The Post-Apocalyptic World Sucks Balls

slum.jpg

“Sweet, I can’t wait until the SHTF and America is just like this Mumbai slum” – Said no one who has actually been to a Slum in Mumbai Question: If you really want to live in the post-apocalyptic world then why don’t you just move to Pakistan?

Answer: Cuz It sucks balls there.

With 5000 “friends” on Facebook I see all sorts of “tough guy” nonsense flash across my news feed every day. Lately I've been seeing this “would you survive the post-apocalyptic world?” Q&A tests where you answer some mind-numbing multiple choice questions and, BAM, you can proclaim that you and Robert Neville will rule the wastelands.

This is of course followed by “Fuck Yeah bro, I’ll be shooting and looting in the post-apocalyptic world. It’s gonna’ be awesome” by whoever took this test. Next comes a legion of other people also saying something to the effect of “I can’t wait for this to happen” to “it is only a matter of time before it collapses and it can’t come sooner” in the comments below.

Now obviously this is just internet bravado that has spilled over from forums to Facebook, but there are quite a large amount of people in the tactical/prepper community that honestly believe there would be nothing better than to have the SHTF and the US plunge to some sort of Mad Max style post- apocalyptic wasteland. In fact, I am sure many of them are reading this right now as they relax during their post refractory period after jacking-it to Night of the Living Dead.

Well, if you want to live in the post-apocalyptic world it is only a plane ticket away folks. Pick any shitty 3rd world country where the “President” wears Ray-Bans and pack your bags. Besides being born in a post-war impoverished (at that time) 3rd world country, I just spent the past decade living and working in the post-apocalyptic world in places like Iraq and a dozen other impoverished countries.

And guess what folks? It is not nice.

All the stuff you see in your favorite post-apocalyptic movies is going on right now as you read this article – gang rapes, militias run by psychos who used to repair fax machines before the war, 3 day police response (but you would never call them anyway because they will also rob you), no food, no clean water, no medicine, no job, dally raids by hordes of bandits and people trading cat blubber for 10 minutes of electricity so they can charge their iPod.

And this is not even including coming home to find out that some guy in the next village over blew up your house for the 8th time because your father's, cousin's, sister's, uncle's, niece's husband killed his cousin's, sister's, uncle's, 2nd cousins-brother-in-law in 1936. But don’t worry, your wife and daughter didn't get killed. He sold them to another village for two boxes of 9mm.

Do you still feel like packing your family up and heading to Angola so you can live in the post-apocalyptic world?

So as exciting as it sounds to drive a dune buggy wearing football shoulder pads with a bleach-blond gal wearing a leather thong hanging off the side shooting people with a crossbow through the remains of your town, in practice there are a lot of downsides. Just ask the average Joe in Mogadishu, no, not that guy, the fella with one arm because he sneezed while General, President, Dr., Prime Minister, Supreme Ruler “Mad Dog” Mobuto was giving a speech and it was macheted off as a punishment for interrupting.

After working in Iraq and other war torn 3rd world countries and seeing what a miserable hell hole the post-apocalyptic world is, all I can do is let out a big old sigh every time I hear someone says they wish the apocalypse would happen. Quite frankly here in America I thank Ronald McDonald every time I drink a clean bottle of water I bought at Walmart and come home to a house that has not been burned down by marauders.

Why the hell would anyone subject themselves, no less hope and pray that someday, they will live in the post- apocalyptic world when hot pizza is a phone call away and you can spend Sundays hitting on the single moms at Starbucks instead?

Wait… I just got an email for a gig that pays $18,500.00 a month to live in Afghanistan and run security convoys.

Never mind, forget everything I just said.

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~James "ARCHER" Price

Founder – Editor in Chief DVM

James P. is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long. He spends his off time in Southeast Asia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and selling out to the highest bidder.

URBAN SURVIVAL: 5 Dumb Things People Say They Can or Would do in a Survival Situation

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- and Why They Won’t Based on Recent 3rd World Urban Survival Events

"If you jump really high the waves will just go under you bro"

After decades of studying, observing, experiencing and writing about everything Urban Survival, I have heard some serious fantasy about what people claim they would do during an Urban Survival situation. Not surprisingly most of this so-called ‘advice’ comes from people who have never been in a Urban Survival, ‘Fight or Die’ situation or have even stepped outside of the continental US with the exception of Bus Tours in their lives.

