Prepping for Death

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on February 18, 2018

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Once you become fully aware of collapse, it tends to make you a little crazy.  There is nobody I have come across in the collapse blogosphere who isn't somewhat nuts.  Mind you, this definition of "nuts" is being measured against what is considered normal inside an insane society, so in reality it may not be nuts at all.

The insanity exhibited by Kollapsniks comes in many forms, and the symptoms and behaviors that result also vary widely.  The most common probably is depression, you see that in posting of all kinds on many websites.  Talk of suicide among these people is fairly common. Some websites like Nature Bats Last & Reddit r/collapse and have such a severe problem with this they need to have Suicide Prevention Hotlines posted on the sidebar of the Homepage.  Denialism is another form of insanity that is prevalent.  There are numerous people who haunt collapse websites simply to try and refute any claim that Collapse is actually in progress.  They are obviously fully aware of it, but the coping mechanism here is just to deny every piece of evidence that becomes manifest.

There are other more subtle forms of insanity though also.  Many Kollapsniks become obsessive on certain topics, Renewable Energy, Bankster Corruption, Political Corruption, Geopolitical Conflict, Conspiracy Theory are a few examples of topics a given poster might obsess over.  Some obsess over more finely honed topics, like Precious Metals, the Stock Market, Marijuana Legalization or LGBTQ issues.  By focusing on a given area, this defense mechanism allows the person to "wall off" many of the other areas of collapse that would otherwise preoccupy them.  It is relatively lightweight insanity though, since it doesn't prevent the person from pursuing normal daily tasks, and they otherwise seem pretty normal.

Religion also is a form of insanity people will retreat into in one form or another as a means to cope with Collapse.  You get your Born Again Fundy Christians, Astrology believers, Radical Muslims,  Buddhists, Druids, New Age Atheists and many more systems of belief to latch onto.  If you are perturbed about Collapse Issues, there's a Religion out there for you to believe in that will salve your wounded soul!  Some of these religions are pretty innocuous, others are quite dangerous overall to the rest of society functioning around them.  They also come into conflict with each other, which can be a problem and makes things worse than they already are.  A mass psychosis takes over and any sort of reasonable dialogue between groups of believers becomes impossible.

The insanity can also take some very intense and dangerous forms as well, in the form of the Shoot-em-Ups and Postal events we see in ever increasing frequency.  The biggest EVAH here in the FSoA was the Vegas shooting, where as of last count close to 60 were DEAD and more than 400 wounded.  This shooter had a LOT of ammo!  He also planned well and put himself in a spot where he would be hard to take out, so he had a good hour's worth of shooting Ducks in a Pond.  So far, no motive for this insanity has been elucidated.  He was financially well to do, he was white and he was older in his 60s.  Not the typical demographic of a poor, brown young guy out spraying the bullets in the typical shoot-em-up.  Why did he SNAP?

Image result for canadian prepper Backing off the more dangerous types of insanity that can crop up, much more common and benign is Prepper Insanity.  You see this all over the Survivalist websites and Doomsteading Websites, where Kollapsniks cope with oncoming Collapse by either collecting and hoarding preps and/or moving "off-grid" onto a rural Doomstead to try and be ready to survive TEOTWAWKI.  These folks don't see themselves as NUTS, they see themselves as having a sane reaction to the insane world they are immersed in, but all their friends think they are nuts.  "WHAT!?!?  You're giving up a 6 figure job as an IT Manager to live on a subsistence permaculture farm in rural Maine?!?!?!"

I fit into this last category of people who have been driven insane by my knowledge of collapse.  It doesn't depress me, I have no issues there.  Shit in the world has always been fucked up for as long as I have been alive, this is just another Monkey Wrench (Spanner for you Brits) thrown into the works here you have to deal with if you want to stay alive and put food in your mouth for another day.  So in 2008 when I became "Collapse Aware" I became an Insane Prepper.  For a good 5 years straight, I bought just about every device and long term storable food you can dream up, and my digs are STUFFED with this supply.  My goal with this was to be able to survive what I call the "Zero Point", when everything crashes, the ATMs go down, JIT trucking fails, etc.  I figured if I could make it for a couple of years out in the bush and wait it out, most of the population would die off and then I could possibly hook up with other survivors to do a reboot.  Back then, I was a healthier specimen as a Homo Sap meat package.

