people overlap   I am driving east on Platte Avenue. Dan, Gary and Matt are in the car. As I drive through the intersection of Platte and Institute, a car cuts me off, wavers between the two lanes before choosing one. I swereve, narrowly avoid hitting this other car, and lean on the horn for thirty seconds to make the driver of the other car aware of my irritation. I am thinking about getting my drivers' license renewed.

The honking of the horn wakes Matt, who was sleeping in the back seat. He looks at Gary, who is now suddenly Karl, and asks 'Who are you?'

We near the turn-off to go to Ellicot, and the intersection, once barren and dusty, is now lush and green. Instead of one road orr two the right, there are two: a dirt rut in the grass and a paved narrow road. Matt says something about always taking the wrong road. I turn on to the paved one and drive a short way before pulling on to the shoulder. We all get out of the car. I was expecting there to be a huge empty field to our right, but instead there is a large lake lined with tall, bent, wide green grasses. I run down the embankment, toward the water. I am barefoot. The others follow.

I splash through a little bit of water. There are gargantuan fir trees towering around the lake. Beneath their canopies the ground is covered with a foot of slushy snow.

'Snow!' I exclaim, and make a snowball. Turning around to throw it at someone, I see Megan packing a snowball and I toss it at her. It strikes her left arm, doesn't break apart, and falls to the ground. She doesn't notice, and launches her snowball at Karl/Gary. Daniel is nowhere to be seen. As I'm making another snowball, I hear Matt exclaim 'There's a snake!' A dark red, black and white snake is dropping down from a higher branch in the tree. Matt picks it up near the head and chases me around with it. He tears off the head, throws the body away and fligs the head at me.

I run away, thinking 'I hope it regenerates,' and feeling really bad for the snake. All of the snow is gone now, and as I run I keep dislodging nests of rodents in the dusty ground with my steps. We reach the car and pile in.

There is a gatehouse at the intersection now. I have to go in for some reason. Matt accompanies me. There are two people sitting at desks. They ask Matt some questions and ignore me. They want him to stay for some reason. He keeps looking at me as if for help, but I say nothing and stand by the door, waiting. The woman at one of the desks stands, slings a full bucket of water at Matt, and he promptly turns into a little white mouse. I look at him on the ground, and turn and leave.

Outside, the car is gone. A cold wind ruffles the grasses around me. A TV guide blows past my feet. I pick it up, and open it to a page that reads:

p. 118: Kristen Shorthouse writes a letter to ______ explaining why she finds her to be the most beautiful woman in the world.

Now I'm in a room with wooden walls, a huge bed with black satin sheets and an enormous window looking out on a mountain. Someone is in the bed pretending to be asleep. I am supposed to protect them from something. Two men come in the room, act as though I'm not there, and tie the person's hands and feet to the bed. One of them takes something from his/her pocket. They look at me then leave. The person in the bed just stares. (2002-01-06)
posted by yzzordorex on 2002-01-06
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