solarbird: (Lecturing)
[personal profile] solarbird

The new year is here, which means it’s time for the annual BIG CLEAN! But – living in earthquake territory and surrounded by active volcanoes – it’s also about emergency prep! Because it’s wise to have right the hell now, one-day, and two-or-three days plans for getting out.

(Some people also talk about having a month’s notice plan? But really, that’s a move, and I think it’s silly to think of that as ’emergency.’ Even one week isn’t a whole lot worse, even if you have a lot of junk – most of what people own that takes more than a week to sort out doesn’t really need to be sorted out.)

So! Let’s say you have one day, or worse, Mt. Rainier has just gone up and the Cascadia fault just tripped and everything is completely pear-shaped but a rescue boat is outside. For someone like me, who creates a lot of content, the key to getting out quickly without massive losses is already be ready.

What’s that mean? Well, you hear a lot about the three-day bag, of course. (At least, you do in Cascadia. It’s not really adequate, you should be prepared for at least a week, but three days is a start. Is this just us?) The three-day bag is one you can grab and take out the door as the building is falling down around you.

You should have data in that too. At very least, a recent backup of key data. For example: we back up our servers to USB flash drives. This sounds hilarious but it’s actually pretty good, because it means we can swap the flash drives monthly, and have a completely offline set of backups as well. And the monthly swap means they never have data-loss issues related to being unpowered for months.

Where do those offline backup flash drives live? The three-day pack.

If you have your creative works scattered across a bunch of formats – by which I mean other-than-digital formats – scan your stuff. And have your digital work collected – at least in backup form – in one place, and let that live in the three-day bag too. (But don’t use flash drives for this, they drop storage over time if left unpowered. They aren’t a good archive format.)

Alternatively, back your data up somewhere off-site. But that’s not always the best idea, for a lot of reasons – bandwidth being one of many, but there are many. If you can do it, great.

So as part of this year’s Big Clean, I’ve been getting my data situation together. I’ve made an image of my recording archives, and I’ve ripped all those old Commodore and Amiga floppies, and right now, and I’m scanning those old fanzines I put out back in the 90s, because why not? All that old stuff’s so small it can live in backed-up archive directories on my laptop, and the laptop is effectively part of the three-day kit anyway.

This is me, following my own advice, and being generally ready, like y’should. I was hoping to be done with all of this by the end of the 2nd, New Year’s Day Observed Bank Holiday Whatever, but I’m not quite done. But I’m close.

Anyway, here’s my RIGHT THE HELL NOW list:

  • three-day pack (yours should have a solid week of meds, if any)
  • laptop
  • instruments (at least the zouk)
  • phone
  • purse (which includes passport)

That gets me almost all of my creative output, food, meds, srs bsns ID, and so on. If you don’t have a passport – or passport card – you should have one if you can afford it. It’s better ID than a driver’s license or ID card, and doesn’t get questioned.

My ONE DAY’S NOTICE list – basically like going on tour with less gear but more paperwork. All of the above plus:

  • one suitcase of clothes
  • all hard drives
  • the One Day Warning box (important legal papers, pretty much)
  • studio tablet and custom studio hardware (one box max)

Anything more starts getting into “well, now, it’s just a move,” but with 2-3 days, I’d start with more general lab and studio gear, and favourite books and art.

For an emergency, doesn’t that sound luxurious? I’d have that luxury – all that time – because my Right the Hell Now and One Day plans are together. If you live anywhere that can get Abruptly Dangerous? Yours should be too.

Mirrored from Crime and the Blog of Evil. Come check out our music at:
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Date: 2017-01-03 07:02 pm (UTC)
maellenkleth: (flyingslabs)
From: [personal profile] maellenkleth
This isn't that far from the 'two bag concept' they taught us lo these many years ago. 'Two', not 'three', because few people have the luxury of organisationally-assured mechanical transport. Shoulder bag and ruck are quite enough to have to hump on foot. Lightweight is lovely.

Anyway, a few small additions [am sure you know all this, because, but perhaps those of your readers who didn't attend Foxhole U will appreciate the hints]:

1) the smallest, lightest, water purifier you can find/afford/acquire. Even the little ones that are basically an overgrown sippy-straw will do the job. **Never** assume that drinking water will be safely available, or that it won't come with unpleasant conditions attached (as happened in New Orleans evacuation).

2) paper strip map(s) of the route from starting point to gathering point (or ultimate destination(s). Figure out what the scale of the map is, and mark it graphically somewhere handy.

3) pack a small protractor and a pencil with your map.

4) use NOAA website **now** [ https://ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag-web/#declination ] to determine magnetic declination (difference of true/magnetic north) for your area. For example: you start out at 15 degrees 53 minutes East (more or less). Write this on your map, and use the protractor to lay down magnetic north lines on the map.

5) most important: pack a compass. Doesn't need to be fancy as long as you know your declination (in your case, add 16 degrees to compass reading, to get true reading).

- - -

I know, this sounds ubergeeky, but knowing how to navigate off-highway is darned useful, and a compass is essential for direction-finding when the skies are obscured (ash/dust/smoke/rain). It's way too easy to get turned-around, and in a truly bad situation, you probably **don't** want to join the throngs trudging up the autobahn.

I keep a set of pacing-beads on a piece of old shoelace. Slide a bead from one end every hundred paces (150 metres). Slide them back and slide one off the other end every thousand paces (a klick and a half). Keeps your brain going, anyway.

Oh, I also keep my backup flash-drives in a little old tin bandage-box, because EMP is a thing to be reckoned with and I know better.

Date: 2017-01-03 07:15 pm (UTC)
numb3r_5ev3n: Mettaton NEO from Undertale (Default)
From: [personal profile] numb3r_5ev3n
I had something like this going, but it fell by the wayside. I need to get in the habit again. And I just got some shiny new USB drives for Christmas!

Date: 2017-01-03 07:21 pm (UTC)
maellenkleth: catbus (catbus)
From: [personal profile] maellenkleth
Ah, yes: one more thing -- make a couple of photocopies of your medical prescriptions (if any), and keep them in a plastic zip-bag (so that they stay dry). Mine lives in the inside pocket of the lovely old Gortex coat that the Queen gave me (nice rain-proof coat, but she chose the colour), next my bits and scraps of maps. Old habits die hard, thankfully.

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