Discussions

At the risk of going off topic a little, I thought this might be relevant: Early on in this process I tried to read up on fresh foods that would last a long time.  My approach has been more trial and error and less technological (though if a smart fridge could keep track of this for me, I’d jump at it).  So, this is less inventory tracking and more, best practices? When reasonable/if you have space store things by age – Older items are always in front so I use them first.  Older leftovers always go on top of newer ones so they get used first. Onions – keep them away from everything else, I’m told they may emit some chemical that can cause other foods to turn faster?  This is second hand, but I’ve heard that fruits ripen at different paces depending on what they’re exposed to so it makes *some* sense? Potatoes – Its not enough to keep them someplace dark, someplace cool matters too (learned that the hardware when they kept sprouting in the dark, not realizing there was a heating duct beneath the cabinet they were kept in… now they live in cardboard boxes in the basement.  I’ve never seen a sweet potato go bad in my life, but then they don’t usually last long enough for me to find out. Canned potatoes are apparently a thing and not always gross? Apples, lemons, and limes, and maybe other fruit – these apparently last a ridiculous amount of time in the fridge, if you have space.  I’ve had apples go bad on the counter after a week or two, I’ve had apples look/feel/taste perfect after a month or more in the fridge.  Same deal with lemons (great to pick up an otherwise bland meal). Broccoli and parsley – these can also last a decent amount of time in the fridge, if stored well, not packed in and stored dry, they probably won’t get slimy (I’ve seen it happen occasionally, but not too often). Hard cheeses don’t seem to go moldy as fast as softer ones.  I’ve had blocks of Parmesan last for quite a while, cheddar tends to go faster.  Buy blocks instead of preshredded and I’m told its safe to cut off mold if you do encounter it. I love heavy whipping cream, ultra pastured.  It usually lasts longer than its expiration date, which is usually good for a month or two.  Mix it with water to approximate half and half or even milk (works for some more forgiving types of baking even like biscuits). Leftovers – the key to avoiding food waste is to eat it.  First in, first out style.  Try not to cook more than you’re reasonably going to eat before it goes bad.  In *real* survival scenarios where you think twice about throwing out questionable food, remember that boiling/high-heat kills a lot of bad stuff – so soup can *probably* be resurrected a day or two past its optimal use by (not a food scientist so don’t quote me though). Freeze strategically but creatively, and get quality ziplock bags and vacuum sealers.  You can get creative, so if you do a pork shoulder in a slow cooker (add almost no water/extra liquid, you don’t need it) – save the juices and separate the fat that render out (makes great flavored rice, or a broth base for ramen, or replace butter/oil when cooking with pork fat).  You can save it in a quart sized bag and make it fit whatever shape you need. You can save the remnants of broth/stock in bags or even freeze them in ice cube trays, hell I’ve done that with fresh lemon juice for cocktails (keep the end of the world classy, folks). Consider smaller packaging for meat and use smaller amounts to enhance otherwise blander staples (instead of burgers, do a home-made hamburger helper style pasta with Parmesan to stretch supplies and lean on shelf stable pasta – add frozen peas to get a veggie in there)

