Fear and Desperation 

So, I live in the wonderful State of Idaho in what is called, the “Treasure Valley”. I’ve enjoyed living here for the past 20+ years and we have never been hit this hard with snow the entire time.

Like many people around the country, Idaho is getting its share of extreme winter weather. And I wanted to share an observation with you.

I’ve seen this before on news sites and broadcasts showing people reacting to an severe storm coming. Shelves emptied, long lines, the panicked and fearful, etc. but I’ve never really seen it here, in Idaho.

Until yesterday and today.

Idaho isn’t immune to panic, fear and desperation.
As is my custom on Saturday’s after my workouts, I planned out the following seven days of dinner meals for my family, put together a grocery list and then headed to the grocery store. There is a locally owned and operated chain called Winco that I prefer to frequent, only going to Walmart if I have to. Yesterday was no exception and I had my way, so off  to Winco I went.

Since a winter storm was rapidly approaching, I switched my morning training time with going shopping first. I was surprised to see so many people there that early, but I just figured they wanted to get done too, before they storm.

Now, when I go to the store, I am in mission mode. I have my list, my pen and my calculator so I can stay on point with my budget. I get in, get shit done and get out. Everything was per usual, save for the crowds. Nobody acting strange yet.

Long story short, got home, unloaded, then went to train, I realized that evening that I had missed putting a few things on my list so I planned on going early the next morning during a lull in the storm.

Social media began to tip me off of a change in the public’s attitude as other friends began to report “Black Friday” kinds of crowds and behavior, up to and including people trying to barter and offer money for cases of water and other supplies that people had in their carts.

Seriously. They hadn’t even purchased it yet and they were being offered money or a trade! Honestly glad nothing worse happened.

I kept this in mind as I woke up this morning at 0530 and out on the road by 0615 to retrieve the few things I missed plus a few extra last minute necessities.

I hit Walmart first due to their proximity to my home. 

This is the water area. Even the “culligan” water area was completely depleted of gallon jugs and the like.

I overheard and paid close attention to the conversations of the employees. They too described similar and worse than Black Friday conditions.

Having retrieved what I needed, I decided to head over to Winco to see how things were there and maybe to score some water if there was some. Because, why not. More drinkable water isn’t a bad thing.

I hit up Winco for the other item I needed and had a conversation with one employee confirming the same activity happened there. I noticed that they actually had two pallets full with cases of water. I grabbed a couple and headed to checkout. As the checker helped me, she too volunteered information regarding yesterday’s events. 

From what she told me, the only reason the cases they had were there this morning was due to the pallets being stored high above on the industrial shelving and the crowds so immense that they couldn’t get the forklift in! The crowds were angry but they couldn’t see past their own desperation and fear to realize that they were causing part of the issue.

Funny enough, they obliterated by example of the locust, the Top Ramen aisle. Funny that they took something that requires water instead of the cans of soup that can be ate right away without extra preps being used up.

Fear is like a virus and an antidote orinoculation from it is detachment. Another is having a software centered mentality.

Preps are limited to shelf life and ultimately consumption, since most preps aren’t renewable. Software mentality combats this. 

Do you know how to filter water?

Do you know how to collect snow properly in order to convert it to water?

Things like that can carry you a long way.

It’s the same approach as a firearm: knowing the fundamentals very well can help you be very effective with just about any firearm you pick up.

It’ll be interesting around here if the power goes out, but it’ll be fine. I personally wonder who around the area will start thinking more proactively about preps for emergencies (at least). I’m willing to bet the majority will go back to buying soda and chips once this blows over.

Interesting times indeed.

Anywho… thoughts and observations for those who have ears to hear.

Keep your powder dry.


About JustTom

Acta Non Verba.
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