Today I share another interview and book giveaway in the Backdoor Survival Summer Book Festival. George Ure is back again this week for an encore interview and shares his answers to some new questions.
Now here is the deal. The book he originally included in the Summer Book Festival was pulled from publication. I suppose you would say it has been moth-balled. As a conciliation, he has agreed to provide 3 of my readers with a copy of his recently revised e-book, How to Live on $10,000 a Year – Or Less.
Before we begin, I would like to announce the winner of last week’s giveaway.
“Crista” has won a copy of Fight, Flight, or Hide. The Guide to Surviving a Mass Shooting. Congratulations! I have contacted you by email with instructions for claiming your book. Here is how Christa answered the question “What is your favorite “survival” food? (Or what do you THINK will be your favorite survival food?”
My favorite survival food is my regular favorite food – chocolate! I have tried to store it in as many forms as possible, from Tootsie Rolls in the BOB to cocoa powder for baking!
It won’t be so much about survival as it will be psychological welfare. This is an area of prepping that needs to be addressed by all of us!
Be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.
AN ENCORE INTERVIEW WITH GEORGE URE
1. Given your background and knowledge, what do you feel are the three most important survival or prepping skills?
It’s hard to boil down survival and prepping skills to a simple “top 3” or even a top 20. The reason is that the way the events have an unfortunate way of delivering a need for that one damn skill you don’t have.
It’s a lot like going into Lowes when you’re planning to build a house: There’s probably not a tool in there you wouldn’t use if you were really planning a “foundation up” construction project. Even the welding section has items you could use, especially if you are going to tack-weld your reinforcing steel (rebar) before you pour concrete.
So education really has a couple of components to it – and this is whether you’re talking prepping/survival or whether you’re building a house. Of course, it also applies if you’re thinking about putting yourself in hock to buy, and education, too. This is a kind of pet peeve area since jobs are so scarce and student loans can simply bury whole families.
It really comes down to defining what you (Gaye) and I would call in developing software the “Use Case.” This is where programmers and analytical types discuss with the customer exactly what they want to accomplish: What information do they need to see on a screen? How big should that font be? Does the company logo need to be on this screen? When this item is missing, does the system have error trapping and – if yes – how does that work?
Well, designing the perfect set of tools and skills for a yet-to-arrive future is difficult to assess even when everything seems to be going wrong. It’s also why Backdoor Survival and UrbanSurvival and my Peoplenomics websites are so “sympatico.”
Backdoor Survival has tons of useful “how to” articles while Urban Survival, in particular, is kind of like a “hot sheet” or “threat list” that gets updated and I try (OK, sometimes none too perfectly) to put the specific threat into words and also a number of skill sets that would be useful.
For example, if there was a lot of coastal earthquake activity (besides the Pacific Ring of Fire and New Zealand) then the skills would include timing routes to higher elevations above tsunami threats. Absent that, is there a boat handy? If there is a boat handy, is it self-righting, self-bailing, and does it have some water, oars, a sail, and so forth?
On the other hand, off at the other extreme of water, do you know how to build a condensation water supply using plastic which works even in drought struck areas?
Well, that’s the damn curse I walk around with in my head all the time and I’d be pleased to share it, but it doesn’t get the problem out of my head: I still have to read the news, figure out how the threats have shifted overnight, and then think through (as well as one can between 4 AM and 6 AM) how any of these changes will impact my choice of places, supplies, tools, food, water, energy, and so forth.
What you’ll see (if you haven’t dozed off yet) is that you really need (above all else) an appreciation for the threats and then a plan to address each.
Which leaves me one more choice, so I’ll take what’s behind Curtain #3: We’ve got Awareness and Response figured out which means the missing piece must be Balance. Given that something will eventual happen geologically to move coast lines or crumble mountains, you still need to keep your daily balance because so many of these threats could arrive in the next one minute or not for 10,000 years.
That’s where Balance matters so much. A balanced person with no skills would be a wasted human. A skilled and watchful person can flip into the nutter category in a blink, and the watcher who is thoughtful might actually need to do something someday and since the list of possible skills is long, there’s a lot of work ahead, right?
As an author in the survival and/or prepping niche, what are you personally preparing for?
We’ve preparing for “sand in the Vaseline.”
I’ve just spent several hundred dollars buying some rare books for a research project for Peoplenomics.com subscribers which I guess I can let slip out here (since only half the planet will hear about it): I’m working on a new e-book which could be anywhere from a few dozen pages to something really long and involved….you know Tolstoy in length.
Here’s the general idea: As humans have evolved, they have brought “eras” with them. Some of the “eras” which came along – and which were being extensively documented by “those old economists” that were active during the last economic Depression – involved the idea of mechanization as an era. Think of it like their version of “high tech” 100-years ago.
Back then, the places that were not tech included most of today’s third world and so forth. The US (and Germany/Europe) were able to fight their wars pretty much independently. The US had its own energy, thanks to the Rockefellers, for example, while Germany had coal and so on.
So part of what I’m doing is going back and seeing how these people were viewing “progress” of their day. That included a massive public works project, not unlike the massive effort going into CERN these days….the digging of the Panama Canal.
