A disease pandemic like Coronavirus and an end-of-the-world scenario like a Zombie Apocalypse have a lot more in common than you might think. If you prepare for a zombie-caused civilizational collapse, you’ll also be in good shape to deal with COVID-19-afflicted neighbors coughing on your doorstep.
The good news is that the Coronavirus pandemic is, by all accounts, a temporary state of affairs. The elderly and people with preexisting respiratory ailments bear the majority of the risk from COVID-19. So while this pandemic bad for you if you’re old and/or having trouble breathing, the rest of us are more likely to survive infection if our attempts to prevent it fail. So take good care of Meemaw and Papaw, but remember: civilization will survive. This will burn itself out.
This is not the case with a viral Zombie Apocalypse, where the mortality rate is typically 100% for anyone exposed to the disease. In my book The Ultimate Guide to Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse I describe the three types of zombies: viral zombies, supernatural zombies, and voodoo zombies, and how one can not only defeat such creatures individually, but also handle an apocalypse scenario based on each type. For the purposes of this piece, we’ll compare the COVID-19 pandemic to a viral zombie attack, as the parallels are much closer.
If your intent is to cocoon, that is, to stay at home and ride the Coronavirus pandemic out, you have to prepare your home for an extended stay. That includes not just having enough food and water to last you at least a few weeks, but also stockpiling medical supplies like pain relievers/fever reducers, first aid products, and any prescription medications you might need. You’ll also want to bank a supply of hygiene products, including toilet paper, baby wipes (many uses for these other than wiping infant butts), and soap. If you’re concerned about looking like a wild-eyed prepper, don’t buy all your supplies at one place: spread out your purchases across several stores to draw less attention to yourself. One guy buying ten packs of Charmin and five cases of Dinty Moore beef stew at the local Safeway may seem suspicious, but the same guy buying a case here, a case there at a number of different stores doesn’t raise an eyebrow. It’s not alarmist to stockpile food at any time, for any reason. Just be smart about it.
Putting plastic sheeting and duct tape over doors, windows, and vents isn’t a bad idea, necessarily, but it may be overkill for COVID-19, which is spread through coughing, sneezing, or touching something an infected person touched, then touching your face. So it’s not an airborne contagion outside of six feet. Unless your home is literally surrounded by coughing, snot-blowing Coronavirus carriers, you can leave the drop cloths and duct tape in the garage. For now.
However, you should always deny visual access to the interior of your home as a basic security measure, just like in a Zombie Apocalypse. So if you’re cocooning, keep your doors and windows covered.
Societally speaking, the worst-case scenario with Coronavirus is an illness-caused breakdown of basic services: electricity, water, or even emergency services like police and fire departments. Have extra water on hand: at least two weeks’ worth. If you’ve got a gas grill, buy an extra propane tank so you can cook outdoors before everything goes bad in the fridge. If you’ve got a generator, buy fuel for it today. Charge your electronic devices and acquire a solar or crank-powered radio so you can monitor the airwaves when you get bored of playing Monopoly, waiting for the internet to come back. Buy extra batteries for everything, too. Invest in a chemical toilet before the water goes out and the commodes stop flushing. Don’t pour buckets of precious drinking water down the toilet, trying to get rid of the morning’s gluey beef stew-and-Saltine shits.
This is all basic survival prep stuff, and don’t let your betters in the media tell you that it’s alarmist to prepare for disaster, or even just inconvenience. COVID-19 isn’t likely to make people start looting neighborhoods under the cover of darkness, but wouldn’t it be nice to prepare your home and family in case something like that does happen? Have you taken your God-given right to defense of your person and family seriously enough to arm yourself? If not, why not?
Nobody ever said that they wished they hadn’t prepared so well. For anything. Even a Zombie Apocalypse. It’s not too late to prep, even now. You’ll feel better after you do.
Oh, and wash your hands. A lot. And tell the people you love that you love them more often. Can’t hurt.