Storing Water Outside?
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3

Few few follow ups (thanks for the additional tips & feedback!): To echo something that @Josh mentions, about macOS specifically (but also applies generally): keep in mind when your platform changes underneath you (Like, every automatic software update you don’t notice…).  For example I went back to test out some of my saved safari-reading lists and a recent update required I use a work-around to get them to load offline (and I needed web based resources to figure it out… Argh!  Prep Failed.) and is also encouraging me to take extra steps to ensure they’re backed up properly/fully.  A nusiance but something I can still work around.  This is not unique to macOs/Apple.  Any service/solution can change without warning rending it less useful, or even useless.  If anything I consider this more incentive to have formalized backup and archival processes in place (and an upvote for the Linux recommendation, probably more stable/backwards compatible?) rather than relying entirely on “easy/convenient” solutions. @Ef, if you don’t mind sharing/me asking – any particular cloud storage system?  No worries if not.  I assume/hope google has decent network security and I tend to go with google drive for small things in the cloud. @Matt, I say this in a good humored, appreciative manner: but I feel one upped here!  You have many good comments though and there are much worse things in the world than virtuous feedback loops, much appreciated.  Some additional thoughts inspired by your comments (Even if its not new to you, “sharing with the class”): In addition to old cell phones for offline/off grid backups, cell enabled tablets don’t always require cell plans for their GPS functionality to be intact (for the lay-person true GPS is a passive receiver that involves trilateration from multiple known [not locations?  Not 100% sure how the math works for orbiting satellites… but trilateration is the correct concept, not triAngulation – minor trivia fact – I don’t recall if cell phones rely on pure GPS, cell tower locations, or a combination, but the electronics are pretty small either way].  The two iPads I owned never had cell plans activated but research and testing revealed functional GPS units even without a plan. There are probably better explainers but this seemed succinct: https://www.safetrax.in/2017/09/05/gps-cell-tower-triangulation-help-tracking-location/ Openstreetmap is a good data source but you may need an app to make it work, look into things like OsmAnd (not used directly, but have experience with similar older apps).  Other apps might apply with different features but for those new to this want to give you a place to start.  Note that depending on how much data you pull down, it can take up a bit of space.  On the other hand you might have high quality turn by turn offline navigation for most of the continent.  Different apps might support different scales/download options, its been a while since I’ve used these. https://osmand.net Privacy in the world of big data is an interesting, weird, and at times dizzying topic for me.  This is more a wondering out loud: but even if an ISP can’t what you view when you’re using tor, I’d imagine they could tell you’re at least using it?  That alone might paint you as a person of interest unless TOR reaches a tipping point where many people use it for mundane activities all the time.  Anonymity vs privacy is an interesting topic.  IT OPSEC is weird, more than I’m willing to fully commit to, but I found this interesting to browse: https://www.quora.com/What-does-my-ISP-know-when-I-use-Tor

I need more time to read this article but “financial collapse” is a topic I’m interested in as well.  I tend to think about this in degrees of severity and responses.  To clarify I *am not* a financial expert and this is more of a thought experiment that a fiscal theory.  I also may have gone off topic a little, I apologize if thats the case (I think I focused on gold and silver too much, but the idea applies to any resource). The basis of this thought experiment assumes you’re “somewhere in the middle” financially speaking.  If you live in extreme poverty or have immense wealth – different rules apply to you.  To be clear – this is not fair, but I need a place to start and I don’t think its controversial to posit that the world is not a fair place. If you’re “somewhere in the middle” economically speaking you have finite but real resources and you need to choose how to best use them.  If you go all in on gold and silver and a scenario unfolds where gold and silver is not the optimal solution, you are SOL.  This applies to any financial instrument, and is sort of why mutual funds and diversification exists.  Diversification is meant to protect you from “normal” problems so you do well when the markets do well but you also suffer when the markets suffer, but “on average” (in the middle…) you do better than putting all your eggs in one basket.  You mention bitcoin and foreign currency – those are valid diversifications to consider and markets already exist for them.  Using more than one bank (ones that aren’t part of the same system) is another good idea. Indeed you can apply diversification to gold and silver, or ammunition, or liquor, or food and water, toilet paper even (aparently).  In effect thats what “prepping” is to me – broad spectrum diversification. Keep in mind, diversification is to help you weather the “average” storm.  During extreme events it can fail you.  If you have (pick your own number, I need easy math) 100,000$ in assets and diversify such that 10% is in gold and silver and find yourself in an extreme scenario where gold and silver is the only solution to your continued survival (the ultimate game, here) AND 10,000$ in gold and silver is not sufficient to meet your needs – you’re still SOL – even though you’ve diversified. So my question is – what does the scenario where you need X-amount of dollars in gold and silver look like?  To me it reminds me of the Wild West (I have a limited imagination, thats my failing not yours), where there are still farms, saloons, churches, and some sort of law enforcement.  There is a functioning economy but gold and silver are more trusted/secure than cash.  Land, livestock, equipment, and self defense is still really useful in this environment though. In a hypothetical zombie apocalypse, what will that 10,000$ in gold and silver get you? Not much, I’d argue, but if you diversified into ammunition and guns you’re living the good life (or at least a less bad life). So let’s say there is a market crash and everything goes sideways – people with food and water may accept gold and silver as payment – or they might hoard/price gouge.  If you have 10,000$ diversified in your own food and water you can wait them out (or wait for the price to go down). *if* the economy rebounds though, I’d rather have 10,000$ in cash ready to invest and catch the upswing, having gold might be a liability (takes longer to convert, you miss your investing window). I will admit for this next part, a sense of peace with fate is built into my “prepping” mind set.  In any extreme event where human mortality rates breaches 50% – I frankly don’t expect to survive.  I’m “somewhere in the middle” and for me, after a certain point, lucky and wealth take over.  I’m mildly but not extremely lucky.  I’m not wealthy.  For me, personally, the scenarios where gold and silver are key to my long term survival are also the scenarios where I’m anticipating 50%+ mortality rates and unless I’m lucky – I probably won’t make it.  Since I can’t change my wealth dramatically, I accept this as a probable fate and focus on scenarios I’m more likely to survive. Now don’t get me wrong, a hurricane, a mild global pandemic, a 6 month famine with dramatically decreased but not non-existence global food supplies, or a mini-finical collapse followed by a slow, modest recovery and I’m set.  You can’t prepare for everything, so prioritize those scenarios you are most likely to encounter, and the resources that apply to the broadest set of scenarios. Again – I am by no means an expert.  This is a thought experiment and I would love for someone to challenge my thinking or teach me something new.  I’m not trying to harp on gold/silver, its just not in my range of preps.  Thats my choice, you make yours.  Everything provided here meant to be helpful, not critical!