Unfortunately, the last decade has seen an extreme decline in my health, and the possibility I could even survive a month out in the bush even with all my preps gets smaller by the day.  So about a year ago, my Prepping to survive collapse STOPPED.  I don't prep for that anymore, because it's a waste of good prepping time, not to mention money.  However, I am still insane, and still a Prepper.  So instead of Prepping on how I would LIVE through collapse, now I have been planning how to DIE during collapse.  Not sure exactly when this crossing over to the Great Beyond will occur, just as I am not sure precisely when SHTF Day will come to my neighborhood.  But as with trying to LIVE, in preparing to DIE  I don't want to be caught with my pants down unprepared.

Image result for last will and testament After my accident, I realized quickly how woefully unprepared I was to die.  I had no Last Will & Testament, and while I am by no means rich, I do have quite a few assets and ZERO debt.  I own several carz which while all old are also in good working order.  I don't use them much, but I have them.  I have a supply of Preps any prepper would salivate over.  They won't keep you going forever, but if you were on Puerto Rico with them you could go at least a year.  I also have some MONEY.  I won my Workman's Compensation case and got a decent settlement out of that.  I have my own savings and small inheritances I got when my parents went to the Great Beyond.  I spent some of this of course during periods of low income or unemployment, but most of it I still have.  I am a pretty penurious person overall so I don't waste my money too fast usually.

So the first thing that needed to get done was to write a Will and get it Notarized and Legal, which I did.  That made me feel a lot better.  Then I had to get my Executor familiar with all my stuff and where it is and how to distribute it properly after I croak.  This took a while to do, mainly because although I had people who agreed to execute the Will, most of them would not be able to get to Alaska to do the job and moreover they needed to get here first to go over everything, also something nobody has time for or wants to do really.  It's kind of depressing and morbid of course.  However, eventually I did get this done with a friend from my coaching years who is responsible and dependable, so I am confident the Will will be executed properly.

The next big worry for me as I contemplated oncoming DEATH was my Intellectual Property, of which there is a LOT more than my physical property.  I have been writing on the net for over 20 years, long predating my obsession with Doom.  The Diner by itself is a database currently approaching 5GB in size.  100s of 1000's if not 10*6 pages of text material.  After spending basically a lifetime putting together this material, do I want to see it vanish from the face of the earth the day I Buy My Ticket to the Great Beyond?  Of course not!  Even if my material is only appreciated by a few people now, I could become FAMOUS after I am DEAD!  lol.  So I wanted to insure that all my intellectual material isn't lost the day I Kick the Bucket, Buy the Farm, Push up Daisies, Take a Dirt Nap, Permanent Vacation…etc.

Figuring out how to do this has been a Work in Progress over the last 3 years.  The main body of work is here on the Doomstead Diner, so preserving that was my first concern.  However, the Diner is on a for pay server, so once the hosting company stops receiving money, the Diner gets shut down.  My quicky solution was to create a "DoomsteadDinerBeta" site on FREE WordPress space.  To that space I copied most of my articles through 2016 or so.  I haven't been updating it lately though.  This insures that the material is up for reading somewhere on the internet, until the Internet Goes Dark.  Which probably isn't that far off, IMHO the MOST would be 50 years, but I bet it's under 20.

