I am the victim of a zombie apocalypse.
I have staunchly refused to get on the Downton Abbey train. Kerry Washington’s fabulous wardrobe has not tempted me to watch Scandal. I know I would have loved Parenthood, but I would not commit to six seasons of an hour long drama. The irony of that statement will soon become clear.
If there is a bag of candy in my house, I will eat it. The whole thing. My willpower is strong in the grocery store but falls to pieces once chocolate is in my home. I know my weakness; I tell myself I might as well just finish the bag so I can get back to eating healthy. And then I finish it.
For years, I have held off on subscribing to Netflix for the same reason. Once it comes into my house, I am a goner. So I have resisted getting it, just like I have resisted watching any new television shows. I like the few I watch, and that’s enough. I don’t need the time suck, and I know I would go all in once I had access to entire seasons of entertainment. Books would be discarded, writing would be ignored, projects would be put on hold.
Yet I deluded myself. This one time, I thought, I would get the bag of candy and not eat the whole thing. I would ration it and savor each piece, and it would last a long time.
That lasted for two days, and then the zombies came.
Matt and I started watching The Fall on Netflix, in the few hours of quiet we have after the kids head to bed on the weekends. We don’t have time to watch together during the week, so we picked a series that only has two seasons and a handful of episodes in each one. We can watch one or two a week, and finish by summer.
Then on Sunday, I found myself with some quiet time. The kids were doing homework, Matt was doing work, and I was feeling lazy. I flipped on Netflix and saw the zombies. The Walking Dead is in its fifth season; was I willing to make that commitment? Could I catch up on four seasons?
I am now in the midst of the zombie apocalypse; I’m eating the whole damn bag of candy. I watch when I’m folding laundry. I watch on the treadmill, sound cranked up to the maximum so I can hear over the hum of the machine. I watch while I’m eating lunch, which is not a wise move. I watch at night while the rest of my family is doing their own thing, and I watch after they go to sleep.
I feel guilty, but I cannot stop. I feel guilty because I don’t want to stop.
Yesterday I was driving to Trader Joe’s, and I saw something on the road. I thought it was a piece of zombie flesh, because I am NUTS. Today I looked out over the shopping center parking lot and glimpsed what I initially thought were the walking dead shuffling along. What will I see tomorrow? I haven’t started dreaming about zombies yet, but I’m sure it’s coming.
My Entertainment Weekly magazine arrived earlier this week, and this was the cover.
I quickly tore out the article without reading it, and stuck it in a drawer to read once I’m caught up. I’m trying to avoid spoilers, which I know is futile. People die constantly on this show; how in the world will I be able to shield myself from knowing what happened to my new comrades?
I could hole up in my bedroom and watch the entire series. Don’t think I haven’t considered that.
I am hesitant to share my shameful behavior; clearly I have a problem. Yet this problem is precisely the reason why I have to write about it. I actually have written a little this week, but I’m having trouble focusing. So I sit here at my computer and pour out my heart, just like the zombies have been pouring out their guts and brains for the past four days.
I’m setting a horrible example for my children. My family is making fun of me, and my husband thinks I’m obsessed.
I don’t disagree with him.