I looked for photos of anti-zombie helmets to use for this post, but I couldn’t find any. Then I remembered good old Max Brooks and his wisdom – helmets should never be worn in the event of a zombie attack because the safety of one’s skull does not make up for the loss of all that valuable peripheral vision. Remember: a bite to any part of the body makes you into one of the undead.
There’s long been a part of me that wants to live in a home that doubles as a fortress, with katanas mounted on every wall (“Blades don’t need to be reloaded, meatbags,” Max Brooks sings to a tune he must have learned from Mary Poppins), and my own Z-Day bunker filled with the supplies needed for a hunkering-down of indefinite lengths. As it stands, I don’t even have a bag set aside for emergency evacuation in the event of whatever warrants emergency evacuations. Clearly, I’ve barely thought about it; it’s so far beyond my scope that I can’t even imagine a scenario where I’d have to run out of my apartment and leave everything behind, never looking back. I think that whatever it is, it’ll be so big that I’ll see it coming. If that were true, however, there wouldn’t be any point to the ready-bag in the first place.
Even if we do get some warning, we won’t be able to differentiate it from all the general ridiculousness of daily life. Crazy coincidences, illogical weather events, and the lowest acts of human depravity happen every single day in our vast, unpredictable world. For example, a 21-year-old electrical engineering student in Baltimore killed his roommate, then ate the man’s brain and heart. Then there’s the now infamous Miami cannibal who was shot after he refused to stop eating a homeless man’s face. What about the dude in Hackensack New Jersey who stabbed himself, pulled out part of his intestine, and threw that and pieces of his flesh at police? These stories are terrible – unbelievable things you would never expect to see. Yet, there are witnesses. One said of the Miami cannibal that it was the worst thing he has ever seen and it has traumatized him for life. That’s how trauma works – you see something so horrific that you never thought in a million years you’d see it in person, and that messes you up, man!
None of us non-bag-packers think anything bad is going to happen to us. That’s why we have to hope, for our own sake, that if we’re wrong, we’ll at least have a little warning before anything big hits. We have to hope that we’ll recognize the early signs, that we’re smart enough not to be surprised. No one wants to be the one screaming, after it’s already too late: “We should have seen it coming! Why didn’t we see it coming?! WHY!?!”