A Dream Unrealized

Yesterday my roommate confided in me a secret he'd been harboring since the spring of '97, a simpler time when the Titanic was sinking nightly at a theater near you for a mere $6.25 and teenagers across the globe were jiving to the timeless, ultra-hip beats of Hanson and The Spice Girls.

"Corey," my roommate said to me, "my life is a mess. I'm twenty-five years old, I've been stuck in the same highly lucrative job for nearly two years and I only have one master's degree. I thought by now I would be…oh, nevermind."

"What, roommate?" I asked. "What did you think your life would be like by now?"

"It's stupid."

"No," I coaxed. "Tell me."

"Well, I thought by now..."

"Go on," I urged.

"I thought by now I'd be the lead guitarist in a kick-ass glam metal band called Streetcorner Lovechair."

I waited in silence for him to continue.

"I mean, who am I, man? Would my thirteen-year-old self even recognize me if he walked past me in a bar?"

I started to mutter something about the Illinois drinking age, but when I saw that his pain was real, I stopped myself.

"Look at me," he said, his voice cracking. "I don't even have pink hair, man." His lips started trembling. "I don't even have pink hair!"

"It'll be okay," I said, pulling his head to my shoulder. "I promise it'll be okay."

Although I didn't have an answer for my distraught roommate, I did have Photoshop. And an idea.

For minutes and minutes I toiled over my 13" MacBook, cutting and pasting together the pieces of a ridiculous dream that my roommate could never achieve in a gazillion trillion years on his own.

Moments later, I presented him with this:

He glanced down at the fake album jacket of his equally fake band and then looked back up at me, a single tear welling in his eye.

"Corey," he said, "I really appreciate what you've done, but I can't accept this."

"Why, roommate?" I responded. "It's just a JPEG image. It literally cost me zero dollars."

"No, I mean can't accept your gift because it's all wrong."

"What do you mean?" I asked.

"I changed the name of the band," he answered.

"You what?"

"I changed the name of the band," he said again. "Streetcorner Lovechair just didn't vibe with our hypothetical image."

"Uh, okay," I stammered. "What name does vibe with your hypothetical band's hypothetical image, roommate?"

"Second Story Vomit Shower."