So I had a dream the other night—my hands were splitting open and cake was coming out of them. Yellow cake, as a matter of fact, and I don’t mean that it was uranium yellow cake and I was turning into a really cool super hero with the mutant ability to melt brains, but actual yellow cake.
Out of my hands. I don’t think there was frosting, unfortunately.
Obviously, this is the first thing that went through my mind. Followed by the affirmation that I do, indeed, dream in color.
But I’ve known for years that I dream in color—I always remember one dream that I had when I was a teenager. I was sitting on a porch with my family and a bunch of other people, and all of a sudden, these bright purple and red balls starting falling from the sky, and as they hit someone, the person would disintegrate. I turned and started to run when a ball landed on on my left wrist, and I felt a tingling sensation spread out from it as everything started to get fuzzy. I even recall that as it was all happening, I started thinking, “Wow, I’m dying—I wonder what’s going to happen next.”
As it turns out what happened next is that I woke up … to find my left wrist was wedged between my knees and had “fallen asleep,” which explains the tingling. Fun, right?
But yeah, my dreams have always been a little off, although maybe not much more than anyone else’s, I guess. I also tend to have a lot of nightmares where I wake up screaming (and scaring the crap out of my wife) … but we’ll save that for another post, I think. Or not.
Anyway, I don’t know if I’m lucky or not that I tend to remember the majority of my dreams … I can think of a few that I’d rather forget, especially those involving the deaths of family members. Recently, I had an exceptionally vivid dream that my sister the whore had died, and it was so freakishly real that when I got out of bed in the morning, I texted her … you know, to just make sure she was okay. I didn’t hear from her for a few hours, so I texted my other sister (because I’m paranoid like that), who finally was able to make contact, and I finally heard from the whore after freaking out for about 12 hours or so. Whore.
I guess I have a tough time because more than a few times, my dreams have been on the prescient side. I’m not saying I’m psychic or anything; more like my brain never really stops working and when I’m unconscious and it’s not occupied with the immediate tasks of being awake and running my life, it’s able to do some sort of comatose logic puzzles and arrive at interesting—and often—accurate conclusions before I’ve even thought of them consciously.
I remember one dream when I was like 13—my mother had lost an earring, and she gave me the other one and asked me to “dream” about where the lost one might be. I thought she was crazy, but that night I dreamed that it had fallen off the back of her dresser and was underneath it in the blue pile carpet. When I woke up, I checked but didn’t see it; my mother said after I told her she went and checked—and found it.
Again, it wasn’t really anything in the Nostradamus neighborhood—looking under the dresser seems like it should’ve been her first guess—but it was still odd to be right like that.
Of course, I’ve had plenty of dreams where I was absolutely wrong. For years, I dreamed I was going to have a daughter—
As I was writing this, I pulled out an old “dream” notebook that I kept in 1993 (back before I was married). Here’s one entry, verbatim: “A dream projection—three kids! First, a daughter, eventually a tall girl with long, straight brown hair. A round face, small brown eyes, light skin. Then two sons, one with very short brown hair, the other definitely a boy, but looks unclear.”
Well, as Meatloaf says, “Two out of three ain’t bad.”
I’ve been flipping through that notebook, where I was writing down lots of dreams, which had everything from aliens and President Clinton to riding inside of a blue whale and scoring the winning goal for the New York Rangers (I can’t even skate!). Lots of odd stuff, although what’s even odder is how little I’ve dreamed about sex. I mean, considering the unbridled freedom that is my subconscious, you’d think I’d have a few Salma Hayek-fueled ramblings from time to time—maybe even the occasional Debbie Gibson “Only In My Dreams” fantasy—but really, if I’ve had more than 50 sex dreams in my entire life, I’d be shocked. And absolutely none that I could ever recall involving celebrities. Weird.
Okay, for brain bleach, here are two dreams from my notebook that I had somewhat close together involving my two grandfathers, who died less than two years apart. Both dreams are from after they died.
Dream One, about my mother’s father “Clem.”
I am on 62nd Street in Brooklyn, being taunted by a gang of thugs. I climb the steps of the [family] home when the front door opens. Out steps Clem, in a Superman outfit, to scare off the thugs.
We go back into the house, upstairs, to discuss religion. “You can’t be an angel,” I tell him. “I don’t believe in God.”
He smiles—”I can’t say that I agree with you.”
My sister and grandmother are there in the kitchen with us, but only I can see him, and continue to talk to him. I know they can’t see him, but I can, clearly, and try to make him visible.
They can feel him, and he starts to fade from the chair that he’s sitting in. I tell him I love him as I wake up in tears.
Dream Two, about my father’s father “Johnny Boy.”
I’m standing next to a fountain, talking to someone, when I feel a tap on my shoulder—it’s him. I tell the person I’m with that I have to talk to him (because I know, even in the dream, that this is my chance to say goodbye to him).
He doesn’t say a word to me—like when he had on the oxygen mask, post-stroke—but he doesn’t have to. He’s wearing his yellow sweater and light brown pants, just like in the picture in Grandma’s collage.
He gives me a nod—”Yeah, all right, Raymond”—and then a hug. I tell him that I love him and wish him luck. He turns to go as I wake up.
As for tonight’s dream—I hope instead of yellow cake, they involve chocolate pudding …