I was in a bedroom with wood floors, and there was a girl sitting on the bed talking to me. There was a bright green caterpillar that was kind of fuzzy in the bed.
me: "You've got a caterpillar in your bed."
her: "Yes, they're all over. Look at the floor."
I looked at the floor and saw smaller ones making their way around.
her: "Mom won't let us kill them because she wants the rat to be able to eat them. But I think they're gross."
Slipping into lucidity, I tried not to reveal too much about who I was.
me: "There must be laws about that, she can't have kids living in a bug house."
her: "I thought there would be, but when I asked [someone's name?] he said there wasn't."
me: "Look into... um, what are called 'health codes'. Even if they don't sting, bugs can walk over germs and then walk into food."
We wandered into another room where there was a couch. The girl and I sat on the couch next to a boy who had a sheet of blue-lined white notebook paper. A man in a recliner was dictating what I thought was a shopping list, but I couldn't quite understand what. The boy was very excited, so I looked over his shoulder.
He was writing down what looked at first like a moves list from a game of cards, such as bridge or chess. He was madly erasing and asking the man in the chair to slow down.
boy: "I'm computing radixes, this is hard...hold on."
A radix is a general term for the base of a mathematical operation. So when you're doing long division by rules given to you in school, those rules are being executed in "radix 10". A lot of cryptography depends on the usage of prime numbers as a radix.
The man in the chair started asking questions of the boy. I seemed to have a rat sitting on my shoulder.
chair man: "Is there any sort of arterial? Something dividing it by north and south?"
boy: "Yes, there is...I almost have it. It's called 'I-35'."
I-35 is the major north-south interstate in Austin.
I didn't comment on the procedure, rather I looked at the girl. She had what looked like a square tattoo or writing on her neck that had 1s and 0s in opposite corners. There was also a kind of strangely scripted word that I thought was "accept", but looking at it more closely I saw it as starting with an o, possibly "ocept".
girl: (smiling) "Yes, it says ocept."
The top hit for OCEPT is a horse therapist:
Animal Manipulation ( OCEPT ) www.ocept.info Welcome to the website of Oxford College of Equine Physical Therapy We are an experienced provider of educational courses in McTimoney-Corley animal manipulation, primarily for application to horses and dogs, to develop career opportunities or further skills for those already associated with the equine industry, or as an adjunct for owners who simply wish to provide care for their own animals.
The second is:
OCEPT stands for the Oregon Collaborative for Excellence in the Preparation of (science & math) Teachers, though after the summer institute it is sometimes regarded as the Oregon Collaborative for the Expenditure of Precious Time (just kidding, Marge).
girl: "My younger sister is going to be in a movie. They're going to tie her up."
me: "Ummm...is that something she wants to do?"
girl: "Yes, they said they'd give her money to get rid of. I could use some money to get rid of!"
My inquiry was stopped when a man came in the room saying it was time for choir auditions. Someone objected that I would "be busy with basketball" so I wouldn't have time for chorus, but he said I'd only have to sing one song.
Having no idea what songs they'd know in this parallel-reality of bug world, I followed him down the hall to a room with apparently wireless microphones. I decided to just sing "Enjoy the Silence"...the emergence of a video in a world not expecting it caused waves in an animated video re-release:
But I woke up before I could perform it.
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