Monday, February 18, 2008

List of People to be Friends with

This has been on my mind for a while now, and whenever I thought about how long the list would be, I got tired before starting so I never got around to do it.
But I guess it is important, it does make life easier, and it may make the difference in other, more critical matters.
The list has no particular order of importance, though everyone can well imagine that some “contacts” are more critical than others.

When the word “survivalist” is mentioned, most people imagine the bearded hermit living in the middle of nowhere, caressing his shotgun while he giggles like a lunatic. Or at the other end of the spectrum, some guy tightly winded up, that cant keep a normal conversation for 5 minutes without talking about the latest conspiracy theory, such as the relationship between Area 51 …Illuminati …Teletubbies …

Ok, so no. You need to be an outgoing person, someone that knows how to make acquaintances, if not friends.
You don’t need to be best buds, you wont be giving away your daughter for crying out loud, all you need is to be nice enough so as to be able to ask for a favor if you ever need one, and be ready to do the same in return.

Doctor/Pharmacist: Should be pretty obvious. You need someone that you can trust for health matters. But try going a bit further. You may one dat need something more than the average patient(doc relationship.
Ask about his/her weekend, how the kids are. Again, you aren’t looking for a best friend, just to knock down the barrier in case you ever have to ask for a favor, ask for some extra subscription meds, antibiotics.
Having a good relationship with someone that can get you meds is something you should try working on right now, at the very least try to be in good terms with the pharmacist guy.

The guy in the pharmacy near by will sell me almost everything, even without a doctor’s note.

It’s also important to have a good relationship with a doctor in case you need to ask for help during weekends, holydays, getting his/her cell number, etc.

Cops: You need them to know what’s going on, sometimes stuff that doesn’t get spread through the news to avoid panic, or simply because of censorship. You’ll know what’s really going on in your neighborhood by talking to your local police.

You need to be in good terms with them so that they respond fast during emergencies, watch over your house with at least a bit of extra interest.
If you end up shooting in self defense, a cop friend in your district may save you a LOT of trouble.
I know of a case where it made the difference, in an attempt of robbery, a switchblade next to the downed bad guy’s body…yup, you definitely need a cop on your side.

A lawyer: Hey, when you need one you’ll need him bad. Have a good one and his number always handy. Try dropping an accountant to the mix to.

Someone in the black/gray market:
He can save you a lot of money. And when things start getting either hard to find or too expensive, he’s the guy you’ll want to speak with.

Currency broker: Someone that buys and sells different currencies or precious metals.
I have 3 guys from which I buy/sell. When one tries to screw me over, I go to the other one, that way none of them things he’s got me tied, so I always end up getting a more or less fair deal.
These guys buy and sell pesos, Euros, USD, reales (Brazil) gold, silver, and even jewelry gold, having market values for all of them.

Gun dealers: Pretty similar to the previous one. I have couple with whom I deal most often. I deal with the one that gives me the best deal, but I try to distribute the shopping as well as I can, to keep the “friendship” up, so I’ll know of any good deals either one has to offer, the kind that only “customers” get to know of.
Found some pretty cool stuff thanks to that.

Artisan / Craftsman:
To help you on various projects. Hopefully it will be someone that works well with steel, leather, cordura, and plastic.
He can fix gear for you, make equipment up that you might have thought of, or designed yourself.

Collector: Sometimes you need a bit of extra leverage, and it’s work you wont want to do yourself.
Believe me, it’s pretty hard to collect when almost ½ the country is broke.
So this isn’t just a Hollywood thing, you’ll need a good collector for doing businesses, specially collecting rent.
Don’t go for the aggressive maniac, you need someone that is persuasive, gets your money, but wont hurt the person in the process.
You need him healthy to keep on paying, and to avoid legal problems.

A bit similar to the Craftman, but the machinist specializes on precise metal work. You’ll need him for gun accessories, help with projects, etc.

Someone that can get you fresh food if it starts getting scarce, or find you good deals during the good times.

Gov. Employee: Yes, it’s like sleeping with the enemy, but someone that knows the ways of the “Dark Side” can save you from a lot of trouble, save you from otherwise month/year long waiting periods, just to mention one.

How to make “friends”?
Try being friendly generally speaking. I’m a naturally quiet person, I don’t like talking much with strangers, just not that kind of person. But I saw it for the flaw that it was, and I’ve been working hard in changing that.
Try to understand that not everyone thinks like you ( specially if you are a prepper/survivalist!) So try speaking their language , bite your tongue whenever you want to say things such as “That ‘s the most sheepish piece of brain washing crap I’ve ever heart”. I find myself avoiding saying that many times a day, but it’s important to be able to fit.

I’m getting pretty good results lately when I offer to take people shooting.
Its good for making bonds, those that are interested later appreciate it after you take them. You “converted” someone and maybe made a friend/contact, so it’s a dobule plus.

Anyway, this list is pretty short and missing a lot, but you get the idea.



Ryan said...

Good post! I think we've got a lot of talking about TEOTWAWKI but this much more realistic situation gets missed.

The doc/ pharmacist and cop are most important. Also consider prosecutors or judges if practical. A friendship with one of those 3 will often fix a questionable situation or miss understanding.

Anonymous said...

FerFAL, great post! I think relationships before and after SHTF is much overlooked. What are your thoughts on church groups?

In my own situation I think we would gravitate to our church friends and groups for mutual support, and trading of skills and goods. Also our immediate neighbors. I rarely see survival postings about church networking. Was this relevant in your experience in argentina?

BTW, thanks for the great blog. I have followed you through Squirrel land (I left, too), other forums and SuvivalBlog to finally find your own blog. One of the most dramatic writing you had was on the pistol versus the rifle in day to day survival.

Of all the real world postings on survivalism, YOU ARE THE MAN!

-- NWPilgrim/Run&Shoot