Preparing for Zombie Apocalypse for less than $1,200 in just one weekend

You think that after watching all the wonders of modern warfare fall flat on their high-tech hyper ass, that after watching three months of the Great Panic and watching everything you knew as reality be eaten alive by an enemy that wasn't even supposed to exist that you're gonna keep a cool fucking head and a steady fucking trigger finger?

-World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, by Max Brooks.

Little money?  Big fear?   

You may have already read my ZH article... 

...Guide for Those with Much Money and Very Little Patience Whom Want to Prepare for Zombie Apocalypse But Are Afraid to Google It For Fear of DHS Labeling Them A Terrorist.  There are some unique aspects to this Guide.  First, because it is for Those with Much Money, it assumes you can afford to drop as much as $25,000 and thus save much time by not trying to do things on the cheap.  Second, because it is for Those with...Very Little Patience, it makes no attempt to explain the rationale behind each recommendation.  One can complete the entire Guide within a couple of months, thus allowing you to put this fear out of your mind and move on to much more productive worries, except for fitness.  Regular exercise should really become a habit for the duration of your life.…


Now, let's have some fun discussing how one might get a family of three preparing for TEOTWAWKI and a bug-in scenario for less than $1,200 in just one weekend.

What is the peril?  Like I said in the other article, who knows?  So prepare for Zombies!

Develop a basic mindset.  Here are some ideas.  Commit to prepare for zombies, so that currency collapse, EMP, hurricanes, revolution, world war, or anything else will seem relatively mild.  Understand that the time to make a plan and prepare is before, not after a zombie invasion.  Understand that there is no way you can plan or prepare for every contingency, but doing something today goes a long way to peace of mind, and eliminating any regrets should the shit actually hit the fan.  Realize that everything is likely to cost more next year, if you can get it, so better to buy it now.  Acknowledge that nobody really knows if, what, when, or how anything in the future is going to is all just speculation.  Finally, always remember that, "On a long enough timeline the survival rate for everyone drops to zero," so don't get too worked up, or go into debt, just because of this little exercise in paranoia.

The hardest step is to simply start on a path for getting physically fit.  This may be the most important step, and it will pay dividends even if the Apocolypse doesn't happen during your lifetime.  If you are not yet so fat and lazy that you rely on a "free" government scooter to move about the world, then you may still have hope.

These two professional voters were literally stuck in this gutter.  Pathetic.  What are they going to do?  Call AAA?

Ask yourself...

"Do I have a good pair of shoes that I can put on and walk to the next town without blisters?"

I suggest that you do not buy a new pair of Nikes, or join a health club.  Instead, make your very own pair of huarache sandals using an old tire from the side of the road and a long piece of 1/4" leather lace from Tandy Leather ($12).

Now, start to get yourself in shape so you can run for your life.  Go running, in your sandals, no matter how slowly, four or five times per week.  Stick to trails, for physical and mental health, and avoid the roads and treadmill like The Black Plague.  Work yourself up to 30-minute runs during the week, and then a longer run on the weekends.  After each run, do three sets of as many push-ups as you can do.  I swear almost anybody can do it.  We were all born to run!  When you go see your doctor to ask for permission to get healthy, ask her to find some way to get you off any drugs you allegedly require to survive.  And if you really want to improve your chances of survival, and your kissing, then stop smoking!  

The beautiful mrs_horseman and I have been running and backpacking in our huaraches for more than five years.  We were over 40 when we started.  We cannot imagine, now, filling the arches of our feet with Chinese foam, binding them up in a pair of $150 man-made containment apparati, and blinding our perfectly programmed lower brain to the terrain.  

We also suggest trying one of our house fitness rules: 20 pushups, immediately , whenever someone says the word, "fuck."  It works!

Next, let's talk about shelter.  Your own personal TEOTWAWKI can happen in any moment.  Fix your one-kick doors by replacing the 1/2" screws of your door hinges and hasps with 3" stainless steel deck screws ($13).  