Most of the crazy shit I have heard comes from fake tough-guys, dudes who regurgitate stuff they have read on forums and keyboard commandos that make Bear Grills's advice look reasonable. Having spent the past 10+ living, traveling and working in the 3rd world, I have seen people (including myself) survive the worst possible situations and do what they had to do to either survive or die.

From my experience, the current 3rd world is what the 1st world would be like after a prolonged ‘event’. That may be a natural disaster, civil war, overwhelming violent crime, financial meltdown or pandemics. In my opinion, the best place to study what people will or will not do when the SHTF in the 1st world, is to study what people in the 3rd world have and are currently doing to survive day by day.

The following are 5 Things People Say They would do in a Survival Situation - and why it will not work based on what has already happened to millions of people in the 3rd world:

Bug Out on Foot

During an Urban Survival situation, I give someone about 15 minutes of walking down the street with a big-ass backpack and an AR on their chest before they get shot and robbed.

During the Jakarta, Indonesia Riots in 1998 people could not even make it 3 blocks without running into a homemade roadblock manned by a group of knife and club-wielding thugs looking to strip them of everything, and that was only a day after the riots started.

Given, the US (or the 1st world in general) is a bit more civilized, but I still give any major metropolitan city in the US 10 to 15 days before it is at the same level of chaos that a city in the 3rd world would be at after only a day under the same circumstances.

FYI: Considering the amount of firearms in the US replace ‘knife and club’ with 'AK-47 and Chrome plated .32 autos'. Now I know you are a bad ass and everything, but you can not take on 13 armed dug-in people, just not gona’ happen.

Even discounting all of the above, can you walk 100 miles carrying 50 pounds of gear, gun, kit and ammo – and forage for food and water along the way? No, literally millions of people during civil wars have tried and failed; the numbers are against you.

Look at any historical Urban Survival event in the 3rd world where people had to abandon their homes and go on foot seeking refuge somewhere else. How did that work out for them?

Drink their Piss

Take a Gatorade bottle, piss in it, leave it on your back porch for 2 days, do not drink any water during those two days and take a big gulp of warm piss.

Did you bust a blood vessel in your eye throwing up?

I have helped negotiate the release of (or to make their stay more comfortable) a dozen guys in 3rd world jails. Many times by the time I arrived weeks have passed by and the only water they had access to had been from a bucket shared with 20 other dudes. Despite the water giving them the most brutal shits they have ever imagined, they still drink the bucket water over a pee shake.

Trade for Goods

Ok, it has been a few months after some whacked event has caused your city to turn into Mogadishu and you need some supplies. You get into your moms car or hoof-it 30 miles to some unfamiliar and densely inhabited area. Next you toss your box of .22’s, Johnny Walker Black and issues of Hustler on the counter hoping to make a trade for Milk and Tampons.

Guess what happens to the bright eyed and bushy tailed new guy in every 3rd world Black Market?

If they are lucky, they only get robbed - shanked and man raped if unlucky

3rd World Black Markets are a necessary evil in my line of work - I have bought Booze on the black market in Indonesia, guns out of the back of a Land Cruiser in the Middle East and worked undercover in the counterfeiting biz in the US. They are environments where amateurs get killed or jacked on a daily basis.

So good luck with walking into a post-event black market with a backpack full of the most sought after and desperately needed supplies expecting people to obey the honor system.

Eat Someone

Sure, sure I know what you are thinking. Those soccer players who crashed on a snow topped mountain had a pot-luck on their friend’s asses when they got hungry. Well you are not on the top of a mountain after your prop plane took a nose dive. You are living in a city, and you are hungry for a Big Mac.

In an Urban Survival situation, you will not be held up in the hull of a crashed plane while your buddies die from exposure. More likely than not, you will be in an apartment or house, in the middle of white-bread USA.

For 99.999% of people, the act of taking a chainsaw and sawing off an arm, throwing it in a pot and digging-in, is not something they could do. Even in the cases of people who have been adrift for months at sea or Iraqis trapped in their homes during the awesome invasion of Iraq, no one resorted to cannibalism.

Why? Eating Long Pig is fucking disgusting, it is a psychological thing that the majority of people can not do no matter how hungry they are. It’s humanity baby, it’s what separates us from the dogs (and why eat Aunt Jenny when dogs are so delicious?).

Defend their House

During the Jakarta riots, thousands of Chinese tried to hunker down in their houses and apartments. No matter how well fortified or heavily armed they were eventually the human waves of rioters broke in and raped, robed and/or killed them. Secure US Embassy's, Military bases in Afghanistan and drug lord Houses in Mexico have all been taken over in resent times, proving that all buildings can and will be taken over if the opposing force is overwhelming.

