There will be some good to come of Y2K yet, I just know it. : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

So, lots of extra food and water out there huh? People have stacks of TP, crates of bottled water, tons of perishables, and scads of funky devices you never knew you needed (or knew existed until someone tried to sell you one). Yep, Lots of extra goodies to tide you over for the Apocalyspe.

But what if the unthinkable happens? What will happen if it doesn't arrive on time? What happens to you when you have a house full of stuff, and Business as Usual continues as usual? ( It IS a plausible possibility ya know).

Are you REALLY going to eat boiled rice and beans over a steak at the Sizzler? Are you actually going to drink all that disgusting plastic tasting waster? Are you truly going to light your house with kerosene when the electricity is on?

Has anybody stopped to do the math on how much YOU STAND TO LOSE by buying your supplies years in advance? I can see it now... a guy goes out and buys ten years worth of batteries, thinking to himself what a sharp fellow he is because when the lights are off, he'll be celebrating in style, listening to the juke box, and playing his Game Boy well into the year 2010. But then the apocalypse DOESN'T arrive, and Joe Schmo is stuck with ten years worth of batteries. Batteries that normally have a shelf life of about three years. He has two choices... try to use them all up before they die, or give them away. Either way he is a loser, because NOBDOY in their right mind is going to try to use batteries up for the hell of it. DOH! DOH DOH!! Kind of like a scene from the comic strip "Born Loser".

I don't know about everyone getting a warm and fuzzy global feeling around january 1, 2000, but there IS some good that is going to be coming from all this. People all over the world wil realize how pointless it is to try to prepare for everyting life has to offer for months and years in advance. They will suddenly have a striking epiphany; that for the average family stockpiling for anything more than a few weeks at a time is very inefficient, no matter how many boogie men people like North and Yourdon try to scare you with.

-- (zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999


We (as a family), recognize that some of the items that we have acquired are non-refundable items. And since this particular challenge is being taken as a reasonable and serious precaution, we realize that if (in the best of all worlds) nothing happens, we will be eating some very interesting things over the next year that we might not normally plan on. Not being wealthy, we can't affort to waste. So we figure that 80% of what we have purchased for our Y2k preps can be redeemed somehow (via usage) over the next year. Not bad, compared to what may happen.

-- thomas saul (, October 28, 1999.

Zoltar, it sounds like you are either a shill, or a DWGI who is upset that we GIs might be right. Somebody, please tell find the thread on the Y2K version of Pascal's wager to educate this guy (presuming he is sincere). Preparers for Y2K are making only the rational choice among those it offers. Lastly, I figure that over 80% of the money that my family and I have spent on preps this year will not be wasted if zippo were to happen at the end of the year. Gold, guns, tools, first aid supplies, dried food that we eat anyway, salt we can throw on the driveway in winter -- these items will not magically lose their value if Y2K stands revealed as a sub-two next year. It's really quite simple, at least for people approaching this whole subject logically, as opposed to exhibiting an emotionally-based negative response to the very concept that any privation might be in their future.

my website: (several new items just went up on it last night)

-- MinnesotaSmith (, October 28, 1999.


Sounds good in theory, doesn't it?

Oh, who was it who said..."the best laid plans of mice and men often go astray".

Maybe in two years you can do an audit for us all and explain just how savy it was to buy all sorts of stuff and let it sit around for extended periods of time.

I've seen a bag of cement go bad under what seemed like perfect conditions. Now I'm no scientist, but I am going to guess that most stuff is not as stable as a bag of cement.

Happy trails, enjoy that stale food, etc.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Hey Zoltar...

Have you ever heard of a flea market?

-- Patrick (, October 28, 1999.

To clarify:

The bag of cement hardened becasue it absorbed tiny amounts of moisture from what seemd like dry air.

I wish I didn't have to explain what it means when a bag of cement goes bad but you never know who is reading. I wanted to make that clear before someone says somthing silly by misunderstanding what I meant.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Hey Patrick,

I have... are you going to let me know what your point is or should I just try and guess?(Shakes head wondering what flea markets have to with shelf life...)

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

All i can say to all that is what did Noah do with all that wood when the flood didnt come and the boat was out in the middle of nowhere. No water in sight. Poor Noah there were not even flea markets then.

Sorry all but in my 59 years of life I figure I have lost more money on bad decisions and those that took me for a ride so this time I took control and spent some for a few necessary things. No I didn't buy the beans and junk but good food I eat about three times a week or so. I am a vegitarian so no problem with meat. I bought a solar oven so i can bake bread and buscuits and such. Funny thing I am using it now and the power I save is helping my budget. I did buy at a pottery store two oil lamps and a doz bottles of fuel that cost me less than 20 bucks. I also bought three flashlights to have light as I move around the house in the dark. If not dark I only paid less than a dollar for the flashlights and the batteries on sale. (Overstock in home depot after huricane didnt strike)

All in all I fail to see why people who prepare are looked down on. It was my money I spent. It wasnt ear marked for anything and being a female I would have spent it on clothes which I do not need in Florida. So those of you who complain about our feeling for preparation dont worry. We will not wreck the economy or cause you any discomfort.

Love and peace to you all Susan

-- Susan E. Barrett (, October 28, 1999.

I had a zoltar go bad on the shelf after only 2 hours one time!!!

-- Porky (Porky@in.cellblockD), October 28, 1999.


No one knows for certain the end from the beginning of any major public concern. On Y2K, any opinion or forecast is a guess, an informed one hopefully, but a guess nonetheless.

Life is filled with risk and surprising outcomes. That is why we pay insurance premiums to cover improbable, but not impossible surprises that can damage our health, homes, cars, and businesses. Every such situation requires a personal assessment. Should your car insurance include a collision rider? If not, you can reduce your current out-of- pocket expense. How risk averse are you?

Right now, people are attempting to assess Y2K risk.


-- Linkmeister (, October 28, 1999.

