I thought it was going to be bad but why so many people prepared so much???greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
I came in this forum by chance in dec 1999 ,when thinghs were already over .I believe that many people have been here for a long time (2-3 years).I red that many people changed area were they were, went to live in others parts of the country.Others spent some amount of money to prepare. I was scared too,I believed in a short time that we were going to go back around 20 years in development of computers and society. I red articles and essay of North and all the others. I prepared myself and my family to not having elettricity for sometime,to have scarcity for some other time.But I did not go all the way to go back to Italy or some other country Now I ask you ,maybe is the Latin way of life(I consider being Italian to be the essence of Latin which means Latium the aerea of Rome) Maybe because I do not live in a 100% american state ((Prico)which by the way Is a commovealth of USA) I do not know.As I said because of this although I believed in a catastrophe,I did not prepared like many of you. Why is it that you did it?You changed your work?You spent thousands of $ etc etc. Is just curiosity,to undetstand the human nature please DO NOT TAKE AS AN INSULT or something BAD Thank You for your time
-- Alex The Italian (email@example.com), January 09, 2000
PS: Maybe is that many do not want to live the way of suprlus we live today.I do not know,all right I have been provocative,but that's how we understand better.
-- Alex The Italian (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
I dropped out 30 years ago. I live in a
solar electric home. I use hand tools
whenever I can. My Y2K preps consisted of
buying some extra food stores and getting
my propane delivered early. I have not
spent any money that has been wasted. This
is the message that I told all who would
listen. I have chosen this way of living
for the long term. Self-sufficiency is an
empowering lifestyle. Those that took the
road to self-sufficiency will be better for
-- spider (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
Guess a lot of people went overboard. We went 'back to the earth' as much as we could. Nice garden, going into it's 4th year. We've been canning a lot and have cut our monthly food bills by about 55%. We also installed a wood stove for heat, something we have wanted for a long time, prepping was just the motivation, again, power bill down about 45%. Also, eliminated a lot of miscellaneous crap from our lives, the whole family is closer as a result. Granted, out pantry is over flowing, but that's OK too. All in all, we managed to reduce our monthly cash flow by almost 50% and are happier. What we did spend explicitly on 'prepping' will quickly come back and nothing will be wasted....
-- BH (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
And as far as relocating, we have enjoyed the changes in our lives so much, we will likely relocate from surburbia sometime this year, just so we can continue additional life style changes along the lines of the past couple of years.
-- BH (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
alex...The potential for disruption caused by Y2K was the motivation for us to move from Portland OR to a country town in CA to be closer to our grown children's families. My husband wasn't yet back to work after a prolonged layoff, and our children were requesting that we move here to join in the prep effort. It has been a scaling down of lifestyle in some ways, but family closeness has risen greatly. We've always been close in heart, but now we live 100' behind 5 of our grandchildren and can be active in their daily lives. CA wasn't our area of choice other than for family....gun control, higher unemployment, arid land....we miss the beauty of the NW, but not the city lifestyle. We spent more than we needed to in preparation, but it will come in handy sometime and we do not measure the cost. We don't eat out (I adore cooking), we went to the movies twice last year (don't think we missed much), don't smoke or drink....all things that others don't think twice about spending money on for momentary pleasure. We derive our pleasure from each other, our friends and family. I hear people criticizing the outlay of money for Y2K, but I'll bet that we didn't spend anymore on preps than many spent on entertainment and things to tickle their fancies. Our indulgent lifestyle has blinded us to the more important values in life.
-- Kenin Marble (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
--I know we seriously uppe our preparations, the primary one being moving to a rural location from an urban one that was getting worse and worse. the scourge of crasck cocaine had infested our neighborhood foe the last couplke of years, and eas totally out of hand, so last spring we just left, even though I hadn't been working very much due to an arm injury, and we had little money. We're a lot better now. The amount of "crime" here is neglibile, compared to where we were, the air is cleaner, costs for goods and services is roughly the same, driving distances are farther, that's the major difference.
Also, this is a total guess, I think you'll find that a lot of folks who really prepared seriously have experienced sudden shocks to their lifestyles in their past, whether it was a job loss, or maybe a whopper blizzard that left them cut off for a week or two, or a hurricane or whatever. People learn from their mistakes. At least some people do. That's my best guess on extensive preparations, besides individual assessments of the stakes of not preparing, if we had experienced a major infrastructure loss the past week. The odds were too great to ignore for most people, based on what little real evidence the average person has access to. Almost all of us only had little inklings of the big picture, even the computer "experts" had different scenarios and probabilities. For us, it was simple, go to a better, more self sufficient lifestyle, one where we could be safer and happier. It was an easy decision to make.
