Bedtime stories to help grown ups fall asleep in the deep, dark night.
Scooter spends some time at a light, helping everyone pass the time, while Stan finds sleepy challenges with the highway to a pamper zone.
- Demigod Level Powers
- Sub-Breakout Room
- The Good Place
- Henry Fonda
Notable Talking Points:
- I’ve reached the Grape Nuts demographic
- Stan is in a sweet pickle
- Let’s start a Pamper Tour
Episode 1123 – Pampered Planet Pickle | Nuns in Space S3 E10
[START OF RECORDING]
SCOOTER: Friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, it’s time for the podcast…podcast…podcaster that can’t even put one word to…podcaster; that’s one word. I can’t even put it together. Can’t put one word together; let’s not even think about putting two together, ‘cause when I think about conjunction, junction, what’s your function, is it to make one word or not? But it’s time for Sleep With Me, the podcast that is here to keep you company, take your mind off of stuff so you could fall asleep. I’m here to help. The show does take a few tries to get used to. It’s a podcast you don’t really listen to; it doesn’t put you to sleep. I’m just here to be your friend in the deep, dark night. So, see how it goes.
The reason I make the show and the reason so many people are listening along right now is one, a lot of us know how it feels in the deep, dark night. Whatever’s keeping you awake or whatever’s going on, I might not have been through it myself, but I could relate to how it feels, probably, and if I can’t, there’s someone listening right now who can. You deserve a good night’s sleep. You deserve a bedtime you could look forward to or feel neutral about. That’s why I make the show, so I put in so much work because I know how it feels and I want you to have a bedtime…you say hey, at least I got that weird podcast to listen to. It’ll keep me company and I’ll feel a little bit better.
But if you can get the rest you need and you deserve and your life is more manageable, you could be out there flourishing, that gives me mean…that gives my life meaning, to help you. But the show is very weird, too, so just a heads up, but that’s what people like about it. So give it a few tries, see how it goes. I’m so glad you’re here, and the structure of the show…we’re gonna have some support, that’s how the podcast is free, then there will be a intro to ease you into bedtime, and then we’ll have our bedtime story. So, I’m glad you’re here. I appreciate you coming by, and thanks for making it possible, my patron peeps.
INTRO: [INTRO MUSIC] Hey, are you up all night tossing, turning, mind racing? Trouble getting to sleep? Trouble staying asleep? Well, welcome. This is Sleep With Me, the podcast that puts you to sleep. We do it with a bedtime story. Alls you need to do is get in bed, turn out the lights, and press Play. I’m gonna do the rest. What I’m going to attempt to do is create a safe place where you could set aside whatever’s keeping you awake, whether it’s thoughts on your mind, thoughts you’re thinking about, past, present, future thoughts. Sometimes I have all those at the same time. Or first I’m thinking about the present, then I’m thinking about the past, then I’m thinking about the future, and then my thoughts…you know what I’m talking about; thoughts. Oh boy. I don’t say that when I’m thinking them.
I say oh, blah…thoughts; ugh. So thoughts, it could be feelings related to those thoughts. That’s kinda what that sound reflects. I say, you’re giving me some feelings, thoughts. Oh boy, feelings. When your thoughts and feelings, they don’t intersect, they’re…they’ve become one. Feelings, it could be physical sensations, it could be changes in time or temperature or routine. You could be visiting or just having someone visiting. You could have something coming up. Whatever it is, I’m here to take your mind off of stuff and keep you company in the deep, dark night. Here’s great news; I almost said grape news, but…it caused me to go on a Grape-Nut tangent. I’ve been called a Grape-Nut before, but then I say, but those aren’t nuts. Again, that’s the thing that always gets me.
One, they’re called grape seeds, originally. I never looked up…as much as I’ve complained about Grape-Nuts on the show…and by the way, Grape-Nuts, I don’t have a specific complaint really with you, but they’re called grape seeds. Here’s one thing I learned as a child; grape seeds don’t taste good. Even if you watch advertisements for Grape-Nuts on the TV, as I did as a child and I said those must be delicious; let me eat some grape seeds to find out, grape seeds don’t taste good. One of the bigger letdowns of my life is that I found out that Grape-Nuts do not have an artificial grape flavor in them, and they…I still have no clue how they got named because you say, there’s nothing grapey about these. They’re really not nutty, either. They’re some sort of high-fibre…tiny balls of high…crappy fibre.
For a kid, you’d say that. Maybe I should…Grape-Nuts, maybe I should give them another try and be quiet because Grape-Nuts, Scoots, maybe you’ll like them now that you’re…have…you know, you’re officially in the grape…oh boy, thanks. Now I’m in the…I’ve reached a grape…here’s…you say yep, I’ve reached the Grape-Nuts demographic. I didn’t know what it was ‘til I got there and said well, wait a second; are they high…are they really high-fibre? There’s none of that artificial stuff in there. Maybe I should…so they don’t have a grape flavor. Huh, maybe I’ll try them out. So, things can change, apparently. But you know what never changes? Me going off topic and getting mixed up to keep you company and put you to sleep. The reason I make the show…there’s really a lot of reasons I make the show.
One, not only I, but hundreds of thousands of other people are listening right now, and we all know what it feels like in the deep, dark night. We might not be going through the same thing you’re going through, but I want you to know you’re really not alone in the deep, dark night. There’s other people listening right now, and they can relate. So, we know how it feels in the deep, dark night. That’s one of the reasons I make the show; trouble getting to sleep, trouble staying asleep, tossing, turning, mind racing. Also, you deserve a good night’s sleep. That’s really the most important part about the show, is if you get the rest you need, your life will be more manageable, and that is important. So, I’m here to keep you company, and the way I do it is I send my voice across the deep, dark night.
I’m gonna use lulling, soothing, creaky, dulcet tones, pointless meanders, superfluous tangents. So, I’m gonna go off topic, I’m gonna get mixed up, then I’m gonna get confused, then I’m gonna double back. I might even double down on my logical talking. So, pointless meanders and superfluous tangents. You kinda already heard about those. It’s been a while since I told about the first…my first bowl of Grape-Nuts on the show, but I have done that before. Don’t worry, I’ll try to remember to tell you about it. It’s very boring, but it includes some behavior that adults at the time would have found questionable. But so, I’ll give you one more pointless meander about the Grape-Nuts, and then I’ll kinda go through some structure of the show.
