Zombies Probably Aren't Real

If every time you closed your eyes, you ran the risk of having a nightmare or a dream--would you rather have thoughtless sleeps?

I woke up from a nightmare almost an hour ago and I don't want to go back to sleep even though I'm so tired. I only slept for a few hours the night before and I was looking forward to making up for that last night. Looks like it'll be another 4-hour-nighter for me...

It's dumb, I know. But the sun hasn't risen yet (it's only 5:30 AM here... even though we're a bit closer to the Equator, it's mid-winter... Damnit, where are you sun..?), so I'm still fearful and I actually don't feel silly at all.

All I can say is: I've seen too many zombie movies in the past year.

Too many meaning like, three. Or four.

This is why I don't watch scary movies at all-- let alone a specific genre of scary movies over and over again-- because when the lights go off, the antagonist of horror movie X instantly hides under my bed. Typical. Admittedly, antagonist Y has never managed to snatch my ankle. Or my arm. It has never managed to drag me to hell, eat me, or ask me to play medium and contact a still-living human with whom he/she wishes to settle some unfinished business. But still. It's... *shudders*... there.

Anyway, this time it's a zombie. I phoned Lendl. It's 7 AM PST after all, who over there isn't awake right now, right? Anyway. He picked up, thank God. I heard the line connect, a bit of rustling which told me that he was still in bed and he was fumbling around for his phone (which he probably fell asleep with after we hung up last night), a pause, and then "Good morning, baby!" in his usual I'm-a-morning-person-and-what-a-good-day-it-is voice. No, seriously. I don't know how he does it. It usually takes me about two cups of coffee just to get to the point where I can make eye contact with anyone and say "'sup".)

Anyway. He picked up the phone, that's the important part. All plans of faking through a casual conversation ("Hey! What's up? Had breakfast yet? What's on the agenda for today? OK well... have a good day, talk to you in a couple of hours!" ...yes, we are that kind of couple. And maybe we also tell each other what we ate for each meal. Hey. I'm not ashamed.) went out the window.

Which reminds me, my bed here is right up against a wall which has a window. As in, a zombie could easily break into the window and get me. Well, I guess I live on the second floor, so I don't know how a zombie would do that. I should keep that in mind next time.

So, back to the conversation. I managed to squeak out "I had a nightmare......." and trailed off with out saying much more. See, the thing is, this happens to me a lot, and Len always has the job of making me feel better. Always. He's never failed, although I think that's more out of his persistence than anything. My need for comfort can get pretty long-winded sometimes.

Silence at the other end of the line. Obviously he fell asleep. Obviously. I tried telling myself that he was really sleepy, that the silence was only a testament to this and that he was, in fact, sleeping. Despite such sensible arguments to myself, I kept thinking about how easily a zombie could break into his room with his flimsy, accordion-(albeit, fancy)style doors. And how Len was probably so sleepy that if a zombie were to come and get him, he'd probably get bitten and/or eaten without making a sound. I'd come back to the mainland and not even know that Len had become a zombie. Until it was too late, that is.

And then I heard it. Oh, God. One really loud snore right into the receiver of the phone.

Len has hit some pretty impressive decibels with his snoring. It doesn't uuuuuusually bother me too badly. I guess. I stayed on the line and tried to ground myself by the familiarity of his snoring. This is reality, I thought. Sleeping. Len's snoring. Reality. Zombies don't exist in Reality.

Another snore.

At this point, the snoring was starting to remind me of a sound a zombie might make. A really scary zombie. One just waiting to strike. So I hung up the phone (sorry, Len) and this time attempted to fall back asleep solo voce. I tried convincing myself that, scientifically, zombies aren't possible. They aren't. They aren't they aren't they aren't. Right?

Anyway, the zombie continued living (being dead?) under my bed, so I hopped out of bed with a distance further than a zombie's arm length and followed the light downstairs, where I figured my dad would be getting ready for work. The bright light in the living room didn't even bother me, despite the fact that my eyes had to adjust from-- I don't know -- the dead of night. Complete darkness. The type of darkness that zombies probably love.

Zombies can walk in the light, though, too, you know. At least, the ones in my nightmare can. So can the ones in Dawn of the Dead. I can't remember about the ones in 28 Days/Weeks/Months. I suppose the ones in I am Legend can only exist in darkness. OK, I'll try to remember that next time. Also, I'll have to go to sleep with the light on.

So the thing about Hawai'i is it's hot here. Damn. I wake up every morning absolutely parched. This morning, I felt particularly thirsty after all the screaming and running I had been doing. You know. In my dream. So I picked up a used glass that was already on the counter (I have a terrible habit of drinking a glass of water and then leaving the glass right next to the sink, not in it. I think it's because I always intend on drinking another glass of water before too long. In this case, "before too long" was 6 hours later), filled it with ice cubes and water from our nifty, new refrigerator that came with the house (we've never had a fridge that can do that before), and chugged. Refreshing. Then I put the empty glass next to the sink and loudly walked over to the living room, letting my slippers flop against the tile floor (we've never had a tile floor before either) because I figured that my dad didn't know that I was up and about and I didn't want to scare him and have him thinking that I was a zombie. Then I started thinking about the gun that he has registered to his name and wondered where he keeps that thing. You know, just in case I ever need to blast a zombie's head off (probably not possible with a handgun) or just in case he were were react and think I were a zombie. Yipes.

