Episode 414: What’s Plan B?

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Zombie Cliche Lookout: What Now?

In the best of times, it’s pretty frustrating when your plan falls apart. In the worst of times – like when there’s a couple of dozen zombies outside – it can be catastrophic. That’s why it’s so important to be flexible and creative. If you can remain calm and look at options that other people might overlook, you’re a lot better prepared to get yourself out of trouble than the average person.

Classic wisdom tells us that “No plan survives contact with the enemy.” This is most likely true, improvisation is a necessity even when things are going well because there’s no such thing as a static situation. Variables are always changing, and you need to change with them.

Or, you know, get eaten by zombies. Whatever you think is best.

About this Episode:

I really like Brent. He’s a fun character because he’s just completely clueless and self-absorbed. I know a few people like that in real life, and they’re not a lot of fun to be around. In a fictional story, however, they’re generally a good time.

Discussion Question: Head Skills and Hand Skills

Surviving the zombie apocalypse is going to involve more than just shooting zombies in the face and chopping them up with machetes. You’ve got a lot to worry about. Food, water, medicine, and shelter are all going to be priorities. That means that, in order to survive, you’re going to have to be able to do more than sit in front of a computer and create spreadsheets (I’m awesome at spreadsheets).

Based on your job, hobbies, and experiences, what could you bring to bear on these challenges? If you enjoy hunting, for instance, that’s a way to produce meat. Do you do your own home improvements and maintenance? That mechanical ability might be very useful in building or improving/improvising a shelter.

21 thoughts on “Episode 414: What’s Plan B?”

  1. I’m hoping Murphy can hold onto enough of the supplies in the wheelbarrow while Brent wheels them and Murphy to the car! 😀

    It looks a bit tricky but I think they can pull it off if Dave can make the supplies balance enough to make it look realistic! 😀

    • I always struggling with balancing stuff like that. That’s why I cheat so much with stick-tac. I love that stuff.

    • You read my mind, BrickVoid. I *so* want to see Brent toss Murphy in the wheelbarrow and run through the approaching hoard of zombies! 🙂

      • So Brent has to give up the food to fix the problem he made, which does not solve the problem he and the others left to solve?

        Oh yeah, throw him to the zombies.

  2. Typo alert: Zombie cliche lookout, third sentence, “flex able” should be flexible! 😀

    Discussion question, third last word: Improving could be improvising, would fit better IMHO but that’s a borderline case! 😀

    • Fixed both. I did “improving/improvising” for the second one, since both apply.

      Thank you, sir.

  3. Well, I am a nurse, with a tech ham radio license. I am interested in preventing infectious disease and endorsing hygiene in controlling it. We rely so much upon technology in medicine that I am afraid I am not very good for pioneer-era stuff, like setting a bone. I am pretty sure I could suture a wound, assuming no arterial bleeding. As for medicine, well, antibiotics and pain killers are the two to get. The former are fairly easy, the latter are rarer than hens’ teeth since the latest offensive in the “war on drugs”. I’ve got a lot of textbooks on medical procedures; but I’ve never put any of them into practice, like delivering a baby, for instance. I would have to try, in a pinch; but I definitely wouldn’t enjoy it.

    I do enjoy hunting and fishing; but I hope to rely more upon trotlines, jug-fishing, and traps to gather protein. I like raised-bed gardening, too.

    I think my biggest weakness is in fixing cars. Anymore I don’t even change my own oil (although when I was dating my wife I used to do a lot of the PM on her car, just to show off). I’d like to get back into it. I just haven’t the time or money. I’m of a mind, though, that we’ll only need cars in the short-term. If the disaster lasts more than about six months, or disables infrastructure on a national level being able to rebuild a carburetor won’t do any good anyway.

    • I love that you used to do more work on cars just to show off. The things we do to impress women.

      • Yeah, I also used to have more room to work on the cars. We’re more limited now; but I am working on improving that situation.

  4. I wonder if Murphy’s trying to convey a a snappy retort to Brent’s rather obvious question in panel 3? 😀

    • He’s probably a little pissed over the pellet he took to the leg.

      My sappy retort might involve throwing Brent to the zombies.

      • Yeah, I wouldn’t be too happy about that either.

      • Would that depend on circumstances? Let’s say it’s the same person, but he’s just stopped over 25 zombies from getting to both of you. He made a lot more noise, sure, but if he can kill zombies and still get to you while remaining uninfected, perhaps he’s worth something to you and your group after all.

        This assumes of course that he’s got the shotgun and enough ammo to fire at 25 zombies or more.

        • So you’re saying is what if John Rambo just went through zombies like poop through a goose, then his partner accidentally shot him, should his partner pack him out?

          Is that the scenario?

    • I think you’re right, BV.

  5. In response to something Bo said the other day, what’s the ‘least plausible’ (worst) prep plan you’ve heard or read about in recent time?

    • Awesome discussion question. I’m using that.

      • And if you subcategorize that into choice of vehicle, mine would probably trump all but something even more ungainly! 😀

        • And with that being said, here’s another discussion question:

          If you did end up with a bad choice of vehicle, such as mine, would you try to convert it to a more efficient form of fuel consumption or try to move on and find something more suitable?

          A tank’s got pretty much enough armor to withstand significant impacts and keep it’s occupants safe in a zombie apocalypse. It does however require a large support team, let’s say cheap efficient steam power is available for the turbine and all you need worry about is boiler fuel and water to keep that turbine operational. Is it then worth conversion or not? 😀

        • Are you saying that you would try to convert an Abrams tank to steam power?

          I am not intimately familiar with the mechanics of modern turbine engines; but I do think that if it were possible the US military would have already tried it. Now, it is true that steam generates an awful lot of power. There is a reason that the Russians continued to use steam locomotives well after the US mothballed them all. Honestly, though, I would leave steam for trains and ships.

          As for vehicles, I would use one to get where I am going, and be prepared to hunker down after that. If I had pasture land I would consider horses. Diesel is always nice, if you can get it. An older Volkswagen TDI would be ideal. I have read that models produced between 1996 and 2006 can operate on 100% biodiesel. If it was a Jetta wagon, you’d have more room for cargo/passengers.

    • Easy one. We’re discussing it on the forum now.