But I do want you to know this show does take a few tries to get used to. So if you’re new and you’re skeptical or you’re doubtful or you’re confused, that’s how most people get to this show. You probably tried a ton of other stuff to help you fall asleep, you’re probably frustrated, you’re tired, you just want something that’s gonna work. This show does not just work; it works eventually once you kinda get used to the fact that it never makes any sense and it never gets started. You say, when’s Scoots at his best? Well, I wouldn’t call it his best, but I wouldn’t call it his worst, either. He goes…he tries to explain something and then he tells a tale. Sometimes they’re fictional and sometimes they’re as true as his feelings…well, his past feelings about Grape-Nuts.
Maybe one day you’ll see me with a shirt…and if you want to make me a shirt, particularly an airbrushed one that says I’m A Grape-Nut, go ahead, because…but I mean I’ll probably wear it either way. If it’s airbrushed, I definitely…like, with some purple airbrushing. But otherwise I’ll think about it, because I say well, maybe I should try it. Well, I guess either way, the corporation would say you’re already on our…you say, obviously you are. I’d say oh, thank you. Oh, but so…oh, if you’re doubtful or skeptical, this is like what most people say that review the show, or a lot of the personal e-mails I get of people that had trouble falling asleep, they said hey, it took two or three tries to get used to your show, but finally I realized this is a podcast I…that keeps me company, but I don’t have to keep the podcast company.
It’s there for me, and I can just kinda bathe in its background noise. Or if I can’t sleep, I know you’re gonna be there to talk…kinda talk to me. So, give it a few tries and see how it goes. If you already loathe me, sleepwithmepodcast.com/nothankyou, it has other sleep podcasts and other sleepy stuff on there. So, check that out. Oh, so what was I saying? Oh, I was gonna go over the structure of the show and all that, but let me tell you about…so, the first time I had Grape-Nuts that I can remember was…I don’t know why…I mean, I guess at my house…one, Grape-Nuts, I think, was a premium cereal, so it didn’t come at a discount. You’re talking…I’m just guessing four bucks a box. Maybe it was two bucks a box, maybe three bucks. Maybe my parents had tried it before. They were heavily marketing this back in the day.
Or at least…well, I also watched and consumed television twenty hours a day, so that could also have been part of it. I consumed a lot of commercials. Holy moly are you youth lucky. So, I had it in my mind, and I…so, I was sleeping over at my best friend’s house at the time, and I remember at some point I saw in their cabinet…and this is the kind of kid I was; I’m not…I was never…I’ve never…I will never come…claim to have been a good person or a good child. I was on the far side of precocious and not on the good side. You’d say well, we couldn’t call him precocious ‘cause that would be too much of a compliment. I’m not being facetious, either. But so, I saw the Grape-Nuts in the cabinet and I said oh boy, they got…this family’s got Grape-Nuts. I wonder if I could get myself some of those…and then I couldn’t stop thinking about it.
Another thing I do; obsess. So, I was obsessing about getting these Grape-Nuts. Eventually my friend fell asleep and I said, well…just like now, I couldn’t sleep, so I said maybe it’ll help if I fix myself a bowl of Grape-Nuts. Yeah, I was that kinda guest. If you’ve watched…I was like, Shellstrop-esque. I went downstairs, poured myself a gigantic bowl of Grape-Nuts ‘cause I was positive I was gonna love them. Like, literally, fourteen…like, 60% of the box into a bowl. Got the milk in there, ‘cause I never go halfway. Then I tasted the Grape-Nuts. Again, I could be wrong. They even looked good. I said, they must…this must taste just like some sort of…I thought it was gonna be some grapey granola. But I took a bite and I said oh boy, this isn’t for me.
Then I think I started looking for sugar to just at least…so at least I could eat a little bit of the Grape-Nuts that I poured that probably…it was probably…between the milk and the Grape-Nuts, you’re talking about five bucks. But it was not salvage…and then I got caught by one of the parents. They said, what are you doing down here? At that point I had already given up on the Grape-Nuts, so maybe…and then I…so then I also was unable to dispose of them with any dignity, which shouldn’t have been dignity ‘cause I was basically gonna throw them away and cover…so, another high point. But then I learned they don’t…Grape-Nuts, they weren’t what I expected. Not the fault of Grape-Nuts or the Grape-Nut…you know, whatever. Nobody’s fault but mine, as Led Zeppelin sang, I think. Oh, but you know what is my fault?
Is that I’ve got a sleep podcast that takes me forever to introduce. That’s kinda a couple things to know if you’re new. This is a podcast you don’t really listen to. It’s more background noise that keeps you company, as I said earlier, and I’m not really here to put you to sleep. I’m here to be your bore-friend, your bore-bae, your bore-sib, your bore-cuz, your bore-bestie, your bore-bor, your neigh-bore, your bore-bruh, your bore-friend. I’m here to keep you company whether you’re awake or asleep, so if you can’t sleep, I’ll be here, and if you’re not listening to me, I’ll be here, and if you’re barely listening to me, I’ll be here. If you’re tuning in and out or you wake up later, I’ll be here, or if you need a break during the day, I’m here to just barely take your mind off of stuff, to be a friendly voice. Relatable, right?
While you may have not had a Grape-Nuts incident, you probably had something similar. You know the look I got. It was…’cause who knows? It was probably between 1:00 and 4:00 in the morning. You say, you just wasted 75% of my Grape-Nuts, and the milk. So, one good thing I got…and that…one of the…the adult, they probably didn’t…they…I love Grape-Nuts. I said, this is the most disgusting thing I’ve…not talking about Grape-Nuts; I’m talking about my experience. I was a child, by the way. So, I’m talking to anybody that’s like, I can’t believe…nothing wrong with them. In fact, I’ll try to buy some. Remind me. I’ll have to wait ‘til they’re on Safeway special, ‘cause I don’t…I literally don’t buy…no offense, but I won't buy any cereal that’s not on Safeway special. It’s just a buying strategy I have.
