Posted in Monday Mayhem

Plan B

The other day I was at the station waiting for the train into the city. As I was sitting on the bench, a thought ran through my mind and I haven’t been able to shake it. What if a zombie appeared and began attacking those waiting on the platform? What would I do? Where would I go? After all, I don’t think about these things every Monday Mayhem. Wait. Maybe I do.

What is your Plan B?
What is your Plan B?

Then I remembered a scene out of the movie The Bourne Identity where the main character Jason Bourne (Matt Damon) is sitting in a restaurant and while he’s talking with someone, he is scanning his surroundings. He is accessing the people, the objects at his disposal and formulating an exit strategy—all within a matter of seconds.

It got me thinking. If there ever were a zombie attack, would I be ready?

Subsequent to thinking about this, I began a little exercise to see if I could actually accomplish doing what Bourne did, which was to assess my environment, catalog people and objects, and plan a quick exit.

Believe me—the exercise is much harder than it sounds.

The first time I did it, I failed miserably. I couldn’t keep track of the comings and goings of people because too many things changed within a minute, and I didn’t realize the amount of things I had to take into account to remember. Then again, it didn’t help that I tried this walking through a department store.

My next attempt was in a much more controlled environment. I’d chosen our town’s library. This time around, I did a bit better. I was able to memorize the exits, track people’s movements and keep a running tally of objects I could use in case of a zombie attack. I actually saw a letter opener on someone’s desk behind checkout that would come in handy for such an occasion.

A donut shop became my next assignment. I was feeling like a secret agent already!

As soon as I walked in, I committed the exits to memory. As opposed to remembering those working behind the counter, I counted them. Uniforms are far easier to remember than plain clothes. I also took separate counts of people standing up, such as waiting in line, and those sitting at the booths. As one would get up from their table, I subtracted one from those sitting at the booths and added it to those standing up. Obviously, I couldn’t stare at the people my whole time, so I looked for reflections where I could, using those as prompts for maintaining the count.

The other thing I found I was doing was that unlike the library exercise, where I was looking for specific weapons (eg. scissors, rulers, pencils, etc.), I now simply took an inventory of items on the counter and around the shop. This allowed me the freedom to know what my inventory would be in case the zombies came at me from all directions.

I know. I’m weird. But I had fun doing it in spite of the fact I had to commit so much to memory. One thing’s for sure—Plan B has become more real to me should a zombie attack actually take place.


Have you thought about inventorying your surroundings? What is your Plan B?


Jack Flacco is an author and the founder of Looking to God Ministries, an organization dedicated to spreading the Word of God through outreach programs, literature and preaching.

15 thoughts on “Plan B

  1. This sounds like fun. I know I’d get much more into it than I should though and forget that I shouldn’t be staring or working out how to vault a table to get to the mop handle I could use as a weapon. Great idea though.

  2. I have to say that I have never, ever planned an escape route. My thought processes tend to be slow and by the time I figured something out, some zombie would be munching on my brains.

  3. I’d be prepared. How small do they make flame – throwers, & is it legal to carry them in public ?

    I could improvise if I was near a propane supply place ! Taste the HEAT !

  4. Oh, good, someone who knows about zombies. Maybe you could give some suggestions to what happens to Fred and his uncle. They’re currently staking out in Costco.

  5. Would it not be easier to just buy a shack in the middle of Saskatchewan and move there. I can picture the scene, when the cops come up to you in the bread shop and ask why you’re standing there gazing at the surroundings. ‘I’m calculating what I’d do in the event of a zombie attack, officer…’

    On a serious note, when I go out on site carrying out surveys I am always looking around for where a threat might come from and where an escape route is possible. It’s a sad indictement of our times that to people working outdoors there are real threats that can move a bit quicker than a zombie.


    1. A shack in the middle of Saskatchewan sounds like a place I’d appreciate to live in. I just can’t see myself waiting for a strawberry frappuccino while the police comb the area questioning me why I’m casing the area.

  6. I’ve had friends that do this sort of thing everyday. They always assess their environment, never sit with their backs to an entrance or where anyone can sneak up behind them, etc. I used to call them paranoid in jest, but it is a good practice on some levels.

  7. Its funny – my wife and I sometimes do this. As an aside, Jack, we’re watching The Strain right now. Its a 13-episode series. A 2nd series is coming. Its about vampires, but more the Necroscope kind than the classic ones, or these new sparkly ones. You should try to find it. I think you’ll enjoy it. It bothers the wife much more than Walking Dead does.

      1. Guillermo del Toro is one of its creators. He had the initial idea, and then a writer named Chuck Hogan turned it into a trilogy of novels. We’re on episode 10 of 13 so far, and I’m pretty impressed with it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.