Friday, September 01, 2006

A Stoner in the Zombie House

There are dreams I tend to hold on to for longer than others, like I'm trying to figure out where they fit in. Is it some question I need to answer, some inner demon I need to face? Was it only a small part of a larger dream, and if so was it something in the rest of the dream that was important? Sometimes I'll remember and the dream will politely leave my memory, but the best ones eventually demand to be put somewhere. This next one became the back-story for a character in a screenplay I've been slowly (make that s-l-o-w-l-y) writing. In fact it's one of the reasons I've let the story grow so slowly. Almost every scene in the screenplay has it's source in some completely obscure event that either happened or I imagined separately. They're the things you can't write intentionally when trying to get from point A to point B. In this case it was 'guy number 3' who became 'Zeno' because I couldn't get this out of my head until I found its home. This is closer to the dream that it came from than what it will be when it makes its way on to the screen. In the film it's a flashback that explains what got Zeno to stop doing drugs.

"A Stoner in the Zombie House"

The street is almost empty and darkness has just arrived though it's not a natural darkness, it's the kind that's still just as bright as day where you are but everything around you is clouded in shadow. Almost like a fog of night but without any actual fog to explain it. In fact a little fog would actually make it a little less creepy. The sole person on the street is staggering towards a large two story yellow house. His eyes are red and his face is drawn in concentration as he focuses on every step he takes.
" was this third that seemed the least effective yet required the greatest effort."

He's been through this before and has come up with several ways to compensate for the misbalance he is experiencing. The first is always to carry valuable things in the inner pocket of his jacket while walking, (things like his whisky bottle or his large stash of drugs) as a precaution against falling. He knows it won't stop him from falling but they stand a better chance of surviving the fall in there. The second is to always have a large cloud of smoke around you, this way if you start to fall people will have already left you a cushion of space so you don't have to worry about bumping into others, causing them to punch you in the face, and thus knocking you down. The third apparently involves taking very slow steps but moving your arms as though you were walking at a normal pace, it was this third that seemed the least effective yet required the greatest effort.

When he finally arrives at the porch of the house he pauses to refresh his breath and reinforce his smoke shield, after all you never know what to expect at one these parties, not being invited and all. A close look at his eyes suggests that he's pondering something, possibly that this is a really nice house for a party, perhaps too nice a house for him. After a few seconds he squints his eyes and raises his brow as it hits him. Promptly he dips a hand back into his pocket and after a few minutes has fashioned several large 'providers of smoke-screen' which he ignites and takes a deep breath off of as he prepares to open the door. He's never been to a college party that couldn't get past a person being of a lower class if they also happened to be providing a needed service.

He throws the door open as he exhales creating a comically large puff of smoke that seems to fill the room and is greeted by a large communal roar "Ajjuuuuuhhhk!!" In the midst of the confusion he starts shoving his hand made invitations into people mouths as he makes his way towards a comfortable looking chair (surprisingly empty.) He theorizes that if he can make it to the chair they won't be able to kick him out. His fears are put to rest when he realizes that they are still cheering for him "Mrraaaaghhh, Huff hhu, mrrr!" Must be some fraternity motto or something so he responds in kind "Mrag! Huf! Schmrrr!" and sits down.
"Red at night sailors delight, Red and Blue, run for it foo'!"

Now that he no longer has to focus so much energy on his balance he's free to take the room and the party in. As he does so he realizes that this must be a costume party and certainly an upper class one the way that everyone is all dressed up for it. My god, they must have hired a whole make up studio to do their faces. He began to laugh as he realized they looked worse than him. No wonder they let him in, people have often said he 'looks like death warmed over.'

They didn't take much notice to him, or each other for that matter, which he felt was for the best since he wasn't really looking forward to sharing much more. Although no one seemed to ask for anymore they seemed to be crowding around him quite a bit as he built a safe cushion of smoke around himself. Often they were close enough that he could see that they had actually gone so far as to place animated maggots on their clothes. 'Fucking rich people, always gotta' go the extra mile for their stupid parties!" he said, but by now he had a very dense cloud about him and it came out more like "Fufpprff gog ppapppappp!" This in turn prompted a quick response from the crowd "MrrrmmrrrrGGGhh!!!" So as an apology he set up another round on him for his friends before passing out briefly.

When he awoke his cloud was gone and it seemed that the partygoers were looking at him in a way that made him feel rather uncomfortable so he immediately set about rebuilding the status quo. About the time he felt the cloud had reached a decent thickness rays of light began pouring in through the window. At first he thought it might be the sun rising but then he remembered that old saying "Red at night sailors delight, Red and Blue, run for it foo'!"

Suddenly, the door came down, guns began to fire, and the partygoers started to drop. It was definitely time to go, so he started to run as fast as he could, but unfortunately he had forgotten to stand up first and if walking looked odd before running looked even stranger now. It was like he had completely forgotten how to actually run. He was moving his feet and legs in the air as quickly as he could, up and down, to and fro, whatever way he could as fast as he could. Another shot rang out and the dream ended abruptly.

For legal purposes I must point out that getting Zombies stoned is no guarantee of survival in a situation like this.

Your best bets if you find yourself in an undead incident are shotguns, chainsaws, and axes. A sofa on fire can be used to ward them off but will ultimately bring more to the area.
In the version that's made it to the script he finds out that he was also shouting, "You'll never catch me you fucking pigs!" as he's running in the air, the police don't shoot him and he finally manages a successful rehabilitation. Only problem is he's done so many drugs by this point in his life that he still always seems a little high.

Usually I'm the star in my own dreams, I may not be playing myself in it but I'm at least one of the characters, when I'm not they tend to transpire like a movie with close ups and soundtracks (which is always weird) and generally bad special effects. They also tend to have real actors playing the parts, in this case when I originally had this dream the main character was being played by Jack Black. Sorry Jack, and I swear you kept your clothes on the entire time!