The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Column: Time to start preparing for an inevitable zombie invasion

I spent spring break in the exotic locale of Lemont, Ill., home to the state’s largest cookie jar collection, a haunted softball field and the Lemont High School Injun. I wish we were playing two truths and a lie right now, but all of those things are true. I don’t even know which one is the most ridiculous, but I do know that if you thought the “state’s largest cookie jar collection” might be a rollicking good time, you would be wrong. Dead wrong.

Lemont recently decided to tear down our Target, effectively sealing our victory as the World’s Worst Vacation Destination and ruining my life. In the past, if I had, say, three hours to kill, I could go to Target and browse the children’s toy section. Sure, all that security video footage of me brushing the hair of Cabbage Patch dolls isn’t going to win me any political positions, but that’s not the point.

The point is that for the stretches of non-Grinnell time, I could do something other than sit at home and eat clam chowder straight from the can.

With the Target gone, I had to find something else to occupy my time. You’re probably thinking books or movies or running or family interaction, but I laugh at all those suggestions. I had something much more important in mind—preparing for an inevitable invasion of zombies.

Let me preface this by saying that I should never, ever, under any circumstances, be encouraged to think about possible apocalyptic situations. It’s just too easy to use them as a procrastination tool. “Uh, yeah, I could write this paper,” I think at 4 a.m. on Thursday night. “But are zombies going to be affected by reams of paper cuts? Better get to work fashioning a katana out of this Walmart lamp.”

Since I read Max Brooks’ The Zombie Survival Guide a few months ago, I’ve been somewhat concerned about my lack of ability to fight off the living dead—or the living, or small animals, inanimate objects, a crippling sense of directionlessness, or pretty much anything else.

If zombies could be killed by a sense of comedic timing, I might be okay, but as it is, I would be among the first to go.

Over this break, I read a book called World War Z, a scarily detailed “oral history” of a zombie war. The main lesson I learned from the book was that if you want to survive a zombie apocalypse, it’s probably better if you’re not living at 1126 Broad Street. What with our two unguarded entrances, our lack of immediate weaponry and our propensity to drink wine in the afternoon, we don’t stand a chance.

I recently surveyed my room for potential weapons, and the only things I could find were a broken hair dryer, a bag of Bananagrams tiles, and a photograph of me sporting a bowl cut in sixth grade.
At this point, I’m pretty much counting on a lesser-known zombie weakness being a penchant for word games, or a strong sense of pity.

I have a feeling I might be avoiding preparing for graduation by preparing for the end of the world instead. I might run into problems come May 18, but think about it, if the zombies don’t come, I can always scrounge around for a job. Good luck building a makeshift katana on that kind of short notice.

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