Author Topic: Trying to convert a friend  (Read 6836 times)

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Trying to convert a friend
« on: December 02, 2009, 06:40:16 AM »
I have had a friendacquaintance. I have been encouraging someone I know to start to prep a food supply. Instead it has gone in a disappointing direction.
It started off with a question some time back. What are you going to do if there is a disaster or civil unrest? The answer was " I'm coming to your place in the country"    He went on to say "he could some labor with him."
Well I just laughted and said bring plenty of spices and have one come every couple of days so we don't get too much to cook.
He acted surprised I would not welcome the idea of him and all his family. I went on to explain that I don't have the means to feed or house extra people above and beyond my family and one friend who I have a reciprocal agreement with.
I have mentioned food preps. to him several times and I always get I can't afford that. I go on about how its a investment that will make money.
Anyway I had coffee with him Sunday and posed the question again. What are you going to do if there is a disaster or civil unrest? This time the answer was disturbing and offensive. He answered with "I am going to my exwifes house and will take our grandkids there and will stay with them." I thought, well its a plan and not my house.  I asked what did the husband think about that? he said he didn't talk with them about it and went on to say he had a gun and the guy will do what he is told. 

Well I let him know of my disapproval and that he was sounding like the type of person I and most of my friends were preparing to defend against. I told him that I had to go and left.
I tried and failed.

Offline donaldj

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2009, 07:23:28 AM »
Most of my friends have been invited to my house as their BOL. They have standing orders that if they come, they have to bring every lick of food and every weapon they own with them. I will not hear "I didn't bring anything extra because I didn't want to inconvenience you" as an answer. My close friends know I prep, and under a simple "Hear me out on this....", and a 5 minute explanation, I explain what I'm doing, my offer of a BOL, and what I expect from them to gain admission. I like the idea of them knowing this stuff, even in the back of their minds, so they may react a bit more appropriately when SHTF and they get out.

Flat out, I know I'll need the help, and would rather have friends around me than "adversity makes strange bedfellows" acquaintances. Even if they don't come prepared, I won't turn them away.

I have encouraged all of them to prep, and one guy has about 50-60 pounds of various food stored up. Not much, but not bad for someone only marginally into it. I certainly will not badger or pester them on this subject, but occasionally they ask about my preps and I show them.

The other thing I did was offer to store their preps for them. Two are apartment dwellers, so don't have the space. I have a large basement that has plenty of room, so I do. If they take me up on it, I will clear a shelf off for them, and give them their spot. If this helps encourage it, so be it.

Bottom line, even if you have to prep EXTRA for them, having your friends and family watch your back is FAR preferable to relying on strangers or whoever you're thrown together with.  $100 for 300 pounds of rice to feed a known ally is CHEAP.

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2009, 07:25:21 AM »
You know, there is a difference between people who can't care for themselves and those who choose not to do so.  It is offensive for someone to make a comment that they will come to your place.  They may not realize the work we have put into this lifestyle, but once it's explained to them it becomes a choice.  We all have choices and those who turn away from truth will not get an entry on so many levels.  Those who can't care for themselves, I welcome whole-heartedly.  I still stock ramen and such to pass out though because I can't talk to everyone.

Offline jpommer

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2009, 07:52:03 AM »

I'd suggest you distance yourself from this guy, but I think it would be smarter to keep him close and on your radar. You don't have to have these discussions anymore. And the lesson for you to take home from this is that you can't expect everyone to approve of what you do either. But we here on TSP do!

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2009, 09:09:51 AM »
I'd suggest you distance yourself from this guy, but I think it would be smarter to keep him close and on your radar. You don't have to have these discussions anymore. And the lesson for you to take home from this is that you can't expect everyone to approve of what you do either. But we here on TSP do!
I might be concerned with the come to my country house comment but he does not know where it's at and the few that do know will never tell because they are aware and as concerned with being swamped as I am.  I just lost all respect for him. The way I see it if he would do it to that guy he would do it to me.
I will fade into the distance with this guy and as far as him prepping he has been informed and my job is over.

