In the words of revered American dance teacher and FaceTune artist, Abby Lee Miller, “I feel like a whore.” Now I’m not really sure when she would have had the opportunity to say this phrase on Dance Moms, but its sentiment still rings true. Last week, I had a nightmare…A really bad one. The tormenting feelings brought on by my slumbering mind still haunt me days later.
Now I’m not one who often participates in the practice of
dreaming. When I’m asleep, I prefer my brain to be as empty as
my freshman year suite’s Brita on almost any given day; nevertheless, when I do hop aboard the dream machine, I usually only
remember small nuggets of what goes on within my resting imagination. But this dream was different—I remember it clear as day.
Now here’s the skinny of what went down: I was being relentlessly harassed, terrorized, and persecuted all at the hands of one
governmental institution: Burlington Parking Enforcement. Some
see this branch of our local government to be unassuming and
“fundamental to common traffic safety laws.” Well, I see them as
oppressors and tyrants.
So, the availability of street parking near
my apartment is, in a word, laughable. In my dream, however,
I got lucky and secured an optimal spot right out front, but I
should’ve known it was too good to be true. Get this: they gave
me an $800 parking ticket for doing literally nothing. You may
be thinking, “Patrick, you’re overreacting. It’s a dream…not that
deep.” Well, doubtful reader, let me just tell you what happens
next. After I paid said ticket for some reason, Burlington parking
agents towed my car. I was livid. I don’t know why I hadn’t woken
up in a cold sweat at this point. Now this part of the nightmare
is a little ridiculous because, after already defrauding me and stealing my vehicle, the vile organization sent me to the literal guillotine. Why a guillotine? I don’t really know but you get the point. Shit was bonkers.
Apart from a brief introduction to psychoanalysis in FTS 121, I don’t know shit about dreams or what the hell Freud was even talking about, but I
think I can trace the nightmare back to a singular event. On
a serene spring day last semester, I awoke to a $30 parking
ticket for being too lazy to move my car from a prime spot
outside L/L to the abysmal MAT lot. This ticket wouldn’t
have been much of a problem. Been there; done that. But
then…the double whammy hit. That same evening, I kid
you not, I got another ticket. FOR SIXTY FUCKING
DOLLARS!!! You see, in order to provide a sense of realism
to this article, the root of my nightmare appears to stem
from cold, bitter trauma. These days, I lie awake at night
paranoid that I parked my car just a tiny bit too close to
the no parking sign. Abby Lee would tell me to “suck it up,
buttercup,” but I don’t really want to. Oh well, I’ll survive.
But when those parking enforcement goons start giving out
$800 tickets, don’t say I didn’t warn you.