The release of a bad movie with some curious political undertones has the the thinking public thinking again about that most serious of problems: the zombie menace. As any student of anti-zombie strategy knows, the most important thing is to quickly identify and eliminate infected members of your community. Therefore I feel compelled to warn Santa Barbara residents that our own Craig Smith may be a zombie.

The evidence comes in the form of today’s blog post, in which he appears to admit to having “died”:

When it comes to electronic gadgets and devices, I’m a little like Charlton Heston was when it came to his gun. The only way you are going to take my iPhone away from me is to, “pry it from my cold, dead hand.” The same goes for my iPad and my Nexus 7 tablet. However, despite my attachment to these gadgets, I think the time and energy spent by the FAA on repealing the rule that electronic devices need to be powered off and put away during take-off and landing is a bad idea. The rule as it stands (“if it has an on/off switch it needs to be off) is just fine.

Craig Smith will only stop using his iPhone when he is “dead”, but he has stopped using his phone when flying! The only possibility is that he goes into some sort of zombie fugue when boarding an airplane. What is most shocking about this revelation is the fact that he apparently recovers upon landing. Traditionally, zombies have been thought to be permanently undead. This is a disturbing development.

(Many of you will point out that Smith says he only dies when his phone is taken from his hands, not when it is turned off. True enough, but the implication is clear. It would be a gross non sequitur to make such a claim in the context of a discussion of the FAA’s rules for the use of electronics.)

A zombie on an airplane is a terrifying idea, for it allows the rapid spread of contagion. Warnings about public safety, therefore, sound pretty hollow coming from Smith:

If indeed, the most critical time on an airplane is during take-off and landing shouldn’t passengers be ready to be alerted to the possibility that an emergency is imminent? You shouldn’t be playing Angry Birds and be oblivious to the fact that everyone else is panicked because the bird you are flying on is going down.

But this clumsy attempt to deflect attention from his own disease only further highlights Smith’s affliction. No passenger could be so engrossed in a game to fail to notice that their plane is crashing; but Smith, being always zombified during flight, is not aware of this. Likewise he does not realize that electronic devices are allowed to be on during the majority of the flight, proclaiming that “if they ever allow passengers to talk on cell phones during the flight, I’ll be done with flying.”

Let’s hope Craig Smith does stop flying, for the good of us all. In particular, though, it may make the flight attendants more comfortable:

I remember a few years ago I was on a plane about to depart from JFK when a passenger was still gabbing on her cell phone even though the flight attendants were giving the safety instructions and the plane was taxiing down the runway. Apparently this passenger didn’t find the “Delta Girl” anywhere near as captivating as I do.