-- zog (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
Alex, very FEW people prepared for y2k at all, & very VERY few people made any kind of drastic changes in their lives. I don't know how many people re-located, but I'd guess it's a very small number, maybe a few hundred (out of 275 million!).
I think the small number who did make drastic changes were probably planning to do that anyway, & that y2k simply compelled them to do it sooner rather than later.
As for me, I mostly did a lot of food shopping & storing items that we'll be needing anyway. The only "drastic" thing I did was to buy & install a wood-burning stove in our fireplace. If that turns out to be unnecessary, I'll be more than grateful.
-- hope this (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
In the late 70s when it looked as if Carter was either going to roll over and beg....or bomb the Russians, I was involved in the heirarchy of Civil Defense in the Tampa area as part of my job. The constant flow of data not available to the public and the content of that data flat scared me. So much so, I purchased a farm in the NC mountains and began prepping for a nuclear exchange. Since my job was background in CD and not direct public control, I would not be 'abandoning' the public if I got worried and decided to leave. A few years later, I was seriously injured on the job and disabled out. About the same time, my house taxes went from $700 per year to well over $2500 (in ONE jump). That was the prime motivator. My wife and I moved to our farm within 3 months after that. Shortly after we moved we sold the house, received invitations to enroll in the RN program of the local college (college had never invited anyone before) and realized WE controlled our future for the first time. The preps we had pretty much fed us through the time we were in the nursing program (including the garden, animals, Etc.) That turned out to be the most valuable lesson of all.
We no longer have the farm in NC but have a relatively self-sufficent homestead in SC. When the y2k problem first came to my attention in 1998, we did an inventory on our needs. Except for increasing our stock of canned goods on hand each time we wnet to the grocery, the only real prep was to install a fuel tank, change the heating in the house to propane instead of a heat pump and make arrangements for a large delivery of feed for our animals.
EVERY ONE of these preps has already borne fruit and NONE of the problems were y2k related. We have had a water line rupture....used the backup system for water. We were without power for two days....no problems....used the propane heat and other non-electric backups. Enlarged pantry is great at 2am when you realize you are out of something.
Would I change anything? Did I spend too much???
-- Lobo (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
Because I didn't want to freeze in a cold city and have human waste build up in my apartment and because I didn't want my sister to be the victim of a home invasion by looters in Miami. Now we're in a lovely home on the beach in Vero Beach, Florida. I still have my apartment in New York. I spent too much money and I couldn't afford it all, but am I sorry? No. I would do it again to protect myself and my family! Of course.
-- Mara (MaraWayne@aol.com), January 09, 2000.
I had always wanted a self-sufficient lifestyle and have been close several times in my life. Five years ago we moved from Phoenix to rural IA and 3 yrs ago bought a farm, which was the dream we had. After realizing that Y2k might be a serious problem over 2 years ago, we stepped up our plans. What was a 5-yr plan became a 2 yr plan and we came close. Close enough that had Y2k been catastrophic, we would have been just fine. Now that we are reasonably sure that it won't be catastrophic, we are continuing on with our plans to become as self-sufficient as possible.
Having all of those preps has already had its blessings. Last summer I was unexpectedly out of work for 3 mos and it would have hurt a lot more without the preps we had. Once I went back to work, we re-stocked plus some for the end of the year. Right now we will use the preps, but still keeping a few months worth at all times and that will help us this next year trying to pay off the farm and build the farming part of our lives to be able to make some money off of it.
Eventually we still want to put in solar /wind generation for electric and dig a new well and get off of rural water. The woodstove works great at heating most of the house and we really like it. I also have a woodburning cookstove that we didn't get installed that we will install for the other end of the house.
Did we spend too much money - maybe. I like to think of it as a different kind of savings plan. Nothing we bought will go to waste as we bought only what we would use. Since prices will go up in the future, I have saved money by buying at yesterday's prices.
As soon as the farm is paid off and I can make some income from it, I will quit my job. Thank goodness.
-- beckie (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
My family and I spent about $500, mainly on canned foods from the grocery store and for winterizing our house (upgrade the plumbing on our 97 year old house).
Personally, I'm glad for the opportunity to learn about becoming more self-sufficient and becoming less hand-to-mouth in my daily living. My goal is to become debt-free (bane to today's society, I know - "How will the debt collectors earn a living?" Evil grin...) and to own my own land, beholden to no-one. I didn't realize how dependent I was upon so many other individuals, and how fragile that chain really was.