Susan, I have no doubt that you won't cause me any discomfort, but please don't speak for the rest of the world, they are just too unpredictable.

Now at any point did I look down upon "preparing"?. Nope.

I just said that stockpiling for months/years in advance is inefficient. I'm not talking about stockpiling marbles or coins, I mean things that have a shelf life, which is damn near everything we buy at the grocery store. I bet that if you left a tube of toothpaste in it's box, in room temperature, for three years and then came back toopn it up and use it, I would have to imagine that it's going to taste pretty sick.

So... it's 1/1/00 + three years. Someone out there has a tube of toothpaste they bought for Y2K, and hasn't looked at it since because stores are still selling nice fresh tubes of toothpaste all over the place.

Mucho inefficient.

Some things last a little while on the shelf, some things longer. But the point is unless you store your stuff in a vacumn, in a box of lead, at the perfect temperature for each individual item, with no possibility of ever being touched, you are going to have some old, moldy, broken down, rusted, non-functioning stuff.

So for all you people out there with lots of stuff in your stockpile , I bet you are thinking to yourself right now, "gee, I hope I am right about Y2K".

And that is just not right to be hoping for a thing like that for your own personal reasons, ala Gary North.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Porky, I don't envy the man who consistantly references prison in a good way.

ta ta

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Hey listen babar, do not presume to know what people are thinking due to your own preconceived notions.

-- Porky (Porky@in.cellblockD), October 28, 1999.

Zoltar the arrogant,

Why do people such as yourself constantly come here and try to show how f%$*ing all-knowing you are? Let's see, you've prepared for exactly (fill-in-the-blank) days, ergo, all other degrees of preparation denote stupidity on the part of the persons preparing. Where do I get my crystal ball like the one you obviously are getting your info from? If I want to buy a case of toothpaste and a Sherman tank, what concern is it of yours?

I've already figured out what I'll do with all my extra "stuff" if I don't need it. I say that, because unlike you, I'm not exactly sure how bad this thing will be. I may not need all of it. But are you really certain YOU won't have a "striking epiphany" when you're wiping your ass with your hand because you ran out of buttwipe in the bunker?

-- cavscout (humble@my.bunker), October 28, 1999.

I DID NOT say STUPID, I said inefficient.

What's the problem, are you feeling stupid?

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Thinking it over, I see what you meant. You seem to think that I mean inefficiency is stupid. Not so.

Inefficient is inefficient. If any of you say, "well, what is wrong with a little inefficiency?", I say: "Well, what is wrong with a little pollution?".

Just so long as it's a little, it's okay.

That seems to be the thinking, I could be wrong. But inefficeincy is a BAD thing, hence the fancy little greek prefix in-. Pollution is a bad thing no matter how small.

If you like being inefficient, fine, do your worst. But if you think you are going to convince anyone that inefficiency is GOOD then you might as well try selling ketchup sandwiches to a lady in a white dress.

The point of the original post was how inefficient it is to stockpile for VERY extended periods of time... i.e: months (plural), years, decades, etc. Maybe I should say more than three months but there is a plethora of things that don't have a shelf life of three months so I thought I'd just leave it at month(s).

Again, not stupid, inefficient.

Got a problem with that? Well then it's very nice to meet you, because I don't think I've ever met a human who would argue in favor of inefficiency.

-- (Zoltar@the.wiseass), October 28, 1999.

Dear Sir Zoltar, a sensible plan regarding stockpiled supplies is to use some of the stockpile as you go. If the first part of the year produces no need for my supplies, I will donate the oldest items, cans about 18 mos old, to the food pantries nearby and use some of it at our church for our regular church dinners. But if I do waste some money and some food, that is the price I pay for wanting to protect my family. Inefficient? Possibly? What would it be if my family didn't have food to eat because I chose to be more efficient? Irresponsible? Certainly. I won't worry about your "efficiency," and you are welcome not to worry about my "inefficiency."

-- Kurt Ayau (, October 28, 1999.


Just so you'll know..... I have always....ALWAYS stocked up. I am a stocker-uper. The apodeme of a squirrel.

Alot of people (you) think things just turn to mush after a few months on the shelf. I have to tell you..... you are wrong.

Toothpaist does not get stale after a year. I know I buy it on sale and it is fine up to 1 1/2 years after purchase.( I cant tell you if it is good up to 2 years, Because I have not tried it.)

Cement does on the other hand. It draws moisture. AKA/ turns into a brick!

If you can correctly.... food will last well over a year. If you buy whole grain (to be ground) for flour, it will last almost forever.

You are wrong sir.

-- bulldog (, October 28, 1999.


You are asking some rather interesting questions...

a) Anything we bought were items we usually buy anyway. Nothing wasted there...

b) A tube of toothpaste does not go bad after three years, trust me been there done that...

c) If nothing happens and I should really have *wasted* or spent say $1,000 inefficiently..? Oh well, It gives me a warm and fuzzy right now, and I have spent more money then that to give me a warm and fuzzy for stupid stuff that I thought *might* be worth something... (Remember the Pet Rock..? Trent Dilfer Rookie Cards, Etc..)

d) IF nothing happens I have maybe used $1,000 inefficiently... IF something happens I starve to death (Again, I rather waste money and be semi-safe)

e) Spoiled food..? That's why you rotate. You buy stuff you normally use in the first place. Take of the shelf and replace next time with fresh stuff from the store. IF you make it a habit you never waste food.

Last but not least... Pointless to prepare for anything....??? Well, I thought the same thing when I bought that goofy fire extinguisher for $20 to put in the car. Damn wasting all that money. But don't tell that to the lady who's car was on fire and was stuck inside. Turns out.. the $20 weren't wasted after all....

-- STFrancis (, October 28, 1999.


That is awesome. Your the type of person who ought to be posting around here. When I read your post I didn't feel scared at all. If more people knew how to prepare correctly then maybe I wouldn't feel compelled to post here. But preparing/stockpiling isn't somthing they teach in High School Home Ec Class.

