A Quick Guide to Surviving the First Few Minutes of a Zombie Apocalypse

The Revelation of St John: 4. The Four Riders of the Apocalypse by Albrecht Durer

The first few minutes of any disaster are usually the most critical. In a fire, you need an escape plan. If a tornado is coming, you need to get to a place of safety. And if a zombie is lurching through your front door, you need to be prepared.One day a mom called her college-age son.

“Hello,” he said.

“Do you have anything within reach that could kill a zombie?” asked his mother.

“Um,” he said looking around at his desk, computer, and piles of clothes. “No.”

“You’re dead,” said his mother, and she hung up.

I don’t remember where I first heard that story, but it made a profound impact on me. Every now and again, I look at what is around me and I ask myself the question that the mother asked, “Do I have anything within reach that could kill a zombie?”

For those of you who just stumbled across my blog without any pop culture references to draw from, a zombie is a reanimated corpse with superhuman strength.

There are two main types of zombies: Slow zombies – the ones that stumble blindly forward saying “Braaaaaiiiins” and grunting; and Fast Zombies – the ones that still enough intelligence to solve basic problems and set traps for the unwary.

There are myriad ways to create zombies (viral mutations, summons from a witch doctor, etc.) but only a few ways to kill them, all of which have to do with rendering the zombie’s brain incapacitated.

The most traditional way to deal with a zombie is by cutting off its head. I happen to own a viking sword replica, so I’m pretty well set here. Also, the sword is good for would-be future boyfriends of my daughters, and I think sharpening the blade is more intimidating than the “father polishing a gun” routine.

If you do have a firearm, you can shoot a zombie in the head, so long as the damage is sufficient to destroy the brain. When shooting then, it is best to “double tap” or shoot the head twice to ensure success.

If you have a few minutes and enough rage, you can also use blunt instruments like baseball bats and tire irons and chair legs and so on. The problem here is speed. Can you render the zombie’s brain useless before the zombie returns the favor? Remember, they have superhuman strength.

I’m guessing acid would be successful as well, but I don’t remember seeing any movies where this has been the main weapon for dispatching the undead. Also, most pop music.

So the first step to preparedness is having a weapon within reach at all times. After that, you need the other basics of Maslow’s hierarchy. But in the first few minutes, make sure you have a weapon.

Next, try to make it to one of these properties. Good luck.

6 thoughts on “A Quick Guide to Surviving the First Few Minutes of a Zombie Apocalypse

  1. That’s why I run. I don’t have to be faster than the Zombie, I only have to be faster than the other guy.
    A friend just got me started with Walking Dead. I work from home. I can’t have it on while I work. I tried that the other day. I found myself with my fingers hovering over the keyboard, staring at Netflix as the papers sat on my desk and did not enter their own data for me.

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