There is one shameful secret that you must know about me before we begin, I am terrified of zombies... It's true... Yet, with all my claim to nerdiness they are not a subject matter I can easily ignore. Let's face it, zombies are so "in" right now that even the CDC is taking notice of them, but they scare me. So, I have only ever been a reluctant undead-enthusiast. I watch movies like Dawn of the Dead, shows like Walking Dead, and play games like Resident Evil only half-heartedly. Even movies like Shaun of the Dead or Zombieland still strike a quivering nerve that I don't quite want to face, (in the manliest way possible, of course.)
This makes little sense, because I am not terrified of vampires or werewolves. Logically, in a one to one battle I would probably get devoured by a werewolf or sparkled to death by a vampire, but I could reasonably defeat a single member of the shambling undead. So what is it about the undead? It's the mindlessness. There is something about a mindless, unceasing mass of opponent that just freaks me out. I have very similar feels about Reavers, (though I would make the argument they are not completely mindless, because they are shown to be able to pilot starships and launch coordinated attacks.) At least against a vampire I can reason with him, maybe even anticipate his strategy and out-think him, but not with a zombie. There is no reasoning with a zombie.
Maybe it has something to do with my own intelligence. I value my ability to think, reason, strategize, and even talk my way out of any situation I might find myself in, (though admittedly my Charisma score is only like an 11.) Going up against an opponent that not only resists my attempts at reasoning and rational thought, but threatens to take away my most valued asset is simply too much for me. Still, I am slowly trying to desensitize myself to this fear, because not only is the zombie apocalypse coming, but I think it may already be here... I mean look at Congress.
If you want to talk about mindless, shambling, undead bags of flesh you need look no further than the government of the United States. (Whoa, this post is a political rant? That was a weird turnaround...) In their most recent move, Congress, in all its infant wisdom, has decided to postpone the critical discussion necessary to fixing the debt crisis in America until March, because (I guess) the problem you can't fix today, might as well be the problem you can't fix tomorrow, either. How is it that the most August body in the nation can't even sit down, like rational human beings, to solve a financial problem that is so critical to the continued success of the existence of the United States, (and if you are wondering why I capitalized "august," it is because come March, I am sure the only decision Congress will reach will be to postpone the decision till the last month of the summer.) I am really trying to not be political, but there comes a point where you just get fed up and all you want to do is rant to the six people who actually read your blog.
The 112th Congress, (the congress that just ended its session January 2, 2013,) only passed 219 pieces of legislation
, and most that was to name public buildings. This may seem like a lot, but this is the lowest in American history.... Seriously, the next lowest year was during the Truman years and there they still managed to pass over 300 pieces of legislation
. Heck even the Congress of the 1940's managed to pass on average 600 pieces of legislation a year, (and we were in a freaking WORLD WAR!) Our most current Congress, (which changed very little after the last election cycle) couldn't even pass a bill to approve aid to victims who lost their homes in Hurricane Sandy... You got to be kidding me? What excuse does this Congress have? NONE. They are polarized, indecisive, and more inept than a coked-up Archie trying to choose between Betty and Veronica, (and I am so irrationally mad that I just made an Archie's Comics reference... This what they are doing to me!!)
Perhaps for solace, I am rereading World War Z
, by Max Brooks, also in anticipation for the coming movie, (because nothing screams Zombie Apocalypse like Brad Pitt, these days.) In it, Brooks gives an oral history of the Zombie War that nearly destroys humanity, and though I am not a zombie enthusiast I do enjoy this book for its presentation and writing style. However, this is also more than just a horror novel. The most ingenious part of the book is that Brooks uses the Zombie War to expose serious flaws in our global and national systems that would show how the zombie threat (or really an similar threat, such as a pandemic,) would easily infiltrate the cracks in our stagnant, politically polarized, and over-confident way of life. It has sharp criticism for America and our need for our bureaucratic moronicness, our politicians that are too busy bowing down to lunatic public opinion,, our comercialism, and our self-satisfying isolationism. (I don't mean isolationism like how we were before World War II, but the kind of isolationism you get from putting yourself on a pedestal above the rest of the world.) There are many themes which are incredibly and culturally relevant to America and the rest of world today. I highly recommend it.
I can only hope 2013 will be a better year for Congress and for America, though I doubt it. Both political parties have become too radical in their beliefs and entrenched in their ways, thus forcing me to retreat into a fantasy about the thing that scares me the most. So really... maybe I lied in my first paragraph, because in order to get away from the trouble of this wolrd I am escaping inot a world ravaged by the undead. Maybe there are things out there that terrify me more than zombies. You see, much Like Orson Welles used his broadcast of War of the Worlds
to expose the inherent problems of America in the 1930's, Brooks does a very convincing job to show us a reflection of America that is completely ill-prepared to face and adapt to many of the emerging problems of the near future, and just maybe, that image we see staring back is the scariest thing of all.
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