I just have visions of uninformed people coming to this BB and thinking that they ought to go out and buy a ton of stuff tomorrow and leave it sit in the garage until they find out whether Y2K is going to hit hard or not.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Zoltar the clueless,

You implied being inefficient was stupid. I agree. It's stupid to waste things. On the other hand, if these things come in handy in an emergency situation, then they are not wasted. They may, and then again they may not. Who knows? Certainly not you. No one does, that's my point. But you pretty much glossed over that part of the argument. And secondly, what difference does it make to you? By the way, I'm not feeling stupid, just a tad irritated at folks who think they know more than they really do.........

While we're at it, name me ONE thing that will go bad in less than a year. If it lasts longer that, we are all going to have to do a lot of re-thinking. And don't say toothpaste.

-- cavscout (preparedforwh@t.ever), October 28, 1999.


caveat to the above, add "when properly stored".

-- cavscout (properly@storing.everything), October 28, 1999.


You got me there, the toothpaste example was off the top of my head. Eevn so, leaving anything laying that you put in your body foryears is bound to attract Murphy, if you know what I mean.


Again, I won't act like I know the logistics of toothpaste, but seeing how it's prety much nothing but abrasive paste I guess it shouldn't get too yucky. Bad example.

But truly, how many people who are going to prepare _for Y2K_ are going to really take the time to learn how to do it right? With less than 65 days left to act I see alot of bad decisions made.

If you can do it correctly, okay. It can be done but I want to emphasize the point that when it comes to items we buy frequently the effect of time on them is like your lawn. The longer you let it go the worse it gets. And I firmly believe that Mr. Murphy is reading this right now and making a list of people to visit in the next few months.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.


I really, really didn't mean to imply that inefficient is dumb. It happens to the best of us, when we aren't looking. You just have to stay on top of it or it'll bite you on the butt.

Name one thing that will go bad in less than a year?

Canned Evaporated Milk. Give that stuff about six months and you'll have a whole new defintion of milk.

I post these th9ings here because I feel like it, same as you, and next guy. I have an opinion and I am voicing it. If I was to argue both sides of the issue of whether or not your stockpile is safe from the effects of Time then I'd be a wimp. I have a view about leaving stuff lie around, and it's con. Yours is pro.

And that's what it's all about. We talk, we think, we talk some more, we carry on. Not exactly Romancing The Stone kind of adventure/excitement, but I'm an older gent, leave me my little shreds of fun while I'm still above ground.

-- (Zoltar@the.pretty well clued in), October 28, 1999.

Oh yeah, and those little condiment packages you get from fast food joints,... like mustard, mayo and kecthup? Don't think they are going to last much more than a month or two and still be edible.

I've got experience with that.

I've found that Cambell's soup also does not last as long as you'd guess. Ever try a one and a half year old can of Cream of Broccoli? Yuck!!!!

I haven't done extensive testing on soup cans, but it only takes one tainted bowl of Dinty Moore to kill ya. (Especially if you can't get to the doctors).

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.


You wrote," But truly, how many people who are going to prepare _for Y2K_ are going to really take the time to learn how to do it right? With less than 65 days left to act I see alot of bad decisions made."

My first question is ..... You see alot of bad decisions made? Who are you to say they are bad decisions? Its not your call. Secondly..... I agree with you about the 65 days thing. We have always expected a panic. It will not come as a suprise. Anyone with half of a brain that has known there might be a need to prep, did not wait until this late date to start. Oh, I hope I'm not talking about you.

-- bulldog (, October 28, 1999.

Well, let me ask you this:

If you saw a man walking down a busy interstate, blind folded and drunk, do you think you'd have the right to say that it's a bad decision?

Of course. That doesn't mean you have the right to make him stop though.

Well, I'm here saying that I some the potential for bad decisions being made. I have the right to say so, and the right to tell you to stop.

But I don't have the right to make you stop, nor have I ever tried.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.


Can I ask you a question?

You said you were not a young person..... or something to that effect...I would have to guess that either you did not go through the depression of the 30's ... OR.... you were so wealthy at the time it did not affect you.

My question is ..... Have you prepared for any disterbances? Or are you planning on making your weekly/? trip to the grocery store just like you always have come Jan 1, 2000?

-- bulldog (, October 28, 1999.

everyone in this country has to contend with natural disasters in addition to anything Y2K hands out. Extra food can be donated to the local food bank. water can be consumed, non-perishable supplies will be there. The pony in the pile with Y2K is that people are waking up and taking responsibility for them selves as well as working in community to be prepared, period.

-- Nancy (, October 28, 1999.


I'll be as candid as possible, and risk looking like a fool to the majority of forum goers.

I haven't put anything aside for y2k. I have always, since I was a kid, been taught to keep extra gallons of water around, and I normally shop for two-three weeks at a time. Other than that I don't think I've done anything special. Could I? Maybe I could squirrel away a few pounds of stuff here and there but to tell you the truth it wouldn't make me feel better.

If things got ugly I think I'd just drive up to my nephew's cabin and do the best I can. I am older (50's), so I don't plan on lugging anything around that I can't carry with one arm, as the other one usually holds the cane. But I'm a survivor and I've been in a few touch scrapes where I had to think my way out. I trust my abilities, and it just so happens that I'm not a stockpiling kind of guy. Actually, I think if I've stockpiled anything it would be friendships. They hardly ever go bad and they are alot easier to keep track of than three months worth of stuff. And they have almost as much redeeming value (if not more in some cases) when your down in the dumps.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Big whoop! We've got a little bigger garden, fruit trees that I was going to plant anyway (plus tapioca!), a little more than normal hurricane supplies (I allow for having maximum guests at homw when it hits), and a generator that we need for hurricane preparedness (and other things). We may use kerosine lanterns during power outages (which DO occur), camping, etc. No, I don't feel that we've lost a thing! But we buy what we eat... If I had more money, I'd still only be buying what I expect to use, no matter what happens on or after January 1...

