Published on

Toaster's very very stupid dream.


[Editor's Note: The following is a piece I wrote waaaaay back in 2018 that I've touched up, edited, and tweaked so it reads a little better. Enjoy the chaos that's to follow! ~BallisticToaster]

So I had a weird dream last night. A funny dream.

It's not often that I have dreams that make me laugh, much less even remember them; the inner-workings of my subconscious conjure dreams so inane, existential, nightmarish, or all of the above that it makes the entertaining and coherent dreams I have stand out even more for having had them to begin with. Least of all because they're a change of pace from the mundanity of the persisting horrors.

I don't know what caused this particular dream but I have two theories: The first had to do with reading way too much about stuff regarding Proposition 22 and the other theory has to do with playing Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen right before falling asleep.

If you don't know what Dragon's Dogma is, it's a third person RPG developed by Capcom that plays like a cross between Dragon Age, Monster Hunter, and Dark Souls. It's actually a really fun time and you have access to these “pawns” that are AI controlled characters who help you gather loot and fight enemies in the game.

Well somehow pawns somehow found their way into the real world.

As taxi drivers.

I don't remember how I got to this point but I got into a heated argument with a few friends watching the news about pawns getting work and how they took their jobs but that maybe they'd need to unionize to protect their interests. Gotta be honest, I tuned out from listening to their rigorous debate after a while but it's reassuring to know that I'm somehow as obnoxiously political in my subconscious as I am in real life.

Suddenly, I had a feeling that I was gonna be late for something and confirmed my suspicions as soon as I looked at my watch; I had to go to the airport a couple hours before my flight was about to begin pre-boarding to make it past check-in and security. That way, I could have time to go relax, check out the duty free, & unwind before the flight to come.

I have no idea where I was going, when I booked the ticket, or why I had to go to begin with but it's nice to know I had inherited my dad's habits when it came to catching a flight:

Flight: departs at 10PM, Dads: We ride at dawn, bitches!

So my Uber shows up and the vacant stare of the driver tells me I'm dealing with a pawn. "Hell of a coincidence." I muttered to myself as I took my suitcase with me and sat in the back seat, taking some time to unwind from the intense conversation I had with my friends. I was going to the airport much earlier than I needed to be for my flight and there'd be even more time for me to unwind before my who-knows-how-many-hours flight ahead. What's the worst that could happen?

I immediately regretted asking myself that question once the pawn floored the gas pedal.

My stomach churned as the engine of the shitty-little-Honda-Civic-that-could roared into life and tore through traffic, watching in shock as the speedometer's hand reached 90 on a 40 road before swerving hard enough to have the right side of the vehicle lift off the ground only to get hit by an oncoming car driven by- what else?- another pawn, sending us careening past traffic and smashing through a hapless homeowner's fence rear-end first before completely obliterating the entire ground floor.

Bye-bye 65 inch TV, front-door, kitchen, and family pet.

Fresh from the world's most destructive detour and the most flagrant abuse of the laws of physics, the driver takes a hard left and continues driving at a speed fast enough to take us back in time only without the flux-capacitor. Much as I'd have loved to have gone back in time to before I got into this fucking car, I was in for Mr. Pawn's wild ride and had only now buckled my seatbelt properly. The joke was on me for thinking that a seatbelt would protect me from the pawn's lack of regard for the all-way stop sign as he hung a left at such a breakneck speed that the seatbelt snapped like a twig, flinging me to the left side of his car like a pinball with my suitcase smacking me across the face.

The door swings open behind me because of course it does, why wouldn't it? As I hung onto the door handle for dear life, my suitcase rolled out of the seat before I caught it with my free hand. Once the pawn straightened his wheels and slowed down to allow his passenger the gracious courtesy of getting back into the cab he ordered, the pawn immediately reaches 100 in a residential area before hanging a left and tearing past three red lights to pull a “Them duke boys are up to no good” jump across the overpass to a 'smooth' landing Into oncoming traffic before I could even use the last working seatbelt in the back of the car.

My pants were now a victim of the world's most intense colon cleanse and I wasn't even halfway to my destination.

The fender of the Death Honda comes into direct contact with a Volkswagen, causing it to spin out of control into a 16 wheeler that squashed the car like... well, a Beetle. As we drive for three more kilometers at 150 miles an hour, the police sirens around us grow louder as a symphony of destruction unfolds before my eyes. Perhaps having Ode to Joy playing out of this dude's speakers while all this was happening was a touch too on-the-nose, but apparently my subconscious is just a really damn good editor.

The sirens grew louder and louder until I felt a “WHAM!” from the back of the car. "OH GOOD!" I exclaimed sarcastically, imagining the scathing review I was drafting in my head despite sitting in what might as well have been the last taxi ride I'd have the "pleasure" of sitting in. Though if I were to give him the benefit of the doubt, at least he wasn't trying to start a conversation I wasn't feeling like having given the circumstances.

“We are arriving soon.” The pawn began to speak as he glared at me with cold dead eyes, his voice as vacant and emotionless as his face as he continued driving straight ahead. I noticed the airport looming larger in the distance out the corner of my eye and my heart sank as a sheepish grin spread across the pawn's face as the car began to swerve the longer he kept his eyes off the highway. Before I could shout at him to keep his eyes on the road, I felt a violent and sudden crash push my body forward as the police cars began to ram the taxi.

Then, in what felt like the longest five seconds on planet Earth, a police car t-boned the cab at a breakneck speed, causing the cab to spin out of control before straightening its wheels- however briefly- and getting rear-ended into a street-light, sending me flying out the windshield suitcase in hand with the momentum and velocity of a rocket ship with the last things I heard from the pawn being “THANKYougooddaaaaaaaay” courtesy of the Doppler effect.

Don't ask how that impact led to me careening out of my cab, to this day I'm at a loss for an explanation as to how the laws of physics were bent to allow for that outcome and I'm sure the world's leading scientists wouldn't be able to crack it either. (Least of all because that would mean they'd have nothing better to do than listen to me go on about this) Elton John was in my head as I flew 40 feet in the air, I was burning my fuse up there alone and it was gonna be a long long time before touchdown brings me around to find that - my flight's about to board?! When the hell did that happen- CRASH

I threw my arms in front of my face in a vain effort to protect myself from shooting through four panels of glass, past check in and security before crash landing in front of the boarding gate I needed to reach with my luggage intact, my pants thoroughly shat upon, and covered in broken glass. But hey, at least I had enough time to check out the duty free for a quick change.

At least, that was my last thought before I shot up out of bed in a cold sweat and rushed to the bathroom. I washed my face and looked at the mirror as I let out a bemused chuckle, uttering the first words of that day:

"Dude. What the fuck was that?"

This ends the way my day began; with enough coffee to keep a small village awake till next month.