I have 100 N95 masks in my trunk right now. That’s over $600 in PPE that I don’t really need. Before you freak out, don’t worry, I plan to donate it. How did I come upon this treasure trove of life-saving gear when it’s so hard to come by? A dear friend texted me a few weeks ago and said, “I just found hundreds of N95 masks in my attic.” His father, who previously lived in the house, is a bit of a prepper; he has rations and supplies set aside in case of emergency. I’ve seen all the crazy reality TV they make about survivalists and their doomsday conspiracy theories, but right now, I feel really grateful that I get to dole these babies out. This mask situation made me wonder: What else can survivalists teach us about surviving the COVID-19 pandemic?

First of all, when I started my research, I had some misconceptions about what survivalist culture was all about. I mistakenly thought of the terms “prepper,” and “survivalist,” synonymously, but what I found was that many folx prefer one to the other. “Many preppers don’t like the term survivalist,” Joseph Daniel Alton, a 66-year-old retired physician and survivalist from Florida, told me. “The word conjures up visions of camouflage-clad, gun-toting, bunker dwellers. The grand majority of the preparedness community are regular folks who just want to prepare for the worst while hoping for the best.”

I had some misconceptions about what survivalist culture was all about.

Another misconception I had was that survivalists were all preparing for some sort of biblical end-of-days scenario. In reality, of the dozens of people I spoke with for this article, zero of them mentioned the apocalypse. Most of them seemed far more concerned about power outages and empty store shelves — which, as a person who lives in New Orleans, seems pretty realistic to me. I don’t think my friend’s father considers himself either a prepper or a survivalist, but like many people I spoke with, thinks of himself as a guy who’s made sure he and his loved ones can get through some really hard times.

All the survivalists I talked to agreed that the first step to surviving difficult conditions is getting your mind right. “Positive mental attitude is critical,” Christian Schauf, a 40-year-old in Utah, tells me. Schauf, by the way, does not refer to himself as a prepper. Schauf says that he likes to think of himself as more of an emergency situation expert. “We still have most resources at our disposal and, worst case, we’re being asked to stay in our homes, where we have everything we own. It’s completely do-able with the right attitude and perspective.” Feeling like you can handle the crazy situations life throws at you is apparently at the core of the whole survivalist mentality. READ MORE…

Article Source: Mic