Offline volwest

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2009, 09:56:36 AM »
To be fair...your question was loaded.
It would be like a doctor asking me what i would do if i needed medical care...well, i will go to your hospital of course !!!

Now, the doctor could tell me "no" (because i was careless with my health for example), but he could also talk to me about disease prevention and the realities of "going to hospitals".

I have 2 unprepared friends that will come to my place when the SHTF, because they know i have prepared, and i would never turn them away for not doing what i do. They both have plenty to offer apart from being prepared the way i understand preparedness. What they would bring to the table might not be food and water, ammo and batteries or who knows what, but they bring 4 extra ears, 4 extra eyes, 4 extra arms and legs...together, they will bring more than 90 years of life experience and so on.

So i prep for 4 people...that is what i bring to the table, not because i am right and they are wrong, but because it takes numbers to make a village...

Now if you do not like the guy, then all of this is mute...but we all know that asking this question pre-SHTF, can result in silly ideas, answers, plans and comments. I never ask the question expecting to hear what would make sense to me...because it never will be ! and i know the answer anyway..."i will come to your place", survival wise makes perfect sense, just like it makes perfect sense to go see a doctor when you are sick, or a mechanic when you have car problems.

Instead of focusing on what they are not (prepared the way you understand it), we must focus on what they are as individuals. My role is not to convert them into prepared individuals, my role is to work like an inverter. An inverter does not reject a power source because it does not come into usable power the way the inverter understands power, but its role is to harvest what exists, and channel it to its advantage by understanding the power source itself. If anything, it is raw power.

...

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2009, 10:40:36 AM »
To be fair...your question was loaded.
It would be like a doctor asking me what i would do if i needed medical care...well, i will go to your hospital of course !!!

Now, the doctor could tell me "no" (because i was careless with my health for example), but he could also talk to me about disease prevention and the realities of "going to hospitals".
I don't see it that way. I don't advertise myself as a provider. The Dr. does. The hospital does. I do not. I only ask whats your plan? I have mentioned it to him several times over the past year. He believes in a coming shtf of some type. He has not done anything to improve his situation as far as preps other than to buy a gun and ammo. (not his first)
Coming to my house was not that offensive. It was a mistaken assumption and correctable. I don't want to be anyones total plan. I  can't provide for too many due to my circumstances and don't want someone operating under that assumption in a class 1 SHTF or EOTWAWKI. and them to think I let them down because I didn't live up to their assumptions.
The comment that the guy would do as he was told because he was armed was offensive as hell.


On the idea of them coming to my country house. It may have been OK had he started to try to provide for himself and his family. I my have worked out some kind of agreement with him for a emergency. He refuses to help himself, so it is what it is.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2009, 10:50:09 AM by Uncle Bob (he ain’t right) »

Offline fratermus

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2009, 12:30:21 PM »
I don't see it that way. I don't advertise myself as a provider. The Dr. does. The hospital does. I do not.
..
Coming to my house was not that offensive. It was a mistaken assumption and correctable. I don't want to be anyones total plan.
The comment that the guy would do as he was told because he was armed was offensive as hell.

I agree with you on these positions.    Him believing in coming SHTF and not planning (but threatening use of force) means he has chosen the wolf role in the sheep/wolf/shepherd scenario.  I've had to put distance (social or otherwise) between my family and folks like that before.

Now, allow me to disagree with the whole interaction a bit.  I don't think friends could/should be converted.  I do think we can lead by example and see who takes the bait.


Offline eno

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2009, 04:55:07 PM »
IMHO, you're right to distance yourself, if his last statement wasn't a joke. His only prep is a gun, he's going to his ex-wife's house (WTF??) and force his way in if necessary, he's bringing the grandkids but no mention of his child?? The more time you spend with him, the greater chance that he learns enough about where your country house is located. Besides, he sounds like a real jerk in general - why waste the time?

It does sound like you're pushing a bit on the conversion; no one likes being pushed to think a certain way...

T

Offline Heavy G

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2009, 06:45:28 PM »
I have converted my daughter.  She knows about the preps in general but I haven't shown them to her. 

