Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Be Ready When the Sh*t Goes Down

So what do you get when you let an MMA fighter write a book about how to survive the apocalypse? When said fighter is Forrest Griffin you get "Be Ready When the Sh*t Goes Down: A Survival Guide to the Apocalypse". What can I say? The guy is a character. If you know anything about him then you probably have a pretty good idea of what to expect from this book. He's got his own brand of self deprecating humor. He's also extremely offensive and it's pretty obvious that he doesn't care who he pisses off. The fact that I found this book in the comedy section of Barnes & Noble should give you a good idea of what to expect.

Before you pick up this book you've got to understand what I mean by "offensive". The book is loaded with sexual innuendo and toilet humor. He swears a lot (he even makes a point to use a different swear word for every letter of the alphabet). He pulls no punches against organized religion. In fact, he devotes an entire section to founding your own religion after the apocalypse. He takes shots at everyone from fatties living in mom's basement to meathead jocks.

The book itself is a very easy read. It's loaded with personal anecdotes, stupid little pictures (some of him and some that must have been drawn by him), silly footnotes and other tidbits of wisdom. If you're as riddled with ADD as I am then it only takes a few paragraphs before you're reading the words on the page without actually absorbing any of the information. His style proves to be a very effective way to keep the reader engaged.

So is any of the information actually useful? While the book has whole sections that describe off the wall, totally ridiculous, unfeasible scenarios like the organizing your own religion section that I previously mentioned (ok so that's probably actually feasible under the right circumstances), how to kill a giant wolf in the event of Ragnarok (heed the editor's warning before that section) or how to milk a giraffe from the back of a motorcycle it does contain enough useful information to be worth a read. However, if you're a seasoned survivalist/prepper you won't find much new, useful information here.

So what can you expect from the book? It has it's serious moments. It covers bugging out, what to put in a BOB, hotwiring a vehicle, basic self defense moves, basic firearm handling and other cookie cutter survivalist stuff. None of it is very in depth but he provides enough information that you get the gist of it. The "how shit will go down" section is the part that most interested me. Some of the scenarios were completely ridiculous but most of them were actual viable SHTF scenarios that were portrayed very accurately. This is probably the most useful part of the book because Forrest's style of writing does a good job of keeping people engaged and paying attention.

So who would I recommend the book to? If you have a friend or a kid in the 20-35 range who thinks that Family Guy and South Park are funny and who can tell you who Forrest Griffin is then they'd probably get a kick out of it. It might even be enough to get them to think seriously about prepping if they're not already doing it. Then again the book is so loaded with humor a lot of readers probably won't take it seriously. That's too bad because it's obvious that Forrest has done his share of thinking about the topic. Maybe he'll get through to a few people.


Anonymous said...

In a true SHTF situation you cannot trust strangers and even some people you know. I would not hurt a flea (in normal life) but after TSHTF I expect life to be more like a kill or be killed situation. In such a circumstance I would not allow an alpha type or a macho type to live. In fact I would be equally afraid of the smooth smiling sneaky type. The author may be smart enough to understand this but I'm bettng his over confidence has worked so well in the past that he would fail to appreciate his weakness. My suggestion to anyone in a post SHTF situation is when someone like this shows up or is just "around" is to be inconspicious even weak but at the first opportunity to pop him. He intends to take what is yours and kill or enslave you and he is batter skilled and inclined to do it then you are and your only defense it to squash him like a bug immediately if not sooner.

The Urban Survivalist said...

Sigh. Not everyone who demonstrates strong leadership skills or a great deal of knowledge in important subjects is out to take all of your crap or enslave you. If SHTF and you decide to start whacking everyone who shows leadership potential then I think it's safe to say that you'll either quickly end up dead yourself or you'll be trying to figure out how to get by by yourself (hopefully the former).

This overrall attitude is a big reason why I think that trying to tough it out in the city isn't such a bad idea if you don't have a lot of friends and relationships in the country. When SHTF and the government is no longer a factor then having a deed in the middle of nowhere will do you no good if you show up and the locals decide not to honor it. Mob rule applies just as much in the boonies as it does in urban epicenters.

Anonymous said...

People skills are most under rated survival tools. Sadly, most think theirs are better then average, and few think they need improvement. Women have an advantage over men in this area. Luckily, I grew up in a big family. That helps.

-another anon guy.

Anonymous said...

Leadership skills! Are you serious? Lets set the stage: You and a few family members are tring to survive TEOTWAWKI and a younger stronger alpha male shows up with "leadership skills" and you think there is going to be a happy ending? If I'm responsible for my family I don't want any non-family people showing up at my door. I would evaluate and consider long time friends but no strangers even if they can walk on water. And ESPECIALLY if they have "leadership skills". I think Charles Manson and Hitler had leadership skills. It is impossible for two alpha males (and probably two alpha females) to share leadership when there is no over-riding law and order. One must kill or expell the other.
As for the "quickly end up dead" comment; in a real SHTF situation most will end up dead. 10% or less will survive. Don't glorify it, it will be a survival of the fittest/luckiest/smartest. If you think that includes recruiting professional fighters then I wish you luck.

The Urban Survivalist said...

Wow...this is just a book review. I don't even remember reading the part that says if someone like him shows up that you should bow down and follow his every command (although he might have said something like that tongue in cheek...the whole book is tongue in cheek). The way that some people think is pretty scary. I guess if what you're trying to survive is something like The Road then you'll be safer shooting first and asking questions later. In any situation but the most extreme, though, there will almost certainly be more benefit to being in a solid group than trying to get by in the way that you're suggesting.

Anonymous said...

A solid group does not include strangers and surely does not include aggressive strangers. I would not kill "everyone" but I would eliminate a stranger who didn't take the hint to move on or who gave me any suspicion at all that they had bad motives. The only advice I can offer is if someone invites you to leave and not come back that you do it. They just might feel the same as I do about this.

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Randy said...

Going to be putting up a review on my blog, hopefully this weekend.
I was really surprised at all the positive reviews of this info since I found many shortcomings in his approach. You at least didn't rubber stamp the info as good survival tactics.
Enjoy your blog
Prepared Christian