The Bunker Brigade


It’s not easy preparing for Y2K and the end of civilization. Between amassing the water jugs, batteries, and kerosene and lime, even the most devoted survivalist can let a crucial detail slip by. Fortunately, survivalist newsgroups are packed with last-minute checklists of things to do before the clocks turn. Take your pick of recipes for rabbit. Discover the joys of full-metal-jacket ammo. Learn how to dispose of a dead body. You never know.

Okay, so maybe Y2K is a nonevent and nothing will happen. But for the people on these newsgroups, the possibility of a crisis has a romantic appeal quite independent of its probability. They like imagining themselves reduced to a primal nature. The picture of the lone hero is always foremost in their minds. It’s all very Emersonian in a way. Trust thyself, the poet said. And read in a certain light, these madcap postings seem like paeans to techy self-reliance. They are written by kooks with a whimsical streak, in love with the idea of survival more than the thing itself. Here’s a sampling of recent postings from the newsgroup misc.survivalism. (Some were edited for length only.) Judge for yourself.

Subject: Another Use for Vassoline and Cotton Balls

From: Bill

Hey folks if your looking for a way to heat up that cup of coffee or soup when your hexi tabs run out, try this . . . Take everyday cotton balls, dip/roll/cover/soak the cotton balls in some Vaseline jelly, depending on how much Vaseline you coat them with they can burn nice and hot for about ten minutes. Pack a bunch of prepared ones in a piece of Tupperware or what ever to keep sealed up. Just an idea. . . .

Subject: Kerosene and Lime

From: Mysterion

A while back somebody posted something about adding a little garden lime to kerosene to “de-odorize” it.

Is that somebody still here?

Has anyone tried this?


Subject: Another Source For Water Containers

From: Laurie-Ann Curry

I have been very antsy about being able to keep the water from freezing in the 250 gal doohickies we bought from the Coke bottler if we lose electric for more than a few days. The thought of buying water in the gallon jugs at wally world or aldis didn’t spin my wheels either so I called some plastic manufacturers for quotes on milk jugs. . . .

Subject: Risks and Benefits of Your Current Location


. . . If Y2K proves to be the most cataclysmic event of our lifetime, disrupting society on a long-term basis (Level 5), you will need to be fully self-sufficient in your current location. No matter how much food you stockpile before the Year 2000, at some point it will be used up. Do you have access to enough productive farmland to allow you and your family to survive a long-term crisis? If not, and if you truly believe Y2K will devastate our societal infrastructure for years, your present location is not acceptable.

Subject: Worst Case—Corpse Disposal

From: jimc—

After watching “The Stand” rerun on the scifi channel, and seeing all the corpses lying where they died, I began wondering if there was a protocol for handling this type of situation. If Y2K became a worst case scenario, how would you handle what could rapidly become a major health crisis? And are you responsible for identify the body before disposal?

Subject: re: Worst Case—Corpse Disposal

From: Lawrence R. Glickman

Leave em where they drop. *Tampering with a crime scene* is against the Law and will get you *hard time.* Simply report the shooting and let the Mod Squad clean em up.

Leave your spent shell casings where they fall also. You shot in self-defense because you *had* no other choice. Nothing to hide or be ashamed of.

Subject: re: Worst Case—Corpse Disposal

From: Lawrence R. Glickman

. . . If he/she bleeds out inside your house (where he/she *should* be if you are going to claim justifiable homicide) then you have to get out the Clorox and do a good job of cleaning up. Wear protective clothing and then throw *everything* away (after crime scene has been *cleared* by Law Enforcement). . . .

Subject: Re: recipes for rabbit


My favorite rabbit dish so far was Indian/Thai rabbit (extremely easy to make). Cube rabbit and cook in pan. Mix one can curry paste (from asian grocery) with one package powdered coconut milk (also from asian grocery) add probably about one cup of water and stir. Pour over rabbit and simmer for a little while, till it looks good. Put some onions or carrots or cabbage or whatever if you want. Pour over Basmati rice. Mmmmm . . .

Subject: What If You Had to Start Preparing Now?

From: A.T. Hagan

If I had to start now, I would focus on the fundamentals: water, food, light, heat/shelter, protection.

Water. There is still time to buy water. One gallon per person, per day. I would recommend a minimum of a 14-day supply. In addition, I would purchase a bottle of un-scented Clorox and a dropper. This can be used for emergency water purification. . . .

Food. Buy what you normally eat that does not require refrigeration. And, don’t forget a can opener. Again, a 14 to 30 day supply would be my minimum. . . .

Heat/shelter. Home Depot has some heaters that attach to the 20# LP containers for your BBQ. I would purchase a heater and 1-3 LP tanks. I would also get some 4-6 Mil clear plastic sheeting. This can be used to help insulate the home, close off areas, etc.

Protection. If you are not adverse to owning a weapon, I would recommend a Mossburg 500 12 gauge with an 18 1/2″ barrel. These can be purchased at Wal*Mart for about $190. I would add to this some #6 to #8 bird shot and some #1 buck shot. The bird shot will not readily penetrate drywall. Being that you are in an apartment, this would be important. The buck shot is useful outdoors.

A *very* important consideration not mentioned is sanitation. At the very least I’d get the sturdiest five gallon bucket I could find, some strong plastic garbage bags and the seat off of your toilet.

Actually, you can do better than that but this will get you through.