Thursday, February 28, 2008

Zombie Nightmares

Last night marked the 6th zombie nightmare I've had since finishing Max Brooks' World War Z: The Oral History of the Zombie War.

During the course of reading the book I had three nightmares all involving zombies taking over the world and me (and sometimes my friends) running from them. I finished the book sometime in December and since then I've had three additional dreams involving the same thing: Zombies, killing and survival. The most bizarre and probably macabre element of these dreams is that the zombies are increasingly getting harder to kill.

In my first and second zombie dreams killing the walking dead was simple, clean and easy (and even somewhat fun!) All it took was a mildly powerful blow to their head to decapitate them. Their flesh was soft and it was like throwing a spear through Jello. Of course, decapitation wasn't enough since you have to destroy the brain, but their skulls crushed easily under the stomp of my sneakers or boots. Done.

In my third dream, not only were there more zombies but their skin became harder to puncture. I remember during this dream kicking a zombie in the head and it not snapping off like it had in the other dreams. A streak of fear ran down my dream-spine and I realized then that they're getting stronger. This time it took 3 to 4 blows to the head (and possibly a round house kick) to snap their head off. This all happened in the East Village on 10th street but it was also like a desert too (kind of?)

My fourth dream is the one I remember most clearly and also sticks in my head as being the most graphic. I remember coming upon a female zombie who I tried smacking a few times with a lead pipe and nothing happened. I did however break enough of her bones to prevent her from walking and she became a "crawler" (in World War Z- zombies who only had half bodies were called crawlers.) From that point on I stood on her back while I grabbed her forehead from behind and, with a great deal of strength, proceeded to rip her head off. Unfortunately her spine came with it and her bones ripped from her flesh like two pieces of velco being separated. I remember this dream mostly because I could actually feel ripping this zombie woman apart. I felt the roughness of bone and the way it tore from her flesh. Needless to say I woke up with shudders and I have thought about it ever since.

My fifth dream was mostly about running. It was as if I accepted the fact that we, as a civilization, were lost within a zombie apocolypse and from this point on it was all about running. I don't remember killing any zombies but I do remember trying to run to the Hudson River for some reason.

Last night's dream, my 6th, was horrific and disturbing but for different reasons. I was in a military occupied safe zone where survivors were to go for shelter and medical needs. There was a rigorous screening process where medical examiners asked us to strip down and looked at our bodies for bite marks and other signs of infection. There was a person a few people ahead of me who happened to be hiding a bite mark, and right there, got a harpoon-weapon of sorts to the skull. No if, ands or buts! I was clear, and I knew I was, but I remember seeing my clothes in a pile on the floor and telling myself "whatever you do, do not lose your jeans or your sneakers." I quickly picked them up and at that moment lights started to fall from the ceiling and everything went black. I heard screaming and threw on my jeans and sneakers and picked up the first hard-hitting blunt object I could find (go figure- another lead pipe) and ran.

I ended up at another "safe house" but this one didn't seemed to be occupied by the government or military. It was more of a vigilante safe house and the doors were guarded by thug-looking older guys with machine guns. They asked me where I came from and I told them the "safe zone" which was under attack. They ushered me in quickly and quietly. I found a picnic table to sit at and two gentlemen approached me. They said, "hold on to your weapon, guy. The zombies might be out there but we've got our own animals in here. People have been known to get stabbed and even killed so just watch your back. We're all turning on each other." I understood what they meant and swiveled around on the picnic table so I could get a better look at my surroundings and grabbed my lead pipe tightly- just in time for.... alarm to go off.

Anyone know of a good shrink?

Annnnnyway, go to the Official World War Z website and take the survey to calculate your chances of survival.

And also check out the new trailer for George Romero's, the Super Granddaddy of Zombie films, newest release Diary of the Dead.


Anonymous said...

if only we could film your dreams!

Anonymous said...

why do human beings read stories which trigger nightmares ?
your emotions must be very happy that you go to all that trouble just to stimulate them.
no offense i do like your blog but it's funny though how horror stories generate horror stories inside one's mind and that, it seems to enjoy them.

Guy Déom Québec City

David said...

You're even butch in your dreams? Jeez Louise.

"Ach, zombies!"

Anonymous said...

Gee, sounds like a typical weekend in Toronto's gayborhood.

Greg said...

Such vivid dreams. You should create a short story cycle around them; I think they'd sell.

John said...

Hey, I read that book recently and have had two nightmares about zombies: One I was trying to get to my sister in Oklahoma but couldn't get over the Rockies and had to leave her behind as I headed up to Canada. And the other I was trapped in a high rise in downtown Portland surrounded by Zach's. Great book and very realistic. My favorite chapter was the pilot was got sucked out her plane and had to survive for a few days on her own (or did she?). Great read and it's been optioned by Brad Pitt's production studio.

Princess Sparkle Pony said...

A late comment which you'll probably never see, but didn't you love that book? It's getting made into a movie, yay, although it would probably be better as a TV series, IMO.

Anonymous said...

Ok, I know some of you have freaked out after reading that book, and though I question the weight of the "research" I will tell you that for 2 years now, I have been having nightmares about zombies. It just started one night, for no real reason, by that I mean it wasn't like I was ever afraid of zombies when I was a kid or saw a movie or something like that. And mind you, I am a reporter in Upstate NY, so it's my job to be level headed, but these dreams occur 4 to 6 times a week. Trust me, it starts to freak you out. So over the last few months, they have gotten much more violent, and I even got a date in a dream once. November 6, 2008. Don't ask me why that's relevant, but in the dream, that's when it all started. I'm not saying it's going to happen or anything, I'm just saying it's really weird.

Anonymous said...

Dreams are so cool and mysterious, Im having recurrent dreams about a demon who is I think or a felted on the dream trying to kill me, but the most wear of all the dreams was myself ready to buy viagra, who dreams about pills???