Timmy’s Last Nightmare

Posted in Stories on  | 10 minutes | 4 Comments →

Isolated beads of sweat were forming on Timmy’s brow as usual. The dream had just begun. The long corridors leading into that eerie room seemed all too familiar. He managed to make it to the door. His fingers clenched the handle as he hesitated briefly. He knew and feared what he was about to embark upon, yet the possibility remained: might it be different this time? Unsure, Timmy entered the room.

“Well hello there Timmy…”

The placidly intimidating voice reassuringly welcomed him.

He recognized the tone as that of Wilhelm, his guide through the journey. They had gotten to know each other pretty well over the past few weeks. Wilhelm invited Timmy to have a seat in his usual chair in the center of the room. Rows of deadened monitors were arranged on the wall patiently awaiting resurrection via direct current. Slightly off to the left and considerably closer than the other screens was a very large monitor. Behind Timmy was the small control room where Wilhelm sat, upon his stool and much like the Wizard of Oz, coordinating the myriad of images that would appear on the screens.

“Are you ready to begin?” Wilhelm asked expectantly.

“Yeah…I mean, yes. Yes, I’m ready.”

The whirring sound of electrical activity pervaded the entire room. Timmy could feel the power and energy circulating about. It gave him a feeling of helplessness. Slowly the screens displayed their content one by one until Timmy sat staring with awe and fear into a kaleidoscopic collage of visual images.

On one screen he saw a huge mansion in the Bahamas with a landscape so elaborate that all forms of climate could be experienced within the tiny area of land it sat upon. Boasting it’s value at seventy billion dollars, the pompous designer proceeded to show all the features and space-age trinkets from the voice activated, fully automatic kitchen to the self-maintained pool and spa nested comfortably on the roof of this lavish complex of excess.

“Whoa…a robot!” Timmy was fascinated by the technological equivalent of a maid.

“Look to the next screen, Timmy. On your left.”

Grungy children huddled around a trash can bathed in the emanating warmth of a fire in what appeared to be an abandoned manufacturing plant deep in urban America. The youngest and roughest of the group, an eleven-year-old girl named Carly, had just returned from a night on the streets stealing, begging and doing anything else to get money for food and cigarettes. The contrast of the two scenarios was strongly apparent to Timmy.

Wilhelm pointed to a screen in the bottom row, three screens from the edge. Scenes of a famine stricken village in Africa evoked emotions of confusion and sorrow. Here it was not uncommon for families, tribes, even entire genealogies to be wiped out in a matter of weeks due to curable and preventable diseases, starvation or malnutrition. The luxuries of food accessibility and proper medical care were not readily available in that area.

“Why do they have to live like that?” Timmy asked, after a moment of quiet reflection.

Wilhelm always spoke succinctly and with convincing authority.

Another screen caught Timmy’s attention, one with a vehicle that could travel at the speed of sound. It was truly an amazing feat of science to have a man hurtling through the air in a fiberglass capsule at speeds in excess of seven hundred miles per hour. Quoted as costing three billion dollars to create, suggested uses for the vehicle included amusement park rides, military pursuits and high-speed land travel for prominent government officials.

Timmy’s attention drifted to other screens, eventually resting on one with a rather distressing scene that he could not fully understand at first. Wedged against the rusty door handle was a splintered chair serving as a makeshift lock while the troubled teen sat on her windowsill in disarray, overlooking the lifeless concrete jungle. Images of her drunken father touching her and hitting her mother raced through her mind as she considered ending her life with a short flight to the cold cement eleven stories below.

Timmy was startled when Wilhelm burst out unexpectedly, something that was unusual for him to do.

“Timmy, there is something very wrong with people. You see, the world is like a swimming pool in which most everybody is drowning. Very few people even consider reaching out to others because they are drowning, too. As you can see on these monitors, there are sufficient resources in the world to help the hungry, encourage the downtrodden and remedy inequalities of all kinds. The problem is the doctrine of selfism so prevalent in modern society. Material society trains people to think mainly of themselves; most members of such cultures function in a microcosm of ambition and self-fulfillment, which may well be meaningless in the end.

Timmy paused for a moment as Wilhelm’ words penetrated his psyche.

“Don’t they feel bad about having so much while others have so little?”

“For the most part they are unaware. Those who do occasionally stumble upon a moment of clarity unfortunately rationalize it away, saying things like ‘I work hard for what I have’ or ‘you have to look out for yourself in this world.’

Wilhelm sighed. The predicaments of modern man seemed to trouble him greatly.

Once again Timmy’s eyes fixated on the ever-changing screens in front of him. He saw a slaughterhouse where thousands of creatures stood locked in dark, wrought-iron cages. Groups of men in white jackets and gas masks walked around, some jotting down information onto yellow notepads, others injecting solutions into the animals to increase their weight, development and reproduction ratios, and ultimately their dollar value. Once free and roaming creatures of the wild, human evolution had created this a species that never saw the light of day or experienced the joy of trotting through pastures of green. The muscles in their legs suffered from atrophy so severe they would often fall down in their own excrement and lay there, too weak to get up. The story was written on their sad, lifeless countenances staring emptily into space, mustering occasional groans of condolence to one another.

On another screen was a group of nuclear and biological engineers developing the most potent weapon of mass destruction man had yet seen. This bomb was powerful enough to wipe out an eighth of the planet with a successful detonation. Nearing completion of the project, they smiled and began to applaud themselves over their ‘creation.’

Prompted by scenes of celebrity awards ceremonies, commercials for beauty products and the busyness of Wall Street, young Timmy came to a conclusion.

