Max Brooks shows how to be ‘practi-cool’ not ‘tacti-cool’


One hundred and thirty South Dakota residents are now prepared for a zombie apocalypse thanks to the help of author and zombie expert Max Brooks.

Brooks spoke on Monday, April 23 in the Volstorff Ballroom. His comedic dialogue put many audience members into fits of laughter and for some, tears. No area was safe when it came to Brooks’ narrative.

Brooks has two prominent books: The Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War. Brooks detailed points from the survival guide. The first tip he gave the audience was to forget everything they had ever learned about zombies and battle tactics.

“Do you know why zombies are scary?” he asked those in the crowd. “Because they are the only monsters who will find you. You have to hunt for every other creature in their world, in their cave. But zombies? Oh no. They’ll come to you.”

He asked what the most important thing during a zombie invasion is. One might think a car or a gun, however both are incorrect. The most important item is water.

“It’s not glamorous. It’s not sexy. But it’s survival,” Brooks said. “You have to think in terms of practical applications, or as I call it, practi-cool because what’s cooler than surviving?”

Brooks also recommended getting together a group with a wide range of skills, relocating somewhere remote, obtaining a melee weapon and using bicycles. He talked a lot about the melee weapon because he feels it is one of the most important things to remember. Guns have limited ammunition and there isn’t enough to combat every zombie that may come in to existence, however, a sword or an axe has multiple uses and is better protection for a person.

Those in attendance were mixed about the actual possibility of a zombie epidemic.

“I don’t believe it could really happen, but it sure is fun to get into it,” said Keeli Eberhart, a sophomore chemistry major. She and other attendees came to the event equipped with their own books for a book signing with Brooks after the presentation.

University Program Council’s Forums Coordinator and event coordinator Michael Dendinger differs.

“I believe in a disease epidemic that could affect the entire world, whether it be zombies or another disease,” he said.

Dendinger also said he brought Brooks to SDSU because he likes zombies and apocalypse-related things and who better to bring than the expert himself?