PreparationsPreparations by Mark Mills
My rating: 4/5 cats
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

A rotten hand snaked out from behind a desk and grabbed his sleeve.

Ronald always went over his clothes with razor blades before wearing them, carefully sawing away at the seams so they would rip if pulled. His sleeve tore off, and the zombie stuffed the cloth in its mouth before realizing its mistake. But others were popping up, blocking the path to the door. He’d never get to the exit now, but he might make it back to the bathroom.

A huge zombie, the remnant of a man too obese to walk while alive, shuffled towards him, the first of a pack. Ronald vaulted over a desk, scattering registration forms and pens, dodged the fat zombie, and ran towards the bathroom.

He’d practiced just this maneuver hundreds of times at home.

there wasn’t a new free tor short this week, so, to honor SPOOKTOBER, i went back into the archives to find a horror-short i hadn’t yet read and landed on this one; a humorous tale about the devastating hubris of the zombie-prepper.

it’s short and funny, and it was just the thing i needed to start my day off on the right shamble-draggy foot. how can someone who has been preparing for a zombie invasion get caught off-guard?

enter the bmv.

just for funsies, after reading this story, i decided to play a round of “Typo or Real Thing?”, and TIL: while many of the united states have a department of motor vehicles (DMV), indiana, maine, and ohio have a BMV—a bureau of motor vehicles. but wait, it gets even MORE interesting (debatable). check this shit out:

Alabama – AL – MVD (Motor Vehicle Division)
Alaska – AK – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Arizona – AZ – MVD (Motor Vehicle Division)
Arkansas – AR – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
California – CA – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Colorado – CO – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Connecticut – CT – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Delaware – DE – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Florida – FL – HSMV (Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles)
Georgia- GA – DDS (Department of Driver Services)
Hawaii – HI – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Idaho – ID – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Illinois – IL – DSD (Driver Services Department)
Indiana – IN – BMV (Bureau of Motor Vehicles)
Iowa – IA – MVD (Motor Vehicle Division)
Kansas – KS – DOV (Division of Vehicles)
Kentucky – KY – Driver Services & Vehicle Services
Louisiana – LA – Office of Motor Vehicles
Maine – ME – BMV (Bureau of Motor Vehicles)
Maryland – MD – MVA (Motor Vehicle Administration)
Massachusetts – MA – RMV (Registry of Motor Vehicles)
Michigan – MI – Michigan DMV is under the SOS (Secretary of State)
Minnesota – MN – DVS (Driver and Vehicle Services)
Mississippi – MS – Driver Service Bureau
Missouri – MO – DMV
Montana – MT – MVD (Motor Vehicle Division)
Nebraska – NE – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Nevada – NV – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
New Hampshire – NH – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
New Jersey – NJ – MVC (Motor Vehicle Commission)
New Mexico – NM – MVD (Motor Vehicle Division)
New York – NY – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
North Carolina – NC – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
North Dakota – ND – ND driver services are under the DOT (Department of Transportation)
Ohio – OH – BMV (Bureau of Motor Vehicles)
Oklahoma – OK – OK driver services are under DPS (Department of Public Safety)
Oregon – OR – DMV
Pennsylvania – PA –DMV
Rhode Island – RI – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
South Carolina – SC – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
South Dakota – SD – SD DMV services are under DPS (Department of Public Safety) and DOR (Department of Revenue)
Tennessee – TN – Driver Services
Texas – TX – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Utah – UT – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Vermont – VT – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Virginia – VA – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Washington DC – DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles)
Washington – WA – DOL (Department of Licensing)
West Virginia – WV – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Wisconsin – WI – DMV (Division of Motor Vehicles)
Wyoming – WY – WYDOT Driver Services


i’ve lived in new york for more than half my life, but i’m FROM rhode island, and i didn’t even know that we were a division of motor vehicles; i always thought it was a department. are these state-to-state differences an acronymic quirk everyone knows about except for dummies like me who never got their driver’s license? what a crazy little world.

so, look—i know 2020 has been divisive and horrible, but it’s an election year, and i don’t want to get all political or anything, but now more than ever, can we please think about what’s best for our nation and unite our motor vehicle departments under one uniform banner? for the children?

anyway, while this story may not be as scary as all of the things happening in the realworld right now, maybe that’s a good thing, yeah? plus, that bonus tip about clothing-prep for a potential zombie attack, the fascinating vehicular division-divisions, and—i don’t know how this is possible given my not infrequemt trips to the land of zombie entertainment, but i had never heard the term “vigor mortis” before this story, and i LOVE it. so, three good things for me, plus i loved the ending, which gave me a shudder when i went back and reread the first paragraph, because his description of THAT SOUND is spot on and super-icky.

be smart, be well, drive safely.

read it for yourself here:…

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this feels gauche, but when i announced i was starting a blog, everyone assured me this is a thing that is done. i’m not on facebook, i’ve never had a cellphone or listened to a podcast; so many common experiences of modern life are foreign to me, but i’m certainly struggling financially, so if this is how the world works now, i’d be foolish to pass it up. any support will be received with equal parts gratitude and bewilderment.

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