I let my slippers slap the tile floor and plopped onto the couch. I scrolled through my phone book and idly wondered if any PST folks are awake right now. And then I mentally scrolled through the list of folks in other time zones and weighed the odds of their being awake. Finally, I had the brilliant idea of going onto Gchat and praying for a soul to save me.

At this point, you've definitely been reading for a long while. I'd like to take this short intermission to warn you that this story isn't actually going anywhere. Or rather, you know how this story ends -- I get on the computer and log onto my blog to write an epic about how dark, creepy, and lonely the past couple of hours have been.

Anyway, David was online. Fiiiiinally. This time I try out the casual-conversation thing.

5:20 AM me: Heyyy
David: hey what's up
5:21 AM me: Are you about to leave for work
David: ya i'm about to shower and get ready...then i'll leave
5:23 AM me: Ohh. Mk then.

...I wanted to leave him alone at that point. Really, I did. And then I broke down.

5:23 AM me: I was just looking for someone to talk to bc i finally woke up from a nightmare and im too scared to go back to sleep
5:25 AM David: ohh well, i have a little bit of time

5:28 AM me: I dont wanna keep u... Can u pls just say something to convince me that zombies arent possible5:32 AM David: wow zombies? well, i'm pretty sure i've never seen a zombie in real life...
me: my dream was all scientific tho
it seems pretty possible
the starter zombies were more frankenstein monsters
David: hmm
5:34 AM well then it would take someone's active actions to do that?
5:35 AM like, someone would have to do a lot of work to make a zombie...they wouldn't just happen
5:36 AM me: mannnn the dream was so scary. i dreamt that even tho there were zombies out there, there weren't "that many" yet, so people were still trying to go about their lives
and there were personnel in hazmat suits everywhere
and everyone was suspicious of everyone because these zombies were hard to distinguish
5:37 AM so everyone was just walking really slow and jerky to pretend to be a zombie because these zombies couldn't smell humans from zombies

..at this point, I had a flashback from my dream. George Clooney played my father. Not the George Clooney from Ocean's Eleven (I wish), but the George Clooney from O Brother, Where Art Thou?. In my dream, my dad (George) went searching for a zombie which I claimed to break free from. This zombie had escaped the quarantine zombie zone and was now looking for fresh human flesh. George disappeared, but I could hear him from where I stood. Suddenly, he was bitten by little, tiny, adorable kitten-zombie. He started squeaking and giggling because he thought it was cute how the kitten-zombie left two pinprick-sized bites on his arm. It all would have been pretty funny, if it weren't for the fact that my dad had just gotten bit by a living dead creature. A long while passed, and then he became a zombie. Typical.

Anyway, I decided to leave that part of my dream out of my conversation with David.

5:38 AM David: there's a journal entry on this
5:39 AM people have done some thinking about this
5:40 AM basically talking about how consciousness is an essential part of phyical existence
and therefore zombies cannot exist

SWEET. This was exactly what I needed. I was torn between looking up material on how to defeat zombies and proof that zombies aren't possible, but I knew I could count on David to be scientific about this with me.

Granted, I don't trust a lot of psycho-analytical stuff (sorry cog-sci majors. Sorry psych majors. I'm a pompous, egotistical, over-confident chemist at heart. That is, if I had a heart. Which I don't, because I'm a chemist. I dig the neuro-chemical type of explanations and models though. So, don't worry. Ya'll are cool.). I need slightly more compelling proof that zombies aren't possible. So I thought up this list right now:

Zombies Probably Aren't Real
  1. They live in the dark, but they're the living dead, and why would the living dead have night vision?
  2. Zombies don't need to eat because they are already dead, so why do they eat people?
  3. They probably wouldn't be able to catch a person by running because zombies can't bend their knees.
  4. The Frankenstein monster starter-zombies in my dream wouldn't be able to create zombies out of more people by biting people. Frankenstein monsters are human-made. By guys named Frankenstein. Haha.
  5. If zombies were wandering about, I probably wouldn't go to the Commissary (the Navy version of Safeway.... or Vons (holler back, SoCal)) with my roommate and one of my high school best friends, like I did in my dream. And the Commissary probably wouldn't be guarded by men in haz-mat suits (like the ones in Breakout) because zombies are freakishly strong or... somehow otherwise unaffected by haz-mat suits.
  6. I still don't understand the difference between zombies eating people and zombies biting people to turn them into zombies.
  7. Why isn't a single zombie a "zomby"? That would help me to think of a singular zombie as something really cute and playful.

Well, I can't think of anything more to add to the list, so there you have it. We've reached the end, where I bid thanks and farewell to David seeing as how he has something real to do today, unlike the rest of us who could stay awake or go back to sleep without it making much difference in the world, and I choose to stay awake and blog about this to shake off my nightmare nerves. My nightcreeper creeps. My ghost-in-the-room goosebumps. And well. It worked.

So, good night.

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