Another solution for longer term storage would have been to print it all out on acid-free paper and store that somehow.  However, it's ridiculous and impossible logistically for many reasons.  The cost in paper and ink would have been ENORMOUS.  Then where to store all that paper while I still am alive?  I would need a whole new storage unit for that.  Then those boxes of paper would likely end up in landfill after I croak and all the paper chewed up by various microorganisms.  Paper books that did survive like the Bible did so not in their original manuscript, but in copies made over the millenia.  The oldest Bible we have still in existence is the Codex Sinaiticus, dated to the 4th Century AD.  That makes it 1700 years old.  It only lasted that long because it's been carefully preserved through the centuries.  So paper was not a choice here, at least not for everything.

Another issue is all my material is not text, there's a lot of Audio & Video in there also.  You can't print that out on paper.  I put a lot of time & energy into that stuff, I don't want it all POOF disappearing either when I am pushing up daisies.  Another means had to be found. The SOLUTION here was the latest in solid state data storage, Micro SD Cards.  One of these tiny suckers can store up to 128 Gigs of information if you buy an expensive one.  The Diner Database itself is only 5 Gigs!  Even adding in a good size sampling of my A&V, the file still only came up to 13 GB, so a 16 GB card was sufficient to store my entire life's work of intellectual property!  16 GB cards are down to $10 a pop.  That is well within the budget of even a Poor Person like myself!  So I set about the task of getting the material packaged up into a file to copy onto SD Cards for preservation. There is a PROBLEM here of course.  This digital media can be ZAPPED by an EMP, which if it doesn't come from a Nuke being dropped in the local vicinity will at some point come from the SUN☼ pitching out a nice Solar Flare directed straight at the earth, frying any microelectronics still floating around on the planet after the Age of Industrialization comes to a close.  So to protect them from that, I needed some sort of Faraday Cage.  What I got for that purpose were Aluminum Pill Capsules, designed to keep your medicines high and dry if you are white-water kayaking or doing some other adventure where important stuff you don't want to get dunked needs to be protected.

A second major issue cropped up in researching how long data will last on and SD Card.  Not long, according to the geeks, maybe 10-20 years.  I'm not entirely convinced of that though, since I have some very old SD cards I can still read off of.  Anyhow, since nobody is ever going to read the data anyhow, this doesn't much matter.  The last imprint on these cards before they randomize to oblivion will be the data I drop on them.  I also hope in the event Alien Archaeologists do locate the capsule, they will have technology that allows them to retrieve the last stored data on the card. Nevertheless, to resolve this problem and get more data into the final package, I went back to the old standby of data storage, PAPER & INK.  The small capsule doesn't have room for more paper though, so I determined I would need a BIGGER BOAT!  For this purpose, I purchased Stainless Steel Double-Walled Hot Food Thermoses.  I would have prefered Aluminum, but I couldn't find the right size container in aluminum, so I had to go with Stainless Steel.  It should still be OK though, since it will be coated several layers thick in Polyurethane, then further in concrete and stone.  More on that later in capsule preparation.  This container gives me room for more like 20-30 pages of printed text (estimate, haven't worked this one out yet in finalization), which is still not a lot but I can detail a lot more than I did on the one page I got to squeeze into the smaller capsule!

This now is where we move from being semi-normal and merely wishing to preserve your Life's Work to getting flat out INSANE.

After the Will though was the issue of my Corporeal Remains, AKA my CORPSE.

Even prior to considering how I might preserve my Intellectual Property, I started worrying about what would be done with my Corporeal Remains?  Buried or Cremated?  Where to drop the Corpse or Ashes on the Planet to rest until the SUN goes Red Giant?  In terms of location, I more or less settled on the cemetery where my mom is buried in Springfield, MO, although there are some caveats to this which I will get to later.  I bought a plot there which cost me $1000, not too bad.  For this price, I get stone placement (not the stone, gotta order that separate) and "perpetual care".  Which amounts I think to mowing the lawn around your stone and weeding, but I doubt either will be done after TSHTF.  However, neither do I imagine the stone will be moved.  Whatever population is left is unlikely to be messing around much in cemeteries.

