Sunday, December 18, 2011

700 Hoboes: Holden The Expert Dreamtwister Bothers The Rza

Holden The Expert Dreamtwister raced from the hobo camp, chased by a stick-wielding and enraged The Rza. "Take it easy, Rza! I didn't touch you or your stuff!"

"You know what you did, you dreamtwisting little sorcerer. I told you if you did it again I was gonna kill you - now you gonna die!"

"I didn't do it, this time! I swear! Back off, man."
Holden had done it this time. He felt bad for swearing that he hadn't. He was in no immediate danger, as The Rza was not built for extended foot pursuits, what with his ingrown foot, and all.

"Liar! One second, I'm on the beach at Fort Lauderdale, untying Elizabeth Banks' string bikini. Next thing I know, I'm being tried for high treason, and the judge is a six-headed hamster..."

"It's not my doing, Rza. You got weird dreams. Some kind of issues with y'all's subconscious, I bet."

"You go to hell, you evil wizard! I know it was you. My dreams never do that. I get the girl. Every time. You done twisted that dream and you know it. I mean, those six heads. What was that? Laraine Newman? Falcor? Dean Rusk? Jack Pardee? Wendie Jo Sperber? And Judge Judy - how nice. You're the one with issues, you dream-ruining freak of nature."

"Okay, okay, okay. I'm sorry. I twisted your dream. I heard you mumbling in your sleep about 'the back door' and I lost it. I can't help it. It's not like I do it on purpose. I really am kind of out-of-body when it happens." Holden stopped and held up his hands in surrender.

The Rza paused, but kept the stick raised, ready to do some serious braining at a moment's notice. "You got memory problems, bro. You already told me how you do it. You even told me why you do it. Last year, at the Hobo Christmas Sing-along, Rhea Perlman Lookalike Contest and Lint-swap? You got drunk on hobo wine and told a bunch of us all about it. About how you can't dream for yourself, so you mess up everyone else's dreams, on account of how you can't stand to see anyone have a good dream. You told us how you pitch your voice just so and talk all low and clear and gentle-yet-authoritative into the ear of some poor shlub who's at just the right stage of shuteye. About planting characters or settings or plot devices into whatever the guy is dreaming. Any of this ringing a bell?"

"No," Holden lied. "No it's not."

"Liar! You gave us a demonstration! You found that yard cop in Cumberland, asleep in his chair, and you went up and said all your hokus pokus in his ear, and he woke up thinking he was being buried alive in Betty Boop dolls by all the US Presidents of the 20th century as Stooges and Marx Brothers. When he regained his wits, he said he had been dreaming about Betty Grable and his mother's apple crisp. You goddamn told us, man! I'm sick of it. Leave my dreams alone! They are all that I have."

"I'm sorry, Rza. I won't let it happen again," he lied. "I promise."

Over the following two and a half years, The Rza's path and Holden The Expert Dreamtwister's did not again cross. When at last they did, at a small hobo encampment outside of Gary, Indiana, Holden once more succumbed to his dreamtwisting impulse, turned The Rza's nocturnal vision of boozy hotel saloons and chorus girls into some wretched nightmare involving pickles, a dental drill and Ovaltine, and promptly died of a crushed skull.

The Rza had resumed his slumber before Holden's body was cold.

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