The Origin of the Great Infection aka mini zombapocalypse

No Artificial Growth Hormones

No Artificial Growth Hormones (Photo credit: Tillamook Cheese)

The number one question asked at the Zombie Emergency Relief Organization’s educational sessions is why the mainstream media didn’t alert the citizenry to the Great Infection (aka mini zombie apocalypse). As none of us are associated with the mainstream media, we can only guess at the reasons for the cover up. What we can do is present the events that we believe led to the Great Infection.

The Great Infection was not a random event or a deliberate act of terrorism. It was human error. The Centers for Disease Control  and Prevention (CDC) had been actively studying a progressive neurological disease that affects cattle called BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) aka mad cow disease. Strong epidemiologic and laboratory evidence suggested that  BSE exposure led to the development of a progressive neurological disease in humans called Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD). Unfortunately, the CDC did not have the solid evidence to ban the material thought to carry BSE such as pituitary hormones.

Cratchit Nutraceuticals, a company producing pituitary-derived human growth hormone (HGH) failed to follow proper procedure both in screening and acquiring potentially BSE infected material.  This led to products contaminated with CJD. Their proprietary formula is suspected of causing a CJD mutation that caused the zombification of small-statured children taking the medication. For reasons only known to medical epidemiologists, the majority of these short statured children were located in the Northeast section of the United States.

Cratchit Nutraceuticals also compounded human growth hormone tablets and injections under the name of Tiny No More Supplements and Old No More supplements. These were manufactured using the discarded byproducts of the injectable human growth hormone and encapsulated in pill form. The market for these pills was predominantly Southern California.

Celebrity endorsements and the increasing desire for  aging baby boomers to restore their vigor led to an explosion in the use of off-label and internet-pharmacy dispensing of these tainted HGH products. Easy access and lax standards allowed the products to be shipped without appropriate testing.

The first wave of attacks happened predominantly in middle schools, gyms, and on movie sets. The violence was alternately blamed on “normal childhood beahvior,”  “roid rage,”  and “temperamental actors.”  A massive containment effort in Los Angeles failed when infected actors and athletes, lured by the promise of a telethon, escaped into a nearby Megachurch.  Over 2,500 religious faithful were infected.

Fearful of sparking a panic, the government imposed news blackouts and cordoned off suspect locations including most Gold’s Gyms, acting studios, professional sports stadiums, and middle schools in the Northeast. It was felt that these actions would stop the infection from spreading. They were wrong.

Reaction to the infection varied. Actors and actresses initially continued to attend awards ceremonies and movie screenings, attacking and infecting more individuals. Celebrity athletes refused to curtail their schedules, leading to several horrific incidents at sports stadiums. Parents of infected children attempted to protect their children by keeping them at home and hidden. This failed strategy led to entire families succumbing to the infection. The religious faithful gathered in large healing circles, providing a perfect medium for the infection to spread.

By this time the rest of the world had learned of our problem and basically quarantined the United States. Harsh measures passed in Washington, D.C. led to a shoot on sight policy for all suspected of harboring the infection.  This led to a secondary wave of deaths as trigger happy citizens blasted anyone they felt was remotely threatening.

Our organization intervened for the children and passed a special Presidential proclamation guaranteeing sanctuary for infected children under the age of 17.

The mainstream media alternately attributed the above events to bath salts, a new form of synthetic marijuana, and religious hysteria. An amendment to the Patriot Act prevented anyone from posting or publicizing the number of people infected or the means used to stop the infection. This virtual news blackout led to large swaths of the country being unaware of what was happening, and unable to respond appropriately.

Finally, in the biggest mobilization of armed forces in our country’s history, a three day Labor Day Weekend sweep deputized every non-infected man, woman, and child over thirteen to systematically search for and contain people with signs of the infection. Rumors of a mass burial site in the Grand Canyon have not been, and will never be confirmed.

Once the infection was contained and the products implicated destroyed and taken off the market, small bands of Navy SEALS were charged with dealing with the very small number of infected still wandering freely on the periphery of our society.

The entire process, from the first roll out of the contaminated HGH products to the Labor Day Weekend Sweep, took approximately eight months. Several high profile projects proposed by Ken Burns, Steven Spielberg, and Stephen Colbert have been placed on hold indefinitely. The official government records of this action, code named “One to the Head” have been sealed for one hundred years. As you now know, our orphaned zombie children are truly innocents in this episode. Corporate greed, lax government regulation, and internet prescribing are the real villains in this sad chapter of the American novel.

I Feed Zombies so You Don’t Have To

If you believe popular stereotypes, a zombie wants nothing more than to dine on a menu of human flesh and brains. In fact, most people believe zombies will bypass dogs, cats, rabbits, and even cows to track down the limited amount of humans available and eat them.

Night of the Living Dead screenshot -- a young...

