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Two Short Dreams: Stranger Chainsaws and the Raining Garage


In some version of our backyard in Paris. One of my sisters had invited a weirdo over, and he was obsessing about a tree that was growing crookedly in the neighbor's yard. He wanted to cut it down. Against my pleas, my sister gave this wartyish guy Dad’s chainsaw. He reached over the fence with the chainsaw, sawing at the tree and it crashed down against the neighbor's house. In a frenzy, the dude began to cut at the fence with the chainsaw, slobbering, whipping it around like it was plastic toy, until my sister knocked him in the head and it whipped out of his hands backward at me, falling just inches from my feet.


I’m in a huge, empty garage. Everything inside has been packed up by my family and put in a van to move. They did this while I was sleeping, and nobody tried to wake me up to ask me to help, and I feel guilty. It’s raining in the garage, and there are puddles of gasoline scattered all around. I am alone except for a toddler boy wearing a raincoat, and a car with its headlights pointed in my direction. I’m supposed to be watching the kid. I think he’s my brother. His name is Aggie. A beautiful woman I love in the dream is behind the wheel and her mother-in-law is in the passenger seat. They are both watching me quietly. The toddler runs all around the wet garage, laughing and slipping on the concrete. It’s very dangerous. I dart towards him, carrying both a lighter and an enormous iPhone. The kid runs in front of me, so I grab for him, which throws the lighter and phone in an arc to land in a puddle of gasoline. I slip in the rain, falling, and the back of the poor toddler’s head smacks gruesomely against the concrete. He cries pitifully as I search the back of his head for blood, but I’m also distracted by searching for my phone and seeing that my lighter has ignited several puddles of gasoline. The woman in the car switches on her brights and starts the engine. The toddler starts to sob and shout, both cute and horrifying, “AGGIE DEAD! AGGIE DEAD!”
The fire grows brighter.

Dream: Confectionary Papist Time Machines

Dream April 13, 2020

Had the weirdest dream recently that I worked in the same office block as a professor in a business college. Our offices were adjacent and open to each other. He had a floating briefcase, and he was also the gatekeeper to a time machine on the other wall of his office, which was a circle at the end of a ramp. People came to ask him questions before they used it. I’d watch the far wall morph into long ago and far future times and places and the people vanish through the circle. One day I got up my nerve. He wasn’t in his office that day, so to summon him, I carried his floating briefcase out into the hallway and back inside the office and he appeared at his desk.
“I want to use the machine,” I asked.
“Okay, where do you think is the most crowded place at any time?”
“The beach.”
“That’s boring. You need to go to Vatican City at any time before 1000 AD.”
“Because the Popes are working on time machines that are supremely more advanced than anything I have. I need you to go there through my special time cannon.” He stepped away from his desk and pointed to the front wall, and a shelf appeared, a perfect square of nine square shelves, each one holding a basketball. “You will stand in front of the time cannon, which will send you to a special time in Rome, probably 337 BC, where the Pope is creating a mind-boggling time machine ENTIRELY OUT OF SUGAR. Sugar!”
I did what he asked and the far wall transformed into a view of the flowing Tiber and a cluster of buildings on the far side. The basketballs exploded and the gatekeeper screamed, “They are made out of sugar!”

Sang Today.

I sang today for the first time in a long, long while, and it made me cry.

I'm not very good, but I can carry a passable tune. More importantly, it's a part of me that I was always proud of, that I cared about, that I knew intimately. Any talent I have comes from my Mother, who sang beautifully in our home all the years my brothers and sisters were growing up.

And when I sang today, I thought: why have you forgotten this room in your heart? Why did you abandon a place you loved?

banal whaterperk dream

Dream Monday December 2, 2019

I had a dream that I was supposed to meet you and Dad at a waterpark somewhere in Ohio. I went there, looking for you two, and finally found you, but you kept leaving and I lost you. The park was a horror; people were getting in fights and killing each other. Also, the water people were getting stuck in water park machines and were getting crushed and dismembered. Corpses floated all over the place, and the employees used the bodies to scare people and tried to terrorize me with one. I kept trying to call Dad, but it never connected and I learned that you had left. I walked to a C-store at the edge of the park and bought a huge case of water. Instead of shopping carts, they had donkeys. And the donkey simultaneously tried to cuddle and to kick me in the face. It was getting dark and I was lost and I started to panic, then made a decision to get a hotel room and leave the next day in full light.