I consider the Safeway special to be the actual price. So, that’s just me. How did we get here? Safeway’s the grocery store I go to. Oh, I was trying to say I’m just here to be your friend in the deep, dark night and to keep you company so you can fall asleep. I’m a misdirection, obviously. I’ve been misdirected since…if…when I follow my own direction, that’s where it gets me. But the good thing is, it’s useful for putting people to sleep. So, the other thing that throws people off other than it’s a podcast that doesn’t put you to…a sleep podcast that doesn’t put you to sleep, the original sleep podcast that doesn’t put you to sleep, it’s a podcast you don’t listen to, it’s also structurally different, but it’s intentional. So, the show starts off with a greeting; friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls.
I say something silly so you feel welcome, seen, and you say oh, this is…podcast’s a little bit lighthearted. Maybe I could get…maybe I could check it out. Then there’s support so the podcast can come out twice a week for free, so paying for it is optional, and it’s able to be free ‘cause of people that take us up on that option, which is amazing. Then there’s support for listeners who are having a tough time, and then there’s support for communities around the show. Then there’s the intro, which we’ve…I’ve probably been talking like, sixteen minutes. Not part of the support at all. The intro is a show within a show where I try to officially describe what the podcast is, and the next thing you know, I’m in a bowl of Grape-Nuts. For a regular listener, they really enjoy this, believe it or not.
‘Cause there’s people I know that are like…this podcast just isn’t for you, but I just want to tell you…‘cause you might be like, I don’t know if I could get into this or not. I say well, you’ll kinda get into it and you’ll take joy…I think it is a little bit…is that Schadenfreude? Like, you’d say…this may be…Sleep With Me…I don’t want to brag, but I’m…I can…I can’t be 100% positive that this is the first case of Grape-Nuts Schadenfreude…Schadenfreude, whatever you say, which even makes it more delightful that I can’t pronounce the word, but I don’t want to brag, but this may be the first…at least public case, I mean, other than the other times I did it, where you could laugh at my…until the…again, they say, the people versus…the people of Grand Rapids, Michigan versus Scooter, or whatever…wherever they…the great…where the great cereal barons are.
They have yet to get me yet, though, ‘cause I don’t have anything bad to say about it. Just my experience, again. I’m probably…most of the time I’m wrong. I mean, I’m positive that it didn’t taste like I expected it would, but I don’t think that was due to the advertising. It was due to my own interpretation of it. Again, I guess I probably owe that family. Here’s the thing; you want to fix it? Send that family a lifetime supply of Grape-Nuts. They may not…they said, you ruined them for me; no thank you. Okay, well…wow, we got deep there. Oh, so the structure of the show? Is that what I was talking about? Oh, the intro. Yeah, it goes on and on and on so the regular listeners, they get something new every time but in a familiar structure where I’m trying to explain to the new listeners what to expect.
But the intro also serves one more purpose, which…it’s not meant to put you to sleep; it’s meant to give you some distance between being awake and asleep, to be an interim period, to help be a part of your wind down routine. So, a few percentage of people fall asleep during the intro, which is great, or grape, we’ll say, in this case, and a few percentage of people skip the intro. But for most listeners, it’s part of their wind down routine. They may be getting ready for bed, they may be in bed getting comfortable, or they might be doing something else relaxing or quiet while they’re listening, to ease into bedtime. That is the goal of the intro. It’s also meant to be a little bit lighthearted and fun. You know, who would think that cereal Schadenfreude…I am a cereal Schadenfreude…not -ist, but a causer of it.
Cereal Schadenfreude; that could be…if I check into a…yeah, I’m looking for…did Cereal Schadenfreude check in? You say, actually, they are here. Can you spell that? Well, because they couldn’t spell it. Do you know how to spell the guest’s name? ‘Cause the guest couldn’t spell their own name. What do you mean you couldn’t spell Cereal Schadenfreude? I guess it could be three names; Cereal, Schadenfreude, Schadenfreude…yeah, maybe. I don’t know. Oh, that’s why the intro goes on and on and on, to ease you into bedtime. Then there’s more support for the show, and after the support is our story. Tonight it’ll be our episodically modular series, Nuns in Space, and that’ll be fun. Yeah, that’s the structure of the show, that’s why I make the show. Give it a few tries, see how it goes. I’m really glad you’re here. I really hope I can help you fall asleep, and here’s a couple ways I’m able to do it for you for free twice a week.
Alright everybody, it is time for our episodically modular series, Nuns in Space. This one is truly as episodically modular as they come. Each episode takes place in space. I don’t know why that made me laugh, because you could call anywhere space, right? But it does. I was laughing more ‘cause the title’s Nuns in Space. So you say, you’re kidding me; it takes place in space. You gotta be joking. Nuns in Space takes place in space. Holy cow. That’s news to me. You say, only on Sleep With…that does…that would happen on a normal podcast, but on Sleep With Me, it really takes place in space? I’ll say well, parts of it do. So, Nuns in Space is the tale of…there’s nuns, but actually the main characters are Stan, a freestyle soda machine, sentient being, nanobot abilities, and his best friend and sidekick, Scooter, who is roughly modeled on this podcast, and then the nuns from Scooter’s childhood.
Now, Scooter and the nuns from his childhood are on a spaceship together, heading somewhere. We don’t know where they’re going. Each episode starts procedurally, believe it or not, where everyone’s kinda restarting the day in a Groundhog Day-like way, except for Scooter. He remembers, but he’s been so occupied, he really…and this sounds like him, believe me. Instead of solving the larger problem, he’s…gets distracted by the procedure of the episode and the more pressing procedural issues, which normally there’s something that goes on on the ship, but also Stan is experiencing this loop, but in different places. Stan, who seems to have gotten some sort of demi-god-level powers, Stan keeps getting…now, Stan’s not on the ship. Stan will be somewhere and Scooter will have to go help him.
Each episode, Stan doesn’t really remember that it’s somewhat repetitive, but different every time, just like an episode of Sleep With Me. This is in our wheelhouse. Is it ever. So, that’s all you really need to know; outer space, free…loving, happy, freestyle soda machine named Stan was once just a mere droid, I think, but he’s always been Scooter’s best friend, particularly when he was just doling out soda, I’m sure, in the prequel years. Stan, the teen years; just a soda machine. It was the worst. It was like being a teen when I was a teen, teenage soda…I Was A Teenage Soda Machine; that was a famous movie in the forties, I think. Oh boy, did I love the…I remember the ‘45 or the ‘33 of that. I Was A Teenage Soda Machine; Donna and the Doo-Wops sang it. Yeah. Oh, and then there was Teenage Soda Machine.
