Store of the Living Dead
Zombies, we’ve been told recently, are this year’s vampires. “The Walking Dead” on AMC as well as a whole host of video games are helping to drive the zombie popularity wave in the media. But despite this attention, zombies remain an underclass in American society. All that cannibalistic behavior has a way of making the living uneasy around the living dead.
The Westlake Ace Hardware store in Lenexa, KS, seeing a market opportunity, set up its own Zombie Preparedness Center. According to the store’s website, “Zombie attacks can create a big mess inside and outside your home, and Westlake has all the supplies you need to handle zombie destruction of any kind.”
What Westlake apparently did not count on was the reaction of the zombie community. Hearing of the Preparedness Center, the living dead took to the picket line outside the hardware store. (News footage captured the scene.)
Westlake reacted swiftly and began promoting itself as an “Equal Zombortunity” retailer. With products including air fresheners and sealants, Westlake boasted it has all the products any zombie would need for bodily repairs and home maintenance. According to the store’s website, “Just because you’re rotting doesn’t mean your home has to smell like it. Westlake has all you need for home maintenance, so you can keep up with the living.”
The store’s response seems to have worked as the organization ZombiesUnite.org certified Westlake as zombie friendly business. The number of zombie shoppers has increased substantially since the announcement. “Clean up in aisle nine.”
- Zombie Preparedness Center – Westlake Ace Hardware
- Zombie News Report: Zombie Acceptance Certification – Westlake Ace Hardware
- The Walking Dead – AMC
Discussion Questions: What do you think of Westlake Ace Hardware’s approach to the zombie opportunity in home maintenance and repair?