Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF?

Gaye Levy Gaye Levy  |  Updated: December 16, 2020
Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF?

The term old geezer has been around for as long as I can remember with the common definition being “an elderly man that is extremely old”.  That seems like an oxymoron to me but what do I know?

Wikipedia has this to say:  “Geezer is a slang term for a man. In the UK, it can carry the connotation of either age or eccentricity. In the US, the term typically refers to a cranky old man.”  Okay, so an old geezer is both eccentric and cranky.

Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF? | Backdoor Survival

I would like to soften that definition a bit.  To me, an old geezer is someone who has lived life for awhile, learned a lot from the school of hard knocks, and yet, in spite of age or other limitations, has a healthy curiosity about things unknown. An old geezer can be 40 or 80, and can be a man or a woman.  On many occasions, I have thought of myself as an “old geezer”.  Now that we have set aside a definition, today I ask and answer:  Do old geezers think or care about SHTF?

My answer is: Of course they do!

For the past couple of months, the concept of old geezers and prepping has been something I have given a lot of thought to. Perhaps it is because of the questions I get in comments and emails, or perhaps it is simply the recognition that many folks, regardless of age, are hungry for more than the simple basics of preparedness.  They thirst for material that melds mindset and inspiration with the tactical and practical aspects of prepping,  Heck, I seek that out for myself every single day of the week.

And then there is a popular website (name withheld to protect the guilty) that recently posted an article on prepping for seniors and suggested if you had relatives in their sixties, to stock up on Depends and obtain names of assisted living facilities that were prepper friendly.  Sixty?  Good grief!

Regardless of your age and where you are in your preparedness efforts, I feel safe in assuring you that old geezers do indeed care not only about prepping, and SHTF, but a lot of other things as well.

Prepping Gear That I Love

Last week I tested a new flashlight, this time from “LEDNut”.  This style of heavier, more powerful flashlights have become a new favorite.

This particular model, the LED Nut XML-T6, is priced at the low end of that range and so far performs as well as the others I own that are similar.  It comes with a rechargeable Lithium ion battery, charger, and an adapter for AAA batteries.

LEDNut XML-T6 | Backdoor Survival

Will it ever replace all of those Blocklites and mini crees I own.  No, not really because this is not what I would call a pocket flashlight.  That said, when I take Tucker the Dog out at night, this is the flashlight I use.  Given that it has a powerful beam that extends 1,000 feet, it is also better for walking at night and tactical purposes.

The Final Word

At the risk of sounding frivolous, there are days when we all take preparedness too seriously.  I feel there is room for all of us to laugh a little, even at ourselves, while we continue to examine how we are going to prepare for uncertain times.

Will there be an honest-to-goodness “lights out” cyber attack?  Is the Second Great Depression right around the corner?  Is the government going to round up prepper-types and confiscate our land, food, and arms for the greater good?

These questions have no age.  I hear them asked by twenty-somethings and by eighty-somethings,  And so, I say it again.  Yes, indeed.  Old geezers absolutely do think, care, and prepare for when the stuff hits the fan.

Old or young, I would love to hear your thoughts and comments on this subject.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!

If you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing to email updates.  When you do, you will receive a free, downloadable copy of my e-Book, The Emergency Food Buyer’s Guide.

You can also vote for Backdoor Survival daily at Top Prepper Websites!

Bargain Bin:  I carry my portable survival kit whenever I leave the house.  The nice thing about it is that it fits neatly in a pocket, day pack, glove box, or handbag.  If you are interested in more details or need assistance building your own kit, see 8 Essential Items: The Perfect Portable Survival Kit.

In the meantime, here are some items you should consider carrying with you as you travel near and afar.

100 BIC-style Lighters Disposable Classic Lighter:  Running about 16 cents each and free shipping, these are great to have on hand for both survival and barter use. Want fewer than 100.  You can also get a pack of 50.

Zippo Street Chrome Pocket Lighter:  Zippo has been creating virtually indestructible, windproof refillable lighters for more than 75 years. The Zippo Street Chrome pocket lighter is no exception. This lighter features a classic textured chrome finish and carries the same lifetime guarantee–to either work or be fixed by Zippo free of charge–for life.  All wearable parts including flints and wicks are replaceable.  Every prepper should own at least one Zippo!  Learn more about Zippos in the article What You Need to Know About Zippos and Lighter Fuel.

