Thursday, June 2, 2011

No zombies

Conversation, immediately upon waking, semi-shouted down the hall to my son, past the noise of wild parrots and departing commuters, "I had an apocalypse dream last night."

"Were there zombies?"

"No, just weather. I was watching the apocalypse in Idaho with Val Kilmer."

"That would be a great name for a band...Watching the Apocalypse in Idaho With Val Kilmer."

Fireballs burst over the mountains, wire-thin lightning ran horizontally through the sky. Idaho was illuminated only by the storm. I was down to two bars on my cell phone.

---

The image of my mind and its information storage/retrieval system resembles old library card catalogs. But the drawers are metal, not golden oak, sized to fit small manilla coin envelopes. The gummed flaps on the sealed envelopes have become brittle, no longer closed. Their contents fly, in no apparent pattern, to the front desk and form stories. Or so it seems.

21 comments:

Vespersparrow said...

Terrific beginning to a short story--very funny. Your mind, or any of our minds, have developed and will develop again any kind of storage that works. I too long for those lovely oak library card catalogs, but alas they've all gone to the dumpster. So, at least my mind, is full of old shoe boxes, with dried up and snapped rubber bands laughingly holding them together; pockets of old coats; the back of the beyond in my junque drawer--it is frustrating that we can't retrieve on command, but we are not cocker spaniels, Marylinn, dear. We should just be very grateful that things will pop out of the ice-tray, the tool box, under the last clean towel on the shelf. Many interesting things are tucked away for a rainy day, but alas, the weather comes and goes and we have no idea what's up there. We just have to trust that something will drop down for retrieval--even if it can't be used for anything, perhaps it can be thrown away. It's like Fibber McGee's closet, M. It would all fall out and concuss you if you could get the bloody door open. Patience is all, my dear. xo

Erin in Morro Bay said...

I love the imagery of the card catalog and the coin envelopes! Of course, I would, organized librarian that I am!
Eein

Laoch of Chicago said...

Watching the apocalypse with Val Kilmer seems fine but I have to draw the line at Idaho.

Tess said...

This post was fun to read. I had to read it again so I could reimagine Val Kilmer in a lightning storm. In my imagination he took his shirt off to shelter me with. Ohhhhhhhh! Oops, I'm awake now. Sorry!!

Marylinn Kelly said...

Melissa - I do count among the blessings the revelations that arrive, sometimes when summoned, sometimes after a lull. The real name and not an invented one, window glimpses as from a fast car. What dreams remind me is that we don't even KNOW what is stored there or what it means, what it represents. Good thing that sort of mental housekeeping is not an option; I'd probably throw away the good stuff. xo

Marylinn Kelly said...

Erin - You were on my mind as I thought of those vanished drawers...what powerful sense memory they possess: the curved pulls on the front, the way the cards slid along the rod, how easily the drawers glided from the cabinet. Order has a great deal to recommend it.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Laoch - Alas, Idaho picked me and not the other way around. But as to viewing the apocalypse, do you imagine location will make much of a difference? May that remain a matter with which we need not concern ourselves.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Tess - Thank you. I'm sure he would be the supreme gentleman. No need to wake up yet.

Antares Cryptos said...

This was very funny.
Isn't it wonderful when we live with people who find the absurd perfectly normal?

Weather and zombiepocalypses, your subconscious is filling in the blanks. Although I'm not sure how Val Kilmer fits into the picture.

Strange, I've been looking for those well made oak drawers.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Antares Cryptos - Can you imagine living with someone who does NOT find the absurd normal? Oh, wait. I have done that. Ah, no longer. I am not sure either how Val Kilmer fits into the picture...the random unconscious wheel of chance.

Those drawers would simply be very handsome pieces of furniture, not to mention storage for so many things...I hope you find some.

grrl + dog said...

at least there were no zombies.

Apparently a zombie apocalypse is a very real fear
among small children.

for real...

Marylinn Kelly said...

Denise - No, no zombies. But I can understand the fear...the movie images are vivid, one's fate inescapable. I think they (creators of fiction) gave us zombies so we wouldn't think about the real possibilities.

Jayne said...

Well, if one must witness the apocalypse, not so bad to do so with Val Kilmer. Did you feel safe?
I miss those old library card catalogs, and love how you presented your own storage system here. I'm not sure if I even have one. I leave much to much uncategorized and un-filed. That's a bit of a problem. Often, the whole house is torn apart when I need to retrieve something. Think I need to work on that! ;)

Robert the Skeptic said...

I'm a bit perplexed about the attraction to Zombies - they seem to be everywhere in recent media. Even the Center for Disease Control (A government agency, no less) has issued health warnings about Zombies. I do not quite understand the attraction!

Stephen Page said...

apocalyptic dream? The first part makes a wonderful poem.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Jayne - I did not feel unsafe...it seemed a natural consequence...there had been an activity of adorning volcano-shaped cakes with gray frosting roses. (My years as cake decorator for Basin-Robins served me well.) You realize mine is an imaginary storage system; the real life version tends to piles and things stuffed into plastic bags. Timely retrieval is pure luck.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Robert - I asked my son about this, who explained the CDC used zombies and their popularity to lure people into reading the REAL information they wanted to share - preparing for emergencies. A spoonful of sugar...Not specifically a zombie fan but became acquainted with them early through a movie my mother (!) spoke of, "I Walked with a Zombie," 1943.

Marylinn Kelly said...

Stephen - As much of the dream as I remember is written down, in case I am ever able to turn it into poetry. Thank you for visiting and commenting.

Antares Cryptos said...

Marylinn, your son is right (of course), the day after the CDC posted it they had so many hits the site crashed.

As perceptive as you are, I think you already know what zombies represent. The mystery shall be revealed....

Bwuuhahahaha.;)

Marylinn Kelly said...

Dratted typos - BasKin-Robins. Hopefully my skewed shorthand is decipherable. xo

Marylinn Kelly said...

Antares-Cryptos - We love us our zombies - or are eager to learn how the CDC thinks we can protect ourselves from them. DO I know what they represent? Don't all such things come from fear? I have my slow days, you will not be surprised to learn.