"...I was in a trial of a new anesthetic, getting my wisdom teeth out. Anaphixil. Supposed to knock you out instantly, you get pleasant dreams in the meanwhile, minimal memory loss outside the time you're under, all that good stuff. I don't remember what was wrong with the old one.
The new one didn't work for me, in any case. I was busy having some sex dream when I heard an "oh, shit" coming from somewhere outside the universe. Dr. Kuhn's voice for sure. The dream faded to gray, but I didn't wake up. Then I totally got the distant tunnel of light thing. Above and in front of me. It was textbook. I've never felt so... beckoned. I mean, shit, I've never even used that word before. I floated up towards it, and went through it, even though it was like a solid thing.
After that I saw a pair of doors. Not gold, though, just glass. Glass with metal handles. Nice size and shape. Not the kind where you're never sure whether you're supposed to be pushing or pulling. It's okay, I guess, if the door has written on it which it is, but with glass I always see through the other side and still get confused and have to sort out which word is the right way around. Anyway, it wasn't a problem here. The handle, I could almost hear it whisper in my ear, "pull". And the door didn't say nothing about pulling or pushing.
There was written on it just the word "DOOR".
I went through the doors, but didn't find heaven. It was --- There was all these shelves. My eyes were blurry still from staring at the bright light from before, but they were settling down now. On the shelves there was all kinds of food. Every box looked the same, even though they were all different colors. The colors --- I mean, it's like gray isn't just one color, it's all the grays in between, right? Red is all the different things that look kind of reddish. You could have a movie where everything in it was what you'd call red and you could still see one thing from the next.
It was like that. All the colors were different, but they were all the same sort of quiet. Just a little whisper different, each one, from white and black and gray.
I looked in one aisle, and there was box after box with nothing on it but the word CEREAL. I took one down and opened it. Instead of the crinkly plastic liner there was this stuff that felt the same, it but moved like silk. I opened it easily, silently. The cereal was little oaty circles and corn flakes, sweetened just a bit. Good stuff. Every box was a different color, but they had the same stuff in them. I checked.
Next aisle over, there were loaves of BREAD, all the same, wheatier than white, whiter than wheat, wrapped in the same beautiful translucent silk-plastic. Over there, cartons of light-brown EGGS. Here gallons of MILK, all lowfat but not quite skim. In the back, rows of little shrink-wrapped parcels of MEAT that looked like ground turkey.
I saw CHIPS and SOFT DRINK, ate CRACKERS with SOUP that I heated over the RANGE that I found in the appliances section, sat on CHAIR and slept on BED. Everything knew what it was, and told me, and said nothing else. The letters were always in a color distinct enough from the background to be legible, but no more distinct than that. Thick and chunky letters, like they were painted on with PAINT BRUSH. The background was always uniform, with nothing besides the name of the product.
It was a surprise when --- it felt like weeks had gone by --- invisible arms tore me out of BED and pulled me across FLOOR and I found myself outside. I could see so clearly now, unlike when I first came, the front of my new home. Everything in my body was made out of pain. My mouth most of all. I guess my wisdom teeth were out, now. Tears and blood covered my face. Kuhn was saying --- he was telling me I'd be okay, everything was okay, just a little unexpected additional procedure --- but it's all okay, insurance will cover it, don't worry.
I told him to shut up and bring me pen and paper. I didn't want to forget this in case the Anaphixil didn't work in more ways than one. Actually I had to play charades a bit to get him to do it, since talking moved the blood and gauze around noisily and not much else. But he got my point eventually, and I took the pen and wrote down all I needed to write to make sure that someday I'd build it, that I would bring it into to the world, make it real. I didn't know yet where I'd find the money, but I knew I'd have enough once I built it. It was the word that filled my eyes as the doors peacefully shut behind me, on the giant sign above them.