Caught a re-run of the Daily Show last night. Dr. Tyson's conversation on zombies was fun, but it feels like he missed many chances to point out the crazy reality of zoology. The concept of zombies as depicted in movies is not totally far-fetched. There are a couple examples that show this.
One, of course, is the spread of rabies in mammals, raccoons in New England and foxes in Europe -- destroys brain and turns animals into stumbling, biting monsters to spread their infection.
Another I had experience with as a kid and learned about formally in Mr. Mildrum's zoology class as a freshman was Sacculina, which infects green crabs, steal's their bodies, sterlized them, and turns them into parasite factories.
Zoologists have found many more disturbing examples in ants, crickets, fish and other unfortunate beings. Just surf the web to find a few. And I heartily agree with Dr. Tyson's sentiment -- if you are bored, just look a little harder at the world. There's a lifetime of fascinating stuff in a back yard or a drop of pond water.