If I lived on the mainland, I'd merely have myself a mountain cabin, as well.

Pointless to prepare? I think not. I've lived through a 1,000 year flood and several 100 year floods. I've seen unemployment, serious blizzards, earthquakes, a hurricane, and even a tsunami. What I've learned is that being prepared pays off...both in actual benefits and in being able to relax. The recent dock strike here in Hawaii was a case in point. The individuals who were prepared were not full of panic and rushing down to the store to buy tp and SPAM. They could continue to go about their business without disruption. That's worth a lot more than the cost of a month's (or even a year's) rations.

-- Mad Monk (, October 28, 1999.


Thank You for your candor, I do not look down on you for your discisions. But because you have given a little more info about "where you are coming from" I will tell you a little about myself.

I have 3 children under the age of 8. They are my life, my joy, and my responsability. You have yourself. If you choose not to prepare, you only have yourself answer to. I will have three children looking at me. They depend on adults to care for them.

I have to admit.... if we didnt have children, I would have done things differently. My spouse and I would have bought a little cabin in the woods and lived like over sexed raccoons. But as that was not an option.... we bought another beef cow, more chickens, a extra ton of corn, some non-hybrid seed.... and we were off.

I have a different opinion of you. You are not as I thought. I now relize that you just dont have the responsibilies I do. Many people that read this forum do have responsibilities aslo. You do what you have to and I will do what makes me sleep alittle better tonight.

I have a feeling that you will be with your relatives next year....hoping that they thought of thier responsibilities. If you are not part of the answer than you are part of the problem.

I have my home open to any of my relatives. But we have a standing rule. You may come only if you have 6 months food with you.

We plan.... They plan.

-- bulldog (, October 28, 1999.

Generally, I try to avoid answering obvious trolls (please, Zoltar, don't offend us by denying it)....

But, I know a thing or two about food storage and preservation.

Canned evaporated milk remains almost unchanged for AT LEAST three years -- I know, because I just opened two cans yesterday that I had hand-dated in 10/96, and they were in excellent condition. We used them in coffee in lieu of the half &half we usually use, since we'd run out. Town, you see, is an hour drive away so it isn't practical to run in for every little thing.

Home canned saurkraut, 5 years -- opened two quarts last week. Really nice flavor, too.

Canned coffee....indefinite. Found a can that was 11 years old down in the basement. Opened it last summer. No change that I was aware of. I think the can might be a "collectible", too.

Ditto canned Hershey's cocoa powder -- can I opened was given to me in 1987 by a man who inherited it from his deceased father's estate. Dad had put that cocoa away in was STILL GOOD in 1987! (That cannister WAS a collectible, by the way, and I sold it.)

Canned fruit, specifically apricots. Aldi's brand, four years old -- fine, no noticeable change.

Liquid clothes detergent -- 4 years. No change in cleaning capability.

DRY clothes detergent, 2 years old....had apparently attracted moisture and formed into a concretion. However, we broke it up with a hammer, and it dissolved and cleaned clothing just as good as new.

In 1985, we found four quarts of canned corn and canned green beans in our barn. The last people had lived at the house two years previously -- and the last people who had canned food lived their TEN years these canned veggies were probably 12 years old. Not only were they in excellent condition, our chickens and pigs thought they were great (no illness or food poisoning.)

I have 7 quarts of rabbit meat that I canned in 1995. I'm still waiting for an occasion to use them. They are in good condition and look the same as when I canned them.

The canning process inactivates the enzymes and bacteria that contribute to changes in food over time. If the food has been properly preserved, it should change very little after being canned -- and, could conceivably last a decade.

Anybody remember that the whole idea of "expiration dates" is a relatively new concept, maybe only 15 years old? White sugar doesn't age, and rarely attracts insects (they can't live on it); I've got self-packed 5-gallon buckets of plain white flour that I put up in bugs, no problems, no changes.

So, please, Zoltar, cut the crud. The problem you've got with this forum isn't the storage life of foods -- it's what storing food means.

Anita Evangelista

-- Anita Evangelista (, October 28, 1999.

Zoltar: I would like to address two points of yours. First, your main one, that it is inefficient to store more than a few months (weeks?) worth of food and supplies. Tell that to the Mormons. They are required to keep 1-2 years of food and supplies on hand at all times. Which is not to say they ALL do it, but a majority do. Which brings me to my second point: you say with less than 65 days left, there is not enough time to learn to properly store and use stored food and supplies. Well, that is why, in January of 1998, when my husband and I first understood the scope and depth of this potentially very big problem, we undertook the HUGE task of learning things we never felt it necessary to learn: choosing the right foods for long-term storage, how to store and use properly (canning, dehydrating, freezing, smoking and curing, as in the case of beef jerkey, etc.) etc. I have spent almost the last two years of my life learning more about domestic arts than my grandmother, who grew up in the 30's and 40's ever had to know. I have learned how to make my own soap and candles for crying out loud. And I do it, as well!

I can't begin to tell you how many books we have bought/checked out from the library that we have read cover to cover and cover to cover again on this subject (and many more).

I don't even understand why this is such a big topic for you. Seems like a no-brainer to me. Anyone who decides to start preparing now by buying a whole bunch of stuff isn't in much trouble, either. If we are going to see problems, it will not be happening in 2001 or 2002. Most shelf-stable foods are good for quite some time. They may lose some nutritional value and have a compromised taste after a long period of time but they will still be enough to keep you alive.

So what's the big deal?

-- preparing (, October 28, 1999.

zoltar- When you are able to sit down and write an elaborate explanation of why insurance is inefficient, please come back and see us. You may never wreck your car, and your house may never catch fire. Explain the difference here. And if you think the laws of probability apply just let me tell you that when I lived in NYC approx 1986, there was an earthquake. 5.something as I recall, who'd a thunk it?

-- Gia (, October 28, 1999.


