Surviving a Zombie Attack

Perhaps the best part of zombie movies is the part where the audience screams “Dummy! Don’t do that!” and when they talk amongst themselves about what they would do in that scenario.

When I was a kid and first saw “Night of the Living Dead,” I wasn’t impressed with a farmhouse, but I did think a condo high rise in the city might not be too bad. I'd get some folks I trust, we'd take furnishings from the second floor and fill up the lobby, totally clutter it with shit and then nail shut the doors just in case, so we could have the other 20 or so floors to ourselves and all the supplies in them.

Everyone considers what they’d do. I went online to find that there’s actually a huge group of people hypothesizing how to handle the zombie apocalypse.

In the book “Infectious Disease Modelling Research Progress” by Canadian mathematicians Jean Michel Tchuenche and C. Chiyaka they presented the scenario of a zombie attack and used mathematics to determine that the best way to deal it is to “hit hard and hit often.”

“An outbreak of zombies is likely to be disastrous, unless extremely aggressive tactics are employed against the undead,” the authors wrote. “It is imperative that zombies are dealt with quickly, or else we are all in a great deal of trouble.”

On this site they suggest these 10 tips:

1. Clear the Room: There's nothing worse than stepping into a room only to be set upon by a horde of brain-hungry zombies. A team of four armed shooters can easily clear a room if they all stand against the nearest wall: one body in each corner and two in the middle. This position proves optimal for quickly dispatching of a room full of the reanimated.

2. Never Turn Your Back on the Enemy: Shambling isn't just for zombies. Three live humans can stand with their backs together and carefully rotate through the room, ensuring that all eyes are facing outward and no one falls victim to a surprise attack.

3. The Fine Line: For those lucky enough to amass a relatively large army of live humans, the Fine Line is the best way to fend off roving zombie hordes. Simply form two lines of armed persons, one line in front of the other. Have the front line shoot while the back line holds. When the front line runs out of ammo, the back line steps in while the front line reloads. Tragically, the Squad's training zombie, Billy the Hunter, died while the Squad demonstrated this technique.

4. Zombies Are the Least of Your Worries: It's bad enough that you have to deal with the zombified masses, who are tireless, feel no pain, and greatly outnumber healthy human beings. But perhaps even more deadly are the humans who simply can't cope with the new world order. It's best if you keep a psychologist on hand who can identify and subdue such persons before they embark on a murderous rampage that makes the zombies look as ferocious as fluffy kittens.

5. Choose Your Weapons Wisely: Not all weapons work for all people, and the trendiest zombie-fighting armaments aren't always the best. When in doubt, melee weapons are a fine tool against the undead, but think twice before picking up that giant hammer. As satisfying as squishing zombie skull may be, swinging the hammer creates a sizable arc that gives zombies plenty of time to nibble at your armpits. GLAZS advises that you invest in a machete, which is cheap, lightweight, and neatly separates a zombie's head from its bodies. As for ranged weapons, you may want to reconsider that sawed-off shotgun you're so fond of. Bolt action rifles are both powerful and accurate, without the ammunition restrictions of the close-range shotgun.

6. Windows Are Not Your Friend: Zombies have a nasty habit of crashing through glass windows, so it's best to choose a hideout with as few ground level windows as possible. Steer clear of malls, coffee shops, and boutique outlets in favor of Costco, BJs, Sam's Club, or any other large warehouse. If you find yourself trapped in your house, it's best to hightail it up to the attic, which the uncoordinated zombies will have trouble reaching. Basements, even windowless ones, spell trouble.

7. No Brains for Oil: If you're traveling with a group, you may consider fleeing by minivan or SUV, but be warned that the gas mileage and rollover rates might be a literal killer. If you're traveling alone, it's best to take a high miles per gallon vehicle, like a dirt bike, or, better yet, grab a bicycle and escape the zombies under your own replenishable power.

8. Fight World War Z with TNT: Using dynamite around the undead is a tricky proposition; the right amount of explosives can blow them to bits, but you might get cremated yourself. It's better to stave off those desiccated corpse with a controlled burn. But, GLASZ's demolitions expert warns, make sure it's a fire you can contain. A raging wildfire could prove far more deadly than the zombies themselves.

9. Animals: Friend or Foe? Animals can be invaluable allies at the end of the world, but the zombie infection could render them more hazard than help. If the zombie plague is viral, it can infect any living cells, causing even the most inhuman animals to exhibit flesh-craving symptoms. GLASZ members ask: Would you rather fight off a zombie human — or a zombie lion?

10. Suit Up: Perhaps the best way to prepare for the day the dead rise from their graves is to assemble the perfect zombie-fighting attire. Avoid brain spray-back by wearing goggles and covering your face with a non-porous material. Use plate mail or leather to create a bite-proof body suit. Kevlar gloves (provided to some food industry workers) can be worn as is or refashioned into impenetrable sleeves, allowing you to fend off zombie bites by holding up your forearms. Riot shields also add an extra layer of protection and make the zombie head squishing that much easier.

Admittedly, it’s good to be prepared. Zombies might not happen, but to think about such scenarios is to be ready for anything, to think in steps, to be prepared to live instead of resigned to die. I enjoy such mind puzzles just to keep myself alert and to have a stimulating conversation.

Let's start a conversation: What would your plan be?


  1. there is no plan be, as for me, i am just getting through, my dear.

  2. I seriously would like to live like a training ninja and when the time comes, I'd be ready. If it doesn't, I'll just apply my techniques to the bastards on the road with a cell phone to their ears while they're driving 75 mph on the highway occupying two lanes at one time.

  3. Damn, who would have thought that studying medieval history in college would have a practical application?

  4. Hee hee--so true! You have an edge on us, my friend.

  5. as disappointing as it may sound, i think i am not going to make it.

  6. Well, BD, the good news is that as zombies are an impossibility (see tomorrow's post), you will not have to worry.

  7. Learn to cook with very few ingredients, very important.

  8. Thanks for helping my prepare a little bit more for the upcoming Z-Day. I look forward to the day when I can go around the world hunting what's left of the world's breweries and distilleries

  9. Haha. Yeah. I agree. I think drinks are on the house at that point.

  10. I would become a badass ninja, be in awesome shape, and defend my friends and family... or just let the bastards eat me.


  11. Hey, if you're in awesome shape, you won't have enough fat to be good to eat, so perhaps being really muscular and gristly is the best solution, sort of like citronella is to mosquitoes.

  12. I would find a ranger tower in a national park and set up a sniper's roost with a case of Ron Centenario, some friends, and some spices to use on the deer and elk that walk by. Then we'd just kick back and cackle while society burns.

  13. You know, Aaron, I considered a fire tower scenario, but then I remembered the movie "Wrong Turn" and it seemed like a place to get stuck. Imagine if there's zombies all over the base of the tower and now you have no food or water? Hmm....

  14. Dang! Zombie expert! and I thought I knew it all! lol.


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