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This is a question The Apocalypse

Power cuts, internet outages, mild inconvenience to your daily lives - how did you cope? Tell us your tales of pointless panic buying and hiding under the stairs.

thanks, ringofyre

(, Thu 14 Jun 2012, 14:15)
Pages: Popular, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

This question is now closed.

Two Tribes
If you pay any attention at all to the warning posters at railways stations these days, you’d think that a beardy nutter with a lighter and a wonky sole on one of his trainers is all that’s needed to bring about loss of life on a hitherto unknown scale. The very same authorities that are sounding dire warnings of some nutter putting “mental” into “fundamental” were thirty years back noticeably more reticent about giving the public meaningful advice as to how to avoid getting irradiated by several hundred megatons of SS-20 payload which were pointing at our cities, towns and WMD sites at RAF Greenham Common.

Back when the Soviet Union was getting through premiers at a rate roughly comparable to the rate at which I got through Airfix kits, the Nine O’Clock News seemed to feature an endless parade of pictures of decrepit old men tagged with the word “hardline” who were in control of our destines. This worried ten year old me for two reasons, firstly my grandmother was equally as decrepit and old as the likes of Andropov and Reagan, yet each and every time a picture of either was on television, she’d announce to all present that Bing Crosby was on the box again. Secondly, I really didn’t like the sound of the word “hardline”.

Having sat through the horrific docu-drama of the day which featured Sheffield being nuked, I resolved to formulate my own plan for survival in event of the imminent nuclear catastrophe as simply leaning a spare door against a wall, lining it with sandbags and stocking it with six weeks of canned food might be difficult to accomplish within the given four minutes. Or was it three? I needed somewhere sturdy to shelter. As luck would have it, a short distance from my house there was a large underpass that was ran underneath the nearby A12 and thanks to the bollards at either end, it was closed to road traffic. Despite the underpass being covered in badly scrawled graffiti and smelling like a urinal, it looked sturdy enough not to collapse in event of a nuke falling on our nearest town, which lay three miles away.

After deciding on a shelter site, I took my BMX out of the shed and timed how long it would take me to ride from my house to the underpass. The results weren’t promising, none of the six practice runs I did that Sunday afternoon took anything less than four minutes and twenty seconds. I needed to find time somewhere. I figured that when the sirens sounded, David Finnan would be overcome by fear, religion and the resulting diarrhoea and thus wouldn’t come out of his house to beat me up if he saw me cycling down his road without permission, so I tried a couple more highly risky practice runs taking a short cut past his house, narrowly avoiding a beating on each occasion. Best time was three minutes, thirty eight seconds, which left me twenty two seconds after the sounding of the air raid siren for me to retrieve my bike from the shed and grab my survival kit. I would be safe.

Being ten years old, I put a lot of thought into what should go into the green canvas rucksack that would guarantee my survival, so I filled it with enough rations to get me through until the background radiation died down, together with one or two luxury items to help while away the hours and a deadly weapon to assist me fighting off the starving, radioactive hordes.

A year or so later, a bloke called Gorbachev rocked up announcing that he and his Soviet pals actually wanted to be mates with us after all. A big wall covered in barbed wire came down and a bloke called Yeltsin decided that there would be no more Soviet Union. Reagan spent his final years insisting that each face on the television was Bing Crosby and all the missiles were aimed at the north pole in the event of a careless trigger finger and that was that.

Not too long ago, whilst helping my parents move house I found myself in back in the dusty shed. It wasn't long before I shifted a pile of old tarpaulins and located the dusty green canvas rucksack and curiously rummaged through the contents. My cursory inspection of the decade old survival kit revealed the following contents:

2x bottles of raspberry flavour Panda Pops, with a sell by date of the 15th March 1985
4x packets of Smith’s Salt n’ Shake, sell by the 31st October 1984
1x tube of Trebor Refreshers, sell by date obscured by mildew
1x imitation Swiss Army knife with a blunt blade and missing toothpick and tweezers
2x Bananaman plasters
And finally, four pages hastily ripped from July 1984’s issue of Fiesta Magazine, sourced from the pile of similar publications I discovered underneath my older brother’s mattress.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 14:15, 12 replies)
The other day I was listening to this guy explain to me why the world was ending
He had this long list of reasons that he rattled off at quite a speed. He kept coming back to his point that the world was ending and how good he felt about it but he had a lot of problems with the phrase "it's the" forcing him to repeat himself and start the sentance all over again.

Silly baldy bloke.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 13:58, Reply)
Let's hope I'm on my period when the apocalypse starts.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 13:51, 5 replies)
A few weeks ago...
I'm working on Isle of Lewis and had to head into Stornoway to collect some stuff for the site. I'd just pulled into a garage for fuel when the air was torn apart by sirens coming from every angle.

