Monday, November 11, 2013
Two men in beanies and parkas meet in my backyard near the Jacuzzi. One has come to avenge the mutilation of his beloved SNL cast member, and wields a large kitchen knife. Being a heavyset gentleman, he immediately gains the advantage over his enemy and drives the kitchen knife through his right eye socket. I see the eye become split in two like any lemon on a cutting board, with the viscera dry and gelatinous like congealed tomato paste, formed perfectly around the stainless steel wedge. The man is very much dead.
My sister and I are being confined by a demonic wraith to the inside of a decrepit building. I see her trying to escape the hallway, but an evil spirit pulls her back in, like a magnet. To my left, small demons with yellow skin scream at me with mouths agape. We have to get out of here, but I don't know the way. The wallpaper is green with yellow floral prints: Fleur-de-lises.
The villain has commandeered the god-like power source behind the compromised chocolate factory, and he has assumed the form of ether that flows through the walls. I bravely journey into the internals of the compound, arriving finally at a hallway filled with shallow water and lined with blue tiled walls. The end of the hallway has a semicircular window looking out upon a shadowy glade, and below it is a wall of gold bars with the word "chocolate" or "Charley" on them. All of a sudden, the gold melts into the form of a human head with the bald and blindfolded likeness of the villain: an obviously mocking demonstration of his newfound power. He insults me, challenging me to surpass his ubiquity and strength.
I don a pair of spectacles that enhance my senses, and images come to life that can only be seen with them. For example, the glade visible from the window now becomes filled with dead trees and mammalian bones, but not with the bleak greyness one would expect with such a scene. Rather, there is a psychedelic mix of greys, reds, yellows and violets that mix like metallic grain boundaries, speckled like some sort of harlequin poster print. I walk through the glade looking for my comrades, but I feel many have met unfortunate fates. I become upset by the victory of evil in this situation.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
I am on the Boston side of the Harvard Bridge and I am filled with heavenly joy to see Cambridge and the frozen Charles river. The sidewalk is covered with snow but I do not slip, and both cities are deserted. The trees have lingering brown leaves and the dome is much larger with a utopian-like grandeur amidst a crisp blue sky. I’m not bundled as much as I should be for this time of the year (apparently an early winter) but I do not feel cold the nearest bit. I’m walking by myself but I do not feel alone.
Halfway across the bridge I pass by a man wearing shorts and a t-shirt wielding a chain saw. I turn around and tell him to watch out with that weapon, although I say this jestfully and I do not feel fear. He nods in my direction laughing.
Although my roommates have went on their run together, I go on one of my own, passing by the Boston aquarium. I’m wearing my cold weather running outfit. Wow, this part of the city has become heavily gentrified and modernized, as far as I can tell at this time of night. A school bus is being loaded with students who visited the aquarium on a field trip.
Saturday, November 2, 2013
A blonde girl near the bar is wearing my red Patagonia jacket. It’s not entirely certain whether this is a Halloween party or not, but I interpret the girl’s gesture as a sign of romantic interest. She promises she’ll return it to me personally. I end up leaving the party without getting back to her although I know there is still a possibility of seeing her again. (I figured she probably went a university nearby.)
I find my old friend from high school and I tell her of the oracle hidden at the end of the street. We hop into a convertible Datsun immediately and she begins driving, albeit in the direction I didn’t intend for her to take. Our conversation seems limited to a dubious character in the neighborhood who she’s been having problems with (I barely pay attention). The road is very much like a bike path made of packed dirt, and I see a cheap bicycle chained to a post nearby.
In the rearview mirror, we notice a husky man-child wandering around aimlessly in this residential area. He senses our attention and begins speaking in tongues loudly while clomping towards our car. I see him smiling as we speed away.