Image result for tombstone Getting the stone I WANT has proven to be the biggest obstacle so far, and I am still working on that one.  I don't want one of those typical gravestone markers, I want something unique and distinctive.  I have a few different designs I have drawn up, but finding someone to cut the stones and then getting them to Missouri for placement is the real bear.  I'll update on the stones when I finally get them ordered and I know what I will be getting.  There is about a 4 month lag time also from when you order to when the stones are shipped out of the quarry, so if I want to actually see them I will have to stay alive long enough for that. lol.

At the beginning, all I was going to drop in the capsules was my Intellectual Property on the Micro-SD Card and samples of my own DNA from hair clippings.  However the more spacious Burial Chamber of the larger capsules gave me room to think about more things I should try to preserve for All Eternity.

The first thing that I added were 4 Scrolls on Acid Free 100% Cotton paper which give a Reader's Digest history of the existence of Homo Sap on Earth, from the beginning of life until the End of the Age of Oil.  I did this on paper just in case if the capsules are ever found in the distant future and the finders do not have access to computers, they will have some idea of what the contents of the capsule contain.  Of course, they will also need to be able to decode and read English. lol.  The reason this information comes in Scroll form is this is the best way to pack it in the Capsules.  You roll up the scroll, then when you insert into the capsule it automatically expands to the internal diameter of the capsule with no wasted space.  I found I could fit 4 of them in and still have room down the center for all the rest of the stuff I wanted to include.

The scrolls are cut from typical 8.5 X 11" paper, each one 2" wide.  Each page will make 3 scrolls.  So I had to get the entire History of Life on Planet Earth down to ONE PAGE of prose!  That's some serious Reader's Digest work there! lol  I reduced the size of the font to the minimum my computer offers up, 6pt.  After printing, I need my Reading Glasses to be able to make it out, it's like the tiny instructions booklets you get with electronics these days.  The 4th Scroll is on Photographic paper, same dimensions and has 4 pics on it of…ME!  This so that in case the Alien Archaeologists of the future can't read the SD Card they will be able to see what a Homo Sap looked like.  The card holds many more pics of life at the End of the Age of Oil on Planet Earth for them to peruse.

As mentioned above, I added to the original capsule arrangement a larger arrangement to contain more scrolls.  This container is still a work in progress and the total amount of word content on acid-free paper yet to be determined.  I want to get the small capsules finished before I embark on trying to edit up and format text-on-paper that is supposed to last for All Eternity.

However, TONS of room is still available even in the small capsule after the SD Card, the DNA container and the 3 Scrolls were placed, so what to add to it to fill up the space? Here I decided to add stuff to help preserve Life on Earth in the future.  I added small capsules with heirloom seeds and edible mushroom spores in them.  I ordered Tardigrades from Carolina Biological Supply, dessicated them and dropped them in another capsule.  Tardigrades were the best option for trying to preserve animal life since they can survive temperatures close to Absolute Zero and radiation levels in the 1000s of roentgens.  They won't survive being roasted when the SUN goes Red Giant though.

All of these items I am carefully packaging up to last as long as possible in my lifetime "Treasure Chest", which gets buried with my casket and my meat package remains in a reinforced concrete vault chamber 6 feet under my Tombstone marker.  Why am I putting all this time and effort into trying to preserve this stuff? Well, if this stuff is ever to be found, it's likely to be a long time between the time it gets buried and the time it gets dug up.  Who will dig it up?  IMHO, only two possibilities exist for this, either it will be Alien Archaeologists in the far future doing research on failed civilizations or it will be a NEW SPECIES of the Genus Homo, which I have labelled "Homo Dinerus".  This species will evolve from the remnants of the current human population after the Dieoff levels out, with maybe 10,000 Human Souls or 1000 Breeding Pairs left alive after all the nuclear bombs are detonated and all the coastal cities are under 30m of seawater.

I consider both of these outcomes to be low probability events though, after the chest goes in the ground with my meat package I don't expect it will ever be read by ANYBODY.  Sort of like old blogs, which are all up here on the net at the moment but nobody ever reads them. lol.  So what's the POINT?