I promise I wasn't eating from there.

One day some time ago, my toilet became clogged for mysterious reasons. It wouldn’t flush properly but didn’t overflow. Nothing was going down there anymore. Luckily, I have a backup toilet, but this toilet is my favorite, so I had to get it fixed. I called the maintenance man and when he arrived, explained the problem and went to run some errands.

When I returned the maintenance man was gone and my favorite toilet was fixed. He had left the work order on the counter, which was pinned down by a gigantic spoon. On the order he had written, in huge handwriting that had obviously been mutated with amazement, terror, and disgust:


Oh no.

As soon as I saw the spoon, I remembered. A few days before, I had dumped a large storage container of objectionable pumpkin seeds, thinking stupidly, this is a good idea, they will decompose faster. I had forgotten there was a big ‘ol soup spoon I was using for a scoop buried in the seeds. The toilet swallowed seeds and spoon, and choked on the spoon.

Oh no.

So now I imagined this poor maintenance man’s surprise and horror, finding a spoon in my toilet. This man thinking, why did this thing happen? Why does he need a spoon in there, so close to a toilet, and then, IN THE TOILET? Is he eating . . . IS HE EATING IN THERE, FROM THERE? What is he eating from there? Oh my God. THERE WAS A SPOON IN THE TOILET!!!!

Oh no, I promise, I promise!, I was not eating from there.

I hope he didn’t tell anyone, like I just did.

Quick Napdream: Furnace Dog and My Unstarted Final Project

took a nap today and had a dream that I was taking a creative writing class and the semester was close to over and my final project was due. I hadn’t done shit. I went to a bar where my teacher was bartender to talk to him about it, but he was inaccessible. There was a dog in the bar which was playing with a stick. I accidentally tripped over the stick and the dog subsequently stalked and attacked me. While I was trying to talk to my teacher, it stood straight against the bar and barked and snarled, biting me. When it snarled, its torso became hot like a furnace and burned my leg. Its teeth ripped and shredded my hands and arms, and I asked bartender teacher, (who had turned into Hugh Jackman as Wolverine), for a knife. I had to cut the dog into pieces until only its head remained on the floor. It continued to snarl, and each time my entire body burned as if I had fallen into a deep fryer. This dream was like a village on a world map of dreams, so many things going on. Fun!

Not My Long Dream

Not My Long Dream

He really had to poop, and it was hard sloshwalking through the two feet of water that had pooled in the cruise ship’s foredeck ballroom. So far, all his tries to relieve himself in the men’s toilets had gone like this:

He pushes open the door, feeling like his butt is going to explode, and the restroom is crammed with high school kids dressed for prom. They are standing along the walls, and multiple pairs of dress shoes are shuffling within the stalls. The bathroom reeks of cologne. There is no toilet available to him. At regular intervals, a senior emerges from one of the stalls, holding up a tuxedo while smiling lasciviously at his reflection in the mirror. He says to his fellow students: “I’m going to get so much pussy tonight!”