I told her that if she told her friends about the preps, and her friends come to our place when SHTF, that I will chase them off with force.  I'm trying not to scare her, but she needs to know her friends are in danger if they want our stuff.  Hard lesson for a 14 year-old, but times might call for it.

When SHTF, all of us preppers will lose lifelong friends when we don't hand our family's food and security over to them.  If the SHTF scenario subsides and life goes back to normal, our friends will never forgive us.  We'll never talk again.  Too bad.  But surviving is a matter of life and death.  I'm a nice guy, but don't screw with my family.

Offline volwest

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2009, 07:16:55 PM »
Hey Bob.

Yes...maybe you do not advertise yourself as a "provider", but maybe people see you as one nonetheless...
Since his answer was "i'm coming to your place in the country", it surely means that he knew enough about you to understand that in a difficult situation in relation to survival, your place in the country was synonymous to finding better chances of survival...hence the question being "loaded" abstractly speaking.

After that, his moral compass, what he does for his family or does not do can surely give you clues as to his character (psychology). Since we both know where that relationship stands, i was thinking more about our general approach to family, friends and "friends" when i wrote what i wrote...and went beyond the psychology to enter natures and temperaments.

This subject comes up often enough, that i do think we perhaps should look at it from a different angle. Advertising, since you brought it up, can be extremely subtle...and questions not yet understood by the individual expected to answer them are inherently filled with tensions not yet recognized.

If you asked me what my "plan" was...i would have a hard time answering since the state of mind i am in, and the state of mind i will find myself in during a crisis cannot possibly resemble one another (again, psychology).
Before we start "converting" people, there is a tremendous amount of education that has to be put in place.

Let's go one step further with another abstract metaphor...

The freeway is this 7 lane that naturally leads life to what we first expect...the economy of energy (i'll just come to your place for example), multiplicity, bio-diversity and creativity but with a lot of phlegm and "try-fail"...which makes us think that the freeway, which is large and traveled by everyone is the route that will lead to sunny vacations, the holiday route if you will...
But the freeway is the wide route which naturally bring us to the precipice of evolution...which means...the dissolution by the death of the individual that attempted to adapt and will have, theoretically transmitted certain information to those that follow him (break lights ?).

Nonetheless, these freeways are so wide, and they accommodate so many at a time, that they seem like the wisest and safest routes.

Guides for freeways are all over the yellow pages...And all those guides (i could name them...but) bring us and show us the way of the freeway...and the freeway is rational and reasonable, and the people we meet there resemble one another, because they meet in the ordinary, to talk about the extraordinary.

Cheers.

Offline Truik

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2009, 07:28:28 PM »
I don't think many people consider the sincerity of the question when it is posed to them.

As far as saying they would come to your place, in addition to not considering the logistic consequences of his decision, he may have also just been trying to be "nice" by saying you have the safest place he knows.

Then again, after the comment about the husband doing what he is told, I wouldn't want that guy anywhere near me or my place when the SHTF.

Anyway, I don't know the guy and that's just my opinion (to be taken with a grain of salt).


Offline Orionblade

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2009, 09:07:06 PM »
There are two types of people that I've run into. Those that think preps are a good idea, and those that think I'm a wack job for even thinking about it.

The second group is almost invariably ignorant, misinformed, and largely liberal. Very few are pro second amendment, and even fewer are anything I'd call a conservative or republican.

The first group is incredibly diverse, and even includes some gun-control proponents, but they're ALL either rational, collected individuals that took a moment to think about my question/comment, or had thought about the whole prep-for-SHTF concept for themselves. A few, however, are scared shitless about the NWO and the NAFTA Superhighway, and ramble on and on for hours about the Amero and the great doom of dooms looming upon us from the 2012th Airborne Anunaki UFO Roswell Velvet Elvis Nubiru Division.

