'Pretty & Putrid'
By Kitty Pandemic
ZWN special columnist
Glad you are here. I have very important information regarding your well being during the impending Apocalypse. I have good reason to believe I am the zombie industries leading expert in hobointology. As I have made the field up, there is no possible way anyone else is even remotely qualified to share this information. Still not sure what this jibber-jabber I speak of is? Hobos. I'm talking about freakin, mulligan stew loving, train hopin' hobos (also spelled hoboes. Apparently both are acceptable but I decided on the former because I like the way it looks).
First, you needn't worry if I am qualified to be such an esteemed hobointologist. I am blood related to a former Hobo queen. Swear to Romero, honest to Fulci truth. I gots me some hobo blood! And I don't mean I snuck up behind one in a dark ally, stabbed them till their corpse was lifeless and bottled their blood and stole their knapsack. I mean, part of the family. Strangely, the rest of the fam is slightly humiliated by this fact and refuses to discuss it in detail. I can't say I agree with them. In fact I believe, a hobo in the zompoc may be one of the most useful team members. Even more so than a pimp or a ho... but if a ho was also a hobo!! This may be the ultimate post-apocalyptic friend.
He has really good ideas... if you just give him a chance!
Here is a quick rundown as to why you should head down to your local train yard and get to know your traveling savior.
1. Hobos know how to travel by foot and by alternative pathways.
When things finally go bad and we find ourselves fleeing from town to town, the highways will be packed! More importantly it will be at a standstill due to the outpouring of desperate survivors from the cities. These survivors will soon be lunch... and supper, dinner and a late night snack if they can make it that long. All those panicky people will serve as a beacon to the hungry hordes. On the other hand, our friendly hobo will be following the railways, even by foot or on another heavily walked path. These people are known for being on the move and do so rather discreetly.
2. Hobos have their own badass code! Super serious, one of the coolest things I have learned about these people is their ridiculously awesome system of hieroglyphics. Their simple symbols alert them of safe areas and dangers when entering a new town.
I think this system can easily be adapted to a zombie apocalypse. In fact, if we create modifications now, we can spread the word to other survivalists. This way all the people that mocked us while we prepared can unknowingly walk into a town of brain-munchers while we hang out with hobos. Forgive and forget, right?
Obviously, there is room for improvement.
3. Hobo with a Shotgun was an awesome movie! If you haven't seen it yet, watch it! It's a hilarious unidentified time piece of goretastic goodness. Really won't help you in the apocalypse but I surely loved that hobo...
4. Already have a Post-Apocalyptic Democracy! As I have already mentioned, I have a Hobo Queen in the family but the title of queen is a bit misleading. Becoming King or Queen is not a birth right. In the hobo community, to become royalty you need only meet a few criteria and then sign up for the election. Winner is decided by a round of applause. He who claps loudest, rules them ALL!!! It's like a popularity contest amongst vagrants. The best part is once you have been chosen by your people, you receive a crown made from a coffee can. If that isn't post-apocalyptic resourcefulness, I don't know what is.
5. Hobos will do your dirty work! I'm not saying that a hobo will wipe your ass for ya but I'm also not saying that he won't. I don't imagine that toilet paper will be too plentiful. I am saying that they strive to show their value to a community by doing the work no one else wants to do. Carry out your dead? Clean the guts off your machete? Hobo got your back! Although they have no plans on settling down, they'd like to be welcomed back. So, no more fights over poop-pail doody...duty.
6. "Hobo knife fight" had to start somewhere...right? You here it ALL the time. "Lost my kidney to a hobo in a knife fight!" Or "We'll see if he can last in a hobo knife fight!" You know the sayings. People don't just say this. It is said because over and over again, a hobo was found to be with a sharp object, causing a bit of a raucous. This may or not have been with another hobo or even with a girl scout who didn't want to share her cookies. But it happened enough times so it actually became a 'thing people say.' So, I believe it is fair to assess most hobos will a) have a knife and b) apply said blade in the fiercest of ways if you do not give up those tagalongs! If they are willing to cut a 10 yr old for a cookie just imagine what they would do to a decomposing dead guy for a pair of boots.
Ready for a knife fight!
If you take anything away from this, it should be that hobos are amazing people. Hard workers who look out for each other but don't always want to fit in the mold of our modern society. They could be the one thing that keeps you from "catching the Westbound" when the world starts to crumble... much like a cookie... a delicious girl scout cookie you won in a knife fight. Trust me, I know. Remember, I'm a hobointologist. So, choose a really bad ass, post-apocalyptic hobo name and make a new friend. Did I mention they have a yearly convention? There is a parade and everything! It looks awesome. Grab your knapsack, darlings but ditch the overalls and as always, stay pretty and prepare!
Follow Kitty Pandemic on Facebook:
Follow Kitty Pandemic's blogs and book reviews at her Pretty & Putrid blogspot. Here