March 27, 2014 at 4:12 am #3921
When I was incarcerated, I learned very quickly that nothing can be given away during times of scarcity:
In short time, I couldn’t eat the “baloney” we often got for our lunches, no matter how much hot sauce I put on it. To this day, just the smell of real baloney causes me to actually vomit and wretch uncontrollably (granted the government baloney was purple and green, but they smelled similar). Still, the food we got was little, and people were often hungry. I benefit from having little natural appetite to begin with, so I often had food that went unused…food that people wanted.
The short version is this: people asked, and since it would (somehow) get worse and “go bad” anyways, I said, “Sure, here you go.” Well, other people heard that I didn’t eat baloney, so they’d ask for it the next day. Well, the guy who I’d originally been giving my baloney to didn’t like that. A fight broke out between a few people, and it was bloody.
Eventually, I figured that even if it had no value to me, and would go bad anyways, the best method of distributing the baloney was to essentially trade/auction it off to the highest bidder. If none of what I got was worth anything to me, I’d in turn trade-up and get something I could actually stomach, like the moldy bread or borderline-rotting apples. But I never gave anything away for nothing in return after that.
I actually got some pretty good stuff out of it occasionally, like Ramen or bag of tortilla chips. On one occasion, we used a week of baloney and some other items for the last remaining roll of toilet paper in the pod, when all others had disappeared 10 days earlier, but that in and of itself is a whole other story.
Morals of the story:
Everything has value to someone.
People will expect things if you give them away.
Good intentions can lead to bad results.
Seemingly insignificant things can explode into violent encounters.
Don’t be an idiot and get locked-up in the first place.March 27, 2014 at 4:16 am #3923
Gypsy Wanderer HuskySurvivalist
Very good Morals!!
Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.
George S. PattonMarch 27, 2014 at 4:24 am #3935
Excellent lesson, and thank you for sharing it. I would not have thought of that potential outcome.March 27, 2014 at 11:53 am #3991
You sum up morals very good.
I see topic of “charity when SHTF” very often, and I can say that in special situations doing charity is not good idea.
As you say there that people will expect more, you are very right.
One of the first thing to do when SHTF is to keep low profile, by giving food to the folks you are definitely not keeping low profile, you are saying to them “I have more of this home” and at the end people want more from you, and in the world without law they will try to take from you.
If you already want to give some food, then do that like you are trading it for something, even you do not need that, for whatever.
Jus to not make it like gift or charity, do not make it look like you can spare it.March 29, 2014 at 8:42 pm #5159
These are some great ideas! I had thought that if I give something extra that I might have, to a neighbor and the neighbor’s neighbor hears about it, then I am in trouble. As this multiplies, you can get in a lot of hot water, so to speak. So your idea of trading is a good one. However, how do you disguise the fact that you have something in the first place? I would think that someone who has a gun won’t need to have something to trade. All he needs to know is that you have something in the first place. How do you deal with that?March 29, 2014 at 9:08 pm #5173
So we could postulate the idea that ‘people in need get nothing for free’ this could be a thread all of its own on ‘rules when there are no rules’…April 1, 2014 at 8:39 pm #6196
Sorry again for taking a few days to get back to you.
Granted, my situation was a bit different than most. People knew you had stuff–they just didn’t know how much or what exactly. The same principle applies. Everyone needs stuff to survive. Someone, somewhere, will value what you have even if it doesn’t have great value in your eyes.
Honor among thieves is a strange, but very real concept. For the most part, no one ripped people off in a trade because they knew they’d get the s#$% kicked out of them–literally. One guy tried, and that’s exactly what happened. Afterwards, no one dealt with him, and if he was hungry…oh well. No one associated with a thief because they knew they were fair game if they did.
Regarding the gun situation…I strongly recommend getting practical self-defense training from a well-regarded instructor. Of course, if you can own a gun, that is a great deterrent as well.
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