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  #21  
Old 08 October 2018, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by overyonder View Post
... I've always scratched my head at my people that are totally unprepared when a heavy storm passes through...
I think it depends on where you live. I've lived in my house for 30 years now and only twice have I lost power for more than an hour or two. In the first case, I was without power for 48 hours, along with 45 million other people. I just naturally have enough supplies for a few days in the house. In the other case, we lost power for five days due to an ice-storm. It was December and my house became unlivable almost immediately so having supplies was not an issue.

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Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
...Trust me, way too many of them are praying for a breakdown in society so they can use their guns (and many other weapons) on the people who would take their stuff. (Don't know how successful that would be of course, but they are planning for it with way too much enthusiasm.)...
The big issue is knowing when the rules of society change. If you jump too early, you end up in a whole lot of trouble, if you figure it out too late, someone else could be eating your lunch.
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  #22  
Old 08 October 2018, 05:42 PM
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Makes you wonder why we bothered; though my personal theory is that we wanted to be able to stay put, because we didn't like having to leave Grandma behind when she couldn't walk well any longer.)
Beer.

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Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
The big issue is knowing when the rules of society change. If you jump too early, you end up in a whole lot of trouble, if you figure it out too late, someone else could be eating your lunch.
If gyou go with a reactive model, gyou should be okay either way. IOW, don't go out and start shooting people, but you are allowed to use justified self-defense.

Also:

Young River: We got outflanked by the Independent squad, and we're never gonna make it back to our platoon. [pauses] We need to resort to cannibalism.
Young Simon: That was fast. Don't we have rations or anything?
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  #23  
Old 08 October 2018, 06:08 PM
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I guess I haven't bothered to prepare for a disaster because I've never lost power even long enough for the food to go bad. The handful of power outages I experienced growing up weren't even related to weather, just issues with the power lines that were soon resolved. My dad and I used to play our guitars by flashlight until the power came back. We were required to bring "earthquake kits" on the first day of school-- just a gallon ziploc bag of extra food that wouldn't spoil-- and it was fun to eat at the end of the year. I lived through several earthquakes; we just never needed the kits.
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  #24  
Old 08 October 2018, 06:10 PM
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TL, there’s a couple decent documentaries that have made their way onto YouTube about the transition from hunter-gatherer to hunter-gather with a few choice fields of really tasty grass, to "hey this grass is so good, and it turns out we can make it last all year, so let's just hang out here, but still hunt," to full-on farming with irrigation and ultimately "civilization."

The gist, as I recall, was that in three weeks a band of nomads could gather enough of that "really tasty grass" (by which I mean the precursor to wheat) to feed them all for a year. With a food source like that, it’s only natural that they would start gravitating towards the sedentary, particularly as the tools to process and the structures to store the grain became more advanced, along with other activities they might choose to take up in their down time (like art, textiles, monumental architecture, etc).

Also, you can support a larger population on irrigated/developed farmland (with grains that have to be planted by hand, by tilling, or otherwise tended to by humans because they’re too heavy after centuries or millennia of selective breeding to be spread by wind) than you can off wild-growing grains. Once you get to that point, there’s no going back without a massive loss of life.

ETA: I should also note that the "tasty grass" model applies specifically to the fertile crescent. Civilization is believed to have arisen independently (rather than by contact) in multiple parts of the world over thousands of years, most recently in south and mesoamerica based off different staple crops and conditions.

Last edited by ASL; 08 October 2018 at 06:21 PM.
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  #25  
Old 08 October 2018, 06:14 PM
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And the stead food source and lack of need to travel long distances throughout the year meant that their group could have a higher population than the still-nomadic hunter gatherer groups, which gave an advantage during inter-group conflict.
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  #26  
Old 08 October 2018, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by ASL View Post
other activities they might choose to take up in their down time (like textiles).
Textiles are not arts that require a sedentary life to develop. Animal fibers can travel with you, as can the tools to card, spin, dye, weave and sew. The evidence that hunter-gatherers used looms exists, IIRC, as loom weights have been found. What happened when gatherers turned into farmers is that plant fibers became possible (nettle, linen, cotton) as well.

Seaboe

Last edited by Seaboe Muffinchucker; 08 October 2018 at 08:04 PM.
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  #27  
Old 08 October 2018, 07:55 PM
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Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
You don't actually have to milk the cows at four thirty in the morning. You can milk them at 10 AM and 10 PM if you like; I know somebody who does exactly that. The problem isn't the time of day, but the schedule -- a dairy cow must be milked on schedule, or she'll be in pain, and quite possibly get mastitis.

And there are plenty of people who have to get up at four thirty in the morning to get to non-farming jobs. Some of them have to spend an hour or two each way in traffic, and/or waiting for multiple buses, getting back and forth. I don't call them fools, though I'm sorry they're stuck with it. But if I had to get up early every morning, I'd rather spend the next couple hours in the barn -- especially if it's my own barn -- than driving in traffic or in the subways. YMMV.

It's a line from Weird Al's Amish Paradise.

