Sunday, February 19, 2012

Spiral Notebook Sunday: Monday, December 4, 2000

"He's always loved dreams--his own, other people's. With respect to analysis, they're invaluable, like having a wiretap on someone's soul. Even the most cryptic yield to examination, and a mere fragment can get a session going."

~~Kathryn Harrison, Envy

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Monday, December 4, 2000

[The dream] began in the electronics department of a Kmart. I was flipping through CDs, not looking for anything in particular and this guy standing near me kept saying, "Shit, shit, oh shit." over and over again. I was about to tell him how inconsiderate he was being so I looked up from the CDs. The guy was wearing six or seven layers of dirty clothes--he even had several hats on his head and a rumpled sock hanging from his nose. Just as I opened my mouth, he said again, "Shit, oh shit." and then pulled a gun from the pocket of his outer-layer coat. He said, "Oh shit--this is a hold-up and I want all the money." So he waved the gun around and people screamed and scattered. The cashier handed him a drawer full of money and a stack of CDs and the guy ran off still waving the gun. After he'd gone, I left the store out a side door with a line of other customers...

When I arrived home, it was of course, not my actual real-life home--in fact, it is a picture perfect replica of my "dream house." Warm, tidy, tastefully decorated. And I wandered from room to room, feeling grateful that I had survived the hold-up and grateful, too, that this was my house.

There was a knock on the front door and...I opened the door to find six guys standing there in Spandex bodysuits, complete with full face masks--five of them were in metallic red and the sixth was in a metallic yellow suit. The five in red pushed through the door and went after five adults inside the house (these people weren't there before the knock and I could make out no faces...so while they were on "my side," I had no idea "who" they were and still don't for sure). They attacked with all sorts of pseudo-ninja moves and the people from my house were trying to fend them off.

I could hear things being broken, smashed throughout the house as the team of red Spandex guys spread out. I barely had time to register the damage they were probably doing before the sixth guy--the one in yellow--attacked me. I was trying to fend him off and grabbed the thing closest to me to use as a shield and weapon. It was a wicker hamper, which I used to block his punches and then I scooped him up with it. (Laws of physics are suspended in dreams--conveniently so.) I had managed to scoop him into the hamper, but it was clear he had no intention of staying in there. He kept popping up and I kept shoving him back down. I became more and more panicked until there was a running chant in my head, "Push him down, push him down--" I understood at the deepest level that my survival depended upon keeping this guy in the hamper...

The stress of it--I wasn't winning, was barely staying even, in fact--finally woke me up and I was staring at the ceiling, waiting for my heart rate to slow to somewhere near normal, and going over the elements of the dream in my head. Kind of a dream inventory--not so much to make sense of it as to remember it later.

So, I thought, "Okay, an army of guys in Spandex, a nice house, and I'm trying to save myself with a hamper..."

And it just went click in my head--or pop--or fizz--or something. The dream was about my "dirty laundry" keeping me from having the things I want. My "dirty laundry"--the mistakes of my past (both the ones I've made and the ones others made that affected and reflected upon me) are standing in the way of the future as I would like it to be.

The way I can save myself in the second half of the dream is by putting the guy in a hamper--the proper place for "dirty laundry." In the first half of the dream, the thief was dirty laundry incarnate and he stole money and material things and prevented me from buying something I wanted.

All of this came to me in a flash--but I have spent much of the time since trying to understand some of the other elements of the dream and, probably more importantly, trying to understand what emphasis I should place on the dream in my waking world.

First, the symbolism...The colors the Spandex men were dressed in--red and yellow--I think may refer to anger and fear. My anger bursts through the door and fans out at the other adults involved in my dirty laundry or, farther afield, elements of my own character (I can't think of five at the moment, but I know there are easily that many) that have contributed to my "dirty laundry." My fear attacks me directly and I am forced to battle it alone, all the while distracted by the damage my anger is doing to the rest of my house and the other people in it.

Which brings us to how much weight should be placed on the dream in my waking life section--I had a moment (okay, half a day) where I thought the dream might somehow be prophetic. It was a message from someone, somewhere that I would never overcome the past, that even when/if things appeared to be on-track, it would come back (IN SPANDEX) after me.

An alternative way of seeing the dream is that it was my subconscious sending out a newsflash--though why my subconscious would choose Spandex men as messengers, I am unsure. So either my subconscious thought is I can never overcome the past, etc or it's that the only way to overcome the past is to put away my dirty laundry and my fear. It's much more soothing to assume this dream is a bit of wisdom kicked out of the inner reaches of my brain than to assume that even my subconscious mind has given up hope.

23 comments:

  1. Wow. Maybe you should just uh, sleep on it? :)

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    1. That's a very wise suggestion. ;)

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  2. Dreams are just weird - I used to have a recurring dream as a child that a gorilla was chasing me up a telephone pole. Go figure.

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    1. My daughter once had a dream about a menacing TOUCAN of all things, which lived in the backyard of my sister's house. She's mock-terrified of toucans to this day. We saw a mini toucan (toucanette) unexpectedly (how else?) in a pet store a couple of months ago and she made quite a hilarious scene over it.