That was the B-side. Actually, I don’t know if I prefer…that was a little bit more catchy. Anyway…oh, so Stan and Scooter, two best friends trying to do their best to solve the problems that come up in the episode, nuns in space headed somewhere in outer space. They need Scooter’s help. Oh, Scooter’s their only crew member. That’s why they always need his help. I think that’s it, other than the fact that you want to feel like you’re dreaming in outer space. If there was a musical…no kidding, I’m not joking; if there was a musical, I Was A Teenage Soda Machine, and there needed to be a heartthrob but not an antagonist, though we could cast against type…Henry Fonda did it, so Antonio Banderas could do it…would be Mr. Antonio Banderas, our Hollywood announcer.
The friends beyond the binary, the ladies, the gentlemen, the boys, the girls, it’s time to get spacey with Nuns in Space. Whoosh. Scooter, I would love to discuss this project, so…Nuns in Space. Thanks, everybody. Thanks, Antonio. We could talk about it over a cup…would you like a cup of tea or something maybe later? I’d love that. As long as you don’t move for the next…about sixty-eight minutes, I could arrange that. That’s Mr. Antonio Banderas, and this is Nuns in Space.
Okay Scooter, this is Stan here. Scooter, Scooter, I’m recording. Scooter, I think if I…I feel like if I repeat your name sometimes, maybe you’d hear me and be quicker to respond. But I wanted to catch you up on what’s been happening. I don’t know how this started again. I don’t know what keeps…something keeps happening, Scooter, and as you would say, I’m losing time. But this one is…Scooter, I’m in a pickle, but if it’s possible to be in a pickle where you created something more sour than a pickle…and I know you don’t like sweet dill pickles. You like saying sweet pickles because there was a TV commercial that you liked. You were never a sweet pickles member, but I know you liked that ad, Scooter. But I know you don’t like sweet dill pickles. Or is it sweet dill? You don’t like sweet pickles, Scooter.
You’ve made that clear. Stronger than dislike. But this could be worse than a sweet pickle, this pickle that I’ve found myself in. Much worse, Scooter, and I could use your help — if you’re listening — hello, right now, Scooter. No. Well, here’s what…Scooter, here’s as far back as I can go, which is strange. Scooter, I’m finding some limitations in my algorithms and I can’t find that they’re imposed limitations. It’s not a governor or…I mean, that my…I don’t know. But I was…the last…the farthest back I can go is I was on a ship. It doesn’t start there, though, Scooter. There’s stuff before it that I don’t know what was before it. But I’m on a ship. I feel very powerful. The ship is moving…it’s a huge, huge ship, Scooter. You would call it a…if…you would call it a space station if it was stationary.
In some sense it is both a ship and a space station, ‘cause ships are coming and going all the time. It’s a luxury…it’s…now, you don’t go on the ship to have luxury; you go to be processed and deliver…now, it’s luxurious, Scooter. Well, it was luxurious at the beginning, when I’m…or in the middle, wherever I started remembering. You would call…if…Scooter, I know you well enough that you’d call the ship the S.S. Pamper and you’d giggle, and you’d say does it come with a…? But it’s not like that. So, it’s a luxury ship, but not like in that…the great movie that I loved about love…Short Circuit. No, Scooter, I’m kidding. I meant…I was gonna say WALL-E. Just in case you were listening, Scooter. Scooter, I’m deflecting my feelings with humor. I don’t…have I done that before? Did you just see what I did, Scooter?
I was gonna say WALL-E and then I said I’m too vulnerable. Cover it up with a Short Circuit reference. Maybe I’m short-circuiting. Well, I don’t like it. I guess that’s why I’m covering up my feelings with…there’s something I don’t like. Well, there’s…and there was more things I didn’t like before I started pickling…creating pickles. Wait a second, I kinda have created pickles. Oh boy, I didn’t even think about that as a…Scooter, my subconscious is giving me ideas about things I’ve done. Okay, so what happened was I was on the ship. I was already in charge, plugged into the ship. The ship is using me; I’m using the ship. We are one. I have much more power than I’ve ever had before, Scooter, but not the kind of power you would imagine. I use a lot of power, so it’s not that kind of power. I’m not a power plant.
I do have some raw processing power, but I’m more of a…using my processing to delegate a lot of the processing. So, okay, maybe I can explain it better. So, all around everywhere, the universes, the galaxies, this ship is…and I guess it has…and I don’t know if I did this, Scooter. If I did, I was…that’s why I took some rash actions. So, on this ship you…if you…so let’s say you lived in Zizon 445 and you were a Kuberberb. Well, let’s just say you were a Qbert, because at least you’ll understand that. This is a whole universe or planet of Qberts, right? Goes great there, and it’s got a mixed economy, we’ll say. There’s some Qberts that are doing very well, and they say you know what?
I’d like this…I’d like the planet…there’s only a few parts of this planet that I really feel most comfortable in, which is true of most planets, Scooter. I say, I wonder if there was somewhere where that was really suited…climate-wise, Scooter, I’m talking about, but there are other variables…where a Qbert could live, a Qbert that’s done well, that’s at the top of the bouncy square…has bounced over everything, turned all the squares, checked all the boxes, as they say…is a world where I could live in luxury or pamp…like a pamper…to be pampered. These are called Pamper Zones, or that’s what I’m calling them, Scooter. I think they’re calling Optimal Living…I don’t know, it was…it’s all marketing, but we don’t do the market…we’re where the marketing is finished, and I don’t even know if the marketing…I don’t know, Scooter.
I don’t know if we’re a leading or a lagging indicator. But so, originally when I got here, that Qbert would pay a large sum of credits or whatever and sign a contract, come to the S. S. Pamper, and we would do a bunch of studies, find out all their interests and their climate and base…their basic biology, their history, and we would find where in the known galaxy…or if it’s not known, where most likely we could discover optimal places for this Qbert to live in luxury. Pamper Zones. So, this one we’d be look…you know, but every universe and planet’s different, and there’s different being…sentient beings on even the same planet. So, it does take a lot of processing power, a high cost. Also…so, I didn’t like it, Scooter. Once I became…I say well, what about all the other Qberts that want to live in a pamper-based zone?