DH and I just recently discussed what g-you would need should the world end. An academic discussion of course. He listed three things: cigarettes; water and ammo. All of those can be used as currency.
As far as The Atlantic article goes, it sounds more like a Hey look y'all! I'm a farmer!
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  #28  
Old 08 October 2018, 07:55 PM
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Re: Seaboe - Sure, and neither does art or monumental architecture (some of the oldest sites with man-built stone structures appear to have been unoccupied or only seasonally occupied). What I was going for was that being settled allowed for more specialization and bulkier tools/kits, a nice gown to wear to burials instead of just the everyday walking around clothes (okay, that probably also predates settlement, but the point is more and bulkier would be allowed), and so forth.

ETA: If you’ve never heard of the site at Göbekli Tepe, in Turkey, this is worth a glance: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Göbekli_Tepe

Last edited by ASL; 08 October 2018 at 08:01 PM.
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  #29  
Old 09 October 2018, 12:08 AM
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When I was kid, I was so sure I'd live off the land, I must have read the Foxfire books front to back three times and once back to front for good measure. Never expected to become a city dweller.
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  #30  
Old 09 October 2018, 02:11 AM
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In 2014, a fellow blogger recruited her to sell essential oils for doTerra, a multilevel marketing company whose logo is plastered across homesteading sites. Within a year, her business was so profitable that Stuart quit his job; Elliott now makes $500,000 a year selling to fellow “oilers.” Her blog, which helps her recruit customers and salespeople, is heavy on suggestions for using oils. In one 10-day period on Instagram, she demonstrated how geranium oil could heal a duck’s infected foot, how lemongrass could repel pests, and how Roman chamomile and rosemary had cured her son’s hives.
Yeah...totally dependent on the land my foot!
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  #31  
Old 09 October 2018, 02:33 AM
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Good old multi-level marketing, which is totally not a pyramid scheme despite looking almost exactly like it.

That reminds me: when I went to get a haircut today, I noticed that the place is now selling tea tree oil as an add-on to a haircut and shampoo.
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  #32  
Old 09 October 2018, 03:18 AM
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There's at least a scintilla of evidence that tea tree oil may help with dandruff, and it does feel really nice and cool on the scalp. I have no issue with salons offering it if they're not making unsubstantiated and dangerous claims about it (e.g. that you don't need to see a doctor for an infection or possible allergic reaction, or that you can deter potentially West Nile carrying mosquitoes with essential oils.)
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  #33  
Old 09 October 2018, 04:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
I think it depends on where you live. I've lived in my house for 30 years now and only twice have I lost power for more than an hour or two.
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Originally Posted by Esprise Me View Post
I guess I haven't bothered to prepare for a disaster because I've never lost power even long enough for the food to go bad.
I don't think that most of those people in and around Rochester, NY who found themselves without power for weeks had ever lost power for more than a few hours before, either.

A bad ice storm can hit anywhere the temperatures drop below freezing. And you're not going to get much of any advance warning, because such a storm is dependent on temperatures being in a narrow range both in the atmosphere and at ground level.

Tornados can hit nearly anywhere, including places ice storms can't. Again while weather conducive to tornadoes can be predicted the exact occurence, strength, and path can't. While if a bad one comes directly over your house any preparation other than a heavy-duty storm cellar will be rendered useless, a bad tornado that leaves your house just fine but takes out large chunks of your area's electric infrastructure could most certainly make you wish you'd done some preparation.

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Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
Beer[/url].
Yes, I've run into that theory. Also makes sense to me.

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Originally Posted by ASL View Post
TL, there’s a couple decent documentaries that have made their way onto YouTube about the transition from hunter-gatherer to hunter-gather with a few choice fields of really tasty grass, to "hey this grass is so good, and it turns out we can make it last all year, so let's just hang out here, but still hunt," to full-on farming with irrigation and ultimately "civilization."
I suspect it was actually (like many things) a combination of factors. 'Hey, we figured out how to store some of these grass seeds and there sure are a lot of them here. And Grandma's having a lot of trouble walking. Why don't some of us just stay here for a while? and while we're at it I want to see whether we can get some of that fruit or grain to ferment on purpose, that was fun when we found that fermented stuff last year -- '

In a few places where the hunting/gathering was really good, people pulled off staying put without agriculture, for a while. There were populations along the Pacific Northwest coast that managed with what they could pull from the ocean. But the territories that were rich enough to do that got taken over by the farming peoples, eventually.

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Also, you can support a larger population on irrigated/developed farmland [ . . . ] Once you get to that point, there’s no going back without a massive loss of life.
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Originally Posted by crocoduck_hunter View Post
And the stead food source and lack of need to travel long distances throughout the year meant that their group could have a higher population than the still-nomadic hunter gatherer groups, which gave an advantage during inter-group conflict.
Yup. Staying put lets you have a lot more people -- possibly also because you don't have to carry the babies as far, so it's easier to raise more of them. And then you're stuck. As we certainly are right now; because there's no way to support anywhere near the current population as hunter-gatherers.

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Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
It's a line from Weird Al's Amish Paradise.
Ah. Thanks for explanation.

