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Friday, December 20, 2013

What Would You Need?

Watching "The Hunger Games" and "Catching Fire" made me think about what items I would consider essential to survival.  Katniss makes do with a bow and arrow, tablets to purify water, something to wrap herself in for sleeping, and a rope to tie herself to the tree.   Cool video below on how Jennifer trained to climb trees for the movie.

When I go tent camping I take very little compared to my neighbors at the campground.  A small cooler (sometimes), my tent, an inflatable mattress, a flashlight, a sleeping bag, my Kindle, and a small shower kit. Occasionally I'll bring a chair to sit in but I usually just read in my tent.  I don't use the fire ring. Besides a change of clothes and my camera gear that's it.  I get some odd looks.  It takes me five minutes to set up, even in the dark or the rain.  I've watched people take an hour or more to break camp on Sunday when it's time to leave.  In the shot below the people who wanted the site when I was considering whether or not it was time to leave showed up and I said, hey guys, give me a few minutes and it's yours.

Haven't seen "The Hunger Games"?  It's probably better than you think.  It's not just about surviving the "games" but about surviving all kinds of things: love, loss, even your own society and government. People get a little hung up on the children killing each other issue, but that's only a small part of the larger story.  The problem is the government that put them there; they do what they need to do to survive for themselves and their families, and in the long run the series is about how much will you sacrifice of yourself to fight injustice.  If you watch the clip below be aware it gets a little disturbing but I've seen way worse in other movies.

Katrina and I watched "Catching Fire" at the theatre when she was home for Thanksgiving and it met my expectations.  I give it two enthusiastic thumbs up!  Jennifer Lawrence is an incredibly talented actress.

What could be wrong with a movie that has a strong female hero?  Not to mention those hilarious performances by Stanley Tucci as Caesar.  Loved him in "America's Sweethearts", too.  Getting to watch Lenny Kravitz act is just a bonus.

But I digress.  Let's say you were stranded on a desert island.  Yeah, that old scenario.  And you had your basic "survival" gear.  You could get clean drinking water, you had shelter and a way to get food, and tools to make a fire.  What would you need emotionally to survive?  Say you were allowed five things, actual things, not people.  What would they be?  Of course this theme was tackled in "Castaway".  What do you need to keep your wits about you when you're lacking human companionship for a long period of time? What do we really intriguing thought at this time of year when people are spending money on tons of "things".
Here's my list.

1. Camera (battery and SD card included, I'll cheat a little)
2. Solar camera battery charger
3. Since I couldn't have my blog I guess I'd have to include a journal and pen
4. Smartwool socks
5. neti pot

Didn't expect the neti pot, did you?  If I couldn't have my allergy pharmacy on hand I'd have to at least have the neti pot! I know no one would see my photos, but that's okay, I mostly take them for my own pleasure anyway.  Sharing them is just the icing on the cake.  Normally chocolate would make the list, but not very practical for the long term and I don't think I'd crack under the pressure of a life without chocolate if it were necessary.

Well, not a very exciting list, but maybe some of you will have some more creative ideas.  May the odds be ever in your favor!


  1. Several years ago Bill bicycled from San Diego, CA to Cabo San Lucas... the southern tip of the Baja. About 1,000 miles...He took a tent but said he never used it. Everything he had was stashed in his paniers.... but he did stop at tiendas along the way for food and replenish his water. Guess I'm glad he did this before I met him ;-) I've read the Hunger Games books.... are the movies true to the books?

  2. I've stayed away from the movie for the very reason you said, but if the children killing is a very small part of it then may be I'll see it for I do like a good apocalyptic tale. As for five things I'd need? First and foremost a journal and writing tools to record the experience. Next would be a stack of books. Hope that counts as just one, if not and I can only have one book I'd pick the Bible. Haven't read it yet and that'll keep me occupied for a long time. An unending supply of tea. Don't know about the other two.

  3. That Jennifer is quite a climber! I read the Hunger Games and was very disturbed. So much so that I have the other two on my Kindle and can't bring myself to read them. It was not only the killing that bothered me, but the fact that it was a spectator sport. I won't watch or read any apocalyptic stories either. I've always had ostrich tendencies.

    P.S. I would need a bathroom.

  4. One thing I'd need was Knife like my swiss one. Not seen any of those films yet but I will

  5. I agree with the comment above. I read the first book, and didn't like it at all. The entire premise about kids killing other kids and it being a spectator sport was very disturbing to me. And yes, I also have the other two books in the series, but can't bring myself to read them.

    What would I want/need to survive? A unlimited supply of microbrews and kettle chips! And my ipod. And, of course, my camera. :)

  6. I'm a tree climber from way back - that's always been one of my favorite things to do.

    You certainly are a minimalist camper. I'd use the fire ring tho. I like a fire at night and some s'mores.

    Ok, I'd definitely need a photo of my husband and kids, my camera, my I pad loaded with books and music and my swiss army knife. Oh, and my favorite pillow. :-)

  7. I need my chapstick! Pen and Paper, Camera (in case I'm rescued), my blanky