Sometimes I find myself engaged in pointless conversations with my husband, usually involving the always scintillating revisions to the laundry schedule or the pros and cons of purchasing a $40 window exhaust fan from Lowe’s versus spending our small appliance dollar at The Home Depot. Other times we discuss important things, like the zombie apocalypse.
More specifically, we address what our roles will be following the zombie apocalypse. if you pay close attention during these conversations you can learn a lot about what your partner of 28 years really thinks about you, for better or for worse.
While I muse about who else we might want to throw in with to create our new community or our pod, as I like to think of it, he argues that our family unit can fend for itself. Just the three of us? Is he crazy? He reasons that he will do the “hunting” and I, the “gathering”. Really? I remind him that he has never hunted anything in his life; he points out that he’s gotten pretty good at “Deer Hunter”. Oh, brother! Having survived the zombies, we will, likely starve to death.
Insulted, I guess, by my skepticism regarding his hunting prowess, he begins to rethink my role as gatherer. Perhaps he remembers that I can barely distinguish a rose bush from a hosta (one of them has flowers, right?). He suggests putting our daughter on gathering. I’m too tired to argue.
That settled, we move on to what, exactly, he thinks I will be capable of contributing to our little pod. He finally comes up with sweater maker. I guess post-apocalyptic New Jersey will be “pants optional”. I would have liked a better title, but couldn’t really come up with a fancier name for someone who makes sweaters. I tossed around knitter/crocheter for a few minutes, but found it cumbersome. Sweatermaker (I decided to make it a compound word, why not?) it is!
It seemed almost too easy. And then it occurred to me. Where was I supposed to get the wool? Why, from the sheep, of course. Yeah. That’s what I was afraid of. Never mind the logistical issue of how I would procure said sheep. He told me to imagine that sheep would be plentiful. Really? Outside of a zoo I have never heard of (and certainly have never seen) any sheep roaming around New Jersey.
So, I was to be Chief Sweatermaker in charge of livestock. It came as no surprise to discover that I would have to corral the plentiful sheep myself. And make them a paddock. Hunters, apparently, are only involved with the actual killing of the animals. Live animals being out of the hunters jurisdiction. I wondered how the kill would be transported back to the pod. I was informed that the hunter would consider that gathering. Hmm? I’ll just bet the gatherer will have something to say about that.
Is it any surprise that butchering and cooking will also fall to the sweatermaker? It seems that I will need the sinew for thread and the bones for buttons.
At this point I mentioned that it seemed that my life would be pretty much unchanged following the zombie apocalypse and that sweatermaker was, let’s be honest, just another way of saying wife. While they were out hunting and gathering, I would be home at the pod tending to a bunch of sheep and doing God knows what with sinew. That was when he told me about the ducks. Ducks? What ducks? Add feather plucking to my list of responsibilities. Obviously I had neglected to see the importance of a good feather pillow. What kind of hunting could he be expected to engage in without a decent night’s sleep?
I told him that at the first sign of the zombie apocalypse I was going to put an apple in my mouth and lay in the middle of the street. If I couldn’t draw the attention of some hungry zombies maybe I’d get lucky and be trampled by the plentiful sheep.