#40 Develop an immunity to dioxins

September 16, 2010

dioxin breath

Love Canal in winter

When the cataclysm hits and everything in your ‘hood burns to charcoal, a whole lot of what burns will be plastic. The bad news is that many types of plastics, when they burn, they release a whole lot of something called “dioxins.”

The American Chemistry Council explains that

The term “dioxin” refers to a large family of compounds that includes 17 compounds of particular interest because it is thought that these compounds have similar mechanisms of toxicity.

The World Health Organization describes the health risks of dioxins this way:

Dioxins are environmental pollutants. They have the dubious distinction of belonging to the “dirty dozen” – a group of dangerous chemicals known as persistent organic pollutants. Dioxins are of concern because of their highly toxic potential. Experiments have shown they affect a number of organs and systems.

Dioxins made up just some of the many chemicals buried by the Hooker Chemical and Plastics Corporation over a number of years in the Love Canal in upstate New York. Leaks from those chemicals caused significant health problems for local residents, eventually becoming one of the most notorious environmental disasters in the US.

Cigarette smoke contains dioxins, but not nearly enough to prepare you for the cataclysm.

To survive the cataclysm, get your lungs ready to breathe some seriously dioxin-laced smoke.


Are you ready?

March 8, 2009

They’re the government, and they’re here to help:

Ready.gov

ready_gov1

photo by jjsala


#39 How will you recognize the cataclysm when you see it?

March 5, 2009

A worried reader recently asked me, Exactly how do you define “cataclysm?” How will I know one when I see one?

Good question. You don’t want to pull out your cataclysm kit and run for the hills if you only have a disaster on your hands, not a full-fledged cataclysm.

It may help to think of a cataclysm as part of a continuum of troubles that runs from everyday trials and tribulations to an outright nobody-but-the cockroaches-survive apocalypse.

Cataclysm ContinuumIn between, you have your misadventure, disaster and your cataclysm.

Think of it in terms of survival. Most people will survive their tribulations (bad hair day) and the ordinary misadventure (US Air Flight 1549). In this day and age most people even survive a disaster. A cataclysm, not so much.

But the best-stocked cataclysm survival kit won’t help you in the case of the apocalypse.

Next time something bad befalls you, or you read about some crisis or other in the news, try to place it on this continuum. As you do it more and more, you’ll start to get the hang of things.

When the cataclysm comes, you’ll recognize it for what it is. You’ll be fit and ready with your skills and stockpiles while everyone else is still twittering on about their very bad day.


Cooking after the cataclysm

February 20, 2009

If your favorite cookbook doesn’t include instructions on how to dress and cook a squirrel, it’s not going to be much use after the global climate change cataclysm.

You’re going to need older cookbooks, with recipes based on local ingredients.

Listen here, or read post #35 Buy an old cookbook.

Right click here to download the mp3.

[El Wala Wala (Hey Dude) by Hakim]


#38 Blend in

February 7, 2009

When the cataclysm hits and marauding bands of your unprepared neighbors tear through the ‘hood looking for a bite to eat and some fresh water, your ability to stand out in a crowd will be definite disadvantage.

Note how this wily crayon cleverly blends into its surroundings

Note how this wily crayon cleverly blends into its surroundings

You’ve cultivated your own personal style and developed strategies to draw attention to how you are completely unique in the world. That’s the American way, after all – rugged individualism in the search engine optimized era.

After the global climate change cataclysm, though, you won’t want to show up on your hungry neighbors’ armed analog equivalent of a Google search for “local food.”

To the contrary, you’ll want to blend in and not be noticed. You’ll want people to pass you right by without seeing your well-stocked cataclysm kit.

Get started now. Start taking note of those background people in your life. You know – the invisible ones you don’t usually see. Study their habits of dress, behavior and driving habits.  They have a lot to teach, and you have a lot of bad habits to lose if you’re going to go unnoticed and survive after the cataclysm.

Crayon photo by EJP. Click to see more camoflaged crayons.


Wake Up, Freak Out – then Get a Grip

January 31, 2009

WordPress won’t let me embed this very cool video on feedback loops and climate change, so you’ll have to click over to see it. I recommend it highly:

Wake Up, Freak Out – then Get a Grip

by Leo Murray

It’s much, much later than you think.

Read more here.


Ebola: Coming to a temperate zone near you

December 31, 2008

The Wildlife Conservation Society has identified twelve relatively uncommon diseases that are likely to become much more widespread after the global climate change cataclysm. Listen here to learn more:

To download the mp3, right click here.

Or click here to read tip #34: Diversify your immune system.

[No Fun by Iggy Pop and the Stooges]


Top 10 natural disasters in a most disastrous year

December 29, 2008
top-10-natural-catastrophes-2008

Hurricanes and cyclones killed nearly 85,000 people this year

More than 220,000 people died in 2008 as a result of natural disasters, making it one of the deadliest and costliest disaster years in history. This was also the 10th warmest year since records began in 1850.

If you won’t listen to me when I tell you to get ready for the coming global climate change cataclysm, will you at least listen to your insurance company?

The world’s second largest insurer, Munich Re, blames climate change for the disasters. They’ve compiled this list of the Top 10 Natural Catastrophes for the year.

With billions of dollars worth of losses on the line, Munich Re is preparing for the cataclysm both within their business and in the global political debate:

“We – as a company – press for effective and binding rules on CO2 emissions, so that climate change is curbed and future generations do not have to live with weather scenarios that are difficult to control.”

They’ll do it for money. Will do it to save your life?


#37 Learn to talk to people face-to-face

December 28, 2008

Apparently, a whole generation of people is growing up unable to carry on a conversation with another human being face-to-face. They’re so used to email and texting with their friends, they’d rather do that than actually see them in real life.

The Onion

Source: The Onion

Great if we want to reduce the spread of communicable diseases. Not so good for after the global climate change cataclysm, when batteries run dry and the electrical grid collapses.

Imagine, you’re going though life just texting along, when your iPhone suddenly goes dead. You realize the last time you plugged it in, it didn’t actually juice up. You look up from the phone, only to discover the water has already risen up to your knees. What do you do?

You can’t start emailing or texting for help. You’ll have to shout. I know it sounds frightening, but you will have to talk to the people around you. They may be family, friends or even strangers. If you don’t know how to carry on a verbal conversation with the people who planned ahead for the cataclysm, you’ll have a lot of trouble getting them to row you to safety or share their freeze-dried Brunswick stew with you.

Practice now. Put down that phone or PDA and talk to someone. You may find it less efficient than email. It will require more words, and you may have to talk about things that aren’t on the topic you started with. You’ll have to use entire words. Then again, you may be surprised to find out it takes less time to say “by the way” than it does to say the letters “BTW.”

smileyYou’ll also need to make facial expressions and hand gestures appropriate to the content of your words. To do this, imagine the kind of emoticon you might use with certain statements, and try to make your face look like that. Many people of the older generation learned this as children, and may be able to help you.

Start talking now, lest you find yourself texting underwater.


Happy 60th to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

December 8, 2008

Universal Declaration of Human RightsThis Wednesday, Dec 10, marks the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. If you’ve never read it, you should. It’s an impressive document.

If nation-states should collapse after the global climate change cataclysm, we can just fall back on these rules.

Here it is, in English. To read it in your preferred language, click here.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948.

PREAMBLE

Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,

Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,

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