What If They Threw a Zombie Mob and Nobody Came?

This man speaks the truth.

On Saturday at noon, my girl Friday and I went to Justin Herman Plaza to investigate an alleged zombie flashmob.

The zombie “mob” was composed of three people dressed up as zombies (one of them, with impressive laziness, had merely applied a piece of duct tape to his blazer; presumably, he was the “ironic” zombie) and at least thirty photographers looking to photograph various zombie types stumbling around the Ferry Building. It was not to be.

In other words, when it comes to zombies, San Francisco is an observing, rather than a participating town.

I suppose I too could have dressed up as a zombie, but my attendance here was exploratory. How hard-core was my local zombie contingent? In lieu of actual participation, I wore my Night of the Living Dead t-shirt, in part because I figured this sartorial choice would send a not-so-subtle clue to any others who required my assistance.

As it turned, the zombie mob people (were there any organizers?) preferred a kind of flagrant yet secretive silence.

“Dude,” said one random fellow to me, looking around suspiciously, “your shirt totally gives you away.”

I never remarked upon the fact that this fellow had an obtrusive and expensive-looking camera hanging around his neck and that he was standing next to four other twentysomethings with obtrusive and expensive-looking cameras around their necks. Whereas I was merely one guy wearing a movie t-shirt.

I asked several people who had vague authority where the zombies were. I was informed that “people were still waking up” (it was 12:00 PM) and that “more would show, don’t worry.”

While the devoted photographer contingency waited around for additional zombies to show up, many of them trying to conceal their sadness by studying various settings on their incredibly expensive gear, this never happened.

“Let’s go get some brewskis,” said a kid who was clearly under 21 and well aware of the zombie mob. I watched this kid and his peers run away at a stunning velocity, hoping that their mass-sprinting for affordable and illegally imbibed alcohol would make up for the zombie shortfall.

My girl Friday and I decided to call it quits at around 12:30 PM. If zombies could not be counted upon to be reasonably punctilious, what was the point of hanging around?


  1. You can put on a tiara and everyone will call you a queen, but being a zombie is more than just wearing a costume. Actual zombiehood, so important in the Year of the Cannibal Zombie (TM), requires a mindless lurching, a slackness of jaw, and a blankness of eye. You may find zombie mobs in the Financial District, Mondays through Fridays, from 7:30-9 a.m.

    They also ride Muni’s J-Church line, 5-7 p.m.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *