Updated: Dec 10, 2019
Part of self reliance is learning the necessary skills and being prepared. Preparation is absolutely key to success, and can even make up for the lack of some skills. It's so important that even the Center for Disease Control has a section on their website for Zombie Preparedness. Now first off, Zombies in the traditional sense are not real and the CDC is only using the Zombie craze as a way to reach the younger crowds for emergency preparedness. As most of you reading this know, if you're prepared for the zombie apocalypse, you are prepared for everything else that could go wrong.
The CDC has a zombie preparedness blog so people can share ideas and get more information how to prepare. They also have developed a classroom curriculum for teachers to help get middle school aged kids aware of preparedness. The curriculum ranges from role-playing activities to poster contests to running emergency response simulations... kinda like the fire drills we did as kids, but way more fun. So what they are really preparing for is everything but a true zombie apocalypse.
The traditional type of zombie is literally undead or the dead reanimated, so what happens to a dead body? Well, everything starts to deteriorate. One of the first things to happen is the coagulation of the blood, so all the blood splatter everywhere in the movies is laughably unrealistic.
The only blood you would see would come from the living that just became a buffet for the zombies. The brain dies very quickly without oxygen so any function, if any at all, would be minimal, and would definitely not include walking and eating.
As the brain goes, so do the nerves, eyesight, hearing, and mobility. If there is any mobility you also have to remember there will be muscle atrophy, zombies will be very weak and fragile.
So as far as we know the traditional zombie is not real, but there are some really convincing explanations that can cause zombie like behavior. In 2012 a Florida man believed to taken a drug known as bath salts or Flakka, ripped off his clothes and then started eating a homeless mans face. The officer on the scene repeatedly asked the man to stop with only growls in response, then the man faced the officer and soon after the officer shot the man four times killing the zombie-like aggressor. Just imagine what must have been going through the officer's mind when he arrived on the scene.
This is what was left of the homeless mans face, his nose, one eye, eye lids, and skin all gone down to the bone!
No one can deny that this doesn't look like zombie behavior! Again in Florida 2016 a stand out college student was subdued trying to eat another man's face. The standout college student first stabbed a couple to death and proceeded to eat the dead man's face. This again the cause for this was also believed to be bath salts or Flakka, a drug that causes excited delirium. Flakka is what simulates fast moving zombie like behavior like in the movies 28 days later and World War Z. Drugs and viruses are possible real world scenarios that could cause a outbreak to trigger a zombie apocalypse that could actually happen.
Fast-moving zombies, not actually undead corpses, but living humans infected by a virus, are a real possibility. Fast-moving zombies could have full brain function with the ability to out-think their enemy, namely you. Fast-moving zombies are what we really need to be prepared for. So the question is how do we prepare for this? More of everything is the answer, but also rethinking your tactics when facing the fast-moving threat.
CDC encourages preparing a kit and supplies that will last for at least three days. For a virus outbreak and crazed people running the street, you need supplies for a much longer period of time. But how long? The World Health Organization stated on their website the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa was from 2014 to 2016. That is two years with a ton of resources and money to control the Ebola virus outbreak. With a Zombie virus outbreak, emergency services will be gone, when you dial 911, no one will be coming to save you with the all the resources of WHO at their disposal. So you can imagine how much longer before things could ever get under control, much less back to 'normal.'
The supplies will need to last as long as possible; it's not realistic for everyone to be able to store and keep supplies that can last a year or longer. So, gather as much as you can afford. One way to supplement your supplies is to get your neighbors involved. Preparing as a community increases your odds of surviving exponentially. You don't need to even mention zombies, which might turn people off and prevent them from wanting to participate. Have the community prep for other disasters like earthquakes, nuclear war, or just simply mention the possibility of a virus outbreak - the Ebola outbreak was recent enough. Only mention the possibility of a virus that would mimic zombie-like behavior to the neighbors you are closest with.
So how will you prepare? Will you bug in or will you bug out? What will your tactics be? Share in the comments!