Sunday, August 1, 2010


I see myself in a world in the past.

It's a birthday party for my best friend at another friend's house. He has a pool. We all swim in it, except for me. I didn't bring my swimsuit, and I just got out of surgery. I can't swim in bacteria-infested pool water. You would think that I would be home resting after heart surgery, but I feel fine. I want to go to my friend's house. Besides, I had been hospitalized for weeks. I want to be somewhere.

There's music blasting out of an old radio. Some of it's good. Some of it's crappy new age stuff. Some of the new age stuff is danceable to. But I don't dance, because I'd be the only one with goofy moves.

Later, a couple of my friends go into a sort of laundry room type building and come out minutes later with a cupful of kool-aid. The birthday girl fills little red dixie cups and passes them out to people in the pool. They all pass around the cups, some cringing.

I can't believe my eyes. I want to go home. They're not twenty-one yet, not a one of them. I see one of my classmates sipping from the cup. I'm sure he'll get expelled.

I can't stand it and decide to go inside. The AC is broken but it's survivable in the living room, where a ton of fans are blowing air around. I sit and wait. The dogs who live here visit me every so often. I think they can feel my anguish. I lay down and go to sleep. Nobody bothers me, except for the dogs who come and sniff. I wonder if they think I'm dead.

I wake up later. I don't know how long I was sleeping or what time it is. Bleary-eyed, groggy, and a bit delirious, I walk to the backdoor. Someone comlplains that there's red liquid on the floor.

"Maybe I peed there," I said.

"Then it would be yellow."

"Maybe it's my red pee."

They stare at me as if I'm growing tails out of my eyes. "Okay, first of all, that's just gross, secondly..." I don't remember what was said after that. I turn around. Another one of my best friends came in, toting people I don't know but they are friends.

"Hi, honey, how was work?" I said.

"Good, good."

More antics around the pool. I don't feel like participating. I hang out in the living room. A friend comes in and turns the TV on. We watch Family Guy. There was a part when Peter denies the handicapped access to his food and he ends up handicapped himself "for forty-five minutes" and apologizes. If you think about it, he's already handicapped because he's retarded, I think to myself.

Later, more friends and non-friends gather at the door. They want to go walking around the neighborhood, like going to the park. I want to get out of this house and do something fun that doesn't involve water, so I'm like, "I wanna go too!"

But my friends are all standing around, speaking in low voices. I hate that. "Why do you have to speak in small voices? What is so secretive that we can't tell anyone else?" I tell them. I'm so fucking sick of it I want to puke. My best friend pulls me aside. The moment of truth.

"We're going to go out smoking, okay? Guys, just stay here, okay?"

NO, NOT OKAY, I want to say, but I just fold my arms, look away and sigh, obviously unhappy. It's dark in this room. The only light comes from the TV. I see it casting dark shadows on his face. He's pleading me. Why can't I say no to him?

"Fine," I tell him, but I really want to say, "No, don't go! Please! Stay with me! Watch movies with me! Forget about getting high!" I consider getting on my knees while pleading. But I just watch them all walk away down the street, anguished. Tears form in my eyes and I wonder when we suddenly became part of the norm.

Didn't we pride ourselves on being different from other people? Isn't that why we listened to oldies instead of that Miley Cyrus bullshit? Isn't that why we dressed like we just didn't give a flying fuck? I watch them walk away and become the people they never wanted to be. I go inside and watch I Love You, Beth Cooper.

It kind of reflects my feelings at the time. They're not who I thought they were. I thought they were unique--one of a kind people who were like diamonds in a haystack. I didn't want haystalk people for friends. I want the needles that are hard to find. I'm in the room with those people--three others out of the twelve or so that used to be here. A few others left before they went out smoking, so only five or so are those people that I wish I could keep with me.

After a few minutes, the door opens and in walks those who walked out on us. They avoid us. I go to the kitchen to see the birthday girl picking at the remains of the birthday cake. She looks like hell.