Night of the Living Dead screenshot — a young zombie (Kyra Schon) and her victim (Karl Hardman). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This weekend the SyFy channel‘s feature, “Rise of the Zombies,” perpetuated this falsehood through the use of repetitive scenes of zombies eating people, mostly eating their intestines.  Most movies rely on intestine eating as their go to graphic, certainly its shown more than the focus of brain eating. I think filmmakers enjoy using the intestines because they are easy to make, can feed a mob of ravenous zombies and ripping open a stomach is easier than gaining access through someone’s head.  Logically, unless one believes zombies possess superhuman strength a la vampires, their ability to either detach a head or punch through a skull make it highly unlikely they can reach the brains they (supposedly) desire. In K. Bennett’s book, Pay Me In Flesh, zombie at law Mallory Caine uses an “ice pick with a hook” to get her daily dose of brains, but the zombies of film don’t have those kind of thinking skills and Ms. Caine is not your usual zombie.

Prior to the Great Infection our knowledge of their feeding habits wasn’t informed by the reality of a zombie diet. Our first batch of zombie child refugees presented a dilemma for staffers. None of us were interested in procuring the freshly dead (or making the live dead) in order to feed the children, but we all acknowledged that they needed nourishment. Because of our committment to the environment, we originally hoped they would flourish on an all plant diet. Since over half of the world depends on rice for 80% of it’s diet, we started our experiments there.

In a method reminiscent of Forrest Gump and his shrimp, we tried cooked rice, raw rice, rice balls, fried rice, rice pilaf, dirty rice, and rice and beans using white rice, brown rice, short grained rice, long grained rice, wild rice, basmati rice, and jasmine rice. No matter how we cooked it, it our zombie children turned up their noses. In desperation we even died it red and forced it into sausage casings. No luck. A similar variety of pastas and beans met the same fate. Our plant-based offerings rotted in the holding pens while the zombie children howled in hunger.

Next we tried a variety of fruits and vegetables. Our greatest success came with the use of grapes and watermelon. We hoped the zombies would think the grapes were like eyeballs and the watermelon, with its hard rind and soft middle, a brain substitute. Sadly, though the children loved playing with the fruit, they stubbornly refused to eat it. Many was the night that the communal cafeteria was covered in watermelon seeds and grape skins while the children gnashed their teeth in frustration.

Finally, in spite of  our reservations, we experimented with meat. Being sensitive to the issues of world hunger, the environmental impact of meat-eating, and not wishing to divert food targeted for humans, we searched for meat byproducts that were currently discarded because there was no salable market.

We quickly chose cow brains.

Mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), is a disease which literally makes the brains and spinal cords of infected animals become sponge-like. Interestingly enough, symptoms of mad cow disease are similar to symptoms of the Infection. Cattle infected with BSE will become increasingly aggressive, react excessively to noise or touch, and eventually become ataxic . The National Ataxia Foundation explains:  The word ataxia is often used to describe a symptom of incoordination which can be associated with infections, injuries, other diseases, or degenerative changes in the central nervous system.  Though humans that eat meat infected with BSE cow brains can develop Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease or CJD, zombies already have an ataxic disorder and are immune to CJD. If our zombie kids ate cow brains, they’d be diverting potentially dangerous cow brains away from human consumption.

Armed with this knowledge, we purchased large amounts of cow brains and attempted to feed  them to the zombie children. At first, we were unsuccessful. The smell of rotting cow’s brains filled the cafeteria and covered the campus. Undeterred, we experimented with serving the brains at different temperatures until we found that most zombies loved brains heated to  98.6.  Our original warmers, lines of extra-large crockpots, didn’t provide a consistent temperature, cooked the brains,  and could only fit a limited amount of brains. Luckily, our staff members are inquisitive, persistent, and willing to try new things.

Natural-Beef ( ...item 3..St...

Natural-Beef ( …item 3..Stop Feeding Cows Chicken Manure (Posted: 04/26/2012 8:52 am) … (Photo credit: marsmet491)

Eventually we constructed a conveyor belt that dips the cow brains into a warm water blood bath and heats them to the appropriate temperature without damaging the integrity of their uncooked state. When we rolled this out, the zombie children moaned in delight. Watching them stuff their little faces with warm handfuls of cow brains truly was a watershed moment for our organization. After that, it was only a matter of finding slaughter houses willing to sell and ship their unwanted cow brains to our haven.

In our zeal to be responsible stewards of  the environment, we also set up a localvore program where we purchase deer, elk, and goat brains from local hunters and small farmers for the children.  This has provided economic gains for local businesses.

Your donation to Z.E.R.O. not only feeds the zombie kids, it also minimizes the chance of mad cow disease transmission, and supports small business. We don’t mind feeding the children so you don’t have to, but we need donations to do it.

We will be providing information on how to direct donations to our organization in future posts.