I paid for life insurance last year and I didn't die and I don't feel stupid for having purchased it. Likewise with my auto insurance. At least with my Y2K preps I can eat the premiums. Will I eat it all?? Probably not all the rice and beans (which will find their way to a homeless shelter if unused). Everything else however, we do and will eat. So really, I stand to lose very little...


-- TECH32 (TECH32@NOMAIL.COM), October 28, 1999.

Zoltar, and what are YOU going to do if you need the Preps? My Morman neighbor has been stockpiling forever and he rotates and uses each years stocks--For my part my milk is dry and vacume packed as are all my other bulks. should last long enough to watch a few wise asses of your ilke waste away--between gardens,livestock,fruit trees and stored bulks I expect to be able to make two years without gainful employment. How about YOU?

-- y2k is a muchneededvacation (zoltarcrusher@ pretty, October 28, 1999.

Zoltar the pretty-well informed: (I liked that persona a lot better than the jerk who made the initial posting)>

A couple of weeks ago, my wife returned from a trip to our daughter's. As she walked in the door, the lights went out. No problem, we simply got out the oil lamp, lit it up, finished unloading the car, putting stuff away and sat around talking by lamp light. Was the lamp a 'stupid purchase'? How about the extra lamp oil and wicks? By what measure?

We have extra food. As we go to the store, the new stuff goes to the back, the old stuff gets moved forward, when my wife decides we are low on something in the pantry, she goes down and gets some, brings it up, puts it on the shelf and adjusts the inventory. Is the purchase of that food stupid? By what measure?

We had an ice storm where we live last year. The power was out for a time and the street didn't get plowed for a week. Now, I have a four wheel drive, with a fairly high clearance, and I'm not one of those idiots that thinks that does anything for the stopping power of the vehicle. But it sure it sure is a whole lot easier to stay home, with a nice fire in the fireplace, the cats curled up with us, a lamp on the table to read by, and whatever we decide to have for dinner (within reason, obviously, the 'fresh stuff' runs out), than to have to load up and try to get to the store. Were the purchases stupid? Again, by what standard, or measure?

Informed minds want to know.

-- just another (, October 28, 1999.

You know Zoltar does have a point. I've got the capacity to "get by" for about 2 to 3 weeks. I've always stocked ahead, just my upbringing. I thought about doing the 1 year bit, money is not the problem, but changed my mind. If I'm wrong then it's only me who suffers. Those with children most certainly have more responsibility, in more ways than one! :) If it does go south then I'll deal with it. If not I'll just keep on doing what I do now. It works for me. Everyone else can make their own choices, that's how life works.

just watching....

-- Just me (, October 28, 1999.

zoltar said

I just said that stockpiling for months/years in advance is inefficient.

Yes, and its balanced out by the efficiency of storing a year in two digits.

-- a (a@a.a), October 28, 1999.

There is alot to address here , so give me a minute to think, and I'll try not to leave anything out:


That is funny, I opened a can of evaporated milk up the other day and it was horrible, after just 1/2 a year. It's true, I am not lying. I don't think you are either. Just goes to show you that sometimes things go sour, even if something very similar in nature has not. No crud, it's reality. You can rant all day long about how food can be eaten years after it's stored and that's fine. But like I said it's only one can out of a thousand that kills you. People have got this notion in their head that they can put food into a can and it lasts forever. No it's NOT the notion of storing food, it's how it's done, like I said all along. I mean, has the possiblity that people who don't have as much experience with storing food can screw it up ever cross your mind? Just because a hundred cans of evaporated milk last three years intact means a hundred more will? Poppycock. (And by the way, since you are so knowledgeable, can you tell us all what the nutritional content of food that has been sitting around for three years might be? Just a few examples... fruits, dairy, meats, etc.)


The big deal? Food goes bad. Metal goes bad. Plastic goes bad. You can't quantify when it will go bad by the label they put on the side of it. And I recall saying that months is inefficient. And I am right on many counts I imagine, just as Anita is right on many counts. What I wonder about is why some people deny the danger of storing stuff for longer than it was intended to be stored?


I don't have to write an elaborate essay. I paid out about 30k in car insurance over twelve years (I have a bad record), for a car that isn't worth five grand. And how many claims did I file in those twelve years? Zero...

Inefficient? I'm going to have to give a big Yes on that issue.


Unfortunately this conversation got into insurance somehow. I said stockpiling foods for months was inefficient (not stupid). Llet's stay on track.


Mmmmm, okay. Have fun watching people waste away, it sounds like your looking forward to it. (My ilke?)


As I mentioned before, we all have the right to say what we feel. We do not have the right to make others feel as we do. If you do something that makes you feel better and sleep better, than okay, that is a good thing. And if what you do is inefficient people around you might very well tell you so. Big deal. In reality I agree with what you are saying, but I think we differ on other points discussed in this thread that is very much the topic at hand, which we seem to disagree on. Oh well, we disagree. We are adults, we'll get over it.

I wish you luck and best of times for this year and many to come. And IF I should tell you that your being inefficient then say:

"Yep!" :o)

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

I once had a dream, Zoltar, where y2k came and went with no problem, and I was distressed to think I had to eat what I had stored when there was fresh delicious food still to be had. Quite honestly, I probably won't eat it all if I don't have to. We've put a few hundred dollars into preps, family of four for about three months. It was what we could afford. It might be that we "wasted" our money, but when it comes to the possiblities, I consider it an investment. If we don't need it, oh well. It was so worth the piece of mind.

PS..OK TB2000ers, raise your hand if you have 10 years of batteries. Is anyone that crazy???

-- kritter (, October 28, 1999.

just another,

Oil lamps stupid or inefficient? Hardly. Buying enough oil lamps to last you nintey years? Yes a tad inefficient. So is storing fuel in the attic on a hot summer's day, but I betcha someone has done it.

