I took a day to just sit around this week and it happened to be the day that the Discovery Channel ran all of its 2012 programs. Speculation on 2012 being the end of the world provides great food for thought. What if it wasn’t as simple as a huge meteorite reducing our big blue marble to a dead entity. What if the end of the world was just the end of the world as we know it? Who would survive the initial days and who would make it for the long term? It really is hard to know. Somebody who seems tough in their current life may be unable to adapt when the bottom falls out. Then again, the mild mannered pizza guy might become a great leader of men. It’s a toss up.
After giving this way more thought than I should, I’ve reduced chances of survival to four factors:
Luck, skills, supplies and nerve.
We can look seem by preparing for contingencies and reacting well when they happen but I’m talking about “I can’t believe it!” Luck. The kind of lucky you are when your car breaks down and you don’t make it to work in the Twin Towers on September eleventh. There’s no preparing for that.
We become tribal when society breaks down and each tribe will need specialists for security, hunting and foraging, medicine, mechanics and engineering, construction and other specialties. It isn’t so important that you have one of these specialties but being able to find them and negotiate with them will be.
Will you have the initial supplies you’ll need to get you through the initial panic and breakdown of civilization? Medical and first aid supplies and a basic knowledge of how to use them will be important since one small, untreated wound can take you down without proper medical care.
Hygiene is another important factor. Brushing your teeth might make your Mountain Dew taste funny, but staying clean will stave off disease. Few people realize how important basic hygiene items will be. Consider some of the necessities we take for granted like toothpaste, toilet paper, tampons, and deodorant. Imagine the stinking messes we’d be without these.
Most food is refrigerated or frozen and will spoil when the power grid goes down. Will you have enough canned and dry goods to stay healthy? Will you even know how to prepare them? Water will stop running when the power grid fails. Will you have enough fresh water for everyone in your family to stay hydrated? Do you know where you can get fresh water from a natural source?
This is the biggest one. Will you have the nerve to carry on in a post apocalyptic world? Will you have the nerve to set off with your family and make a new life from scratch with your bare hands? Will you have the nerve to kill anyones who threatens your new life? Will you have the nerve to do what needs to be done? Will you have the nerve to look at all the devastation around you, knowing the world and your life in it will never be the same, and still believe you have a future?