Monday, March 23, 2009

Dead Men Tell Slow Tales

In addition to the "expressiveness" difficulties with communication, zombies and traditionally biotic folks have the hurdle of our slower rate of speech to contend with. Please note, however, that most of us hear just fine, so shouting at the top of your lungs isn't going to speed the conversation up any faster than it would with, say, someone who only speaks Norwegian. Conversely, volume is a problem for us as well; many zombies can make their voices raise above a whisper only with great effort.

I'm afraid that our inability to speak at a normal speed causes many of us to not speak at all, unfortunately. To be dead in public is almost the very definition of being self-conscious, where the dead person is well aware that all the eyes of the living are upon them. Add to that the idea of speaking in public when you can't quite get the words out fast enough and you have many kids that would rather say nothing at all.

This doesn't mean we don't have anything to say.

The fact that typical communication happens at a much faster rate, perhaps, then ever before in human history only compounds the matter. ZOMG! Lol, srsly. We understand that it is difficult to go from speed-of-thought texting and near-telepathic communications with living friends to the slow, drawn out dialogue you may have with a zombie, trust me. It wasn't all that long ago when we were doing the same things as you were.

I have a friend, a zombie, named Melissa who lost the ability to speak in a fire. For the record, the fire that injured her in this way was not what killed her; she was hurt in a fire that was meant to destroy her and a group of zombies she lived with. A fire that was mostly successful--only she and a boy escaped a blaze that left many others reterminated.

Melissa communicates now with a whiteboard and marker. She can't write very fast, or very neatly, and it sometimes takes her longer to write what she wants to say than it does even the slowest zombie to speak. Communicating with Melissa, then, is an act of patience even for a zombie. But, like most acts of patience, it is always well worth the effort. Despite all of the pain and heartache she has gone through (or maybe because of it), the things that she writes are inevitably profound. I've talked to her a few times since she began taking classes at the Hunter Foundation, and she has often provided me the necessary insight to solve an issue that I or one of our zombie friends is dealing with.

I guess what I'm saying is, just like in my post regarding expression, patience is the key. I've come to the realization that, between two people, the listener has the primary responsibility in communication. The best, most erudite speaker in the world is going to have a hard time getting through to someone who isn't paying any attention, whereas a good listener--one who is patient, open, and making an honest effort to understand--can often hear even the things that the shy, still voice
isn't saying.



Raschel_[Reads it.] said...

Very nicely put Tommy ^_^

Gothic Temptation said...

I really think that it's good that there are SOME people in the world who don't speak text language. plus, only speaking a little bit means the things you say are more respected

animeface said...

One moment of patience may ward off great disaster. One moment of impatience may ruin a whole life.

(Okay, I admit it, I DID get that from a fortune cookie...)

But I agree that patience is really important. Most people in today's society tend to overlook patience as they rush around with their busy and hectic schedules, and it eventually leads to carelessness and an apathetic attitude. If we could just learn to be a bit more patient, I think it could solve a lot of problems.

xgaskarth said...

speaking of not being able to speak... can Adam yet?

Tara said...

I hate it when people talk in text (i mean, srsly ppl! that is just not cool.) JK! LOL!! ok, seriously, i'm kidding...
anyways, i think you're right about people not listening. not only to DB people, but really everyone. patience is an aquired art, so you'll need practice, but a good deed is always rewarded! think happy thoughts!!
<3 Tara

Werewolf Moon said...

Patience is the hardest virtue for anyone to comeby and it's been lost with years of texting iming emailing...etc. It's about time teenagers in the world learn patience.

Kim said...


YourDeadFriendBee said...

Wow. Hilarious title, Tommy.
And really great gooey insides. :) (Of the blog, I mean ;p)
That makes me want to shut up once in a while and be a better listener :D

Steph said...

I said LOL for the first time today. It was shameful.
Very nice post.

Steph - Steph: 1. Rest of world: 0. Follow my blog and you get a free cookie!

xXFallenXAngelXx said...

That was Very well put Tommy....u have a tru Talent for writing!! ur right about the whole Patience thing...and about the slow talknig thing how is Adam doing? i havent heard much. Keep upo the Amazing writing <3

Anonymous said...


Anna-Tommy-lover said...

Tommy I´m ur ยบ1 fan ever!
I love you!
Hey,one question...
Do you like reading?
What books do u like?
Well, gotta go!
I love u!
Always loving u, Anna.

Sonakaru said...

Patience is probably hardest for me, since I have the attention span of a roverinski hamster. It isn't because I use 'txt tlk', in fact I hate it, I just have a hard time paying attention.
Which some how does not affect me getting straight A's in school...
But, I always try my hardest to wait, and find out what they want to say to me. Usually it's something of value, unlike a lot of the useless things that get said now-a-days..
We trads take our freedom to speak whenever we want too lightly...

