This month I’m participating in The Summer of Zombie Blog Tour (2014). Originally I signed up to help promote my zombie collection (Waste Not), but I very quickly came to enjoy spending time hanging out in virtual space with all the other fantastic people participating. Wonderful dudes (which is a term I used to describe both men and women :-p) who just happen to write about zombies 🙂
One of those people is Kirk Allmond, and I’m super stoked to be hosting his guest post today — The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool!
The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool
By Kirk Allmond
When you visit the thousands of zombie prepper websites out there on the internet, you will find thousands of posts claiming various things are “The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool.” I think they all get it wrong.
When surviving in a post-apocalyptic world, weight is of serious consideration. There is no room in my pack to carry a strawberry slicer. A tool that does one job, a unitasker, has no place in my bug out bag. Everything must be able to serve multiple functions. Therefore, a unitask item like a gun is not The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool. No matter how useful a gun is, there are other things that can do the job of killing the intended target, be it zombie, unfriendly target, or that 8 point buck that will feed you for three days.
The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool must be readily available, preferably something that almost everyone already has. Purpose made items, like that shovel that does 97 other things are cool, but expensive. Not everyone has the resources to have the top-of-the-line multitool, or a crowbar that also cooks bacon. Please note: The Apocalypse is not worth surviving if there is no bacon.
There are two distinct styles of zombie survivor. The “Bug Out” group, who at the first sign of zombies loads up the truck and heads to some remote destination they have pre-prepared, and the “Bunk In” group, who roll down the hurricane shutters and break into the stash of canned bread when they spot the first rotten, festering corpse shambling mindlessly down the street. In order to be considered “The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool,” the item must be useful to both groups.
The lone-wolf bug out guy, for all his brooding, unshaven, my skills against the world attitude, has no use for a generator. The “I have a family to protect and we are defending our home until our dying breath guy,” on the other hand could make great use of a propane powered generator. They are efficient and easy to refuel. A pair of bolt cutters will get you twenty propane tanks from that cage sitting outside every single convenience store, drug store, hardware store, and grocery store in the United States. But, as useful as it would be to the Bunk In, a generator is not The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool.
Both types of survivor will have to have water. After oxygen, it is the most important resource to the survivalist, whether Bug Out, Bunk In, country, city, suburban, desert, tundra, or prarie. Without water, you’re dead in three days, and if you’ve ever gone two days without something to drink, you pretty much feel like death. I can’t imagine what that third day feels like, or what kind of stupid mistakes you might make.
Standing water is home to bazillions of microscopic contaminants, pathogens, and pollutants. Even though I drink from every river and stream I came across, and have never had any issue, I can’t think of much worse than ingesting giardia infested water while on the run from a horde of slobbering brain eaters. “I’d really like to defend myself from those nine zombies surrounding me, but first let me go projectile vomit from both ends for the next ten minutes.”
Water filtration is of crucial importance. But there are thousands of ways to perform this task, and a water filter is a unitasker. It does its job extremely well, and makes life much easier, but it is not “The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool.”
The number one asset Humankind has against the onset of the shambling horde is our speed. They are slow. Inexorable, unstoppable, unwavering, but slow. If the survivor finds themselves face to face with four zombies, she could choose to fight. Sweep the outstretched hands away, follow up with a machete blow to the temple, cleaving the head to expose the rotten gray matter contained within. But no matter how sharp your skills, no matter how practiced you are in combat, you cannot account for all variables.
The smart solution is to run. Gain distance, which buys you time to employ other tools to do the job in a safe manner. Therefore, in my humble opinion, your feet are “The Ultimate Zombie Survival Tool.” They are the ultimate free resource. They can be silent, they can be fast, they can push zombies away, and they have a better reach than your hands. They can carry you safely away from an encounter that was too close for comfort. They take you to the food. They take you to the water.
Consider post-apocalyptic life without your feet. It would be nearly impossible to survive. Take care of your them. Keep a good pair of boots. Keep moleskin. Keep clean socks. Because without your feet you’re in serious trouble.
If you’d like to talk about zombies, prepping, writing or my books “What Zombies Fear” you can find me in all the places.
Kirk is currently promoting his zombie novel, What Zombies Fear 1: A Father’s Quest. I haven’t read this book yet, but I find the title super intriguing (what DO zombies fear?) and I really like the cover. You can check out the first few chapters for free by clicking on the cover image below 🙂
* * * * *
The stench of rotting flesh is in the air! Welcome to the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2014, with 33 of the best zombie authors spreading the disease in the month of June.
Stop by the event page on Facebook so you don’t miss an interview, guest post or teaser… and pick up some great swag as well! Giveaways galore from most of the authors as well as interaction with them! #SummerZombie