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Cover of "Dellamorte Dellamore (Cemetary ...

Cover via Amazon

It seems lately that the subject of zombies keeps coming up in my life. I’m not a huge zombie fan but I can get into the madness if I allow myself. One particular friend of mine knows a great deal about zombies- in fact I would say he is almost an aficionado. He knows Italian zombie movies, directors, sound tracks- the works. My knowledge is somewhat limited to Dawn Of The Dead, Cemetery Man (brilliant Italian movie with Rupert Everett), and Shaun Of The Dead. Until recently I hadn’t seen 28 Days Later or the sequel, 28 Weeks Later. But now I have and there seems to be a real problem with the genre.

If I have this right, zombies are undead humans who have some wicked virus that makes them act really stupid, turn a grayish blue and want to eat human brains. One bite (even in your arm) from said zombie and you become a zombie too. Generally speaking they are easy to kill and move REALLY SLOWLY.

But when I saw 28 Days Later, I noticed that the zombies in that movie could run and they could run fast. Personally I think not only it isn’t fair but also it just doesn’t make sense. The whole trick to not getting caught by a zombie is that you think they are too slow to catch you -so you become complacent -but there are so many of them that you just can’t stop the madness. I mean if they can run- how are they any different than a normal human being? Okay so the new ones vomit blood into your mouth or something gross like that but seriously if they can run, then they are just regular human beings with the flu, and we have to run from them so we don’t get sick.

Maybe H1N1 was a zombie infection.

Anyway, the discussion was had by some friends and most agreed that zombies shouldn’t run. Then the topic of “what would you do” came up. Where would you go if there was a zombie invasion? Some teenagers I know said they would commandeer a hardware store, make bombs, etc. But one pointed out to the other that it needed to be near some land so that they could grow crops, the other replied that the hardware store needed to be next to a supermarket. My zombie expert friend said he would go to the mall because that’s what they do in every movie. I thought I would go to a mansion in the neighborhood that was on a hilltop and had a full view around the whole property- kind of like a castle with a moat- that idea. My friend promptly called me a dummy and said I would never make it.

Yesterday I was waiting patiently at the car wash for my vehicle to come out when a man sat next to me. I noticed he was reading Gun’s, Germ’s And Steel by Jared Diamond; a book he said (in a nutshell) about survivor of the fittest. We began to chat about what makes certain societies stronger than others, how some develop and flourish while others simply disappear. We got to talking about the Donner Party tragedy and how was it that even though they all suffered the same tortures of famine and cold, certain families survived without eating their cabin mates, while others ate the pet dog, horse and cousin but died anyway, and some ate their family and made it through the whole fiasco. As I stood up to go to my car, the stranger put his book down and said, “It’s like zombie logic; you never know who is going to survive.”

I paused, stunned at his comment and asked him if he thought zombies should be able to run and he immediately said, “No it makes no sense.”