What I worry about (again) is that many people out there are not educated or responsible enough to stockpile safely, which leads to problems and ineffieciency (that word is getting tired, I know). Any fool can buy a lantern and oil for it, and keep it safely stored, and use it wisely. But it takes a really big fool to buy four of them , fill them all to the brim, and leave them scattered about the house. I fear this will be the pattern of scared, anxious, uninformed people in many areas of "preparation".


That is a bit of a reach for the topic at hand don't you think?

I mean, apples, oranges,...

Seperate boxes... okay?

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.


You'll notice that I DO NOT criticize anyone (on this forum) personally for the preps they have made.

But I want to clarify something:

Spending money on the unknown is not an investment, it is a gamble. I really think you guys should use that term when refering to stockpiling supplies for Y2K. Other local natural disasters? Fine, it's common knowledge that stuff will happen sooner or later. But the effects of Y2K has been purely speculation. That is, I mean since it is an undocumented event, there is no proof that it can actually occur.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 28, 1999.

Spending money on the unknown is not an investment, it is a gamble.

Scuse me, but do you buy life or car insurance? I'm not advocating doing such but if you do, that is the same as what you are pointing to as illogical.

Biologically,..some mammels store food for the that the same as preparing for a 3 or 7 or 21 day storm? You have waltzed in here and generated a large response with one posted thread. What are your preparations for winter - large or small?

-- Donna (, October 28, 1999.

I agree with you Zoltar the magnificent!

Just have your checkbook ready, and enjoy the new millenium!!

-- Robert X. Cringely (I'll_say_@nything_.for_money), October 28, 1999.

I posted this at the end of my last response, and the forum elf got it....I think you are doing thread-baiting......

Get honest and talk about your preps, if any.

-- Donna (, October 28, 1999.


I think that when you spend money on the unknown it is a gamble. Insurance is a gamble too... do you buy it or don't you? Once you've bought it it might very well turn out to be an investment if you have an accident. But then again if you drive fifty years, and never have and accident, all the time paying insurance... is it still an investment? ( Not an investment, as in peace of mind... I mean an investment in money).

My meager preps, as I mentioned above, are limited to what I would normally have in my house.


I am sorry if anyone else responds to me tonight expecting an answer, for I am off to sandman land, and won't be posting anymore more today. Maybe I'll check back again tomorrow and post some follow ups, if there should be need for any.

I think above we should remember that this thread was JUST a discussion topic. We think, we talk, and we learn. It's all a learning process and we grow as humans by learning from each other. I hope that lots and lots of new people will post what is on their mind, and don't feel rejected if all you get is negative responses. Believe it or not sometimes your best lessons are learned from your enemies.

Good night all.

-- (Zoltar@the tired. little doggy), October 28, 1999.

Well, Zoltar, I'll just repeat to you a line (from an E-mail) that GN posted yesterday.

"I'm prepared to be wrong about Y2K. Are you?"


-- dave (, October 28, 1999.

BS...spending money on preparations for an emergency is like adding long term safe investments to your portfolio....Life and essential services infrastructure is uncertain, Y2K or not. When will I wake up and say, "Sheesh,...what am I gonna do with all this food?" Answer: never. Are you 23 years old, or what?

I live on the eastern edge of the ring of fire...pacific coast of US....we have lots of seismic activity daily....would you be telling me that my emergency preparations are unimportant?

I don't know why I'm even responding to you....I've dealt with trolls on this board for 18 months....prove that you are not one.

-- Donna (, October 28, 1999.

Well, I for one am glad Zoltar is off to beddie-bye. I'm getting a little tired of the false concern for all those poor goofs out there who do foolish things. Yeah, people store gasoline in trashcans in their basements; people play golf during lightning storms; people drive too fast and drink to excess. People smoke. People buy useless lottery tickets. People shoot heroin with used HIV-infected needles.

But to be "concerned" because someone might be "inefficient"??? Ah, come on! It's pretty pointless for Zoltar to argue with this forum about HIS false images of OUR storage processes -- he has admitted he doesn't store up supplies.....his ideas are pure fantasy, based on zero experience! Ten years of batteries??? Good grief! Zoltar said:

Anita, "That is funny, I opened a can of evaporated milk up the other day and it was horrible, after just 1/2 a year. It's true, I am not lying. I don't think you are either. Just goes to show you that sometimes things go sour, even if something very similar in nature has not. No crud, it's reality. You can rant all day long about how food can be eaten years after it's stored and that's fine. But like I said it's only one can out of a thousand that kills you. People have got this notion in their head that they can put food into a can and it lasts forever. No it's NOT the notion of storing food, it's how it's done, like I said all along. I mean, has the possiblity that people who don't have as much experience with storing food can screw it up ever cross your mind? Just because a hundred cans of evaporated milk last three years intact means a hundred more will? Poppycock. (And by the way, since you are so knowledgeable, can you tell us all what the nutritional content of food that has been sitting around for three years might be? Just a few examples... fruits, dairy, meats, etc.)"

A six month old can of evaporated milk that "was horrible"? Did it "go sour", as you wrote in your following sentence? I find this VERY hard to believe. Canned milk cannot sour as long as the can is sealed -- it's impossible. Souring requires air and specific bacteria -- both of which will be removed by canning.

The only reason something that recently canned would go bad is because it was improperly canned -- COMMERCIALLY improperly canned. Did you get sick from using it? Or did you do what anybody with a modicum of sense would do -- throw it out? Don't you think that most other people have enough sense to throw something noticeably bad out, too?

Commercially canned foods are prepared under conditions that are as safe as modern technology allows -- the fear of lawsuits drives these businesses as much as any other. That's why the annual incidence of deaths from botulism is lower than deaths from lightning strikes.

Can commercially canned food "go bad"? OF COURSE! You may be the only person on this forum, though, who thinks that nobody would notice and dispose of the stuff!

Home canned foods also are quite safe, even when done by beginners. Directions are widely available and free. It's so simple that housewives have been doing it for generations -- there are plenty of people on this forum who were raised with their mamma's home canned something. I'm going to cut you some slack here, since you clearly know next to nothing about home preservation -- and tell you that food that goes bad is obviously bad. To demonstrate how rare this is, try to find some statistics on cases of botulism caused by home canned foods -- they are rare to the point of being non-existent.