The point is that the organization of data from your mind, unlike your corporeal remains is eternal, at least if you can find something long lasting to store it on and then periodically re-copy it onto new media.  It symbolizes your unique existence here on Earth at one brief interval in the space-time continuum.  In terms of my own Spiritual Beliefs, I believe keeping all the intellectual material together will help my Immortal Soul maintain its integrity when I leave my corporeal shell and cross the Great Divide.  When I am reincarnated, I will have a greater memory for the things that occured during this iteration of my immortal soul on Earth.  At least that is how my Theology works.  If I am right, I gain a lot from this, if I am wrong I lose nothing.  So it's worth the effort, even if it seems NUTS to all my friends.

Next week I hope to be ordering the first of several stones that will serve as marker and monument for my Eternal Resting Place.  Of all the media I have available to me, Granite is the most long lasting of all, so with my marker I sought also to deliver a message across the ages.  Of necessity since the total surface area is not that large, the information needs to be conveyed in a symbological form rather than with Words, although I do have a decent number of words inscribed on the stones along with the symbols.  In my next installment of this series, I will Unveil the Tombstone, which is an homage to Civilizations of the Past and the Eternal Beauty of Mathematics.


11 Responses to Prepping for Death

  • rob de laet says:

    Thank you! This ticks all the intellectual, spiritual, emotional boxes! You are a great writer. Who knows the nature of reality, the game is endlessly fascinating, though I think Life in the end is much stronger than we can possibly imagine right now!

    • RE says:

      Thanks! 🙂  I do my best.  Lately it has been hard to write and getting the blogs composed has been a big effort.  I’ll keep going though as long as I can.


  • Tim says:

    Wow, will the tombstone be like a Rosetta Stone?  

  • goocy says:


    Put your SD card into a Raspberry Pi, add a touchscreen display, and mount all of that into a cavity in the back of your gravestone.

    Set the RPi to auto-start a browser that loads the Doomstead Diner from SD.

    Add a small solar cell on top of the stone, and make everything waterproof.

    Add four (EMP-protected) backup cards to the cavity so people will be able to repair this setup.

    Final step: put a chair next to the stone, as an invitation to sit down and browse.

    As long as it's sunny, people will be able to read your manifest.

    • RE says:

      Nice ideas, but the cemetery has some rules.  I couldn’t put exposed solar cells on the tombstone for instance, only Granite is allowed.  I can slip stuff inside the stones though, which I am doing . 🙂  I also will have various viewing devices buried with me, mainly my large collection of smart phones.

      I can’t drop a chair in here because I only have a 36″ X 14″ space to work with, and other shit I dropped in takes up all the room.  Some folks do drop down stone benches though.


  • Skip says:

    I hear that M-Disks last a very long time as long as they are not exposed to extreme temps.  I'm not sure about the EMPs.

    I prefer being buried "Fargo style" (after I'm long gone of course).  In the movie Fargo the "funny looking" bad guy was fed into a wood chipper after being snuffed by his cohort in crime.  I would like to have what's left of me used as compost.  Some mind numbing religions consider cremation a sin.  I wonder what they would say about a wood chipper.  

    • RE says:

      Discs are a very good storage medium as they are Optical and EMPs don’t affect them.  I am including discs in my Burial Vault.  They don’t fit in the stones too well.  They should last quite some time short of being at Ground Zero for a Nuclear Blast or the grave  being covered over in a Lava Flow.  No Volcanoes in the vicinity of the grave, so that is not too much of a worry.


  • Nice post and I wish you a great death, a prepper worthy! By the way, do you have a name on your collapse, which is something between fast and slow? Deflabolic collaps came to my mind.

    Most people try to deny collaps, just like with death. Why not face it and make the best of it? You are a bold person!

    • RE says:

      I’ve never tried to come up with a word to describe it, no.  Deflabolic Collapse is a good suggestion though.


  • Thanks for sharing this

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