Entering a wood-paneled living room, I see another girl wearing my red jacket but cannot distinguish whether she is the same person as before. She comes and hugs me, and tells me she’s been waiting all this time…
Saturday, October 26, 2013
On his departure to the Green Berets, there is a solemn slide show for my friend in the Harry Reid auditorium, displaying portraits from his childhood in an adorable scrapbook style. The slides become riveting as we enter his later years, and I make a boisterous comment with the least tasteful four letter words. His father rebukes me harshly. Not withstanding the intimidation of a man his size, I am sure he can kill me with his bear hands if he wanted to, given his skill set. “There is no cursing in this house!” I apologize in a cowering manner, although this barely rectifies the situation. I can’t fathom the childhood my buddy could have experienced, but he grew into a great person…
I am cooking dinner at the apartment with my small family. Having run out of pots and water, I resort to cooking the rice and soy sauce directly in the gallon of milk. (This is a plastic with a high melting temperature). I leave the stove for a while to cancel out the superfluous terms in the thermal expansion problem—or is the internal conversion probabilities? Why do they have the same symbol? The terms end up canceling but I forget that my approach was much different than the free-body approach suggested by the professor. Oh well.
The milk is starting to boil inside the jug. The soy sauce has formed a layer on top. I stop the flame and unscrew the cap of the jug. Boiling fluid begins to flow outward, but it doesn’t burn me. Wow, I have just wasted a ton of milk. I need to go buy some more so they can eat cereal.
Thursday, October 24, 2013
He is very cold from this swim and is now assuming a fetal position, an image unimaginable from his glory days in high school. On the verge of hypothermia, the bread crumbs from the rafters fall on his imploding body, with sharp bones poking out from a shrinking skin, while his classmates enjoy the Smart-&-Final barbecue products. No one is helping him dry. This is quite the alumni reunion!
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Saturday, September 28, 2013
Devoid of spectators, the Spanish bull-fighting arena is alive with the dense squalor and fecundity of the town’s horses. The colts are rampantly seeking to multiply in a natural, disgusting ritual that the gods of potency smile upon. From the pseudo-amorphous mass of beasts emerges a stampede of young calves covered in viscera yelling and screaming into the microcosm of the world they have been confined to.
A fly in a cubic room. Boltzmann’s constant.
Sunday, September 8, 2013
Confined to a wheelchair from my painful skin infection, I roll cantankerously on the sidewalk towards the McDonalds for a late night meal. I pass by a bunch of vagabonds congregated on the parking lot of the derelict auto parts store. They are happy despite their ungodly living environment and function like an emergent village in the urban squalor. However, I am not so happy, and yell at them to move out of my way on the sidewalk. They humbly comply without a word. Actually, I do interrupt their laughing conversations at all.
I haven’t gotten used to the wheelchair at all. I lose control and fall forward right out of it. My leg isn’t so much in pain and I realize I am able to walk. Picking up my items, I search for my wheelchair and cannot find it. Despite the unlikelihood that it could have been stolen in such a short amount of time, I frantically ask the gypsies for help. They are solemn is suggesting they did not see it and have no idea what happened to it. On the concrete I notice a large litter of bike lock parts, separated effortlessly with bolt cutters. Yup, there’s an ABUS brand lock; lucky me. For some reason, I do not think the gypsies are responsible—for anything. Despondent, I make my way to McDo.
I order a Big Mac and fries with a chicken sandwich on the side, which are almost immediately prepared and tied in a clear plastic bag: the kind you would find at a saltwater taffy store. Wait, they gave me a small loaf of bread instead of a chicken sandwich! Baffled, I complain, not sure if I should hand the loaf to the cashier or keep it as a consolation. The plump cashier takes it, however, and comes back with my sandwich, still maintaining the meth mouth smile she used to greet me when I walked in the door.
Assuming I have all my food ready, I leave. It is now daytime. As I near the bridge (like the one I biked under near the Marina, or the underpass on La Cadena beneath the freeway and railroad tracks) I see the gypsies again. They understand I have lost my chair and feel sorry, so they hand me a clear bag of hex nuts, which I tuck underneath my arm. They might be to keep my bike handlebars in place for the next time I ride.
I’m in line for a hotdog at the Alcatraz Tours base. The predominately Asian clientele squishes the line to uncomfortable tightness, at least for Western standards. Like grasshoppers fooled into claustrophobia with cotton swabs, the lines erupts into a frenzy of fist-fighting. I see Chaos, with his Aztec burial mask, cast the golden coins of discord into air.
Monday, September 2, 2013
The hospital emerged from the recreational sports center as the place where I ought to be, metaphysically. In my towel, I head for the locker room showers, but almost immediately get lost and have to navigate through random congregations of patient visitors and staff. I become very embarrassed but I am nonetheless determined to be clean. I eventually find an elevator button but the line to use it is roped-off and all the way to the right!
