Welcome to the North, where we will outlive you because… Winter.

Winter in The North, in case you come from a place where all the seasons aren’t properly represented, is about five months of cold and dark. Temperatures below freezing are not uncommon. Snow covering all surfaces for weeks at a time is likely.
Because winter mostly sucks and the most common coping mechanism is to hide from it. As soon as the first weather report of the winter season comes in, everyone rushes to the supermarket to buy canned and other non-perishable goods. Stocking up on other supplies makes sense too. It’s going to be cold and crappy out for a while after the first storm so no one wants to have to leave the house for toilet paper or dog food. Continue reading “Welcome to the North, where we will outlive you because… Winter.”

Interview: The Vegan Zombie

I was excited to find out about The Vegan Zombie, a post-apocalyptic themed cooking show. Not jsut a cooking show, either – there’s a story to this baby.
While I’m not a vegetarian of vegan myself, I was for a while and I understand just how hard it is to find delicious, practical meals to make – and how much harder would that be post-zombie. It’s not just for vegetarians or vegans – all our followers who enjoy eating might find this useful. After all, ready-killed, skinned, cut and pre-packaged meat is going to be a bit thin on the ground.
For your delectation, an interview with Chris from The Vegan Zombie.

vegan zombies 2First off, tell us a little bit about The Vegan Zombie.

Well, I’m Chris, the creator and producer of The Vegan Zombie. Jon is the charismatic host of the show and Indy is the German Shepherd sidekick. Basically we do a vegan cooking show that is set in the zombie apocalypse. We prepare delicious zombie-free recipes that simple and easy to make.

What gave you the idea?

I got the idea one day while driving the back roads of upstate NY for work. I began thinking of a way I could mash up my love of the horror genre with my longtime vegan lifestyle in a cool way. That gave me the idea of The Vegan Zombie. I went home and began writing a movie script. I have always loved making videos and movies with my friends and family, especially horror. The script is a full-on zombie apocalypse story in which the infection originated through the meat and dairy that people were consuming. There is a twist at the end which will explain why we chose the name TVZ. To make a long story short, I put making the movie on the back burner and decided to start a youtube cooking series with the same concept. Jon is the lone survivor and is a little crazy. He’s always talking about zombies and making food. In some of our episodes he is fighting zombies and gets into some pretty tight situations.

How easy are the recipes to make? Could I make them while huddled around a fire in desperate fear for my life?

Yes, for the most part our recipes are really easy to make. There are some that are more labor intensive but we have something for everyone. We aim to make mostly vegan comfort foods to replicate that kind of foods that non vegans say they can’t live without. For example, we have a vegan version of cheesesteak called the No Killy Philly and we have pizza rolls and cheese sticks all vegan. We also have healthier raw foods for the health conscious folks. Yes, I said folks. Anyway, our show is for everyone. We have an non judgmental atmosphere and a lot of people make our dishes once or twice a week who aren’t even vegan.

Now for the questions we ask everyone:

What is the most likely apocalyptic scenario?

I’d say the most likely apocalypse would be of a viral origin. Kind of like 28 days later or WWZ. Something scientific that affected our brains and caused primal instinct to take over with no rational thought would be the most plausible out of the apocalyptic scenarios.

Any survival tips for our readers?

Stay away from populous areas. Aim for the head. Keep calm, you’re smarter than a zombie. Think about this, everyone associates zombies with brains. But unless someone’s head is cracked open they are most likely not gonna eat your brain. It’s too hard to get to. Your flesh and guts are what they will eat. Wear clothes that are not easy to bite through.

Are you OK with living under the benevolent dictatorship of myself or the other two ICoS ladies?

Well that all depends, I think we’d have to meet you all first before we answered that one. ūüôā

Trust me, we’re great. Now tell us anything you want about anything you want.

