Duane spoke while cutting off a piece of a delicious-looking Belgium waffle at the Café 23. “So what if someone can’t get a year’s supply of storage food for some reason. You know, the company’s having problems getting it to them, or someone just doesn’t have enough money right now…Whatever.”
“Adapt,” said Survival Sam munching on a piece of toast. “Pick another strategy. There are always alternatives.”
“Like what?” I asked.
“Operate in stealth mode. Each time you go grocery shopping, pick up at least one or two more cans or boxes than what you have written on your list. That way you’ll gradually build up a pantry of foods you normally like and will eat. Canned goods last quite a while. It may not be years and years like freeze dried or dehydrated food, but it sure beats being without.”
“Yeah,” said Duane. “I can see that. Besides, if you buy something now and the price goes up later, you’ve done well economically. And you’re not buying enough each time you go shopping for anyone to accuse you of hoarding.”
“Canned vegetables are kind of mushy,” I said. “And things like biscuit mix might attract bugs.”
“You’ll eat anything if conditions warrant,” Sam said. “Another suggestion would be to buy things like bags of beans and rice. They’ll keep, and you’re certainly not going to starve with them on hand. Have some canned vegetables with your cooked beans and rice for a little variety.”
“Listen to us,” Duane said. “Talking like some ladies’ hen party about groceries.”
“No harm in that,” Sam said. “If we’re to provide for our families, especially in these times, we’d better be concerned and talking about these things. The world’s greatest chefs are men, so it’s not strange for men to delve into matters of shopping and food preparation.”
“Shame on me. I stand corrected.” Duane wiped whipped cream from his mouth and sheepishly took another bite of his waffle.
“Quite all right,” said Sam. “It wouldn’t hurt to lay in a cookbook or two as well as the food for survival. A little inspiration and instruction goes a long way.”
“Have you got one in mind?” I asked.
“Not particularly,” Sam said. “That’s my wife’s department. Although I do seem to remember her talking about a cookbook that’s good for use with canned food and other storage food. Sally was telling me the other day about one called Brilliant Food Tips and Cooking Tricks. To hear her tell it, it’s a big book—something like 604 pages. She was impressed with it. It has everything you could want, including thousands of hints and kitchen shortcuts in addition to some 900 recipes. It has alphabetical listings as well as charts and tables.”
“Now, I call that practical,” Duane said. “Instead of two left feet on the dance floor, I’ve got two left hands in the kitchen, and I’d need something like that if things were left up to me. How can I get one of those for Diane?”
“I’ll write a blog post about it,” I said. “Click on the book’s title. That will take you directly to a page where you can order it”
“Cool. Sam, I like your idea about being adaptable,” Duane said.
“It’s not a matter of liking the idea,” Sam said. “It’s necessary for survival. It’s as necessary as meals themselves.” He patted his stomach. “Over the years, I’ve become rather attached to food for sustenance.”