Since I am "so knowledgeable", I will assist in your badly needed education. Food, such as meat, fruits, and dairy that have been CANNED change very little in storage. The primary changes take place during the canning process itself; many of these changes replicate the effects of high temperature cooking -- loss of water and heat-soluable vitamins, changes in texture and flavor. After the food has been canned and stored in appropriate conditions (cool and dry), it is largely unchanged, even after three years.

But if you meant the "fruit, dairy, meat" has just been "sitting around" on a shelf for three years -- well, that food will have turned into compost. It's nutritional value will be a little better than dirt.

But let's look once again (and pointlessly) at your "arguments":

(1)"People have got this notion in their head that they can put food into a can and it lasts forever."

NOBODY HAS SAID THIS. Not on this forum or any other. You don't have to worry about this here. Maybe you're thinking of some other "people"?

(2) "I mean, has the possiblity that people who don't have as much experience with storing food can screw it up ever cross your mind?"

Uh, golly, can they screw up? Duh - sure. Just like an airline pilot can screw up and crash into a mountainside. So? It's a lot easier to throw out a blown can of greenbeans than pull a commercial jet out of a steep decline.

(3)"Just because a hundred cans of evaporated milk last three years intact means a hundred more will? Poppycock."

Uh, gee, maybe if a 100 cans last 3 years, it's pretty good evidence that a canned good can easily last 3 years. It sure doesn't support the idea that a hundred more are sure to go bad. There is something badly missing in your logic here..... That makes you a troll, buddy, and I don't need any more of it.

-- Anita Evangelista (, October 28, 1999.

I still do not understand why the undies are all in a wad over THIS. Yes, Zoltar, point conceded (by me,anyway) that you COULD come upon a can that has somehow been compromised and caused the food inside to be bad, thus making the person eating it anywhere from mildly ill to dead.

But ya know what? You are taking that chance EVERY time you open a can of food, no matter what!!! Do you think no one has ever gotten a good case of botulism from a can they had in their pantry for two months? It has happened. That is why you check cans carefully for any kind of dents or swelling. That is not a foolproof way, but sheesh, do you x-ray every can before you open it or what?

This point being established makes your original point MOOT. If it is inefficient to store foods for long periods simply b/c of the danger of eating food gone bad, then it is inefficient (really a better word would be unsafe) to eat food from cans at all. Which is silly.

Zoltar, if Y2K is anything above a 3, I will take my chances on that can of Dinty Moore Beef Stew that I bought 8 months ago, especially if it is all I have to eat! And if Y2K is nothing, which I sincerely truly hope, the hubby and I will simply keep on living as we are living: rotating the stock out of the pantry and food closet and replacing as needed. It is a nice feeling, kind of like knowing if an uninsured driver hits me I have insurance for that, or if I hit someone I have insurance, or if my husband dies (God forbid), myself and our daughter will not become indigent. SAME FEELING.

Here's the flip side of your theory: how efficient is it for people to keep on throwing their hard earned dollars away on high-tech stuff that gets replaced by some other model or some such? Ever seen how much STUFF people have that they don't even use? My 15 year old brother lost his Game Boy (hand-held video game) for a few months-- found it behind the couch and remarked that he didn't even realize it was missing. Just received it in January as a birthday gift and with all the gadgets on it (color, printer attached, magnifying screen, games for it) it put my parents back a couple hundred bucks. THAT to me is inefficient!!!

I know your concern here seems to be safety, but why are you so worried about this? You have made no preps and don't seem to have any problem with people who HAVE prepped except that you seem extremely concerned that we will die of botulism if things are bad or have blown a lot of money if nothing happens. This is so weird. There are such big things to "spend" your worry on....check out the rest of this forum.

-- preparing (, October 28, 1999.

Also, Anita would be too modest to bring this up, but I will. She has written a book called How To Develop a Low-Cost Family Food- Storage System (don't know how to underline) that is very good and could be quite helpful to you if you are soooooo concerned about all us goofuses eating our icky canned food.

Also of course, there is the classic Making the Best of Basics by James Talmadge Stevens.

The only good thing to come out of this thread was that I realize that Anita Evangelista is here. Didn't know you were! I was reading How to Live Without Electricity again the other night to refresh my memory since we are having our drill (off the grid completely) the second week of November. Should be interesting.

-- preparing (, October 28, 1999.

So, do you pay car insurance? Fire insurance on your house? Got insurance at your business? Life insurance?

Insurance aside, we'll never go back to JIT buying...costs too much. People buy stuff to get the emotional hit of aquiring... better to wean ourselves of this habit/addiction and take the whole process of our daily necessities back into our hands and God's.

-- seraphima (, October 29, 1999.

Kritter, did you see me raise my left hand?

-- Randolph (, October 29, 1999.

Like I said, Zoltar the arrogant.....

Well, you came in here with attitude and got pretty well flamed. Go back and re-read your original post and you'll see why (maybe). Sit out the rollover with what you've got in the house, and so will I. And remember, after your 6 rolls of buttwipe are gone, eat only with your right hand Sahib, not the left; never the left.......

-- cavscout (inefficiently@stock.piling), October 29, 1999.

You know, coming back all freash and rested, I can see that you guys are the only ones getting upset by this. My posts are calm and rational, unlike Anita's who says that canned evaporated milk CANNOT go bad, no way, uh huh.

Very humorous, but still somehow sadly pathetic.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 29, 1999.


By the way, if I ran out of TP, why couldn't I use a towel, or a sponge or something? How come you automatically think that the default in a situation like that is act like an animal?

I think because you have a very low opinion of humans in general. Why is a mystery and better left to be analyzed by professionals.

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 29, 1999.