OK, now we fast-forward to the Great Depression and a number of these economists were still in vogue and then they started writing about the Big Change which was going to have to come from the impact of mass manufacturing and the fact that horses and other draft animals became obsolete when the traction motor (which we call the tractor) came along and when cars began to replace horses in a serious way.
Then, like now, there was much hand-wringing and cry-babying about what the future would hold. But in the last Depression, the people who made the most money were those who bought prime land and those who bought stocks when they were pennies on the dollar worth of value.
That’s what I’m planning for: A window when things will be so cheap – from the blood running in the streets (financially speaking) that even an idiot can pick up and make money.
But you need a little bit of dough when we get there, which is why we have pushed so far back from civilization to live on 20 acres of land and to try to “watch quietly” and see what we can figure out. Plus it’s a cheap life when you deliberately “de-consume” a bit and grow some of your own food.
Ultimately I think everyone walks around with a look-up table in their head: If this goes wrong then I will do that. But if this other thing over here goes wrong, then I think I’d react by doing thus-and-so.
It’s really what makes Urban/Peoplenomics and Backdoor such a good fit: We watch the threat board and you focus on how to play things.
Admittedly, I’m all over the place…but the threats change often as heck! And like this was supposed to be a reminder, as I was writing this note to you the power went off here at the ranch. 95-degrees, humid and no power…I ask you, what’s the fun in that? The fun part was Elaine coming over and saying “I see the power’s not off over here…” But the power had gone off in the house…so she was over to get me to call the power company.
A quick spin of the AM radio dial revealed it wasn’t EMP or the end of the world…but yeah, that’s the kind of thing I worry about most: We’ve become a highly electricity dependent society so having a diesel genset and solar power is the area which I’ve concentrated most on and now I’m moving my “big effort” into hydroponics this fall and winter.
Even in the short-term, a lack of water and food can kill, so I want plenty of power for the water well and lots of “reach out and touch” with the ham radio gear. And while we’re doing it, air conditioning would be nice. But the freezer which is on emergency power? Well, don’t want to lose calories unless we have to…
(I assume the power will come back on, but here I am, working…)
THE BOOK GIVEAWAY
Three copies of How to Live on $10,000 a Year – Or Less have been reserved for Backdoor Survival readers. Here is this week’s question – and it is something I have been meaning to ask for quite some time:
What future question would you like to see answered by Backdoor Survival readers in a giveaway promotion?
To enter, respond in the comments area at the end of this article. The deadline is 6:00 AM Pacific next Friday. A winner will be selected at random using tools on the random.org website although please note, that the winners may not be notified until early October. Once the winners are notified, they will have 48 hours to claim their e-book or an alternate winner will be selected.
Note: If you are reading this article in your email client, you must go to the Backdoor Survival website to enter this giveaway in the comments area at the bottom of the article.
THE FINAL WORD
This article concludes the Summer 2013 Backdoor Survival Book Festival. I would like to thank all of the authors and their publishers for participating and of course the readers for their entries and answers to my questions.
Coming up in October in the Fall/Winter Book Festival and once again, I have some fabulous books lined up in both the survival fiction and non-fiction genres. There are a few surprises in store – I just know you will be pleased!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
If you have not done so already, please be sure to like Backdoor Survival on Facebook to be updated every time there is an awesome new article, news byte, or free survival, prepping or homesteading book on Amazon.
Bargain Bin: Listed below are all of the books in the Backdoor Survival Summer Reading List. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone. Also, some of these books are Kindle e-books but you do not need a Kindle to read Kindle e-books. Simply download the free Kindle app from the Amazon site and you are good to go.
THE BACKDOOR SURVIVAL SUMMER READING LIST – NON-FICTION
The Unofficial Hunger Games Wilderness Survival Guide
The Mini Farming Guide to Composting
Meals in a Jar: Quick and Easy, Just-Add-Water, Homemade Recipe
Fight, Flight, or Hide. The Guide to Surviving a Mass Shooting
Don’t Be A Victim!: An Officer’s Advice on Preventing Crime
Emergency Air for Shelter-in-Place Preppers and Home-Built Bunkers
Survival Medicine Handbook
Guns Across the Border: How and Why the US Government Smuggled Guns into Mexico
Spiraling Downward: Thinking About and Planning for Economic Collapse
THE BACKDOOR SURVIVAL SUMMER READING LIST – FICTION
This month Emergency Essentials is having a huge sale on Mountain House Products. The selection is huge. Not only that, for a limited time shipping is free on all orders of $150 or more.
Note: Do not be discouraged if some of your MH favorites are on backorder (mine were). Emergency Essentials will still honor the price and ship your products to you as soon as they are back in stock. As an example, the items I order on the 3rd arrived shipped this week.
One of my personal favorites is the Mountain House Chili Mac (shown below) which is 40% off at $15.89 for a #10 tin. And for a snack or dessert, the Mountain House Ice Cream Sandwiches are one of the Survival Husband’s favorites. I am more of a fruit person myself.
This is by far one of the best sales I have seen on Mountain House. The only problem I am having is deciding how to spend my $100 Emergency Essentials budget this month!
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11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life: This little book will provide you with the motivation to get started or stay on track with a self-reliant life. 11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life, co-authored with my long time pal, George Ure (www.urbansurvival.com), and can purchased from Amazon.