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The urban prepper: What’s that you say?

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Every profession or association in the world uses acronyms as a part of the language they speak with colleagues every day. They use these acronyms as a way of making their every day communication easier and quicker to convey their thoughts or actions.

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Military personnel, for example, will throw out acronyms such as AO (area of operations), DD-214 (Department of Defense discharge record form), MLO (Military Liaison Officer), MOS (military occupational status), SCAR (Special Operations Forces Combat Assault Rifle), and PT (physical training).

Even civilians in their everyday life use acronyms such as TBD (to be determined), IMHO (in my humble opinion), ASAP (as soon as possible), ATM (automated teller machine), IRS (Internal Revenue Service), SSA (Social Security Administration), and ICU (Intensive Care Unit).

If you spend a lot of time on the internet you’ll find that there are a lot of acronyms that you need to know such as LOL (laugh out loud), POS (parent over my shoulder), F2F (face to face), SMH (shaking my head), BTW (by the way), FWIW (for what it’s worth), and JIC (just in case).

There are some acronyms that mean different things to different groups such as AP (Associated Press, assistant principal or armor piercing ammunition), AI (artificial intelligence, artificial insemination, or assistant instructor), ATM (automatic teller machine, asynchronous transfer mode, or at the moment), EIB (Expert Infantryman Badge or European Investment Bank), and PC (politically correct, personal computer or private citizen).

It’s only fair to assume that preppers would also have a bunch of acronyms because, after all, why should they be any different than anyone else?

The problem is how will you know what they’re talking about regardless whether you are watching a YouTube video or meeting with a group of them?

Have no fear! Here are some of the commonly used acronyms by preppers, but also understand if you’re dealing with a survivalist they’re more likely to use a lot of military acronyms. Which may be a good thing because then you’ll be able to figure out rather quickly if you’re dealing with a survivalist or a prepper.

  • BTE (Beat the end). This is what preppers prepare for; to beat the end of the world by prepping.
  • BBB/3B (Beans, Bullets and Band-Aids). This phrase indicates the necessities of preppers. Beans are food, water and shelter, bullets are freedom, protection and weapons, and Band-Aids are health and medical supplies.
  • EDC (Every Day Carry). These are items that preppers feel you should have with you at all times such as a survival kit, a Swiss Army Knife, flashlight, etc.
  • MRE (Meals Ready to Eat). These are meals that are sold prepackaged at most Army/Navy stores or camping stores. This is also a military term that’s used by both preppers as well as survivalists.
  • TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It). This means that the changes in the world that will take place if there was a major disaster; that this disaster will lead to a totally different lifestyle.
  • TSHTF/SHTF (The S**t hits the fan” or “S**t hits the fan). This refers to what will happen once an emergency hits or TEOTWAWKI. Pretty much every YouTube video that’s about prepping will use this acronym more so than TEOTWAWKI. Probably because this acronym sounds cooler.
  • FAK (First Aid Kit). That’s self-explanatory.
  • BOB( Bug Out Bag). This is a bag of supplies that is used when you have to travel to a safer location. For more information about bug out bags please read the urban prepper’s article at: http://www.examiner.com/article/the-urban-prepper-bug-or-bug-out-that-s-...
  • GHB (Get Home Bag). This is the bag that preppers carry or think people should carry if they want to get from one destination to home. For more information on these bags please read the urban prepper’s article at: http://www.examiner.com/article/the-urban-prepper-beware-of-the-snake-oi...
  • AGL (Above Ground Level): This acronym is usually associated with those preppers who live in the wilderness and have a house as well as an underground bunker. For instance if someone calls and asks them where they’re at and the response is AGL it’s safe to assume that they’re not in the bunker.
  • ABAO (all bets are off). This is usually used in connection to TEOTWAWKI and/or TSHF or SHTF.
  • BLUFOR (blue –friendly- forces). This is a military term that is used by a lot of preppers to signify other preppers.
  • BOL (Bug out location). This is the acronym to let family know where you’re at without actually giving your location.
  • BOV (bug out vehicle). Some preppers have a special vehicle that’s equipped with any necessary supplies already in them and it’s used only for bugging out.
  • CINOs: Christian in name only.
  • FUBAR (fouled up beyond all recognition). When something (person, place or situation) really is as bad as it appears.
  • FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt). Experienced preppers or survivalists will say this about anyone who doesn’t know as much as them which is everyone.
  • GOOD (get out of dodge) Leaving an area in a hurry.
  • INCH (I'm never coming home kit) It’s when you can’t or won’t be returning and it’s a special kit you take with you.
  • KISS (keep it simple, stupid). Don’t over think or over plan anything.
  • OG (off grid): Usually for a home that isn’t connected to any power source, but could also be a person who chooses to keep their whereabouts unknown.
  • POW (personally owned weapon). This is a firearm that you legally bought and paid for; that you have a license to have it.
  • PPPPPPP/P7 (poor prior planning produces pitifully poor performance). Another acronym that’s self-explanatory.
  • WTTF (want to trade for). You may see this in ads for preppers either in print or online.

How many acronyms you want to learn and memorize probably will depend on how much you’re going to be socializing with other preppers. These acronyms aren’t really necessary if you’re reading a prepper book or looking at a prepper website because the author or website administrator will most likely explain things in a way that everyone understands.

Even if you don’t intend on using any of these acronyms and they really don’t have any value if you’re going to just prep for yourself there’s no harm in remembering a couple of them. Still it’s good information to have just in case and who knows if you’ll need it.

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