It was the soundtrack to the end of the world and as a kid from the 'Threads' generation, Terror and panic were my first thoughts...

Never found out what it was all about, but they lasted for a few minutes....
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 12:38, 6 replies)
Every time I go shopping it's like the zombie apocalypse anyway....
that Romero bloke just made a documentary, really.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 12:11, Reply)
Tooled up for the zombie apocalypse
My central heating is wood fired. So I own a hatchet, a long handled axe, a splitting maul (it's a sledgehammer with an edge) and a chainsaw. Also they're all sharp & I'm a dab hand a using them

So if the coming zombie apocalypse is the slow moving dawn of the dead style ones. I'm sorted. If it's a the fast fuckers from 28 days later and the day of the dead remake. I'm heading for the hills
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 11:08, 1 reply)
Since I've got old
I respond to things a lot slower
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 10:59, 3 replies)
One upside to the World ending before Christmas
Is that we won't have to suffer another X-Factor winner getting the No.1 slot in the Top 40.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 10:58, Reply)
I'll be sorely disappointed
if the Apocolypse doesn't happen in December.

It'll mean I'll have to rush out and do some last minute Christmas shopping.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 10:49, Reply)
That's no moon.

(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 10:45, 3 replies)
Welwyn Garden City's train station
is accessed through the shopping centre. Disembarking during the morning commute, with all the shops closed, but the muzak on, in the company of other brain-dead drones, all shuffling on to our places of work, one could easily imagine that Romero's apocalypse is in full swing.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 10:45, 1 reply)
When driving through Bristol at 4am...
... on the way to an early flight, it is REQUIRED that you listen to the Godspeed You! Black Emperor album "F#A#∞"

Never have I been more happy to see Bristol Airport.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 9:43, 1 reply)
If Fozzy Bear died
it'd be the wokkawokkawokkalypse.

Or if they banned 1970s pornography I suppose.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 9:43, 2 replies)
I started playing Zombies, Run this month
And managed to convince one of my house mates that I was using it as genuine training for the inevitable zombie apocalypse, using this article: io9.com/5916048/how-a-zombie-outbreak-could-happen-in-real-life and the insistence that I would never, ever run under normal circumstances. They're getting the app now. Ahhh, fitness converts... one paranoid, gullible maniac at a time...

Slightly OT: Anyone else playing it? :D

EDIT: Link to the official one: www.zombiesrungame.com with iPod/Android links. :-)
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 9:23, 6 replies)
For the past 5 years I have moved often from student properties to grown up flats with real renting agents...
Every time I move, its not long before I start to assess my options for zombie apocalypse, being in Plymouth I consider that infection will probably reach here after places like London, Birmingham and Manchester, there is also a large military presence in the city and the Westcountry in general. However, I find myself laying there in bed thinking of the best way to secure the property, the best escape routes and where to head for.

I also find myself thinking of places to hide if the nuclear warning siren goes off at any time other than 11:30 Monday morning. There is a large nuclear sub base, weapons storage and both active and decomissioned naval craft, sometimes you become acutely aware that if the bombs fall, I live in a target area.

Tl;dr Bit paranoid and don't get out much.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 8:58, 3 replies)
If you need to practice for the zombie apocalypse. ...
This looks just the thing (bottom of page).

(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 8:28, Reply)
I've got a plan...
We're going to The Winchester
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 7:50, 5 replies)
The Auckland Tornado; May 2011
As it passed through Rosedale, it missed me (at work), my kids (at school) and my wife (at home) each by less than 500m.

I was in a basement full of electrical equipment, wondering why the rainwater was coming back in from the stormdrains, and trying to dam it, and then mop it up as quick as I could before it reached any equipment.

I only found out about the tornado when I came upstairs for a coffee break.

I always miss the fun.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 6:34, 1 reply)
Saturday 18 January 2003
a bloody hot day, around 40C by 10am and a howling westerly wind. Some smoke in the air but nothing particularly alarming. Being a Saturday, I took refuge in the lounge room with the TV on the Australian Open Tennis - one of the Williams sisters was playing. I filled the evaporative air conditioner and set it on high. It dropped the temperature by 2 degrees. Some time after 2pm a mate dropped in and we watched the tennis together for half an hour, then he said he had to pick his Mum up from the bus. I saw him to the door.

The sky was orange. He said it has not been that way when he had arrived. Just then the sirens started. I went down to Hindmarsh Drive and looked west. Black smoke was rising - it was houses and shops burning. Fire engines and ambulances were racing west. Most other traffic was heading east. Helicopters trailing huge buckets of water passed to the north.

Burnt gum leaves and grass began to fall, fortunately none of it was still burning. I grabbed the garden hoses and wet down everything I could, then went next door to do the same for the neighbour who had gone away for the weekend. Their water pressure was pitiful, mine was good.