"What's wrong?" I ask.

She doesn't answer. I wait. She pushes past me and goes to the backyard, where all the others on the walk have gathered.

I go back to the living room and I want to cry. Is she so messed up that she doesn't recognise me? Above me, the fan light flickers. It's positioned in such a way that the light hits the fan and flickers like a nightmare light setting. I tell my friend so. He agrees that it does look a little creepy.

Later, the birthday girl comes in and sits on a chair behind one of the couches. The look on her face is unreadable, but she still looks like she was dragged by the hair through hell and back. Soon, my mother calls me and says that its time to go home, and she's outside in the driveway. Before I go, I give everyone I know a hug because I know I won't be seeing them for a long time--they're all going to college, and I'm staying behind in high school.

The birthday girl won't let go. She's crying. "I'm sorry guys..." she says, but I don't know why. I want to cry but if my mother saw the tears in my eyes, she would ask why and I would tell and nobody would ever be my friend ever again.

Only days later did she call me and tell me she was sorry because she felt like she had abandoned us on her birthday. Instead of saying "Oh, it's okay..." I said, "I accept your apology," because it wasn't okay. She and my other friends had abandoned us and just about broken my heart. Which is shit because I just got it fixed. Now I have to go in again.


  1. Perfect song to go to this story:

    Fever Dream by Iron and Wine.

  2. So, whoa!

    Why do you call this "An Imagined Dream"?

    Is this a fictional dream entry, like the character keeps a dream journal, like we do, or you just randomly titled it, or what?

    The party/drugs/alcohol/general scenery/feel reminds me of the book Go Ask Alice. That's not a bad thing :3

    I also think that this line's a bit odd: "Isn't that why we listened to oldies instead of that Miley Cyrus bullshit?" It made me wonder if what we consider "oldies" was ever considered new age crap. It made me wonder if, someday, what we consider to be new age is ever considered oldies/classic.

    I also thought that the narrator randomly waking up sort of passed-out on a couch was even MORE Go Ask Alice-like, going back to the Go Ask Alice thing, cuz, yeah, I'm jumpy like that. (And, sorry to always push books/music on you, but, omg, if you haven't read Go Ask Alice or any other Beatrice Sparks journal, DO IT!!!!)

    And, actually, I'm going to recommend something else---have you ever seen the movie Live Freaky Die Freaky? If not, it's soooo worth it! I bought it, timidly, at a Fry's Electronics or something, when I was like fifteen, dunno. I was scared the clerk wouldn't sell it to me cuz it said "INCLUDES PUPPET SEX" and was titled "unrated."

    In the end, though, after waiting like two years for it to come out!

    The movie's about Charles Manson (yeah, the murderer, ha). Billie Joe Armstrong from Green Day plays him, and it's got LOADS of other famous punk singers, like Mike Dirnt (also Green Day), Tre Cool (again, Green Day), Davey Havok (of AFI), Benji and Joel Madden (of Good Charlotte), Tim Armstrong (of Rancid), just sooo many!

    The movie is so inspirational!

    It's made in stop-motion clay animation, like The Nightmare Before Christmas. Basically, it's the story of a guy who's found the book Helter Skelter and who thinks Charles Manson is God, so he goes on a mission to murder everyone. It's gory and crazy and, okay, profane, but, again, totally worth it.

    And, uh, what was I talking about?

    Oh yeah, this line reminded me of Live Freaky Die Freaky: "Above me, the fan light flickers. It's positioned in such a way that the light hits the fan and flickers like a nightmare light setting." Cuz, in Live Freaky Die Freaky, there's a few (or at least one) scene like that, with a creepy fan.

    I also thought that the departure/birthday scene at the end was poetic/deep and seemed like a real dream.

