Do you know what I’ve discovered? Somebody’s messing with me and I really think it is part of a right-wing conspiracy! Last week (while I was still asleep) something or someone pulled me out of the bed (feet first) like a slithery wet noodle off a well-oiled spoon. What made the situation even weirder is that I ended up on my back (not my stomach which would be normal), and I landed on my feet with half my body bending towards the floor and the other half of it still on the bed while my hands extended above my head in a “hallelujah, praise you Jesus” pose—replete with jazz hands. I don’t know how long I maintained that position before I woke up, but when I did awaken and interrogated my husband, WW disavowed all knowledge of “messing with me” and posing me in that sleep-walk position. He also denied having seen me sleep-walk and says he thinks I just rolled off the bed under my own volition in an attempt to go to the bathroom and obviously never completed my mission. WW said he was glad to see I had contained my bladder (more than I could ever know), and he also said that his line of reasoning was the only logical, scientific explanation.
Really? I don’t believe WW’s explanation for one hot minute: I think what happened to me is a plot by the Tea Party or one of those Patriot wingnuts who hate my blog. I had no proof, but I could sense that this had Tea Party written all over it! Also, what I didn’t tell WW was that I had been obsessively worried about one of my upcoming errands while simultaneously reading Dan Brown’s new book: Inferno. (There are certain things I dread that are part of the human experience that I am convinced were inspired by the Devil who I think secretly runs a plethora of conspiracy groups, including the Tea Party, the Birthers, the Truthers, the various Patriot groups—in other words, I have conspiracy theories about conspiracy theorists.) Anyway, one of the many things I dread is going to the gynecologist and the dentist (both doctors have onerous jobs, if you ask me, and they both have to say “open wide” to get their desired results which I find to be both compromising and most uncomfortable). But the other thing that ranks a close second to being poked and prodded by a gynecologist and a dentist is doing business with the DMV, and I had appointments to visit all three that week!
Cartoon by W. Hawland
I think I was trying to run away and hide in my sleep when I slid out of the bed because sometime during the night I dreamt that I stumbled upon a government conspiracy that revealed that the DMV had been sold to the Devil. In the dream, the Devil had his DMV window agents mess with my mind while I tried to register for a renewal of my driver’s license, and they kept thwarting my plans so I wouldn’t be able to drive or vote ever again. Now, I am a rational woman. I realize that my waking mind had been dealing with all sorts of stress: news about the bogus scandals being ginned up against the President, news about a new conspiracy cretin by the name of Alex Jones, a fundamentalist Christian, who has all sorts of stupid theories about everything (government responsible for Sandy Hook, Aurora shooting, tornado in Oklahoma was a red flag, to name a few), impending dentist and gynecologist appointments, reading Dan Brown’s Inferno which is one giant conspiracy theory, and not to mention the fact that I had received notification that I needed to haul my ass before the DMV (and who doesn’t hate the DMV?). I chalked the entire dream and sleep-walking incident up to stress until I had another dream that suggested my conspiracy theory just might have legs. In this dream, my alter-ego, the Dalai Mama, placed a call to the DMV to get her license renewed.
Cartoonist: Horsey/Los Angeles Times
DALAI MAMA: “Hello, hello? Can you hear me, DMV? NO, NO, NO—DON’T YOU DARE TRANSFER ME AGAIN! I’ve been on the phone for almost an hour trying to get to a fuc ____, I mean a “real” human. I got a letter in the mail from you people three months ago saying my driver’s license was up for renewal, but the letter says I have to come and get my license in person. What’s up with that? Nothin’ has changed about me since the last time you tortured my ass to renew my license: same address, I stayed black, I’m not dead, my weight is . . . kind of the same, and I don’t look any older because ‘black don’t crack!’”
DMV: “No can do, lady—the law is the law and there are no exceptions.”
DALAI MAMA: “What do you mean: ‘There are no exceptions?’ I have never had a good experience with you people since the beginning of time, and I know from my Internet sources that President Bush sold the DMV to the highest bidder (in this case, the Devil) in order to help pay for the two wars he forgot to fund. I’m not interested in getting’ that close to evil. So can’t you simply renew my license via the mail?”