I got the ladder out to check that there was not too much leaf rubbish in the house gutters. I'd cleared them several weeks before but with three eucalyptus trees in the yard which drop leaves continously it does not take long to build up again. The wind nearly blew me off the ladder as I came over the gutter level. The leaves were not too bad, so I sprayed the roof with water and got down.

The people across the street were packing their car, and I thought of the man on the corner whose car had diplomatic plates and was still there. I knocked on the door and he had no idea of the fire to the west.

Then to the south west I saw Mt. Taylor burning, just 2.5 kilometres away.

So things went on until 4.30pm when the electricity went off. Half an hour later the wind dropped. For five minutes or so it was very still, then it blew steadily from the south east. The temperature dropped 10 degrees in as many minutes and after 20 the sky was clear, not a trace of smoke and it was a cool summer evening.

The toll - four killed, 492 injured, more than 450 houses and business premises destroyed or damaged.

The area burned was virtually identical to that burned in 1939, recorded by H G. Wells who was in Canberra at the time.

These scenes were shot less than 5km to the NW of my house.


(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 5:14, 5 replies)
The world ending horror from near Geneva... Switzerland...
Cast your mind back to the year two thousand and eight. It was a very exiting and fearful time filled with promises of futuristic wonder; e-books, a black guy in charge of America and most of all the invention which would tell us the science behind the fabric of the universe.

I am of course talking about the Large Hadron collider.
It was in all the papers and on the telly of how it could prove the discovery of the mythical "god particle" the "higgs boson".
Speculation was agasp at how it could either revolutionise science or create the most destrutive force in the universe. No not Brian Blessed with a mega phone, a BLACK HOLE.

I was twenty one and my father was busy in the back garden of his house. He was always tinkering with something or another; bikes, homemade ladders/death traps etc etc.
After twenty minutes of banging he called me into the garden with a cry of childish glee.

"You know that black hole that might happen?" He said looking into my eyes with mad intent.
"yeeess" I replied slowley and carefully.
"I've made something to stop us getting sucked into oblivion"

I looked at his grinning face and then to the kitchen window where my mother was washing pots in the sink under it, she just looked at me and shook her head sadly.

"Go on then" I said as he lead me up the garden path before pointing at small patch he had cleared away of weeds and grass.

In that patch ladies and gentlemen was a tent peg hammered into the ground with a piece of nylon string attached.

I was that gobsmacked that i forgot to ask why it took him twenty minutes of banging to make it.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 4:38, Reply)
Well, I guess we all know the significance of that date.
Without going into detail as to how my tube was delayed that morning due to 'electrical issues', how I was lucky enough to get off one stop before my train exploded...
I got to work and of course everybody is told to stay put. At the end of the work day (not that much got done that day, too busy following developments on Sky News and calling home), we're faced with the trek home on foot (no public transport running).
Luckily enough one of the lawyers at the office lived down my way and had driven in to work (in Baker Street - seriously, who drives to work everyday in the middle of London?), and kindly offered to drive me home.
That drive home was the most surreal experience of my life. The streets of London were empty. Might as well have been tumbleweed blowing down the road... it had a very post-apocalyptic feel to it that afternoon, and I expect I'll never see London that empty ever again.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 4:38, 3 replies)
World War Three
Sort of on topic...
As a kid I lived with my Dad who was career military. He was posted to the United States at the time of the first Gulf War starting (1990 I think it was) and as such was working a 24 hour day, coming home only for a quick rest and a change of uniform etc but was always on call.
I remember him being home asleep at one stage, when his phone rang waking him up. I heard a brief exchange and then he was out of bed, into the room where I was looking very ashen faced. I askd him what was wrong and I still remember his exact words, "A thermonuclear device just got detonated over Baghdad. Thats it, World War Three."
I froze.
My heart leaped out of my young chest as I tried to come to terms with what my Father had just told me. Then I may have started crying. He then bursts out laughing, ever the kidder, telling me he was joking and it was the on-duty guys calling to wake him up.
I think I was 9 at the time.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 2:28, 3 replies)
we had an Earthquake last week
in Australia, about 9.30 at night so already total darkness and the toddler asleep in bed. 4.4 magnitude with ourselves just 25km from the epicentre, but it occured 17kms underground so no property damage. Still, I'd never been in one before (unlike my wife) so had no idea what was going on during the first tremor.

It was as if a giant had oh-so-carefully cupped the house in his hands so as not to alert us, then savagely jolted it to one side. We both froze - WTF was that - and it quickly happened again. I popped my head outside to check there wasn't some gigantic juggernaut pissing around our rural backstreet (which now seems rather dumb), the only noise outside was hundreds of gallahs circling and squawking waiting for it all to be over so they can find somewhere to land again for the night.