We are currently doing a kickstarter for our cookbook, Cook & Survive, which will be out later this fall. It is full of our all vegan recipes and it will have a graphic novel that illustrates the adventures of TVZ. You can check that out here http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/theveganzombie/the-vegan-zombie-cookbook

You can follow us on youtube, FB, twitter, IG and other social media sites.
PHEED: TheVeganZombie

 

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Should I take my pets?

I recently got kittened. My new pets spent the last two months turning my life and my house upside down. They’re wonderful little weirdos, and I love them more than I love most people. Which is why I will go out of my way to save my pets in the event of an apocalypse, while leaving you to die in the dust.
The problem is that this choice doesn‚Äôt really go along with my reputation of ‚Äėsuper-together, hard-hearted practical survivor‚Äô, so I‚Äôve been wracking my brain to think of at least semi-logical reasons for this choice. To, you know, justify it to the people who think they‚Äôre better survivalists than me because they‚Äôve genuinely shut down all their ‚Äėgive-a-shit‚Äô parts, even though that just makes them a dangerous sociopath.
So here are my totally-logical-not-based-on-loving-the-tiny-squeebles-enough-to-explode reasons to keep your pets post-apocalypse.
Oh, and I’m going to put pictures of my cats in this post. You have been warned.
Continue reading “Should I take my pets?”

Post-Apocalyptic Would You Rather

Would You Rather is a game where you’re tasked with choosing between two terrible things you don’t want. Today’s Theme: The Apocalypse!

Would You Rather is a game where you’re tasked with choosing¬†between¬†two terrible things you don’t want. It’s usually nasty things like, “seeing you parents have sex or your parents seeing you having sex.” Ew. Not a game I like playing.
So I changed it up a bit. I’m curious about what everyone thinks is a better or worse apocalyptic¬†scenario. Keep in mind, my day job is in market research so I’m kind of curious and¬†inquisitive¬†by nature AND training.

Would You Rather: Aliens or Robots?

Aliens could swoop in and just burn this place to the ground, or they could infiltrate and slowly destroy us from the inside out.

Robots, usually through some failing or hubris or man, would likely become a vital part of our societies then snap like JLo in Enough.
[poll id=”6″]

Would You Rather: City or Country?

Surviving in the City would not only mean scavenging and crumbling structures, but also pre-made everything to use or live in.
Surviving in the country would mean starting from scratch, catching or growing food, and braving the wildlife.
[poll id=”7″]

 Would You Rather: Slavery or Rebellion?

Both seem like so much work! At least with slavery you have food and shelter and consistency. On the other hand, rebels can take naps and drink and fornicate at will.
[poll id=”8″]

Would You Rather: A Dictator or Anarchy?

While I never paid much mind to government, I hear dictators make it their business to be touch the lives of all their subjects in some way. Fall in line and it could be a good way.
Anarchy could be chaotic and upsetting, or you could just slip out the back and go check out the country living. And when the bandits come to raid your homestead you’re free to shoot them and string them up as a warning to any who come after.
[poll id=”9″]

 Would You Rather: Lose everyone at once or Lose everyone over time?

It’s like pulling of a¬†band-aid, do it fast and then get over it.
Alternatively, you could utilize the skills and build relationships with people overtime.
Both would probably drive you mad. *shrugs*
[poll id=”10″]

Would You Rather: Eat People or be a Vegan?

They both have their downsides. Murder on the one hand and being Vegan on the other…
[poll id=”11″]

Would You Rather: Lose an Arm or Lose a Leg?

Things are going to fall, lasers might be fired… Which do you value the least, your arm or your leg?
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Would You Rather: Survive with your Mom or you Dad?

Yup. When you think of people the least likely to survive an apocalypse, you’re parents are probably on there. Mine are. Bare in mind that you’ll probably have to watch them die when they lose their glasses or stop and ask a bandit for directions.
[poll id=”13″]

Would You Rather: Your Co-Workers or Your Neighbors?

