Monday, March 12, 2012

Survival Lesson from Watership Down

"All the world will be your enemy, Prince With A Thousand Enemies, and when they catch you, they will kill you. But first, they must catch you; digger, listener, runner, Prince with the swift warning. Be cunning and full of tricks, and your people will never be destroyed."
Digger. Deep warrens, deep bunkers, buried caches, hidden tunnels. A survivalist with some property can become about half mole pretty quickly.

Listener. Talk radio, news blogs, backyard telegraph, shortwave receivers. A survivalist always has his ear to the wind for the warning that could save his life.

Runner. BOV's, BOL's, maps, contingency routes, fuel cans, route marches. A survivalist is always prepared to travel long distances at a moment's notice. If you've read Watership Down, remember that about half of that book is a desperate bugout across hostile territory. (The rest is covert warfare with combined arms against a tyrannical dictator, FYI.)

Swift Warning. Phone trees, ham radios, field telephones, code phrases, signal flares. A survivalist has multiple redundant levels of communication to spread actionable intelligence throughout the tribe.

Working on Codex Kalachnikova, America's Number One pulp novel about Conan with an AK, has refined this concept in my head, to the point where these phrases are actually religious commandments. The more I read Watership Down, the more I'm convinced that it contains lessons that we are no longer heeding. But I like to apply them to my own life, as well as my attempts at fiction, so what exactly does that make me? A bona fide subversive? Some degenerate pagan furry? Or the most pitifully brilliant genius of our flaccid, spoon fed generation?

I think I'm gonna go with the latter. I never did get the fur thing.

No comments:

Post a Comment