No matter how well fortified you are you can not hold back hundreds of people, desperate people will crawl over body’s to get you.

Also - Have you watched the end of Young Guns 2 where the gang is held up in an old house? Now you know how to take a house filled with people who are superior warriors.

It’s called a match.

Eat Cat Food

This is the only one that I have seen someone do in the 3rd world, back in the day I saw an old dude eating cat food on the side of the road in Cambodia. Lord knows if he was actually starving or just a crazy hobo who ate handfuls of Meow Mix between bouts of yelling at mailboxes.

The big difference between some dude in Cambodia eating cat food and you Mr. Joe USA digging into a can of Liver and Kibbles cat chow is the Cambodian dude has been eating fried spiders for snacks since he was six years old.

Just like the Piss Bottle above I wish to invite you to dig into a nice room temperature tin of cat food and keep it down.

In conclusion:

Yep – you are fucked

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~James G

Founder – Editor in Chief DVM

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long. He spends his off time in Southeast Asia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and eating dogs

BOOKS - Ditch Medicine: Advanced Field Procedures For Emergencies, by Hugh Coffee

Ditch Medicine
Ditch Medicine

This Book Blew Rmabo's Mind!

Whether it's a war zone or a civil disaster area, traumatic injuries often occur in remote, unsanitary locations. Coffee’s book explains advanced field procedures for small wound repair, care of the infected wound, IV therapy, pain control, amputations, treatment of burns, airway procedures and more.

Hugh Coffee is a professional paramedic with extensive experience administering emergency medicine in Third World and battlefield environments. Coffee’s experience in Third World and austere environment medical procedures include improvising medical equipment from available materials and performing disaster-medicine procedures under primitive conditions.

Coffee's book is in use by many SF medics and other folks who often go in harm’s way. Coffee gets right to the bottom line in dealing with the subject of field trauma first aid and "meatball surgery." He learned it the hard way during the guerrilla war in Guatemala -- patching up troops on hilltops where no doctor would go.

I may be biased as he's Hugh "Doc" Coffee is a good friend and I was on a medical team in Kenya, Uganda (during an Ebola outbreak) and the southern Sudan (Sudanese guerrilla war) with him, but anyone who is a combat medic or who may need to perform first aid in the third world needs to read this book. I personally watched Doc Coffee revamp and supply a surgical ward in a Sudanese Rehabilitation and Relief Association field hospital near the frontlines.

Coffee is a fount of knowledge on the subject of improvised medical and surgical techniques and imparts it clearly and concisely to the reader. Ditch Medicine can be found on many survivalist and prepper resource lists and is a recommended addition to the bookshelf of any first-responder, EMT, etc., who could possibly see themselves forced to operate, literally, beyond their training and experience in an emergency.

This book is an invaluable resource on emergency techniques for those with previous medical training (EMT thru General Practitioner). Hugh also has a video series available from Paladin Press.

Click Here to buy Ditch Medicine: Advanced Field Procedures For Emergencies on Amazon.com >>>

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ~Rob Krott Foreign Correspondent

Rob-Krott
Rob-Krott

Rob is a former US Army Officer who has traveled to over 70 countries and worked with several foreign Military’s. Rob is also the author of Save the Last Bullet for Yourself: A Soldier of Fortune in the Balkans and Somalia, a war memoir of the Balkans and Somalia.

TACTICAL GEAR: Helmets, Protect That Noggin

Civilian Contractor Helmet
Civilian Contractor Helmet

Pimp My Helmet Bitches

I see a lot of guys both off and online discussing the latest and greatest rigs, mag pouches, FAK’s, admin pouches and armor carriers that they just bought or have on their ‘tactical wish-list’. And all the stuff they have put together for their BOB’s, go-bags and Vehicle Emergency Kits.

But one thing I rarely see mentioned is helmets

Answer this - what do construction workers, military folks, skateboarders, rock climbers, motorcyclists, firefighters, Security Contractors and that ‘slow’ cousin of yours all have in common?

They all wear helmets

Why? – if you hit your head and get knocked the fuck out then guess what?

You can’t fight if you are taking a nap on the pavement.

civilian security contractors iraq
civilian security contractors iraq

In my opinion everyone should have some sort of helmet as part of their tactical kit, go bag, for training or just shoved in a closet. I keep one in my Iraq Mission Bag, 3rd World BOB, in the trunk of my car in the states and a few stacked in the ole DVM Arms Room.

