The Zombie Epidemic is Here

zombie epidemic

Typically when we’re talking about zombies we imagine decomposing human bodies fumbling around and chasing anything with a heartbeat, preferably normal human beings who still have a pulse.

As frightening/exciting as that idea may be (a lot of us imagine life like Zombieland), I feel like there is a new type of zombie. The worst part of it, they’re already here. The zombie epidemic is right here right now.

What do I mean?

For as much as I am online on my laptop, my close friends know that I try to steer away from a lot of technology.

I don’t own a television, I don’t own a “smart” phone, my car doesn’t have automatic windows or locks, I don’t have a tablet, I don’t have a Garmin or TomTom or anything like that.

My old “dumb” phone at the moment has a broken touch screen, randomly turns off and is literally taped together with packaging tape. (duct tape didn’t last as long in regards to keeping a phone together, I tried) It’s been falling apart for a couple of years.

What does this have to do with the Zombie Epidemic?

Technology is spearheading the epidemic itself.

I’ve been wanting to write this post/rant for a while now and finally, I was sent over the edge a few days ago.

What is a zombie today?

Next time you step out of your house, take a look around you and notice what people are doing.

At least in America, a large portion of the population are with their heads down, trudging along staring at a screen of some sort. These are zombies.

The human race has succumbed to the digital era.

Have you ever watched the movie, Surrogates?

You should check it out. It takes place in the future and in this future we have created pseudo bodies that we control from the comfort of our own home. Nobody leaves the house, our surrogate self leaves for us. We stay plugged in at home and can feel and do practically whatever through our surrogate. Our electronic self is a facade for who we wish we were.

That idea of what the future can be doesn’t seem too farfetched to me.

I was having a conversation with a friend of mine recently. He asked me why I want to leave on my permanent backpacking trip so badly.

I told him that I’ve been back in the states for going on a year since my backpacking trip last summer and not once have I been as happy as I was then. The reason being is that people in Central America were still living.

They still interacted with each other and socialized without smartphones. I could meet new people and spend a day out doing things without watching anybody become infatuated with technology.

Also, whenever somebody did bring out their phone they would actually dial a number and call. I don’t know if Americans know that or not, but you can actually use a phone to make a call and have a spoken conversation. Crazy right? You don’t have to be limited by txting and trying to convey your information and tone across through typed out words! It’s pretty incredible, you should try it.

I came back from hanging out in Central America and some friends noticed that I wasn’t the happy go lucky guy I once was. I was asked several times why I was so irritated.

I wanted to catch up with friends and it was for the most part the same.

We we would meet up for lunch/dinner/beer/whatever. Not five minutes in, and out would come the smartphones.

It pissed me off. Social gatherings were no longer social gatherings. They became discussions on videos, celebrity news or funny quips a friend posted online.

Everybody around me was/is turning into a zombie.

That had been happening though. I had realized that before the trip. I’m not even going to lie, I would feed into it. I wasn’t busting out my phone (I can’t) but I would talk about it and watch the videos. blah blah blah

Part of it always bothered me though.

Things started getting worse. The more interconnected we’re becoming, the easier it is to just say no or not do anything.

I don’t know how many times I’ve been stood up last minute. This goes beyond the dating scene, I mean in general. I’ll be somewhere waiting only to be sent a txt 10 min later saying, “Sorry, can’t make it”.

Better yet, I’ve had people just not respond at all.

It’s easy to avoid people and social settings. We can just not do something. No biggie though, send a quick txt saying sorry.

This actually relates to what pushed me over the edge a few days ago.

We have some new neighbors. They moved in next door, probably around late last summer or so.

They seemed nice enough. They were productive fixing up the house and the yard. It seemed like they would be good neighbors.

Last week I pulled up to my house to see the guy next door and his buddy pointing at our trees, more specifically some low hanging branches. (I acknowledge they are hanging low and partially over their side)

I stepped out and looked at them, knowing exactly what they were talking about. I made eye contact and said “hi” waiting for a friendly conversation to ensue discussing the branches and when we would be able to get the tree trimmed.

With a dismissive “hey” they turned away from me and kept pointing and murmuring to themselves. This was a bit irritating.

