At one time in Special Forces, my team was given the mission to parachute into a certain place and conduct covert surveillance on various targets for a minimum of thirty days. The Army, which has acronyms for everything called it SICTA: Strategic Intelligence Collection and Target Acquisition. The plan was to build a ‘hide site’ for two men for each locale and they would do the job.
Sounds simple, right? It is until you try to do it. What we’re all facing now is a version of that. In some ways easier: hopefully you won’t have to be in a hole in the ground. But it’s probably going to last longer than 30 days. So what do you need to know?
1. Don’t wait to be told what to do. You have access to lots of information on the internet. Sort through the sources. Reliable sources have been beating the drum for weeks on isolating, washing hands, getting food for the long term. Pay attention. Do the hard right thing.
2. Act like YOU have the virus and don’t want to give it to others. That’s being empathetic. Which leads us to . . .
3. There are people out there who are mean and don’t give a rat’s ass about anyone else. Hopefully, while isolated, you won’t run into them. But beware. As this drags on we’re going to see a lot of meanness bubble up.
4. People will react differently. An island off the coast of Maine and the Outer Banks of North Carolina have already closed themselves off from outsiders. We’ll see more and more of that. Small towns will blockade themselves. It’s probably too late, as the virus is most likely already there, but fear makes people do things that were unthinkable just a week ago. Just think about a month from now as the infected and death toll rise?
5. Develop new habits. We’ve limited our house to one door in and out; I open the door with my elbow. Inside the door is sanitizer. I use that on my hands. Then go to the kitchen sink and wash my hands. I let the mail accumulate for a few days, then put it in the garage for at least three days before opening. Toss the envelopes in the trash out there. Disinfect, then bring what’s important in. Packages—the same. They go in the garage for three days before being opened.
6. Do something physical. You can find workouts on-line that you do in your one-room apartment. You can go out for walks (law permitting) or bike rides as long as you keep your distance from others. I take Scout to the woods every other day to walk. It’s very rare we even see another person. However, don’t go to the playground or the dog park where there will be other people possibly clustered. Physical activity is an anti-depressant and we’re all going to be depressed. For our hide site we learned a series of isometric exercises because we could even get out of the hole for 30 days. Hopefully you’re not in a hole.
7. Ration your food and figure out how many days worth you have. I discussed in my previous post what kind of food you need. Yeah, your diet might get kind of blah, but blah is better than sick. If and when you have to go to the store, follow the procedure I outlined in my previous post. You’ll be amazed how little you need to touch if you know what you need and focus.
8. Adapt to new rules and laws; don’t fight them, regardless if you think they make sense or not. Small example: Amazon unpublished the kindle version of The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide last night. Why? Most likely because I added the word Coronavirus to the product description and keywords and Amazon is purging all the plagiarized hack jobs being uploaded to get people’s money and I got caught up in it. It is what it is. As before, if you find the cost prohibitive, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send you a pdf version.
9. Which leads me back to mean people. There are scammers out there taking advantage of this. Beware. While nice people will offer to help, bad people will too, in order to take advantage. Be really leery of offers from strangers. The person who wants your credit card to do your shopping for you, for example. The person pretending to work for the government who wants your information. Beware disinformation being propagated on social media. There are active organizations out there spreading lies and rumors. There are also stupid people.
10. Don’t look too far ahead. Forget about the stock market and your 401k/IRA. Forget about what the job market will be. I’m a writer of fiction and I’ve rewritten the entire history of mankind in my Area 51 series and then projected forward after an alien invasion and I’ve got no clue what things are going to be like in a year but one thing for certain: they will be different. For worse, but also for better. The most important thing you can do for yourself and those you love is make sure you’re around to experience things in a year.
And, like Spinal Tap, we turn it to 11: Take it one day at a time. Just get through today.
I’ve been checking to see what’s in stock on Amazon. Lots of survival gear has been sold out. Here are some ER Bars still for sale. I actually have some of these in my GnG bag.
The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide is still available in print.
The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (the same as above minus the prep portion) is available in print and Kindle Unlimited.