In case you missed Part One, you can either scroll down the page, or if you are as lazy as I am and can’t even bear the scrolling for god’s sake, you can click here you useless so and so.
Let me tell you something else, soft-shell. This is going to be difficult for you to hear.
You’re not Daryl.
No matter how much you think you’re the Daryl of your friend group, you’re not Daryl.
Judith, the actual infant on The Walking Dead, has a better chance of surviving than you do. If someone gave you a crossbow, you would pick it up and be like, “How does this thing…where is the…how do you…” and then accidentally shoot yourself in the face with it immediately and you know it. I can practically hear the “Fwoop! AHHHHHHHHH!!!!” sound right now.
You know who you really are? You’re Carl’s backup hat. You’re not even the real hat. You’re the hat they use for far away stunt scenes. Know who you’re not? You’re not Daryl.
Maybe if you had spent more time being a degenerate growing up and less time on your “thesis” you’d have a leg up, but noooo. You decided that your late teens and early 20s would be better spent getting an education than being a dirtbag in the woods, albeit a dirtbag with a heart of gold.
That’s the thing, too. Everybody wants to be Daryl, but nobody wants to put in the prerequisite dirtbag work to get there. People are just like, “Oh, I have a feeling that I would be good at survivalism in the woods!” as they put a ramekin of artisan hummus into their smart-fridge and cozy up to a loved one on the chaise lounge they were finally able to track down from that Pinterest page.
You want to be Daryl? That means you have to spend your formative and adult years living in the gutter with MERLE. You can’t be Daryl unless you’ve done your Merle time. It’s just not possible. Just like you can’t hunt squirrels for dinner with a crossbow with such precision unless, prior to the zombie invasion, you actually had to hunt squirrels for dinner on a regular basis. No amount of present-day zombie fighting is going to magically transform your liberal arts degree into 35 years’ experience of living in abject poverty – with MERLE.
What I’m saying, is that I’m looking into the zombie apocalypse future, and you’re definitely drying your tears with a diploma from a small college in Vermont, while the actual dirtbag grown-ups are trying to pull a crossbow arrow out of your face.
Also, just throwing this out there, but growing up as a dirtbag does not typically lend itself to becoming Daryl – Merle experience or not. Daryl is an anomaly.
Daryl is, perhaps, the most anomalous character who has ever existed in the history of the world.
As a dirtbag myself, I knew many a potential Daryl in my youth. Poor, dirty boys shredding at a flattened roadkill raccoon with their pocket knives and then chasing each other around with the raccoon dick bone.
Stinky-assed moppets covered with impetigo, with globs of snot perpetually underneath each nostril like slimy, green Chiclets hanging out of their nose, who always, always had that weird white stuff in the corners of their mouths.
Boys who were left to fend for themselves because their parents could only ever be found either at the bar or in lock-up.
Boys who ate their own scabs, who when asked what they would wish for if they found a genie in a magic lamp, would take a moment to glance around and study the squalor they lived in and then definitively answer, “I wish I could kick Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan in the nuts.”
Had the Walking Dead been on television back then, every last one of those boys would have told anyone who would listen that they most certainly, most definitely, most absolutely were the Daryl of their friend group.
***Spoiler alert! ***
They all grew up to be MERLE.
Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion in Part Three…