A couple of days later a police officer comes knocking at the door, “Excuse me, there has been a complaint from one of your neighbors about the low hanging branches and some weeds that are in your yard. I’m afraid I have to issue you a warning.”

When the officer pointed out the same branches that the neighbors were pointing out it was obvious.

I was pissed. Our new neighbors filed a complaint when all they had to do was either mention it to me when I saw them the other day or walk a whopping 50 ft from their door to ours and have a discussion.

I realize this isn’t technology related, but it seemed all to familiar to how a lot of people are operating today.

It’s like technology has made us all a bunch of pussies.

(I’m sorry if that offended you, comment below or tweet me, we can cyber fight and act hard ;) )

Back to the digital zombie epidemic.

What the heck is going on?

What happened to the time we could hang out with some friends and simply enjoy each others’ company and personalities? We felt like friends and people that meant something in the lives of others. We weren’t left to sit there and wait as somebody finished sending a message.

What happened to the time when people would go outside and actually notice that there were clouds in the sky and a sun shining? Now everybody gets their neck sunburned while keeping a pale face as they stare down at a little device that we treat as a physical extension of ourselves.

What happened to the time when we fully committed to a time and place and actually developed real life interpersonal skills? I’ve had people answer the phone just to say to txt them instead because it’s easier, even though they had nothing going on. I have had great communication with people online only to have awkward meet-ups in person. (social dynamics is an entire other post I could rant about)

We all are already or are slowly turning into zombies.

Check out this scene from the movie Warm Bodies that came out recently. Start it at around 1:30 and watch up to 2:00, it’s a bit exaggerated, but it is exactly what I’m talking about.

 

Now I’m not trying to act holier than thou, I’m just trying to acknowledge what’s going on and hoping I can make a change. I entertain the lifestyle here and there. I’ve been txting somebody while with a group of friends and have asked their thoughts and opinions on the matter.

I want to stop that. I don’t want the disease to spread and more fully engulf me.

I invite you to join me.

Next time you go to socialize with some friends, turn your phone off while you’re hanging out. Enjoy the company of the friends you keep. Value what you physically have right in front of you.

Actually, the first time you try it, don’t tell anybody. See if you’re hanging out with zombies. Notice what goes on when you unplug for a while and spend time in the “real” world.

Let me know what happens or what you think about this zombie epidemic in the comments below.

 

 

