How should baby boomers plan for the future? Well, if you’re anything like BoomerCafé’s Ranter-in-Residence Carrier Slocomb, you’ll create A Shadow Portfolio!
No one’s running into the theater shouting “Fire!” just yet, but you must know, the world’s weather is getting uglier. After all, you’re a well-informed boomer -– you’ve lived this insane climate. You know that if meteorologists traded in stocks about the weather, they’d send you “sell alerts” via Twitter.Thankfully, I’ve never had to pull my family from our home’s rubble, nor have we fled a thirty-foot storm surge. We never lost our pets to golf-ball-sized hail, and while high wind’s a threat, it’s never flattened us like it might have you. But even without firsthand experience, let’s agree that the weather’s uglier now and we need to be proactive in return.
Maybe someone you know is building a backyard bunker. Hey, didn’t we boomers live like this once a long time ago? We were kids and the Soviet Union wanted to “Send us back to the stone age.” Do you remember Civil Defense drills? Screeching sirens? Ducking under teeny-tiny desks? Warnings to “Walk, don’t run from the building, children!” To say nothing of Smokey the Bear, without whom we’d have had tons of forest fires!Was there a room in your basement for canned goods, first aid, bed rolls, and water jugs? Plus plenty of batteries, crayons, and a comic book stash? Did you grow up dreading, then calmly accepting the inevitability of nuclear annihilation? Accepting it because, when you laid nuclear mega-tonnage on the table and did the kill-rates and debated destructive-force with your buddies, you came to a sobering adult thought: if life meant that you were the only kid left alive in a world ruled by giant cockroaches, why bother living?
So is this what fueled the 60′s, party-till-you-drop get wasted attitude? Giant cockroaches?
If bad weather makes you feel like a mouse in a room of cats, remember how coolly you accepted your fate when you were twelve? But wait, this isn’t your father’s Cold War -– pull up your socks and be prepared! It’s time you learned to survive better without power, phone, Internet, gas, andwaterlines in a hurt house. Learn to take charge of disaster before bigger poo hits. Start a shadow portfolio today! Here’s how …
Parse life into bare necessities: Food and Water, Shelter, Power. Then, of these, choose what you’ll buy for your portfolio. First, imagine your neighborhood and region in ruins -– no power or authority, your home only partially livable. But you can make it: your portfolio is a stockpile of Meals-Ready-to-Eat (MREs) to live off and trade.It’s funny, people hit by a catastrophe think generators are important. Well, they are, until you run out of fuel. Supplies of pain relievers, antibiotics, antiseptics, and surgical items reign highest. Think what’s cheap and what will keep: cooking oils, soaps, salt, sugar. Caffeine will become the new gold, as will any product that suppresses appetites. Demand for warm clothing, hand tools, bikes, nails, tarps, baking soda, and water purifiers will explode.
You should stockpile sustaining things that you can then trade for items that will insure your survival, and the survival of those you love. Here, I’ll make you a promise: keep a healthy shadow portfolio and I guarantee you’ll stay one step ahead of the giant cockroaches.