This area is essentially a re-design of the weight room but has failed to emulate a world-class medical center. Magically, I become dressed in a reddish checkered shirt tucked into brown slacks and I’m wearing a name tag, as if I’m at some conference. I’m also wearing a backpack. I see a few of the old trolls, who are busy with rush. I try to talk to them, but they seem reluctant to respond and a bit upset that I am not helping them. They are busy trying to meet up with freshmen, but such persons are hopelessly indistinguishable from the masses of people. In my shame, I want to help them but I can’t.
Sunday, September 1, 2013
the red-painted prefabricated office complex, sentenced to a long time
of meaningless bureaucracy, hash browns, and tater tots. They captured
me in the glowing acrylic forest, even though it was night and I had
found a great hiding spot in the hollow of a redwood.
Dressed in my shirt and tie from the Sears clearance rack, I have a
difficult time lifting a big box, which is not so much heavy as it is
awkward with my bicycle headlamp and several small fastening bolts lying
on top. My old friend Imadi is leading me to the group meeting as I
struggle escorting my property. I notice little cardboard cutouts of
xkcd characters on the ground. One has a walking stick figure and and
arrow in the opposite direction saying "life". I symbolically position
this figure near the entrance, with life assigned to the outside world.
Imadi has set up her presentation equipment in the modern glass-windowed
conference room, and is straightening a stack of papers on the desk.
After the meeting, my friend C and I find the secret back entrance to
our offices after noticing the inconspicuous card reader. We open the
door, which has a long-delay pneumatic dashpot to prevent slamming.
However, as we walk inside I notice a homeless man in my peripheral that
has taken this feature to his advantage and has snuck inside. I don't
think much about it, and neither does C. However, not five minutes later
I realize how foolish I was to leave my satchel, with wallet and all,
left unlocked and overt in my cubicle. I tell C. We find two men who
must be homeless (rags are not business casual) including the one from
earlier, and we start yelling at them to leave. They stare at us,
laughing defiantly. I fear my wallet is lodged hidden in one of the
men's coat pockets.
Suddenly, C gives chase to the intruders, wielding his collapsible
baton. I go as far as the door but stop. Noticing that I leave him
alone, C angrily gives up and walks back. Our personal information is
Saturday, August 31, 2013
Friday, August 30, 2013
Monday, August 19, 2013
I'm at a restaurant with an unseen friend. After a while, I go to the restroom and see the poor soul who's life has been characterized as the humble washroom attendant in all of the movies that give tawdry glimpses of luxury (according to the layman's perception). He gives me a stern look of concern as I make my way to the urinal.
Making my way back to the table, I see that my iPhone has been stripped of the secret material that maintains it's rigidity and it has now been bent, either by interaction with tabletop hardware at the luncheonette or general malice from an unknown enemy. I press the circle-square button and the screen does not turn on. Not surprised, I bend the screen slightly out of its horrific convexity and try again, this time successful. I make a call.
The living room of my friend's cottage is dark but I can make out the pink carpet and off-white furniture, which includes a love seat in front of bay windows that look out upon a street at night. I notice my artsy girlfriend in a still frame, wearing a rugby shirt fitted into blue jeans with strange circular glasses that are embraced by a post-modern haircut. She emerges from the shadows and hugs me. She's strange but I'm happy to be with her!
I see old cohorts at the nearby all-women's college. I introduce my girlfriend to the few of them without paying too much attention to them overall. Just a formality, you know. I'm so happy I'm finally at a party and can pay no mind to those coquettes. My other friends are busy preparing an artisan pizza in the oven, which is embedded into a wood-paneled wall. Ashes are visible coating nearby iron surfaces.
My girl and I are ecstatic at our reunion. We find someplace private and we kiss. However, to my shock, her lips elongate and turn into a vacuum, as if she has hybridized with some sort of bottom-feeding marine life. To say the least, her face becomes a lot less pretty and I don't know where to go anymore.
My friends and I arrive at the plane-sharing terminal at the airport to make our way back to our dimension. Because of our membership, we are allowed to evade all security stations. In my mind, I go through the list of items I should have brought with me. Everything is there save for the most important thing: my boarding pass. I become worried that I have failed abysmally and will be stuck in this dimension for a more prolonged time, which is not so bad as having to wait alone without all of your buddies.
