8 Tips For Surviving A Zombie Apocalypse
Here at What Culture we consider ourselves to be experts in many different things. Sure we have massive brains filled with the latest gaming news, movie tidbits and comic book geekery but did you know that we’re also the leading experts on surviving a zombie apocalypse? Darn tooting we are! In fact, if the Government called upon us to protect you lovely people from having your brains eaten by your dead grandma we’d know exactly what to do. So it seems only fair that we share this information with you – our dear readers – just in case we’re a bit busy helping the Governments of the world sort out their living dead problems.
So let’s begin with the basics.
1. How Likely is A Zombie Outbreak
According to the BBC, researchers in Canada concluded that unless a Zombie outbreak was dealt with quickly and aggressively it would in fact lead to the downfall of civilisation. You see, people have actually been funded to look into this kind of ‘eventuallity’ under the pretence that the idea of an outbreak of Zombieism works in much the same way as any other alien infection and thus the research can help prepare for such a real life scenario. Personally we think this is all part of the Government’s attempts to keep Joe Public in the dark. Research is being undertaken to prepare for Zombies, like it or not.
If you’re still unsure about the reality of Zombies then just take a look at nature and you’ll see that such infections already exist within the animal world. Take Toxoplasmosa Gondii for example. It lives inside the body of the common Rat, but the only place it can bread is inside the intestines of a Cat so it takes over the brain of Mr Rat and makes him get himself eaten. The parasite actually programmes the Rat, much like a similar parasite could programme the human brain. In fact over half the world’s population is infected by this little bugger already. What if it were to evolve? Scary thought, hu?
Need more examples? How about Haiti, home of the term Zombie. People there were infected with an acute neurotoxin that actually wiped the memories of the victims, left them in a barely conscious state and caused them to shuffle around performing basic daily tasks such as eating. There are books and documentaries on this – and we don’t mean ones called Zombie Flesheaters. And if you’re STILL not convinced then have a look at the symptoms of Mad Cow’s Disease – muscle spasms, dementia, rage, changes in gait – it’s all there in black and white for the sceptics out there. All that’s keeping us safe at the moment is the fact that none of the aforementioned causes have taken hold … yet.
2. Know Your Zombies
Like with most things there are different types of Zombie. As we haven’t been face to face with any as of yet it’s safe to assume that any of the weird shit you’ve seen on TV or in a video game could actually be true. However, tradition dictates a certain type of Zombie – at least in the first instance. Who knows if they can evolve or adapt over time?
Here’s what we do know:
1. Zombies can be both the reanimated corpses of the already dead OR any living thing that has been bitten and thus transformed.
2. Zombies are slow. Any notion that they may be able to run should be disregarded. Sure, if you’ve just been turned then you may have use of your full leg muscles a while but rigor mortis reaches maximum stiffness after 12 hours, so beyond that we should assume the creature cannot run.
3. The brain of a Zombie is not entirely dead. It continues to operate at 0.5%. No Zombie will ever win a pub quiz then – but they are brighter than most of the people who go on Jeremy Kyle’s TV show.
4. The primary weapons of a Zombie are it’s hands/claws and it’s teeth. You’re not likely to change sides if you get scratched but a bite will damn sure bring about a sudden case of death. Well, more like a slow agonising case actually.
5. The original cause of a Zombie plague grossly affects how us humans can be turned. For example, if the cause is airborne then you might become a Zombie just by breathing. Likewise the original Zombies may just be reanimated corpses and you could be turned by a bite – the transference of saliva which carries a parasite etc. Or in some cases you may already be carrying whatever it is that turns you (like in The Walking Dead) and when you die you will become a member of the undead without ever coming into contact with one. Let’s just hope that if/when Zombies walk the Earth the only way for you to be turned is by a bite. At least that gives you more of a fighting chance at survival.
3. How Do You Kill A Zombie?
Killing a member of the walking dead is easier than you think. Sure they may already be dead but they can die a second time, and if you do it correctly they will actually stay dead.
The official line (because there IS an official line) is to remove the head or destroy the brain. You can do this by any means you so chose but the best way would be to shoot the creature in it’s low functioning brain. Easy enough to do if you’re a dab hand with a firearm but what if you’re not? You’d have to get pretty close to Mr Undead Stinky Pants to prevent wasting ammunition and being up close to a Zombie is not somewhere you want to find yourself.
Should you find you’re stuck in a situation where you don’t have access to a gun (that’s most of non criminal Britain) then you really need to learn how to improvise and quickly. Look for something heavy you can bludgeon a head with. How about sports equipment? Do you own a baseball bat or cricket bat, a la Shaun of the Dead? Are you in your car? Run the bastard over. If you’re not sure it’s dead then reverse and do it again. And again. If you’re not a resourceful person and often struggle to improvise with even the most menial every day task then it’s safe to say you’re not going to survive for very long.
