Monday, October 12, 2009

Zombie Survival Story


 The sun rose early that August morning, I prayed my 1984 Chevy half ton would start for the day. At nearly twenty five years old, the beast had a notoriously unreliable past with me. The brown rusty Chevy, covered in dings and dents, looked sad parked next to my neighbors Porsche 911 Turbo. That shiny red Porsche was always immaculate and well taken care of. My neighbor was a dentist, Randy, who was a nice enough guy except for the fact that he pretty well had a new woman over every weekend. (Not that there's anything wrong with that). Hustling to my truck I heaved the door open and began the daily rituals. I jiggled the steering column so the key would move in the column lock. Clutch engaged, I pounded the dashboard with my left fist twice to get the electrical connection restored. Sometimes it took more than three hits. As a testament to my enthusiasm, my dashboard was permanently dented in a sad, depressed way. The engine turned over reluctantly, producing coughs and sputters of blue smoke at the tail pipe. 

I looked in the rear view and caught my neighbor across the road watching me through her living room blinds. Janet Layton. That bitch tried to report me to the emissions department. And it would have worked, too, had I not video taped her fucking the mailman one day during a breezy afternoon. I sent her a still frame of the video and threatened to post it on if she opened her mouth again. I never seen her since. After two agonizing minutes of cranking the old truck finally started. I was going to trade the truck in next month for a small car, probably a Honda. I planned to do the same with my 1976 Admiral television too, but shit kinda happens and you run out of time. A notorious procrastinator, I once left a cast on my foot an extra six months because I was too Goddamn lazy to have it removed. I eventually removed it one night in a bar, after having smashed it over a head of a drunk at Silverado's saloon - a country bar in Winnipeg, Manitoba. I checked my watch as I drove down the street. 7:30 am. Shit. 

I have figured on leaving earlier, but I had forgotten to set my alarm clock yet again. I work as a computer consultant at a local oil company. A fairly easy gig, I spend my days scouring users desktops for the best porn and mp3's. I once found a video of the secretary getting busy with the president. I made a copy and stashed it on an online vault. You never know when that could come in handy. Spitz Oil Co, where I work, is a fairly good company. At around 1,000 employees, they specialize in oil and gas extraction from very deep reserves. I maintain the server farm that their engineers rely on. It's fairly routine and boring work, except for upgrades and emergencies, the day pretty well goes as planned. I run my office out of a corner storage area the size of a small boardroom. Unlike my home, I keep my office clean and immaculate. I have four 50 inch plasma displays that allow me to watch all servers continuously, and, coincidentally, 200 direct TV channels which I stole using an illegal connection from my buddy in the building maintenance department. In addition, each plasma has security panels which restrict sideways glances exactly the same way an ATM guards against people looking over your shoulder. It comes in handy when you're watching Californication and David Duchovny is busy giving the gears to a female friend. As I entered the building my co-worker Ed approached. "So how was your weekend?" he asked, arching his eyebrows. "Not as good as yours" I said, checking out the bruises on his face and neck. 

"Jesus man, what hell happened to you?" I asked, looking at a particularly nasty scratch on his arm. "What happens in Vegas..." he said, chuckling. "That's good" I said. "As long as you didn't hurt him" as I jumped out of the way of his punch. "Fucker" Ed scowled, wandering in to the server room with me. Hammering the keyboard for a few minutes, Ed swore. "What's up?" I asked, checking out the screen. There was the familiar graph of a torrent program, with a few hundred downloads paused. Apparently we had run out of disk space. I looked up at Ed. "You do realize this is our e-mail server?" pushing back in the chair, I poured a coffee. Ed jiggled the cables. "Not anymore buddy. You see on the weekend between my time with Wendy, Sarah, and Sharone, I moved our old mailserver to a virtual box. This bitch is now our torrent box!" Letters from the RIAA and MPAA were pinned to our wall, each carrying threatening legal words and strikes directly from God himself. We all laughed about it anyway, because the IT department was based out of a holding company from the Cayman Islands. According to company paperwork, I was Jose Conseco and Ed was Billy Mays. Awesome.

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