Monday, June 13, 2011

CDC Misses The Mark On Zombie Preparedness

If brain-eating zombies attack the headquarters of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention they'd better bring a sack lunch with them.  That's the lesson I took away from reading a recent article on CDC's blog titled Social Media: Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse by Ali S. Khan.

For preparing for a zombie apocalypse Khan recommends that people stock an "emergency kit" with silly things like water, food, medicine, tools & supplies, sanitation & hygiene items, clothing & bedding items, important documents, and first aid supplies.  He then recommends that you come up with an "emergency plan."

Most modern Americans already subscribe to the delightfully simple 3-step emergency plan that consists of: Step One) Get to the roof.  Step Two) Wave at news choppers for help.  Step Three) Die in heaps. 

Khan, however, recommends the needlessly complex plan of:
  1. "Identify the types of emergencies that are possible in your area.  Besides a zombie apocalypse, this may include floods, tornadoes, or earthquakes."
  2. "Pick a meeting place for your family to regroup in case zombies invade your home…or your town evacuates because of a hurricane."
  3. "Identify your emergency contacts. Make a list of local contacts like the police, fire department, and your local zombie response team."
  4. "Plan your evacuation route. When zombies are hungry they won’t stop until they get food (i.e., brains), which means you need to get out of town fast! Plan where you would go and multiple routes you would take ahead of time[.]"
As a highly-skilled blogger myself I was quickly able to see through Khan's clever ruse.  Using a literary device known as "bullshitting," Khan was attempting to use a subject that Americans care deeply about (zombies) to get them to learn about something that they don't care at all about (being able to survive longer than 14 seconds in an actual emergency).  However, I have a couple problems with Khan's conclusions.

First, he forgot to mention getting a gun and stockpiling buttloads of ammo.  In every zombie movie I've seen (except for a couple of pussy Brit films) zombie survivors immediately grab guns and start blasting zombies.  It's usually a "target rich" environment, so again, stock up now and carry lots of ammo during a zombie apocalypse.  As the LA. riots, Hurricane Katrina, and other examples show, having a good "looter-shooter" at your disposal ain't a bad idea in non-zombie disasters either.

Second, Khan suggests faith and reliance on the federal government during a zombie apocalypse.  Says Khan: "Not only would [gov't] scientists be working to identify the cause and cure of the zombie outbreak, but CDC and other federal agencies would send medical teams and first responders to help those in affected areas[.]"  Puh-lease!  Something tells me that wouldn't go quite like planned.

Our fucked up federal government would first have to try to borrow money from the zombies in order to fund the zombie apocalypse response.  When Uncle Sam goes before them with his hat in hand he would merely be exposing his delectable brain to the ravenous creatures.

When it comes to advice on surviving a zombie-induced doomsday forget the CDC and go with the real experts.  Here's a list of rules for surviving the zombie apocalypse as compiled by neurotic zombie survivor "Columbus" in the great movie Zombieland.  (Since I didn't write all these down when I watched the movie, I give a hat tip to the nerds who did and posted them at Wikipedia.  An additional tip of my hat to whoever invented the copy and paste functions on my computer.)  The list is incomplete because not all the rules come up in the course of the movie.

Who you gonna believe?
Drowsy CDC bureaucrats or
zombie slayers "Tallahassee" (left)
and "Columbus" (center left)?

2."Double tap"

3."Beware of bathrooms"

4."Wear seatbelts"

6."Cast iron skillet"

7."Travel light"

8."Get a kickass partner"

12."Bounty paper towels"

15."Bowling Ball"

17."Don't be a hero" (Columbus drops the word "don't" in the movie's climactic scene)

18."Limber up"

21."Avoid strip clubs"

22."When in doubt, know your way out"

29."The buddy system"

31."Check the back seat"

32."Enjoy the little things"

33."Swiss army knife"

34."Clean socks"


So if you heed the advice of the real experts (Columbus and Tallahassee) you might be able to not just survive a zombie apocalypse but you may even be able to win the coveted "Zombie Kill of the Week."


Anonymous said...

Damn, I've been doing it all wrong. Guess I can sell off all of the prep stuff and buy a new wide screen so I can keep up with my mind control lessons. Just think of it! History Channel, CNN, Dancing with the Stars, CSI, House, NASCAR, NCAA, MTV all on the wide screen! Good bye brain cells. You were burdensome anyways. I'll just sit tight until something bad happens. Then when it does, I'll race to WalMart to buy beer and Pop Tarts. Once secure in my Fortress of Lady Ga-Ga Happiness, I'll wait for FEMA to come rescue me. I'll be so grateful to get on that train and git on my way to that camp with the lovely concertina wire (used obviously to keep the jealous people out). There's a sign at the entrance, “Arbeit Macht Frei”. I wonder what that means. The guberment will take gud care of me. 'Bama is my hero.

P.S. About the beer and Pop Tarts – yes people actually do this, in droves. It's a perfectly naturally response and shows good prioritization.

Bawb said...

Oh I say, good show Ben old bean. I never did understand the brilliant government advice of just getting some plastic sheeting and a gallon of bleach for emergencies. Maybe it makes your corpse much easier to handle and dispose of after the fact when and FEMA bungles the job, as usual.

Out here in the West I must also add to the clarion call for more and bigger guns due to the very real threat of underground Graboids.

The government wont let me have a Solothurn 20-mm anti-tank rifle but are they gonna be there to handle the situation when the Graboids show up? I think not.

Anonymous said...

Graboids out west. Lion, and tigers, and bears! Oh my!

Here in the agri-fuel state (of confusion)of Iowa, Inc (a wholy owned subsidiary of Monsanto), we have the Wall People. Two dimensional beings just waiting' just to horrible to say, even for the internet. The only way to be safe is to remain outdoors, as far away from of all buildings as possible. Not even a pole barn is safe. You have been warned. The only thing worse would be zombie Graboids and zombie Wall People.