Over this past weekend, when the news quietly hit the wire that the Colonial gas pipeline was hacked, I told my wife to go top off our tanks, plus our lawn mower’s reserve. This was Saturday, well before anyone in the general public had any idea of what was about to happen. But I didn’t need a crystal ball to see where things were probably going to go: even for a sleepy weekend news story, the media was downplaying it. And so, because of that soft tone, I bet that the pipeline wouldn’t be back online by that Sunday, as they kept promising.
By now, most of the East Coast has learned that that pipeline supplies half the gasoline to this side of the country. But had they had any interest in the way their world works… they would have already know that fact, as my family already did. And although I warned more than a few friends on Sunday and Monday, when it was apparent the pipeline might not be fixed by this coming weekend, to top off their tanks, few did so. They thought it sounded concerning but really, how bad could it get? And who has the time to worry about these things?
After a year of disruption, you’d think most normies could try to stay ahead of the curve. This is especially true when they’re warned well ahead of time and when the information is right in front of them. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that there were only two possibilities in this situation: either they got the pipeline up and running or they didn’t. And that there would be shortages if they didn’t, not only from decreased supply but also likely, increased demand. However, on Tuesday night, last night, I received a number of frantic texts from those same friends, freaking out about the fact that they were nearly out of gas and couldn’t get any, since they had ignored my warnings. And they were all rushing out to fill as many spare tanks as they could buy.
Welcome to the pandemonium: where the majority of the public prefer to act like terrified children who can’t take realistic steps beforehand to safeguard themselves from clear and glaring emergency pressures. Yet, on the same token, they’re petrified of the flu and ready to hoard toilet paper at the drop of a hat, despite toilet paper not being a necessity by any measure. This, my friends, is pure, unadulterated reactionism fueled by academicians, the media, and politicians. Real problems, severe societal issues, are downplayed and hidden, but the most trivial, sometimes commonplace events are used to whip populations into an absolute frenzy.
Is there any better symbol for our times than a fat idiot in a useless mask a year into a flu scare, manically rushing to a gas station with no fuel, to fill up whatever they can find?
I’ve visited five gas stations this morning and the Costco one is the first to have gas.
The line is insane. pic.twitter.com/fMfuIMNlJ7
— Alicia Devine, Photojournalist (@alicia_c_devine) May 11, 2021
But one text from a friend stood out to me this week. And that was the one where they asked how I knew way ahead of time that there was going to be severe gas shortages. Certainly, I told them about reading between the lines when it comes to the way officials speak. Still, while you can almost set your clock by how those in charge up-play or downplay a story, some dissidents, going the opposite direction of the public, get lost in the rabbit hole of the prepping lifestyle. Often, as I’ve seen first hand, this can consume their lives and backfire when they can’t handle regular emergencies because they spent so much time preparing for an alien invasion that never comes. I made sure to warn my friend about this unfortunate possibility.
No, the way to stay ahead of the curve isn’t complicated. It’s not a matter of buying every prepper item you see or planning for a nuclear Armageddon. Instead, once you’re paying attention when others aren’t, as I was to the news over the weekend, you only need be a few, reasonable steps ahead. How do you accomplish this feat without getting sucked into that black-hole of survivalist paranoia? Your planning should always be just far enough long that you should be a little embarrassed to tell someone about it. It might even seem a bit silly to you really but not totally bonkers to someone you might tell. This way, you know you’re out in front but not too far out in front that you sound or act like a crazy person.
Above all, however, one other essential idea has kept me sleeping soundly at night in a culture of pandemonium. And that’s how, when the crowd is preparing for meltdown or catastrophe, you can usually bet that whatever they’re concerned about isn’t even real or it’s being pushed for an agenda. Or when they’re almost oblivious to a clearly discernible cause-and-effect event, you know that you probably want to be getting ready. Or at least pay attention. All things considered though, you never want to be the idiot running around like his hair is on fire, whether there’s a real emergency or simply one fabricated by the ruling class.
At the same time, being ahead of the curve gives you more time to contemplate what might happen next, instead of behaving like a scared child. And although the gas shortage looks like it may be over in the next day or two, we can still ask the question no one’s yet asking about this event.
And that question is: what happens if there’s a gas shortage so severe and prolonged… that the food trucks run out of gas?