Why Zombies Fear Tableware

As a young boy, my favorite bedtime stories featured monster-slaying heroes, especially those whose age was near my own. This reinforced my conviction that children are always their elders' superiors, a viewpoint that made me unpopular with the teachers, but noble in the eyes of my peers.

After reform school, I fell in with a band of merry men who lived in a converted B-52 fuselage on the outskirts of town. Being musicians, they recognized the importance of nurturing my talent with spoons and other percussion instruments, which is why they insisted I spend my waking hours in the galley, where instruments of that sort are kept.

The band's singer, Robin, took me under her wing, a serendipitous circumstance that kept non-serendipity from spoiling my destiny, which was slaying monsters. It also made the other band members jealous because it meant they had to share space under the other wing, but life isn't always fair. Sometimes Robin's beard would slip, prompting the others to look away and pretend to be having a conversation with someone else. I think they were afraid of her, but I wasn't.

One night there was a zombie invasion. That's where all those bedtime stories really came in handy, because I knew just what to do without being told twice, or once. Zombies are a lot like engineers in the sense that they don't devote enough time to creative activities, which is why I was able to vanquish them without resorting to slings, or arrows. Once they got the hang of the spoons, it was only a matter of time before they began inventing their own rhythm patterns and showing off for their friends, many of whom had already wandered back to their own village.

Given the proper environment, the creative mind begins to feed on itself, which isn't the optimum situation for a village of zombies. That's how I became a hero, like the Pied Piper, and Popeye. I think they were adults, but sometimes it takes a child to raze a village.


  1. As you know, I make mental footnotes as I read your work. If you had an asterisk for every "I see what you did there" moment in this piece, well ... let's just say you wouldn't run out of asterisks anytime soon.

    Love the zinger, of course. Marvelous opening, too, followed by the "After reform school" left hook (if I'm getting my boxing terminology correct).

  2. Yes, and as I recall, you once proved it by footnoting one of my most convoluted monologues. A remarkable feat (http://weblog.omegaword.com/2010/12/remarkable-feat.html), to say the least.

    Better to have one reader who "gets it" than 100 who just roll their eyes and move on the next scatological venue. So thanks!

  3. Speaking of tableware: Last night, walking toward the diner's cashier to pay for a slice of blueberry pie à la mode, I fulfilled a Retroactive Lifetime Goal. Four strangers were sitting at a booth, each with cutlery dangling precariously from his face. One of them stopped me for advice on how to make their spoons stay on their noses. I left the diner with a spring in my step, knowing that I had the countenance of someone who would know and be ready to impart vital clues about hanging utensils facially.

  4. The art of hanging utensils facially is certainly nothing to be sneezed at. It's challenging enough without adding nose gusts to the quandary.

    Congratulations on your RLG. I, apparently, have the countenance of someone who is ready to impart spare change, thus my Retroactive Lifetime Sentence is wearing a fake-nose-and-eyebrows appliance when I'm in public. Life is funny that way.