Now I am not saying you should go out and buy an 800 dollar super SF tactical helmet with rails and Velcro all over it. You can find tons of good quality ballistic helmets online for less than a hundred bucks.

Also, you don’t even necessarily need a ballistic helmet; a skateboard helmet will provide great non-ballistic protection and prevent you from the above knocking yourself the fuck out.

I have personally seen a guy jump out of his guntruck, start running, trip, and did a sleeping beauty in the middle of an Iraqi highway. Wearing my helmet (back in the day when IED’s and VBIED’s were a major threat) has saved my ass on several occasions.

And speaking from personal experience getting knocked out or hit in the head so hard you don’t even know where the fuck you are is generally an unpleasant situation that renders you combat ineffective.

But helmets are hardly just for those working in 3rd world non permissive environments, for those of you stateside who are prepared citizens adding a helmet into your tactical ‘bag of goodies’ is something I would highly suggest.

They can be used for everything from tactical training, home defense, active shooter situations, civil unrest, during natural disasters to even helping to pull someone out of an overturned car.

US Contractor
US Contractor

As for choosing the different types of helmets out there it is really up to you, for ballistic helmets I would suggest something high cut like the Kejo Special Forces Helmet I use, but if you are on a budget just grab a used military Kevlar off of ebay or Amazon.com. For non-ballistic helmets just go down to your local sporting goods shop and try a few on.

So if you have a few bucks lying around or if you are putting together a list of new tactical shit to buy go ahead throw a helmet into the mix

Non-Ballistic helmets on Amazon.com >>>

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~James G Founder – Editor in Chief

JamesGrey
JamesGrey

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long. He spends his off time in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and trying not to get knocked da’ fuck out

URBAN SURVIVAL: Buying Gold is Only for Mr-T and Warren Buffett

gold-girl
gold-girl

Not a week goes by without someone sending me an email asking my opinion on buying Gold as an investment for the “impending 3rd world like economic collapse in the US” or various other financial scenarios.

I still can’t figure out why I have somehow become this bastion of financial advice on investing that all my friends go to when they are deciding on making some off-the-wall financial move.

I think it is a combination of the fact I have always had a job (a rare trait amongst my buddies), read allot of books (and even rarer trait amongst my buds) and in their minds my being an international contractor means I must be rolling in mountains of coin that I invest in exotic and shady ventures like the international Gorilla Hand Ashtray trade (in reality I blow it all on Booze, Easy Women and Bacon Cheeseburgers).

Generally the tinfoil-hat talk about the U.S. becoming a 3rd world wasteland like Somalia makes me immediately delete said message (anyone who thinks the U.S. could ever turn into a 3rd world like hell-hole has obviously never been to a 3rd world hell-hole) - but one of my buddies sent me the rare rational question about gold as an investment.

The Following is my response, unedited:

Dear Crazy Friend:

Dude, I have been seeing this “Buy Gold” thing from as far back as when I was a kid reading about the need to buy gold when the Russians invade the U.S.A in my favorite 80's rag The American Survival Guide.

It seems like every survival magazine (and even some mainstream financial publications), so-called survival bloggers or gurus start spouting off about buying Gold like it is a new idea or something whenever some sort of unlikely collapse is supposedly on the horizon (yet never happens) from as far back as the Cold War.

Historically speaking Gold prices have been dead flat during good economic times (like when everyone has a job) and spikes when the economy in the 1st world hits the crapper as a whole (when you get laid off of your job).

And therein lays the fundamental problem with buying Gold as an investment.

To make money from the rise (or expected rise) in gold prices you more or less have to wait until the economy is falling off a cliff (and you are suffering financially) to make gold a profitable investment.

So when gold becomes a good investment - you won’t have the money to buy any anyway.

goldmember
goldmember

1.) People who are already millionaires/billionaires – because they are the only people in the world who have enough cold hard cash stuffed under their beds during an economic downturn to buy the large quantities of precious metals to actually make a substantial return that one can use for financial self reliance (IE: pay the rent over a prolonged period).

2.) People who are selling you fear, IE: survival gurus, financial advisers, commercial media enterprises and people who sell gold. Basically people who want to scare you under the guise of helping you survive through hard times when all they are really doing is selling you shit and laughing all the way to their vacation home in the Cayman Islands.

