The Craziest Dreams

Walking back to my car from the post office on Saturday morning, I heard someone calling my name. I squinted in the sunlight, recognized a former coworker who lived a few towns away, and headed over to say hello. When our conversation concluded and I resumed walking, someone else called my name. The guy looked kind of familiar as I shook his hand, like I'd know him if he looked...smaller? We spoke for a bit as he asked me how things were going and what I was up to, so finally I had to ask who he was. “Angelo!” he replied, which narrowed his identity down to one of two Angelos, both of whom I hadn't seen since the eighth grade. I'm pretty sure I know which Angelo it was, though a lot can change in twenty years. I have no idea how he recognized me. Maybe he heard my other friend call me by name, or maybe there aren't that many fat, scarfaced Italians running around this area. Perhaps I haven't changed at all in twenty years, and suddenly I'm paranoid about the time I posted baby pictures, or worse my toddler photo. In any case, the sequential encounters with faces from the past was surreal, a blending of reality usually reserved for dreams, though not as strange as some of my recent nocturnal excursions.

I've always had the craziest dreams, and always found them more interesting than the tedium of reality. When my head hits the pillow, it's like I'm diving in to another world. I love going there and hate coming back. In dreams there are no limits, and time is fluid. I'm not sure why, but something about the Summer makes me dream more. My theory is that I'm overstimulated from busy weekends with the bands, and my neurons are firing with a lot more information to process.

A few weeks ago, I had a dream in which I was walking along a bridge under heavy construction. Parts of the geography resembled a portion of my morning commute to work, though it was all clearly transplanted from Nassau County to Brooklyn. Waiting on the sidewalk next to an out-of-place escalator, I was suddenly hugged by our drum player's mentally challenged sister. It disturbed me, because even in the dream I clearly remembered she was dead. She got sick a few years ago, and one night her lungs finally filled with fluid and she basically “drowned” in the family's kitchen. It was a tragic loss for her father, our band leader, and the rest of her family. Her brother has her name tattooed on his arm and still carries her photo in his wallet. But in my dream, she was alive and well and ready to play the bass drum as she last did five years ago.

I realized we were all gathered to meet a tour bus, and noticed that a female cop across the street riding a Llama was waving us over. We crossed the street, nearly getting hit a few times, and as I got closer I saw that the llama was riding a bicycle. The woman, clearly Leslie Easterbrook in her role as Callahan from the Police Academy series, dismounted and held the bike with the llama over her head with her right hand and waved us on to the bus with her left. Our drummer was sticking twigs into the hubcaps of passing cars, and giggling about how when he was a little boy it would jam the wheels but now that everything is plastic the hubcaps just broke. I didn't mention that I'd seen his sister, as she seemed to vanish from the dream as though my brain was correcting “reality” about remembering her status. It was all very bizarre.

I awoke from the dream, went on to an actual band job in reality, and told the band leader and his son about the dream(leaving out the cameo appearance by their lost family member, of course). A few days later, my subconscious got creative again. I found myself sitting on a park bench in the zoo where our band had last performed. It was still extremely hot, which I deduced by my attire, the same old pair of shorts with a Yankees logo that I was sleeping in. I'm modest to the point that I won't take off my shirt at the beach, and Long Island can all breathe a collective sigh of relief at that.

I was talking, elaborately explaining some comic book, movie or television show in trademark excruciating detail. I reclined with one arm along the back of the bench, and generally addressed any passersby. A pretty brown-haired girl in a fuzzy pink sweater, clearly overdressed for a heatwave, sidled up and sat on the bench, gazing with fascination as I stared ahead and continued my story. She was twirling my chest hair, and while Long Island again breathes a sigh of relief at the shirt-on-the-beach thing I apologize to my readers for including that detail in my story. Fortunately for you and unfortunately for me, the dream took a strange turn.

I didn't want to stop talking because I was afraid the girl snuggling up to me would leave, but I lost my train of thought and she was gone, as was the sun. The animals, many of whom were loose and had gathered to hear my tale, suddenly scattered. Slowly I allowed my eyes to venture left, where a large lion stood imposingly while the other creatures fled in terror. ”Walk away slowly,”, I murmured. “Don't make any sudden movements or show fear, because they can--” At this point, the beast pounced and I sat bolt upright in bed. It was time to go to work anyway, so it was just as well the dream had turned. It was easier to leave a ferocious lion behind than a pretty female companion.

This brings us to my latest weird dream on Saturday morning. This time, I found myself in the country somewhere, maybe upstate New York or someplace further. It was late in the afternoon, and I'd just finished another band job. My dad and another musician headed for the car while I told them I'd be along later. I had my arm around a petite, pretty Italian girl, and we were heading in to a renovated barn to see the new Police Academy. Which part of that statement proves I was in an alternate reality, the fact that Police Academy 8 actually happened or that I actually got a date? I kept nibbling her ear and blowing in it while she pushed me away but eventually leaned closer to me. I suspect I was influenced from watching Nine 1/2 Weeks before going to bed. For whatever reason, Kim Basinger kept giving in to Mickey Rourke, even when he was being a downright sophomoric and abusive jerk. Granted, back then he looked less like Marv and more like a cross between Ioan Gruffudd and Jon Bon Jovi, but I've never understood why women will choose a good-looking jerk over say a Jack Black type who makes them laugh and puts them on a pedestal. I just didn't get how Rourke would whisper something that would demean Basinger, she'd say no at first, he'd whisper “C'mon, please?”, and she'd completely melt. I feel like I'm going way off on a tangent here, though.

The barn/theater was a cozy place and more like a house with a lot of large flat screen televisions than an actual movie theater. We found a bench in one of the side rooms, and cuddled up to enjoy Mahoney's latest antics. For a first date, I felt surprisingly comfortable and at ease, and was sure I could get a kiss. I leaned in, and she leaned back, tapping me on the nose with the tip of her finger and whispering she'd be right back. I continued watching the movie, which suddenly seemed like a bad idea and wasn't as funny as its predecessors. After about half an hour, I decided to look for my date. I couldn't find her, but as I walked past the main room with the larger television, I noticed my parents were in the audience. All eyes were on the screen except theirs, which glared at me in disapproval. I realized I'd left my dad and another musician stranded out in the parking lot while I'd taken the keys to the car and went to a movie with a girl I'd just met, who had now vanished. I woke up at this point, and sighed, “What the hell was that?”

My brain is seriously screwed-up sometimes, but at least it entertains me. Who knows where my dreams will take me next?


Blogger Lorna said...

If I dream the same thing, or variations of something several times, I start to pay attention and see what I'm trying to tell myself. That's why I became a folk-dancer at 37, why I finally agreed to buy a house and why I'm growing my grey hair down my back in what I fear is an age-inappropriate fashion. Listen to yours---or at least keep blogging about them. They're fascinating, although I could have done without the twisted chest hair.

6/23/2008 12:10 AM  

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