Do not let the zombies just walk in to your home quietly. Replace or convert your exterior doors to a "storeroom function" knob or lever lock.  It look just like regular entry locks. However, there is no button on the inside. Egress is always free, the exterior is always locked, requiring the use of a key to operate the lock every time, because you never want to leave the door unlocked. Some entry locks are designed to allow operation like a storeroom lock when the interior locking button is depressed AND rotated. ($120/lock)

EXHIBIT A:  The convictions were handed down about 18 months after the men broke into a house on East 79th Street, ransacked the home, sexually assaulted resident Eileen Potenza and her adult daughter and left with many of their belongings. The Indianapolis Star typically does not name people who are or may have been victims of sexual assault, but Potenza spoke publicly about the ordeal after the verdicts were handed down.

Not only do we need to account for the insanity of our local youth, but we should also prepare our homes for the insanity of our world leaders.  Buy and store a roll of 10 ft. x 100 ft. Black 4 mil Plastic Sheeting ($32), and aquire a dozen or more surplus blankets from someplace generous like The Salvation Army.  Pick a basement or interior closet or room to be both your survival storage and shelter.  Detailed instructions are found under "shelter" at: 

Radioactive fallout is the particulate matter (dust) produced by a nuclear explosion and carried high up into the air by the mushroom cloud. It drifts on the wind and most of it settles back to earth downwind of the explosion. The heaviest, most dangerous, and most noticeable fallout, typically dark grit, will 'fall out' first closer to ground zero. It may begin arriving minutes after an explosion. The smaller and lighter dust-like particles will typically be arriving hours later, as they drift much farther downwind, often for hundreds of miles. Once it begins to arrive, whether visible or not, all that will fall will usually do so in about an hour, coating everything, just like dust does on the ground and roofs. However, rain can concentrate the fallout into localized 'hot spots' of much more intense radiation with no visible indication.


This radioactive fallout 'dust' is dangerous because it is emitting penetrating radiation energy (similar to x-ray's). This radiation (not the fallout dust) can go right through walls, roofs, windows and clothing. Even if you manage not to inhale or ingest the dust, and keep it off your skin, hair, and clothes, and even if none gets inside your house, the radiation penetrating your home is still extremely dangerous, and can injure or kill you inside.


Radioactive fallout from a nuclear explosion, though very dangerous initially, loses its intensity quickly because it is giving off so much energy. For example, fallout emitting gamma ray radiation at an initial rate over 500 R/hr (fatal with one hour of exposure for 50%) shortly after an explosion, weakens to only 1/10th as strong 7 hours later. Two days later, it's only 1/100th as strong, or as deadly, as it was initially.


That is really very good news, because our families can readily survive it IF we get them into a proper shelter to safely wait it out as it becomes less dangerous with every passing hour.


What reduces radiation, and thus protects your family, is simply putting distance and mass between them and the radiation source. Like police body armor stopping bullets, mass stops (absorbs) radiation. The thicker and heavier the mass, the more radiation it stops, and the more effective it is with every inch more you add to your fallout shelter. The thickness in inches needed to cut the radiation down to only 1/10th of its initial intensity for different common materials is: Steel 3.3", concrete 11", earth 16", water 24", wood 38". The thickness required to stop 99% of the radiation is: 5" of steel, 16" of solid brick or hollow concrete blocks filled with mortar or sand, 2 feet of packed earth or 3 feet if loose, 3 feet of water. (BTW, lead is nothing special, same as anything else pound for pound.) You may not have enough steel available, but anything you do have will have mass and can be used to add to your shielding - it just takes more thickness of lighter wood or books, for example, than heavier earth, to absorb and stop the same amount of radiation. Increasing the distanc

I recommend using five gallon plastic buckets (often found for free in restaurant dumpsters), filled with dirt (free exercise), to create bullet-resistant cover between your position in your shelter and the most likely direction of attack.  

You can wash these scavanged 5 gallon buckets with lids, or buy new ones at Home Depot for about $4 each.  Unlike trash cans, an average person can move a 5 gallon bucket of water...barely.  Fill them with clean water and a little chlorine bleach from the one gallon bottle of Clorox you can get at the store ($5).  Stack the buckets of water and use them to line your shelter.  I want a bare minimum of 20 gallons of water per person.  

