The best rendition of the state of the world and its solutions available so far is the brilliant documentary Thrive. At a time when it has become a battle to access pure drinking water, organic food, basic housing, jobs, and energy, this film packages reams of research into a balanced narration that anyone can understand.
Breaking News: Zombies have been seen using big-box stores to meet. The implications are grave, with possible strategy sessions for infiltration and takeover occurring during these Z meetups. This article breaks down an analysis of what’s happening and makes recommendations for nipping further outbreak in the bud.
The scene: Milling about somewhat aimlessly, several shoppers were observed recently in Wal-Mart displaying behavior indicative of infection with the zombie virus. Symptoms observed included leaning on shopping carts to displace normal (and sometimes abnormal) body weight, trudging as if in trance, staring into space, and eating while in the store, thereby spending half a day inside. Glaring fluorescent lights gave many the appearance of under-eye bags and slightly gangrenous limbs.
The issue at hand for discussion is how contagious the disease is, and whether or not the zombies’ use of big-box stores will spread the virus or could perhaps contain it, as the types of people who shop at Wal-Mart may be of a similar demographic.
Sourcing demographic information for Wal-Mart might be as easy as making several trips there and extrapolating the data collected to stores nation-wide. Several photographers have already begun documenting certain regular appearances of what seems to be a specific and unified population visiting Wal-Marts across the country. The typical behavior of those infected seems to include habits similar to those detailed in the article documenting Black Friday earlier in this blog. Shuffling, slumping posture, empty gaze; lack of eye-contact, missing consideration for others present, surrender to store conditions and situational dangers associated with the general shopping frenzy, etc.
Stores like Wal-Mart are possibly a kind of breeding ground for the zombie virus. They may be, however, places where these creatures are actually being contained to some degree, cut off from portions of the population less susceptible to consumer culture/adverting. They do leave the stores to sleep at home, though, and this commute may expose others to the disease. It is unlikely that many shoppers of Wal-Mart use public transportation to get to and from the store, so the car (or personal transport pod) shields people from direct contact. Family members can be considered exposed and infected for the most part. Neighbors most-likely are either safe from transmission for the time being, as modern suburban and urban design leaves out public gathering spaces or pleasant walking routes to and from homes.
Keeping up with the Joneses as a sort of way of life in America has implications for cross-pollination, much of the supplies used for growing a greener, more uniform “monolawn” coming from big-box stores, where zombies no doubt at least make visual contact with one another and susceptible parties some of the time. Observation does impact choice. Store culture, malls and big-boxes in particular, establish mores for dressing (to hide the unique soul and any human vulnerabilities), behavior, and lifestyle choice. Elements of this ‘culture’ include product tastings, interactive displays, food courts, and sales.
Recognition among shoppers occurs via products stacked on carts for purchase, attendance at sales ‘events,’ and the clothing worn by participants. Even if shoppers do not interact verbally, they are visually reassured by each other of their normalcy (fitting into American standards) and subtly encouraged to spend even by their level of purchasing power in comparison with each other.
The virus may therefore be being transferred in stores like Wal-Mart and Costco via a subtle strand which links sensory hubs without requiring any physical contact between people. Disease transference by proximity without touch frustrates the standard triage and patient zero medical containment approach. Without an understanding of how to prevent the subtle yet pervasive suite of disease transfer avenues at play in shopping centers and big box stores, containment and protection turns difficult. Touch made unnecessary and replaced by visual prompting then supported by a competition-based set-up (get the new deal before your neighbor does) makes elusive the hero’s approach. Being aware of the elements of transference of this disease is usually not sufficient to make any difference. It is like a child throwing a pebble in a pond already bombarded by rocks tossed by a group of adults, the ripple is not enough to effect a change in the wave pattern.
Additional obstacles include sound controlled inside the stores to cue passivity, dullness of mind, and consumption, including probable subliminal advertising tracks under the musak. Developing and maintaining a strong mind and healthy sensory reception template as an individual is not so difficult, especially if one starts out in a less susceptible place within, such as with basic progressive consciousness or little time spent inside these kinds of stores. However, even talking with the infected in these places becomes ineffectual because the hero and the infected are both surrounded by multiple streams of sensory interference. One might be able to maintain independence from the virus while the other remains unable to make a mental bridge to lead them out of the inundation and system domination occurring in effect via their lack of appropriate protections against the stimuli all around them in the big box or the mall.
The issue of zombification affects more than might originally be obvious, such as what people wear or think. One major area of importance remains the nation’s food supply. Those who shop at big-box stores make up a large portion of the mainstream population and therefore determine supply within the heavily-controlled boundaries of what the stores offer up for purchase. Perhaps reports on factory-farmed beef sales are weighted by contracts between big-box stores and those producers, the infected being largely unquestioning of the back story of the food on display, by way of their disease. In this way, these kinds of stores make perfect breeding grounds, petrie dishes for zombie ‘culture’ to grow like a silent fungal colonial takeover. Meanwhile, the animals in factory farms suffer unspeakably and zombies gobble it up like fresh brains.
Without comment or improvement (more human and humane considerations), the pseudo-places commonly referred to as malls and shopping outlets are projected to remain hot breeding grounds for the zombie virus. The method for infection is largely unrecognized, and therefore unchecked, and infection is thus spreading steadily in the ways postulated above.
The actions one could take in prevention of further spreading of the disease include a general list of basic activism. Letter-writing to Congress, the Senate, and the big-boxes, regular use of the technique of visualization of a much more sane store structure and relationship with suppliers, including accountability for inhumane treatment of food animals and corporate pollution generated by production facilities as well as consideration for local and organic growers, is one major avenue of containment of this plague. It is easy also to boycott, as if one thinks about it, none of the things sold at them are that necessary. The lower prices are not actually low at all, when one stops to account for the loss of life, ecosystem integrity, indigenous communities, and small farms that are just some of the parts of the equation not shown on typical accounting sheets. Shopping instead at local cooperatives, buying directly from local farms, and visiting farmers’ markets are easy and fun ways to change the tide. Another action with concrete results is to create or join a community discussion/action group, one in which members write letters to the editor of local and national newspapers and create artwork to expose and encourage discussion about what is happening inside big-box stores.
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