That said, a 9/11 truther was largely responsible for me starting to poke around with the whole "what if?", so my conclusion is that everyone has their place. Prepping vs. not prepping is a dynamic equilibrium reaction. The act of prepping often has little positive feedback unless you sit and think about it, and are actively engaged in the daily running of your own life. Those that kind of bum along may be "turned on" at some point, but when they fail to see large sums of money being saved or created by their preps, they eventually let them go. If everyone (literally everyone from we lowly peons to the titans of industry) prepped, then there would be nothing to prep for, since all of our collective preps would make even the most tragic disasters go by with very little problem. We'd all be bugging in, out, or around, have our preps with us if we left or stayed, and wouldn't notice any day-to-day changes unless we had to break out the chainsaw for a few afternoons of harvesting freshly fallen firewood, or find a new home because our old onew as burned, shaken, or blown down, or flooded permanently by the new ocean opened up by that naer-do-well rogue asteroid. Tradgedy would be transmuted to mild inconvenience, and the whole notion of prepping would be lost to the following generations with the near unanimous thought: "Prep for What?" Then, with the next major disaster, war, or other horrific act of non-individuals, you'd have a new generation of preppers born that were ridiculed and scorned by their grasshopper friends, all because they had been institutionalized, and anything that goes against the institution ("system", government, etc.) must be wrong/slightly weird/etc.

When you meet 'em, help them to see the fragility of the system, they'll start thinking about prepping all by their lonesome. If not, then we won't miss their GAP in the Jean Pool.

Meanwhile, i'm going to pull my Levi's up, take the dog for a walk, and check on my Biltong.


Offline soccer grannie

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2009, 06:52:07 AM »
Planted a Seed: In a conversation with a dear friend, I asked, "What would you do if there were an ice storm or tornado, no electricity and your car was low on gas?" Her response, "I would be in the dark, hungry, cold and no way to get anywhere." It was something she had never thought about. Strange how one simple question can plant a seed.

Offline Sarcasmo

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #14 on: December 30, 2009, 01:54:54 PM »
WOW!  This is a really interesting thread (honest, no sarcasm intended).  About your "friend" using a firearm to force his way into his ex-wife's house.  That's some bad seed there.  No amount anything is going to change his moral compass.

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #15 on: December 30, 2009, 02:14:10 PM »
I ran into him the other day when I went out for breakfast. He saw me so I got mine to go. I have since changed the place where I get coffee on the weekends in that town. Time and distance is the plan.

Offline Orionblade

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #16 on: December 30, 2009, 07:13:07 PM »
Offer to buy him a tattoo, just to help everyone else out post-shtf.

http://www.90meat.com/beefDiagram.gif


Offline Citizen Zero

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #17 on: December 30, 2009, 10:40:58 PM »
Approaching others with the idea of prepping can always be a thorny issue. The sheep are really comfortable wearing their rose colored glasses, when the thin veil of their "reality" is pierced it can be complicated. Sometimes we score a home run, and sometimes we loose the game.

The individual in question that was the reason for this thread is a problem. Unfortunately there are too many people like this that feel that they are "entitled" to get what they want, whether it be by crying to the government or taking it by force from those that happen to have planned ahead.

I may be going out on a limb here, but my opinion is that all those that wander the face of the planet with an entitlement mentality need to find an expedient way to remove themselves from the gene pool for the betterment of all humanity. Try the Kool-Aid, I hear its pretty good (and it matches perfectly with the rose colored glasses)..

Sorry. People that figure that they can leach off of other people, or outright take steal what they want, only because they they had no forethought whatsoever, really makes me angry.