Back inside the wife reported more minor movement, when WHAM a massive jolt hit again. We quickly got a bag of food and water, a bag of warm clothes (it may be Australia but it still gets down to zero at night), a first aid kit and chucked them in the car. Then waited to see if it got any worse, but nothing more came of it, and the toddler didn't even wake up.

The last earthquake in the area was the late 60's but I'm probably going to keep some sort of Earthquake/Bushfire Kit ready in the car or garage - you don't want to be pissing around grabbing essentials if the house is going to collapse.

The savage jolting wasn't so much the house moving as the Earth moving (obviously), so the house suffered no apparent damage at all - but the sensation was incredible.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 0:52, 6 replies)
In 1984
I was 13.
Threads was on the telly. Never been so disturbed in the whole of my young life. It's on youtube if you ain't seen it.
I think it's even more weird now as it has that public information film feel to it, that makes it even more creepy.

It seems really weird now to explain how fucking petrified I was of getting obliterated by a giant mushroom some day, but it was in the back of my mind as a kid. All of the time.
It was on the news, it was talked about, you couldn't escape from the nuclear threat. My dad was an avid supporter of CND and I joined in, even at 10/11 because fuck that, I wanted all that nuclear stuff to just go away, because I was scared!
I knew about Duck and Cover, not sure where from, and thought about which stairs I could hide under when the bomb finally dropped. Like it would help.

Then When the Wind Blows came out just to cheer us up a bit.

There were articles in newspaper supplements with people showing off their expensive underground bunkers in their back gardens, and I remember being so jealous of the rows and rows of tinned goods, all ready to save them from the instant hit, but wondering what the fuck would they come out to when they finally plucked up the courage to open the hatch.

Strangely of my favourite places to visit is Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker. Now a tourist attraction in Cheshire. Go if you get the chance. It's a bit shit, but I have the best snow globe EVER from the gift shop.
Except that's not snow. It's nuclear fallout!
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 0:40, 15 replies)
A few years ago I suffered some horrific injuries as a result of a fishing accident.
A fishing hook got caught in my mouth and ripped it to bits. Fortunately, thanks to a revolutionary new surgery technique, the doctors were able to perform a transplant using a domesticated species of South American camelid resembling a small llama in appearance.

I've got alpaca lips, now.

whaddya mean, "fuck off?"
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 0:05, 6 replies)
South Goa. Several years ago.
Staggering home drunk in a blackout I walked into probably a water buffalo. It was proper dark: can't see my feet dark.

so I pretty much bounced off him and fell off the side of the road into a sludgy field.
Staggered back up to the apartment stinking and was laughed at by my flatmate who'd done the same thing 10 minutes ago.

We both got in the shower together and got 'washed' by a couple of scandi birds.

Some of the above is true.
(, Fri 15 Jun 2012, 0:03, 3 replies)
When everyone was shitting it about the nuclear power plant in Fukushima
People in China started panic buying salt, since if you can saturate your body with normal iodine, then your body can't absorb any radioactive iodine. It might work, or you'll far more likely have a heart attack from eating too much salt. (Some even started panic buying soy sauce, as it's so salty). Here they are:

Bloody idiots.
(, Thu 14 Jun 2012, 23:39, 3 replies)
Third world war.
Late October 2008 I woke to what I thought were sounds of all hell breaking loose on a thermonuclear scale. The frequency and intensity of what transpired to be fireworks was enough to frighten me from my bed and investigate.

I have never been so pleased to find that Take That had added dates to their UK tour and not greeted by reports of the end of the world as I feared.

Yes, my response to fast approaching Apocalypse was to check News 24.

Fuck knows what I'd do in a Zombie attack, I guess it depends what's on LivingTV at the time.
(, Thu 14 Jun 2012, 23:22, Reply)
Yup, pretty good I'd say.
Petrol in the bike, petrol in the car, petrol in the genny, diesel in the van, petrol in the stove, heating oil in the, uh, heating tank.

Plenty food in the cupboards - not much tinned stuff but loads of things like flour, pasta and crucially stuff to add to bland starchy food to make it taste nice. I'm not sure how I'd bake bread without electricity since my cooker is electric, probably build a brick oven out of paving slabs and concrete blocks.

Got plenty tools but mostly I need a saw, a drill and an axe.

Got an HF transceiver for long-distance communications, and UHF and VHF stuff for short-range (including satellite, which isn't really short-range at all).

Got plenty cover to the rear of the house (the zombies will shred themselves on the hawthorn bushes) and a good open aspect to the front so I'll see them coming a mile off. Well, maybe half a mile given the curvature of the hill, but still plenty.

Sorted. Bring on the zombies.
(, Thu 14 Jun 2012, 22:56, 5 replies)

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