Tools of the Zombie Apocalypse

Sitting around over beers a while back, we were talking about ways that we can be evangelizing DIY, what we can do to highlight the importance of not letting these skills fade away in our society. Someone made the offhanded comment that if we don’t succeed, then when the Zombie Apocolypse comes, we’ll all be screwed. And hence, an idea was born.

What I’d like to do is put together an historical exhibit titled ‘Tools of the Zombie Apocalypse: How Makers Saved The World‘. It would feature a number of functional battle-scarred artifacts from the great zombie war, items made from the scavenged bones of a failed civilization, and would showcase the ingenuity-under-fire of a small group of geek survivors. On a more practical scale, it would underscore the importance of maintaining DIY skills in a culture that is turning its back on them.

I am currently looking into possible sources of funding, I figure we’ll need somewhere between $10,000 and $25,000, depending on how ambitious we get. But once I reach that goal, it’ll be time for our Zurvival Weekend. Over the course of three days, we will attempt to answer the follow question.

“A group of skilled and ingenious makers are trapped in a Canadian Tire at the outset of the Zombie Apocolypse. They have enough food and water for three days. Survival beyond that will depend on scavenging, rescuing other survivors, growing food, and keeping the local zombie population in check. What will they drive out of there at the end of the weekend?’

We’ll gather interested people from the Guelph community, lock ourselves away for the weekend, and build some fabulous things. Then, of course, we’ll have to battle-test them, write the narrative for each piece, and assemble the exhibit. Eventually, I envision it being a travelling exhibit, something that could go to different galleries, visit maker faires, and similar fringe festivals.

But what I’m talking about here, is the zombie apocalypse done right. In movies, books, games, whatever, everything is done wrong. Stupid risks are taken, poor weapons are selected, and above all, survivors fight instead of cooperating. No-one does it right, because there’s less drama that way. But by telling the story through the artifacts instead of through a narrative, we can have the freedom to do things right, and keep it engaging, and above all else, show how DIY ingenuity can one day save the world.

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