Offline Dawgus

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #18 on: December 31, 2009, 07:00:20 AM »
 I've all but given up on getting ANY of our friends on board at all. One gave me a similar answer, "I have a gun, I'll get food". While I tried to tell him he wouldnt't be the only one, I had to kind of snicker since I know he has an old 32 S&W that hasnt been fired in 20+ years and maybe 8 loose rounds in a drawer. His new wife told us that her mother was one of those "y2k crazies", and that they had sold everything she had after she passed away in '02. Now this girl won't even keep 2 weeks worth of food on hand. He's convinced that his traning as an army tanker 18 years ago will be an advantage against his unsuspecting neighbors. *sigh*
 I have been layed off since February 8th, and thanks to our food preps and growing/raising as much as possible, we eat better than we did 8 years ago when we had more money but didn't prep. No matter their attitude, they're still friends and come here every Sunday for dinner so they can have a meal that isn't dollar store soup and ramen noodles since he lost his job a month ago. I remind them about food preps and not having to spend it all at once, but it falls on deaf ears every time. She says "I can live on ramen noodles and cereal", and he says "I ate mre's for 3 months, I can eat anything"...all while they're devouring home canned green beans, biscuits made from our storage of flour, and 2 rabbits I butchered for dinner.

Offline Heavy G

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #19 on: December 31, 2009, 08:50:00 AM »
Great post, dawgus.  +1.  You have captured what so many people are thinking.  And the ones you're talking to aren't even the ultra grasshoppers who live on Taco Bell and X Box.  

Lots of people will die.  I don't wish it, want to be "right" about the need to prep, and don't want to even think about how bad it will be.  But I'm a grown up and a man so I have to prepare for bad things.  

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #20 on: December 31, 2009, 10:47:27 AM »
Planted a Seed: In a conversation with a dear friend, I asked, "What would you do if there were an ice storm or tornado, no electricity and your car was low on gas?" Her response, "I would be in the dark, hungry, cold and no way to get anywhere." It was something she had never thought about. Strange how one simple question can plant a seed.


Sounds like your question was received well. Good job

Offline volwest

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #21 on: December 31, 2009, 10:54:25 AM »
Five years ago i started working with this guy i met through a mutual friend. As carpenters mostly doing remodeling, decks and fences, custom furniture and so on, we spend long hours talking about various subjects.

The guy was never a prepper. Never had more than 2 days worth of food in his house, no more than 2 days worth of water...but had a pretty good amount of camping gear, tools and know-how in various realms.

After touching on various subjects without directly making my survivalist "tendencies" known to him, i realized that his understanding of our community was limited to loners having too many guns, doomsday mentalities, and individuals having anti-social personality disorders.
Not that he was right or wrong, but rather completely misinformed and blinded by what the collective has come to believe about survivalists and the evolution of such a movement.

So instead of asking him what he would do in certain circumstances, which i find a bit dramatic...i focused on news stories where preparedness had proved to be an extremely rational and reasonable asset in this game we call life, and where the only rule is to survive.

Then we took him camping with us.
I never talked about our preps, our guns, our plans and ideas...but we sure demonstrated that the way we did thing was efficient, thoughtful, expedient, and overall aligned with the economy of energy everyone is after biologically, especially in an environment where "comfort" (physiological and psychological) is lacking.

Just like with teenagers (lol), i gently guided him until he "discovered" for himself the benefits of a state of mind, of a biology, of a physiology that understands and perhaps above all remembers that survival is an instinct we have come to view as "uncivilized" and unreasonable (paranoid). It does represent a time where our specie lived a short life, a hard life...and the conditioning we endure in our modern age in relation to comfort and accomplishments are so foreign to our primal state, that most run away in fear from the idea that we might be on our own while facing a "disaster".

The success or the failure of bringing people to understand the validity and the freedom that comes with self-reliance is not that important. It is a challenge void of good or bad results...because to compare is to negate our social protocols.

They say "actions speak louder than words"...although i could argue the point since our use of language has become a compulsion, and words actions...it remains the simplest and most direct route to convey a sense of discovery, since truths are only found in the well of our own depth.

Just like with special forces teams...each individual has a realm of expertise.
I find it foolish to try and be everything. The tendencies of survivalists to extend themselves to as many disciplines as possible is negating our nature. Tribes of past understood this, and for more than 90% of our time on this planet we lived by this understanding. If specialization is only for insects, then we wouldn't have a specialized biology. We are social creatures, because it makes sense and aligns with the economy of energy principles that govern everything on this earth...insects and mammals, plant life and minerals (lets remember here that all species, flora and fauna, utilize the "specialization" of each others for their survival, in a delicate balance of needs and specialties).

