Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How to get your man interested in emergency prep: Zombies!

How to get your man interested in emergency prep: It all comes down to the zombies
Article from KSL.com
SALT LAKE CITY -- Do you have a husband who claims to understand the importance of food storage but is less than enthusiastic when it comes to No. 10 cans? Does your son groan when asked to move your canning jars from the attic to your kitchen? I, too, pondered how to get the men in my family more excited about emergency preparation.
And then I noticed something.
It began with Will Smith’s "I Am Legend." Then came the video games, the TV series "The Walking Dead," finally solidifying with James Dashner’s "The Maze Runner." Suddenly my husband and son couldn’t talk enough about how to prepare for a zombie attack. Discussion groups were popping up in my son’s Sunday School class, and I was even invited to join a Facebook page dedicated to preparing for Zombies.
So if your spouse just can’t seem to get excited about water barrels or freeze-dried zucchini, here is a list of top 10 prep questions designed to ignite more enthusiasm.
In case of a Zombie attack:
1) Do we have an adequate water supply?
The rule of thumb is one gallon of water per person per day. Along with 55-gallon water barrels you can use soda bottles to store water, but avoid milk jugs since they deteriorate too quickly. Eight drops of bleach per gallon will kill microorganisms (16 drops for cloudy water).
Note: If a zombie falls into your water supply, avoid trying to sterilize the water with bleach. Zombies are considered MACRO organisms and won’t be affected by common household bleach. Throw the water out with the zombie.
2) Do we have enough food if we couldn’t go to the market for several months?
Start with a 72-hour kit, get a three-month food supply and then build up to a year’s supply. Many sites provide free storage trackers or calculators to determine what you need for your family as well as serving as an inventory.
Note: A 72-hour kit is a must if you are forced to leave your home quickly due to a zombie infestation in your community. Depending on the species, most zombies are relatively slow and stupid but they don’t get fatigued, so time is of the essence when you need to get out of Dodge while you can.
3) Do we have emergency fuel?
The type of fuel needed for heating, lighting and cooking will vary depending on your location, living arrangements and space constraints. Emergency Essentials has a great article about the pros and cons of various types of fuels. Keep on hand a good supply of candles and matches. Whatever fuel you choose to store must be done with caution and common sense.
Note: Never let a zombie play with matches as they are often very combustible. Your dwelling could go up in flames along with all of your emergency prep (and possibly you with it.)
4) Do we have comfort foods on hand?
Fighting off the walking dead can be stressful, even in the best of times. Our family likes homemade popcorn, chocolate, jam and granola bars, and we keep a fair amount stocked in our food storage. Your list might include macaroni and cheese, cookie ingredients or pudding. Sit down now with your spouse and make a list while the yard is quiet.
Note: It’s harder to think of these things when you’ve got the distraction of fingernails scratching on your doors and windowpanes.
5) What about non-food items?
Think about your personal hygiene. While your significant other may claim your breath could kill a zombie, in reality this often is not a very successful form of self-protection. Store such items as toothpaste, toothbrushes, deodorant and soap. Make a list of paper products, pet needs and first aid items. (Click here for a suggested list.)
Note: While it’s best to avoid a zombie scratch as it may lead to infection and a new personality, having adhesive bandages and antibiotic ointment on hand will help with those nasty scratches and scrapes you may incur while scrambling away from an impromptu zombie visit.
6) When the power goes out.
Although zombies are generally clumsy when it comes to dexterity and can’t physically cut your electrical lines, for some reason power outages are common during zombie attacks. Keep flashlights close by and stocked with fresh batteries. Food in a refrigerator can be kept cold for four hours if the door is kept shut. A full freezer will hold the temperature for 48 hours and a half-full freezer for 24 hours if the lid is kept closed. Keep on hand a food supply that will last for several days and that does not need to be heated or refrigerated.
7) What about a garden?
Raised garden beds are great for small yards. (Click here for a kit that takes less than five minutes to put together or here for directions on making your own.) Fill the bed with the best soil possible. It’s better to put a ten-cent plant in a five-dollar hole than the other way around. Keep a year supply of seeds on hand.
Note: Zombies are not usually attracted to gardens like other common rodents. They are meat eaters and avoid fruits and vegetables at all costs.
8) Keep your car fueled and your cellphone charged.
Although zombies like chasing cars, they aren’t very fast, and you can use your vehicle to level several at once that may be blocking the roads. Keeping a battery-operated AM/FM radio close by will keep you up to date on community emergency information and plans.
Hint: When driving, aim at zombies at a right angle as hitting them straight on may cause “shrapnel” to fly through your windshield, resulting in costly damage and possible loss of life — yours. (Because — of course — they are already mostly dead.)
9) What about loved ones outside of the affected region?
News of a localized zombie attack will spread quickly across the United States. This will undoubtedly cause panic to those who may wonder if you have been a victim of a zombie Thanksgiving feast or managed to make it safely to a shelter. The Red Cross has developed the Safe and Well website where outside friends can know of your well-being. You will be able to post messages on the website indicating your status, current whereabouts and that you will contact loved ones as soon as possible. During large-scale zombie attacks, you can use the toll-free Contact Loved Ones (CLO) voice messaging service at 1-866-78-CONTACT. CLO lets you leave and pick up messages.
10) What is our family plan?
FEMA’s ready.gov website has a great Family Emergency Plan template in PDF form. Each family keeps a card with emergency contact information and where to meet in case of disasters. Pick a family gathering site in case a disaster happens when family members are separated due to work or school.
Note: Avoid meeting places like cemeteries and morgues, as they are often a hotbed of zombie activity.
These are just jumping-off points to help out in frank discussions with the male members of your family. Remember, no one expects a zombie attack, but being prepared for one will bring peace of mind to even the most skeptical.

Ramona Siddoway is a freelance writer who has published articles in Belgium,
Angola and the United States. She lives with her husband in Houston. You can read more at ramonasiddoway.com
Article from KSL.com 


  1. I love this article! I'm sort of an emergency prep nut, but my boyfriend is "uninterested". However he loves talking about zombies, so this article has given me the perfect way to get him involved and for us to see eye-to-eye on emergency prep. Thanks!

  2. My pleasure...I have to give credit to Ramona Siddoway who wrote the article, and KSL.com for the original post. I thought it was really creative and wanted readers to see there ARE MANY different ways to encourage Emergency Preparedness...you just have to work on common ideas...ZOMBIES ARE GREAT!

    Thanks for your note!