Inverse Daily

Doomsday preppers make their choice

Plus: The science of grip strength.

Ruins of a city. Apocalyptic landscape.3d illustration concept

For a few weeks this summer, in this daily dispatch, I asked readers to choose from a series of questions in a survey that was based on this doomsday scenario:

What's in your apocalypse bag? You know, the backpack you carry when the world ends. These are your essentials for the post-apocalyptic world that you can fit in a standard backpack. The setting for our poll is a partially looted big box store outside New Haven, Connecticut.

Precisely 3,292 people completed our survey. Thanks to everyone who played along.

Today, I’m happy to share the results of that survey. Keep scrolling to read more about what those readers, our very own doomsday preppers, chose to stuff into their apocalypse bags.

I’m Nick Lucchesi, and this is Inverse Daily. Please share this newsletter with a friend by sending them this link.

This is an adapted version of the Inverse Daily newsletter for Tuesday, September 14, 2021. Subscribe for free and earn rewards for reading every day in your inbox. ✉️


Hey, preppy It’s easier than ever to prep. You don’t need a membership to a warehouse store to buy a pallet’s worth of canned beans:

The apocalypse is fashion-forward. If you find yourself in a big box store during the early hours at the end of the world, you might reach for zip-off cargo pants and Crocs — if you’re an Inverse reader.

This summer, Inverse surveyed readers about what they’d shove into a backpack if they were caught unprepared for the collapse of society. Interest in prepping spiked in the Northeastern United States in March 2020, and while it’s cooled off from those panicked levels, the concept is now fully out of the bunker. Prepping has gone mainstream for those of us who do not have a house in New Zealand.

Read the full story.

Go deeper:


The science of grip strength Sam Reiss writes how to improve one of the most important elements of weight lifting and signifiers of good health: the grip.

Grip is a strength function in the hand, which is made up of muscles, tendons, and finger pulleys. When we tighten and flex our hands, we exercise our grip.

Grip strength is critical inside and outside the gym. A study covering geriatric women showed a positive relationship between grip strength and pulmonary functioning — how well the lungs work — as did a study that focused on adults living in the United Kingdom. Another which focused on adolescents revealed grip strength as a positive marker of future health. Inversely, a weak grip is associated with developing carpal tunnel.

Read the full story.

Go deeper:


A psychological concept that shapes your worldview Sarah Sloat writes that mental life includes thoughts, feelings, and intentions we attribute to others, animals, and objects. It can be used to understand social and moral obligations, according to the results of a new study:

Kara Weisman is part of a research team that asked people questions like Do ghosts get hungry? Are robots deserving of moral treatment?

When these answers are pooled, Weisman looks for patterns that inform similarities and differences in our mental lives. A mental life consists of the thoughts, feelings, and intentions we attribute to others, animals, and inanimate objects. It’s a concept we employ to sort social and moral obligations.

In a study released in August in the journal Nature, Weisman and colleagues interviewed adults and children living across the United States, Ghana, Thailand, China, and Vanuatu's South Pacific island country. The interview subjects overwhelmingly conceptualize a mind-body distinction within the framework of mental life. This is sometimes called “mind-body dualism,” referring to thinking of cognitive abilities as different from bodily sensations.

Read the full story.

Go deeper:


The Cadillac XT5 is holding its own The luxury crossover market is stuffed with competition, but the Cadillac XT5 is a fair choice for anyone. Jordan Golson, though, how does it stack up against the Lexus RX, Acura MDX, Audi Q5, and more?

I really like Cadillac. I like the heritage, I like the design, and I like where they're going with electric cars like the Lyriq.

I even like the XT5, the most popular Cadillac on the market. It's a compact crossover SUV that competes in perhaps the fiercest segment in the auto industry.

Sometimes I think there are too many cars to choose from. There are some two dozen options for a crossover SUV like the XT5, and none of them are explicitly bad. And that doesn't even include all the electric options that you could reasonably cross-shop the XT5 against.

Read the full story.

More recent auto headlines:

Voyager 2's post-encounter view of Neptune's south pole as the spacecraft sped away on a southward trajectory.

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