3.) Pirates

Also ask yourself this:

How many working-class folks like us do you know who are living off of the capital gains from their gold and precious metals investment portfolio?

Unless you have some buddy’s at the country club who have last names like Rockefeller or Gates that I don't know about, I am guessing exactly zero.

So dude, if you really want to square away yourself financially for the impending zombie alien plague then drop down to the basic cable package, quit smoking, stop buying 30 DVD’s every month, pay down that 28.9% interest credit card and dump your girlfriend (that advice has nothing to do with money, I just hate fat people and your self-righteous smug liberal girlfriend)

Your Buddy,

~James "Mother-Fucking" G.

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~James G Founder - Editor in Chief

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long; he has traveled to over 50 countries chasing fortune and glory. He spends his off time in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and selling off his Krugerrands for beer money. James G. on FACEBOOK

URBAN SURVIVAL: Improvised Weapons - The DVD Shank

DVD-Knife
DVD-Knife

NOTE: The following article is for educational and Entertainment purposes, do not attempt to follow any of the below information.

As someone who is constantly passing through countries for work and play where you can’t own weapons - figuring out how to make a lethal weapon MacGyver style is a must-have skill (especially in countries where anti-American attitudes or street crime is a threat).

Also - knowing a few improvised weapon tricks isn’t just something that is handy for when I am traveling internationally. When I am back in the U.S. hanging out with my buddies in “anti-firearm/knife/pepper-spray/harsh language” Washington D.C. I keep a few common objects on me that I can use as a ditch weapon.

But out of all the different types of improvised weapons the DVD or CD is my favorite Every Day Carry in restrictive 1st World places like D.C. - all you have to do is snap it in half and wrap a handkerchief or piece of paper around it and you have one nasty knife that will slice and dice better than a Ginsu.

Another advantage the broken DVD has is it’s easy to explain if a cop or someone asked me: “Why do you have a broken DVD in your pocket wrapped-up in a handkerchief?” My answer would be: “I accidentally broke it, so I wrapped it in a handkerchief so it wouldn’t get any more scratched up on the way home – hopefully I can ship it to one of those data recovery companies in the back of PC magazine”

Article and Commentary Track

[powerpress]

The Safest way to break a DVD in half is to just place it under a towel and quickly bend it in half until it snaps – and for fucks sake do not hold it in front of your face and break it. You may have to do this several times before you get the shape you want so have a stack of your “trip with grandma to Vegas” DVD’s sitting around.

I am assuming you know some basic stabbing and slashing moves, if you don’t, take a seminar or buy a DVD or something so you will have some sort of idea how to use a knife. The broken DVD is best suited for stabs to soft tissue, the groin, stomach and slashes to the face or any exposed skin - avoid stabbing in the chest or anywhere there is heavy clothing.

This is a “hit and run” improvised weapon, meaning it is not suited or study enough for a prolonged fight. So if some dude in Mexico City tries to man-rape you don’t attempt some sort of epic knife-fight with him, just hurt him and run before the DVD breaks.

If you guys have any other good ideas for improvised Every Day Carry weapons that won’t get you arrested for carrying go ahead and make a comment on this article.

Read All URBAN SURVIVAL Articles | Read All Articles by JAMES G.

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~James G Founder - Editor in Chief

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long; he has traveled to over 50 countries chasing fortune and glory. He spends his off time in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and stabbing people with Tracey Ullman CD's

URBAN SURVIVAL: Concealed Carrying a Large Fixed Blade Knife Daily (the CRKT Hissatsu)

CRKT-Hissatsu-Concealed
CRKT-Hissatsu-Concealed

After working in Iraq for a couple of months and making the mistake of being competent and having a fairly polite personality as opposed to the shitty security contractor douchebagnus “I am a tough bearded guy” attitude I was placed on a tedious project (because I am “responsible” and know how to write) in an area where I would not be able to carry a firearm for a while.

This had nothing to do with the threat level; it had to do with some stupid political BS that I won’t get into here. Considering that would be on a base shared by Local Nationals with the constant threat of kidnapping I sure as shit was not going to walk around unarmed.

So I decided to go way old school and arm-up with a full sized fixed-blade knife as my primary weapon that I would conceal – with an Applegate-Fairbairn gerber Mini Covert clipped to my pocket as back-up. My original plan was to rig-up an ankle rig for my Short KA-BAR but on a PX run I saw the sexy looking CRKT Hissatsu hanging on a rack so I snatched one up.

