Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Get Your Grub On.

This post isn't about roasting marshmallows, Skippy.
If you find some marshmallows during or after the Z.A., roasting the stale suckers will make them taste better, though. I think we all know how to to this one: poke stick into marshmallow, stick in fire, wait until black, eat, and then drink enough water to cool the tongue burn. Am I right?

One thing I hate about Z.A. movies is that everyone runs out of food. 
They're eating crap scrounged from stores - seriously, if we're pissed off as a general rule about the crap in our food now, what's going to happen after the Z.A.? We can't go bitching to any government about GM food - because we won't be able to tell the crap apart. Pollen from GM crops has been a problem discussed by scientists since 1999...when the zombies eat all of the scientists the problem isn't going to go away.
Hopefully the GM strains will die out, but if not, I think that it will be more important to know the difference between grapes and nightshade then a GM tomato and an heirloom.

The point is, food is food. 
We all need to know how to identify what's good to eat and what isn't. I love the Wildman Steve Brill and his website, while not the prettiest, has a vast amount of information anyone can use. He has several books that I strongly urge anyone that wants to eat well after the Z.A. to buy. This link takes you to his Plant ID Page :

Do NOT eat anything that you are not 100% sure of.
 There are plants out there that can kill you faster than a zombie can and just as painfully. Doubtful? Take a look at the symptoms and reactions on this page of common poisonous plants:

I can't say this enough. Do not go sticking shit in your mouth if you don't know what it is. It might not kill you outright, but a massive case of the trots will make you wish you'd listened. Trust me. I'm an author.

After checking out those pages, you have an idea of what you can and can't eat. You're probably wondering, "Yeah, but how do I cook it?" --over the fire you learned how to build last lesson. Or beside it. Or even in it.

If you have the room to carry it, a mess kit comes in really handy. 
Every person in your group should have one. You can buy a mess kit or build your own. Military mess kits are the best for their durability and compact size. Don't spend too much - anything you have can be lost during the Z.A. and if you have any sense, you won't go fighting through a horde to grab the expensive mess kit you (or some idiot) left behind.

Want to be really self reliant? 
Make your own mess kit from cans. A coffee can with a plastic lid can carry your entire kit, boil water, cook stew, and more. When choosing cans don't use any that have the white lining inside, this can burn off or leech into your food. A plain metal clotheshanger can be bent into a handle for your cans. Punch a hole near the top of each can so you can hook the ends of the hanger in. With cans you can choose the size of your kit. Cans are also readily available in most areas which means that if you lose a kit, it's easy to replace on the fly.

Coil a few wire hangers inside of your kit for flexibility while cooking.
 The hangers are good not only for cooking, but even without sharpening, if a zombie shambles up while dinner is cooking, you can stab him in the eye, pierce the brain, and kill the sucker. Use them to secure knives to broomsticks or other long wooden sticks for makeshift spears. Alternatively, hang several cans over the fire to cook more than one thing at a time. Killing zombie bastards or makeshift weapons- hangers rock.

Here are a few things every mess kit should have:

  • Large can/pot for boiling water
  • Several smaller cans (nested)
  • Knife/fork/spoon (a spork is perfect)
  • Wire hanger (or several)

That's it. Everything you need for a basic kit. To be honest, you can get by with one small can that doubles to cook, eat, or drink from. I'd prefer at least two cans in the stripped down version - one typical vegetable can with a smaller tomato sauce or paste can for drinking, along with half a wire hanger and a fork. 

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