Then when we go to these pamper regions, not everybody’s saying hey, fill us up with the richest Qberts. They say well, we don’t have a visitor-based economy. They would say well, you do now. We’re delivering forty-five Qberts. Again, Scooter, this is just an example. If you’re listening, don’t get caught up in saying is there a lot of flowering plants, or whatever questions you would have. Are there Puffs Plus in every room? Probably there are. That’s a good question, Scooter. With aloe, of course. But it’d be the Qbert equivalent, ‘cause you’re using your limited human scope to analyze the situation. Okay, so I wasn’t comfortable with that, and at some point I started to make changes. I said well, what if we process even more Pamper Zones? What if we up the…because they were limited.
Obviously this is…even with all the processing power…again, I said is there a way to make this more fair and find more Pamper Zones for more people? Then it became how…so then I realized I had some sort of gravitational pull, or the ship could. So I said, okay…so, I started to solve problems in the way of me finding Pamper Zones for everybody, Scooter; capacity on the ship, figure that out. Like, we’re pulling planetoids and asteroids with us. Processing power; we go to…now, this is…again, Scooter, I think I’ve lost my way. It does involve consuming some suns for the actual power. Now, we go to uninhabited regions, but then I…I don’t know. I say wait a second, Stan.
Then for the raw processing power, beyond what I can do, not everybody…now, there’s a time you gotta wait, and so, you will want to be in some sort of stasis a lot of times. A lot of…so, and then we said well, how can we make it fair for everybody? It’s like well, we’ll use you instead of a battery, like in the…that movie, and instead of a virtual world, they’re processing…trying to find pamper planets, but they’re just doing some raw processing. So, they’re not batteries, but all of our guests, when they’re in stasis, are…were…might…they’re not microprocessors, but they’re processors. Or you could just work on the ship. But most people choose the stasis. So then…okay, so a couple things happened, Scooter.
Now, we kept the ship…I said well, you could keep it for the elite people, and…but then they…some of the elites and the…whatever company or whatever was running this, they’re not happy with us, Scooter. But then even worse…now, I guess apparently I’ve been doing this a while, so I don’t know where you’ve been, but…so, it’d be nice if you were here and that you’re not…I don’t know, that you’re the Scooter I can imagine. Because if you’re some Scooter from the future, that would be…I didn’t even think about that, how much time’s passed. But again, I think time’s different. We’re traversing worm holes and those kind of things. Wait, does that mean more time went by? Maybe you’re…at least you’re with me in my heart, Scooter.
Okay, so the elites were upset, the company was upset, but worse than that, Scooter, as we started to deliver people to these planets…and I guess this happened with the elite people; they could just re-enroll. But we…people said, is that all there is? After a little while they’d say…and we said well, this is a zone on this planet in the entire universe optimally made for your enjoyment. You’re saying you’re dissatisfied? People…yeah, this is…Scooter, you…if we’ve done a billionth…they’d say yeah, I was expecting it to be a little bit nicer. Or yeah, it’s okay, but…or you know what I miss? And some of those people, Scooter, they get very…they’re…they’ve created a movement along with the elites in the company, and they’ve declared W-A-R on us.
So, we said wait a second, I brought you to the planet that’s perfectly suited to your comfort. There are people that stay and are very happy, then there’s people that say well, I’ll give it another try, but a lot of people, they get the…they’re steaming, Scooter. So, they’ve declared…now, the good thing is I’m pretty powerful and we have this whole universe we’re pulling along at this point, but I could use some help with this, because it’s taking more and more energy, and then I say eating suns or consuming them…not me, but it doesn’t feel okay. I need more help, even…I need people to help, but most people…I say, could you work on the ship? I don’t say it, again, but I’m saying…you know what I mean, Scooter. They choose stasis.
‘Cause I say, we could use the defensive team and…so, the more action I’m taking, Scooter, the worse seem…things seem to be going, and the more…I’m…it’s gotten very complicated. I realize that I’m kinda stuck, so I’ve stopped moving. But again, I feel like that’s gonna…so, I’m stuck, Scooter. I’m really stuck. I’m stuck, I’m stuck. Scooter, I’m stuck. Okay, Stan, Stan…oh, it’s another dream. I had a dream Stan was stuck in a door…I was trying to get Stan up to a…I don’t know why I would put Stan on the second floor of an apartment building, but got him stuck on the stairs, which doesn’t make sense, but it was a dream. But Stan was saying…Stan was like, Scooter, I’m stuck. Now it feels like the ship is jerking back…oh, yeah, Sisters, I’m coming to…yep, I’m…hello, Sisters.
Yes, I do feel the ship jerking back and forth; you’re reversing it and then going forward and stopping short. Okay, thank you, Sister. Oh, I can hear all those other ships honking. Oh yeah, so we’re at a red light. Oh, there’s a line of ships behind us? Okay, and what seems to be the…? Oh, the light’s been red for a long time? Okay, so should we just wait for it to change? Oh, okay, that…you don’t have to use those kind of words with me, Sister. So, the light…you don’t think the light’s gonna change. Okay. So…and the stoplight’s obviously linked to our system, so we can’t…there’s no override. That’s one of the brilliant things about this…these red lights. So, I would say one thing…one good news is people are honking at the red light and not at us, ‘cause otherwise they would…if they could override it, they would just go around.
Okay, well, it definitely can be frustrating. How about…here, Sister, do you mind if I…? Okay, you don’t want me controlling the ship. Okay. What if you just back up and try to go to the right a little bit more? Maybe it’s got a detector and you’re not quite…you’re in the right place? Okay, what if you try to move…what about on the left side? I know I’m pointing to the right and I’m saying the left, so that just happens with me. Sorry, Sister. Why don’t you try the other way, I meant? Okay, what if you back up a little? Can you inch forward a billion…? No, that’s as far as that’ll let you go. At least they’re giving you room to back up behind you. What if you try to come in at…? No, that didn’t work, either. What about the other side? Okay, nope. Okay…oh, so I should go out into space and fix it. Okay, great. Okay, I’m getting suited up now.
