As our local news stations so diligently got the public riled up over yet another possible snow storm, my thoughts turned to the lines of people mobbing the grocery stores to "stock up" on ridiculous amounts of meat, eggs, milk, toilet paper, chips, beer and soda. All of the bare necessities. It's a mob scene. People in the Northeastern parts of the USA laugh at us here in Virginia because of this, and because they start closing schools when snow comes within 50 miles or is in the forecast. Snowplows line the streets and sit for hours under overpasses waiting for a half inch of sleet. Cars are abandoned by the side of the road. True, most people here don't have the faintest idea how to drive in the snow (just get a four wheel drive, and you are invincible, right?), but that is another tale for another day.
Last year, during "Snowmageddon" when we had 3 "blizzards", it was dubbed the "winter of the century". True, it was pretty amazing (upstate NY residents turn your head) to have two feet of snow fall on three separate occasions. We were fortunate to have been "snowed out" on vacation in Florida, but ultimately did return to some six foot snow drifts in our driveway. As I said, impressive. However, with all that, in all three situations, and my very first "Storm Of The Century" in 1995 (four feet of snow in 72 hours), we were able to have dug our way out, and got to the grocery store in 48 hours. Hardly the need to mob the store to prepare as if there had been a nuclear war.
My point is simple: If I, at any point, have less than 72 hours worth of food in my house, I think I probably have much bigger problems to worry about. What is the worst case scenario for being out of milk? I can't make a latte in the morning? I need to eat dry cereal? Running out of beer? Homer Simpson may take issue with this, but I just might survive watching football without it. Toilet paper? Ok, a different crises, but proper planning would prevent this issue.
Let's treat our groceries the way we SHOULD treat our gas tanks: Fill it up when it gets to 1/4, don't wait to run out. As a volunteer Fire/Rescue guy, we top off our tanks when we get below 3/4, just in case. A weekly trip to the store, and knowing what you have and don't have can prevent emergencies. You shouldn't have to ever mob the door. You might find yourself eating dry cereal now and then, or not having jelly for your PB&J, or eating Spaghettios for breakfast.....but you'll be just fine. I promise.