Digital preparedness
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in the vein of trying to add to the well thought out content you provide: Even if any of this seems foreign to you – think about how often times go-bag lists include something simple like a deck of cards or a book to help stave off boredom. Think of those as the equivelent of bandaids in your first aide kit.  Great to have for small issues, and something you definitely want, but not a replacement for large bandages or a tourniquet.  Just like you build up to elaborate physical preps you can also build up to more elaborate metal ones. So for me, music really helps calm me down – I’m thinking an extra pair of headphones and maybe an old iPod with some good play lists would be really appropriate for me personally (your individual quirks and solutions may vary).  Even just having some easy to implement mental “hacks” – “going for a walk” is a classic one for many right now. One thing I wonder about – how to “practice” for atypical events, some of the more extreme scenarios you describe.  Would watching shows about surgeries help with exposure to injuries/severe physical trauma in a more controlled setting (don’t know, not suggesting it, just thinking out loud)? I’m reminded of a few instances in life where I encountered personal “Outside Context Problems” (which is an interesting term to google!).  Like, the first time I was ever in a car crash (no fault) – I had no idea what to do, was a bit deer in headlights actually (not proud, but honest) whereas my ex-paramedic friend had seen things like that before and jumped right into action.  Some of that is having your wits about you but some of it is just exposure and practice (hard to practice car crashes if you’ve never been in one… paramedics probably see them often and are more ‘used to’ it?).

I appreciate your comments about the psychological aspects of this.  I was on my way to starting a new thread about mental health during all this but you’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head here. My two cents to add:  I don’t have specific links but I’d seen a few articles earlier on in this that talked about how people, even in masses, can surprise you with how they can come together in times of crisis.  Even if you see specific incidents to the contrary having some measured faith in humanity can help (even if you’re also preparing to be disappointed in humanity at the same time…).  Sometimes ‘societal problems’ like toilet paper shortages have solutions like newfound acceptance of bidets (silly, and I’m not totally on board, but my spouse is twisting my arm).  Loss of connections with friends can result in newfound appreciation for cool neighbors (from an appropriate distance…). I’ll volunteer this, as a fellow introvert, this has grated on me in ways that I didn’t expect.  While I was all for the socially sanctioned alone time at first some of my usual outlets and coping mechanisms for life in general are also gone (used to go to the gym more for mental health, can’t do that and working out at home isn’t the same for me).  Small things like eating out after a stressful day at work instead of making dinner or decompressing with friends over a drink at a bar are the little things I had taken for granted and really miss, things that can turn a bad day into a better day.

