Planning for a zombie invasion is easy and fun. Getting eaten alive isn't.
MYTH: If you can act like a zombie, you're safe.
Everyone has a zombie impression. Except for Uncle Wally. Who's too scared to help us write this column.
Some people can actually do some pretty good zombie imitations. The Reluctant Dragon is, presumably, one of them. Does this mean she is safe?
Bad example: "Brian ... I need ... Brian! Moooooaning ..." - Caboose
Common example: "There is a saying that goes something like, "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em." And I must say I pride myself on my zombie impression. =D" - The Reluctant Dragon
Better example: "I'll gain authority within a zombie herd until they all obey me. Then I will subjugate other zombie herds and eventually rule the world!"
Best example: "I'll smear myself with zombie juice* and hide in plain sight."
FACT: Disguises only guarantee your destruction.
Let us begin by making the very forgiving assumption that you are capable of maintaining a zombie impression 24/7, and not engage in any giveaway human behaviors. I mean, it's not like you would get freaked out standing in the midst of millions of swarming undead who would eat you if they knew who you really were, right? So that's assumed. Moving on.
We don't want to be too insensitive; after all, this is a post-Obama world. But we're just going to say it straight:
Most zombies are stupid.
They don't stop to wonder if the prey they just found might be another zombie. They just track down fresh meat and dig in. Many are effectively blind, but they all have an acute sense of smell. Sadly, The Reluctant Dragon's zombie impression - so convincing at parties and from a distance - would have results something like this:
ZOMBIES: Moan moan.
RELUCTANT DRAGON: Moan moan.
ZOMBIES: Moan ... sniff sniff sniff.
RELUCTANT DRAGON: Uh-oh.
RELUCTANT DRAGON: Dangit ...
ZOMBIES: Munch munch.
ALL TOGETHER NOW: Moan moan.
You get the idea.
Zombie juice*, combined with an effective zombie impression, may be enough to convince the undead legions that you are one of them. Alas, zombies are barely safer than humans. When cramped or irritated, such as when fighting for shelter away from sunlight, zombies turn on each other. Sometimes they just do it for spite. The average life expectancy of a zombie is just a pitiable two years. The plurality of those deaths come not at the hands of human survivors, but from other zombies.
As the zombie apocalypse pans out (this is several years in) and food becomes increasingly scarce, zombies will begin to gnaw on each other. Eventually this will give way to full-on feeding frenzies. When the buffet opens, the last place you want to be is right in the middle of it.
Good thinking, Reluctant Dragon. You'll have to think that way if you want to survive. Zombie impressions (especially fortified with juice*) can be a useful supplement to anyone's zombie plan. But they are not the solution. Keep looking.
Think you can outdo Reluctant Dragon? Post your own zombie survival plan for a free expert analysis.
* No, you really don't want to know how zombie juice is made. You just don't.