Monday, January 20, 2014
Gung Ho. The Proactive Survivalist.
Basically, Sheridan got concerned about the way the society is developing, and he began to be uncomfortable with some trends in our culture that were becoming more pronounced. He has a wife and a small boy. What is the absolute, utter, irrevocable responsibility of a man with a family? To protect them and provide for them. There aren't any nuances to it, it's one of life's rules not subject to interpretation.
Realizing he was short on skills, Sheridan set out to acquire the knowledge and equipment he felt he needed to come up to scratch. This book is a description of his efforts to do that, and runs the gamut from Cody Lundin's survival course to learning car theft and lock picking from a former Hispanic gang banger and jail bird. The different episodes are tied together by a fictional account of disasters he guides his family through. I think he is describing dreams he had but I'm not sure. Either way, it's an effective mechanism for keeping your interest in what could have been just a laundry list of "and then I went to" narratives. The Kindle version is very cheap, so I would recommend reading the book the first time by downloading it, if you have that capability.
I've done a post on this book , Emergency, before. But because it fits in the Gung Ho! category, I wanted to revisit it.
Neil Strauss was not a survivalist when he started doing his research for this book. He was an author who wanted to take advantage of what he saw as a growing market for survivalist literature. By the time he finished with his research, he was a hard core survivalist and a believer.
Like Sheridan, he was motivated by the feeling that he could not take care of himself in a major disaster, let alone his girl friend. (The more you read about the girl friend, the more taking care of you realize she needs).
He started taking courses, and it's interesting to see how closely Sheridan's choices in acquiring skills paralleled the decisions Strauss made. I don't want to steal the books thunder, but I will say you get your money's worth. What I found particularly interesting was the conversion of a typical urban thirty something into a believer.
Both of these books are about hard chargers who decided they needed to get up to speed on the self sufficient lifestyle. They rate the Gung Ho appellation. Gung Ho is Chinese, and the literal translation means working together. In the Marine Corps, any hard working , highly motivated individual is said to be "Gung Ho." These two guys are that, without doubt. The books represent money well spent, because you will almost certainly come away with some thoughts worth considering in your own planning cycle.