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31 January 2004 @ 02:09 pm
Zoombies  
"What's the bucket of dirt for?" I asked.

I was sweeping, because we had company coming. I have a 36" HD-compatible television, which is apparently the envy of my friends. One couple needed to watch "Terminator 3" for a science-fiction thing, so I was suddenly hosting a movie night.

While I was sweeping the dining room, I noticed a bucket with an inch or two of dirt in it. Not potting soil, nothing fancy, just garden-variety dirt. So to speak.

"Planting stuff," she answered vaguely.

"Oh." I don't get the whole "planting stuff" thing, even outdoors. But a bucket of reasonably clean dirt wasn't so bad. It's not as though we use the dining room for eating; it's actually just the room we stick everything that doesn't fit somewhere else. And ordinary dirt is certainly preferable to other things that might be in a bucket.

Such as the "compost bucket" in the back entryway. We're too lazy to take things out to the compost bin regularly even in the summer, much less during single-digit weather. So, instead, she's instituted a bucket that sits indoors, in the nice warmth, its contents putrefying and liquefying and ... anyway. So, dirt. For planting. "Okay."

Apparently I had a tone. "What?" she asked.

"Nothing. That just seemed anti-climactic." I had expected a slightly more complicated explanation, whether it was *what* she had planned to plant or it was some other, unexpected purpose. I had pretty much already worked out the "planting" thing myself.

"Well, what did you expect?" she asked. "That I'd bury tiny people in there?"

"That'd be kind of cool," I admitted. Okay, so we both have a fascination with forensics. What? Shut up.

For some reason the idea of burial reminded me of reviews I'd read at www.theyrecoming.com, so I added, "Then we could make them into zombies. Really tiny zombies."

"That would do what?" she asked. "Sweep the floor for you? Like a zombie Roomba?"

I've long since learned that I can't name things well. When I was a kid, I couldn't understand why my teammates utterly ignored my idea of naming our soccer team "Fireflies". I also know that I can't really make jokes well. I've been working on a new style of deadpan, a subtle sense of humor, but by default I'll disclaim my jokes and puns because I know they won't go over well.

I wasn't sure if it was too subtle or just dumb, but expecting it to fall flat, I said, "I guess we couldn't name them Zoombies."

After a few seconds she announced that she liked it, sounding quite pleased. She's decided that we need to stake our claim to this new consumer product, before somebody else beats us to it.

I fully admit I was surprised that she was impressed by the name I'd invented. After all, I was dealing with a woman who -- as she promptly reminded me -- proudly named another of her innovations the "Snow Shitter".

Hmm. Maybe I'm not as bad at naming as I thought I was.