DMV: “Sorry, lady—you have to follow the rules! It’s been a decade since we last saw your face in this office. Get your chubby old ass in here so that we can confirm you’re still you, that you still can see straight, and you’re still black—not to mention the fact that you will need a new photo. I’m sure a lot has changed about you in a decade. If I remember correctly, you tend to pack on the pounds.”
DALAI MAMA: “But, but, but. . .”
DMV: “No buts Chica! No face time—no license.”
Cartoonist: D. Piraro | www.bizarro.com
(IN THE DREAM, THE DALAI MAMA SLAMS DOWN THE PHONE AND MARCHES OFF TO THE DMV OFFICE TO FACE HER CONSPIRATORS. THE PARKING LOT IS PACKED AND THE DALAI MAMA IS FORCED TO PARK ABOUT A BLOCK AND A HALF AWAY. IT IS A WINDY DAY AND BY THE TIME SHE ARRIVES AT THE DMV, HER WELL-ANCHORED WIG STANDS STRAIGHT UP ON TOP OF HER HEAD AS IF THE DALAI MAMA HAD STUCK HER FINGERS IN A SOCKET. THIS WAS ENOUGH TO CONVINCE HER THAT MORE THAN A GOVERNMENT BUREAUCRACY WAS OUT TO MESS WITH HER AND RUIN HER DAY. AFTER BEING BARKED AT BY A RENT-A-COP ABOUT BEING IN THE WRONG LINE [THREE TIMES], THE DALAI MAMA FINALLY GETS HER TICKET—“E337”—AND TAKES HER SEAT WITH THE REST OF THE SHLEMIELS, WONDERING IF SHE HAS TIME TO WAIT IN THE EXCRUCIATINGLY LONG BATHROOM LINE TO FINGER COMB HER HAIR INTO SOME TYPE OF HUMAN HAIR-DO, BECAUSE, OF COURSE SHE HAS FORGOTTEN HER BRUSH.)
DALAI MAMA: “E337, huh? What’s your number (Dalai Mama says this to nobody in particular but hoping to get a response from the guy sitting next to her since she realizes that Jesus may return to Earth before her number is actually called and a friendly seat mate might be a good thing).”
DMV GUY: “A14”
DALAI MAMA: “WTF? What number did they call before I sat my sorry-ass down beside you?”
DMV GUY: “D216.”
DALAI MAMA: “There is no rhyme or reason to that numbering system. How long have you been here?”
DMV GUY: “Lost count. When I came in, Bush was still president.”
(THE DALAI MAMA SHARES A SYMPATHETIC LAUGH WITH THE GUY NEXT TO HER AND TRIES TO FINGER COMB HER HAIR INTO PLACE TO NO GREAT AVAIL. AS SHE LOOKS BACK TOWARDS THE LADIES’ ROOM, SHE SEES THERE IS STILL A LINE THREE LANES DEEP. THE DALAI MAMA CONGRATULATES HERSELF FOR HAVING BROUGHT ALONG THE NEW DAN BROWN BOOK AND HONKERS DOWN FOR A GOOD LONG READ, FAILING TO HEAR THE INCESSANT BLEATING OF THE INTERCOM WHEN IT FINALLY ANNOUNCES HER NUMBER.)
INTERCOM: “E337 report to window 10—E337.”
INTERCOM: “E337—REPORT TO WINDOW 10 OR LOSE YOUR SPOT IN LINE!”
INTERCOM: “E337—THIS IS THE LAST CALL FOR E337 . . . GOING ONCE, GOING TWICE . . .!”
WINDOW 10: “Oh, der ju r: Were ju sleep? Innercalm call ju dre times. Here, sin dez pipers and pay dirty-dicks dollars befo I sin ju to winnow sextin.”
DALAI MAMA: “Oh, God—Baby, I don’t mean to be rude, but I don’t have a clue what you just said or what language you said it in, and I know I can’t afford to screw this up or I’ll never be able to drive again. Did you say, go to Window 16? Do I pay you thirty-three dollars? Do I get my license at Window 16 or from Window 10? Huh?” (The Window 10 woman grabs the credit card from Dalai Mama’s hand in disgust at what she perceives is mockery of her accent, gives Dalai Mama a receipt, and points to a window that has the number 17 on it. There is no window 16. The windows go from 15 to 17 with a sign in between that says employees only, but the Dalai Mama goes toward Window 17 hoping to find someone she can understand.)
