Article Title
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Goodbye Sweet Paul

by Zack Poitras

I’m sorry we have to leave you, Paul, but the zombies are on their way, and we can’t take the risk of carrying you out of here. You were bitten pretty badly, ol’ buddy, and you’ll probably become a zombie yourself within the hour. God dammit, I’m so sorry. 

I just want to say, you’re like a brother to me, Paul, and you always will be. Jesus, Paul, I’m so sorry it has to end like this. Here, take this pistol. It only has one bullet left, but that’s all you’ll need. Bye Paul, I’ll never forget...

Yes, that’s right, one bullet.

No, I agree, I don’t think you can take out all the zombies coming up that road with just one bullet, that’s not what it’s for. Think about it, Paul.

I know you know we have more bullets, but we need that extra ammunition, Paul. We’re a fairly large group of survivors and we have women and children to protect. Besides, Paul, I know this may sound insensitive, but you’re going to become a zombie no matter what. The bullet is in case you no longer want to suffer. So long my friend.

No, Paul, don’t shoot it in the air if you want us to come back. We can’t come back. We’re never coming back. The bullet is to, well…Look, I mean you can do whatever you want with that bullet, but the primary reason I gave it to you in the first place is if you don’t want to become a zombie or get eaten alive.

Of course we’re sure you’ll become a zombie. We wouldn’t leave you if we weren’t -- we’re not that kind of ragtag band of survivors. Now I must go, Paul. I’ll miss you forever. I’ll name one of my kids after...

Now wait a minute, Paul -- I am in no way demanding that you kill yourself. That is not my place. I’m just giving you some options. If it all becomes too painful, you can put yourself out of your misery.

Whoa, Jesus, wait! Don’t do it right now! Christ, Paul, at least hang on until I’m out of here. I don’t want to see that. Have some decency.

Yes, if we hear the gunshot from a distance we’ll all think you shot yourself, but we won’t judge you. Look Paul, I really got to go. Take it easy.

What’s that? You need to speak up, Paul, you’re coughing up a lot of blood. Enunciate more.

What will we do once we’ve heard the shot? I don’t know, we’ll probably stop in our tracks and look at each other a bit, think to ourselves, “What have our lives become,” etc. etc. 

To be honest, Paul, you’re not the first person in our group to be left to kill himself and we have zombies to worry about so I don’t know when we’ll get the time to have a group reflection about you and your accomplishments. Paul, I see the zombies approaching. I’m out of here, okay? Adios, amigo.

Do not say this is my fault, Paul! You are being so selfish about all this. Just do the right thing -- wait until you can’t see me anymore, and then shoot yourself in the head. Do us all a favor. 

Yes, now I’m fucking telling you. Look, Paul everyone’s waiting for me.

Paul, do not aim that at me. I’m trying to help you out, Paul.

You want me to shoot you? Alright.

What do you mean I was too quick to say ‘alright?’ Zombies are less than a hundred yards away right now. This has all taken way too long.

What if you like being a zombie? What the fuck is that supposed to mean? You won’t know you’re a zombie. Zombies don’t have any human memories, or else they wouldn’t come after their friends.

Don’t come after me, Paul. That’s not a nice thing to say. You don’t mean that. Look, I’m backing up now. I’m walking away. Shoot yourself in the head as soon as I turned around.

Okay, I turned around but you’re not shooting yourself. What’s going on, Paul? Paul?

Ahh! Great, now a zombie just bit me. Are you happy, Paul? You didn’t even warn me. Real low.

I know zombies chewing on our bodies is an awful experience, Paul, so would you do me a favor and use that bullet to put me out of my...


Fuck you, Paul! Fuck you!!!

Image courtesy of jerekeys


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Zack Poitras originally hails from Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Brooklyn. His work has appeared in McSweeney’s Internet Tendency and as a contributing writer to The Onion. Zack is also a member of the comedy group Pangea 3000. His favorite sound is someone biting into something juicy, like a watermelon or something. Contact him at zack.poitras [at]