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The City That Ate My Brain!

Saturday I enjoyed spending time with some fine Buffalo folks, and took part in a popular October ritual: drinking Pumpkin Spice Latte at Caffé Aroma. But while sipping and watching the life on Elmwood, things suddenly got weird and we found ourselves watching the unlife.
Covered with blood, gore, and gashes, dozens of moaning zombies began shuffling past. What could be responsible for the sudden zombie invasion, we wondered. Sunspots? A disease? The financial meltdown (one of the zombies looked at bit like a broker friend of mine)? The Bills losing ugly last weekend?

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On hearing several of the zombies moan “brains…brains…” I momentarily feared for the safety of my caffeination companion, who has an unusually fine brain. But the gruesome parade continued shuffling past. Later, on the bus back downtown, another “yikes!” moment: while stopped in traffic, zombies came up to the bus, and even clawed at the windows! What was up with these zombies, and what did they want??
I got the answer a few hours later, while visiting Mobility Across the Ages. I came across one of the zombies who had managed to “zombie shuffle” over to the Buffalo Central Terminal, and found out that what we had seen was called—no surprise here—“Zombie Walk.” It was an interesting experience to chat with someone with bloody internal organs protruding from a gash in his abdomen. My zombie friend told me that he’s from western Massachusetts, and was visiting some friends in Buffalo who invited him to “get bloody” and go on Zombie Walk. Well, who could say no? I told him about my experience on the bus, and he laughed and told me that, on his way to Zombie Walk, one of the Metro drivers kicked him off the bus, even though (he said) the passengers loved his look. When I asked what the deal is with Zombie Walk, he was a bit nebulous—apparently it’s something of an “underground” phenomenon (he said without a trace of irony), and in Buffalo was meant to make a statement about eating meat.
That sounded cool to me. Although, I had to admit that I was glad I had eaten my rib dinner from Gran Gran’s—slathered in red BBQ sauce—before seeing all his gore up close…

Written by RaChaCha

RaChaCha

RaChaCha is a Garbage Plate™ kid making his way in a Chicken Wing world. Since 2008, he's put over a hundred articles on here, and he asked us to be sure to thank you for reading. So, thank you for reading. You may also have seen his freelance byline in Artvoice, where he writes under the name his daddy gave him [Ed: Send me a check, and I might reveal what that is]. When he's not writing, RaChaCha is an urban planner, a rehabber of houses, and a community builder. He co-founded the Buffalo Mass Mob, and would love to see you at the next one. He represents Buffalo Young Preservationists on the Trico roundtable. If you try to demolish a historic building, he might have something to say about that. He is a proud AmeriCorps alum.

Things you may not know about RaChaCha (unless you read this before): "Ra Cha Cha" is a nickname of his hometown. (Didn't you know that? Do you live under a rock?) He's a political junkie (he once worked for the president of the Monroe County Legislature), but we don't really let him write about politics on here. He helped create a major greenway in the Genesee Valley, and worked on early planning for the Canalway Trail. He hopes you enjoy biking and hiking on those because that's what he put in all that work for. He was a ringleader of the legendary "Chill the Fill" campaign to save Rochester's old downtown subway tunnel. In fact, he comes from a long line of troublemakers. An ancestor fought at Bunker Hill, and a relative led the Bear Flag Revolt in California. We advise you to remember this before messing with him in the comments. He worked on planning the Rochester ARTWalk, and thinks Buffalo should have one of those, too (write your congressman).

You can also find RaChaCha (all too often, we frequently nag him) on the Twitters at @HeyRaChaCha. Which is what some people here yell when they see him on the street. You know who you are.

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