When the zombies come, will your kitchen be ready?
With the continued awesomeness of The Walking Dead, I feel that it is now time for me to weigh in on one of the most pressing and controversial issues of our time: apocalypse preparation.
What’s that? You don’t take the zombie Armageddon seriously? Well, Gangnam Style just became the most watched video ever. In other words, the most-viewed piece of artwork in the world is a video featuring a Korean pop star riding an imaginary horse. Tell me that doesn’t spell the End of Days.
It was actually while watching Joss Whedon endorse Mitt Romney just prior to the U.S. election that I got to thinking. I mean, he sure has a lot of canned goods. Too many perhaps. The more I think about it, the more I realize that, while Joss Whedon sure makes good movies, he is way off-base on apocalypse preparedness. He is, in fact, guilty of the most basic pre-zombie wasteland mistake: canned goods will get you killed.
Again, don’t believe me? I submit to you the following argument. Below, in no special order, are a few of the many problems with canned foods:
1) They run out. Sure, Spam has its own key, but once the Spam is gone, it’s gone. You can’t refrigerate it either, so once you’ve opened it, you’d better be ready to eat the whole thing. Can you imagine eating a whole canned ham? How about outrunning a zombie with your belly full of an entire canned ham?
2) They’re heavy. If you could just hold up in your own home comfortably for years at a time, then sure, canned goods rock! But we might be talking about a full-blown zombie apocalypse here, and that means you need to keep moving. Carrying all of your food in cans means that you are also carrying a lot of water and tin, which are stupid heavy. And do you really want your last thoughts to be about how the cocktail wieners in your backpack got you eaten by the living dead? I sure don’t.
3) They turn into poison when dented. The thing about dented cans is that you’re gambling when you eat them. Also, since the bacterial pathogen is usually tasteless and odourless, you are basically stuck guessing whether or not it’s poison. In today’s pre-zombie world, since we have luxuries like hospitals and medical coverage, that’s a bet you can maybe afford to lose. But in the zombie wasteland? No way. How would you like to be huddled around a dented can of Alpha-Getti wondering if it was going to convert you to zombie bait?
No, I don’t think my plan will call for many canned goods at all. I mean, these are only the biggest reasons I can muster. I might also have mentioned how cans are tougher to access and often require a specialized tool to open (unless it has its own key). You can fight each other for the last tin of pineapple if you want. What if some other jerk hoardes all of the can openers? Didn't think of that, did you?
Instead, here are a few things you’ll find in my apocalypse pantry, again in no specific order:
1) Salt. That’s right, salt. You need a couple of grams per day to exist. Try taking all the salt out of your diet, just try. Why do you think that cows like salt licks? Survival in the post-human world without a steady supply of salt is both bland and impossible. It’s a nutrient, an antiseptic, a preservative, a cleaning agent, and (once the canned goods have all been eaten) probably also currency. In the end times, salt is power.