You just heard about Y2K; you take it seriously. What are you going to do? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

If you are just getting it (GIing) or starting on your preparations, If you are a regular, you've probably already read this in another form or a previous post. Preparing for the worst (or near worst) of Y2K (whatever you imagine it to be) demands intelligent planning and decision- making. In a past post, Arnie Rimmer outlines the basic prep issues: location, water, food, shelter, heat, and sanitation.

THINK THIS THROUGH Focus on these first things. Otherwise, you might be spending good money on secondary or unnecessary preparations. Even if you focus on first things, resources may be such that mistakes can not be afforded in the problem-solving process. The new GI needs general and local expertise in order not to waste money on inappropriate products and services-- we all must keep paying bills! So ask a lot of questions.


Narrowing one's focus to first things is not just good advice. It is great advice for the new GI who has a tight budget! Maintaining this focus may also be hard advice to follow. For example, you drive by the camping store (that you've driven by a thousand times)and you're curious enough to turn around and check the place out (since you know from your copy of the F.E.M.A. disaster preparedness check list that you should consider getting some camping gear).

You pull in, go inside, and start looking around at the four person- 4 season tents, sleeping bags, and other stuff. You see a fantastic four person tent that is on sale at 50% discount (say, it's now selling for $250) and, heck, why shouldn't you get it now! You shouldn't get it now: you need to focus on first things. I almost did this. Big Dog (a regular, here) advised me about not worrying about the things I might not get. His advice was helpful when I decided not to buy the tent.


Ok, so you are a new GI and you are focusing on first things, but you may be focusing too hard on getting the "best in breed" of preps or what may seem to be the best preps. Unless you have the financial position, this also is not a reasonable way to proceed. This kind of focus can also lead you to an early defeat: things can be very expensive and some things may always be way out of your price range.

Do you need the armored Ford Explorer from Kroll O'Gara capable of shielding you from light machine gun fire or grenade blasts? Of course, you don't need it. Do you need the hottest wood stove, the biggest water and residential fuel tanks, canned food that lasts the longest, etc. The answer is most likely, no. If you have money for it, knock yourself out. I don't have money to burn. You may not either.


For example, you decide to bring in a back hoe, drop a 3000 gallon plastic cistern/tank into your backyard, fit the tank with a hand pump, and all for $1,700. But if you only have $1,800 for Y2K preps, this is a bad decision-- regardless of all the funny looks you'll get from your neighbors. Get all bases covered in terms of first things. You may have water to last you a long time, but you don't want to have to relocate to a shelter because there's no heat or food after a week.

How much water, calories, vitamins, and heat is needed for each person are questions that new GI's need to know and calculate-- if they are going to make good preps. Previous posts from Anita, D, Rd, Valkyrie, and W.J. Turner about keeping simple in the preps helped me to further clarify this issue for myself. Some suggest preparing for two weeks and then, enlarging these basic preparations to one month, and so forth according to your decision of how long and how bad it will be.


Another problem to be avoided when preparing for Y2K is panic-buying. It really doesn't matter that the last generator is on the shelf at Hechingers (or wherever) and you can buy it. If you are on a tight budget and don't have a medical reason for that generator, forget it! I think these kinds of mistakes are likely to be made by new GIs who are trying to sort out their apprehensions and plans for preparations at the same time.

When you first GI, there are a lot of emotions going on and this is a bad time to be making decisions. If you can, you might turn your mind from Y2K for a day or two and enjoy life before jumping into these decisions. There is no need to get everything done, today. There is no general panic. Why should you panic? You shouldn't. Not, today. (grin) Don't obsess over Y2K. Time is short, but there is time to prepare.


Sometimes, rumors can panic new GIs who just feel like they need to be doing something now and fast! A few months ago, I was at a web site that said that gold coins of the 1/10th and 1/4 ounce American Eagle and Canadian Maple variety were not going to be available for much longer. Another site had a post saying the same. "Move it or lose it!" the author of that post exclaimed. The post made me somewhat nervous.

I called around and there wasn't any shortage of supply. But you know, those web sites and posts are still online. I can only imagine that some people are feeling pretty bad that they won't be able to get their gold coins. Of course, for me, gold coins are still not a real option at this point. In fact, I can't find silver coins at a decent price in small quantities. That's ok. There is still time to prepare.


As Sysman once noted, this forum has really made an effort to maintain a quality of information standard... and that really helps people when dealing with rumors that can cause panic and leave one with a sense of defeat. New and old GIs communicating more and more publicly about the realities of actual potential Y2K problems, availabilities shortages of goods, delivery delays (nationally and locally), and reputation of the dealers is a valuable aspect of this forum.