The women’s toilets were locked.
As he splashed his way toward the atrium, hoping for relief, he wondered why he was alone on this cruise. He vaguely remembered boarding the ship with friends and family, but they were nowhere in sight.
The flooded deck was crowded with lovers, who floated in the shallow water, locked in embrace as they made out. One large woman drifting on her back against the stairs held a small man on her belly like a bear cub. She winked at him over her lover’s head, but he didn’t feel sexy right now and kept walking to an elevator.
The elevator opened automatically and it was dry. The lift attendant smiled at him politely.
“On which floor is the closest toilet?” he asked the attendant, stepping inside.
The man jumped out of the elevator into the water, turning around and reaching to push a button on a panel. “This will take you to the Public Restroom on shore.”
The doors shut and the walls and floor became transparent. A rotor blade popped out of the elevator’s roof and unfolded, spinning the car away from the ship. A helicopter tail grew from the rear and the craft flew towards a low, concrete building on the shore of the bay in which the ship was anchored. A DING! sounded from the operations panel and a tray with an empanada slid out of a hole. It looked good, and he was hungry, but he ate a meat pie from the buffet earlier, which he suspected someone touched after using the toilet and not washing their hands. Thus, his dilemma. He did a poopy dance as he watched the ship retreat, finally fully remembering his companions on the cruise. They were in the cigar bar, waiting for him. His sense of urgency increased.
The trip in the helivator was fast, and it landed on an oil-stained square of concrete at the top of a filthy stairwell that led down to the restrooms. The helivator doors opened and a gust of air pushed at his back, shoving him out. He tripped on a lump of gravel and fell down the stairs to the bottom, smashing face first into an olive tree, which sliced open his cheek.
“Dude, what the fuck are you even doing? That’s not how you take the stairs. You better hurry up, cause this is the last shuttle back to the ship before it leaves harbor.”
Grabbing the tree trunk, he pulled himself to his feet, worried that he’d shat himself.
A man in his late twenties sat in the bow of a small rowboat, grinning at him. The boat was hitched to a tiny dock situated across the way from the restrooms. A few teenagers sat in the boat facing him, laughing.
“Seriously,” the young man said. He pointed to the cruise ship which loomed in the distance beyond a cluster of trees that appeared a cross between mangroves and royal palms. “We gotta go.”
“Okay! Please, I just have to use the bathroom.” He ran into the restroom and ran out, feeling relieved but disappointed that he didn’t remember what happened there.
The rowboat in the small inlet had lost its oars and now had a tiny outboard motor, which was chugging along pushing the boat away from the dock.
“Wait!” he yelled, jumping into the water to grasp a steel bar welded behind the rearmost bench in the boat. The man and the teenagers looked at him silently. He pulled himself to the left, kicking his legs away from the propeller. He tried to haul himself onboard, but wasn’t strong. The blade of the propeller bit into his shin and he screamed.
“Please help me.”
One of the teenagers said, “You should be stronger. Try pulling harder.” All three passengers turned away from him to look ahead to the ship.
He grunted and was finally able to pull himself onto the stern. He rested for a moment with his face mashed down on the boat’s floor, then slid his legs inside. His right shin was cut deeply, but instead of blood, a thick white substance like caulk filled the wound. He settled on the back bench; the other passengers ignored him.
The boat shuddered and lifted from the water to fly into the massive canopy of strange trees. It drifted at an angle higher and closer to the cruise ship through branches the size of redwood trunks and flat leaves as large as basketball courts. The branches and leaves extended all the way to the ship, arching over and casting shadows on its vast foredeck.
The small craft landed on an enormous leaf several hundred yards away from the ship. Hanging from branches above the leaf were what looked like acrobat swings, a line of them stringing from branches in a succession down and down to the cruise liner.
The laughing captain of the rowboat-turned-aircraft and his teenage passengers got out quickly and immediately leapt to the hand bars, swinging themselves with great accuracy and power lower and lower towards the ship.
Swing. Release. Drop. Grip. Swing. Release.
He stepped out of the boat onto the spongy leaf and approached one of the hanging swings. A great roaring horn blasted from the cruise liner, signaling its imminent departure. He watched as the now tiny figures of the man and teenagers dropped from the last swings onto the deck of the ship. A large crowd surrounded them, but they were too far away and small to see if any of those faces were of his friends and family.
He glanced up at the hand swing.
“All this for a shit,” he said. “A shit I don’t remember.”
He jumped and grabbed the bar, swinging his legs back and forth to gather momentum. Terrified, he focused on the next swing below, throwing himself forward as hard as possible, letting go.
Falling, his chin clanged against the lower bar and he bit through his tongue. Blood filled his mouth as his head slipped off the swing and he fell, hands clutching at nothing, sinking, sinking, sinking through the branches and leaves.
He landed on concrete instead of water. But the concrete was soft, merciful, hugging his side and wounded leg like the gentlest foam. He rested there for several moments, wanting to sleep.
The horn roared again, and he stood, looking around. No water. No ship. He was in the middle of a parking lot that seemed to stretch miles in every direction, empty except for himself and a bus. He was behind the bus, shrouded in its exhaust. Coughing, he walked around and went up the steps.
The bus driver kept his eyes forward. A few extremely elderly women sat at the front of the bus, bundled in coats designed for the Arctic Circle. Their eyes looked him up and down, then ignored him.
The back of the bus was scattered with what looked like corpses, but they were mannequins.
Mannequins of people almost ready to die.
He sat in one of the back seats, next to the plastic re-creation of a young man on the verge of suffocating. Its eyes were a calm blue amid a face distorted by a desperation to breathe.
“Where is this bus going?” he asked the driver.
“One way to Evansville, Indiana. No stops.”
“Okay,” he said.

Dream Over