When the Drum Beats – Surviving Urban Unrest

First there is black.
Then there is light and
All the colors of jazz.
And there is sound in these colors.
A wailing trumpet drips cool
Violet, threaded with smoke.
Heavy blue lumbers from the bass
While the clarinet temps
And tantalizes in hot pink counterpoint.
But the drum
The drum beats blood red.”
Poem by Doug Moench from the Comic Moon Knight #26 (1982)

emergency survival bag

How to Make Your Own Emergency Grab Bag

Have you ever watched a first-time mother turn up at a dinner party?

She’s got this bag of “things”.

Extra diapers for those disastrous overflow occasions. Specially scented hand wipes, anti-rash creams, the wireless two-way radio spy device, and a spare blanket because the place might have a draft.

She’s taken the time to equip herself for every eventuality.

One might say that young mothers fit into a class of prepper that excludes emergency stores of ammo, but might include an occasional conspiracy theory, like whether it’s okay to vaccinate your little bundle of mucus.

apartment security tips

How to Choose a Safe Rental Home

Safely choosing a rental home can be tough. I recall my first experience of renting a cottage on a plot of land.

It ticked all the right boxes.

The place was affordable, the people in the main house were nice, there was lots of space and we could even get a dog.

My rookie brain glossed over the obvious signs that we were in the process of making a significant mistake. As the landlord shuffled around the cottage rubbing his hands together, I accepted his assurance that the area was safe.

Confirmation bias ensured that I ignored the alarm system, security gate, previous hacksaw marks on the burglar bars, and my gut-feel about the landlord.

I signed the lease.

The first incident was a burglary when we went on holiday. Our ever-competent South African criminals simply unbolted the badly installed security gate and broke the frame off the door.

Then there was the brutal home invasion that changed my life forever. 

Why Start a Neighborhood Watch

Why Start a Neighborhood Watch Program?

You live in a high crime area. What does that look like? 

If it looks anything like where I grew up, the streets are empty at night. 

People were once neighborly, but that’s now a distant memory. 

I remember when the walls went up. They used to be about waist high. They’re now at least two meters tall topped with clicking electric fences or razor wire.

Three Levels of Situational Awareness

The Three Levels of Situational Awareness

“I just knew it”,

“You knew what”?

“I was almost in a car accident today, luckily I had a sixth sense it coming at me, and I got out of the way in time”,

“What are you talking about, you think you’re some kind of a clairvoyant”?

“No, listen. As usual I was late for work and I trying to get my makeup on, and I was about to pass through that intersection, you know the one next to the diner with the creepy clown”?

“You mean the one that looks like Pennywise the Clown”?