10 Steps to Survive an Apocalypse

The last blog was fairly deep, so this one is therefore lighter in tone. Here, gleaned from post-apocalyptic movies and my own twisted ideas, is how to survive the end of world – in a very literal sense. I plan on surviving, don’t you?

Step 1 –             Do not live in a major city, especially anywhere near the downtown, or major landmarks. Move out of town. Potentially into a castle or something that’s already proved it can survive pretty much anything.

Think of Independence Day, Terminator 3, or practically any other invasion or war movie: the major cities and landmarks ALWAYS get destroyed first. Disease spreads far easier in dense populations. Therefore, get out of town. Hopefully far enough to survive the nuclear or explosive fallout. Castles or other ancient edifices seem to work, since if they’ve survived this long, they should work for you. Probably just ensure they aren’t too significant, or it might put them on the landmark destruction list.

Step 2 –             Create a stockpile and safe room where you and your loved ones can survive.

Remember that old bomb-shelter? Well, maybe it’ll come in handy now. Stock up on canned goods and non-perishables – those will be the next things raided after electronic and high-end stores come the end. Have water, a way to heat things, candles for light, blankets to stay warm and whatever else you’ll need to potentially live underground if that becomes necessary. Also, be sure you can secure yourself and your family in this safe-zone, since who knows what might be out there – potentially zombies, dinosaurs, or just other desperate survivors willing to kill you for what you have.

Step 3 –             Figure out and store methods of transportation.

Gas or electric powered vehicles (unless solar) may not survive the apocalypse, or be able to handle it, especially since stores of gasoline could fall under the destruction of category A, or quickly be hoarded and then used up (the military will probably get first dibs anyway). Therefore, think alternatives: a bicycle and wagon can get you fairly far and let you bring stuff back. A horse might work, if you’re willing to live with and feed him … I don’t want to think that you could also eat him, but I suppose if things got really bad … moving on.

Step 4 –             Become old-fashioned.

Think the early nineteenth century, pre-electricity. You know that cell phone and all the other electronic gadgets you depend on now? Probably not going to help you survive come the end of the world. An old cast-iron stove – and knowing how to use it – along with an ax, basic hand-tools, things that don’t require a battery and do require a bit more effort, these could be your salvation; see, you do have a reason to keep that rusty old rake!

Step 5 –             Learn to defend yourself and your family.

This becomes especially significant in the case of zombies (or maybe just the more mundane desperate survivors who want to steal what you have).

Step 6 –             Start hoarding books.

Food, obviously, gets top priority, as with other survival materials. But, books can be useful. Having books on a wide variety of subjects will help when it comes to rebuilding the world (who will really remember the minutiae of tax law otherwise?). They can also keep you sane by giving you something to do if you’re stuck underground, and if you’re cold and desperate, they’ll serve as suitable fire-starters (Note: only real, physical books will be able to help you with these items, so see, they do have a reason to survive).

Step 7 –             Learn to garden. Start saving and protecting your seeds now.

By the time the end of the world comes, I hope I’m better at gardening (higher survival rates of my poor plants). But, when there’s no grocery store to run to, what better way to get fresh food and replenish your supplies than picking them out of your own garden. I suppose it will depend on what the soils like if you need to learn how to garden inside your survival cave, so what you save is up to you, but seeds are a must. Tomato seeds in particular last a very long time, and after the end of the world everyone will probably need some flowers to cheer things up, don’t you think?

Step 8 –             Learn at least basic first-aid.

It’s hard to say who or what will survive. But, if you and your family are on your own, you need to take care of yourself. No med-clinic? Having a rather-more-than-basic first-aid kit could literally save the day. Maybe have a good stock of basic medicines, and potentially learn about herbal medicine to replenish in a new world devoid of drug companies.

Step 9 –             Have hope and plans for the future, and be prepared to change but maintain them.

It doesn’t matter where you find your hope – in a higher being, in a determination to provide your children a future – you just need to have it. Create a safe haven, but if it becomes unsafe (ie: you’re on low ground and flooding is an issue) than move. Head for the east-coast, west-coast, build a boat and start collecting animals, whatever it takes to keep going, to keep having hope for a future, hold onto it and make it happen.

Step 10 –          Never forget what makes you human.

From a cynical perspective, these could be the very things that brought about the end of the world, but thinking more positively, if humanity is to survive, it may well depend on the better sides of our nature: altruism, empathy, generosity. If we forget the good parts of what makes us human and continue only in a every-man-for-himself attitude, humanity is doomed (and potentially rightfully so).

Okay, so you’re set – see you at the end, since you’re a survivor, right? Have I forgotten anything? Please, let me know about your survival plans, and what I might have forgotten.

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