Most weekends, it's just great to be alive. But this weekend, it's even better to be undead.
Saturday, if you can believe it, was World Zombie Day. Zombtastic events were held in more than 50 cities around the planet -- including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Seattle, Pittsburgh, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Paris.
Paris, people. The one place where a race of putrefied, soulless, flesh-eating corpses would actually be an improvement over the current population.
And as if that's not enough cadaver-animating excitement for one weekend? Tonight, season three of the hit zombie apocalypse series "The Walking Dead" premieres on AMC-TV.
Be still, my mouthwateringly meaty beating heart.
If you ask me, this whole zombie thing is getting out of hand. Quite frankly, I struggle to understand mankind's widespread fascination with all things zombified.
Care to venture a guess as to what this year's hot Halloween costume is turning out to be? Well, OK, it's Big Bird. This, thanks to Mitt Romney's debate-night proclamation that, if elected, he'd declare open season on the yellow-feathered lug.
But according to the National Retail Federation, one of the top costumes for Halloween dress-up, for the second year in a row, is none other than ... you guessed it ... the zombie.
I will say that it's pretty impressive that zombies have their own international day. After all, you don't see folks running around touting a World Vampire Day, or a World Ghost Day, or even a World Witch Day. (And no, Mother's Day doesn't count, you naughty, naughty scamps.)
So then, where did World Zombie Day get its start? Well, it's a bit difficult pinning down the brainchild of this fledgling holiday ("Mmmmm, brainchild ..."), but near as we can tell, it grew out of a Zombie Walk first held in Pittsburgh in 2006. That event was staged at the Monroeville Mall, setting for George Romero's classic 1978 zombie film "Dawn of the Dead."
Today, World Zombie Day is an international celebration that is traditionally held each year on the second Saturday in October. There's also a charity aspect to it, with many of the events of the day focused on relieving hunger and homelessness.
And, while World Zombie Day has yet to be celebrated on a grand scale here at the Top o' Utah, Ogden does play host to a mighty fine Zombie Prom each summer. Yes, Zombie Prom. Hey, everybody needs a little chance for romance.
Yes, indeed. Zombies are all the rage.
Well, enjoy it while it lasts, folks. Because, unlike the typical lifespan of a member of the undead masses, zombie chic can't last forever.
You do realize that it's only a matter of time before Stephenie Meyer and her ilk do to zombies what they did to other heretofore feared characters of the horror genre, right? Why, Meyer has already pretty much single-handedly ruined several creatures of the night for us -- making vampires these emotionally complex, sparkly hotties, and turning werewolves into vapid hunks who, near as we can figure, spend their days between full moons riding motorcycles and taking off their excruciatingly tight-fitting T-shirts.
Seriously. Is that the sort of fate you want for your zombies? Their "Twilightification"?
Mark my words: Somebody will end up writing a trilogy of books, probably called something like "Fifty Shades of Grey Matter," wherein it turns out that for all their bad habits, zombies are simply misunderstood rebels without a pulse, gangrenous guys who look hot in their torn jeans and tousled hair (styled with just the right mixture of gel and matted blood), and who make reeeeely good boyfriends. Mostly because they're such good listeners. Mostly because they can't speak.
Ah, but the best part about these neo-zombies of the tweener-fiction movement? They're not like all of the other guys out there, who fixate on certain physical attributes of the opposite sex and only think about one thing, if you catch my drift. And yeah, OK, so technically I suppose you could say that zombies don't think about anything.
Still, it's rather refreshing to know that there are guys out there who are "different." Guys who aren't afraid to show the girls their soft underbelly, so to speak. Guys who share the one defining characteristic that strong, liberated women have been looking for all of their lives.
A guy who actually likes a girl for her brains.
Mark Saal has narrowed his Halloween dress-up choices to either a roadkill armadillo or presidential debate moderator Jim Lehrer. In a fortuitous bit of planning, the two costumes are essentially the same. Contact him at 801-625-4272 or firstname.lastname@example.org.