What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?
The main thing going on currently is the Somewhere in the Shadows giveaway which is going for 14 more days. This is a pretty good one. The top winner will receive all books from all of the contributing authors for Somewhere in the Shadows. It’s a Rafflecopter giveaway, which means you can get multiple entries for various reasons (i.e.- following the authors on Twitter, tweeting about the contest, following their blogs, etc…)
To enter the giveaway, click here.
To read my foreword and a brief review of Somewhere in the Shadows, click here.
But without further ado…
So I had an interesting conversation with a colleague the other day.
Actually, it was my wife and I who were having the conversation with a fellow faculty member at lunch when the topic of the end of the world came up. Yeah, it was a weird lunch, and I’m not sure how we ended up on that topic. I think it was when my wife asked the history teacher if it was just our current state of the world that seemed so polarized, or if mankind had cycled through this type of mentality like it cycled through so many other things.
Or maybe it was when the history teacher mentioned the planned community known as The Citadel in Idaho. For a simple description of what this community (read: “compound”) will be about, there is a banner at the top of their website saying “Get an Assault Rifle before it’s too late.”
Or maybe it was when I said that I had to go through pretty regular “media blackouts” because the news always seemed so bleak… as opposed to my wife who goes into withdrawals if she doesn’t get her NPR fix at least twice a week. At this point, my wife said that she did, however, wish she hadn’t watched the documentary “Surviving Progress” which basically said that whenever a civilization had hit the apex we appear to be at, there was no chance for recovery of that civilization.
Now I know that based on my past few posts it seems that I perhaps unnecessarily dwell on this topic (even after we’ve passed our 12/21/12 expiration date), but it’s fascinating to me (and given the popularity of shows such as “The Walking Dead,” I’m clearly not alone), but the comments made by the history teacher at this point in our conversation added a whole new dimension to my fascination.
He informed us that he would give the world about two weeks of chaos (be it via a financial collapse a la Fight Club or Y2K, or a zombie apocalypse) and if it didn’t get better, he wanted out. He said that he thought having a cyanide pill on hand would probably be a good idea.
And he came up with this on his own. He doesn’t like horror movies, so he hasn’t seen “The Walking Dead,” where I was first really exposed to the idea of people not wanting to survive. Most other books, movies and television shows of apocalyptic story lines stick pretty close to the assumption that all of us would be taken over by our basic survival instinct, even when things seemed hopeless. And I guess I’ve always bought into that idea as far as I would be concerned as well.
He even acknowledged the fact that we have this basic instinct. But he wouldn’t follow it. “I mean, what would you do with all of your time?” he asked, half-joking but also obviously serious.
A reasonable question. Well, I wouldn’t have to go to work, for one, I said. So what else do I do when I’m not working? Naturally the conversation turned toward survival, and the fact that most of our time would probably be spent finding and/or growing our food. My wife said we would have to relocate somewhere warmer. This apocalypse was sounding better and better.
“Yeah, I don’t want to go back to those days,” he said. “And can you imagine having kids?” He made some rather humorous comments about having to put his technologically-dependent children out of their misery.
Well, it was funny the way he said it. And over the humor, I had to admit that back when Y2K was a threat, I might’ve been a little excited about the possibilities of having to survive civilization’s imminent technological collapse, but I was also single with no kids.
I dunno. Thinking about it in terms of a more terrifying apocalypse like that of “The Walking Dead,” maybe that survival instinct wouldn’t be as strong (“I’d just let the zombies bite me,” the history teacher said. Clearly he hasn’t seen the show), but I still think in the case of a Y2K-esque collapse, I would accept the challenge.
The kids would just have to play outside when they got bored.
What do I want from you?
Just so you don’t think negatively of our history teacher, most of this conversation was in jest (as are most of our lunch conversations), but it does raise interesting questions. So what’s your take? Is it the survival plan or the cyanide pill for you? Whether joking or not, I was impressed that my colleague would admit possibly subscribing to the latter (he’s actually a pretty interesting guy in several other areas of his personality as well. I’m sure he’ll make a character in a story of mine at some point).
Don’t forget to enter the Somewhere in the Shadows giveaway at the link above.
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