Not to worry! We have rented the entire plane, so I find an arbitrary seat. The seats are more similar to those one would see at a conference rather than anything standard on even the most modern of airplanes. My friends are very young, as if I am still in elementary school and they're my teammates in Little League. J appears to be the only modern friend I have in the bunch. As the only competent pilot, he mans the plane's steering wheel and begins the takeoff procedure.
We fly through a snowy Bohemia of the mid 19th century, which has an epic expansiveness as if part of a powerful world empire. We narrowly miss enormous bell towers and spires and cannot distinguish the people in the streets. The fleeting images merge into a Van der Meer-like painting.
Saturday, August 17, 2013
A field trip for the high-schoolers is taking place at an ad-hoc theme park in a business district. They gather in a formerly vacant small business unit with tinted windows to wait for their chaperones. Unfortunately, there is a brigade of blood gypsies outside—all men—that intimidate them. Of the small lot, three in particular are Strang, Gilroy, and ChewChew. ChewChew has a shriek demonic voice and mouth covered in dripping blood, as he in fact has chewed off his own foot. His macabre progress has reached well above the ankle. He points at me and yells ferociously poems from hell, written by Satan himself. The other named nomads peddle products on the edge of the street, such as mushrooms and dry green tea.
I take a quick trip to the bathroom and not even ten minutes have elapsed until the gypsies have punished the students by locking them in the building using dark magic. I cannot see them through the menacing dark veil, but I can perhaps hear a few screams. I will not tolerate this! I walk pass the sitting group with the auto-cannibal and confront the peddlers. At first they feign a peace-loving guise, but I quickly realize that this is a ruse and either is capable of lethal attack. I give one a roundhouse kick and then another before stealing their idol and freeing my students.
We arrive at the theme park and many go on the water space ride. As I monitor them, I notice the interesting ride engineering involved.
There are two passages through which the water to this ride is filtered before being placed on the luge. This is to remove the revolting orange and black caked grease from the nearby industrial plant. I feel that the filtering chutes should be just big enough for a person to use, so somehow I end up getting a preview and ride on them with nothing but swim trunks. I realize the drops, widths and obstacles are way too inconvenient for a human to ride safely, with the drops not giving an inclined slope but an essentially concave free-fall. Nonetheless, I have the most fun during those disgusting grease runs than the actual ride.
I reach the end of the filtering stage at the point where the water enters the actual theme park attraction. All would be perfectly well if the exit did not contain two rotating gears that somehow miss crushing my head. Indeed, even in the exit pool, there is such a plethora of moving parts that the sounds of amazement around me coincide with the feeling of dread at being impaled by moving pistons. The whirlpool takes me around several times, putting my life at odds with gears, shafts and other engineered components. It’s very much reminiscent of Gadget’s Go-Coaster.
I do not remember exactly what the space ride is, and why it is so fun, but I do know that there is a kiddie version adjacent to it with the same character themes. At the end of my whirlpool death floating, I reach this area of the ride on a side I once again shouldn’t be in. I hop over rotating, fantastic animals—one being a seal snake and the other a bear unicorn—and head for the line exit, which is housed in a girly pink and purple garden with Victorian lawn furniture and exquisite stonework. On my way out, I see a very pretty white girl I supposedly met at a bar. She’s dressed in a fitted white blouse, blue jeans and black heeled shoes, and he blonde hair is out of this world. Before I can even interact with her, I am arrested by an illuminated card on the rim of the stone fountain. It has her face and an enchanted script that shows “single, dating, and just married” with the latter status highlighted. I see her husband, a blond man of large stature, come and embrace her. Being now completely without a person to talk to…seeing my CitySports t-shirt in the reflective door…looking again at the card that now says “expecting!”…I leave the ride exit and move to another attraction.
The next ride is actually a live demonstration of apartheid that make me feel very uneasy. I spot my fellow TA in the holding room, who waves to me. She has a look of foreboding that I have seen very few times in my life: one that has come to terms with the fate involved. To my left and above I barely espy three people that are supposed to represent important community political figures, sitting and looking forward like mindless machines. They are the judges in this event.