“We sure think we’re the center of the universe, don’t we?”

Wilhelm nodded in affirmation. “Such scenes illustrate the fact that, as men are, society will be. You see, Timmy, the problem is not money or science or technology, for those things are inherently neutral. They could be used for truly progressive purposes. The problem is not with these things, Timmy. The problem is with people. Selfishness, coldness, greed, violence, hatred…these are the destroyers of our race.”

“But we can’t change people,” Timmy insisted.

“To an extent…” said Wilhelm. “Although it may be impossible for you or I to externally change a person, we are able to motivate and encourage them to change themselves. It all starts with the individual. We set examples with our own living and it is only when one has learned to stay afloat and swim strongly in the tides of life that he can reach out to others. Those consumed by the insatiable drive for wealth, power and prestige know not how to render selfless service, because they are drowning.”

“I guess that makes sense…” Timmy replied.

Wilhelm spoke with a concise simplicity that made everything perfectly clear.

“Perhaps it’s time to have a look at this screen…”

All the other screens went black except for the large monitor off to the left. On this screen was a young boy stealing from jackets in the second grade coatroom. Timmy looked on, wondering what the relevance of this screen was, when he suddenly realized. Shamefully, he looked at Wilhelm, with tears welling up in his eyes.

“But, Wilhelm, I…”

“I understand,” he responded, sparing Timmy the duty of explanation. Wilhelm handed him a small cookie to soothe.

The scenes continued. Timmy sat in his classroom eagerly awaiting recess. His teacher was in mid-sentence when the piercing sound of the bell permeated every molecule within a two-mile radius. Timmy jolted out of his seat and ran as fast as he could to the monkey bars, pushing and shoving other kids aside so he could be first. He climbed to the top. He had already been playing for a few minutes by the time Craig got there, winded and breathing heavily. Craig rested his
oversize frame for a moment, then climbed on the bars alongside Timmy.

“Get lost, fat-ass…” Timmy taunted him. “The bars are gonna break!”

Timmy glanced around for approval in the form of laughter from his fellow classmates. Craig pretended not to care. It was a defense mechanism he’d learned in kindergarten when the jokes started. Further encouraged by the reaction of the others, Timmy continued to satisfy his own longing for attention and popularity through his relentless attack of Craig’s individuality.

“Hey fatty, watch out…they’re bending! Better go run a few laps and then come back!”

This second assault was not as easily deflected. Sullen, Craig hobbled down from the bars, ostensibly to fetch a drink of water.

On the screen, Timmy could see that Craig’s eyes had filled with tears but in real life that subtle detail went undisclosed.

Timmy couldn’t bear it anymore. Wilhelm’s point had been made forcibly clear. His eyes seared Timmy’s conscience like hot coals. Timmy turned away in shame and disgust. He wanted so badly to wake up, but he couldn’t. Not just yet.

“You are fortunate, Timmy, in that you are young and your ways are not yet concrete. Everybody has human ugliness. It shows in different ways through different people…”

Timmy couldn’t say anything. He just wanted the dream to end. He got up from his chair and burst out of the room into the labyrinth of winding corridors. Wilhelm’s words seemed to echo after him.

“It all starts with the individual…”

Finally he made it back to the door, which signified the end of his dream. He awoke, got up, showered and made some breakfast before walking to school. He was in middle school now; a big kid. He passed by a crippled hot dog vendor who had just spilled a huge bag of pretzels all over the sidewalk. Without thought Timmy smirked to himself at the man’s misfortune. Reaching into his pocket, he surprisingly retrieved a handful of broken cookie crumbs that he’d forgotten where they came from. Timmy couldn’t quite identify what was so relevant about the crumbs; he never remembered those dreams after he woke up.

He just turned around and helped the man gather his pretzels.


  1. shakadan


    who the fuck is timmy.and why did you steal the warfare is mental?FUCK!!!!!!!!!!

  2. cl


    *Note: That’s my buddy Shaka. He claims I stole a phrase that B-Rod can testify I invented. Gotta love the homies!

  3. Artist: Ice Cube
    Album: War & Peace, Vol. 2 (The Peace Disc)
    Release Date: Feb 29, 2000
    Track: Mental Warfare
    [Ice Cube]
    i Love The Sound Of Gangsta Shit In The Mornin’
    [Some Guy]
    bitch You Know The Size
    world Motherfucking Wide
    [Ice Cube]
    you Ain’t Got To Be In The Pen To Be In Prison
    you In The Prison Of Your Mutherfuckin’ Mind
    [Some Guy]
    what Kinda Time We Got Up Here?
    [Ice Cube]
    15:30 Am
    everything Is Real On This Concrete And Steel
    everything Is Real On This Concrete And Steel
    the Warfare Is Mental
    the Warfare Is Mental
    [Some Guy]
    supreme Gangster Shit
    we Dream Gangster Shit
    [Ice Cube]
    now I Wanna See If You Punk Mutherfuckers Is Paying Attention
    i Love The Sound Of Gangsta Shit In The Mornin’

  4. cl


    Ah, a revisit to the old days. People used to cuss a lot around here! I forgot that John Morales tried to falsify my claim of inventing this blog’s moniker. I certainly listened to some Cube as a youth, but only the early stuff (Amerikkka’s Most Wanted, Death Certificate, Kill at Will, etc.). I never cared for the later stuff, like the album John cites.

    At any rate, the phrase “The Warfare Is Mental” came about after much discussion of religion, philosophy and conspiracy theories. It was meant as a corollary to the phrase, “The warfare is spiritual,” which is a direct implication of Ephesians 6.

    Just to set the record straight :)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *