Survival Skills #2

by Honeybadger

More unusual skills

Mushroom farming

It sounds ridiculous but the simple fact any number of types of apocalypse could make traditional farming methods almost impossible. Dragons will burn up a years hard work in seconds, an ice age will make ground unworkable, if the machines rise a farm is far too risky and in a nuclear winter you aren’t going to have enough light, even after the ground recovers enough not to poison you. You still need to eat.

Mushroom farms are often located in dark, damp caves. Wonderful fireproof caves, not visible by machines or dragons from the air. Mushrooms don’t need much light, they don’t require all that pesky chlorophyll to grow. They are a good source of protein. Personally I hate them, but come the apocalypse they may well become my new favourite, indeed my only regular, source of food.

Raising barns
Assuming you have zombies or something similar to deal with, it seems likely settlements of survivors will gradually appear within high strong walls. The old Amish tradition of raising barns will be a useful skill to provide shelter and storage for your number, especially in the early days when simply getting under cover takes priority. Remember, the Amish may seem quaint to us with our iphones and our sky tv but come the apocalypse they are already self -sufficient while those of us who have become dependent on the walmart family are going to have to learn all over again. Not so amusing now are they?

Country Music/The Blues
Ok, lots of people can play the guitar (I can’t, but lots can). But what will you play to your ragged group of survivors? You need something that says ‘shared pain’ but can also say ‘we are still alive so let’s dance’. Country Music is the music of pain but can be easily turned to cheerful stompy dancing tunes. You may not like it, but this is the music you will need to keep everyone going after the apocalypse.

It’s also worth nailing the old 12 bar blues, for when a member of your team buys the farm, or you find yourself facing certain death alone. It may seem frivolous, but music is important to any society and both these genres are suited to lone acoustic guitar and the end of the world as we know it.

Making armour.
Yup, it’s the apocalypse folks, time to get medieval! A forge can provide weapons, protection, tools and a lot of heat as it goes. It’s a useful thing to get going if you are able to settle somewhere at least over winters. Yes it’s a risk, staying in one place, all that smoke, but still, all those cars are just scrap metal now, maybe it’s time to do something useful with them.

Honeybadger out.

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