I doubt anyone alive today, especially those of us lucky enough to be living the high life in Europe and North America, will ever experience an apocalyptic type scenario. Our sweet, pleasant, easy, lazy lives will continue until we die of something biologically apocalyptic like cancer, it seems that it’s eating it’s way steadily through the human race without any means to combat it. Yep, cancer might eat us alive a horde of the undead won’t.
The image above is from my copy of The Walking Dead Compendium One, like it says on the front cover of the image on the left. It’s a hefty piece of reading material a kill a man dead with one blow type edition. I probably don’t have to explain what The Walking Dead is, but that’s not going to stop me. The Walking Dead is a monthly comic book series published by Image Comics created, and still written, by Robert Kirkman and illustrated by Charlie Adlard, there’s a hugely popular TV series based upon the comic book.
The premise is this: civilisation as we know it, or just the United States of America, has been consumed by the greedy mouths of zombie hordes, though in both the comic book and the TV series, and the spin-off show Fear, the undead are never referred to as zombies thus establishing the fact this fictional world isn’t our world it just resembles it. Perhaps it’s an alternate Earth just one of many in a vast sprawling Multi-Verse.
For the purpose of this blog post I’m going to, pointlessly, examine the statement on the back cover of the giant compendium.
How many hours are in a day when you don’t spend half of them watching television? I suppose if, like me, you very rarely watch TV then you already know the answer to that question. I don’t know how anyone could spend half their day watching TV. Most days I’m at work and with travel that’s half my day, I have maybe six or seven hours of free time during a work day. I think. Up an hour before I leave for work, arrive home around 16:00 retire to bed at 21:00 and read until 22:00 and not one hour of my day spent watching TV, not because I have better things to do, although it is true that I do, not because I think I’m superior to TV addicts, because I’m not truly I am not, the reason I don’t spend much time watching TV is because there aren’t many TV shows that appeal to my interests. At the moment I watch, via download, Elementary, Limitless, iZombie and The Big Bang Theory, naturally they don’t eat up much of my time. A blog post, like this, takes an hour to write pen to paper and about another twenty minutes to type, find suitable images, edit and then post. The rest of my spare time is spent partaking of much needed exercise and teaching myself to write fiction (comic books) competently which is very time consuming there aren’t enough hours in a day for learning and then making attempts at creating. I wish I had more time but wishes are utterly pointless.
In the advent of an apocalypse, of any nature, having all that free time to build and secure shelter, to forage for food and drink, would be so physically exhausting that with the fall of night sleep would be the only option.
When is the last time any of us really worked to get something we wanted? With credit cards and online shopping if we want something we just go get it. No fuss, no hard work, just nip onto Amazon (which will one day rule the World) and within a matter of minutes place an order, or orders, and if opting for next day delivery have the items delivered directly to us in virtually no time at all. I’ve lived that life accumulating unwanted debt as a means to acquire frivolous material possessions, it didn’t make me happy, obligated to pay the debt sixty hours a week at work were necessary. These days I live happily debt free I work and save for anything I want or go without. For example, I would like a new shiny MacBook, and though I can afford one I can’t justify the purchase so I go without my old MacBook 2009 works just fine. I’d like to visit places in the United States a different place twice a year from now until the day I expire, I fucking LOVE America but the reality is I can’t afford to visit America every year so I go without, it’s not detrimental to my health or wellbeing it’s just the reality of my situation no matter how much I love America, and wish to live there, I should instead love my home nation, Britain, and be grateful that I live here.
How long has it been since any of us needed something that we wanted? We need oxygen, food, water, shelter, warmth, some of us also need family, friends, social interaction, the Internet, motor cars, personal phones and perhaps an endless list of other things. I need at least one day a week just to myself, an alone day, a day that means I can escape from the larger world. I confess I have weaknesses one of those weaknesses is that constant contact with other people causes me misery and depression and I don’t want to be miserable or depressed a break is needed so I can catch my breath and experience happiness.
I also need reading material and/or movies and TV box sets. Naturally I can survive without such things but I’d prefer not to. I don’t think I’ve ever needed something I’ve wanted. I do recall a jaunt to London, many years ago, and walking about the sprawling metropolis so caught up with the atmosphere of the Big Smoke that I forgot to drink, or eat, by the evening I’d gone over eight hours without and I really needed something cool to drink the memory of that longing has brought on a little dehydration and so I’m off for a cup (mug) of tea, and maybe a few cookies to accompany.
And I’m back.
I don’t think, believe, I ever need anything I want. Right at this point in time I want pizza, I really want pizza, I love pizza, but I’ve been eating too much pizza and piled on a few (actually a lot) of unwanted pounds in weight so I’ve initiated a pizza ban to last the entirety of January and made the decision that pizza should be a treat enjoyed a few times a year not a few times a week. My ban is kind of like Dry January, I’m not sure if other nations have this Dry January fad, it’s a January free from alcohol some Britons claim they need a month without alcohol because they’re always drunk. I’m not much of a Briton I rarely drink alcohol could go the rest of my life without but pizza I wouldn’t want to live without. Life in a post apocalyptic world would be a life without pizza. The horror! The horror!
Imagining a life in a post apocalyptic world leads me to believe it would be like Cormac McCarthy’s The Road, adapted into a bleak movie.
Food and clean water scare. All life almost obliterated. Rape gangs terrorising survivors. Being eaten alive a real possibility. Death would be a preferable option.
I often imagine living in a post apocalyptic world, I dream about surviving in a post apocalyptic world and I’m either Chuck Heston:
Or Don Johnson:
But imagination, dreams, are nothing like reality and a post apocalyptic world is the last place I really want to be.