRS radio, the antenna that comes with those radios is not designed for those frequencies, and should be replaced with the Nagyoa NA-107C. However, I would prefer to use the inexpensive lower powered FRS radio that are limited to 250mw and a fixed antenna, if the range of this radio is sufficient. Why? We want to limited how many persons, including the bad guys, who can hear us. The bad guys are likely to have FRS/GMRS radios. I would therefore rather use MURS, or 70cm on low power. Of course if there were a complete societal breakdown, I might the Baofeng business band frequencies. Most of the stock antennas that come with the Baofeng UV-5R that have a squared off, or flat tip, test good for 144 to 154 Mhz.

    Here are the ‘high VHF’ business band frequencies that most stock Baofeng antennas are good for.

    151.505 M
    151.5125 M
    151.625 M Red Dot
    151.64 M
    151.7 M
    151.76 M
    151.955 M Purple Dot

    The intent is to use ‘off the beaten path’ frequencies few others, and especially the bad guy would have access to. If you have the Nagoya NA-107C antenna you could use 150 to 162 Mhz, and 450 to 470 Mhz. This means the UHF business band could also be used after a societal collapse. Prior to a WROL situation, operate legally on Radio Services such as MURS, FRS and GMRS. UHF frequencies tend to propagate about half as well as does VHF in heavily forested areas, and few are aware of these frequencies. And they happen to fall where common radios such as FRS/GMRS, and MURS operate, making contact with neighbors more convenient. I would also avoid using the Ham bands for secure communications during a WROL unless I used directional antennas, and other methods to secure the transmission.

    451.8 M
    451.8125 M
    456.8 M
    456.8125 M
    464.5 M Brown Dot
    464.55 M Yellow Dot
    464.6 M
    464.625 M
    464.65 M
    464.7 M
    464.725 M
    464.75 M
    467.75 M
    467.7625 M J Dot
    467.775 M
    467.8 M
    467.8125 M K Dot
    467.825 M
    467.85 M Silver Star
    467.875 M Gold Star
    467.9 M Red Star
    467.925 M Blue Star
    469.5 M
    469.55 M
    469.6 M
    469.625 M
    469.65 M
    469.7 M
    469.725 M
    469.75 M

  11. Getting old, sickly, and less physically able does represent a serious change in our capabilities. However, we can be still be self sufficient if we use our brains more often than less our brawn. It is a life style change, that means we need to work smarter, and a lot less harder. Changes in diet and exercise can change our lives as well. I’ve suffered debilitating illnesses for over a decade, while under going the loss of all of my once middle class life style. Yet the Lord provided, and built up my faith. Do not give up. I will spare you all the boring details, but I’ve seen the worst most can imagine, and came out just fine, and stronger than ever. Old age does not mean life is over, just different. Do anticipate these changes and find ways now to compensate, and trust in the Lord. He is indeed faithful.

    1. A most excellent message, Tunnel Rabbit. Even through transitions and tough times, life is not over… It is just different. …and through those experiences we have the opportunity to grow in our Faith. God doesn’t always take us around the storms. Sometimes he takes us right straight through them to the other side. My husband and I also understand this in ways only those who have gone through the forge can. Thank you for sharing with all of us. What we know with certainty is that God is Faithful.

  12. We may be old, but I remember seeing the sign someone posted on their front gate.

    “If you can read this sign you are within range”

    Good night dear friends.

  13. In responding to “K.G.” after reading both part 1 & 2 of “Ready for TEOTWAWKI: What’s Bringing Us Along” – Part 2, by K.G., I would have preferred to have settled for writing directly to the author to thank him for a very good article, and as well to mention some parallels (age, Dept. of Corrections) we share.

    Since I cannot find a way to message this author directly I am hoping he will see this here instead. Sorry for the length. I’ve been following James Wesley Rawles since I read Patriots in 2004, a full four years before I was “awake”. I have been a lurker here for many years now.

    At sixty now I have to do yearly defensive tactics training with a little more care as to who I partner up with and warm the hell up before we all start with the regular warmups.

    One year, not long ago I did our “DT’s” with a broken rib and another time with a broken big toe. But we have to pass this thing to keep our jobs.