Blocklite Ultra Bright 9V 6 LED Flashlight: I own six of these little gems. There is a similar flashlight called the Pak-Lite (which is more expensive) but it does not have a high-low switch like this one. These little flashlights just go and go, plus, they make good use of those re-purposed 9V alkaline batteries that you have recharged with your Maximal Power FC999 Universal Battery Charger.

Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife: This “oh so sweet” knife is solidly built, stainless steel knife that comes razor sharp right out of the package. It will pretty much cut through anything the price is amazing.

Windstorm Safety Whistle: This particular whistle can be heard a long distance away and above howling wind and other competing sounds.  I love my cheapie whistles but this is the one I would depend on for wilderness survival.

Lavender Essential Oil:  This is the Swiss army knife of essential oils. My favorite lavender oil is from Spark Naturals.  Enjoy a 10% discount with code BACKDOORSURVIVAL.

Rectangular Tin with Window: Chances are you have something similar already that can be repurposed for free.

LifeStraw Personal Water Filter:  Too large for a pocket kit but important to have with you is the Lifestraw Personal Water Filter.  At only 2 ounces (in weight), the LifeStraw is suitable for a backpack or bug out bag.  It is easy to use and requires no chemicals to remove a  minimum of 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria.


Lemongrass is an amazing essential oil with so many uses for health and wellness.
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31 Responses to “Do Old Geezers Think or Care About SHTF?”

  1. Yes, Old Geezers do care. I am old and waiting for war. I supported this filthy, dirty, disgusting government for the Vietnam war where many innocent people suffered greatly caused by this terrorist USA government and has continued to lie to the stupid in America with them believing every word. Stupid is as stupid does. You are now getting back what you supported and continue to support.

    My gun is ready and the ammo is purchased and I am ready to fight. If I can fight for this filth I can certainly fight against it. Do you think I am wrong or crazy, then why are you here prepping?

    VIDER RED ALERT! The REAL Agenda Behind Obama’s Gun Control
    This is the attempted takedown of America

    Gun Store Owner: We Called FBI & Warned Them About Orlando Shooter
    The idea the FBI had no warnings immediately prior to the Orlando shooting just went out the window

    • Then if you are so disenchanted with America, vet or not, why don’t you move to Cuba or north Korea where you can enjoy the company of others who think the way you do. We tried to do the right thing the wrong way: Politicians know nothing about running a war. Soldiers do. it’s their business. Let them run it and stay out of their way – no place is sacrosanct nor is are any people who lend the enemy support. Fighting against guerillas, as did the British against the Colonist’s requires taking and holding ground, and bringing in more ground pounders to advance the line of attack. Yes, there is a line. You can’t see it as such, but it’s drawn wherever you don’t hold the ground. And that means a lot of soldiers to continue to take and hold ground, and thoroughly search those who live where you occupy territory. And tens of thousands more to continue the leapfrog process. We had had an idiot named Johnson who listened to the “Vunderkinder” he hand selected as his advisors instead of the men who had been there and done it. You cannot run a war from a desk 12,000 miles away. I think you are one sick pup who needs to be in a hospital or elder care home. The vigor of your hatred of America is not going to make you any friends in very many places, of that I am sure.

    • Bill is not saying that he hates America. He is saying that he hates the evil people in Washington that are running this great country. I stand with him. I am ready to fight anyone that tries to do harm to America. I to was in the Vietnam war and I also agree that Johnson was a dufus.
      I’m old. I’m a geezer, and I prep to prepare for what the imbeciles in Washington have in store for me.

    • Donald Conner, you must be VERY young to not understand what the Vietnam war did to those who served. You must be totally ignorant of what the government did in the aftermath (NOTE: I’m not saying you are “stupid” or “dumb” or anything else derogatory…but your reply that someone “disenchanted with America” should move to another country is an ignorant one. Vets, above all others are the patriots of this country and ACTUALLY gave some of their blood, sweat, and tears for her.

      Don’t diss a vet. It doesn’t sit well. Never has, and never will.

      To infer that a vet is a “sick pup” who belongs in a hospital or elder care home shows how IGNORANT you are. Your hatred of vets who SERVED (what did you ever do for your country except whine???) is disgusting AND shameful.

      AGAIN, vets do NOT hate America. Read a history book and/or a few vet accounts from the Vietnam era and you’ll (begin to) understand that the veterans are the greatest patriots this country has ever known.