Something feels off, though. Okay, I’m out here, Sisters. I’m going out in space. I don’t know, something about the space…so…and still don’t understand where we’re going with the nuns. I know I have to find my way back to Stan, but I’ll probably have to fix this light first. Okay, I don’t see any buttons and don’t see anything…it’s perfectly sealed. I’m just gonna tap on it, wave in front of it. Okay, maybe if I kick it? It’s hard to kick stuff in zero gravity. Okay, please, please…can you please work, light? Hey light, can you hear me? Can you please work? Can you please work? Please, light. Okay, I’m gonna try to break it. Oh yeah, I do have this hammer. Okay, it seems to be indestructible. It can’t…please, please just…please change to green. Okay, no. I’ll try to break it. No…oh, wait a second?
What’s this on the back…is a call…repair call button. Okay, I pressed it, and it’s green. Okay, let me go back to…hey, Sisters, I’m back. So, the light…I hit the repair button and it sent out a call to be repaired. As I’m recalling, I remember when they…I mean, I don’t remember this, but so, it would make sense that…that would make sense, because if they tied all the stoplights to the vehicles’ drives, they’d have to keep the lights fixed, right? In order…otherwise everything would shut down every time a light broke, kinda like…yeah, Sister, just like this situation. I realize we’re in a hurry, Sister. Could you tell me exactly what we’re in a hurry for? Our mission. Which…? Oh, my mission is to serve…of course it is. Of course it’s to be the best and only crew member on this ship. So, living the dream. Okay, how long is it gonna…?
I don’t know how long it’s gonna take. Well, I don’t understand. I mean, I could go tape some tinfoil to the light to see if that speeds up its signal. Okay, I could go talk to the other ships that are honking, but you…Sisters, you all seem…this seems like it’s gonna not be good for your wellbeing, sitting here waiting for the light repair person to come, which is an indefinite period of time. Also, I’ve never seen…you’ve always…every time I’ve seen all of you, you’ve been driving the ship on a mission. This is the first pause in the action other than when stuff’s been malfunctioning. So, what if we go…Sisters, I got a great idea; we’ll go to…we’ll go greet all the other people on ships. You can tour the ships, and I don’t know, maybe that’s part of your mission, you know? These things happen that are out of our control, right?
Maybe it’s part of the bigger mission from the big light repair…you know, person who really controls the lights, am I right? Maybe. Okay, so I’m gonna go…oh wait, I’m…okay, I’m gonna use…hey everybody on the other ships. Yeah, the light repair person has prob…has been…the light repair button has been pressed and the light is green. So, I think it’s safe to say that yeah, no, I can hear everybody. This is like a Zoom, so I can see all your faces. A lot of beautiful beings out there. I mean, a lot of different types of beauty as well, and definitions of that word, loose and…you know what I’m saying. I’m here with my commanders who are Sisters, for…kinda complicated to explain. But I wanted to come up with some ideas to keep everybody…I was thinking…the Sisters wanted…what if we have…here’s a great idea; does anybody out there like desserts?
Raise your hand, ‘cause I muted you all. Luckily this is…you know they still have Zoom in the future. I would have never thought that. They still have mute…no, you’re not…you can’t unmute yourself. So please raise your physical hand or tentacle or your virtual one…whiskers, yeah, whatever, proboscis or whatever that’s called, for…wing, yep. Yeah, what…I don’t know if…yes, what…yeah, my…I have a limited vocabulary, even on Earth. So, anybody that likes dessert, raise your hand. Okay, I’m gonna create a breakout room where you’ll still be muted, and I’ll be there. Who likes beverages? Who’s good at drinking beverages or making them or has good beverages? Okay, cool. Okay, anyone good at cooking? We’re gonna make…we’re gonna do a progressive dinner. Any…? Okay, oh wow. Okay.
And, anyone good at games that are safe for everybody and fun for everybody? Games…those kinda games. We would call them board games on my planet. Yeah, okay. Okay, great. Wow, not very many…okay. So, hey everybody, even though you’re all in breakout rooms, I’m gonna contact you all from the main Zoom. You’re all gonna independently…we’ll have a dessert crawl where we could go from…people that like desserts, and this will be going on all the time until the light’s repaired. Dessert crawl, and then we’ll also do…oh, Sisters, you’re gonna…? Okay, we’ll do a beverage crawl for those who like different kinds of beverages, progressive dinners, pro…oh, I love it; progressive breakfasts and lunches, uh-huh, and board games. Yeah, like…oh, somebody else…performances. I love it.
Okay, I’ll do another breakout…a sub breakout room. So, I want all of you to organize that. Stay focused on that. It’s gonna be great. Hey, Sisters. Oh, so you’re gonna go get dessert? I don’t think they…I don’t…well…oh, they did. Oh boy, that looks good. I’m gonna head over there after a little while. Okay Sisters, I’ll see you. Well, that’s weird; they left me alone on the ship. I don’t even want to say what they were serving. It looked good, though. So, wow, that’s interesting. I’m alone on the ship. That never happened before. So, I gotta get…I know Stan’s needing my help somewhere, and I don’t know how long it’s…oh, so the mission log is there. What if I open…? Oh, the mission log is a hollowed-out book with some sort of…well, okay, so I’m gonna crawl in this hollowed-out book that has a portal in it.
At least this one was easy. Oh, hey, Stan. Scooter, where have you been? I’m stuck. Yeah, I know, Stan. Scooter, list…I want you to listen to this. It’ll catch you up on everything. Believe it or not, Stan, when I came through the portal, I heard a message from you. It felt like I was going through the portal instantly, but it was slow enough that I also could hear everything you said. So, I got an idea of…that you’re in a bit of a sweet and sour but mostly too sweet and not enough dill pickle. Scooter, you’re…yeah. It’s like I’m the center of gravity and I’m weightless and I’m numb, and it’s…the gravity’s pulling in and pushing at the same time. Yeah, I’m here to help, Stan. Also, they’ve…right between when I recorded that message and now, they’re…and because we stopped moving, the…all the…they’re organized, Scooter, the W-A-R, and they’re coming towards us.
