I often have paranoid delusions that 1) the world is made of cardboard and fiberglass and sawdust and drywall, 2) I’m the only one who is alive (only because my awareness of myself is the only awareness I can sort of kind of prove (and even then I’m unsure / could be convinced otherwise)), 3) I’m dead and stuck inside a dream for all eternity . . . and that my dreams here are dreams within dreams, and on and on, so as to keep me fooled, 4) I’m the protagonist of an extremely boring episode of ‘The Twilight Zone’, 5) if I blink or turn away or fall asleep for a few minutes, everyone will vanish and I’ll be alone in the whole world (which is, whoa, actually the premise for the very first episode of ‘The Twilight Zone’).

. . . your standard sci-fi delusions more or less!!

A dream: Last night I was alone in a sort of 1950s-looking small town. It was nighttime and there were leaves all over the street, so I reckoned it was fall. The place seemed too clean and utopian to be real to me . . . kinda looked like a movie set or something. I walked around and knocked on buildings and park benches and trees and so on, all hollow. I remember thinking, “Ah man, I knew it! The world really is fake!” I thought about telling someone, but there was no one else around, so I got to walking.

All five of my horror scenarios had combined to form this one dream! I didn’t necessarily hate it. In fact I seemed relieved in the dream, knowing that I was alone and that probably nothing could hurt me. I ran around the streets looking inside buildings but everything was dark and empty. The only building that was unlocked was the movie theater. I had this urge to go into the basement and so I did. Down there, hand to God, I saw myself standing there, and when he saw me he darted away beneath these old brass water pipes that filled the entire basement. I went after him because I didn’t know what else to do. There was only a three-foot clearance between the pipes and the ground so I had to duck the entire time, and run through hundreds and hundreds of spiderwebs. My doppelganger was covered in the things. Once we reached the end of the huge labyrinthine basement, Other Ryan started panicking and brushing the spiderwebs off his clothes.

He said: “Dude! Do I have any spiders on me?”

And I said: “Yeah man they’re all over your back. They don’t look big though.”

In saying this I realized there were probably dozens of spiders crawling all over my back as well, so I started freaking out and brushing them off.

Well: So there we were, my clone and me, in the basement of a vacant movie theater in a cardboard town, covered in fuckin spiders!!

I sat upright in bed and started feeling around my back. No spiders! I went back to sleep and, as far as I know, dreamed of nothing this time.