    • It’s great being an OG. I enjoy my gray haired days knowing that I know how to fix about anything, build buildings, farm, can, shoot, reload, and that God is in control. My popcorn is stocked deep for the upcoming show.

  2. I laughed when I read this! Us old geezers are probably the main ones to prepare since we have seen so many disasters during our long lives. We have learned to be cautious and on the defensive. The only other two preppers I know are over 60 and over 70

    • I agree! Mostly older people are the preppers. The young folks I see calling themselves preppers are really spoiled, self centered punks that think if they buy a gun and a few boxes of ammo, they are prepared…and they believe they will loot and kill people that have preps. They store nothing, and do a lot of chest thumping about the mayhem and chaos they will cause.

  3. Gaye,
    Yes, we do PREP. I am 65 and teach Survival and Emergency Preparedness thru out the American Redoubt, hosting a Monday night class in Priest River Idaho.
    The majority of my class is of age about 1/3 is younger. It is good to have 20 something’s come to class every week and some bring their children, 6 to 18.
    I am on the school board and teach at the grade schools on special Safety Days and these younger children do have skill sets on survival handed down by family.
    Since the early 90’s when I started teaching large groups in Indiana till today, a lot of folks get it and do prepare. The skill sets handed down by US folks to our children’s children is a good thing out here. I also am on the SAR Team and whether we find you alive or not depends upon you survival skill sets.
    Thanks for all you do, I share your wisdom every week.
    Best Regards,
    North Idaho

  4. You can bet that I , a qualified geezer over 70 think about SHTF and have for many years. It’s on my mind all the time, trying to think of things I may have failed to put in my emergency supplies. I made my daughter and grand kids bug out bags and one each for my husband when we were in Alaska (earthquake preparedness). Every place we have been stationed I have adjusted our packs to reflect the local hazards as well as a national SHTF situation. I was taught to prepare by my miltary dad, everywhere we lived over the years. I think we as older folks think about this more than anyone between 21 and 30. Not that we worry more, but that the young don’t worry at all for the most part. For them it’s live for the day.

  5. Great article!!!! As this family continues down the road of “Preparedness”, I find more and more times I’ve needed to do a personal evaluation of my fitness and capabilities. (Not a fun thing to do as I age). Realistically it is a necessity. After a while, one realizes matriarchs and patriarchs of ones group, will have to do this not so fun assessment. As time has marched on, I have decided one of my main jobs, hopefully, will be the “glue, stability, calm and rational voice in a crisis situation”. After working as an ICU nurse in a trauma hospital several years, I imagine the stress level to be an equivalent. This is not saying I can’t do any physical labor, I’m saying be honest with yourself. Figure out where your capabilities are and build on them. Continue to work on improving your physical you as best you can according to your present physical shape and health. Make changes you can and know that everybody will be needed in some shape or form to survive when the “SHTF”.

  6. We geezers were prepping before it became popular. We prepare for the blizzards, power outages, storms etc. we can our bounty from the garden. Raise livestock reuse, recycle don’t waste anything. We are not the throw away society. We still communicate in person. The college of hard knocks degree never comes because you should learn someting new everyday, no matter how small the nugget of knowledge.

  7. A prepper at age 67. Funny I don’t feel like an old geezer. I prep for the the just in case scenarios. Just in case of winter storms, tornados, social security gets taken away, etc.

  8. I guess I come at it a little differently. I’m probably in the “Better Get Her Stocked Up On Depends” age bracket….but I don’t act like it, look like it (lie to me if you think differently, please) or succumb to it! As long as my (aging) body lets me, I’ll not “be” old. Why should I/we? I will fight age until it wins….and it will. Until then, prep on, fellow geezers and geezerettes!

  9. I’ll be 70 in December, but I don’t feel like an old geezer. although that’s what the young whelps will say I am. That’s ok too. I’ve got 50 years of life experience on you, and in the get down and dirty world of a real collapse, I think the things I learned as a boy on the farms of varied family relations and what I learned caring for our on 1/2 acre garden and time spent hunting and fishing and roaming the woods for mushrooms and elderberries and other berry crops are going to get me by better than their computer skills. My work history as a construction laborer, welder, truck driver, equipment operator and other jobs have taught me I don’t need a book to build a house. Just the materials, how to make a saw-pit, a say=w to cut, and we make boards. Or build a log house, Or underground shelter reinforced with laid rock internally.

