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Hope for the best, plan for the worst

Thursday, April 17, 2008
If there's one thing that Hollywood has taught me, it's that the zombie outbreak is imminent. As exciting as this may seem to some of us, it can only be really fun if you (and your loved ones) remain among the living. This is my attempt to explain to you, the reader, what simple steps you can take to increase your odds of surviving the nights.

I would recommend collecting the following tools and keeping them handy for the zomb-pocalypse:
  1. 36-inch wrecking bar - $11
  2. 26-inch camper's axe - $28
  3. Wind-up flashlight - $25
  4. Handheld CB radio - $33
  5. Solar powered battery charger - $70 (don't forget the batteries, too!)
If you can, get a gun - and plenty of ammunition. Such implements are wasted on the zombies, but might come in handy should some civilization disintegrate and some old lady is fighting you for the last piece of bread. Let me re-emphasize: Don't waste your ammo on anything without a pulse. Ammo is finite. Use an axe; they don't run out of bullets.

This list is not exhaustive, of course. You'll also want to pick up as much fresh water and food ahead of time as possible. Forget about scavenging after the fact; the first 100 days after an outbreak - if not immediately controlled - are going to be chaotic. Having a prepared stash will help you outlast the unprepared, allowing you to compete more effectively for resources after they perish. Just remember to balance preparation with mobility; staying in one place for long periods of time is just an invitation for the zombies to come knocking at your door.

Of course, there are many environmental factors that can contribute to your survival:
  • Consider how long the power will stay on. Here in the Pacific Northwest we might be alright for a while, considering that we use a lot of hydroelectric and nuclear power. However, when the lights go out we'll be more screwed than your average Californian during the winter.

  • Also consider population density. On the West Coast (and indeed, pretty much anywhere that isn't New England) we actually have space between our cities. Once the airlines are grounded (as they inevitably would be), barricading a city would become both possible and effective as a means of keeping the infected out. In large cities with high population density, however, it would become nearly impossible to keep the walking dead away from the living, and your survival chances will drop dramatically.
Armed with all this information ahead of time (knowing is half the battle) will help you survive alone. However, humans are social creatures. I would recommend attempting to hook up with a group of prepared survivors, such as these guys.

One final piece of advice: Find a friend or loved one who's capable of taking care of themselves. When you're out hunting and gathering, you don't want to be blindsided by a herd of the undead - and extra pair of eyes will help that. Be prepared, take a buddy.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

My battle plan.. sorry... action awareness report, consists of a few points.

a) big gun, not so much for the zombies but to ensure entry to...

b) costco, lots of food, no windows and very few entries. The gun is due to the fact that i currently don't have membership but am sure they can be persuaded in my favor at that time :)

8:38 AM, April 23, 2008  

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