In the early 60s the world was in turmoil. With a new, young President Kennedy facing the Russians and their nuclear missiles on our doorstep, we were afraid. Even as a little kid, I saw the look of fear on the faces of the grownups. It seemed that we were doomed to die in a fireball or the ensuing fallout and radioactive societal collapse. MAD or “Mutually Assured Destruction” doomed us and saved us too.
We had fallout shelters, civil defense supplies, and nuclear attack drills. These were all supposed to give us peace of mind and protect us from having our faces melted off by “the bomb.” As long as we trusted our leaders, observed the warnings, and didn’t eat radiated snow, we’d be fine.
We lived with this clear and present danger for decades. Sometime in the late 80s when I wasn’t looking, the wall came down all at once. One day we were ready to obliterate the great satanic Russia, and the next day we were selling them blue jeans and importing Russian first ladies.
So we’re currently engaged in unconventional war everywhere. Although we haven’t really felt completely safe, the nuclear threat hasn’t been in the forefront.
We haven’t worried about nukes in a long time, until now. North Korea is working hard so they can blow us to oblivion, but we all know that. The probability that the third-world communists can pull it off is up in the air. For my part, it is enough that they want to nuke us. I don’t think we’re to the point of screaming in panic, but I think we should be prepared.
I tend to be just a little paranoid, and have a bit of OCD. I’m not scared enough to spend a bunch of money making a bomb shelter, but have made some preparations in case the crazies trying to blow up Topeka overshoot Kansas and hit us. The preparations I prefer to make can’t cost much and can’t require a lot of physical work, like shoveling and hammering. I found a few preparations that fit into those categories. The biggest thing I’ve done is download literature to guide me in case we’re attacked with nuclear missiles. What I picked is free to download. You can get the paper copy, but that’ll cost you about $20 on Amazon. It’s called “Nuclear War Survival Skills” by Cresson H. Kearney. It was assembled using tax dollars, so as good citizens, we’re entitled to access. It only takes up about 6 Megs of space on a drive, but I’d print a few of the more useful pages just in case electronics don’t work when needed.
“Nuclear War Survival Skills” was written in 1979 by an engineer at Oak Ridge. To say it’s thorough is an understatement. If you’ve ever known an engineer, you know how detail-oriented they can be. I’ve heard if you ask an engineer what time it is, they tell you how to make a watch. While it doesn’t contain watch repair, it does have instructions on how to build a simple shelter. It even has detailed steps to make your very own radiation meter out of common household items. After skimming through the book, I decided to layin a few supplies. Nuclear fallout last 2 weeks, so I figure I need supplies for that long. I stored a few gallons of water and some basic foodstuffs. A stock of necessary medications, light sources and a couple of good books can help ride out a nuclear or other disaster.
I know this is a little paranoid, but some people are scary and inspire paranoia. That and the fact that most of the country considers us in the Midwest “deplorables existing in flyover country” suggest we should be prepared to take care of ourselves. Besides, it’s nice to have a hobby. This can be one of mine.