Thinking ahead: second order impacts?
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Storing Water Outside?
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Digital preparedness
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Thinking ahead: second order impacts?
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At the risk of going off topic a little, I thought this might be relevant: Early on in this process I tried to read up on fresh foods that would last a long time.  My approach has been more trial and error and less technological (though if a smart fridge could keep track of this for me, I’d jump at it).  So, this is less inventory tracking and more, best practices? When reasonable/if you have space store things by age – Older items are always in front so I use them first.  Older leftovers always go on top of newer ones so they get used first. Onions – keep them away from everything else, I’m told they may emit some chemical that can cause other foods to turn faster?  This is second hand, but I’ve heard that fruits ripen at different paces depending on what they’re exposed to so it makes *some* sense? Potatoes – Its not enough to keep them someplace dark, someplace cool matters too (learned that the hardware when they kept sprouting in the dark, not realizing there was a heating duct beneath the cabinet they were kept in… now they live in cardboard boxes in the basement.  I’ve never seen a sweet potato go bad in my life, but then they don’t usually last long enough for me to find out. Canned potatoes are apparently a thing and not always gross? Apples, lemons, and limes, and maybe other fruit – these apparently last a ridiculous amount of time in the fridge, if you have space.  I’ve had apples go bad on the counter after a week or two, I’ve had apples look/feel/taste perfect after a month or more in the fridge.  Same deal with lemons (great to pick up an otherwise bland meal). Broccoli and parsley – these can also last a decent amount of time in the fridge, if stored well, not packed in and stored dry, they probably won’t get slimy (I’ve seen it happen occasionally, but not too often). Hard cheeses don’t seem to go moldy as fast as softer ones.  I’ve had blocks of Parmesan last for quite a while, cheddar tends to go faster.  Buy blocks instead of preshredded and I’m told its safe to cut off mold if you do encounter it. I love heavy whipping cream, ultra pastured.  It usually lasts longer than its expiration date, which is usually good for a month or two.  Mix it with water to approximate half and half or even milk (works for some more forgiving types of baking even like biscuits). Leftovers – the key to avoiding food waste is to eat it.  First in, first out style.  Try not to cook more than you’re reasonably going to eat before it goes bad.  In *real* survival scenarios where you think twice about throwing out questionable food, remember that boiling/high-heat kills a lot of bad stuff – so soup can *probably* be resurrected a day or two past its optimal use by (not a food scientist so don’t quote me though). Freeze strategically but creatively, and get quality ziplock bags and vacuum sealers.  You can get creative, so if you do a pork shoulder in a slow cooker (add almost no water/extra liquid, you don’t need it) – save the juices and separate the fat that render out (makes great flavored rice, or a broth base for ramen, or replace butter/oil when cooking with pork fat).  You can save it in a quart sized bag and make it fit whatever shape you need. You can save the remnants of broth/stock in bags or even freeze them in ice cube trays, hell I’ve done that with fresh lemon juice for cocktails (keep the end of the world classy, folks). Consider smaller packaging for meat and use smaller amounts to enhance otherwise blander staples (instead of burgers, do a home-made hamburger helper style pasta with Parmesan to stretch supplies and lean on shelf stable pasta – add frozen peas to get a veggie in there)

Few few follow ups (thanks for the additional tips & feedback!): To echo something that @Josh mentions, about macOS specifically (but also applies generally): keep in mind when your platform changes underneath you (Like, every automatic software update you don’t notice…).  For example I went back to test out some of my saved safari-reading lists and a recent update required I use a work-around to get them to load offline (and I needed web based resources to figure it out… Argh!  Prep Failed.) and is also encouraging me to take extra steps to ensure they’re backed up properly/fully.  A nusiance but something I can still work around.  This is not unique to macOs/Apple.  Any service/solution can change without warning rending it less useful, or even useless.  If anything I consider this more incentive to have formalized backup and archival processes in place (and an upvote for the Linux recommendation, probably more stable/backwards compatible?) rather than relying entirely on “easy/convenient” solutions. @Ef, if you don’t mind sharing/me asking – any particular cloud storage system?  No worries if not.  I assume/hope google has decent network security and I tend to go with google drive for small things in the cloud. @Matt, I say this in a good humored, appreciative manner: but I feel one upped here!  You have many good comments though and there are much worse things in the world than virtuous feedback loops, much appreciated.  Some additional thoughts inspired by your comments (Even if its not new to you, “sharing with the class”): In addition to old cell phones for offline/off grid backups, cell enabled tablets don’t always require cell plans for their GPS functionality to be intact (for the lay-person true GPS is a passive receiver that involves trilateration from multiple known [not locations?  Not 100% sure how the math works for orbiting satellites… but trilateration is the correct concept, not triAngulation – minor trivia fact – I don’t recall if cell phones rely on pure GPS, cell tower locations, or a combination, but the electronics are pretty small either way].  The two iPads I owned never had cell plans activated but research and testing revealed functional GPS units even without a plan. There are probably better explainers but this seemed succinct: https://www.safetrax.in/2017/09/05/gps-cell-tower-triangulation-help-tracking-location/ Openstreetmap is a good data source but you may need an app to make it work, look into things like OsmAnd (not used directly, but have experience with similar older apps).  Other apps might apply with different features but for those new to this want to give you a place to start.  Note that depending on how much data you pull down, it can take up a bit of space.  On the other hand you might have high quality turn by turn offline navigation for most of the continent.  Different apps might support different scales/download options, its been a while since I’ve used these. https://osmand.net Privacy in the world of big data is an interesting, weird, and at times dizzying topic for me.  This is more a wondering out loud: but even if an ISP can’t what you view when you’re using tor, I’d imagine they could tell you’re at least using it?  That alone might paint you as a person of interest unless TOR reaches a tipping point where many people use it for mundane activities all the time.  Anonymity vs privacy is an interesting topic.  IT OPSEC is weird, more than I’m willing to fully commit to, but I found this interesting to browse: https://www.quora.com/What-does-my-ISP-know-when-I-use-Tor