Despite its rather long length it ended up being an excellent choice for concealing, mostly due to its Zytel Sheath that is unintentionally perfect for concealing. The Zytel Sheath has a removable Zytel belt clip that can be screwed on and off the sheath with a flat head screwdriver (I used my thumbnail) that can be attached to the holes and rails anywhere on the sheath.

But the cool part is if you mount the Zytel belt clip upside-down at the top it basically becomes an inside the waistband paddle sheath that you can still loop your belt into. After hooking the Zytel belt clip on upside-down you just stuff the sheath into your pants and hook your belt through, throw on a shirt and BAM, you are now concealing a 7” CRKT Hissatsu with no visible footprint.

In this particular concealed set-up when I draw the CRKT Hissatsu it is in a reverse grip, which is fine with me as I am familiar with this style of knife fighting. The draw is a relativity smooth action of pulling up my shirt with my weak hand and gripping and drawing the knife with my strong hand.

I tried wearing it on my weak side and doing a cross-draw but it was sloppy and slow. I practiced the draw about 300 times before I started carrying it and I can now draw and cut in a single smooth motion in about 1 second.

CRKT Hissatsu sheath with the Belt clip attached the standard way
CRKT Hissatsu sheath with the Belt clip attached the standard way
CRKT Hissatsu sheath with the belt clip attached upside down for inside the waistband (IWB) concealment
CRKT Hissatsu sheath with the belt clip attached upside down for inside the waistband (IWB) concealment

The CRKT Hissatsu EDC concealed is surprisingly comfortable and unobtrusive, the one bad point is I have to wear a t-shirt under my regular shirt because the handle rubs against my side – that sort of sucks because it is one trillion degrees outside but hey, no choice.

Now for most folks reading this concealing and daily carrying a large fixed blade knife isn’t legal or practical (why not just pack a gun). But for various unforeseen reasons you may find yourself in a situation similar to mine because of your profession or environment (or if you are just strange and like to pack big-ass knives for no particular reason) so I thought I would share the info.

CRKT-Hissatsu
CRKT-Hissatsu

CRKT Hissatsu >>>> 70 Bucks and Up

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~James G Founder - Editor in Chief

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long; he has traveled to over 50 countries chasing fortune and glory. He spends his off time in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and laughing his ass off when reading the Hissatsu description on the CRKT site.

URBAN SURVIVAL: Lethal Force While Defending Yourself and Your Family

You go right into warrior mode, you grab your kit (body armor, rig, ect.) and your AR-15 and slowly start waking upstairs. You open the basement door and, you click your shurefire on and you find yourself staring at 2 guys wearing ski-masks and carrying pistols. They take a step towards you and you zap em’, 2 in one guy and 6 in the other – see you in hell fuckers – your family is safe now, you did you job as protector of your family.

URBAN SURVIVAL: The Greyman - Crazy Cop Eyes

The Greyman isn’t just about dressing in a way to blend in (or just not draw attention to yourself as a “prepared person”) – it is also about your mannerisms. Most cops, cons, spies, CO’s* and martial artists can spot a colleague almost instantly just by the way they carry themselves. But one of the most blaring “I am a cop/military/prepared person” physical indicators a person can do is what I call the “Cop Crazy Eyes”.

URBAN SURVIVAL: The Vehicle Emergency Kit

I have been stranded out in the middle of nowhere after my car broke down two times, once way in the mountains in the middle of winter in Virginia and once in the desert in the Middle East. Both times I was stranded I was seriously unprepared, I was hungry and freezing my ass of in Virginia and I couldn’t get a cell signal (and my phone battery died) when I was stranded in the desert.

URBAN SURVIVAL: Is Your Self Defense EDC Getting Out of Hand?

I have had quite a few requests to write an article on EDC, but my self defense EDC is sort of lame (gun, knife, knucks, spray) so I decided to do a bit of research on some of the popular survival and gun forums. After about a half a day reading the page long lists of all the EDC items that some people carry I was pretty dumbfounded. The first thing I thought was “do they really carry all of that creap, even at work?”

URBAN SURVIVAL: The Urban E&E Bag Concept is Silly

I have been toying around with writing an E&E Bag article for a wile now but I didn’t really see many people getting any use out of it. I mean, seriously, how many people need a “Jack Bauer” E&E Bag to avoid capture or assassination in an urban environment in the States (or any other 1st world country)?