  10. Damn right we do, we started it after we came back from Nam, with Mel Tappan, as the guru, everytime you do a book review, I think to myself to send you my entire collection of Curt Saxton Survialist fiction like “Deadly Caravan”,etc. a women a few years ago like you (age etc.) asked me why told her you know I am a nam Graduate, “I saw hell and liked what I saw”.

  11. Great article! I am 67, and I am the Program Manager for my (Virginia) county’s Community Emergency Response Program, part of the Emergency Management Department. We have trained over 400 volunteers in my county to be prepared and to respond quickly and safely in the event of a disaster. Most of my students and volunteers are between 60 and 75. They are active, engaged, committed, and determined to make a difference, and they understand their abilities and limitations. If SHTF, these folks will be the survivors and the examples for others to follow. Life experience has taught us that preparedness equals survival. I would love to share some of our experiences and activities with the people whose website relegates those of us over 60 to a world of Depends and Geritol.

  12. I think older people have some unique and valuable things to bring to the prepping community. We have experience, insight and, yes, perhaps wisdom. We have perspective. And (this might sound a little off the wall), we are coming down the other side of the hill and might be more willing to give it all if some of the worst scenarios come down the pike. My husband and I are certain we will never go quietly under the thumb of a tyrannical government. We would go down fighting. And since we no longer have the direct responsibility of providing for family other than ourselves, we might be a greater force to reckon with than some people might realize. Beware of the foe you underestimate.

  13. From everything I am seeing and hearing it seems that the “Geezers” are the ones sounding the alarms that all is not well and have the means and motivation to do something about it. I am not saying all by any means, but many. The 60+ people were the last to receive a real education about government in the public schools. I am just over 60 and had experience with new teachers coming into the elementary schools with socialistic ideals that they tried to pass on to the students. I know this because I took my homework to my Dad and asked him what this was all about. He became incensed and said he would have a talk with that teacher the next day. My Dad was the principal and the HS government teacher and made good on his word! This was in a small town in Kansas. I can imagine how many did not get that “talking to” in schools elsewhere.

  14. Probably the ONLY people who will read this article are the “geezers” amongst us…so anything I say would be like preaching to the choir.

    Yes, we (geezers) know a thing or two. Yes, we’ve had a few life experiences (or life-changing experiences). Yes, we prepare because we understand that no good thing goes on forever and ever. Political climates change. Moral climates change. Physical climates change (or so they try to tell us…I’m not convinced–yet).

    Age is also a relative thing. Yep, your young relatives DO think you’re old, but your own mind still says you’re still somewhere between 18-25 years old. Your body may say otherwise, but with age comes a certain wisdom in understanding your new limitations. Let the “young relatives” clean the gutters, climb the ladders, and do the heavy lifting.

    Our contribution/strengths (as geezers) to the prepper community are: stability, knowledge of what works and doesn’t work, foresight, forbearance, patience, experience, and a whole lot of common sense.

  15. Geezers are the only ones who’ve lived long enough to realize how drastically the world has changed for the worse and can see storms brewing in most areas of life. Most of us are retired and have more time to keep up with what’s going on in the world and in our government. Younger generations don’t have as broad a spectrum with which to make comparisons, and they are usually so busy with careers and family that they haven’t time to research as we do.

  16. I have no idea why this article has generated so much hate but that was certainly not the intent. I wrote this because I was offended when another popular prepper site talked about 60 somethings as doddering burdens on our families.

    Let me be clear. I am well into my sixties and know better. I am not some young whipper snapper making fun at older people. So why the hate mail?

    Also, let us be respectful of the opinions of others who take the time to share their thoughts in these comments. Name calling is no longer going to be tolerated. Period.

  17. Gaye,
    Keep up the good work! I have always “prepped”. Product of a childhood with large family and Father who lost his job for a few years. If it wasn’t for the food Mom, her sister and Grandma canned, froze every summer We would have gone hungry. SO I have continued to add food, water, Etc to the pantry. I’d rather be an ant than a grasshopper 😉

    • Kathy, my family history is very similar. I grew up helping to grow, can and freeze food every single year. If is wasn’t for my family’s diligent preparations, we would have gone hungry. I remember a time when we had homemade bread with milk from the farm up the street for breakfast, bread and peaches for lunch, and bread and peaches for dinner. That’s all we had until the garden produced in the fall. We had peach, apricot, pear, apple, plum and cherry trees in our yard, a raspberry patch and a garden. Thank goodness for the preparations of my parents and grandparents. Being an “old geezer”, I’m thankful I was taught how to prepare.

