Apocalypse Now? A Quick, Fun Guide to Preparing for the End of the World

Economic meltdown. North Korean nukes. Swine flu. Signs abound that life as we know it may be coming to an end, and it's time to start preparing for post-apocalyptic scenarios. There's no time to build a panic room or bomb shelter--we'd suggest seducing somebody who already has--but we can point you toward the few local spots where you can find survival gear, menacing weaponry, firearm training and other Armageddon must-haves.

Updated: May 03, 2009

Apocalypse Readiness


Jackson Arms Shooting Range

152 Utah Ave, South San Francisco, CA 94080

We're all anti-gun here, but once the cannibalism starts, you'll want to know how operate a firearm, and this South City firing range can teach you how to take out a potential brain-eater from 50 feet. Both pistols and rifles available seven days a week; Ladies Night on Mondays.


Mission Discount Club

2558 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94110

Since the likelihood of civilization collapsing is only about 50/50 right now, you won't want to spend a whole lot of cash on fancy unexpired canned food. At this massive Mission dollar store, you'll get great values on old tins of garbanzo beans and albacore tuna with dolphin chunks, which you can graciously share with your starving neighbors while keeping all the jars of sun-dried tomatoes and organic blueberry preserves for yourself.


Tad Gear Inc

660 22nd St, San Francisco, CA 94107

Everyone from paramilitary groups to special ops soldiers to that knife-collecting World of Warcraft weirdo in your IT department orders weaponry and gear from SF's combat and survival specialist. Useful post-apocalypse items like body armor, space blankets, water purifiers, weatherproof clothing and big, crazy knives are just some of the things you'll wish you'd bought once Kim Jong-Il levels San Francisco with a nuclear Hail Mary.


Green Apple Books

506 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94118

With Netflix and the Internet both destroyed by pig-faced mutants--and Comcast just as worthless as ever--people will return to books for entertainment, and this three-floor shrine to the printed word is the best bookstore in the city. You'll get great deals on everything from 1000+ page epics to trashy paperback novels and valuable "how-to" tomes. They also buy books, so you can sheepishly return to sell that copy of "How to Cook Rats, Cats, Dogs and Friends" if said end-of-the-world scenario never comes to pass.


California Surplus

1541 Haight St, San Francisco, CA 94117

If you're lucky, you might be able to grab a semi-functional WWII-era gas mask at this Haight St. surplus shop, also a good place to pick up the military fatigues that will become the de rigueur ironic hipster uniform after martial law is established. They also sell hobo-style duffel bags and, weirdly, yoga mats, which will double as day-beds for hardbody yoga teachers forced to turn to street prostitution when people, struggling to keep roofs over their heads, stop paying money to stretch and stand on one foot.