COLUMN: No reality in these bogus programs

Due to Christmas deadlines this column was written last Thursday ...

Due to Christmas deadlines this column was written last Thursday, which means that if you are reading it now the Mayans didn’t quite get it right about the world ending on December 21.

Of course, if that did occur …

In any case, looking on the bright side, the History Channel’s extensive coverage last week of all sorts of doomsday scenarios were helpful insights into both our past and, the Mayans aside, our potential future.

I don’t buy into the “Doomsday Preppers’ ” philosophy that is a major program topic on the channel. In the event you don’t watch this program, it details the preparations individuals and families are making to protect themselves against the chaos of an apocalypse.

There are interesting differences between Canadians who are preparing and those in the U.S. A guy in Canada has buried 42 school buses and has offered an open invitation to anyone to “come on down” when disaster strikes.

Americans on the other hand, clad in camo gear, of course, appear more concerned with having enough ammunition to fend off the remaining population. One guy has even gone so far as to invent a shovel that is also capable of slicing a pig carcass in half, useful apparently in the event he runs out of bullets.

I really don’t have a problem with people preparing to deal with disaster. In fact it makes sense, since there is the possibility of volcanic eruptions, earthquakes or the North Koreans zipping off a nuclear-tipped rocket aimed at points to the south of us.

Most of the apocalyptic events, save the bomb, are survivable if you take reasonable care in laying aside a supply of food and water, and knowing how to hunt and fish, etc. I will admit, however, that in some instances one would only be delaying the inevitable, though the will and desire to survive are impulses difficult to subdue.

Unfortunately, in showcasing many of the efforts of “preppers,” the producers of the show tend to reduce the examples of how people “prepare” down to the lowest common denominator – in other words, for complete dummies. Either that, or the preppers portrayed in the show are themselves stupid. For example, recently three members of a family are “camped” in their underground shelter – inexplicably mom was left upstairs with a gun to deal with interlopers – and prepared dinner by heating a single can of food on a little gas stove. No pots? Then, they handed the can around (not hot?), each eating with one of those handy-dandy Boy Scout contraptions that contains knife, fork, spoon, cork screw and a veritable cornucopia of semi-useful tools.

We must assume the show’s producer felt that things simple like ordinary spoons and plates didn’t capture the ‘edginess’ of the simulated situation.

Regrettably, Doomsday Preppers isn’t the only staged program on the somewhat misnamed History channel.

Mountain Men, which at the outset appeared to have a certain outdoorsy appeal, quickly degenerated into a program that I now only occasionally watch to seek out the ridiculous anomalies … like the guy who has someone else sight in a rifle, which was entirely different from the one he used, then complains it misfired, which it didn’t. He just missed what he was shooting at.

Another “star” on this completely contrived program who lives in the Montana wilderness discovers in mid-winter he’s almost out of firewood (maybe he should watch Doomsday Preppers in his spare time) and then heads into the bush, only to return with enough wood to fill a wheelbarrow, all the while bogusly obsessing about wolves and grizzly bears.

Simply awful stuff masqueraded as “reality” that detracts entirely from the value of other worthwhile programs on the channel.

markrushton@abbynews.com

Just Posted

Harrison Hot Springs country singer Todd Richard poses for a photo with Mission firefighters. (Photo/Sarah Plawutski)
VIDEO: Harrison country artist Todd Richard plans for a busy, rockin’ summer

Richard and his band look to live shows as restrictions start to lift

The theme for this year’s Fraser Valley Regional Library Summer Reading Club is “Crack the Case” and Katie Burns, community librarian at the Chilliwack Library, is encouraging people of all ages to sign up. She is seen here at the Chilliwack Library on Friday, June 18, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Crack the case, read, win prizes with FVRL Summer Reading Club

‘Immerse yourself in other worlds and have a bit of fun while you do it,’ says Chilliwack librarian

A police pursuit involving Abbotsford Police ended in Langley Saturday night, June 20. (Black Press Media file)
Abbotsford Police pursuit ends in Langley with guns drawn

One person arrested, witnesses say an officer may have been hurt in collision with suspect vehicle

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

Kalyn Head, seen here on June 4, 2021, will be running 100 kilometres for her “birthday marathon” fundraiser on July 23. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Woman’s 100-km birthday marathon from Chilliwack to Abbotsford will benefit Special Olympics B.C.

Kalyn Head hopes run raises awareness, advocates for inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

FILE – Most lanes remain closed at the Peace Arch border crossing into the U.S. from Canada, where the shared border has been closed for nonessential travel in an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Blaine, Wash. The restrictions at the border took effect March 21, while allowing trade and other travel deemed essential to continue. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Feds to issue update on border measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, permanent residents

Border with U.S. to remain closed to most until at least July 21

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

(Black Press Media files)
Burnaby RCMP look for witnesses in hit-and-run that left motorcyclist dead

Investigators believe that the suspect vehicle rear-ended the motorcycle before fleeing the scene

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

(file)
Pedestrian hit by police vehicle in Langley

Injuries described as serious, requiring surgery

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read