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Zombies Ate My Hostas: Taylor Swift and Other Indisputable Proof of the Inevitable Apocalypse


Hosta2

“Even those who arrange and design shrubberies are under considerable economic stress in this period in history.” — Roger The Shrubber

They insisted there was a perfectly natural explanation, that the damage wasn’t anything that should cause alarm. But I knew better. How else could you explain the gruesome demise of thirty young, healthy, vibrant hostas cut down in the prime of their lives — their tops gnawed clean off by one or more ravenous, undead savages.

Zombies. Yes, zombies. Vegetarian  zombies. Who knew?

Now where is CNN? Or Fox News? With a half dozen cable news channels chasing Miley Cyrus  around, you’d think they’d spare one of their washed-up, ethnically-ambiguous anchors to cover the most important story of this century. Their silence is deafening. And I fear it is all part of a larger, darker, more herbivoracious  conspiracy of swiftian proportions.

Now hey there, please don’t mistake me for one of those sc-fi channel watching nimrods posting zombie survival strategies on Reddit. I even watched AMC long before The Walking Dead made them hip and trendy, back in the nineties when they played  — movies. AMC was the cable channel every grandmother loved the grand kids to watch after their visit to the local podiatrist. How wonderful! We can watch the Brigadoon marathon together all afternoon while my bunions heal. And now generations of family therapists can never hope to profit from those precious, repressed memories.

Deer

Ticked off.

Yet, had the savage beheading of my cherished hostas been an isolated incident, I might be inclined to politely swallow this innocent explanation like a cracker full of lukewarm hummus. But no. At a recent cocktail hour in the presence of an abundance of passed appetizers,  I watched three adults who I presumed to be of sound mind and body, skip over scallop-wrapped bacon in favor of the spinakopita. Spinakopita? Really? Pass over the, luscious undisputed king of all cocktail hour delicacies in favor of…spinach? It was unnatural, and twisted, and instantly raised my acutely-sharpened suspicions perfected by hours of cable news watching.  Something was dreadfully wrong, here. But what was it? What had changed? What was the key? Something was perverting the meat-eaters of our nation, and I was determined to get to the bottom of it for the sake of innocent, professionally farmed and landscaped vegetation everywhere.

And then it struck me. (OK, so maybe that was just a backhand from the asylum nurse… but stay with me here.) I suddenly knew who was responsible for the carnage.

 Taylor Swift.

Making Waves.

Oh, I can hear your eyes rolling. But at the precise moment my hostas were first attacked,  Taylor Swift, the rich, famous, adorable and most beloved icon in the country music universe, uprooted her decadent, opulent life to move into a new home in (of all places) Westerly, Rhode Island.

Yes, Westerly. Seriously? Was it for the burgeoning surfing scene?

Now relocating to Westerly should have been suspicious enough —  even people from Rhode Island don’t go to Westerly —  but it was the  ever-present rumors of her vegetarianism that were far more telling and terrifying.  (Almost as terrifying, in fact, as one of those skeletal, teenage girls you see volunteering at seemingly EVERY veterinarian office with the pointy chins and giant foreheads. Eeek!)

hanging1

Oh my gourd.

There it was for all to see: armed security guards, beach patrols, paparazzi, helicopters and Taylor Swift cruising for pumpkins in the produce aisle at Narragansett’s Stop and Shop. These were not chance occurrences. As everyone knows, pumpkins are the least cerebral of all the garden vegetables. They are the village idiots of the backyard vegetable patch — profoundly bad parents who  allow their offspring to grow up in the most dangerous spots only to be  later left  to be degraded and humiliated by other species.  Unlike corn, a pumpkin is the perfect evil minion.

Bad seeds.

Bad seeds.

But corn is no innocent bystander. Corn, you see, is far more clever and not as easily manipulated. Corn fields act more like socialist news pundits with a well developed power to communicate. If you don’t believe me, read  Stephen King’s Children of the Corn or go watch Field of Dreams. And this was long before the agricultural biotech company Monsanto genetically engineered them into a vegetable master race. So when corn has something to say, you darn-well keep your ears open.  And once Ms. Swift arrived on the scene, Southern Rhode Island’s cornfields welcomed her with open arms.

Stalking a celebrity.

Now I don’t mean to give the traditional brain-eating zombies the cold shoulder (sorry), but I have learned that the vegetarian zombies are far more dangerous and elusive. You won’t find the conventional evidence of torn, blood-stained clothes and random chunks of human flesh scattered about. Instead they’ll sneak up on you ahead of a trail of Panera-acquired bread crumbs, latte cups, plantain chips and empty packages of gluten-free pasta. (It is important at this point to note that some vegan zombies don’t consider vegetarian zombies to be “real” zombies, but perhaps we can explore that in a subsequent post.)

It is evidence of the apocalypse, and it is coming. And if anyone driving a Mini Cooper tries to tell you that sun dried tomatoes make an excellent substitute for bacon, it may be too late. The apocalypse may well have arrived.

Hosta la vista, baby.

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Rhode Rules


It’s not that I haven’t been penning blog posts in recent months, it’s just that I haven’t been posting them to my own blog.

“Guest blogging” elsewhere brings with it many pluses and minuses. There’s no doubt it puts your work and voice in front of new audiences, but it also tends to leave your own blog vacant, dry and silently screaming for fresh content and visitors. Veteran bloggers tell me that the first rule of blogging is that if you have no content, then just trick someone else into writing a “guest post”  for you. And if no one is fool enough to accept your offer (as I frequently do), then simply re-post links to someone else’s work with the same enthusiasm that you might use if you had suddenly discovered Captain Kidd’s lost treasure. “Oh Wow..! Check out this unbelievable blog post on… blah… blah…. blah…”

Hmmm. But what if I could accomplish both? What if I invited myself to guest blog on my own blog, and then simply stole my own original content from somewhere else at the same time? Brilliant!

If there is no crying in baseball, and the first rule of fight club is do not talk about fight club — hey,wait. This is the Internet. There are no rules!

They're more what you'd call guidelines than actual rules...

They’re more like what you’d call guidelines than actual rules…

So without further ado, here are two of my blog posts originally published on Nebraska romance novelist Annette Snyder‘s nifty little blog, “Fifty Authors from Fifty States.” The first was published in September 2013, the other just a week ago.

“Oh Wow..! Check out these unbelievable blog posts on…”

BIG HAPPENINGS IN LITTLE RHODY (by Steven R. Porter) — September 30, 2012
I’m writing this piece near the mythical dark swamp of Chepachet, Rhode Island…”

IT’S A RHODE ISLAND THING (by Steven R. Porter) — August 25, 2013
 “Yo, nobody can’t tell me I don’t feel like no meatball grinder, me.”

But I must warn you. In a couple of weeks, this blog will be the only thing saving you all from the forthcoming zombie apocalypse. Stay tuned.

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