Zoltar, you gave us a clue to your rationale when you said that if things go bad, unprepared you will just go to your nephew's house and live off him!!! And what will he feed you if things go bad? And will he wish to feed you if he has to take it from his immediate family because you didn't prepare?

On this forum those who are preparing have zero tolerance for those who refuse to do so and then say they will live off others if times get tough. That is not only irresponsible, it is selfish in the extreme and pretty presumptuous. Lots of us have had others say to us, "I'll know where to go if Y2K is really bad," and it is infuriating.

-- Elaine Seavey (, October 29, 1999.

                                          | this one is Zoltar the 
idiot standing in line for something.

Have a nice day, simpleton.

-- lisa (, October 29, 1999.


I said I'd go to his cabin, not live off him. He wouldn't even be there, but you made assumptions.


All I can say is wow. Did you come up with all by your little self, or did you have someone help you with the wording?

-- (Zoltar@the.wise), October 29, 1999.

No, JIT came up with it. I'm just trying to illustrate the concept for you, feeb.

-- lisa (, October 29, 1999.

I guess the insurance point has been made here. Most people spend tens of thousands of dollars in their lifetimes on insurance, and get very little, if any of it back.

Besides, why do you care what I spend my money on? What business is it of yours?

Tick... Tock... <:00=

-- Sysman (, October 29, 1999.


What business is it of yours to be asking what business it is of mine?



I knew you weren't that talented.

-- (zoltar@the.wise), October 29, 1999.

I love troll-trapping.

60-something days left, get your stuff while you can.

-- lisa (, October 29, 1999.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

raise your hand if you have 10 years of batteries. Is anyone that crazy???

Dancr's hand goes up. Me! Yep. I chose four heavy duty Trojan L-16 deepcharge marine batteries because they have the longer 10-year life span. I'm hoping to get four more. This will depend upon timely delivery of my solar panels. Here's me hoping more batteries will still be available at that time.

As for the canned milk... did you just drink it straight out of the can? ROFL! That stuff is rank tasting on day one. Use it in cooking. Even if it has a high plop factor it won't hurt you.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), October 29, 1999.

Zoltar doesn't understand the basic premise that with only 2 months to go there is only so much trouble one can get into. There are fewer and fewer options available as to how to prepare. Also, those stocking up now do not have the storage issues that those of us working on this problem a year ago had. Just buy the types of nonperishables you would normally buy, store them in a cool, dry place, and you should be all set.

And the idea of "inefficient" is one of the most condescending comments I have seen on this board. My first step towards stockpiling was to join a wholesale club. I also now select heavily from those items on steep sale at the grocers that I expect to use within some reasonable time. I have no doubts that any irretrievable Y2K costs (if problems are not so severe) will be more than offset by the savings I have enjoyed by my new buying style. Very "efficient" of me, IMHO.

I would also be overjoyed if the average family WERE stockpiling for a few weeks.

-- Brooks (, October 29, 1999.

This "Zoltar" guy's "I know it all" attitude and "I won't change my mind no matter how many facts I'm presented with" stand makes him a classic troll in my book.

-- Ohio Bob (, October 29, 1999.

Ohio Bob, you haven't presented one "fact" so get off your high horse.

And since you seem to know me so well, what is on my mind?

Your answer should be chocked full of assumptions and insults, if you are true to your form.

-- (_@_._), October 29, 1999.

OK, sorry zoltie, you go ahead and use that same rag and wash it in the sink, for as long as your soap and water hold out. I'll be living a comfortable life, relative to all of you "smarter" pollies. And your right, psychoanalysis should be left to the experts, so why are you trying to read me?

-- cavscout (tired@of.trolls), October 29, 1999.

I didn't!

I was the one who said the psychoanalysis should be left to the experts, not you skipper. I said what I thought about you. I am entitled to that much. But I can at least be nice about it, in a mildly offensive way.

And are you SO SURE of the future that you can say things like "I'll be living a comfortable life, relative to all of you "smarter" pollies". I mean damn guy, you want to get thrown in the False Prophets bin in three months from now at the funny farm like Art Bell and notable Doomers who failed in their predictions like Yourdon and Hyatt?

I always thought people who tried to predict the future lack a great deal of foresight.

-- (_@_._@(&*), October 29, 1999.

Still on your simple idiot @$$es.

Gonna watch you all night.

-- lisa (, October 29, 1999.


See, that's the part you just can't grasp; I'm not the one trying to predict the future. I am ready for any contingency. Sure, if it's BITR I get laughed at by trolls like you for a week or two. I think I can take that. If it's a lot worse, I'm still ok. I believe we will have serious problems, but am not absolutely certain how bad.

But you, my precognative friend, only have one more or less as it is now. You have predicted that nothing will happen, and based your decision not to prepare on that that prediction. Either that, or you don't care if you starve. Those are the only two logical explanations for not preparing. Believe me, I hope it is nothing, because I don't want to have to feed people like you. Not because I don't find you charming, but because I just don't have enough food to feed ALL the pollies in my neck of the woods.

-- cavscout (got@T.P?), October 29, 1999.


On your ass?

-- cavscout (who'sw@tching.whom?), October 29, 1999.

Hey, "--@", you are a troll and I don't need to say anything to you, other than, GET LOST CREEP!!!

-- Ohio Bob (, October 30, 1999.

Zoltar IS __@__. Same guy. MAJOR troll and COMPLETE idiot. I would advise discussing nothing with him. He only wants to flame and insult.

BTW, plastic does not GO BAD. The plastic that milk jugs are made of is HDPE or High Density PolyEthylene and DOES leach chemicals into whatever is in it after a year or so. That is why you don't store anything in HDPE! You use TPE which is the plastic 2 liter soda bottles are made of. Or you can use the water barrels (blue) or vinyl water bags. Get a grip.

-- preparing (, October 30, 1999.

From: Y2K, ` la Carte by Dancr (pic), near Monterey, California

I just wrote a little bit on milk cartons at the prep forum.

-- Dancr (addy.available@my.webpage), October 30, 1999.

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