The Infected

I had a most curious dream last night. Now before I get into the dream itself, I should warn you I don’t think I dream in the commonplace way. Most of the time my dreams are forgotten long before I ever wake up, and quite often the few I remember play out more like a movie or story than the strange and nonsensical jumble of images that a lot of my friends tell me their dreams are more like. I’m sure I’m not the only one who dreams in this fashion, but I thought it best to mention this first up so no one questions why my dream is so oddly coherent.

In my dream, I was a young man who was a waiter (yes, in my dreams I am as often someone else completely as I am myself) who worked in a gourmet café and had a massive crush on a girl who walks by every day at the same time each morning. Now as the dream continued it turned out this girl was a patient at a lab who would one day become known as patient zero for a zombie virus. It had a name of course, but as with most dreams the name faded away.

The girl avoided human contact as much as she could because while she didn’t know what was happening to her she had an inkling that there was something wrong inside of her, but I was apparently a quite persuasive gentleman and convinced her to date me.

One day however she touched a few of the patrons of my café while she was waiting for me to be off shift and take her on one of our early-on dates, and thus the infection began.

Now before you switch off and get bored of my ‘zombie movie’ dream let me advance the story just a touch further, skip the typical running and screaming and continued spread of the virus and even the hilarious little joke on my ability to close the doors to my café (I don’t know if any of you have ever tried to shut those concertina folding glass doors which have the small bolt which fixes into the ground to lock the door in place, but if you are not certain where the hole is, or some charming individual has put something in there, it is not very easy at all) and we will proceed to the part where I watch my slightly depressed but terribly cute girlfriend turn herself.

As she stalks toward me with blatantly violent intent, I attempt to talk her out of that course of action, as you often see people do when I loved one turns mindlessly blood-thirsty, and somehow my words make her happy and she turns back to a normal human!

Now we have finally reached the part of my dream that I am writing all this to lead you up to. The zombies are not in a constant state of madness, instead their brains are slowed down a little and emotions heightened, so if you can keep an infected person happy and satisfied, they are a perfectly normal human being, but if you can’t keep them happy they turn into a raging, violent and most importantly mindless monster.

Now for anyone who has worked in a service industry – retail, hospitality ect. – you’ve already started chuckling about the parallel my subconscious created there, but for those of you who have not the difficulty of dealing with customers daily, let me spell it out for you so you too can be amused.

Customers are very much like this. If they get what they want they are happy, no problem, but as soon as you can not pander to their every whim or satisfy them utterly, they can become like a creature from a horror movie and all you can do is try your hardest to make them happy again, but even if you end up placating them, they will never return to fully human.

I am aware of how vicious this sounds, but let me talk once more to the people who do not work in the same industry as I, most people are easily satisfied, they just want their wii remote, they pay for it, they leave, happy days. The other rare few customers however will want you to discount everything when it has already been discounted as low as you can go without selling it to them for less than the cost price, but God forbid you tell them that, they will only fly into a rage and insist that their friend bought one from here only just before Christmas for that price, so why can you not do it, oh! and that same friend also got an extra game as well, a brand new release one, hurry up and throw that in for free for me or I’ll take my business elsewhere!

See what I mean? Not everyone is like that, but there are those special few who expect the impossible and become unreasonable when you do not bend over backwards spine snappingly far, they are few and far between, but they exist and their numbers seem to be ever increasing.

Let us return to the dream world now so you can see how my dream ended. The world was promptly made aware of the way the infected were, but since they could continue to live a normal life the government saw no need to round them up and keep them separated from the general populace, instead everyone just had to work extra hard to not piss them off, so I was serving up plates of pink ice-cream with sprinkles to a table made up of a family of infected, but when the father infected saw a big melted marshmallow on someone elses plate he wanted one, so we had to make one from scratch because we were out of them, and of course we had to make it fast so as not to trigger him. Naturally because I was so frequently in contact with the infected, I would one day become one myself.

The sad part is, in real life it is very near true, dealing with these highly self-centered individuals is draining even when you can keep them happy – as you must do in the service industries – and when they get mad all you can do is stand there and take their abuse, because you are stuck between the rock of what you are permitted to do, be it by a head office, a owner-operator or simply keeping yourself in business, and the hard place of the customers expectations. Nothing makes a person more mad than being verbally abused and being unable to retaliate, so your pent up anger builds inside yourself and slowly, you too become one of the infected.


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2 Responses to “The Infected”

  1. Me Says:

    Good points, I think I will definitely subscribe! I’ll go and read some more! What do you see the future of this being?

    • suki-joshi Says:

      The future?
      Well, this blog is primarily here so I can force myself to write at least a little each day so I don’t get rusty or worse yet, stagnate. As for the dream itself, I may one day try and work it into a story, but horror is not my main genre or to be honest an element I work with almost ever, so while I may tinker around with it, I’m not certain it will ever develop much further than this. Not to say when I try I will half-ass it, I just already have so many idea’s which have precedence over this one, I’m not sure I will have the time to do the job it deserves. This was more of a social commentary from my sub-concious.

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