Shit, I really should have thought of this sooner.
For now, please refer to the Glossary of Terms on the excellent Survivalblog.com – written by the also excellent James Wesley Rawles. I will add my own entries and insights to this page as the blog grows legs. That way I’m not copying anyone else’s hard work and can properly understand every entry. I will also alphabetise as I go on, then arrange it into several archived pages later on.
Coronal Mass Ejection (CME): A CME is the result of massive scale magnetic distortions on the surface of the Sun, causing enormous expulsions of solar wind and magnetic field into Space, far beyond the normal range of the Sun’s activity. This can distort the magnetic and electromagnetic fields of other planets that get in the way of the explosion. One hitting the Earth could quite literally wipe out the power grids of entire countries.
CPR: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. The act of manually pumping the heart of someone who’s heart has stopped to function independently. Usually combined with ‘rescue breaths’ forced into the victims lungs to attempt to oxygenate the blood.
Credit Crunch: An economic condition where companies find investment capital hard to attain. Lenders during a recession are concerned with high numbers of defaults and closures, so raise the price of their lending. This stops companies growing and increases the debts these companies owe.
Dehydration: There are several medical definitions of dehydration, but essentially it is a severe lack of necessary fluids in a given organism. The fluids, for instance water, in an organism, for instance you, are the conductors for essential minerals and electrical impulses to travel around the body. Without enough fluids, the body begins to shut down as it fails to replenish its reserves of water and minerals.
Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP): Electromagnetism is all around us. It is emitted by our phones, televisions and even the computer you are reading this on. It is essentially the ‘aura’ of electricity. An EMP is created when an atom is split and a nuclear bomb explodes and is a sudden surge of electromagnetism that can cripple surrounding electromagnetic fields. Because of this, it has been hypothesised that a High-altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (called a HEMP) could cripple an enemy much more effectively in the short term than an actual nuclear explosion. EMPs can also affect the Earth as part of a Coronal Mass Ejection.
High altitude Electromagnetic Pulse (HEMP): see EMP
Hyperthermia: The opposite of Hypothermia, this is when the body fails to thermo-regulate properly (or cannot keep up with temperature rises) and becomes too hot to function correctly. Natural body temperature lies at 37°C / 98.6°F but when it rises above 37.5°C / 100°F the body begins to shut down as the brain begins to overheat and fail.
Hypothermia: The natural human’s (as opposed to the unnatural human’s) body temperature remains constant at 37°C / 98.6°F. This is stabilised by thermo-regulation. When the core temperature drops below the safe levels to the 35°C / 95°F area, the body begins to shut down its organ and brain functions. These symptoms are collectively called hypothermia.
Pandemic: From a portmanteau of Greek words meaning ‘all the people’, a pandemic is a super charged version of an epidemic. Where an epidemic affects a group of people, like a bunch of kids from the same school catching Flu, a pandemic would be all the kids in Europe catching the Flu. Pandemics are often only hypothesised. Remember Swine Flu? Bird Flu?
Potable: Potable is a term given to water that is safe to drink. Of course, it could just be called ‘drinking water’ but the term also subconsciously informs us that the water is safe to store.
SAR: acronym. Search and Rescue. Although in major disaster situations special teams are dispatched to perform search and rescue operations, in both the US and the UK these responsibilities often fall to the Fire Service.
SHTF: acronym. Shit Hits The Fan. Speaks for itself really.
TEOTWAWKI: acronym. The End Of The World As We Know It. This concept is widely understood in the Prepping community to be the real deal, when everything about life as we understand it grinds to a halt. No food in the markets, no more money, no rule of law and order. Nothing that resembles our lives now. This could be brought about by widespread natural disasters, global economic collapse or a new World War.