2011-09-01 / General Stories

The Apocalypse Bag

My son is not a Boy Scout, but he likes to be prepared. He also likes to know what’s going to happen before it happens. For example, when he goes to the dentist, he wants to know every procedure beforehand, step-bystep, so that he can prepare himself with whatever he deems necessary for the situation.

My son is also a worst-casescenario kind of person. You cannot be fully prepared unless you are prepared for the worst thing that could happen.

For my son, the worse that can happen is that the world as we know it would come to an end for some catastrophic reason. He would have to survive without all that he was familiar with.

That would be a scary scenario for sure, but for those of us over 40 years old, the world as we knew it as a child has already ended and has been replaced with iPods, Bluetooth, and Androids. Other than the congressional constipation we’ve always dealt with, nothing much resembles life 40 or 50 years ago.

My son, however, wants to be prepared for the worst, so he has packed a backpack with supplies he thinks could be important. He calls this bag his Apocalypse Bag.

In one pocket of this bag he has a rubber band, a shoelace, a highlighter (in case he needed to highlight something after the world ends), a magnifying glass - not for magnifying, but for starting fires - and a multi-tool.

In another pocket rests a pair of swimming goggles that might come in handy if the catastrophe that caused the apocalypse was a flood. He also has an air mask that he confiscated after we did an insulation job in our attic, because it might be dusty after the apocalypse.

He has seasonal allergies that cause his nose to run and his lungs to tighten up, so he has packed his inhaler. That’s in the First Aid pocket which, he says, is not quite complete yet. He has no First Aid supplies yet, but he does have his Red Cross Babysitter’s Training Manual. If he runs across a baby that needs the Heimlich maneuver, he will be prepared.

He has a large black plastic garbage bag stuffed into a side pocket. No, I don’t think he plans to rid the world of litter after civilization collapses, but it might keep him dry when it rains. If there is a flood, it probably won’t help much. He might use it to keep the baby dry.

Another pocket holds a deck of magic cards, in case he needs to impress the native tribes which will surely be created during an apocalypse. He says a more practical use for the deck is trading them for food or other supplies.

In the big pocket, he has packed the black sweatshirt which I have been looking for the past three months. Clothes are an iffy thing to pack. He’s a kid. He grows out of his clothes every six months. What good will a sweatshirt do him if it doesn’t fit? Maybe he could trade it for something like toilet paper, which is something I would’ve packed in my apocalypse bag, along with hand sanitizer and a cell phone. Or, maybe he could use his sweatshirt as a diaper for the baby.

Lest you think my son is woefully unprepared for a catastrophe, he did remember something for his stomach: a bottle of water, 2 snack bags of Sun Chips, a 100-calorie bag of Keebler Fudge Stripes cookies and a bag of assorted hard candy. That should last him a good six hours; enough time to hike to the nearest vending machine for some Fritos and baby formula.

He assures me that his bag is not finished yet. He says he still needs a crank flashlight, lots of batteries, aspirin, and an air soft gun.

One thing is for sure, he’ll certainly be more prepared than I am, when my world ends again.

Laura Snyder is a nationally syndicated columnist, author & speaker. You can reach Laura at lsnyder@lauraonlife.com Or visit her website www.lauraonlife.com for more info.

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