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  3. The funny thing to me, is that I came up with dirty laundry too. But I was thinking far more literally and was going to ask you if it was piling up in your house, causing you stress, weighing on your mind when you're out, and threatening to take over your house! Lol!

    - Maybe you just have to do laundry!

    (Re Spandex, I thought Power Rangers.)

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    1. That is so funny because I immediately thought of the Power Rangers too!

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    2. Literal dirty laundry is just as likely around here as figurative, believe me. And yeah, I remember thinking Power Rangers-esque at the time, too. I had three boys, after all. So perhaps it's not so surprising that they were wearing spandex, after all.

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  4. "In dreams the world keeps spinning 'round and 'round.

    And I can't get it out of my head,
    I can't get it out of my head." Jeff Lynde, ELO

    How many times do things go "click in my head-or pop-or fizz?." Dreams are the doodlings of the subconscious mind. If they produce some inkling as to what's going on, then it's all good. I just wish I could write that doggoned locker number down somewhere, so that I can end the recurring high school/hall-wandering, locker issues dream. After all, I graduated from high school in 1970.

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    1. Oh my gosh, my class schedule and map of the school must be in there! I keep trying to remember what class I have, at what time, on what day, what the assignments are, and where the heck the classroom is since I seem to keep missing it/them.

      (Actually, much to my interest and amusement my dreams "graduated" me to college a few years ago. Far fewer high school dreams, and it's about darned time! - Though I still find myself the oldest camper at summer camp sometimes.)

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    2. Oh, no, not the reoccurring high school dreams. Mine is that I find out I didn't really graduate! Does this invalidate my college degrees? I panic. Whew. Makes waking up a pleasure.
      But I admire Masked Mom's detailed recall of her dream. I think she did well figuring it out!

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    3. I am plagued by the high school dream thing, too. Having never gone to college, I haven't yet moved on, but I have had several dreams in which I am a 40-year-old trying to pass as a high school student because I forgot to get all the credits I needed to graduate in the first place.

      And, oh, the locker problem! It's maddening, simply maddening, standing there trying to read the numbers on the locker and knowing that even if I figure out the right locker, there's no way I'm going to know the combination.

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    4. I don't have the locker problem, but I have LOTS of trouble with other "number combo" type things. Elevators, phones.... don't get me started on those in dreams! I even tried to insert voice dial phones into my dreams to circumvent this!

      Re not having passed High School... I had those dreams for a while too, and I would get SO angry, upset and stressed by them. Nowadays, it seems I'm still there by choice. That I chose to keep going long after I had enough credits - years! I don't know WHY because I did not like High School, but I usually have the knowledge that I could leave if I wanted to, except that I've made the commitment to do that year, so I feel obligated. - The College dreams are better!

      Oh! Anyone finally get to class, then have no pen and paper for notes?

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  5. I'm amazed that you remember your dreams with such clarity, and then go on to analyze them. I remember most of mine, but have no clue what they mean.
    As with Noisy Quiet, I immediately pictured Power Rangers. And, if that dream were mine, it would mean I'm being overtaken by actual laundry.

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    1. It's a brain training thing, I think. I got fixated on the whole dream thing back in high school and started recording and dissecting the ones I could remember. I actually wrote something in my journal shortly after I wrote this one down that maybe the fact that I paid so much attention to the dreams was why my subconscious continued to "bless" me with such weirdness.

      And me, too, with Power Rangers and dirty laundry. ;)

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  6. For the spandex guys, I pictured the nihilists from The Big Lebowski.....and I kept thinking, "The dude abides." Not sure what that means!

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    1. It's a step up from Power Rangers, I suppose.

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  7. Dreams. Can be the weirdest scariest things. Not because of the dream itself, but because of that lingering feeling of "What does it mean?"

    In my book, any dream involving spandex..is a nightmare.

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    1. This one definitely felt like a nightmare, especially when I first woke up.

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  8. Spandex conjures up images of Richard Simmons, which-to me- is a terrible nightmare.

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    1. He is scary. Here's something in spandex that scares me more: http://www.rethinkip.com/images/Slim%20Goodbody.jpg

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  9. I love Richard Simmons.
    Anyway, I thought I commented on this yesterday but it might have been in a dream or sometime during the Eisenhower administration because my days have just been like that lately.
    I am so intrigued by this dream and could analyze the crap out of it for you.
    I really do love Richard Simmons. So not a nightmare.
    When you dream of a house it usually represents ye olde psyche, especially if it is a recurring house where strange things happen. Do you discover rooms that you didn't know were there?

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    1. Richard Simmons is, um, not the scariest thing I've ever seen in Spandex (that honor goes to Slim Goodbody from Captain Kangaroo, but I'm probably one of ten people on the planet that remember him). I would be thrilled to hear your thoughts on this particular dream. It was a long time ago, but it still makes me scratch my head a bit.

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    2. Slim Goodbody came to my school - Just as scary ;)

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