When Did We Fail Her As Parents? I Blame Television
On a recent road trip family vacation to southern Arizona, my lovely sixteen year old daughter Rachel and I got to talking. As things inevitably do when you are dealing with a sixteen year old on the one hand and a father with the maturity of a twelve year old on the other, the conversation turned to the coming Zombie Apocalypse. She asked me where I would hide, how I would travel, and how I would arm myself when zombies took over the world. I know, I know. Foolish questions. Everybody knows that you need to find a fortified base on high ground, drive an armored car, and have more firepower than Rambo as you make your way around town looking for other survivors (preferably fat, unathletic survivors because we all know that they are the first to fall behind and get eaten while the rest of the survivors make their escape).
My reasoning was so obvious and so air-tight that I thought it needed no explanation and that our conversation would move on to who would win in a fight between a ninja and a robot. I was wrong.
Rachel told me that I was stupid for planning my future this way, and that if I were in a zombie movie, I wouldn't make it to intermission, let alone a sequel. She explained that (as everybody knows, *rolls eyes*) zombies are attracted to noise, and armored vehicles and Rambo-sized weapons make noise, which would just lead to more zombies coming after you rid yourself of the first wave and then just when you think you are free and have run them all over (*stops to catch her breath*) and drive away they follow you to your secret armored lair on the mountain and pound on your door until the door falls down and they would chase you down and you would run but they would corner you and eat you.
Dumbfounded, I asked her what I could do to save myself? What does she have planned to stave off the walking dead? "I," she declared with an air of intelligence and certitude "would travel on foot and only carry a baseball bat. I would walk quietly and bonk the zombies on their heads if I came across any." What if they see you first and hide and wait for you in ambush? "Zombies can't see you if you stand perfectly still, so I would stop moving if I saw one." Aren't you thinking of the T-Rex from Jurassic Park? "No." (*Rolls eyes again*) I would stand perfectly still and wait for them to chase something loud, like your big armored truck."
And where would you live? "Well, since the virus that causes zombies to be zombies...." Wait. It's a virus? "Yes." Are you sure? "Positive. Since the virus that causes zombification can't live in the cold, I would go somewhere cold. Like Alaska."
Reminding her that she complains about having to walk from her bedroom to the bathroom, I inquire how she is planning on getting to Alaska on foot. Carrying only a baseball bat. And with no vehicle to carry food or water. "I can do it. And," she said, batting her eyes and flashing he beaming smile at me "I know my daddy will stay with me and protect me. And when he (being the fat and unathletic one) falls behind and gets eaten, I'll make my escape."