    Oh yeah, AND, I have a ton of Iron and Wine songs but I feel like I never listen to them, so I have no idea what that song sounds like. When I get home Imma listen to it :D

  3. Well, this story is based on an actual experience I had. I changed some things around (like the surgery, I got toe surgery but not heart surgery, so I thought heart surgery would add a more artistic splash to the story), but for the most part it's real experience. I just put it in the story blog because I wanted to write this in story form. It was like a dream, almost, being there with all this happening around me.

    I've read Go Ask Alice and I felt so bad for this girl. Like, in the end, she says she'll be drug-free, but two weeks after that entry she dies of unknown causes and it's like, FUCK what the hell? She couldn't live a happy life?

    I haven't read any of those other books or movies, haven't heard of them, but I will look into it. 8D

    LISTEN TO IRON AND WINE. I'm kinda pissed that one of their songs made it on the Twilight soundtrack. They're too good to be wasted on a movie about sparkly vampires. >.< AND FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE, TOO. Too good for twilight, I swear. >.<

  4. Sorrrrry to overwhelm you with books, but you know what ELSE are totally cool drug-related books?

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, by Ken Kesey and The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, by Tom Wolfe. They (and Go Ask Alice) changed my writing style for a long time (and, who knows, maybe forever).

    The Electric Kool-Aid Acid test is nearly impossible to understand, but it's totally unique. It's just, random and out there, and you totally believe the characters are on acid. Everything about it's amazing.

    I also hate to sound like a loser, but I don't think I've ever heard anything by Florence and the Machine? D:

  5. I know you don't watch much TV, but one of Flo's songs is on a commercial for a TV show. I don't remember what it is--when I remember, I'll tell you. But the song is called The Dog Days Are Over. That song, Howl and Cosmic Love are the best songs on her whole Lungs album. I haven't heard any of her other ones, but... Kiss With A Fist is also noteworthy. 8D When you get the chance, listen to these songs first. In that order. xD

    I shall write them down and look them up the next time I go to a bookstore--I'm not much for drug-related books. I read a different one (I think it was called Crank) and it was about a mother writing about her daughter's drug experiences and I'm like, "You can't say shit for her. You don't know what the fuck she went through--keep your keyboard out of it."

  6. First of all, I want to say effff, my comp totally froze and exited out of my Internet program, as I was writing my comment, so here I go all over again *le sigh*

    I tried reading Crank once, and, no offense, but I thought it was total new age teeny crap, and quit, halfway through it. I also didn't much like Tweak (also drug-related), by Nick Schaffer, I think.

    And, yeah, okay, so One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest isn't TOTALLY drug-related, but I'm pretty sure druggies name drop Kesey a lot. Plus, it's a classic---it's legit, on Sparknotes (though, lately, they've been lowering their standards---in the past, I felt like anything on Sparknotes was TRULY classic =/)

    So, if you ever take the AP Lit test, you can totally write about it.

    (Something like it's "stereotypical" for all high school students to read One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest but Iiiii've never met anyone who likes it, let alone has read it.)

    Anyway! I listened to the Flo songs, and thought the first two ("The Dog Days Are Over" and "Howl") were definitely catchier than the third ("Cosmic Love"). "Kiss With a Fist" totally made me think of a jeans commercial, dunno why. I'm PRETTY sure, though, there's like a jeans commercial where a girl's walking down the street, and, um, is the ground cracking? Something like her boyfriend's above, in an apartment, maybe he's pulling on his jeans, dunno? Maybe I'm totally mixing commercials here and creating my own, ha.

    Lyrically, though, I liked Flo. I thought the songs definitely told a story; that bit reminded me of AFI, minus the gothic-ness. (Cuz, yeah, I feel like their songs, lyrically, are often artistic and tell full stories/poems. I've always envied lyrics like that---that read like poetry, like Rise Against's D: )

    I also don't know that "Fever Dream" particularly affected me---dunno, maybe I just wasn't in the mood to appreciate it, especially after hearing that last Flo song. Maybe if I listen to it again, or with a video (like of children suffering in Africa or dogs with missing eyes, asking for money), I'll appreciate it more :3