Armagideon Time

Wrecked me some for a dream

March 22nd, 2016

It’s a vague recollection which barely qualifies as a memory, a hazy and tantalizing fragment on dwelling on the periphery of the mind’s eye. As time goes by, you wonder if it ever had any basis in reality or was just another lingering effect of the raging fever that laid you low for an entire week in ninth grade.

Yes, your imagination must have conjured it up while you were ensconced beneath a pile of quilts on the living room sofa, dosed on Nyquil, with the family TV tuned to some basic cable movie channel.

That’s a sound explanation. A rational explanation. A sane explanation. It was just the drugs and a brain-frying pestilence playing games with your subconscious, like your lucid dreams about the bubbling tar pit in the basement or the gigantic tree sloth peeling away the aluminum siding around your childhood bedroom window.

Knowing that is a comfort which fortifies you against the phantasmagorical terror….

….until you discover, some three decades later, that it was ALL TOO REAL.

Yes, it is a bit disturbing how the off-model Peter Billingsley on the poster art happens to be an exact doppelganger for my tweener self, but it’s not the revelation itself which unleashes an ontological crisis.

If The Dirt Bike Kid was real, what other half-remembered childhood terrors were not simply figments of an overactive imagination? There could be a whole pantheon of nightmares out there lying in wait for me — a hellish host of bubbling tar, giant sloths, flesh eating house plants, radioactive mutants, and toilet-dwelling giant squid, all led by a cackling tow-headed fiend on a flying Kawasaki motocross bike.

Related posts:

  1. The Long Game: Waking up from a dream
  2. Dream of the perfect life
  3. Every Record Tells a Story #22: And still you dream

7 Responses to “Wrecked me some for a dream”

  1. Zeno

    I remember seeing either this trailer or an TV spot for this back when it was released. Somewhere around the third repetition of a stock character yelling some such variant of “GET DAT KID!” it occurred to me that my tolerance for pablum had somewhat decreased with the onset of legal driving age.

  2. SJB

    I still best him as Messy Marvin…and you neglected to mention that he he won a Young Artist Award for Dirt Bike kid!

  3. Happenstance

    I love how the “Limited Editon” Blu-Ray of The Dirt Bike Kid is still available from Amazon despite being released in 2014. Currently selling at almost fifty percent off list price.

  4. sallyp

    Wait, Ralphie grew up a little and got a magic motorcycle or something.

    That’s just… odd.

  5. stavner

    “Next Christmas the Old Man got me a talking dirt bike. I didn’t like it.”

    “Produced by Julie Corman”–makes sense.

  6. sallyp

    So he shot out the tires with his Red Ryder BB gun.

  7. athodyd

    On the opposite end of the reality spectrum, I am still laboring to get Dirtbike Summer realized Orbis Tertius-style: http://athodyd.tumblr.com/post/91615800417/favorite-scenes-from-dirtbike-summer-1986

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