(Oringinally written Saturday, February 04, 2006)
It’s nowhere near Halloween, but I just thought I’d tell you about how much I hate zombies. I hate ‘em!
The undead are a big problem for us all. Imagine yourself sitting at home, enjoying a lovely cup of Earl Grey, when you feel something cold alight on your shoulder. You turn to see if you accidentally left a window open when you notice a disgusting odor has permeated the room. Upon your shoulder you observe what could only be the remnants of a hand after months or untold years of rot. You attempt let your eyes travel up the decomposed arm, to see where it leads. But before you can make out anything more than a jumbled mass of flesh, bone, stringy hair and dark, fragrant soil, all sitting atop a neck; a mouth full of jagged, yellowed teeth fills your vision, and the last thing you remember is the sound of your scalp being peeled away from your skull for easier access to the sweetbreads inside.
You, my friend, have just had your brain eaten by a zombie. Not a pleasant experience. Not at all.
To me, out of all the monsters out there in the world, zombies are the worse, (well, maybe Bill O’Reily, but the only thing I’m worried about him doing is calling me in the middle of the night for phone sex.)
I think my fear comes from a vivid childhood memory. Not of being attacked by zombies, but of my father. I remember walking into a room once where he was watching a movie, I was very young, (only physically, mentally I think I’ve stayed about the same.) I was curious to see what he was watching, until I saw a bunch of zombies feasting on some dude’s body parts. It freaked me the hell out and I wanted to leave, but I couldn’t. My dad held me down and made me watch every excruciating minute of Day of the Dead. I’ll never be the same.
The scary thing about zombies is that not only will the kill you, but they’ll turn you into one of them. It’s a horrible game of tag, or red rover. Once you become “it”, your job is to make as many other people “it” as possible. Death is not an option.
I even have a book, an encyclopedia I believe, of parapsychology, which has an actual recipe for creating your own Cajun-style voodoo zombie. But I didn’t bring that book to Iraq, and I don’t trust the internet enough to check there, or else I’d have my own army of undead slaves!
After many years, and dozens of zombie movies, I think I have figured out all the tricks to staying alive next time radiation, solar flares, unruly science or aliens are unleashed upon our graveyards, creating flocks of living dead.
- Zombies are notoriously slow walkers. They’re dead so they don’t need to be in a rush to get anywhere. This means that all you have to do is maintain a brisk walk, or light jog to stay ahead of them. Bicycles are also an option. Recent movies, (i.e. 28 Days Later, the Dawn of the Dead remake) have introduced much faster zombies. The trick with these zombies is to use their short attention spans against them. They might chase you for a while, but as soon as they see something shiny on the ground they’ll lose interest in you. I suggest always carrying some tin foil in your pocket for just such an occasion.
- Zombies are dumb. They don’t know how to open doors, climb ladders, or do anything that requires thought. All they can do is shuffle along and occasionally say “Brains,” if their vocal chords haven’t rotted away. This means that roofs and penthouses are great places to hide until the military arrives. Ground floor malls with glass doors and walls are a no-go.
- Always remember to lock your door! Heavily wood doors are good, metal doors are better. Try not to be somewhere where zombies can come through windows. You can board them up as much as you want, but they’ll still find a way through. If you’re in the higher levels of a building you can keep windows and patio doors open. This will allow the air to circulate.
- Keep an adequate supply of food. Naturally, canned food is best because is can last for a long time. Otherwise you’ll be forced to raise your own livestock or grow a garden, both of which aren’t great options when you’re stuck in an apartment or cabin.
- Don’t hang out with idiots. If people want to venture outside in order to save somebody or because they think they can make it, let them. You don’t need dumbasses like that around. Another option is to outright kill them; you could live off a human body for a while if you have refrigeration.
- Have a generator, or some source of power. Living in the dark sucks.
- Don’t go anywhere if you can help it. Zombies are great fans of the outdoors and consequently spend a lot of time there. The key is to always be where the zombies aren’t.
- Don’t waste time shooting the freaks, burn them. At the very least, set up an elaborate series of booby traps designed to decapitate or otherwise slice up zombies. A headless zombie can still come at you, but without a mouth, it can’t do much biting or chewing.
- People often ask me “Josh, I’ve seen zombie movies where people hide in malls, pubs, cabins, houses, apartments and farms, just to name a few. Yet in every movie the zombies get in anyway. Where would you suggest for a hiding place?”
The Artic. You never see any Eskimo zombies do you? Failing that, a boat.
If you keep all of these in mind, you should be able to survive the next zombie holocaust, while only killing a few of your loved ones to survive. Because the zombies are out there man, and they’re biding their time until they decide to come for our nice, juicy brains.