The word for the day is Redundancy. This word is usually something that connotates a “boring” or “mindless” repetition, almost in a drone-like fashion. In this case, that definition does not suffice. Redundancy in our usage is the repetition to promote a good follow-through in the event of seizure/theft of your goods so that you have a backup plan and can continue to march. You want to put together as many bags as are in as many locales as you frequent in the course of the day. Here are some locations, for starters:
Surely this can be added to, but the logic is in these examples. If you are in your home, and disaster strikes and your vehicle is stolen…you have a bag in your home. If you are at work, and the vehicle is stolen, you should have a bag at work. The key is to make them light enough so that you can strap them together (bungees or cargo straps) and take both bags without killing yourself.
We have already covered lists ad infinitum, so we’re just going to mention the bullets, beans, band-aids (the 3 “B’s”) that need to be in your bags. Let’s jump into the terms.
Duplication: this means that your bags need to be the same…John Smith’s bag in his car, home, and vehicle need to contain the same things…and all of these things in the same location with an inventory sheet for each bag (as covered in other articles). John Smith will then know (overall) what he has, and that he has one bag with each of those items at home, in his vehicle, and in his workplace.
Synchronization: this means to keep the bags as “uniform” as possible for all the family members. The same amounts of food, water purification gear, and so forth. Differences will arrive with regard to ammunition. Mr. Smith may carry a Desert Eagle .44 Magnum pistol, where Mrs. Smith may carry a Ruger SP-101 in .357 Magnum. Guess what? There needs to be a box of Mrs. Smith’s ammo in Mr. Smith’s bags, and vice-versa. Similar gear packed in a similar manner other than that. What will this do? Promote effectiveness. Mrs. Smith then knows that if all her bags are compromised, she can use one of Mr. Smith’s bags and be familiar with its contents.
Maintenance: well, this goes beyond just simple cleaning maintenance. This is also a maintenance of familiarization. What this entails is unpacking the bags, checking the contents for accountability and serviceability, and then repacking them. Sound boring? It is, but the alternative is to be unfamiliar with your equipment and then fumble around with it in the dark…only to find that it is incomplete. You need to be able to take the bag apart in the dark, in less than ideal conditions. So many people have all of the ducats to spend on beaucoup equipment…and then they just set it off in a shed or a corner, and ignore it for years at a time. That’s not the way, except the way to fail. You should practice all of this at least once a week for a few hours at a time until you are proficient with all of the equipment and locations.
Preparing is not just a bunch of supplies. It is a posture. It is a state of mind and one that you have to be continuously on your toes and on your game. By doing these things with your bags, you reduce the chances of failure when you have to perform. You also reduce the risks of losing your supplies to marauders (usually your friendly neighbors on Sesame Street) and other assorted creeps. Use these techniques to increase your efficiency and better your performance, making you readier on the day the “S” hits the fan. JJ out!