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Definitively Undead

February 4, 2016

Regular readers have probably been wondering...anticipating or perhaps dreading the first HCSWT zombie column of the New Year. For irregular readers, you’ll be happy to know that zombie apocalypse based articles are a standard, trademark tradition here. Or maybe you won’t be happy, and think, “How silly! I shan’t read this column again!” Then you’ll tear up the paper, tell your friends about the silliness you have discovered, write a nasty letter to the editor and hire a hit man to get me. Oh well, you wouldn’t be the first, won’t be the last, so­­——meh.

Anywho... let’s open the years fun filled guide to reanimated flesh eating corpses with a little lesson in basic zombie vocabulary and the various names given to the walking dead. Some of these will be referenced in later “zombie related” articles, so take notes or just save this page.

Abominations, Ankle Biters- (zombies that do not have legs or otherwise cannot walk);

Beaters- (zombies that pound relentlessly and endlessly on a structure occupied by the living); Biters- (zombies that bite a lot more than standard zombies); Cannibal Corpses, Crawlers- (another name for Ankle Biters); Creepy Crawlies- (like crawlers but creepy); Dead Beats- (zombies who died unemployed); Dead Heads- (not to be confused with Grateful Dead fans); Draggers- (yet another name for Ankle Biters or male zombies in women’s lingerie); Fine Young Cannibals- (fresh zombies that have maintained an attractive physical appearance, also a British band); Geeks, Ghouls, Grabbers- (zombies trapped inside abandoned cars that are still dangerous because they can reach out of the windows and grab you...duh); Handi-Corpses- (people who died while in a wheelchair. If they’re uphill from you- watch out!); Infected- (broad term for zombie, although technically, it refers specifically to living people transformed by a virus); Joggers- (not undead people who aren’t fit enough to run but like to put in more effort than those who just walk); Lame Brains, Living Dead, Lurker- (zombies that hide and wait for a victim); Meat Bags- (the literal imagery of that is pretty gross); Monsters, Noob- (any newly infected zombie); Necrotics, Risen- (see also resurrection and bread); Roamers- (zombies who like to travel); Rotters- (rotten zombies); Runners- (another name for Infected or perhaps deceased fitness buffs); Saifu- (the Japanese name for driver ants, used by analogy; sort of like calling them “swarmers”); Shufflers- (zombies that are too lazy to pick up their feet); Slackjaws- (will usually be shufflers, too); Soulless Corpses- (my ex-wives?); Stiffs- (zombies who originally died in an excited state); Stragglers- (zombies that just can’t keep up); Swimmers- (a bloated and waterlogged zombie); Undead, Walkers- (metal frames used by the elderly for support, oh and standard zombies); Walking Dead- (million dollar franchise that places all its chips on a redneck with a crossbow); Wanderers- (zombies that like to roam around. Never in one place, they roam from town to town) and Zombie Strippers- (hot, naked dead chicks that will eat you).

The synonym terminology created by books, films and television over the years is a vast wasteland of words. Most of these stray further and further from their point of origin.

zom·bie -?zämb?/ (noun) 1. A corpse said to be revived by witchcraft, especially in certain African and Caribbean religions and used to carry out the wishes of its token master. Though this is the original definition and defines the proper use of the word, most people view the concept of “zombies” by the secondary definition— 2. (In popular fiction) a person or reanimated corpse that has been turned into a creature capable of movement but not of rational thought, which feeds on human flesh. This is due in a large part to the mainstreaming of the zombie culture in the modern entertainment industry. Additionally, a horde of infectious flesh eaters is far more entertaining than one mindless corpse wandering around. “Oh no! The zombie is going to get us...just that one!”

So which is the true definition of zombies? Well, despite this writer’s anal-retentive nature when it comes to proper word usage, we’ll go with definition no. 2. After all, this is an entertainment paper and we have to keep up with the industry. And besides, I don’t think I could write more than one full column based on the exploits and dangers of just one zombie.

Tune in next week for...not zombies! Perhaps a nice little tribute to St. Valentine’s Day and true love or what to do if your Valentine is bitten by a zombie! Either way it’s romantic.

I welcome almost all questions and comments via FOCUS, or email me at or you can FRIEND me on Facebook under Saw’s Brood!

Hope to hear from ya, until then try and stay focused. See ya!




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