A can of soup, condensed milk, or fruit, can be bought on sale for about $1, and does not require preparation or cooking.  Cold soup is better than, "No soup for you!"  I believe these poor-man's MREs last far longer than 5 years, and recommend at least 90 cans per person.  Don't forget the can opener.  

Place the used food cans in an empty water bucket and seal lid.  In a post-apocalyptic world, you do not want to throw trash out where it will attract hungry zombies.

Store toilet paper.  I suggest collecting at least 6 rolls per person while it can still be acquired for free at most public restrooms.  Piss and shit in two different 5 gallon buckets, then seal the lids.  It is best to dump it down a sewer pipe when it gets full, yet many people do not realize that a toilet still works without water.  Simply poor the bucket of urine in the top tank, and it will flush the shit in the toilet down the sewer.

Store tampons, even if you are a man.  You can get a box of 36 for $5, so buy at least three ($15).  This could turn out to be the best investment you ever made.  

 You can dilute some of your bleach in water to make a hand sanitizer.

Buy a new Benelli Nova Tactical Pump-Action 12 gauge shotgun ($400).  There are some places to save money, but this isn't one of them.  Buy at least a case, 250 rounds, of 12-guage 2-3/4" 00 buck shot shells ($125).  

Always follow the firearm safety rules...  

Before handling a firearm, it is most important for EVERYONE in the household to know, understand, and follow these four safety rules:


1) Treat all weapons as if they are loaded.


2) Do not point the weapon at anyone or anything that you do not want to shoot, kill, or destroy.


3) Do not put your finger on the trigger until you have 1) target, 2) sights on target, and 3) perception that either A) "serious bodily injury or death is imminent for myself or another person," or B) firing range is hot and training drill is live. 


4) Be aware of, and take responsibility for, all bystanders that may be behind or near the target.


I add a fifth rule, to the common four, which is to not be under the influence of any mind-altering chemical such as alcohol or dope when handling a firearm.

I absolutely refuse to be within a mile of anyone that I see not following these rules, which is why I generally avoid public gun ranges, and suggest that you shoot at a nice, lonely, high, dirt hill, way out in the boonies, or find a friend or relative to take you as a guest to a private tactical range that screens all members and has at least 270 degree bays.

Again, I cannot stress this point enough, get instruction from an experienced professional.    Trade your family's work, barter, or beg, but do whatever it takes to get some good tactical shotgun training.   If you and your family show honest interest, I believe that many instructors will offer you an option you can afford.  It does not matter whether you are a 10-year veteran of law enforcement, a Marine with two tours in the sandbox, or both, you will still learn much and improve significantly with good instruction.   Taking the state's required, "course," to test for a concealed handgun license (CHL), or having gone bird hunting with Uncle Lester as a kid, is not even close to adequate instruction.   

A good instructor will teach you the safety rules and how to safely and correctly manipulate your shotgun, including operating the safety, loading, unloading, checking if loaded, reloading, managing stoppages, managing squibs, slinging, carrying, shouldering, firing, and possibly even field stripping your gun. It is likely that you will also learn how to hit your target, and be able to do so relatively quickly.  It takes much more practice for you to get the hits when you are under stress, shooting a moving target or multiple targets, lying in your shelter, hiding behind buckets of dirt, it is dark, it is cold, you are being shot at, and your gun is empty... train to feed the beast.

TEOTWAWKI may be lonely and dark.  Buy an iRonsnow Dynamo Emergency Solar Hand Crank Self Powered AM/FM NOAA Weather Radio LED Flashlight Smart Phone Charger Power Bank with Cables ($20).   Go get a library card and always have a stack of good thick books lying around the house, such as the Holy Bible and complete works of William Shakespeare.  Your personal selections may vary.  

Before you start this plan, watch this Twilight Zone episode, The Shelter .

Finally, try to remember the first rule of Fight Club.