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Bunch of people looking back at books about previous contagions and plagues, trying to figure out how best to move forward. Pffft. I look at fiction. At least the guys that write this stuff have calloused palms. Anyway, during my enforced isolation, I read the newest installment in the Black Tide Rising series, River of Night.
If you read the first part of the series (maritime-based zombie apocalypse) you fell in love with Faith. Boss Mongo’s guidance to multitudinous daughters: be like Faith. In the last couple of installments (land-based zombie apocalypse), you probably fell in love with
PFC Specialist (E4) Cathe Astroga. Here are her rules for dealing with a pandemic zombie apocalypse.
Rules for a Zombie Apocalypse
1. The Private shall never impersonate a rigger to give parachute rigging instruction to a Chief Warrant Officer rigger.
2. Even if the Warrant Officer is clueless.
3. Just “shall never impersonate a rigger.”
4. Like my father the colonel says, always take advantage of a chance to eat, sleep or pee. You never know when you’ll get the next chance.
5. The moment that you run out of sanitary products is the moment that you will most need them. Dad forgot that one.
6. When receiving a battle fatigued squad of National Guardsmen as they reenter the wire, the Private shall not suggest, “Next time, just pay the Girl Scouts for their damn cookies and they won’t beat your ass.”
7. There is no condition of HMMWV cleanliness that the Private can achieve which will satisfy Top.
8. The Private shall not describe the impossibility of cleaning unit vehicles to the Tops standards by claiming that “even waving my Hitachi Magic Wand at the problem fails to clean this Hummer!”
9. The Private shall remind junior officers that if they ask about the “why” “how,” and “where,” they lose all deniability.
10. There is not a Joint Meritorious Fraternization ribbon awarded for performing the Happy Dance of Combat Administration for Navy or Marine reservists.
11. The Private may not use her authority as a Combat Administrator to establish new awards in the forward operating area.
12. Combat Administration is not a valid Military Occupational Specialty.
13. Clipboard mounted documents are less likely to be questioned as unofficial.
15. Telling a Second Lieutenant “Sir, hush, the adults are talking” while within the hearing of the First Sergeant is not recommended.
16. That is why you encourage the dickhead Private from supply who denied your Lost Property Report to do it.
17. The use of duct tape and straight back chairs during counseling sessions is not authorized.
18. Even when the counseling is being delivered by the Command Private Major.
19. Removing two rockers and two chevrons from a Command Sergeant Major s insignia is not justification to claim status as the Command Private Major.
20. General officers in emotional shock will sign anything that the Specialist presents on a clipboard.
21. When persuading general officers to sign official documents, it is beneficial to coopt the participation of nearby senior noncommissioned officer. This is also known as “leave some meat on the bone for the Sergeants.”
22. Large formations of zombies are best viewed from inside armored vehicles.
23. The Specialist shall not attempt to make ATM withdrawals during a zombie apocalypse.
24. Working with contractors from a financial institution is insufficient authority for establishing an apocalypse-specific currency.
25. No matter how much you sweep concrete, you still get dust. Fighting zombies underground in New York City is like sweeping concrete.
26. Yelling “Get some, get some!” is not approved for engaging large bodies of enemy troops, zombies, whatever.
27. The Specialist is not allowed to rename the Vehicle Checkpoint as “Hadley s Hope,” even if it s perfectly descriptive or improves morale.
28. “Remember LV-426!” is not an authorized battle cry.
29. The Specialist shall not encourage the homicidal teenager to slap around VIPs.
30. Even if it is intensely reassuring.
31. Army regulations do not recognize the use of Kiplings “Loot” to justify post-combat resource allocation of abandoned cultural treasures
32. Broadening the allocation of post-combat resources decreases command resistance to the preservation of abandoned cultural treasures. Or you know, stuff.
33. The Specialist shall avoid the use of skyscraper elevators during combat operations, helicopter crashes and large scale building fires.
34. The Specialist shall not remind scaredy-cat bankers that jet fuel does in fact melt steel I-beams when we are standing inside a New York City burning building.
35. Ass slaps to encourage the cuter dudes still count as sexual harassment.
36. Even in combat.
37. Little black cocktail dresses are also not approved for combat operations.
38. While in combat, the Specialist shall not criticize the driving skills of the scary, secret SOCOM old guy.
39. The Specialist shall not try to cleverly guess at the career path of the clearly former Delta shooter who is only a civilian now.
40. Because he carries a lot of guns.
41. Getting shot on your armor hurts. It hurts less than getting shot not on your armor.
42. Knee strikes to the head and torso are not approved methods for adjusting the position of restrained prisoners-in-custody when officers are within line-of-sight.
43. Tasers may not be used to preemptively enforce internal team discipline and morale.
44. When dictators take over after the end of the world it is better to be on their side, and armed, than not.
45. Pick good dictators.
46. The Specialist shall not refer to rescued middleschool students as Organ Donors, Involuntary, Single-Use, Do Not Rough Handle When Frozen, One Each.
47. The Specialist shall not instruct members of the Global E-4 Apocalypse Mafia in the Dark Arts of distracting officers and more senior noncommissioned officers in order to avoid onerous additional duty.
48. The Specialist may not hold unauthorized swearing-in ceremonies for the Global E-4 Apocalypse Militia.
49. Particularly for inductees under the age of consent.
50. Bayonet kills on zombies are not “just the way grandma used to make kebobs.”
51. It is decreed that “Dragula” by Rob Zombie is the “Universal Anti-Zombie Anthem of the E-4 Mafia.”
52. Unless replaced with “Bodies” by Drowning Pool. Or “Down With The Sickness” by Disturbed.
53. During target identification training for volunteers and irregular forces, the Specialist shall not label running targets as zombies and standing targets as well-disciplined zombies.
54. Even if she’s a huge Warren Zevon fan, the Specialist shall not refer to any junior officer as “an excitable boy.”
55. The queen of the E-4 Mafia may not unilaterally change the age of consent in the state of Tennessee to seventeen, despite the clear absence of controlling legal authority.
56. The Specialist shall not perform preventative maintenance function testing of Tasers on friendly targets.
57. Taunting the soon to be dead is not encouraged immediately prior to application of high speed sleeping pills.
58. Officers will always misread the map and should rely on E-4 navigational expertise.
59. The Specialist shall refrain from giving the officer in charge navigational corrections unless directed by the NCOIC then present.
60. Any instances where the Specialist s navigation is incorrect shall immediately be attributed to erroneous officer input.
61. Using a disarticulated skull as a ventriloquist’s dummy to imitate the NCOIC is not approved.
62. The Specialist may not use said skull to conduct partner training for Immediate Action Drills.
63. The Specialist shall not hit on the commanding officer’s girlfriend.
64. Especially if she seems kinda into it.
65. Illicit corpse management is not authorized.
66. The Specialist is always designated to carry the heavy end of the body. Upon promotion to Sergeant, transport of the light end of the body is authorized.
67. Apparently, the shooting of officers is authorized, as long as they are the right officers.
68. The development of woman-portable lightning guns is a priority for the apocalypse R&D department.