Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Being Nice to People

Many of my friends who have the mentality of being prepared for anything would really resist leaving their homes. If a disaster or emergency forces you to leave your home you're relegated to refuge status. That's not a position that anyone wants to be in. If you have your home stocked to thrive in a disaster scenario it's certainly the most comfortable way to go.

The great downside to this plan is your neighbors probably aren't that prepared and they don't want to leave their house any more than you do. If the electricity is out for the 3rd or 5th or 10th day and you're the only house on the block with lights at night, your neighbors may become jealous. If they lack food and you're bar-b-queing steaks they are probably going to want what you have. History has shown that hungry people tend to do things and act in ways they wouldn't in normal conditions.  They may even begin to act less civil towards their neighbors.

How can a person prepare for a situation like that? Getting to know your neighbors is one way. Talk up the idea of keeping some canned goods on hand in case of a power outage or snow storm. Buy them crank operated flashlights as gifts. Get their kids interested in camping since a lot of camping equipment works double duty as prep items.

Another option is to keep low cost extra supplies on hand. What does a case or ramen cost, $5? The family in the condo next door will be grateful for any food if they have none. The single mother across the street would love to have that crank lantern you have that barely holds a charge anymore. Rather than toss out old item like that keep them in a box for situations like that. You may not have the patience to crank that old lantern every 3 minutes, but to someone with no light it's a totally worth it. You may not be interested in eating a bunch or ramen, but to a man with no food it's a feast.

If the power is out and you are running a generator to keep your food cold or your house warm, offer it to your neighbors to use. Maybe tell them you don't have extra gas, so they'd have to provide their own, but it's a great way to keep people civil by helping to provide first world living conditions. And if you need some expertise or some labor or some goods they'll be more likely to offer it up if you've been helpful.

No comments:

Post a Comment