Anonymous said...

my regards to mellisa.
First off, i would like to point out that my biggest nightmare, is the old zombies. Not differently biotic, but, um, blood and gutz movie zombies. You have no idea how many nightmares i've had of me ebing eaten alive. And i'm not saying this to put you people at the HH and stuff down, but, i have diffbio friends that i talk to online, and i really like them. One lives in my area, and i know of him because he goes to a school a bit away, he suggested we hang out, and i want to know that if i go to hang out with him, that i won't clam up and make a bad impression on him. I want to help change how bad things are for you guys, but old nighmares dont die too easily. And suggestions?

Secondly, i have a theory.
Before the first "zombie" in out generation, where did the legen come from? Obviously it has been around for awhile, that's why people are able to hate and love diffbio people for who and what they are, but, what if Dallas jones wasn't the first?

Obviously the first on camera, and probably the first in decades, if not centuries.

I think it could be a recessive gene the preserves the brain and nervous system in a way that when someone who has it dies, they can come back, that may have been a bit more recessive years ago, but with today's radiation levels, and somewhat preservatives in our food and shots and tests we get as we grow up, help preserve more and more and more. i mean, what if it isn't a matter of good and evil, but a matter of who your parents are. I mean, that explains why only ceartin kids come back and why more and more come back yearly. It's getting stronger.

Anyway, i just wanted to run it by you, and hopefully if it isn't a suckky theory, maybe even the foundation.

socially unacceptable said...

Just finished the book.

YOU DROVE ME CRAZY TOWARDS THE ENDING OF THE BOOK!!! (I even threw it at the wall when you confessed you only wanted to kiss 'A GIRL')

other than that

Patietnce is good and all that jazz

Tommy Williams said...


You get good fortune cookies.

I don't miss them, believe it or not. But they are one of Gamera's favorite snacks for some reason.


Tommy Williams said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tommy Williams said...


Thank you.--

I read constantly. I used to be a big science fiction fan but I've found that my tastes changed after I zombified. I mostly read nonfiction now. Current events.


Tommy Williams said...




Tommy Williams said...


Adam is not doing so great, actually.


Tommy Williams said...




Tommy Williams said...


Your theory makes more sense than a lot of what gets passed off as science, IMHO (See, I'm not totally against text speech).

I think it is very unlikely that Dallas Jones was the first zombie. I think he was just the first zombie caught on camern public. I think it also was significant that he died in the commission of a crime, which makes the very first association the American public got was zombies = evil.

As far as your new friend, my only suggestion is that you approach him as you would any new acquaintence--with caution, but with an open min and a friendly spirit. He's just like you, but deceased.

Thank you for the thoughtful post.


Tommy Williams said...

Socially Unacceptable--

Of course I like Phoebe.


Tara said...

ummm.... wait, what does IMHO mean? like some peoples usernames state, I really am Socially Unacceptable. I know, I'm an idiot.
<3 Tara

Hel said...

Patrence is a virtue....
something I lack...
but I have momments aboutit.
and having strange moods is normal...I have them all the time love, so don't fret

Dana said...

Tommy, you're blogs such an inspiration to all of us, traditionally and differently biotic alike. I've just started reading the blog, so I'm a little behind...but I'm getting there. Thanks for posting this blog, Tommy.

Anonymous said...

I've heard about Mellissa. Personally, I think she's amazing for even doing the whiteboard thing. It's inspirational, as your blog also happens to be. I love reading it, and keep iy up.
I've known a few zombies since very shortly after their death, and they all adavanced rather differently through their speech patterns. But they all required patience to understand them. Amanda was actually talking just 6 days after the incident, while Maddie didn't say a word until almost a week and a half later. Kelsey can talk, but she refuses too. She is having a very hard time with being a zombie. She says pretty much nothing ,by choice, but I've found that she can communciate her thoughts if you're patient enough. Maddie's specch is slower and slightly impended, but with some patience, she says very teen girl-ish things. Amanda can talk with fewer puases, but she'll get stuck and takes a minute to restart herself from time to time. Also, her movements are much slower than the other girls. With some patience, she's fine though, and I think that all people should show more patience not only to zombies, but to everyone in general.
Finally, Tommy, if you could be one place in the world, where would you be?

bella said...

ok ok ok enough tommy not everyone is patient enough to talk to a zombie my bff would be like "wouls u just spit it out already!" she will never learn. i try to teach her manners but its like taking a horse to water u can't force it to drink but u can drown the horse sure. but that would be really really bad. considering the horse cant come back

follow_the_white_rabbit said...

I get what you're saying I to have communication issues with my friend , he's deaf and I don't know sign language and it takes about 20 sec. just to say 3 sentences.
We communicate using text. Or writing down what we want say, we do often get frustrated with how slow the conversation is going but we try to b patient since we both have a desirability, he cant hear and I don't know sign language.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree, speaking in needed as well as lisening.Good insights, Tommy.