I need more time to read this article but “financial collapse” is a topic I’m interested in as well.  I tend to think about this in degrees of severity and responses.  To clarify I *am not* a financial expert and this is more of a thought experiment that a fiscal theory.  I also may have gone off topic a little, I apologize if thats the case (I think I focused on gold and silver too much, but the idea applies to any resource). The basis of this thought experiment assumes you’re “somewhere in the middle” financially speaking.  If you live in extreme poverty or have immense wealth – different rules apply to you.  To be clear – this is not fair, but I need a place to start and I don’t think its controversial to posit that the world is not a fair place. If you’re “somewhere in the middle” economically speaking you have finite but real resources and you need to choose how to best use them.  If you go all in on gold and silver and a scenario unfolds where gold and silver is not the optimal solution, you are SOL.  This applies to any financial instrument, and is sort of why mutual funds and diversification exists.  Diversification is meant to protect you from “normal” problems so you do well when the markets do well but you also suffer when the markets suffer, but “on average” (in the middle…) you do better than putting all your eggs in one basket.  You mention bitcoin and foreign currency – those are valid diversifications to consider and markets already exist for them.  Using more than one bank (ones that aren’t part of the same system) is another good idea. Indeed you can apply diversification to gold and silver, or ammunition, or liquor, or food and water, toilet paper even (aparently).  In effect thats what “prepping” is to me – broad spectrum diversification. Keep in mind, diversification is to help you weather the “average” storm.  During extreme events it can fail you.  If you have (pick your own number, I need easy math) 100,000$ in assets and diversify such that 10% is in gold and silver and find yourself in an extreme scenario where gold and silver is the only solution to your continued survival (the ultimate game, here) AND 10,000$ in gold and silver is not sufficient to meet your needs – you’re still SOL – even though you’ve diversified. So my question is – what does the scenario where you need X-amount of dollars in gold and silver look like?  To me it reminds me of the Wild West (I have a limited imagination, thats my failing not yours), where there are still farms, saloons, churches, and some sort of law enforcement.  There is a functioning economy but gold and silver are more trusted/secure than cash.  Land, livestock, equipment, and self defense is still really useful in this environment though. In a hypothetical zombie apocalypse, what will that 10,000$ in gold and silver get you? Not much, I’d argue, but if you diversified into ammunition and guns you’re living the good life (or at least a less bad life). So let’s say there is a market crash and everything goes sideways – people with food and water may accept gold and silver as payment – or they might hoard/price gouge.  If you have 10,000$ diversified in your own food and water you can wait them out (or wait for the price to go down). *if* the economy rebounds though, I’d rather have 10,000$ in cash ready to invest and catch the upswing, having gold might be a liability (takes longer to convert, you miss your investing window). I will admit for this next part, a sense of peace with fate is built into my “prepping” mind set.  In any extreme event where human mortality rates breaches 50% – I frankly don’t expect to survive.  I’m “somewhere in the middle” and for me, after a certain point, lucky and wealth take over.  I’m mildly but not extremely lucky.  I’m not wealthy.  For me, personally, the scenarios where gold and silver are key to my long term survival are also the scenarios where I’m anticipating 50%+ mortality rates and unless I’m lucky – I probably won’t make it.  Since I can’t change my wealth dramatically, I accept this as a probable fate and focus on scenarios I’m more likely to survive. Now don’t get me wrong, a hurricane, a mild global pandemic, a 6 month famine with dramatically decreased but not non-existence global food supplies, or a mini-finical collapse followed by a slow, modest recovery and I’m set.  You can’t prepare for everything, so prioritize those scenarios you are most likely to encounter, and the resources that apply to the broadest set of scenarios. Again – I am by no means an expert.  This is a thought experiment and I would love for someone to challenge my thinking or teach me something new.  I’m not trying to harp on gold/silver, its just not in my range of preps.  Thats my choice, you make yours.  Everything provided here meant to be helpful, not critical!