    About three years ago I was called by my eleven year younger brother with the news that he had a positive test result for prostate cancer and he wanted me to know since I am his “closest genetic relative”.

    Our father died a miserable death the day after 9-11-01 from prostate cancer and my brother was obviously scared. He had his prostate removed within three months and from what I understand his sex life has been hampered since. Badly.

    Mine however is STELLAR and a recent blood test showed my testosterone to be at about what a twenty-five year olds is. I’m not wanting to cut out the root of that positivity. (no pun intended)

    I began to study the hell out of prostate cancer immediately and started doing a very serious internal cleansing program and also used some substances that would cause mainstream sheeple alarm most likely.

    Not to go into exact specifics but one can look up Walter Last, Rick Simpson and Jim Humble just for starters and you can see that my approach was nothing to do with mainstream killer “Standard of Care” death sentence the mainstream medical/big pharma imposes on you after sucking you into the poor house and spits you out the other side broke and dead.

    I decided to write this piece hoping somebody may benefit or at least think a bit before running in and having parts cut out or blasted with radiation or chemo which wrecks your immune system to begin with.

    The real eye opener shortly after doing my internal cleanse program was that the anti-parasitic part of what I was doing caused, over a couple months span, the elimination of either five separate parasites or possibly two or three at different life stages.

    Suffice it to say I was not expecting this and especially not the first little specimen which resembled a hydra and was a multi-appendage worm conglomeration which met at a common trunk.

    The really creepy thing was that I peed this thing out (and broken chunks of the same critters) after coming home from work after taking some anti-parasitics before work that day.

    I usually do “one for the road” (urinate) before I go home from work at the end of my shift and it felt like thick gravy when I peed but I was in a hurry and couldn’t see anything unusual.

    When I got home it was almost 2300 and my wife was at my mom’s house (caretaking elderly mom). I told her what I saw and showed it to her in the same jar the next day. She freaked out.

    For the next week or so I peed chunks of tendril like worms that were white at the tips and pink down the rest of the way and the whole one I initially saw was the same but had a dark red base where it broke off from wherever it was attached.

    This sounds crazy I know but at least my wife witnessed two of the five “space petting zoo creatures”. I wish I’d taken pictures but I didn’t have my own cell phone at the time.

    The second creature looked sort of like a 3/4 inch hollow bag, like a little kidney with half a dozen segmented wormlike appendages sticking out. Deader than a door nail.

    On another occasion within the next couple weeks there were also approximately forty to fifty white worms that looked like segmented “inch worms” that were defecated out and due to my particular diet/cleansing regimen that day, landed in just water with nothing to obstruct my view.

    My wife would have witnessed it but she was tending to a brunch with my mom and a friend and I heard my mom saying she needed to use the bathroom and the one I was in was the closest to her and her very slow moving walker.

    So I have no witnesses to that event nor two other bigger individual worms that were nothing like the others.

    So believe me or not. I am putting this down here because from what I have seen in the meanwhile with the POSSIBILITY of Morgellons, and other weird crap (no pun intended), I believe that way more people are crawling with parasites than have the faintest clue.

    On the flipside of this however, is that after my initial many months of self-treatment, goody two-shoe diet and such, I felt twenty years younger two years ago and that spring was somewhat proud of the fact that I was easily working twice as hard with half the breaks (which were half as long) as my twenty-nine year old step-son when I’d just turned fifty-eight.

    I’d just put in the biggest and best garden ever and felt like a million bucks.

    I don’t know if I’m out of the woods on the “C” word but I appreciate Walter Last’s philosophy on the avoidance of the “C” diagnosis in the first place as stress does no good for the immune system.

    That said, that’s mainly because “C” in the prostate is a slower thing than anything cardiac and for that I don’t rely on my methods other than eating right, certain healthy supplements and exercise.

    Because high BP and cardiac related issues can have sudden bad results I am not “self treating” that end of things but I most definitely am for now on any possibility of “C” in my prostate.

    It would be a nice feature to be able to message an author directly and my apologies to anyone having a problem with my off-topic-ness here.

    Happy and healthy prepping!

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