Another way you could survive is by waiting the plague out. With so many people inevitably being turned and Zombies distaste for their own kind’s flesh they will eventually run out of food. Couple this with the fact that they never stop decomposing even though they’re ‘alive’ again means you could realistically survive without having to kill any. What Culture does not recommend this tactic however as it is long and boring.
Remember, Zombies are a bit stupid. They can be easily confused or distracted when they’re in shuffle mode. The same cannot be said if they’re eating you. They have one track minds for stuff like that.
4. Location, Location, Location
OK, so you’ve learned the basic essentials. Next you need to think long and hard about where you’re going to set up your base camp. By ensuring you set yourself up somewhere nice and safe you’re already half way to surviving. Now, if you’re thinking to yourself “I’ll just find a nice cosy house to hide in” then you’re an idiot. What if somebody is already inside and they don’t intend on having any housemates? You could find yourself staring down the barrel of a gun quicker than you can say “Boomstick”! And what if the people inside have already been infected? Do you fancy becoming their latest snack? Basically what we’re saying is pick your pad carefully. If you’re own home is safe enough then we’d advise sticking it out there. Remember though, you may find other survivors trying to gain entry to your fortress so be prepared to protect that which is yours against the living as much as the dead.
5. Ensure That Which Is Outside Stays Outside
Once you’ve decided on your base of operations you’ll need to ensure that all windows and doors are up to standard. Zombies are hardly the strongest buggers on their own but en masse they can do some serious damage. Single glazing wont be much help, nor will it keep your gas bill down in the winter. You need strong windows (or reinforced ones) and ideally UPVC doors with barrel locks. No Zombie will be able to bash it’s ay through one of those – unless it’s Nemesis from Resident Evil. If you have curtains or blinds keep them closed. You can keep yourself safe by not drawing attention to yourself. You could also board windows and doors up for extra protection but remember you also may have to get out in a hurry so don’t build your own tomb.
Upstairs windows aren’t such a big deal. Zombies have not yet learned to fly so they won’t be coming in through bedroom windows just yet. We would suggest keeping a large stock of heavy items (rocks, ornaments etc) upstairs so that you can drop them onto the head of any passing ‘Walkers’. Then, when the coast is clear you can retrieve the item for reuse. This is another great way to minimise close contact.
6. I’m Hungry. Should I Eat A Zombie?
One should never eat a Zombie. It’s a good way to get infected. It’s probably a good idea to avoid fresh meat as a whole. You can never be too sure. Personally this writer would just raid his parents pantry as it has enough food in there to last several lifetimes after his parents stocked up for the Y2K crisis that never happened. It’s a safe assumption that they’ve probably prepared for a nuclear war, Zombie apocalypse and the second coming of Jesus too. You get the idea, right? Lots of food is a good thing. The last thing you want to do is find yourself having to go out and about to find something to stop the rumble in your tumble.
Think to yourself: Where is my nearest Co-Op, Spa or Tesco? How safe is it? Is it likely to have been raided yet? Are my neighbours smart enough to have not been eaten yet? If you don’t have access to a car then you better prey food is nearby. How about stealing a shopping trolley and turning it into a battering ram? You could do your weekly shop and smash any brain eaters out of the way before they get their cold, dead hands on any of the bargains. Don’t forget you may also be shot by other living folk while you’re out so be prepared for absolutely anything as soon as you step out of your front door – or back door if you’re one of those annoying people that never unlock the front door and insist on all mail and visitors to come round the back.
Another idea would be to grow your own vegetables. It’s a great skill to learn and Zombies make awesome fertilizer.
7. What Should I Do If I Get Bit?
Pray? Chop off the infected limb? Do a double somersault into a backflip? Any of these are as good as the other because if you’ve allowed a Zombie into your home or have been foolishly tricked into letting one bite you then you’re going to die. And let’s face it, you probably deserve to be turned into a smelly rotting corpse too. The only thing left to do is offer yourself up to another survivor as target practice.
8. What Do I Do When The Apocalypse Has Ended?
Well, the obvious thing to do once the threat has been removed or minimised is to begin the repopulation of the Earth. This is no easy task – are you up to it? We don’t need to instruct you on how this process works but if you’re really that dumb then just remember the talk you had with your parents back in the day – “When a man and a woman love each other very much they give each other a special cuddle …”
Understandably this part is more enjoyable for the male survivors. Women, you’ll have to pop out a few dozen kids each minimum. You can handle that right?
I think we’ve covered the basics. Just remember safety first. Don’t make any stupid decisions and keep sudden movements to a minimum. Oh, and one last thing. WhatCulture! HQ is off limits in the event of a Zombie apocalypse. If you so much as look at our hideout we’ll catch you in a net and use you as bait while a few of us make a run for the nearest GT News for supplies.
That’s right. We’re survival experts but we’re the kind that have gone a bit crazy and you just can’t figure out if we can be trusted.
When there’s no more room in Hell stay the Hell out of our way!