Ten life lessons from “The Walking Dead”


Well, devoted fans, we’re on hiatus until October.

Until then, here are just a couple of thoughts that apply to life and politics that we could learn from our favorite zombie-killers.

1. Sometimes, life changes whether you want it too or not, and you’ll be faced with tough decisions.  You can have all the best damn plans in the world, but sometimes something out of your control goes haywire, and it effects you dearly. As has been said many times, it’s not what happens, its how you deal with it.  Once you’re in a situation, you sometimes find out that the “right” thing to do is difficult, and may be unpopular at the time. You may never have to face the zombie apocalypse, but bad things happen to all of us.

2. No matter how idealistic you are, there are always bad people in the world. Always have been, always will be.  You can paste all the “Coexist” bumper stickers you want, but some people are just bad. It’s one of the realities of life, and a staple on a show like this. The real drama on the Walking Dead is not the zombies, it’s all the other people you have to deal with. That’s a lot like real life. I can deal with the zombies, but bad people can get in the way all the time.

3. There are a limited number of people in your life that you can truly count on. The government doesn’t count as one of those people. Yea, Woodbury was lovely. Sure, the Governor cared about people. He cared about people that served his purpose.  There will always be groups. People are naturally ethno-centric. You can get people to form “Hands across America.” But just wait until the chips are down. They return to their people.

4. You can yack about diversity all you want, but when it gets down to it, no one cares. Sure, you can say it’s a diverse show. But the people in this show that bonded, bonded not because they’re diverse, but because they serve a purpose. In the end, you need people that contribute to the effort, and it doesn’t matter who they are or what they look like. If you want to call that diversity, go ahead.  Because the flip side of that coin is, if you’re worthless, it doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like either.

5. Occasionally, you have to exclude someone or turn your back on them. You can only help people so much, then it’s on them.  Our society has decided we’ll help people whether they want it or not and whether these people help themselves or not. Eventually, people have to help themselves, or nothing will ever change. Sometimes you have to tell people to “Look at the flowers.”

6. No matter how much you think you should be able to get along, others may attack you anyway.  If you’re not prepared, you can lose what you have. Even if you think you live in a fortified prison, sometimes, people are just bad and may want to take what’s yours. (see number 2).  The Governor  and Rick’s group could have lived in harmony, but it just wasn’t going to be. The Governor was one of those guys.  To quote Alfred from “The Dark Knight”, “Sometimes, people just want to watch the world burn.”

7. Eventually, like Terminus, bureaucracies exist simply to support themselves.  They do not have your best interests at heart, no matter what the marketing campaign says.  I spent 24 years in the USAF. If I had a dime for every time some middle-aged civilian bureaucrat should’ve been kicked out of their job 10 years ago because they no longer cared about their performance, I’d have a truckload of dimes.

8.  Don’t judge a book, or a government organization, by it’s cover. Even if a pleasant lady greets you at the door “With a plate” it doesn’t necessarily mean everything’s ok. Sometimes it’s a plate of barbecue, and you’re next on the grill. “Come to Terminus.” Sure, these people one-upped the Governor. They invited people to their community. Why? Not to turn this into a long movie quote, but to quote Charlton Heston, “Soylent Green is people!”

9. Even if you’re the good guy, someday you may have to rip out someone’s throat to protect those you love.

10. In the end, the best you can hope for is to be with the people you love.  Even if you’re stuck in a train car.

And on the menu.


About whatshupp

I'm a project manager engaged with social media, technology, energy efficiency. A retired member of the United States Air Force, I've become a bit of a distance runner.
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