Three of my students are hood rats and I hear one of them planning to leave the group. “Hey foo, let’s ditch this shit. I know how to get home” says the kid I could have sworn I played baseball with freshman year. (The baseball pullover aided my assumption.) I start imagining the route they would take on the BART and CalTrain, which seemed extremely inefficient relative to our school bus. I lose track of them as I am led onto a bus by ride attendants, with no other people joining me.
The bus is like one of those used on the blue line on the final leg to Logan airport. I briefly see (as if at night) one middle-aged woman with a purse (looking at me endearingly) and the outline of the broad-shouldered driver on his way through the low clearance lanes to the terminals. However, once glance away and I sit not in the night but in the day, and we appear to be driving past a tree-lined area of a Palo Alto-like commercial center. There is a fat man sitting next to me with black plants and an olive green polo. His hair is yellow and he is looking at me with the creepiest smile I have ever seen. I vaguely remember either him or his brother at the line for the apartheid ride. I am trapped in the seat; I cannot move and the man is getting creepier and creepier. The bus drives by the Zion building, which has a bright green logo with an aleph. I feel hopeless.
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
The rabbit reminded me of my dog, when sleeping.
I go to back to my apartment. My friends are there and we’re planning on making a day trip to the aquarium. James offers to take me in his van.
On our way over, we decide to stop briefly for donuts at Ms. Donut in Cooley Ranch. For some reason, I have my bike and want to lock it up to a nearby rack. James gives me a look of concern. He checks my lock and cable and with a shake of his head denies their integrity at preventing theft. He insists that I put my bike in the back seat of his van. I have to remove the front wheel to do so; I feel very sad and inept that I have failed at finding adequate security for my new vehicle.
We reach the aquarium and enter the amphitheater for the nautical dance performance. Apparently, everyone except me is associated with the act, and very much like a flash mob, people begin to assemble to perform a crazy new dance called the “Whopple.” My friends take center stage. The dance involves a straddling motion of the hips, a swinging of bent arms, and a swaying of the head while the group as a whole moves in triangular and rhomboid formations. As I have become the sole audience member, the leader of the formation focuses on moving towards me. The leader is Pole, and he finishes the dance with a flamboyantly reaching arm, the final, high-pitched lyric and a crazed smile on his face.
I’m worried the van has been broken into and my new bike is a goner. I shouldn’t have brought it in the first place; what was I thinking? I just wanted to ride, you know…
Monday, August 12, 2013
The topology of this carnival ride only permits an exit from another dimension, with those failing to understand the inner workings of the machinery to be doomed to a Mobius strip of confused wandering. My sister and I fail to find meaning in the enveloping darkness. Luckily, the bald security guards, who look like amateur cage wrestlers, have pity on us and unhook the chain to let us out. I last notice the red and yellow carnival colors of the strange attraction before we depart; it is reminiscent of the Hurricane ride. I’m not sure if any other thrill-seekers are inside of it.
Mom and Dad are waiting for us in an SUV in the parking lot, which is enclosed by six-foot temporary fences. Through the links a barren field is visible and some brown foothills in the background. We hop into the back because the hatch is open, and our parents speed away to a restaurant without us closing it. From a gap in the fences I see my old friend from college emerge and run towards us, with such speed and concentration that she is able to gain on the vehicle.
My sister disappears. I realize my friend is running to satisfy a romance that never came to fruition years ago. In a fit of athletic ability, she lands in the back of the truck. We embrace as if we were a long lost couple.
Friday, August 9, 2013
I inspect the living room of our new apartment. There is a custom-made oven range in the shape of a scalene triangle with impressive yet wasteful flame power and a poor economy of space. The cold bay area weather has coaxed my roommates into turning on not only the ranges but the oven as well. (They must not have understood the outdated thermostat.) I turn ten dials to the “OFF” position.
Another poorly oriented counter to the right is piled with junk. The most noticeable item is a hybrid coffee maker-DVD player. Its circuit board has been pulled out from the case and left in a seemingly vulnerable position on the base of the contraption. The coffee-making mechanism is to the bottom and left of two optical drives. I assume the purpose of the optical drives is the programming of very particular preparations of espresso. The labeling, buttons, lights and overall appearance impart stylistic forms from the American seventies, which is a huge anachronism that I choose to ignore for my lack of an espresso machine!
