S.G. Browne

D is for Decomposition

(Author’s Note:  Since Andy tends to have a bit more “hands-on” experience with this subject, I’ll turn things over to him for this entry.)

The smell is the hardest thing to get used to.

You’d think it would be the bloating or the liquifecation of tissues or the fluid from the lungs oozing out of the mouth and nostrils.  The brain can go pretty fast, too.  Bacteria in the mouth chew right through the palate and before you can say “Night of the Living Dead,” your brain is pouring out your ears and bubbling out your mouth.

Fun stuff.

Of course, most of these problems apply to those who reanimated prior to being pumped full of formaldehyde.  (Future post alert.  Guess what F is for?)

In addition to the challenges mentioned above, if you’re unembalmed, you also have sloughage to look forward to.  That’s when the liquid leaking from the body’s ravaged cells gets between the layers of skin and loosens them, causing the skin of fingertips and toes to come off.  Sometimes, entire sheets of skin will peel away from an unembalmed zombie.  I’ve known a few melters who suffered this indignity.

But no matter what class of zombie – embalmed, freshie, or melter – the smell of undeath is almost impossible to mask.  Hydrogen sulphide leaking from various orifices, internal organs fermenting in a formaldehyde stew, the constant odor of gradually rotting meat…it’s a challenge to maintain your dignity when the stench of your rotting flesh wakes you up in the middle of the night.

You try to get it out of your hair or your clothes but no amount of Tide or Pine-Sol or bleach can get rid of the smell.  Someone should make a decent deodorant for zombies, or anything hygiene related, really.  They would make a killing.

(Next entry:  E is for Editor)

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Filed under: Breathers,The Writing Life — Tags: , , — S.G. Browne @ 2:21 pm

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