Think Again

Good Gear, Bad Gear, Wanted Gear

Think Again

Postby Pilgrim52 » 04 Jan 2015 15:35

Things aren't always the way they appear, and those who see beyond first appearances have a BIG advantage over those who think only in narrow and restricted ways. Recently, I was at the home of a new convert to prepping and mentioned that New Years is a good time to inspect one's supplies for old expiration dates, bulging cans, etc. One thing led to another and soon we were looking through his supplies. He had two of the old wood and canvas army cots which I congratulated him on having instead of the newer nylon and aluminum cots. He looked at me like I was nuts. The only reason he had them was because they were $15.00 each and the newer, "Better" ones :roll: made of aluminum/nylon were $45.00. After smiling as politely as I could, I told him of a similar incident that happened many years ago. I was in college working out my six year military obligation in a reserve infantry unit and at summer camp I was delayed in getting to the field gear issue point. I needed a cot and the supply clerk said I was lucky, he still had a couple of aluminum cots. I told him I didn't want it, I wanted one of the wood cots. He gave me the same "Are you nuts?" look. When I asked him why would I want a metal cot I gave him the same "Are YOU Nuts?" look right back. He thought I was just stupid and laughed. When I claimed a spot in the NCO GP Medium tent I got some sympathetic comments. "Aw, man, they ran out of the aluminum cots? Tough luck, buddy." I was laughed at again when I told them no, I had to insist on getting a wood cot. Even though they knew I had been on active duty for three years in field units, they still assumed they knew better than I did. Not one of them asked why I turned down a piece of gear they just blindly assumed was better than the old model.
A couple of days later, quite a few of my tentmates began complaining that ticks and ants had crawled up into their sleeping bags. I asked them if they'd like to know how to prevent that. Of course, they all wanted to know. In front of them, I flipped my cot upside down and squirted a bottle of issue insect repellent on all six wooden legs which was immediately absorbed. Imagine if you will, the shocked response when I said "You could do the same thing if only you had been as stupid as I was and got a wood cot instead of those really cool aluminum cots that look really neat!"

I waited a couple of days more to be sure they got the point before I showed them how to cut the bottom out of six soda cans, slip one each under the aluminum cot legs and pour a tablespoon of motor oil into them to keep out climbing bugs, just in case they were forced to take another of those "Really Neat Cool Looking Aluminum Cots!" :P
I don't watch survival "reality" TV to be educated. I watch it to be entertained. There's a BIG difference.
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