Comments

  1. Elisabete says

    You’ve hit the nail on the head Pablo. In fact, what’s happening is that people’s brains are becoming damaged by too much technology, especially the kind that is held closest to the head. In short, they are gradually becoming insane! The zombie effect, as you describe it, marks the first stages of this degeneration (It’s one of the stages of psychosis). Eventually, it will lead to paranoia, emotional instability – so that you can no longer trust people, or their judgement (imagine how this will affect businesses). Neighbours begin to turn on each other for the most ridiculous things (such as the fact that you have not mown your lawn etc). These are all the beginning stages of this paranoia and inability to make sound judgments. I know it sounds far fetched, but it is actually like a creeping sickness, and unless things change, and people no longer have access to so much of this kind of more-or-less useless technology that they are addicted to, the worse you will find it gets. There may come a time when a neighbour doesn’t just call the police about the little dandelion head in your yard, but will just shoot you instead. The human brain is not able to deal with such a high level of EMR (electro magnetic radiation) or wireless, and still function properly after a few years, and certainly not over a period of generations. You don’t have to be a scientist to figure this one out either, it’s just common sense – a survival sense that most of us have, but few listen to. You’re one of the few people who is listening, and you can see that something is not right. In the American culture diet is also causing serious damage to people’s health, which, as some people don”t seem to realize, also affects the brain, since the brain actually needs LOTS of nutrients in order to work properly. SO, combine these nasty ingredients, and you are indeed looking at a people who are seriously on a path of self destruction, as well as the destruction of future generations, whether they become sterile or not (you’ll find sterility is becoming quite common too).
    The USA is the worst country affected by this “zombie” effect you are speaking of, because it is the nation most obsessed with addictive, useless technology. It is a culture focused on cars. You have to drive just about everywhere, and there is nowhere to just sit and chat outside, in the sun, for the most part. Everything is set up to force you to drive, and keep moving along. I am European, and in most European nations, people walk around towns and cities. They sit in beautiful parks. They enjoy each others company outdoors, not just in cafes or restaurants. People need to be outside in nature as much as possible in order to remain emotionally stable and healthy. In the US, since there are so few places to just hang out in, outside, most youth, and people of all ages, just stay indoors, watch T.V, play on their computer, etc, etc. And the more you sit around indoors, the more likely you are to eat snacks, and junk food. You get bored and depressed.
    I see a serious problem in this country, and it’s grown worse in the past 14 years, very rapidly. I came to the USA in the late 90’s, and it was nowhere near like it is today. Fortunately, I’m planning to move back to Europe soon, with my husband (who is American, and who also thinks as you do) and our dogs. The Zombie sickness is spreading to some EU countries too, but it’s moving slower, as Europeans tend to be more resistant (their saving grace is actually their attachment to culture and customs, something which the USA has less of) – at least in some countries. I suspect that some of this dumbing down of the masses is being done deliberately, to make people less compassionate, to turn them more into willing slaves. Remember that machines are “cold” and mechanical. Well, the more time you spend around mechanical things, without much of a break, the more you might just become like one. Recently, as I spoke to a friend from New Zealand, living in MN, with her husband, I was amazed to hear that in MN, or perhaps just that town, I don’t know, pet cats are no longer allowed to roam about outside of their own yard. Why? well because of this strange, irrational madness that seems to be turning neighbour against neighbour, making people complain about the most insane things. There are also laws in effect that can prevent you from growing vegetables in your garden and attempting to become self-sufficient. Some areas have had neighbours complain about someone growing anything other than a closely cropped, clnically perfect lawn. AND, what’s worse is that the authorities are more than willing to oblige such strange, nasty human beings, who want to steal the happiness and freedom of others. One lady who had spent a long time creating a wonderful vegetable garden, had it all destroyed by the local authorities just because the neighbours wanted her to be a mono-human, a zombie just like them, with a neatly trimmed, boring yard!. How dare you be different and stand out from the crowd? If you do, you will be treated as a criminal. So, is it all by accident, or is there a deliberate agenda being planned and played out? Am I a conspiracy theorist?, well, let’s just say that anything is possible in this world, more than the average person will ever dare to think about or accept (because the average thinking person, is actually ruled by fear). The only thing you can do in the face of this spreading insanity, is to remain true to yourself. Keep you values, your ethics, and do not let yourself become lost in the jungle of illusions and distractions that the majority are definitely being changed by. In fact, it’s almost becoming like a case of the “Body Snatchers.” This is not impossible either. In the end however, it’s all about the choices people make in their everyday lives. You, have been strong and insightful enough to do what YOU want to do, and not blindly follow the mindless herd, ready to jump over the cliff. Believe it or not, there are others like you, who dare to be individuals, in a world increasingly full of zombies. Hang in there Pablo, hold onto your so-called ‘old-fashioned’ values. They are based on higher truth, and without them, we will not survive.
    Thank you for sharing your wise observations. It gives the rest of us hope that we are not alone.

    Blessings,
    Liz

  2. says

    Hey Liz!

    Apologies that it’s taken me so long to respond. Wanted to wait til I had some time for a more thought out response. I really do appreciate the comment you left.

    Funny you mention becoming sterile due to health and electronics. I came across a study a while back that covered the correlation between the sperm count in men and amount of time men carry cell phones in their front pockets. Also I remember reading recently (forget where) about how the count is much less today for men in comparison to their granfather’s. It attributed it to the types of awful food and lack of nutrients we consume. It’s led me towards changing up some of my own habits. Still have a long way to go for sure. haha

    It’s frightening to hear about the restrictions when it comes to pets and limits of what we can grow. It reminds me of that Dr. Suess movie The Lorax (never read the book). What your talking about seems like it would head towards how the town is in that movie. Hopefully, as a collective, we start coming to realizations and progress towards a healthier future.

    I find myself more and more irritated the longer I am here in the U.S. with the way things are. Headed to Panama shortly, hoping to establish some type of home base in a Latin American country where I can more comfortably create a life that I enjoy. Keep things simple and enjoyable, slow down and get away from the hustle and bustle of things.

    Thank you again for your comment! Glad I’m not alone. : )

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