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During the war, a popular hobby during down times was to discuss in great detail what people were missing from pre-SHTF days. This usually involved good food, friends or family. I made it a point to avoid such folks. Why long for something you cannot have? Life was frustrating enough.

This doesn't happen so much today, now that life has returned to some semblance of normality. Heck, I saw my first post-SHTF bottle of Bordeaux up at Pete's.

There are a number of things from pre-SHTF days that I do NOT miss:

  1. Debt: The purchase of a good or service for delivery today at a greatly inflated price to be paid later. This just doesn't make sense to do these days. Nobody is far removed from work that puts (or keeps) a shirt on your back, food on your table or a roof over your head. If you need something you cannot do yourself, you work out a trade. You pay now.
  2. Traffic: Yet another benefit of a greatly reduced population and the fact the people work at or very near home. Perhaps this will change with future generations, and I know I'm not alone in this, but memories of being at work when SHTF occurred and being unable to help my family has left me paranoid: I do not wish to be in that situation again.
  3. Convenience: Just another word for paying an inflated price to get something now. When you spend all of your time working to pay off your debts or sitting in a car going to or from doing so, you have no time to do things right. So you generate more debt in order to eat now.

The Chinese say that it's a truly ill wind that blows everyone evil. While I am still in shock over the horror we endured during the war, things today aren't all that bad.

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Bill Drinkmore
Bill Drinkmore

My name is Zacharias William Drinkmore. Before the shit hit the fan (SHTF), my friends called me Zach. However, that became a dangerous name, one that nearly cost my life on several occasions when someone greeted me with, "Hey, there's Zach!" I'm not sentimental for the old days, so I quickly took to being called Bill. Some still call me Colonel since I mustered out of 3rd Virginia Volunteer Armored Cavalry as a Lt. Colonel, but they tend to be former comrades.

It's been long enough since the war that there are teenagers for whom this is the only life they know. My step daughter, who was born less than a year before the dead rose, asked me a question (I don't even remember what it was) that made it clear that she has no concept of the old ways. I'm not convinced that is a bad thing, but I feel compelled to document what I know so that others will remember.

I'll review books and movies — both fiction and non, current and pre-SHTF — that purport to offer tips and tricks for survival in this new world. I'll also provide some of my own as well as observations about how things are different (or the same) now as compared to pre-SHTF life.