Honestly, I wouldn’t know my¬†neighbors¬†if the walked up and punched me in the face. They don’t look¬†especially¬†durable…
Co-workers, well, I spend eight hours a day with them and¬†certainly¬†don’t go home and miss them…
[poll id=”14″]

Would You Rather: Candy Forever or Dehydrated Fruits and Vegetables Forever?

Imagine you and your band of survivors come across a factory that you can defend and live in. Inside is a nearly unlimited supply of food… Kind of.
[poll id=”15″]

Would You Rather: Be Hunted and Loyal or Be Safe and a Traitor?

So say there’s an antagonist, be it the government, or aliens, or an oligarchy, or Amazons. This antagonist finds out that you and yours are not playing like they’d like you to be.
They offer you a choice, give up the goods and help them find the others or take a head start and try to protect your neck.
[poll id=”16″]

If you have any suggestions for other tough choices or would like to elaborate on your decisions above, talk to us via the comments below.

5 Tips for (neurotic) Survival On a Boat

Last week I spent seven days on a boat and couldn’t stop thinking about the derelict barges in Orchid. Sure I was on a cruise to Bermuda and I drank a lot of Bud Lite Limes and mudslides and pi√Īa colada, but I was ever vigilant.
I’m not sure if I’d want to spend generations on a ship. No, I’m sure, I would not want it. See in Orchid there were Rape Gangs on the barges. And¬†Cannibals. And the fun goes on. But the best part? You’re better off on the boat!
There were days where we couldn’t see land in any direction. What a frightening, tiny feeling.
Have you seen Prometheus? If no, do that and you’ll understand my unease.
Even though it was a vacation and a choice, I couldn’t help but see it as being stranded, trapped on a boat. I read the safety guides and noted the locations of life boats. And then I lost my glasses. Oh god, being on vacation and in a semi-scary location without the luxury of being able to see everything clearly is nerve wracking.

5 ways to make a week on a boat (cruise ship) easier on the mind:

1. A compass

A plain ole¬†magnetic¬†compass. the most disquieting thing about being on a cruise is that at some point you can’t see land in any direction, you have no cell signal, and you’re just trapped on a floating hotel with a bunch of drunks and¬†geriatrics.
There’s something reassuring about the basics of a compass. It can be trusted. So, if at some point you get that tiny feeling and need to remind yourself which¬†direction¬†land is in, check your standard, no nonsense, no charging necessary compass and rest assured you’ll be back on dry land some day as long as you know where to find it.

2. Extended wear contact lenses

Not worrying about where your glasses are or if your expensive¬†prescription¬†sunglasses will fall off your face will save you a lot of time and woe. If you’re worried about needing to grab your stuff and go in a hurry or bob about in the water, you might want to invest in some contacts.
Keeping in mind that a bathroom on boat, even a cruise ship, is fairly small and hard to maneuver in, it makes sense to invest in some extended wear lenses for the week of the trip.
I’m not a eye doctor/care¬†professional/ or anyone who knows the ins and out of eyeballs and vision. Check with your eye doctor and see if you can get some.
Even if you aren’t a contacts person I suggest it. I had a trial pair just for the day of my wedding and it was a great idea. I’m to chaotic to have them all the time but for one day (or one week) it worked for me.
Also, there are a lot of promotions intended for people who regularly wear contacts to wear try this brand or that and you could end up seeing clearly for free!

3. Knowing how to swim or how to admit you can’t

I’m not a strong swimmer. Actually, I’m really good at not drowning. Some might blame it on my blackness, others on my lack of coordination. Either way, I let people know. If you think I’m drowning, I very well might be, check in often. It’s okay to admit your weaknesses but more important to be able to compensate for them.
If there are life vests to be had, I find them and try them on or wear them if it’s suggested[1. Not at the beach like a tool bag].
I should just learn to swim but…

4. Bring some non-perishable food and your own water

Oh dear god the amount of food on a cruise is staggering. Upon my return I was excited to hear my stomach growling. The cruise line goes to great¬†lengths¬†to ensure the¬†highest¬†standards of food¬†preparation¬†on-board¬†the ship, but what if…
Also, what if, what if the apocalypse hits or an EMP takes out your electronics when aliens send their first wave?
Whatever the case, you’ll want to be able to have a few options for food you know you can eat and you know won’t go bad and water you know is clean and free of alien microbes/parasites/hallucinogenics.