URBAN SURVIVAL: Stop Preparing for the Apocalypse and Plan For Next Thursday

This is the problem with many people in the survival community; they are hot-shit squared away when it comes to being prepared for natural and man-made disasters. But when it comes to practical daily living they are a bigger train wreck than their neighbors who only have 4 days of food in there houses.

URBAN SURVIVAL – MOVIES: I Am Legend Dissected

I Am Legend Dissected
I Am Legend Dissected

Despite being a Highly educated Scientist Dr. Neville would not have lasted 10 minutes in a post-apocalyptic world

You may be wondering why I am reviewing a 3 year old movie that has been discussed on just about every survival forum out there. Well, I have a couple reasons and the main one being about 99% of the people talking about this movie on survival forums were only criticizing it and not adding any explanations or “what I would do” to the many Urban Survival FAIL!’s in it.

And don’t get me wrong, their are a ton of things to complain about in this movie from an Urban Survivalist point of view. But what I want to do in this review is not only point out the FAIL!'s, but try to explain why those mistakes were in the movie and also what I would have done in the same situation.

A Quick Primer on I am Legend: This film is loosely based on the book of the same name written by Richard Matheson. It is basically a post-apocalyptic flick where the world’s population had been virtually wiped out by a virus that has only left behind vampire like humans called the “dark seekers”.

The only uninfected (he is immune) survivor in New York is Dr. Robert Neville, a famous and wealthy Army virologist. The movie revolves around him trying to discover a cure wile attempting to avoid the dark seekers at night, while at the same time his sanity is slowly slipping due to years of isolation.

Knife
Knife

Dr. Neville Only Carries a Small Folding Knife

The Problem:

In the movie the only knife you see Dr. Neville use or carry is a benchmade automatic knife. Now pretty much anyone in either an Urban or Wilderness (Central Park is an overgrown forest in the movie) survival situation would carry a fixed blade knife.

The Explanation:

Dr. Neville may be an Army soldier but he is not a combat arms guy, he is a world famous Army scientist and a high ranking officer. It is doubtful if a famous pre-madonna Army officer had ever attended any Army wilderness survival training. He probably chose the benchmade folder because a folding pocket knife seems like a good blade choice to an untrained person.

What I would Do:

I would carry a good fixed blade knife that could do double duty as a combat knife and utility knife. My first choice would be a Marine Ka-Bar style knife with a leather sheath, not a kydex one (no more plastic factories so you have to choose stuff that lasts and is easy to repair). I may still carry a folding knife clipped to my poket for back-up, but I wouldn’t use it as my primary.

No Gear
No Gear

Dr. Neville Doesn’t Carry Extra M-4 Mags, leaves his pistol in his car and pretty much doesn’t use any tactical gear at all

The Problem:

This one sort of perplexes me, even if he did spend his entire military career in an office he would have still received some basic weapons training. And if he gets stuck outdoors after sunset he would have to shoot his way through the Dark Seekers, even an idiot could figure that it would take some solid gear and more than 30 rounds to do that.

The Explanation:

After spending 3 years all alone and doing the same thing every day complacency has set in. That combined with the obvious fact that Dr. Neville is slowly loosing his damn mind - he now just leaves his extra magazines in his car or stuffs them in the bottom of his bag.

I have actually seen this before with guys that work in guard towers in the Middle East for years. They get in the tower and throw all of their magazines, body armor and gear on the floor because it is heavy and nothing had ever happened in the past where they needed it.

What I would Do:

Hell you guys already know the answer to this one; chest harness, 12 magazines, frags, pistol and FAK (first aid kit). Shit, I would probably keep a flamethrower and a few rocket launchers at arms reach just because I could.

I would not wear body armor because I wouldn’t have to worry about other humans shooting me and the Dark Seekers don’t carry guns or knives.

car
car

Dr. Neville Drives a mustang sports car and civilian SUV when the city is filled with APC’s and armored cars

The Problem:

If he gets caught outside at night the Dark Seekers will tear a normal car or SUV apart (and that actually does happen to him). In New York City there are dozens of agency’s and private citizens that used armored SUV’s (Secret Service, DSS, NYPD, Gangster Rappers, and so on). And that’s not even counting all of the armored military hummers and APC’s abandoned around the city.

The Explanation:

Well, in the movie he only gets caught outside after dark twice, one time in a snare (something that has never happened before) and the other time he did it on purpose. He also keeps a religious like schedule when it comes to heading back home way before dark. So this is a combination of him never accidently being caught outside after dark and complacency again. He probably just felt it wasn’t necessary to drive an APC because he “always” gets home before dark.