I insert the circuit board back into the frame and snap the rightward optical drive back into place. The gears and drives within begin to buzz and certain LEDs start blinking. Coffee beans are then successfully brewed into a strong dark beverage collecting into a glass carafe, which has somehow survived the junk-status handling of the machine over the decades.
At the top of the mountain I reach the storied avocado sylvan. I am wearing my cheap hiking shoes and cargo shorts, but the climate indicates this is not very functional; the air is misty and clouds are visible down the steep cliffs below. The pinnacle I speak of is actually a dome-shaped rock with centimeter-wide cracks drawing uncertainty to its structural stability, and nevertheless reminding me of a sight I experienced on a hike into the Grand Canyon. It was clear that the end of the rock comprised a shear vertical drop into a calming misty abyss. I feel no fear at all, and the cold is soothing. About a foot-reach from this edge I am just able to espy a shrub growing outward from the face of the rock. Its foliage has the appearance of felt for arts and crafts, or perhaps even a soft lush consistency like that of boiled and pressed spinach. Very unlike a tree indigenous to Mesoamerica, and very much alien to these majestic heights. I cannot see a single fruit growing on the otherwise Sisyphean tree, so I crawl backwards and relax on the rock as the cloud slowly dance below.
Monday, July 29, 2013
I’m forced to travel as a vagabond with the recently sentenced Cleveland kidnapper, who still sports the balding head, grey beard and googlie eyes. Having been displaced, he is helping me find a new place to live, as an urban squatter. In fact, this might be Cambridge. We come across a small flat building with candy-red stucco and a long modern window running across the upper part of the exterior wall. Breaking in, I discover that the space is completely empty, as if freshly constructed, and a single wall partitions the floor into two areas. The kidnapper claims the room with the long window while I lay down in the other space, which has a larger square window looking out to a beige dumpster with spent fiberglass and other building materials.
It’s getting dark. I prepare my sleeping bag alongside my pack and mess kit. As I lay down, an unmistakable wraith flashes from the left across the window, at least enough for me to notice it. It sends a chill down my spine. There is definitely evil in this building. I open the door and ask the kidnapper if he can verify that it’s real. I catch him at a time when he is eating bright neon colored ramen and cabbage.
We both wait to witness it again. This time, the wraith has abandoned all modesty and has emerged in a fully formed quantum wave pattern. It may just be a gateway to hell. The kidnapper is very calm and just looks at it.
I am channeled to an attic-based sheet emporium. The walls are either dull grey or a bright white suffering from centuries of dust; a skylight illuminates the floor with the ugly yellow of a thunderstorm. All of the sheets have the same roof-tile red and they are mounted on random articles of what I presume is furniture. The curator, dressed in a grey suit and red tie, is giving me a tour. I tell him about my experiences with evil spirits, and he explains these sheets are unlike any other. With a smile and wave of a hand, the sheets become animated and rise into the air. They writhe in humanoid forms that evince the feeling of hellish suffering.
Sunday, June 30, 2013
The house behind us is the site of some unusual activity. There may be fires in the San Bernardino mountains, and as is usual with these occurrences, I am keeping an eye out for arsonists who take pleasure in spectating from these heights on the opposite side of the valley. I notice two men holding long rifles on the southern side of this neighbor’s house, peering northward over the edge. I can’t observe their identities due to the low light, but one is black and the other is Hispanic with a shaved head. They are wearing loose shorts and tanks with skater shoes.
One gives a signal; suddenly their garage door opens and Rambo-style paramilitaries flood into the street with mobile artillery. Immediately, fighter jets come zooming 60 meters overhead, although I don’t think they are strafing. I’m also not sure who the oppressed and the oppressor are in this situation.
I jump towards the curb and lay flat. I turn my head just enough to see that behind me a humvee has arrived. It fires its 50 caliber Gatling gun, spraying the entire street and wiping out the combatants quickly before they can mount an attack. The rounds are merciless towards innocents, and I’m very much a sizeable target lying on the ground. If hit, I’m liable to die from the horrific wound.
I feel something hit my leg, but I feel no pain. I look, and I see holes but no blood. There are fine glass shards filling the tiny dimples of the asphalt. There may be ashes from the wildfire as well in these miniscule recesses.