So lately I’ve been doing some thinking, about, of course, the eventual zombie uprising. But rather than think about another fantasy-fueled story of survival and evading the undead, my mind led me down a different path…
My own writing, stories from many of my fellow authors, and I guess most-all of us zombie fanatics tend to think about the zombie apocalypse. More specifically we get excited about how the outbreak happens, the type of zombie we are dealing with (fast/slow), and of course, how we are going to survive- our safe havens, weapons/supplies, life on the road- whatever the scenario we love playing it out in our minds.
But as I opened with, I’ve been doing some thinking about this default, mass-conceptualized paradigm, and after some thought I wanted to propose something else; a “what if” of sorts. So here it goes…
What if you were bit? Despite all your survival efforts, despite hours, days, weeks, months or years of staying infection-free only to face the heart-stopping moment of contracting the dreaded Z-virus, BAM! You get bit. When then?
The way I see it, we have a few options:
- End it right then and there with whatever weapon or by whatever means.
- Fight on and see if fate will lead you to a cure
- Welcome life as one of the undead (Jordan’s Brains style, see below)
- Embrace the impending end and live it up for as long as you have
Admittedly I have not read all the zombie stories out there, so someone might have already touched on this. My friend J. Cornell Michel penned the story “Jordan’s Brains“- a brilliant laugh out loud thrill ride from the perspective of someone who has aspirations of embracing life as a zombie. For the mentally (un)stable Jordan life was simplified. There was only ever one way and that was forward.
But with respect to Michel, what if we took a more serious approach to this bitter end? What if life is exactly as it is now, exactly as you are living, when the Z-apocalypse goes down and you get bit? For the ease of thought (and hopefully some responses on here), I’ll lay out some basic guidelines:
- This can take place any time. During the pandemonium of Day1 of the outbreak to years later in a post-apocalyptic world. But not any time in history, meaning you aren’t in Ancient Egypt building pyramids when it goes down.
- You can be a solo survivor or part of a group.
- You can be anywhere in the world.
- The restrictions: the z-virus has been known to take up to 5 days to fully take over. You are you (meaning, if you aren’t trained on sailing, you can’t magically “have the knowledge/ability” and hop on a sailboat and cruise to Tahiti)
There it is.
Since I know someone has to go first, here’s my scenario.
Off the bat, I’m gonna fight this infection. As one of my friends would say, I can be stubborn, especially about shit-luck like this. So I’m gonna choose to ride-out this infection and see if I can beat it or find a cure on my quest. Now, that doesn’t mean I’m all business. Oh no. Me, I find myself back in southern California. I’m gonna battle the F out of some zombies, most likely blunt-object-wielding style to vent out the frustration of the potential death sentence that is a fresh bite on my arm. I would like to pause for a couple hours and embrace my Zombieland-driven fantasy and hit up Six-Flags, Knotts, or Universal Studios and ride some roller coasters. Hell, I’ll probable engage in a little looting/splurging at my favorite stores. But when the countdown really starts to hit me- let’s call it day 2- I’m gonna commandeer a single engine prop plane (yes I can fly), plot a course for the various CDC stations around the US and see if there have been any cures. During this time I’m going to eat, drink, and be as F-ing merry as I can be in this pleasure-fueled thrill ride as my time winds down.
Quick side-bar, to tackle the other points, I couldn’t just end it there- too much fight in me. I also couldn’t wait for the change and continue on as a zomb- that would suck. Lastly, I couldn’t just say F-it and party hard. Potentially dying at any time could put friends/family in harm’s way. Plus it’s a bit too much of a selfish, woe is me approach- again, for me. Others might feel different and want to go down in a sea of bliss. To each their own.
Back to my situation, what happens if there isn’t a last second, heart-warming finale and I find myself cold-sweating from the impending infection, minutes away from an undead, flesh-rotting end? I couldn’t ever bite a bullet, so I think I would ask whatever companion is with me to join me as I stare out at the ocean or out at some snow-capped mountains. And nearing the end-end, I would ask them to put me down easy.
So there it is. A new thought on Z-day and what I’d do.
Any questions, comments, concerns, criticisms, I’d love to hear it. Also, feel free to share your thoughts on what you would do if you were bit…
Keep it Z-real,