Saturday, October 27, 2012

Prepping for po folk

Er, rather, as Bayou Renaissance Man put it:

This is a must read post – whether cash is an issue or not.  I will eventually get ‘round to reading the rest of the series.  But I wanted to spread the word on this installment particularly in light of the impending Frankenstorm or snore-easter-cane depending on who you read.

In BRM’s post he goes into quite a bit of detail on the contents of a bare bones food kit to keep one person going for a week.  The anticipated cost is around US $30 and I was able to build a kit at my local Wal*Mart based on these recommendations for about that.  I did read one thing wrong and only got 5 5oz. cans of tuna instead of the 7 recommended.  I will correct that as well as add a can opener from the dollar store before I give the whole kit and caboodle to the friend I put it together for.

Rewind to last night on the phone with my friend:

Me: So you do have plenty of groceries in the house, I trust.

She: Um, I think I have a couple of boxes of Cheerio’s…

This is my friend who gets thirsty and instead of going to the fridge and getting something to drink goes out to the car and drives to the local fast food emporium for a drive through super jumbo humongous soda with a price tag to match.

* Ye gods and little fishies!*  (to blatantly swipe a phrase from LawDawg)

So here I am, having just read BRM’s great post on prepping on the cheap and knowing we may have this nor’easter-hurricane-thing bearing down on us depending on the storms actual track (that we will finally know for sure some time around Thursday in the here’s where it went after the fact report) and I have reason to believe a very good friend who I care about very much ain’t got no preps in place.

I sense an opportunity to put the test to the info.

So here’s the inventory for the little kit that we put together today:

·        1 2-pound bag of Iberia long grain brown rice
·        2 1-pound bags of Best Bet elbow macaroni
·        2 1-pound bags of La Cena pinto beans
·        2 26-ounce jars of Great Value pasta sauce in two flavors
·        1 2-pound package of Great Value whole grain oats
·        5* 5-ounce cans of StarKist Selects chunk light tuna in water
·        1 5-ounce can of Butter Field chunk ham in water
·        1 5-ounce can Bumble Bee premium white chicken in water
·        1 Morton/McCormick sat & pepper set
·        1 Ozark Trail pocket knife
·        1 85-piece Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit
·        1 5-gallon pail with lid to put it all in**

* Two more cans of tuna and one can opener need to be added to match the inventory from BRM’s post.  The first aid kit was my own little addition since I have no idea what my friend may have on hand.

** At Mum’s recommendation we had originally grabbed two boxes of store brand minute rice – but they wouldn’t fit in the pail.  So I swapped them out for the bag of rice that does.  It may not be as convenient to cook, but it can be protected from the elements (and the cats) inside the bucket.

As mentioned elsewhere at BRM’s, having a bucket with a lid on hand has many uses.  It can be used to store water in case the water supply is interrupted and it can be used as a ‘sanitary facility’ if that stops working.  (Not at the same time obviously!)  In fact he has a whole post on just that subject!

The price tag for my little kit as put together so far at my local Wal*Mart on Route 38 in Tewksbury Marxistchusetts came to US $29.45 including tax.  The can opener will come from the dollar store and two more cans of tuna should be about US $2.50.  Since the first aid kit was about US $5.00 the cost of the basic kit does in fact come in at about the US $30 predicted.

As you can see, putting together this little bitty kit that’ll get you by for a few days of deconveniance is really no big deal.  Augmented by the pantry you should have on hand anyway, going a week or two without access to your local grocery store shouldn’t be much more than a tale to tell in later years.

Now I just have to get this to my friend before the storm hits.

Oh, BTW: I got five more of those knives for barter.  That was a great idea!  Thanks!

UPDATE: Here's another picture of the kit, all packed in the bucket.  That's the P-38 I mentioned in the the comments (good idea, Mr. B!).  I've taped a small rare Earth magnet from Harbor Freight to the inside of the lid to attach the can opener to.

Also in the bucket but not shown is a copy of  BRM's post that started this whole project.  Lots of good information there.  If you haven't read it already I highly recommend that you do.  There is a link at the top of this post.


Mr.B said...

Get p-38 or p-31 can openers.

(like these, only you can get 'em cheaper at gunshows or ebay)

THey take up no room and you can put several in each package.

Wolfman said...

Looks good! It doesnt have to be gourmet, just sustaining. Other things I would add: two gallons of water, a two pack of large stearno can, a long stem lighter, and wet wipes. Its amazing how much better one can feel with a quick full body wipedown, if one cant shower (here in the den, we call it the Brawny Shower). Mental and physical comfort is important in times of crisis.

HerrBGone said...

Just to expedite matters I’ve decided to include the P-38 that I used to carry in my old Nite Ize cell phone case. I’ve taped a magnet to hold it to the inside of the lid so it can be found easily and won’t be a potential hazard floating around loose in the bucket. I’ll pick up another one (or ten) for my collection and barter at the flea market.

Now I’ve got to go get those solar panels off the roof so the wind doesn’t take them down for me….