So i never ask "what would you do if...", but i sure always ask "what are you interested in", because i know that i cannot do everything, and i sure cannot do everything well. This sense of community, this sense of specialization and its importance in relation to the survival of our specie has come under fire from some survivalists.
We specialize, because our ancestors realized that time and energy was paramount to survival. If we take the realm of medicinal plants for example, it takes years to be knowledgeable. It is a full time job...and reading a couple of books on the subject hardly makes us experts.

Self-reliance is not about doing everything yourself, nor it is being everything by yourself. Self-reliance always was, and will always be a group affair..."Self" is impersonal, it is not "me-reliance"...even though one can achieve such a state, it most likely does not align with the economy of energy principles.

A team of one, is not a team...neither is a bunch of teams of one.
So my buddy will never be a "prepper"...but he sure can be part of a team. The key here, is not to convert someone into something they will never be, but to find and nurture what the role of this someone might be within a team...your team.

Once you nurture this role, this "position", the person will grow and take on more tasks because this famous and abstract "self" will be realized.

Before you ask a nurse to be a soldier, ask her to be a better nurse.

Offline Uncle Bob (he ain’t right)

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #22 on: December 31, 2009, 11:55:43 AM »


Wow, that's a mouthful.
I took the more direct route because I feel we don't have that much time (1 maybe 2 years) before the economy takes a dump. I had placed examples and hints out there the year before I asked that question not to mention the region had been through the worst ice storm in a century during which they were without power for several days.  I wanted to know his mindset and the answer he provided was more revealing than I was expecting to hear. It's sad but I had hopes of one more prepared person in our area. As I see it my reluctance in ever discussing my country place paid off and will continue to be the norm.

Offline Dawgus

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #23 on: December 31, 2009, 12:08:57 PM »
Thanks Heavy D

 They ARE actually the taco bell & Xbox type.She's been layed off for 4 months, he left his job a month ago. Rather than do gifts that made sense, it was video games, star wars collectables,  and matching knee high moccasins. (WTH?) I understand christmas gifts and all, but when you're eating ramen noodles with hot dogs and the car payment is 2 months late, you'd think common sense would show a bit...guess not. Food vs $75 moccasins, hmmmmm. He told me last week that the cable got shut off not long after he said they ordered $30 worth of pizza to eat while playing the latest PS2 war game.

 We've offered to give them a bit of food just to help, but they've refused. Neither of them can make the simplest things from scratch, she won't eat our eggs because they're green, she won't eat bambi, he doesn't trust home canned soup, she won't eat our potatos since they grew in the DIRT. They're great friends, but typical sheep that we're all to familar with. My wife and I have talked quite a few times about letting them come here if TSHTF, but we've decided not to. They have no skills, no ability to help much, and would be more of a burdon. I don't like the idea of good friends possible starving, but I dislike the idea of people with no skills or means to help showing up here even less.

Offline HelenWheels

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #24 on: December 31, 2009, 02:39:55 PM »
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she won't eat our eggs because they're green - tell her they're dyed Easter eggs - you're trying out a new dye for Easter
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she won't eat our potatos since they grew in the DIRT - where in the hell does she think potatoes are grown?? But, to appease her, tell her you grew your potatoes in hay.


Offline Dawgus

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Re: Trying to convert a friend
« Reply #25 on: December 31, 2009, 03:42:46 PM »
 She won't eat ANY eggs that aren't the white ones from the grocery store, just because they're "wierd colored". Then again, she also thinks the reason eggs are kept in the fridge is to keep the embryo's from growing. She fully admitted not wanting to crack one of our eggs because she was afraid she would find a chick. Apparantly those commercial farm chickens plop eggs straight into big refrigerators.  ::)

 She is only one of many that wouldn't eat our potato's for the same reason. She thought (like many others) that potatos grew on a bush. I've gotten the same exact comment about carrots...I sware I should start a thread about silly and stupid questions and comments we've gotten about the garden, animals, and prep stuff. Some of em are real doosies.