You know it’s coming. Perhaps Darwin will have the last laugh and a mutant superbug will evolve in the grease on a McDonalds grill in South Dakota. Maybe there’s some crazy Al-Qaeda splinter group working with a stolen Cold War-era Russian virus. All they have to do is slap on a label with Hanna Montana’s image and every rabid girl will gladly slather the stinking “perfume” all over everything sacred.
The question is, where do you want to be when the inevitable happens? We’re assuming places where you have a reasonable expectation of moving to, so the International Space Station, Mars, the Moon, the Marianas Trench, and my secret armored zombie-proof bunker are all out of contention.
7. Kauai, Hawaii
Why: It’s one of the least-populated islands, but it’s still close enough should you need to make supply runs to Hawaii, Oahu or Maui.
Pros: The coastal trees will supply you with fresh coconuts to drink and eat, while the Wailua River and the Pacific Ocean will provide delicious seafood. If you’re bored, take up surfing or snorkling for humuhumunukunukuapua’a. Make sure you pick up (uninfected!) beach-going hotties of your preferred sexual preference and the opposite sex (if needed) during your supply runs. Someone has to procreate enough to re-populate the planet, so you might as well fill it up with romance novel cover and Victoria Secret models, especially ones that hapen to like humuhumunukunukuapua’a.
Cons: Supply runs will always be a danger, as will non-zombies who want to contribute to your hand-selected gene pool.
6. Humble, Texas
Why: Harris County issued the most handgun licenses in the United States. Zombies are too stupid to realize what those metal things strapped to their sides are used for.
Pro: Gun ownership is pervasive and Zombies are slow. Circle around and snatch the loaded gun from their holster and shoot them in the noggin. If the zombies decide to migrate from Houston to your doorstep, Chuck Norris lives in Northwood Hills, Dallas, Texas. It’s only a four hour drive away (seven minutes if you’re Chuck Norris.)
Con: If zombies learn that they can shoot their food, you’re screwed.
5. Wyoming, United States
Why: If you’re stuck in the continental United States during the zombie outbreak, perhaps it’s best that you’re in the least populated state. Unless, of course, there’s a related zombie tumbleweed outbreak, in which case you are doomed.
Pros: It’s where the deer and the antelopes play, so wait until they’ve broken out the poker chips and blast them. Deer, antelope, elk and abandoned cattle make excellent jerky, steaks and sausage. Luckily, there’s enough of them around where you won’t go hungry. The wildlife are too skittish to hang out waiting for a moaning, reeking zombie to get next to them. For a change of pace, skip Bambi and shoot Thumper between the eyes for a nice rabbit stew.
Bonus: Hang out at the Devil’s Tower National Monument. If aliens visit, you’re first in line to get off this rock.
Cons: You’re living in Wyoming. The Internet is still delivered by Pony Express, one byte at a time. The good news is…no, wait, there is no good news, you’re STILL living in Wyoming.
4. Alligator Bayou, Louisiana
Why: Zombies can’t swim, so get yourself a nice raised house in the middle of Cajun country. The swamp will take care of most of the unwanted visitors, and the alligators will chomp on the leftovers. You can pick up an airboat too, just make sure you don’t back into zombies. Aerated zombie essence won’t make you a popular neighbor.
Pros: Stock up on mud bugs, gumbo and Zap’s Potato Chips, they’re available at the closest general store. You can shoot gators from your porch and have them on the barbeque that afternoon. If you’re particularly hungry (and not particular about what to eat), there’s always plenty of nutria around. Nutria are semi-aquatic river mammals, and some Creoles can make a tasty stew that will make you forget you’re eating enormous river rats.
Cons: You may be living next door to Bubba and his three brothers. They think books are convenient packages of kindling to start the barbeque. Hint – Never mention that you know how to squeal like a pig.
3. Dallol, Ethiopia
Why: It’s crazy hot. The average daily maximum temperature is 106°F (41.1°C for the civilized/non-USA folks). Think of it this way … lots of hot, bubbling, stinky meat slowly ambling around the countryside filled with ravenous lions, starving hyenas and stupid-looking hippos. Smorgasborg! (Why hippopotamuses? They kill far more people than lions. Hippos upset boats and bite people in half, and can charge at 30MPH — compared to a non-zombified highly caffeinated human’s 5MPH max. Hungry, hungry hippos also have a disgusting habit of shooting urine and feces at their rivals, using their tails like a propellor to get an even distribution all over their victim’s face.)
Pros: It’s a hot environment, so most of the obese refugees won’t want to hang out in a place where air conditioning is akin to magic.
Cons: It’s crazy hot, and filled with ravenous lions, starving hyenas and stupid-looking hippos. Are you paying attention? Expect your butt crack to sweat enough to impress a hippopotamus, unless you’re in an air-conditioned hut. The downside to this is you’ll have to fend off those religious folks who want to kill the sorcerer that can manipulate the air.
2. Oymyakon, Russia
Why: Oymyakon is a small village in Oymyakonsky Ulus of the Sakha Republic, Russia, located along the Indigirka River. No, I’m not making this stuff up. It’s more than cold…it’s an absolute frozen hellhole with a bar down the street, generally considered the coldest inhabited village in the world. The annual average temperature is 3°F (-16°C), and in January it plummets to an appendage-shriveling daily average temperature of -51°F (-46°C).
Pros: When January comes around, get a bunch of your comrades together for a vodka-fest. After everyone’s good and drunk, grab a stick and go out to the fields of frozen, immobile zombies to play hockey with their heads. It gives a whole new meaning to a face-off.
Bonus: If you celebrate Cinco de Mayo, those frozen zombie piñatas will still be standing in that frozen field. Just don’t eat the surprise fillings.
Cons: You’re living in a place that sounds like you’re shouting “Oy! My Achin’ski Ooloos.” Don’t worry, since everyone else is as drunk as you are, nobody will notice.
1. Arches National Park, Moab Desert, Utah
Why: It’s the best mix of all of the above. Cold winters, boiling summers, mountain lions, rattlesnakes, hot babes and dudes in Jeeps, easy handgun permits, and wide open spaces to see the zombies coming.
Pros: You can assume the religious zealots knocking on your door are zombies, even if they’re not.
Cons: If you’re a religious zealot, things will get interesting when you go door-to-door.