Halloween dreams.

I dreamed that I had found a website that looked at first as thought it was the usual unpleasant sexual tourism thing, guys visiting impoverished countries to do nasty things. But it was worse. It was a cannibalism tourist site, where you could arrange to visit places so benighted that they’d sell you their children and you could eat them.

The site was disguised as a kind of crackpot medical clinic called the California Creative Radiology Institute.

I think this is the first actual Internet nightmare I’ve had!

Where am I and why is this lion sniffing me?

I just read a good post by genericus about dreams which got me thinking.

I don’t often remember my dreams now. I think this is probably a result of sleeping better, since as I understand it you remember the dreams if you wake up afterwards for a bit, and they tend to fade otherwise. In general, though, my dream life has been unremarkable and kind of boring. Mostly I just get the same three or four classic anxiety dreams about school or travel or money problems. They’re annoying but not nightmares.

When I was a young child I had very unpleasant nightmares. Many of these were fever dreams during some childhood “stomach flu” fever. Almost all of them had the odd feature of being wordless and in fact free of story or reason. I would just be seized with terrible fear and anxiety. Sometimes it took forever for my parents to get me out of this state. I couldn’t go back to sleep, and an oppressive horror of everything seized me. One frequent hallucination in this situation was that I was responsible for holding the entire universe in my hand, and it was at once somehow tiny and very heavy. Almost always, though, it was just the Nameless Dread. For a few hours at a time. Boy did that freak out my parents!

I had one very good, very detailed, and very strange dream in high school. I was an apostle, one of those who had met Christ. And I was preaching the Gospel to sailors on a classic 19th century style wooden warship, like something out of a Hornblower novel. There were all these sailors sitting listening to me explain that it was all true, and I had met the guy, and wasn’t this great news. I was apparently impressive. I woke up understanding religion better than I ever had.

The only other notable dream I can remember was more recently and very depressing. Everyone was disgusted and angry with me, including close friends and immediate family. I was openly abused and reviled, and unfortunately it was all true. That one took a few weeks to shake.

Otherwise? I sleep, I wake up. I am not bothered by dreams for good or ill now. I snorkel in the Styx for 8 hours a night and wake up refreshed. Not such a bad deal, although I’d prefer hot ‘n’ steamy sex dreams or entertaining art slideshows if I could order from a menu.

Dream of the wrong D.

I think the last few have been coming directly from some peculiar research facility where they’re beaming Jungian imagery over the internet into my head.

In my dream I’m Apollo chasing Daphne, knowing that she wants nothing to do with me and that she’s going to turn into a damn plant, but this is my role so here I go. It’s all about which arrow hits you. I duck around bushes barely catching sight of her, and then suddenly I run into a clearing.

Only Daphne’s nowhere to be seen, not even as a laurel tree, and there’s some other woman there. Slightly too late I realize this is Diana, oh shit she doesn’t like it when guys show up and BOOM! She turns me into a deer.

A Far Side deer, at that. She wanders off and I sit frustrated on a stump.

Story of my fuckin’ life, man.

My Hitler

  1. My father once had a dream in which he was staying in a Swiss pension. There was a boarding house group from several countries, and as typical in these places meals were communal, all at one table. Shortly after his arrival he discovered that the elderly German gentleman with the mustache was, in fact, Adolf Hitler. Since dream logic was in effect, the problem was not how to kill Hitler, or call the police or the army, or even berate him for his crimes. The question was: how to address him at dinner?

    He couldn’t just be “Mr. Hitler”; the guy was a former head of state. “Herr F├╝hrer”, though, would imply approval of the Third Reich and his dictatorship, which can’t be done even at dinner. Finally he figured it out: “Herr Reichskanzler Hitler” [sp?]. Since that was his official elected office, it was the best choice for being introduced or asking the guy to pass the salt.

  2. I once saw a lecture by a psychologist whose field of expertise was the psychology of contagion. This was just a few years into the AIDS epidemic, so it was a topic of current interest. He pointed out that how people think and behave about infection and contagion is related to scientific knowledge, but separate and different. And way stupider. For example, physically handicapped people are treated the way we treat people with an infectious transmittable disease: stay away, don’t touch. The mentally handicapped, too. NIMBY arguments against group homes sometimes boil down to “I’m afraid to have this near me”, as though one could catch mental retardation or multiple sclerosis from the water supply or at the mall.

    The most fascinating part of the lecture was the discussion of the contagion of clothing. People were asked a series of questions about clothing that had been worn by others. No one wanted to wear clothing that an AIDS patient had worn, even if it had been thoroughly cleaned. Many people didn’t want to wear clothing that a handicapped person had worn. And finally, the contagion of evil enters the picture when we’re talking about clothing. If some beloved figure like Mother Theresa has worn a sweater, most people responded they’d love to wear it. However, if Adolf Hitler had worn the sweater, no one wanted to wear it. And if the sweater had been worn by Adolf Hitler and then by the Dalai Lama, they still wouldn’t wear it. Some kinds of contagion can’t be purified.

So anyway that’s how I learned that you can turn into Hitler if you sit on the wrong toilet seat, and that you don’t want to stay in a hotel with the guy.