-- NEWSFLASH --
Fun in the sun, or mercy from the jaws of Hell?
A busy day at a local water park was interrupted today by the sudden onslaught of thirty zombies. Luckily, all but the park’s manager managed to escape unharmed.
City management is currently debating a solution to the attack. SWAT units have resisted the prospect of a frontal assault citing the fact that “they’re already dead.” Additionally, a zombie’s traditional enemy, fire, is negated by the water they are playing in, according to one deputy fire marshal’s words, “so luxuriously.” Army chiefs have referred to this as “a brilliant tactical move from the zombie nation.”
Unfortunately, Linda was not the only one that had been turned into a zombie. As I leapt quickly over Tim’s popped head, I noticed that Sally, who occupies the cubicle across from me, was seated next to a zombie who had his arm around her. Her eyes were rolled back in her head and she had probably already passed out from the fear and stench, but he continued to type up love poems on the computer and show them to her with various grunting and moaning noises.
Moving down the row, I realized that the zombies were everywhere. Blood drenched the cubicle walls and disembodied heads and other organs were scattered around everywhere. I foolishly placed my foot too closely to a well portioned appendix, and a zombie leapt out, teeth gnashing. Fortunately my old soccer instincts took hold and I delivered a swift kick to its head, which promptly detached and went flying across the office.
Some of the zombies were doing abnormally normal things, apparently not having realized that they were zombies yet. For example, several were standing around the water cooler moaning at each other, except the one whose leg had rotted off, who more just leaned against the water cooler. I got by them with a cheerful smile and a quick wave. They murmured something in zombie and waved back as I dashed away.
In my manager’s office several more zombies were crowded around his desk. They were waving their arms ferociously, shouting things like “More brains! Bring back Hawaiian Fridays!” As he reached for the phone to call security one of the zombies snatched at him and began swallowing his arm while it was still attached. I made my way to the exit.
As it turned out, even if he had managed to call security it wouldn’t have meant much, as they were all zombies now too. When they saw me they made as if to get at my brains, but I smoothly pulled a pack of cigarettes from my pocket and offered them each one. I turned as though to walk around them, but one set his bloated, decaying hand on my shoulder and said, “Hang on a minute buddy, we need to have a chat.”
-- NEWSFLASH --
Marriage at stake?
With the Zombie Church’s recent offer of “eternal life through unholy matrimony,” many are questioning whether marriages between zombies should have a legal representation in state legislature. This reporter agrees with the local man recently quoted as saying “humanity: you’re either alive or you’re dead.”
In addition, social service workers have pointed out that adopted children will be faced with an “undead living environment.” A local church leader was heard to describe the issue as merely a “liberal ploy” with the overarching goal of “getting us to give a little on the gay thing.”
As of yet, the issue of marriage between the undead and not yet dead has not been raised.
I was frozen with fear, and stood motionless praying for a vial of holy water. The zombie with his hand on my arm used the other to calmly puff twice on the cigarette I’d given him. The smoke drifted out through a rupture on the left side of his skull, just above what used to be his ear but now looked more like a week old English muffin. With peanut butter.
“Don’t you think it’s a little over the top?”
“C’mon man, zombies in the office?”
“Oh that…” We stared at each other for a moment. He still hadn’t released my shoulder. “Horrifying isn’t it?”
“Are we supposed to represent laid off workers, being promised false hope by the stereotypical executive figure? Or maybe it’s depressed citizens, squeezed aesthetically by the chains of rational modern society until we’re nothing more than zombies?”
“Oh well, either of those would be fine.”
“I’ll bite you.”
“Please don’t.” We stared at each other for several moments. The office clock ticked sternly. Somewhere in the background, a coworker began screaming and was abruptly cut off. Then, one of the other security guard zombies broke the silence.
“Hey man can I get another cigarette?”
“Sure.” I handed him one.
-- NEWSFLASH --
Zombies demand national health care program! Conservative lawmakers writhe in fear!
Several zombies became extremely distressed this afternoon, when at a local water park, a substantial portion of their remaining flesh floated away or disintegrated while relaxing in “The Wave.”
Following this incident, many relatively well-spoken zombies made allegations against the U.S. government, noting that “this is the last industrialized country in the world without real health care for the poor.” Conservative lawmakers responded, citing facts from the bible to point out that “the Armageddon is surely upon us,” adding, “may God save our souls.”
A local mother of two was heard to ask, "who are the real zombies here anyway?"
“Alright man,” the security guard zombie began, “I’ll explain it to you like this. If true art features true reconciliation, then the only one of us in any way approaching that is the guy back there typing up love poems.”
“That guy is a dork. What about beating Mario 3 in under eleven minutes?”
“Phil Naciore, a famous semioticist, argues that zombies, and the success of zombie related films, is based on their value in cultural semantics as a symbol of decay, death, and ungodliness. Moreover, they embody a dismantling of our social and psychological landscape. Zombies contradict concepts of peaceful death, reliance on community, health, and religion. Since they exist as a counteractive force, a coming to terms or restoration of order is inevitable in any cognitive, story-telling process regarding them.”1
At this point I have to admit I began to get a little bored with the security guard’s speech. I’d already given out most of my cigarettes to his comrades, and I was more interested in getting on with my escape plan. I tried giving him cues by staring at the wall and tapping my foot ever so slightly, but he continued on.
“Yet irony, which has been the dominant form of these past pages, is ultimately destructive. It functions by removing an object from reality by referring to it in a way other than what is meant. However, this process of dealing with reality is inherently negative, for when a speaker successfully eliminates an object’s reality through irony, it "no longer becomes any reconciliation at all, but rather animosity"”2
The fluorescent lights flickered overhead. A zombie down the hall poured coffee into a Styrofoam cup and drank it immediately. Much of it spilled out through a tear in its cheek, steaming on the floor.
“Basically man, comedy is a completely inappropriate way to come to terms with a cultural symbol of decay and fear.“
But I interrupted him.
I reached deep into my pants and pulled out the shotgun I’d been hiding there. “Aarganm” The zombie moaned. I cocked the barrel quickly, aimed, and blew that zombie straight to hell. His compatriots looked at me puzzled, cigarettes still dangling from what was left of their greenish, rotting lips.
1Phil Naciore, Zombies and Shit: a Scatological Analysis of the Living Dead, 257.
2Søren Kierkegaard, The Concept of Irony, 312.