The TIP ETF dropped >10% in October/November 2008.
What might work for you is I Bonds. You do have to hold them a year before you can sell (so you have to keep other emergency funds available until a year has passed), but I Bonds do give you absolute preservation of principle as well as inflation protection and some income (assuming we don't have significant deflation - in which case you will still have a positive real return).
The best deal for rates I have found are the Rewards Checking accounts offered by local banks. Some pay up to 3.5%. The catch is you have to jump through hoops to get this rate. The biggest hurdle is that 10-12 debit card purchases are required each month.
that is not an answer that is an observation. That happened as inflation was FALLING therefore, tips at that time were not the place to be. Will Fed raise rates? Is inflation going to rise (and yes, if they do raise). When you see rates falling/inflation falling that is when you get out.