Okay, and then what else happened after you knew that? Scooter, I got very upset. Okay, that’s understandable. Understandable reaction. I made an…oh, so I woke everybody up from stasis. They weren’t happy about that, Scooter. I told them the situation and they needed to help. Okay, and then what happened? Scooter, it didn’t go good. Some people were…they’re now in our universe working for the other side because they didn’t like me telling them what to do and saying that they needed to help. Then I tried to force people, Scooter, but I couldn’t figure out how to even…how to do that. Then I told them this is the right thing to do. We’re trying to take you to a place where you could be pampered or re-pampered. They said well, we were processing the whole time.
I say, processing has actually been shown to soothe and flush a brain. Other than that…they said, we don’t…so, those people also joined the other group. But most people said put me back in stasis. Okay, then what happened, Stan? Okay, then I tried to…I tried to reason with every…I said, I could put you in stasis, but what if there’s no…we may have to…if we can’t reason with…or deal with the opposition, there might not be any pampering to go around. Then they said well, I’ll just…then they got…and I said well, but a lot…most people said put me in stasis anyway. Then I tried to inspire them, Scooter. I tried to look up movies that you liked with speeches, and none of that worked. More people joined and they said, you’re trying to guilt us, here. I said, not really.
I’m trying to get you the most effective way to be pampered in the universe, and I just need you to do…just help out. Then I…Scooter, I used four-letter words. I told them to get their acts together. I told them to go to their rooms, but they wouldn’t be put in stasis without dinner. I said they’re the problem and they need to help us, but they don’t want to help. Then I cried, and I pretended…Scooter, I swear to god I did this; I cried with the mic open on purpose. I mean, I was really crying, but I pretended I didn’t know it was on, but I did know. Oh, so then you…you weren’t trying to guilt them, but you were guilting them, but you weren’t trying, then you did try. Yeah, Scooter, I did. I cried for purposes other than expressing my emotions.
But you were expressing your emotions; you were expressing frustration and overwhelming sadness. Then I said, I don’t understand. I’m just trying to get them to a pampered zone. Scooter, I even did the thing where you…’cause I was really doing it. Or to a new Pamper Zone, and I just need your help. Some of you, this is your third time ‘cause you got bored, and we’re running out of time and resources. It’s not fair. That’s true, Scooter. By all calculations…and I can do a lot of calculating, Scooter. I mean, by most calculations; I’d say all the calculations I can do, this is…you just…Stan, holy moly, do you realize how big this is? Yeah, Scooter, it’s a big problem. No, no, no. How big it is for…yeah, it’s a big deal to me, Scooter, yes. You don’t need to validate…you’ve been…I think you’re over-validating, Scooter.
I don’t need to be made aware of how tough the situation is and how I feel…Stan, that’s not what I’m…I’m not trying to validate you. I’m trying to point something out, that this is a major breakthrough. Scooter, you’re not an optimist. It doesn’t look good on you when you try to be optimistic, because it’s not…no, Stan, you’re not understanding me. You’re being reasonable and also totally delusional at the exact same time. Scooter, I feel like…what do you mean? Because I expect…oh, yeah, I’m being delusional and reasonable…I’m being delusionally reasonable or reasonably delusional. Scooter, I’m being both. Scooter, it feels…this feels awful. Right, Stan. You’ve been learning from your mistakes, but barely learning from your mistakes. Then most of the time you’re making things worse before you make them better.
Scooter, you’re right. Scooter, that bother…that…I’m hurt you’d say that. Right, and subject…my subjective truth or whatever you want to call it, objective…definitely not objective…hurts your…Stan, I gotta give you a hug. Oh, Stan. Oh, Scooter, you’re kissing and hugging me really in a genuine way. Yeah, Stan, because…I don’t know what happened, but something happened to you, and you’ve gone from sentient to…but I think we also…while you’re change…Scooter, I’ve gone…I’ve…I’m not an adolescent anymore, I don’t think. Well, you may be all things at once, but you’re going through something, and I can relate because I’ve been incredibly delusionally unreasonable and reasonably delusional my whole…every day of my life, Stan.
So, I can relate, and you’re…I’ve broken pickle jars and then not…then have been afraid to tell the person at…that I was the one who broke it. Sometimes I haven’t even told them and sometimes I said, somebody broke a pickle jar in Aisle 9. They say, somebody? I say, someone. You know, it could have been…I don’t know. Or I just exit the store and never return. I’ve done all those things, Stan. Wait, Scooter, were you the one that broke the pickle jar? Some of the times. Not all the time. Okay Stan, well, I don’t know what to do, then, because…well, we gotta assess where we are, I guess. So, I can relate, but actually I’ve never solved any of this stuff. I think you’re trying to…if you’re changing…it’s weird ‘cause you have demi-god-like powers, but you’re becoming more human.
Next thing you know, you’re gonna be…I don’t know. Stay away from coffee makers, ‘cause I don’t want you making an espresso maker that’s got super strength or magical hair or something. Scooter, I don’t understand. Yeah, don’t worry about it. Just don’t get…no dating until we get through this. Scooter, you’re con…okay, so I’ve confused you, so now we can reset things. So, we’ve got…we’re our own universe and you’re the…kinda the center of the universe, and we’re trying to get people where they think they want to go. We need a percentage of those people. A lot of them are passengers. Now, they’re…they…I don’t know the exact terms of exchange…of your expectations and stuff, Stan, but you expect…you’re expecting them to…it looks like your expectations and reality are not lined up, right?
You think you have reasonable expectations, and the place where the delusion’s happening is that you’re expecting that your reasonable expectations will be resolved or whatever. Every day of my life. Okay, so…and I can’t tell you if they’re unreasonable or reason…that’s…this is…that’s why it’s such a big…I’m really happy for you, but also I can see some of these readouts that we’re in a situation. So, I understand all the information you gave me, and I don’t think you’re…I don’t think…oh, let’s see. Here’s an idea, Stan, and it’s gonna take some time, so hopefully…I think the way time’s working is a little bit different, ‘cause I can see they’re close, but they’re still far away, the force that’s coming. If some of these readouts show people’s dissatisfaction, I think we still have a chance.
Now, the first thing you want to do is if anybody wants to return to stasis, just let them return to stasis, okay? But say hey, those of you that aren’t sure, we’ve got some new stuff we’re gonna try out. You could always return to stasis later, at any time you want. You know all that other stuff I said? I was going through something. Just be honest with them. But just…you don’t have to go into too many details. Just say hey, I was having a tough time. I apologize for all those ultimatums and say we’re gonna do some stuff, and we’re gonna start pampering you and…yeah, let’s start a pamper tour and be like, who wants to be pampered by Stan and Scooter?