I think that these self-sufficiency skills are critical to our society's resiliance, so that if there were a serious terrorist threat (God forbid), and our infrastructure was threatened, we would be able to deal with the situation more easily. I see too many threats to our society with its current complacency and the lack of ability of many to grow their own food.
-- Deb M. (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
Alex, the US is a big country with relatively low population density. Outside the cities there are villages, but not in the sense that you see in Europe. I lived in a town of 5000 that you couldn't really see from the air, because the houses were so spread out in wooded country. Where I live now, I can see my neighbor's houses only when the leaves are down.
The result of neighbors spaced apart means privacy to do things that others would ridicule. (Buying a generator and trying it out.) Having lived in Europe for half of my life, I would say that observation of what others do and what becomes "socially acceptable" is MUCH more active there than here. Life is less regulated here.
I still think that it would be the same if people lived as close together here and there. It maybe most expressed where the population density is really high.
People in the cities had very little opportunity to prepare themselves for infrastructure failures. This is why *SOME* (not many) moved to the countryside.
In regard to previous anwers, the percentage of people who prepared in a meaningful way is SMALL, yes. The reason your read so much about it now, is because our newspapers are lazy outfits that reprint wire service news, and when they do something original, they write about something popular. (There are sports pages VERY day.)
What you read on this forum is by those who are computer literate and often very convinced of their personal views. There are lately also lots of others who hold no beliefs whatsoever and are just here for their own entertainment. You find them on any forum. There are some who have an agenda of "spinning" (that is to give everything a meaning that THEY want.) Then there are some who provide just information. There is some "kidding around" going on, that you will not understand. Wonderful crossection, sometimes international. And you should notice that no one has objected to your english, which is a sign of tolerance and appreciation for those who contribute from countries outside of the U.S.
Enjoy and sort. W.
-- W (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 09, 2000.
to all: Thank you all for the anserwers,it made me understand better of why people prepared,yes I guess USA is much different from Europe,you have the chance of spacing out ,of deciding to go living in a place far away from the cities,in the country.I guess most of you did not prepare all for the reason of Y2K,you did it because you were going to do it anyway and because in the USA is much easier to moove than in Europe,to W which is the person before this posting,yes I met here in the forum people rude and against my background ,you can see it in the this url: http://hv.greenspun.com/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=002GZu
Also I forget that here during the 50's and 60'and Carter and JFK there was a scare of Atomic attack much higher than in Europe,I mean also peole historically has not lived a war ,an invasion. Also I think that USa has been a difficult country to conquer and that people are more used at changing and poreparing because here is more difficult to live than in Europe (Hurricanes,Tornadoes,Hearthquakes) Anyway thank you again to have xplained so well the problem
-- Alex The Italian (email@example.com), January 09, 2000.
Alex.....I think most of the contributors, so far, have done far more than the average prepper.(I admire them for what they've done.) But f people who prepared for Y2K are in the vast minority, and those of us who did prepare are in various stages of preparation, from a few extra cans of food and a little extra water and candles to moving out to secluded places to get away from the cities.
For myself, I found Y2K to be fascinating, and after much research, I felt it was prudent to do what I could, within reason....I probably prepared for an 8 on the scale of 1-10. Wanted to make sure there would be enough food and means to cook it (I didn't get a wood burning stove- not practical, where I live, but got different alternative ways to cook, both for indoors and out.) Made sure I had a couple of different ways to do laundry. Bought extra warm clothes. A grain mill to grind wheat. Aladdin lamps for light. A kerosene heater.
Altho these are all expenses I wouldn't have gone to, had there not been the serious concern about power outage, most items, if not all, will be useful, regardless. I have had much peace of mind in knowing I have all bases covered. And I am ready, God forbid, if some other emergency arises. That seems to be the consensus of most of us preppers, tho there are a few who resent the fact they went to the trouble and expense. (I spent a lot of time in planning and acquiring my preps, but I'm thankful for the time and the preps!) I plan to hold on to them, just in case! Like Karen Anderson said, "just in case" might come later, rather than sooner!"
-- Jo Ann (MaJo@Michiana.com), January 09, 2000.
Alex - I looked outside one morning and saw a lot of storm clouds. The radio predicted a 100% chance of rain. I went out and bought an umbrella. It didn't rain that day, (but it still might later this month). I still have my umbrella and don't feel foolish or like the money was wasted. Sometimes clouds mean rain, sometimes they don't. I have come to the realization that it is prudent to have an umbrella.
-- REvans (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 10, 2000.