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16 January, 2012

Attack of the Suit Zombies

The Northwest is not immune to the Zombie fascination sweeping the nation. Seattle, especially, had had it's share of zombie events, and the fact that hipsters there proclaim that the craze is Over can be taken as evidence that they were at the leading edge of the phenomenon to begin with.

But to my eye, it ain't over. Like most things that replicate, it has evolved. Zombi americanus, your run-of-the-mill species, is widespread to the point that supernaturalists have all checked it off on their lists and are bored with them. Fortunately, diversification has reared its many heads, and new species are emerging. 

One of these has popped up in Olympia recently. As soon as the legislative session began, swarms of Z. politicensis were observed on the capitol campus, and milling about at coffee shops and bars. They are easily distinguished from local warm-bloods and zombies by the fact that they all wear suits, which is extremely rare here. Only the Alpha males appear very comfortable in these garments--the young staffers and interns look outright comical, dressed up in big-boy clothes--and are the only ones to fear.

The rest of the pack mostly occupy themselves clumsily rushing to hearings they cannot comprehend or, as I said, milling about, trying to look important but with such vacant eyes it is impossible to take them seriously. Loitering behavior is interpreted by some ethologists as evidence of decreased brain function, and I am not going to argue that, but there is more to it. Look at them; they are almost all male. Nobody has yet explained the gender imbalance, but we've all noticed it. Some say it is because politics, like its sporting analogs mixed martial arts and golf, is interesting only to those afflicted with testosterone poisoning.  

My theory is that all this milling about is the suit zombies' way of attempting to find a mate. Hang out long enough at the drinking establishment, and maybe a female will become enamored enough with that Armani suit to let it be removed. She is likely to be disappointed, the dangly bits being among the first to drop off after zombification. The slow brain that is a hallmark of the genus takes a while to come to terms with this, and attempted mating behavior drags on for years in some cases.

Some observers suggest that Z. politicensis has already separated into two species, but I'm reserving judgment until I see a real difference, especially since most of the splitters rely on mental inclination, which is so very limited in the genus. The Equus variety is allegedly distinct based on having a highly developed social conscience compared to Elephas, but this quality remains latent, rarely expressed in a way that would lead to conflict, much less actual domination. This may be a result of the testicular absence, but I make it a habit not to check. If anything, the Elephas tendency to want to chop off pieces of the body politic ("Teachers....unnnhhhh....Unions!" they moan, waving cleavers) seems like better evidence of differentiation.

Meanwhile, the living among us tolerate this seasonal visitation. Local businesses sell them coffee and alcohol to fuel their milling about. Soon enough, they will leave, long enough before summer that the rains will wash away their residue so we can feel clean again. It is frustrating to have the rest of the state, whenever they complain about some policy, refer to it is "Olympia's," rather than pointing at the suit zombies who live elsewhere and congregate here for a brief while, but we have thick skin and all our parts. We carry on after the carrion moves on. 

1 comment:

  1. There needs to be a third upstart zombie variety. Eohippus!