Now, we only have…we’ll have a limited menu, but we’ll go around and do some interviews, and the thing is, Stan…and I mean, I guess it must show that I’m in total delusion and no reasonable…he’s like, we gotta have fun doing it and embrace it fully. When people ask, say okay, what we’re gonna…we’re pamper those people that are coming towards us. That’s how we’re gonna deal with this, is we’re gonna find new ways to pamper, because we think our vision of pampering was limited. Scooter, can I ask you a question? Yes, Stan. I would like…of course I would…I don’t think I’d actually want to wear a pamper, but of course I…yeah, we’ll do it in pampers. But only in our minds. Okay, Scooter, that was what I thought. So, we’ll start…yeah, so we’re gonna start touring.
We’re gonna gather all this pamper information we can, and Scooter, I’ve started to do that without…as you were talking, because again, I have…okay, and what percentage…how are we looking? Scooter, some people did return to stasis, some people are still very upset, and they’re planning on joining the other force. Some people said hey, what are you talking…? We’ll be pampered. Okay, so…and if you started the pampering and…Scooter, I have, because I have so many…yeah, I know. You’ve got some powers that are beyond my understanding right now, Stan. So, as you pamper them, let’s start to bring in the people that are really upset and offer them ultimate pampers, but also see if the people you’re pampering…say can you help me understand…we could use some help pampering these other guests.
If they say why, just say okay, because it’s fun. We’ll see how it goes. Okay, Scooter. Scooter…okay, they’re…it’s taking a little bit more effort to pamper them. Okay, and then…so, see those other people? Say oh no, no, you don’t have to be pampered. You don’t have to like this. See if they’re still interested in joining the other forces. That’s fine. Tell them that’s fine. You do what you want to do, but we’re doing this new pamper thing, and we’re really getting into it. Scooter, it’s catching on. No, Scooter, on a small percentage, though. Okay, right, and we still have the…so you’re readjusting the calculations as we’re learning more. Scooter, it’s like some sort of incremental change. Like, only a tiny percentage of people more are saying hey, we’ll pamper on the way to pamper.
Right; it’s like the joy…it’s the joy of pampering, but no one’s locked in. It’s not like a job. This is 100%…so, now what we’re gonna do is we’re gonna start calling the other…the approaching ships, I’m sure with your superpower. Also, they must know that…holy cow, Stan, can you analyze…as they’re coming in, start to analyze if they’re made up of…did you leave any rocks or asteroids behind? Scooter, I did, as people chose not to join us. Yeah, they were a second…yes, yeah. Okay, and they’re with that…okay, so tell them to expect positive surprises and start to recruit people on the ship that are already into this pampering. We’re gonna do what’s called the surprise pampering, or surprise luxuriating.
We’re gonna go and…I don’t know how…do you have any of that Star Trek type stuff where we could just appear on other ships? Scooter, yes. Okay, but communicate with them first and get a gauge of like…Scooter, I’m understanding. So, we’re trying to figure out ways to do nice things for our…for the people that are approaching, but they don’t even know it was us, but they might have a general idea. But then…but with no expectation they’re gonna change their mind or anything. Right; we don’t care. Scooter, why is that? I don’t know, ‘cause it’s fun. It’s fun; we’re getting away with something. We’re getting away with doing something nice and we’re sneaking it by that part of us, like you said, that has the…that’s reasonably delusional or unreasonable…reasonable delusion and delusion with reasonability.
Like, we’re getting away…we’re…this is a different…it’s not like that. It’s beyond…that’s like a switch. Then you realize oh, the switch isn’t connected, like a red light. Scooter, I don’t think…I kind of understand. Scooter, it’s kinda working. They’re wondering…the sentiment on the approaching ships is changing. Not drastically, but slightly. Okay Stan, and invite them in and say hey, yeah, we’re stopped here and if you want to tell us…if…’cause Stan, I think we have to just invite them in and say if you’re upset with us, we’ll hear about it. Scooter, can you tell me why? So Stan, I have this strange feeling that one, you have experienced a new phase of growth, but you know, that at some point there was all this delusion spread around the galaxy, and there’s things going on that you don’t remember, right?
But I remember that things are going on. Scooter? So, there’s…we’ve been stuck in some sort of loop over and over again. I’m on a ship with nuns going somewhere, and even I’m not clear on our entire history, but I do know that there’s all this delusion scattered around the galaxy that we…that needed to be collected, or maybe it didn’t need to be collected, but I think we have been collecting it, and I think that we’re supposed to just stay here and resolve this. Scooter, I think it’s kinda resolving itself, but it’s not gonna be resolved. Right. But some people, it’d be resolved, and then we’ll move onto the…but then, not everybody’s…we know not everybody’s gonna be happy, and that’s what you’re saying is gonna…Scooter, yes.
But we also have to, I think, get everything gathered here, because we may be able to find which asteroids and rocks and planetoids are made up of pure delusion, or ships are. But for now I think I gotta go…I gotta rest so I can see if the light changed, and it’s in…Scooter, I should rest too, ‘cause I’ve been processing a long time. Yeah, let’s take a rest, Stan. I’ll hug and kiss you again ‘cause I’m so happy that you thought you were being reasonable, and you were, and you were being delusional. I love you, Stan. Scooter, I love you, too. Thanks for pointing out that it’s okay for me to be sensitive and delusional and reasonable all at once. Yeah, no problem. Stan, it takes a expert to know one. Scooter, just ‘cause you do something all the time doesn’t make you an expert. Stan, you’re so funny. It makes me love you more. Goodnight, Scooter. Goodnight, Stan.
[END OF RECORDING]
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Hi, you can call me Scooter.
Drew Ackerman is the creator and host of Sleep With Me, the one-of-a-kind bedtime story podcast featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, Buzzfeed, Mental Floss, and NOVA. Created in 2013, Sleep With Me combines the pain of insomnia with the relief of laughing and turns it into a unique storytelling podcast. Through Sleep With Me, Drew has dedicated himself to help those who feel alone in the deep dark night and just need someone to tell them a bedtime story.