5. Pay attention to the safety guidelines

When the titanic hit that¬†iceberg everyone ran for their lives. Well, on a ship, there’s only so far you can run until you have to try a new¬†strategy. Fortunately for you, all the right moves have been outlined and¬†diagrammed¬†with pictures and the people working on the ship are required to be more that happy to explain them to you.
Unlike in the past, when poor people didn’t deserve to live, cruise ships today must have enough life-saving bells and bobs for every single person¬†on-board¬†and they’re required to make a honest and thoughtful effort to educate you on that life-saving what-have-you.
Some people will choose not to listen because they’d rather sun bathe by the pool. That’s ¬†cool, you can die confused and sunburned while I climb into this life boat wearing my¬†safety¬†vest.

Simple Biology.

There are a lot of things that could get in our way, post apocalypse, and perhaps the most simple one is ones that post apocalypse games, literature and comics rarely cover (perhaps cause it’s gross, perhaps cause it’s dull) and it’s a fairly simple one. Our basic biological needs.
Our needs to eat, drink, shit, piss and sleep(yes, I’m going to swear in this one. Are you honestly surprised?).
We have other biological drives as well- the need for sex, being the first one I think of – but most of those can be ignored when the danger is really intense. We can’t ignore the others.
Continue reading “Simple Biology.”

Gifts for the post-apocalypse

I’m not going to comment on the sanity (or lack thereof) of the Black Friday shopping madness, and I might be a relatively new resident of the U.S., but I think it’s pretty safe to say that the holiday shopping season has begun. (Typed as I sit at my computer, switching back and forth between this document and Amazon.com’s Cyber Monday Deals Week page. See? Even my Canadian self isn’t immune to the post-American Thanksgiving shopping hype.)
What does Black Friday have to do with the apocalypse? That is, aside from possibly causing the world to collapse in on itself under the weight of a million rioting shoppers, thus causing the apocalypse? Nothing really, other than the fact that it had me wondering what gift-giving will be like in the post apocalypse.
I’ve seen a few of the gift-giving guides that pop up this time of year, and I thought to myself, “Hmm…there should be one of those for the post-apocalypse survivor!” I mean, at some point in time people are going to start celebrating birthdays, apocalypse survival holidays, the rise of the dictator days, etc. etc. It’s best to be prepared with a list of gift-giving possibilities, right?
Of course, most of these items come from apocalypse survival gear lists, but seriously, they make great gifts, too. Sure, the average survivor will probably have most of these already, but things wear out and break. Other things get lost. Other things will get stolen. So when your favorite people need replacement survival items…it’s gift-giving time! (Of course, I highly suggest stocking up on these items now, while we still have time.)
Continue reading “Gifts for the post-apocalypse”

Quick Survival Tip: Avoid Stress

English: Effects of stress on the body.
English: Effects of stress on the body. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Stress can have extremely damaging effects on the body if not properly managed or avoided. Survival situations are hard enough without adding the chaos caused by stress.
According to the American Institute of Stress (AIS) some of the more dangerous symptoms include: Difficulty concentrating, racing thoughts, Difficulty in making decisions, Feeling overloaded or overwhelmed, Feelings of loneliness or worthlessness, Overreaction to petty annoyances, Excessive defensiveness or suspiciousness, Increased anger, frustration, hostility.
If you know what causes you stress, plan for or avoid it. Some people need to feel that they are supported, in control, have something to look forward to, or just that they know what to do next.
Continue reading “Quick Survival Tip: Avoid Stress”