What I would Do:

I would drive an armored hummer and have an APC or two maintained just in case. But I do understand why he drove the mustang, you have to admit it would be bad-ass to drive a brand new Shelby Cobra Mustang 80 miles an hour over New York City sidewalks, I know I couldn’t resist doing that.

Hell, I would be driving tanks through shopping malls and shooting mounds of gold Rolexes with an UZI wile barbecuing lion cubs over stacks of burning 100 dollar bills.

home
home

Dr. Neville lives in a family townhouse in a city overrun by Dark seekers – and that is his only home

The Problem:

He lives in an unhardened relativity unsecure townhouse and he doesn’t have any secure safehouses in the city in case he gets caught outside after dark. Of all the places to live with thousands of monsters running around at night, a house probably isn’t the best choice. He did add some steel shutters, UV lights and IED’s to secure and defend his home. But it would have been better just to live somewhere that was already hardened and was easier to defend.

He also doesn’t have any safehouses in the city, so if he gets caught outside after dark he is basically screwed unless he can make it back to his house.

The Explanation:

This is an easy one, the townhouse he lives in is the home where he lived with his deceased wife and daughter. His mind is obviously starting to wander at this point so staying physically connected to the one thing from his life before the world ended comforts him.

What I would Do:

I would live in one of the city’s underground emergency management centers that were set up after 911. These are 5 foot thick bomb shelters with state of the art surveillance systems, food storage rooms, housing, bio-chem filtered air and fire suppression systems already set up.

I would also prepare all of the other centers so I could change living locations at will along with pre-positioning tanks and APC’s to use as mobile safehouses all around the city just incase I wasn’t able to make it back to my bunker before dark.

gun
gun

Dr. Neville carries an M-4 despite the fact it isn’t combat effective against mutable contacts with the dark seekers

The Problem:

Every time he shoots a Dark Seeker with his M-4 it doesn’t do shit, I don’t believe he kills a single one with his M-4 ever. In a city filled with guns he would have his choice of rifles so why would he continue to use an ineffective weapon?

The Explanation:

Like I said before Dr. Neville is a scientist and not a warrior, so the only weapon training he has had was with an Army issue M-4. He uses that weapon probably because it is the only rifle he knows how to use. It is also a pretty light and easy to walk around with rifle so he has also chosen it for convenience.

There is also nothing to indicate that he has been involved in any armed confrontations with the Dark Seekers before (a fact shown by how scared he is in the warehouse) so he may not even know the M-4 is a poor choice.

What I would Do:

I would carry a 12 gauge magazine fed shotgun, keep an M60 Mk 43 Mod 1 in my car and maybe an enclosed turret with a 50. cal browning on the roof. The reason I would choose a 12 gauge magazine fed shotgun is because every time Dr. Neville uses his M-4 on a Dark Seeker he is only a few feet away from one. It is hard to beat the massive amount of damage a shotgun can do at point blank range.

I would also keep a flamethrower close by because I love flamethrowers.

i-am-legend
i-am-legend

Things in the movie that are so dumb they don’t have any explanation

-He uses a grenade and it explodes like a nuclear bomb

When a hand grenade goes off it does not make a massive fireball

-He runs generators inside his house

This would kill you in about 1 hour

-He runs his generators at night and the Dark Seekers do not hear it

I have no explanation for this

-He doesn’t have any porn in his house

No way he could hold out for 3 years all alone

-He isn’t an alcoholic

Your entire family is killed in front of your eyes and then every other person on the planet dies except for the cannibal vampires that own the night - so you now live in a city filled with booze and you are not drunk 24-7? Sorry, I call BS on that one. To be fair, in the original book he is an alcoholic.

Well folks, besides the complaints about this movie from an Urban Survivalists point of view I really like this movie. It is part of the permanent DVD collection to the DV Adventurers Library.

What would you guys have done in the same situations if you were in Dr. Neville’s shoes?

I Am Legend at Amazon.com >>>

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~James G

James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long. He spends his off time in his homes in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns and writing poorly written articles.

URBAN SURVIVAL - BOOKS: The SAS Urban Survival Guide and Tom Brown’s City and Suburban Survival Review

These books The SAS Urban Survival Guide and Tom Brown’s City and Suburban Survival were written by two of the top “gurus” in the wilderness survival field; Tom Brown and John “Lofty” Wiseman. One was pretty good despite going off subject a bit and the other sucked mad balls.