Experiments in Ontological Relativism

and Other Brain Farts

Guidelines for Safe and Sane Post Mortem Exercise, part 2

Posted by Jason on September 5, 2008

3. Maintaining a Proper Diet.

The worlds of the living and the dead have always been closely linked, and nowhere is this more evident than in the realm of dietary needs. While the living often take their sustenance from plants and animals, the dead have nutritional needs which can only be met by… well, the living. Like so many cultural groups, the Conscious Deceased have often been reviled and feared because of their differing culinary restrictions. Fortunately, the modern world has offered a wealth of new options for the Deceased concerned with his or her diet, without having to worry about offending any but the most bigoted of your neighbors.

The Walking Undead are well known for their preference for cerebral matter. We like to think it’s because they’re so darn brainy! All jokes aside, brain matter does provide the bulk of a Walker’s diet. In the past, it was necessary for this nutrition to be obtained directly from the source, and some foodies still insist this is the best way to enjoy a meal. In recent years, however, a number of restaurants have begun to cater to the Walking Undead. Recipes about on the Internet, ranging from Brains a la King, Brain Curry, and Grilled Brains over Brown Rice to Chilled Brains with Fruit, Brain Ice Cream, and Brain smoothies (for the Deceased on the go!). Also, Emeril’s Spicy Brain Bake is a treat no Walking Undead should miss! BAM!

In addition, you’re no longer stuck having to scrounge for your own food. Supermarkets in all major cities now feature a wide variety of brain matter. We recommend buying your brains fresh from the meats department for best flavor. Look for a brains that are large, but not overly so, firm to the touch, well-shaped, and a medium to light gray in color. Don’t be afraid to sniff your brains before purchasing, as they do go bad fairly quickly. If you don’t have time to go to the grocery store every day (and let’s face it, who does in today’s fast-shambling world?), frozen brains offer an acceptable alternative, though the freezing process can ruin the texture. Always make sure to allow time for frozen brains to thaw naturally. Also, despite the temptation, always keep in mind that cryogenic wards are NOT self-serve freezers.

Haemophages, due to their unique chemistry, require a strictly liquid diet. Though the common name for this dietary substance is already well-known, we feel the “b” word brings with it too many negative connotations. Instead we prefer to call it “heart soup”–hey, everyone needs a heart-healthy diet!

As with brains, you can obtain your heart soup directly from the source, though it’s generally recommended to avoid this practice with strangers. Even with close friends, we recommend you practice safe drinking–use a fangdom (“when hunger bangs, wrap your fangs!”). For the Haemophage on the go, the Red Cross has set up diners across the country (and in many international locations!) where you can drop in for a full meal or a quick bite. If you’re more of a homebody, or you just like to not let leftovers go to waste, heart soup can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, or frozen for longer periods.

No matter where you get it, heart soup is traditionally served warm, with connoisseurs agreeing on 98.6° F (37° C) as the ideal temperature. Lately, though, there has been a growing trend toward eating meals chilled. While we don’t like to do this all the time, it does make for a great treat on those hot summer nights! Whichever way you prefer it, just remember that a healthy Heemie, like your average Englishman, requires three to five pints a day.

Though the Incorporeal Deceased do not need to eat as such–and, indeed, generally have a horrible time trying to handle finger foods–they dorequire a more ethereal sustenance. While the Walking Undead may prefer the meatier parts of the brain, for the Incorp, it’s the thought that counts. A little bit goes a long way, though! A few minutes worth of mental candy is enough to last an active Incorp for a few days, or even a week if it’s high-quality thought.

Though individual tastes vary greatly between Incorps, we recommend choosing a high IQ source for your dinner. Local universities tend to make a great shopping venue, especially if they feature an active graduate program. (Stay away from the frat houses, though–fast food really isn’t good for you in the long run.)  If your town doesn’t have a university, try looking for local book clubs, Mensa groups, or science labs. If all else fails, try some of the local businesses–though we strongly  recommend against snacking at your own workplace.

We’ve found that it’s best to dine when your source is asleep. This produces minimal wear and tear on your source, thereby preserving its freshness! As with all diets, variety is the spice of life. Try out many different kinds of minds to see which appeal to your particular tastes. You may be tempted to splurge on a few attractive, but ultimately non-nutritional, sources, but these kind of “empty calories” can do serious harm to your ethereal form if not taken in moderation. Remember, a doctor a day keeps oblivion away!

[Leave comments! More soon…]

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