July 22, 2004

Tonight your dream will be directed by George Romero.

Posted by Arcane Gazebo at July 22, 2004 5:08 PM

The dream I had last night:

I step out of the puddlejumper at a tiny airport somewhere in central California. There's a small car rental operation nearby, and I hitch a ride into town from there with one of my fellow passengers. He drops me off at a large house, where a middle-age woman answers the door. She is the only one who lives here, but she rents out the rooms to visitors such as myself. I've already made the arrangements, so she shows me to my room upstairs. It's late in the afternoon.

As the sun goes down I settle in, unpack. But once night has fallen I hear a crash downstairs. I run down to find that the door has been smashed in, and a horde of shuffling zombies is pouring in. I know it's no good to run back upstairs, so I try to push past them and escape, but they overwhelm me...

...and I'm standing in the late afternoon sun on the front lawn of the house. After a moment's disorientation I realize that I have been reloaded from a save file, as if in a video game, back to the moment of my arrival. My first impulse is to warn the proprietress about the impending zombie attack, but I know I will not be taken seriously. Instead I enter the house and begin to search for weapons.

I end up with an axe found in the garage (not a Buffy-style battle-axe, but an axe for cutting wood), and a chef's knife from the kitchen. After a few practice swings I decide the axe works best in my left hand with the knife wielded in the right. This settled, I go to the front door to wait.

The door bursts open and I launch myself at the lead zombie, aiming an axe-blow for the head. But the zombie sways in an unexpected direction, and I bury the blade in its right shoulder. I pull on the handle to dislodge it, but it only draws the zombie onto me, pinning my right arm. The rest of the horde pushes through the door, surrounding me...


I need fire. I recall Nick's photos of a Super Soaker converted into a flamethrower, a bright tongue of flame sweeping out into the night. But no waterguns are to be found in the house. I settle for a canister of kerosene (left hand) and a butane lighter (right). This time when the zombie comes through the door I fling some oil onto the shambling corpse, thrust my right arm forward, and flick the lighter. It catches and the zombie goes up like a torch. It occurs to me in this instant that I am likely to burn the house down with such tactics, but I am not too troubled by this thought.

The other undead mostly shy away from the flames, but a few push through, and I give them the same treatment. It's working...

...the kerosene runs out. I'm backed into a corner now, with three or four zombies approaching. In desperation I reach out for a head, hoping to snap its neck...

This time, instead of reloading, I wake up.

A. Null interpretation - it's meaningless.
B. At night my subconscious sets up a GameCube in the inner recesses of my brain and plays Resident Evil. Badly.
C. The zombies represent my various responsibilities, obligations, and tasks that must be completed in the near future, and the dream is a reflection of my fears that these things will overwhelm me, and I won't be able to develop a strategy to deal with them.
D. The dream is a manifestation of my fear that if I allow myself to become too isolated and solitary, my humanity will fade away and I will become zombie-like.
E. Since central California is the solidly conservative area of the state, the dream is about my fear of Republicans.

Or supply your own. I will add that the previous night I dreamed I was a vampire. Might be too much Buffy (if that's possible).


Okay, so based on our conversation from a couple of days ago, I vote for D...

Speaking of dreaming about vampires, here's one for ya: Periodically I'll have this dream where I'm the slayer and I'll be battling and battling and battling and then at the end of the dream I find out that I am actually a vampire myself, sometimes the "head" vampire. Oooooh...

Posted by: Tracy | July 22, 2004 8:04 PM

B!! B!!!!!
Ah, Travis, the sole reason I read your blog is for your zombie wisdom, for it is seemingly infinite- Though I fail to see where the hidden pirate treasure factors in to this one.

Posted by: Vanessa | July 22, 2004 9:34 PM

I vote for B also, or maybe all of the above. That sort of dream is the kind I get when playing too much video games. ^^


Posted by: Zifnab | July 23, 2004 1:49 AM

I'm envisioning scenario B in greater detail:

ARCANE GAZEBO faces a group of shambling ZOMBIES. He fires a pistol again and again, futilely.

ARC.: Why... won't... you... DIE?

ZOMBIES overwhelm him, eating his flesh. Camera pulls back to reveal that this is happening on a TV screen, being watched by three guys on a couch. The words "Game Over" appear on the screen.

EGO: Dammit! The pistol sucks.
ID: Dude, let me try.
EGO: Fuck that. Remember last time? You got pissed off, hurled the controller at the wall?
SUPEREGO: Wave Birds aren't cheap, you know. [sotto voce] Spaz.

EGO selects a save file and loads it.

EGO: I should really save after the cutscene so we don't have to keep watching it.
ID: No way. The chick that owns the house is hot.
SUP.: Dude, she's like 45.
ID: Come on, you'd hit it. I haven't heard you voting to skip the cutscene.
SUP.: I just don't want to use another ink ribbon.
EGO: Maybe there's a shotgun.
ID: Try ripping up the floorboards. I bet there's one stashed down there.
SUP.: I know! It's a puzzle that requires a non-violent solution. Try to get the woman to safety before the zombies come.

ID snickers.

EGO: This isn't really that kind of game.
SUP.: I don't like this game. Let's play The Sims.
ID: Lame!
EGO: We play The Sims all the time. Sometimes you just gotta kill zombies.
ID: You'd be more convincing if you ever, you know, successfully killed a zombie.
EGO: I think I was on to something with the kerosene...

End credits roll.

ANNOUNCER: Next time, on Games of My Subconscious:

EGO: Sims again, eh? How's it going?
SUP.: Great! Look, they're having a party.
EGO: Wait, you're using that skin?
SUP.: I like that skin.
EGO: I'm just not sure it's healthy.
ID: Dude, that skin is hot.

Posted by: Arcane Gazebo | July 23, 2004 9:42 AM

You're definitely playing too many video games. Perhaps you should watch too much TV instead?

Posted by: Mason Porter | July 23, 2004 6:00 PM

God help it if you a) read too many books b) read too many blogs, because then your dreams get REALLY wacky. Or at least, mine have...

Posted by: Sarah | July 23, 2004 6:46 PM
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