The Duck of Minerva

The Duck Quacks at Twilight

More on the Svalbard Zombie menace

July 22, 2008

From Damien Mansell of Swansea University:

The cabin was situated on the top of a ridge, at the bottom of a large valley looking out to the Arctic Ocean. The Ocean met large ice-cliffs and nunataks, which stared back at us from across the water.

We shared out all the necessary equipment and supplies amongst our packs and pulkas (sledges). Those who skied ahead of us had the coal and fire wood and we were welcomed by a toasty warm fire.

Adam and I cooked up a large chilli to satisfy our growing bellies. It took much longer than we anticipated as we had to melt snow to produce drinking water, and you need a lot of snow to make a reasonable amount of water. Conversation in the candle-lit cabin was mostly about the possible confrontation of a polar bear.

Then in burst Professor Doug Benn and Dr Nick Hulton, armed not with rifles but whisky and a guitar. It was a brilliant night and, along with Dr Ian Rutt who walked with us to BjØrndalen, they performed this years ‘Svalbard song’ about the Svalbard zombies and permafrost graves, it was very surreal.

It is becoming clear that we must now ask ourselves a terrifying question: how long before Svalbard raises a force of Zombie Panzerbjøorn?

UPDATE: are our own Black Bears a fifth column? Dave Noon chronicles a suspicious incident.

Image: Map displaying sea monsters lurking around Svalbard. Source: Universitetet i Tromsø

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Daniel H. Nexon is a Professor at Georgetown University, with a joint appointment in the Department of Government and the School of Foreign Service. His academic work focuses on international-relations theory, power politics, empires and hegemony, and international order. He has also written on the relationship between popular culture and world politics.