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Originally Posted by DawnStorm View Post
DH and I just recently discussed what g-you would need should the world end. An academic discussion of course. He listed three things: cigarettes; water and ammo. All of those can be used as currency.
I should be sitting pretty with my hand pump well, then!

-- I actually doubt water would work well as currency. It's heavy and bulky to haul around, and in some places there's plenty of it. Water filters might be a better bet -- especially as if this society did collapse there'd be a lot of additional pollution for a while as various containment and treatment sites quit working.
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  #34  
Old 09 October 2018, 06:50 AM
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In the Old World people became sedentary first, then domesticated crops. Not so in the New World, where corn (Zea mays) was domesticated then people settled down.
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  #35  
Old 09 October 2018, 12:38 PM
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Gotta throw this in: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lOfZLb33uCg
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  #36  
Old 09 October 2018, 03:06 PM
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Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
I don't think that most of those people in and around Rochester, NY who found themselves without power for weeks had ever lost power for more than a few hours before, either.

A bad ice storm can hit anywhere the temperatures drop below freezing. And you're not going to get much of any advance warning, because such a storm is dependent on temperatures being in a narrow range both in the atmosphere and at ground level.

Tornados can hit nearly anywhere, including places ice storms can't. Again while weather conducive to tornadoes can be predicted the exact occurence, strength, and path can't. While if a bad one comes directly over your house any preparation other than a heavy-duty storm cellar will be rendered useless, a bad tornado that leaves your house just fine but takes out large chunks of your area's electric infrastructure could most certainly make you wish you'd done some preparation...
I have an emergency water supply that's good for several days. Anything beyond that and I'd need to leave the house anyway. I also always have enough food in the house to last me more than a week. If I had to shelter in place for much more than a week, I'd have to get creative, but I could make it work. I have hundreds of gallons of water in the swimming pool year round and equipment to make it potable as needed.

The next step in preparations would require a generator, which is expensive and would require maintenance and a fresh fuel supply to ensure it would work when needed. When we had the ice storm, I learned two things about generators; They require a lot of fuel which necessitates frequent trips to the gas station. Second, when left unattended they can and do disappear real quickly.
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  #37  
Old 09 October 2018, 04:00 PM
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DawnStorm, if he didn't make fun of everybody else also, I would find that rather annoying. As it is I'll just say I don't think it's one of his best.

-- Weird Al may know and be doing it deliberately, but some on this thread may not: the word "plain" would have an entirely different connotation. Amish, Mennonites, and some other groups collectively call themselves the Plain People.

Beachlife!, that sounds like an entirely reasonable type of preparation to me, in the sort of situation that I expect you're in (at least, assuming you've also got some light and communication sources that will work for a while in an outage.) Hand pumps and wood stoves aren't something everybody can go in for -- that part really does depend on where you live.

I was at one point intending to pick up a generator during the yard sales of the year 2000, as in late 1999 the hardware stores were all putting up signs saying that no you couldn't just return your generator when Y2K dawned with the power still on; but apparently almost everybody who decided to buy one anyway then decided to keep it, as the flood of yard sale generators I was expecting never materialized. I still don't have one; which means that a long power outage in hot weather would be a problem for me, though not a life-endangering one, because of all that stuff in the freezers. Everything else I've got a backup method for, and in cold weather the freezers would be OK too for quite a long stretch because they're in an unheated back hall.

(Fuel for a generator would be less of an issue for me, because I've got an on-farm gas tank for the tractors, anyway. But if you've got little or no other use for the fuel, you're right that having to keep rotating it out in order to have fresh for a generator would be a significant problem.)
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  #38  
Old 09 October 2018, 04:31 PM
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But if you've got little or no other use for the fuel, you're right that having to keep rotating it out in order to have fresh for a generator
When I bought my house, there were two 55 gallon barrels on stands in the back yard. I was told they contained fuel oil. A family friend pumped one out, but said the second appear to be contaminated--at any rate, he couldn't use it for fuel oil.

So it sat there in my back yard for 10 years or so until I had my other (empty) fuel tank removed, at which point I found out it was full of unleaded gasoline. If I'd known that, I'd've gotten rid of it a heck of a lot faster than I did.

Seattle had a really bad ice storm back in 2006. I was fine, didn't lose power for even five minutes, but some people had no power for over a week. Sadly, people died from using charcoal to try and get some heat. The papers (there were still papers then) plastered warnings all over the front pages, in all sorts of languages (leading some asshat to complain about furriners who didn't speak God's English). Fourteen people died in all.

Seaboe
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  #39  
Old 09 October 2018, 05:20 PM
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I was never the sort of historical reenactor to cook over a fire for two weeks but I like to think some of my archaic skills would help out in a longer term slow burn diaster. The equipment and know-how to brew and vint should serve us well but I hope our fellow survivors can put up with wild yeast.

OTOH my refrigerator is sitting open, empty, and unplugged in anticipation of the repair guy's arrival. My kids are so lost without the fridge.
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  #40  
Old 09 October 2018, 05:25 PM
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It's a really good thing your friend didn't try to use it for fuel oil!


-- ETA: yes, Aud 1, I suspect you'd be quite popular After the End.
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