For me, the classic example of awareness and anticipation is the interaction between Inspector Clouseau and Cato in the Pink Panther films:
Man: Why don't you get out of those wet clothes? You could catch pneumonia.
Clouseau: Yes, I know that. I will do as soon as I get home, provided that idiot Cato does not attack me first.
Man: Why don't you just tell him not to?
Clouseau: Believe me, it's not that easy. I have given him instructions to attack me wherever and whenever possible, and it has now become a matter of pride with him to try to outsmart me. I guarantee that at this very minute, his fiendish little brain is plotting some new ambush.
Which, of course, he does… http://videosift.com/video/The-Pink-Panther-Strikes-Again-Cato-vs-Clouseau. [Really, it is an 8 minute “educational” video!]
While it is doubtful that any of us need to anticipate a threat of Clouseau’s kind, it is imperative that we begin to develop a type of awareness that could very likely save your life. Look around. What do you see? Besides that closet you swore you’d clean out last year and a few pesky cobwebs, begin to look at your surroundings in a new light:
--Look at your neighborhood, see your neighbors. How are they prepared for emergencies?
--Look at the road you travel every day. Do you know how many overpasses and high voltage wires cross your daily path?
--Look at the class room, the hotel room, the airplane exits. Are you prepared to exit correctly, even if smoke is blocking your sight?
No one wants to live the life of Henny Penny, but it is prudent to anticipate what could happen and plan for it now. Be aware of your surroundings and how they would affect you in a disaster.
So, put down The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo for a few minutes (and I KNOW how hard that is!) and take the time this weekend to think about “What if?...” and plot your own ambush – on disaster.