Brady Carlson’s 49th Fever Dream

What I intended to be a short hour-and-change nap tonight turned into one of the more surreal voyages my subconscious has ever booked. I dreamed I was filling in as announcer for a late-night shift for public radio, only the studio was at the home of NPR host Diane Rehm. Who had, apparently, moved her house from the D.C. area to the southwestern Maine seacoast.

Now, this was a nice house, wood trim, mellow lighting, big wooden deck in the back, atrium doors and skylights all over- only it had a few quirks. For one, the show’s producers (Diane was apparently away that week) liked to let the local wildlife run through the house. The most peculiar was a near-adult moose who was apparently such a huge public radio fan that he liked to tackle on-air hosts and quiz them about the industry. So as I’m getting my newscast together the moose smacks me with his antlers, knocking me to the ground, and starts asking if I like The Diane Rehm Show. “It’s great, isn’t it? I mean, all the different topics, and Diane is such a great interviewer…”

After about eight cycles of this, I’m finally able to grab the moose’s collar (yes, he wore a collar- a red one) and lured him back outside. This, oddly enough, was the cue for the house’s ghost children to introduce themselves. They hovered over the microphone stand I was using, telling me all about the mystery they had been trying to solve for centuries and only I could help them do it. I finally lost my patience and tried to leave the house, intending to quit, only there were two problems with my plan: first, the house used antique coins in place of doorknobs, so I couldn’t figure out how to get out. And second, even if I had learned the secret of door-opening-via-antique-coin, the public radio moose was hanging around outside mumbling “I hear this week’s ‘Car Talk’ is gonna be great.” The alarm went off only moments later, the most welcome sound I’d heard in a long, long time.

Bring on the whitecoats. Y’all know where I live.

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