in the vein of trying to add to the well thought out content you provide: Even if any of this seems foreign to you – think about how often times go-bag lists include something simple like a deck of cards or a book to help stave off boredom. Think of those as the equivelent of bandaids in your first aide kit.  Great to have for small issues, and something you definitely want, but not a replacement for large bandages or a tourniquet.  Just like you build up to elaborate physical preps you can also build up to more elaborate metal ones. So for me, music really helps calm me down – I’m thinking an extra pair of headphones and maybe an old iPod with some good play lists would be really appropriate for me personally (your individual quirks and solutions may vary).  Even just having some easy to implement mental “hacks” – “going for a walk” is a classic one for many right now. One thing I wonder about – how to “practice” for atypical events, some of the more extreme scenarios you describe.  Would watching shows about surgeries help with exposure to injuries/severe physical trauma in a more controlled setting (don’t know, not suggesting it, just thinking out loud)? I’m reminded of a few instances in life where I encountered personal “Outside Context Problems” (which is an interesting term to google!).  Like, the first time I was ever in a car crash (no fault) – I had no idea what to do, was a bit deer in headlights actually (not proud, but honest) whereas my ex-paramedic friend had seen things like that before and jumped right into action.  Some of that is having your wits about you but some of it is just exposure and practice (hard to practice car crashes if you’ve never been in one… paramedics probably see them often and are more ‘used to’ it?).

I appreciate your comments about the psychological aspects of this.  I was on my way to starting a new thread about mental health during all this but you’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head here. My two cents to add:  I don’t have specific links but I’d seen a few articles earlier on in this that talked about how people, even in masses, can surprise you with how they can come together in times of crisis.  Even if you see specific incidents to the contrary having some measured faith in humanity can help (even if you’re also preparing to be disappointed in humanity at the same time…).  Sometimes ‘societal problems’ like toilet paper shortages have solutions like newfound acceptance of bidets (silly, and I’m not totally on board, but my spouse is twisting my arm).  Loss of connections with friends can result in newfound appreciation for cool neighbors (from an appropriate distance…). I’ll volunteer this, as a fellow introvert, this has grated on me in ways that I didn’t expect.  While I was all for the socially sanctioned alone time at first some of my usual outlets and coping mechanisms for life in general are also gone (used to go to the gym more for mental health, can’t do that and working out at home isn’t the same for me).  Small things like eating out after a stressful day at work instead of making dinner or decompressing with friends over a drink at a bar are the little things I had taken for granted and really miss, things that can turn a bad day into a better day.

I’m not sure what point I’m hoping to make here, but I found the post interesting.  At the risk of going off on a poorly informed tangent, here is my take: History is useful for building models, it’s also useful for seeing when and how those models fail.  Much of my historical context is a mix or oral-lived history and probably an inadequate education but what I find most interesting is how people and society adapt and accept “new normals.” My oral-lived history includes my grandmother who grew up on a rural farm without electricity, my Father who “built” bomb shelters for play as a child of the cold war, and my own experience through the teenaged-years of the information age.  Ignore the whole “rate of change” thing and just consider how fast you personally accept something as “normal” (or in some cases refuse to accept that things have changed). I went from a feature phone to a late-model smart phone to a top-of-the line smart phone over 2.5 years, and yet work with people who think it’s “weird” that I dial numbers for conference lines instead of just clicking the link on an invite (I’m in my mid-30s even! I started clicking the links when I learned i could still use my phone and it would call me…). Back to the original point, I’m less interested in if “things are changed forever” or if we’re “going back to normal” because “normal” has always been a moving subjective target (similar to your comment about the past being a “foriegn country” – I’m just suggesting that ‘foriegn country’ is metaphorically Canada and that it’s not so far away and not so totally alien). So for example: mask culture, is that going to be a permanent thing during cold and flu season?  If it is, is that really the end of the world as we know it?  Telework and remote education were already happening, it just hit the gas though.  Local retail was already struggling with e-commerce.  These aren’t unexpected or unfamiliar types of change. I also like to humor extreme outcomes: Will this public health crisis be the end of the human race?  Probably not.  Will people suffer and die?  Yes.  It’s a question of numbers, we’re already up to (at least) 300k globally.  The difference between 300K vs 3 Million vs 30 million is the real question.  The smaller than number the more “familiar” the future will likely be. Second order impacts are important, but by their nature hard to predict (hence: The Prepared 😉 ). As I think you allude to, regardless of what happens, the future is coming whether you like it or not – it’s just a matter of how fast.


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