I’m been giving a lot of thought to zombies lately.* I am not alone in this; apparently there is a zombie walk on campus on October 27th and presumably all of you are already ripping up your shirts and distilling fake blood in your dorm kitchens. Certainly, I’m looking forward to the opportunity to stagger around campus with an ax through my skull (like I’ve never done that before). But the truth is zombies have been on my mind ever since I was in Seattle last year visiting my cousin Kirsten and her guy, Kenny. Kenny, Kirsten told me, would be the God-King post-Zombie apocalypse.
I have no doubt this is true. Kenny can do, as far as I can tell, anything. Build a car out of a tin can, a tooth pick, and three grey stones; rig up an irrigation system using nothing but rain water, an old hat, and some stalks of wheat; repair anything man-made; possibly build a particle accelerator. Not being one to miss an opportunity, I decided to try and get in good with the God King before the zombie apocalypse, what to make sure I’d be invited into the survivors cave later.
Um… I said, trying frantically to think of some useful skill I could use to negotiate my acceptance into the community, do you think you’ll need a jester? A poet?
Kenny was quiet. What need would there be for a poet in the survival cave, when the concerns were less high-culture and more immediate-survival?
I can kind of play guitar, as long as someone else tunes it for me first, I offered hopefully.
The God King stayed strangely silent.
Oh, come on, Kenny. Can’t I be of any use ?
Finally, Kenny nodded. Sure, he said. We’ll keep you around for food.
I decided to clarify. To, um, cook the food?
The God King shook his head.
Oh. I sat with that for a moment, and then perked up, delighted. You know, I said brightly, if y’all just take a limb at a time, that could extend my life for like, I dunno, three weeks or sumthin.
Well, that’s great, I said. I was a little worried that seeing as how I had no skills and all, I might not actually be useful. But it turns out I don’t need skills! This is super!
I came home from Seattle satisfied that if I managed to survive the zombies (and I will, using my super stealth) I would be welcomed (ever so briefly) by the God King and his band of survivors. Now I’ve been putting my mind to defense of my house. Roll down metal shades? Check. Spikey three-dimensional metal spikes surrounding house, on roof, and in basement? Check. Any number of zombie-killing-plants from Plants vs Zombies? Check.
I think we need to turn the same kind of attention to detail to fortifying VIU. Frankly, it’s probably too ambitious to try to defend the whole thing, but I’m thinking we need to keep the men and women in trades safe so they can build tanks, rig up generators, and weld spiky three-d fences. In my view, it’s not looking too good for those of us up the hill; try as I might, I just can’t see how my awareness of Clifford Sifton is going to be useful at all during the zombie wars. As has already been arranged, I will be fine (four weeks, tops), but all of you in Sociology, Astronomy, or Liberal Studies should be getting very nervous.**
*By a lot I mean more than I usually do.
**I have an in with The God King. Come talk to me.