If you're in a less than positive financial situation, you really can't afford to make a lot of mistakes in your preparations... much less the mistakes of the trial and error variety. The insight of those who have done prepping (or those who are prepping) can really help newbies from avoiding trial and error mistakes. Some feel like they are beating a dead horse when ideas are repeated. Most are helpful.

Obviously, local insight on stores and prices is important. Mary Howe pointed out to me in a past post. Whether you are near or far from the person who has some ideas for you, this is the "edge" that you need to prepare for the potential troubles ahead... and an "edge" that you need to get these preps done in the time remaining. You may not have ever thought of it this way. You may never have imagined that you might actually be needing the wisdom and insight of a stranger.


Don't be shy. Don't hang back in lurk mode if you have questions. If you can, go to one of the get togethers of Yourdonites-- if it's not too far from you. If you think your question is silly or stupid, just ask your question and let the regulars decide if it is really silly or not. If you like, email me or another regular who uses a real email address. Also: refer often to the Preparation Archives that Brian did.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna


GI: This is a person who "gets it." They understand that the potential problems posed by the Y2K computer problem are serious. A GI believes that it is going to be more than just a "bump in the road," but what they personally predict about what will happen varies.

DGI: This is a person who "doesn't get it." They understand something about the Y2K computer problem, but they believe that the greatest threats will come not from computer/computer-chip failures, but panic. A DGI may think it is going to a small or big "bump in the road" depending on public reaction.

DWGI: This is a person who "doesn't want to get it." They have heard about the potential Y2K computer problems and are unwilling (or unable) to take personal action (except, perhaps, if there is panic) to protect themselves and their loved ones from possible Y2K threats.

-- Stan Faryna (, May 23, 1999


Good post, Stan. Would you repost when it disappears below the bottom of the screen so Newbies can find it easily?

This response will kick it over to the New Answers page!

-- Old Git (, May 23, 1999.

Year 2000 Preparation Archive

Choose the category you are interested in and press Enter. The link will appear in a new page. Close window to return.

Category < / td>

-- Stan Faryna (, May 23, 1999.

Excellent advice, and back to the top.

-- Doug (, May 24, 1999.

Old Git,

Right. I'll also try to improve it with each reposting.

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 24, 1999.

I remember quite well how last year I bungled into the stores not knowing how much things SHOULD cost, throwing things into my cart that I thought I might need. I've stored all my purchases on a database where I can observe at a glance how stupid I was then and how I got better prices later, elsewhere. I included price and date fields to observe when price-gouging occurred. LOL. Well, the only one who gouged me was MYSELF.

For newbies starting a cache, I would suggest that they throw an extra can of whatever they eat that's on sale into their cart each trip to the store (if their income allows.) Expiration dates on things like pancake mix (just add water) and macaroni n'cheese are now available that extend way beyond 01/01/2000. Dates on dried milk, juices, etc. are ALSO available and Campbell soups have ALWAYS done a good job of clearly marking their dates.

I'd post information on how to read those encrypted fruit and vegetable expiration dates, but by now they're all good for 2 years. Sales on bottled drinking water are STILL hard for me to pass up at .50/gallon. Just don't STACK them, or they'll dent and leak.

Toilet paper is STILL on sale...pick up extra each time you need some. 13-gallon plastic bags are $1.33 (not on sale) and you can use them to line your toilets. If you're accustomed to an ice-maker, you can pick up 3-packs of ice-trays for $.88 each. Those of you in cooler climates can make ice by filling them with water, putting them outside and throwing them into a cooler to chill your milk, etc.

I guess what I'm saying is START SMALL, yet keep at it. It's amazing what you can amass simply by watching sales and purchasing a little extra each time.


-- Anita Spooner (, May 24, 1999.

"Don't be shy. Don't hang back in lurk mode if you have questions."

I can't emphasize this enough. The majority of people on this forum are ready, willing and able to help. The resources here are truly amazing.

And just my opinion, but the place to be here is the "new answers" page. This is where you can watch the current "hot topic" threads. Hit your browser's "refresh" button often. I spend the majority of my time there, with an occasional check of the main page. <:)=

-- Sysman (, May 24, 1999.

You might wonder how you can get to the New Answers Page. It's at the top of the page. It is very useful for tracking discussions on your favorite threads.

Ask a Question | Unanswered Questions | New Answers | About | Publisher ]

Sincerely, Stan Faryna

-- Stan Faryna (, May 24, 1999.

Top of the main page! (smile)

-- Stan Faryna (, May 24, 1999.

Movin' on up to the Eastside. To a deluxe appt. in the sky.

-- George Jefferson (, May 24, 1999.


-- top (, May 25, 1999.


Anita- GREAT!! Can't believe that I can still learn easy things like this after 18 mos. of intense research and preps.


To the tippy-top.

-- (, May 26, 1999.

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