Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
-Mary Oliver

14 October, 2013

A brief conversation on the zombie apocalypse...

Transcribed from a conversation I had with my sister.

KATE: When Nathan and I lived in Breckinridge, he developed this whole zombie contingency plan. Like, he knew where they kept the keys for the big trucks at the rail yard, so he was going to break into the shed and get keys for a big truck, so we’d have that, and then we were going to go to Mom and Dad’s house and get them…He had this whole list of people we were going to get and a plan for the safest places to get provisions and everything.
KATE: And I though he was just, you know, crazy, but then one night I was talking to Dad on the phone and he said “So, I’ve figured out a plan for the zombie apocalypse."
ELIZABETH: No, I know! He’s filled me in on his zombie apocalypse plan! We shoot ‘em from the top of stairs. They’ll bottle neck and we can thin them out.
KATE: Really?
ELIZABETH: Yeah. The upstairs, not the basement stairs obviously. Although, that was when the gun cabinet was in our old room, so the plan may have been revised since then…
KATE: Hmm...Yeah.
ELIZABETH: But, I mean, Mom and Dad’s is still going to be one of the safest places, I think. We might eventually have to leave to find somewhere less populated, like maybe Wyoming or something.
KATE: Yeah. That’s going to be hard.
ELIZABETH: Yeah, I mean, it’s doable, but there aren’t that many places that are less populated.
KATE: No. And, I guess I’m just concerned about finding provisions.
ELIZABETH: Right. But I think that in the event of a zombie apocalypse, we may have to revert to the ways of our ancestors and grow our own food. And by our ancestors, I mean, you know…Dad.
KATE: Yeah.
ELIZABETH: You know, one time I took a “How Long Will You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse” quiz and a “How Long Would You Survive in a Horror Movie” quiz, and I survive the horror movie, but I die in the first six months of the zombie apocalypse.
KATE: Oh, weird. I wonder why that is?
ELIZABETH: Yeah, I don’t know. I suppose it’s because I refuse to leave a man behind.
KATE: Hmm, yeah.
ELIZABETH: So, you might have to find a new zombie fighting buddy. I mean, sorry…
KATE: Yeah, I guess I don’t know. Maybe with both you and Talia, it’d be okay.
ELIZABETH: Sure. And factor in Lucas.
KATE: Yeah. I’d feel good about that.
ELIZABETH: I’d even say we’re golden
KATE: He would be a great zombie apocalypse buddy.
ELIZABETH: Absolutely. The best.
KATE: Nathan would too though, but his preference is sort of hand to hand combat, which…
ELIZABETH: Not really ideal for zombies, what with the biting.
KATE: Yeah. That’s what I’m thinking. But I feel like in the heat of battle, he would probably end up biting one of the zombies and getting infected.
ELIZABETH: That is SUPER GROSS. Eww. Can you get infected by biting a zombie? I sort of thought that being bitten by a zombie was the only way to get infected. Like, a zombie has to break your skin with its teeth.
KATE: I think that you get infected if zombie matter enters your bloodstream.
ELIZABETH: Hm. Okay. I mean, I don’t know. I’ve seen a lot of people get zombie splatter on them, and they were fine…
KATE: I know, but if you bite one, then you have pieces of it in your mouth, which is a mucus membrane…
ELIZABETH: Right…I mean, yeah, maybe that’s how it works. I just don’t know. I guess we’ll have to wait until it happens to find out.
KATE: Yeah. Might take a while.
ELIZABETH: Okay, so I just feel like I should tell you that Malakai checked my heartbeat yesterday, and he said that I didn’t have one and when he felt my forehead, he said that I was cold.
KATE: Oh! Shit! So…You’re dead?
ELIZABETH: I mean, it’s not looking good for me if I’m not already.
KATE: So you’re a zombie? You’ve been a zombie this whole time?

01 February, 2013

There’s rosemary.

I met a friend for coffee a few weeks ago.  It is a coffee shop that she and I go to pretty regularly, but we hadn't been there for a few months.  I parked my car, got out, and started walking, but then stopped in my tracks as I remembered the last time I was on that street. It was with a different friend.  That is exactly where I was parked I thought. And that is exactly where we were standing when we kissed.  And, yeah, that situation ended up differently than I wish it would have, but I couldn't help smiling as the details of it rushed back to me.  The urgency, the thrill.  The taste of the beer we'd been drinking.  The chilly, fall air counter-acted by the warmth of another person's body.  The stillness of an abandoned street at one a.m.  I relished in the memory of it for a brief moment, feeling at once both slightly giddy and profoundly sad, before continuing down the street to my destination.


It was nice to find that simple place evocative.  Nice that a little, nondescript side street in Downtown Minneapolis made my heart beat differently for a second.  It made me feel a connection to these Cities in which I live and work.  It gave me ties --roots-- to this place.  After years of living here, and longing to be back in London or St. Joe or home on the prairie, they're finally not just random streets anymore. They have context and connotations now.

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Because now I can walk past a spot on the shores of Lake Calhoun and remember how my cousin and I sat there for three hours naming ducks and imagining intricate stories about their complicated, scandalous lives, vowing to return and see Gregory and Patrice's babies after they hatched.  


Or I can drive past a restaurant and remember when it was a different restaurant and my mom and dad and I would go there for breakfast all the time because they had grapefruit soda from Jamaica and the most delicious sweet potato pancakes with papaya rum compote, candied pecans, and sweetened whipped cream. 

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So, yeah, with that guy, that night held more significance for me than it did for him and instead of being closer now, we're further away and I think that's a shame.  And we didn't make it back to see Gregory and Patrice's babies until they were already grown so we didn't get to see them as downy little duckings trailing behind their mama on quiet, reflective water.  And Caribe closed, and I can't find Ting anywhere but and that one Tesco Express in Covent Garden.  But still, it's nice to have remembrances.  They sometimes leave me with a happy heart, they sometimes leave me with a heavy one.  But still.