    • Hi Joan, Ours was 2 cans of Chicken Gumbo soup in a big bowl of rice 2-3 times a week. As Pop looked for work,what little meat there was went to him “to keep his strength up”
      My dad’s uncle ran a herd of cows and a farm so in exchange for milking(hand milking) and helping out and he shared the crops that Mom canned for us. I just wish I had been more diligent about learning the skills I’m currently trying to acquire but one thing us “old geezers” were taught is to persevere and keep at it.I only hope I have taught my sons “Never give up, Never Surrender” as a movie character once said.

  18. I’m an old geezer, 67 and have been stacking up guns and ammo about 50 of those 67 years. I love this country and the people in it but the government is not something I’d trust.
    I’ll probably die before I’ll need the guns and ammo but that’s okay to.
    I don’t consider this prepping, it’s just thinking ahead for myself and my family. Is insurance prepping?
    Anyway, love the discussion, even the sour folks. Makes me happy I’ve had the life I’ve had. Wish they would of to

  19. Late to the party as usual, and being (possibly) the token Brit:

    A geezer is well … a geezer. The modern, and to an extent Americanised, version is as you say, but the original, and as it is still used here within certain circles, is … well more like your ‘made man’. Someone who knows everybody, and everybody knows him. Been around the block and knows how things (and the system) really works. Nobody messes with him, but quite a few will approach him for advice, information and … support (of one kind or another). With the obvious tone of being ‘outside the mainstream officialdom’ (and possibly even a bit ‘dodgy’ – though no one will ever [dare] accuse him of that, and if he has a ‘record’ he isn’t one. A geezer never gets caught, lots suspected, nothing proven) he is … ‘reliable’ (if not necessarily cheap).

    ‘Old geezer’ may have become parlance for ‘just some old broken-down guy’ but it was originally a ‘cautionary term’ in the “He may ‘appear’ old and infirm but the mother of the last guy to try to mug him is still wondering where her son ran off to, and the daisies are doing really well in his garden” type of way. A “Be polite to the old geezer in case he takes offence, rips your arm off and beats you to death with it” sort of thing.

    So from that perspective, he’s the first to be prepping, knows where all the other preppers are, who’ll be a friend and who he’s already picked a spot for (with not to much digging involved as his lumbago is playing up) – and I suspect from reading the comments, there may be quite a few geezers here abouts.

  20. Old Lady Gezzer ,here. been prepping a long time .Just a way of life for me.In my sixies I obtained my Tech Ham radio license. In my seventies I learned how to build my own emergency solar setup system. I’am still learning every day Life is good and I’am still ready to rock and roll.Just a little slower than some.But wiser than many.
    God Bless America

  21. So, I’m reading this article this morning about us old geezers, then I see the dates on the replies several months ago. Oh well, if no one reads my reply, I’ll just call it therapy in being able to write this anyway.

    I recently turned seventy years old and although I am fairly healthy, I do have some physical liabilities I have to deal with, such as bad knees and limited energy. I have been a prepper for several years and have had to readjust my idea of what I will do in a shtf scenario. My ideas had to change too because our situation has changed in that we have moved to a different location. We bought a couple of acres in the piney woods of east Texas. We have six good laying hens that keep us well supplied with eggs and although we got here too late to plant a fall garden, I certainly have one planned for the spring. We keep a food supply of canned goods on hand as well as a supply of long term emergency rations ( some commercial and some prepared ourselves). We are surrounded by national forest, so with some effort, meat will be available. And, of course, I have my guns. Suffice it to say, I have enough ammunition to last awhile, although I truly hope I never see having to resort to using them in my lifetime.

    At one time, I studied and practiced survival skills. As I get older, I will most likely bug in instead of bugging out. That said, my bug out bag is well supplied and sitting behind the door.

    Survival in a shtf situation will certainly be more challenging as our age advances, but as for me, I’ll never lay down and roll over. If I have to crawl, then crawl I will.

    • I read it man.
      Pretty good reply and right on.
      Don’t forget the vodka. Last forever, great trade item and very therapeutic during the end of time!

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