WINDOW 17: “Sit down and look at the camera. You may smile but you can’t show any teeth. Do you understand English or shall I have someone tell you the rules in Spanish? What? No, you can’t ask why, ‘no teeth.’ But I can tell you that it’s for scientific reasons so that we can properly measure the ‘cortex of the bio flex that makes up the grio-dynamix.’ Understand? Click! Now go back to Window 10.”
WINDOW 10: “Take of ju glazzes and luk into de fewfender and read de firs lean.”
DALAI MAMA: “But it’s scratched. I can’t see anything through this 20-year-old view finder. Can’t I put on my glasses?”
WINDOW 10: “What ju meen, ju can’t see? Do ju want ju leesence? Den red de liters! Who tol’ ju to take of ju glazes? I nefer tol’ ju dat! Are ju habing truble? Do ju need someone who speech Spanish?
DALAI MAMA: “Sorry, so sorry! I misunderstood, girlfriend. See, I’ve put my glasses back on and I can read the line perfectly: B, D, F, R, 3, C, T! Perfect, yeah? Now can I please have my license so that I can get the hell out of here? I’m kind of anxious to see my picture—my old picture was just so fine and I was really foxy looking in that one—I’d hate to lose it. Why didn’t Window 17, I mean 16, let me smile?”
WINDOW 10: “No! No pixture for du! Ju no unnerstennd science why we no let you smile—it’s ‘cause of de ‘bipper-fex of de myerbermaplex,’ so it don’t ‘intermess wit de lubercromex.’ Ju license be sent to ju in tin to fifftin dazs. And are ju sur ju told de truff on ju application abut ju weight, ‘cause you luk a lot fatter den ju say ju iz on form?”
I am discovering that the main ingredients of conspiracy theories are based on fear, ignorance, and feeling out of control of one’s circumstances or life. I had great fun turning a sleep-walking dream into a satirical conspiracy, but in the light of day, I know the truth: there are no demonic underworld figures controlling the DMV, my gynecologist, or my dentist—just a cumbersome bureaucratic agency where the customer service people all hate their jobs, a doctor that can sometimes be too up-close-and-personal, and another type of doctor I’ve feared sense childhood because I can’t stand the sound of a drill. But if one knows history, it is replete with actual conspiracy theories that have caused great harm to large people groups and fueled major world wars just because fear, ignorance, and feeling out of control were easily manipulated to wreak great havoc and evil on the Earth. Everyday another conspiracy theorist crawls out of the Internet sewer in the U.S. and more and more conspiracy bile gets released into the air for us to consume as Americans. My fellow Americans, I have a suggestion: “Wake up!” Let’s shut the conspiracy theorists down by not succumbing to our fears, let’s learn the “Truth” about all their lies, let’s turn the liars off, shut them down, and make them go away by giving them no credence at all. I think we’ll be the wiser for it and our lives will be a lot more peaceful.
GLENN BECK “SAMPLE CONSPIRACY THEORIES”
“Barack Hussein Obama and his fellow Muslims are conspiring to force you to gay-marry an illegal immigrant in a mosque at Ground Zero.” The Glenn Beck Conspiracy Theory: Fair and Balanced Paranoia, Delivered on Demand (About.com/political humor)
“Islamicists and the uber-left don’t want you to know that their real plan is to remove your appendix and eat it in front of you and your children.” The Glenn Beck Conspiracy Theory: Fair and Balanced Paranoia, Delivered on Demand (About.com/political humor)
ABOUT GLENN BECK’S CONSPIRACY THEORIES
“Finally, a guy who says what people who aren’t thinking are thinking.” –Jon Stewart, on the “The Daily Show”
Cartoonist: Lowe | Tribune Media
POST SCRIPT: Tall tale actualities or conspiracies: sliding out of bed like a noodle while still asleep, reading Dan Brown’s Inferno while at the DMV, and being tortured by the DMV windows are accurate and happened to me over the course of several DMV visits. I still haven’t received my new driver’s license with the picture of my hair that looks like I’m standing in an electric-shock wind tunnel yet. It may never come, at which point, I’ll acquiesce to never drive again. I can live with that. WW will just have to drive me around like a reverse “Driving Miss Daisy” (Driver = white man; passenger = cranky, black, old woman who always dreamed of having a chauffeur). Fellow Citizens: beware; there are forces at play here that we cannot control!
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