Thinking About Zombies

So, lately I’ve been thinking about zombies. No, not the political meat puppet types in congress but rather the walking-undead-face-eating type. I’m a big fan of the AMC series “The Walking Dead“. It’s evolved to the point that it’s now less about zombies and more about human survival and group dynamics. Seriously – will Rick really be able to forgive his wife? Is the baby really his? Will there be a showdown between Rick and Shane? Riveting stuff.

Which leads me to another show – Doomsday Preppers by the National Geographic channel. Truly awful TV. Unwatchable. Nat Geo needs to exit the reality show genre and go back to lions eating zebras. Finding a few serious nut jobs who are convinced the world is ending and rating their survival preparations is dumb. In the last episode they featured a guy who’s convinced the magnetic poles will flip and cause world-wide chaos and continents to move. I’m not a scientist, but I’ll hazard a guess that we’ll have adequate time to prepare for the North and South American continent breaking free and slamming into Africa.

If there’s going to be an apocalypse to prepare for, zombies are just as good a reason as any other. Pandemic, world economic collapse, the big earthquake, Yellowstone super volcano, Al Franken running for president, nuclear armageddon, they all share a few common preparedness steps you should be making:

Food and Water

Roughly speaking, your local grocery store is only stocked for three days to a week. Looking at what happens to store supplies every time there’s a hurricane warning in the gulf… it’s not hard to imagine that when something really bad happens you’ll be out of luck if your preparedness plan relies on running to Safeway for a few things. You need a one month supply for your family. Period. Don’t forget your pets! It’s not as much storage as you’d think. Remember we’re talking about sustenance, not gourmet meal preparation.

Word goes out that the local water supply is contaminated. Whatcha gonna do? One gallon, per person, per day. It may be weeks before a reliable source of fresh water is available. Remember the mob scenes during Katrina and attempts to provide water to people stuck on the overpasses? That was only a few days. Figure out where/how you’ll supply your family with water and do it now. No, you can’t substitute 100% with Red Bull’s.

Protection

During extreme events (tornado, small earthquakes, etc…) we often see the best of humanity. Communities and neighborhoods pulling together for the common good. I’d like to think the best of people, but history shows that’s not always the case. Eventually when people get hungry, thirsty, or desperate enough they are going to come take your shit and they will do it by force. Accept it and be prepared to defend yourself and your family. Up to you how you choose to do it, but realize that a stern talking to won’t stop someone who doesn’t share your morals and wants your stuff. In my opinion there’s not many problems that double ought buckshot won’t solve. You’re welcome to use eco-friendly pepper spray if you’d like – let me know how that works out for you.

Everything Else

What else would you want/need if you had to hunker down at the ‘ole homestead for a month waiting for the government to figure out what to do? Toilet paper? Medications? Do you have a way to boil water if the power is out? No electricity = no ATM’s. Do you have enough cash in the house? Can you take care of medical issues like cuts, fevers, a sprained ankle? Something worse? What if a family member fell and broke an arm? How about light at night? Heat if you live in a cold weather area could be an issue. Scotch. And red wine. May as well enjoy your time waiting for FEMA to spring into action.

Beyond a month? Hmmm… things have gone terribly wrong. I’m afraid that in the “civilized” world we’d be in trouble. I can deal with a few weeks without American Idol, but beyond that we’re stretching the limits of human endurance. Read “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy and decide if survival is worth it (spoiler: be prepared to be depressed for a week).

Have I taken any of these survival preparation steps? Of course not! My plan is to loot the nearest Starbucks and drink as many peppermint white hot chocolates with whole milk and whipped cream, at 750 calories per, as I can force down. Then I’ll come knock on your door and beg for food. And to use the restroom.

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