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Tuesday, Sep 28, 2021

Max Brooks’ practical guide to zombies

You’re in your dorm room studying on Facebook. Suddenly, you get a text message and e-mail from Mercer Police emergency alert system:
You impulsively get up to look out your window, but the view is mostly the brick of the building opposite yours. You starve for more information. Both Facebook and Twitter explode with speculative updates. You hear powerful knocks at your door—the kind your R.A. uses during tornado warnings.
For whatever reason, you do not check the peephole before opening the door. The door is hardly unlatched before it pushes in with such force that it knocks you back. It isn’t your R.A.; it is a full-fledged, jaw-snapping, gut-wrenching zombie. Evidence of its last meal stains its face and shirt.
The zombie stumbles towards you, moaning. Three more zombies file through your door, attracted by all the noise. You soon succumb dozens of bites, but your death is short-lived. You soon rise to join your zombie brethren in the pursuit of more flesh.
Fortunately, this was a hypothetical scenario. You fell for the illusion of security within your dorm, but human error made you the join the zombie hoard. Taking proper precautions can avert that particular fate if and when the actual zombie apocalypse occurs.
Max Brooks, a concerned citizen, wrote “The Zombie Survival Guide” in 2003 to aid the preparation for zombie encounters. “The Zombie Survival Guide” is an invaluable reference for the living during a zombie outbreak.
The book details basic zombie knowledge and zombie survival skills. These skills range from how to identify zombies and infected individuals to methods of combating zombies, containing outbreaks and finding defensible locations.
Brooks recommends that the reader use traditional survival manuals for primary reference. I recommend that you acquire a copy of “The Zombie Survival Guide” as soon as possible; the information within the book could save your life.
First, Brooks distinguishes the voodoo zombie and movie zombie from those infected with the Solanum virus (the virus responsible for zombie-ism). Voodoo zombies are still alive and have no free will while movie zombies often have superhuman capabilities or the ability to run and climb. Real zombies are truly the walking (mindless) dead, possessing no more capability than the once-living body. That is, they cannot fly, use tools or shoot lasers out of their eyes.
The majority of the book has chapters devoted to finding and securing areas of refuge, selecting weapons, choosing transportation and staying sane in a world of the undead.
The end of the book contains a list of fictional zombie outbreaks in the past, going all the way from 3000 B.C. to A.D. 2002. Some of the entries attribute actual historical mysteries, such as the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island, to zombie attacks.
Brooks also published “World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War” in 2006. A film adaptation of “World War Z” was previously scheduled to hit theaters on Dec. 21, 2012, the supposed end of the Mayan Long Count calendar and the beginning of the end of the world, but was pushed back to June 2013.
If the world does end Dec. 21, I hope it is due to the zombie apocalypse. I’ve got a few zombie-incapacitation techniques that I have been itching to try.


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