Friday, February 06, 2009

Dreams Words Dreams

By Pauly
Hollyweird, CA

The familiar faces, random street scenes, haunting images come and go. Like a police car speeding down the street in hot pursuit of a criminal. You can hear the vociferous sirens from several blocks away as the whaling sounds grow louder and louder until the deafening sirens reach an apex in front of your house and the windows shake for a few seconds before volume of sounds slowly decrease until the sirens become nothing more than a faint whisper.

I had one of those turbulent nights. Unable to sleep because I was not tired, but totally exhausted from the lack of rest. Sleep. The other journey that we undertake on a nightly basis. Some of us brazenly jump into the other world for eight or ten hours a day. And the bizarre thing about that? You can vaguely recall a couple of minutes of those numerous hours of down time.

Why is that? Why is it so hard to recall your dreams? And why is it that the magnificent ones that you recall seem so fuckin' boring to the person you told it to?

Ah, what dreams may come. I kept detailed accounts of my abnormal dreams from different eras in my life. The first venture into dream journals occurred when I scribbled down dreams on index cards during college. It was a life-altering exercise that I got into a habit doing around my the first part of my junior year. At the same time in my personal life, I began experimenting with psychedelics mostly while following the Dead around, and the index cards were my little reminders of the insanity that transpired while my brain was friend and I was so far gone on the other side that I could only muster up obscure phrases and a handful of buzz words which were my only clues to what it was like during my perplexing journeys into the other world.

The index cards were like a trail breadcrumbs that I left behind as I passed over the bridge from sane to insane. I needed clues on how to find my way out just in case I crossed over the edge.

A rubber band held the group of index cards together. When I left Atlanta and returned to New York City after graduation, I tossed the cards in a box and took them with me.

My dreams were always random. Peculiar. But most of the time, they were totally boring. After college, I met an angry French woman who spent most of her mornings analyzing her dreams from the night before. She gave me dozens of books about the subject of dreaming including dream encyclopedias which gave you detailed explanations of certain symbols and objects in your dreams. My favorite batch of books involved lucid dreaming and exercises that you had to do in order to take control of your dreams during the sleeping life.

The angry French woman was convinced that if she could unlock the darkest secrets in her dream life, then she could achieve greatness in her waking life. As an artist she relied heavily on what her psyche told her to paint. Of course, she was stuck in a stagnant place, which is suicide for an artist. A painter who never painted. Just another malcontent pissed off at the world. She was raised on hate and cigarettes. Perhaps that's why she never evolved as an artists and her talent sputtered in the mid-1990s as she was bogged down into a depressive funk for the entire time we knew each other.

She was unable to make sense of her every day life because she became too obsessed with trying to analyze all those little things in her dreams that she was convinced were symbols. Road signs. We're all on a journey through life and some of us get more lost than others. She, oh my, she was the most lost soul that I ever encountered. No wonder. All those meaningless dreams drove her insane trying to figure out what every little thing meant. Sometimes a cat in a dream is just a cat and not about her losing her intuition. As that cokehead Freud once said, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."

I should be sleeping right now at the 5am hour and whisking myself away into slumberland where the streets are made of dark Belgium chocolate and sometimes I can fly. Most of the time, I can never seem to get to where I want to go in my dreams and the food tastes bland. Seriously, do you eat in your dreams? You can't taste the food, can you? Next time you have a dream remind yourself to focus on the food. It's has no taste. I never figured out why.

Sometimes I dream in black and white. I was told that schizophrenics only dream in black and white and that the truly clinically fruitcakes lack color in their dreams. Sometimes the lights in my dreams give off unconventional hues, like lots of glowing greens from street lamps. Spooky.

Maybe I'm not crazy and I'm totally sane and everyone around me are the freakazoids. Everyone is running on triple A batteries and I'm a double A kinda guy. The one-eyed man is the king in the land of the blind.

The silence of the 5am soothes me. The absence of noise intoxicates me. All I can hear is the low hum of the refrigerator. Oh, and the clicking sounds of my fingers pecking away at the keyboard. Sometimes I have to listen to music with my headphones at this hour because I don't want to disrupt my neighbors or Nicky.

So I sit in the darkness. The only light? The luminous screen on my laptop. I peck. I hunt down the meanings and the symbols and constantly check the road maps. I'm on my way. I'm almost there. I just need a little more time to get there. And I think that I'm going to have to shut up for a while so I can concentrate on the next few steps in my journey.

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