The Skiing Dead

Zombie Apocalypse

The Aspen Zombie Apocalypse is upon us. Staying alive depends on divining the particulars of the valley’s undead.

By Barry Smith July 1, 2013 Published in the Midsummer/Fall 2013 issue of Aspen Sojourner

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Brain-eating corpses have invaded Aspen.

Some tips for staying alive.

If you saw Brad Pitt’s World War Z, you know zombie apocalypses are no fun. Trouble is, Aspen’s already in the middle of one. It’s unclear what started the Aspen Zombie Apocalypse. Some theorize that it was due to prolonged exposure to postcard-like scenery. Others have postulated that it began with a batch of tainted sunscreen. Still others point to increased levels of soy in the water supply. Of course, crackpot theories have emerged as well.

But its origins are not our concern at the moment, as we need to focus on survival. Zombies walk among us, they’re settling in, and it doesn’t look like they plan on leaving just because off-season comes.  

There’s plenty of information available on how to survive a zombie attack, but these methods don’t take into account that Aspen Zombies behave differently than Real World Zombies. Here are some steps you can take to save yourself:

Zombies eat brains. Aspen Zombies also eat brains, but only brains that have been lightly sautéed in clarified non-GMO butter and finished with a garlic aioli drizzle and a fennel garnish. If this isn’t an accurate description of your brain, you should be OK.

Traditionally, zombies can only be destroyed by a good blow to the head. But since Aspen Zombies lead a much more active, outdoorsy lifestyle, they will most likely be wearing very stylish and expensive helmets. As a result, there is no easy way to kill them. However, they do have an aversion to coffee that costs less than $6.

Notoriously unpredictable, zombies can wander aimlessly for days before finally getting around to swarming your neighborhood. But Aspen Zombies keep more rigorous schedules. Yoga first thing in the morning, followed by a quick hike up the Ute Trail, and then off to a Pilates class. After meeting up with friends for a latte, afternoons will find them getting facials, pedicures, and/or massages. It’s really only later in the day that they get around to feasting on the flesh of the living. Once you understand their patterns, you can avoid dangerous zombie high-traffic areas.

We’ve all seen news footage of zombies ambling around making moaning sounds. Aspen Zombies do the same, but they aren’t moaning to themselves. They are talking with other Zombies on their Bluetooth earpieces. Use this knowledge to your advantage: if an Aspen Zombie is in midconversation, chances are he’ll be oblivious to you. You know, kinda like most people walking down the street talking on cell phones.

Use zombie infighting to your advantage. Make your getaway while they are arguing over whether to expand the library to include a skeletal-remains dumping ground.

Stay off the roads. Aspen Zombies are at their most dangerous while behind the wheel. Yes, Aspen Zombies drive. Duh. They also bike, white-water raft, kayak, golf, ski, and paraglide. Aspen Zombies don’t let the fact that they’re reanimated, rotting corpses hinder their conveniences or cut into their leisure time.

Should you find yourself in a situation where death by zombie is inevitable, you can at least make it as painless as possible.

It’s one thing to have your face clawed off by an aberration of nature; it’s another to have to endure the incessant barking of your attacker’s yappy zombie dog while it’s happening. Take a tip from your mail carrier and always carry zombie dog treats with you.

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