I’m in the Catholic elementary school in the northern Ontario town where I spent my childhood. I’m talking to a guy I grew up with. We’re interrupted when the actor, Song Kang Ho [Korean actor from films such as Memories of Murder, the Host, and Thirst], comes along decked out in Stalinist military dress and offers me some ice-cream from North Korea. I eat it and it’s delicious.
This is a dream I had recently. I call it Continuity Error.
I’m in my girlfriend’s office. She has shown me a picture of her real office, but this looks nothing like that. It’s lunch time. I’m told to wait at her desk until she comes back from the cafeteria.
When she returns from lunch she ignores me and sits together with the other women from her office and proceeds to eat ramen noodles with them. They are all dressed in the same fashion: 1950’s or early 60’s American collegiate style updated for modern times – single-colour, pleated skirts cut fairly high, knee-high leggings, tight sweaters, heels and thick hairbands. My girlfriend’s skirt is green.
I wander over to one of the computers they use for analyzing data on various materials they produce. As I sit some men from the office come over and start talking about the difference in colours between one sample and another, voicing their disapproval of the inferior one. After they leave, another man approaches. I can sense he wishes to speak to me, but he chooses not to. He has a kindly, round face, and inch-long black hair spiked forward at a 45° angle with the aid of gel. He is dressed impeccably in a purple, velvet, 3-piece suit complete with gold pocket watch and chain.
I decide to get some coffee from a vending machine out in the foyer…
And now I’m in a subway or train station. The walls are constructed from red brick. I’m still looking for coffee and I see some vending machines, but my concern has been diverted to something else. There’s something important I’m involved in, but I… ah, right…
I’m now in a forest and the member of an alliance which is about to cross paths with a group of enemies who were once our allies. We’re all dressed in ragged, black, military style clothing and carrying guns, and when we enter a clearing our enemies appear. Their appearance is the same as ours. There’s a sense of relief for some reason, but there’s no time for that…
Because it’s time to climb a giant wall, which crosses the entire landscape. The wall is perched atop a ridge that splits a vast valley of grassland. When I reach the top I am in a world like that which one would find in a Warcraft game. Looking down, I can see, massed on the other side of the wall, an ocean like horde of dark soldiers and beasts. I look to my left and there stands one of our great captains, looking resplendent in shivering blue armor. To my right is another of our great leaders, he in magnificent dark-orange plate.
The three of us know that the battle will be lost, but we decide to launch an attack instead of preparing defenses, in the hopes that as we fight, the wall will hold long enough for those inhabiting the lands behind us to flee.
The battle begins. It is my task to circle behind the horde with my knights and attack from the rear. We do so, and for a while I am successfully hacking and slashing my way through the rearguard of the enemy. But, as we knew them to be, our efforts were not enough.
Later, I find myself among a group of survivors pouring over maps, trying to figure out where we might find safe haven. We decide to take a long forgotten road south to the sea and then cross by sail to the Southlands. As the dream ends, we linger, looking at a map, knowing with anger, regret and sadness that the beautiful lands behind us, our homes, will soon be overrun by the barbarous horde.
This is a dream I had. No embellishments; written just as I remember it. I call this dream Madman.
I’m in the library — the only library — in the small town where I grew up. The library smells like all libraries do: comfortably musty. The library has two floors, the second of which is a sort of loft which runs around the perimeter of the library. There is a single staircase planted in the middle of the first floor, which runs up to the loft. The stairs and all the trimmings in the library are made from some kind of varnished hardwood, which has the colour of those cube-shaped, individually-wrapped-in-clear-plastic, soft caramels.
I don’t know what I’m doing in the library, but I’m scared; terrified. Then I see him. His clothing is murky, the colour of sludge. He’s wearing a mask. It’s white and has plain features. I don’t get a good look at it, because suddenly I’m running. I’m sprinting up the staircase. I can feel him right behind me.
The library morphs. It has now been redesigned by M.C. Escher: all caramel staircases and no gravity. I keep running, sometimes evading my pursuer, but never losing him. I try hiding under a staircase and I try jumping from staircase to staircase. I can feel the butterflies in my stomach as I jump from one height to another. At some point during this chase the dream becomes lucid, and I’m thinking,
“Wow, this is scary, but exciting.”
I wonder should I stop the dream now, as I’m sure it will end in my death, but no, I decide to let it go on, so that I can see what happens next.
Another morph. The stairs of Escher’s library have become the stairs of my childhood home. I’m running downstairs from the second floor, my feet slapping the hardwood furiously. As I reach the first floor hallway and turn towards the kitchen I hear him come down hard off the last stairs. He’s so close. I run over the red and white linoleum tiles into the kitchen. I make the U-turn around the refrigerator nook and head for the back porch. I jump the 4 steps down into the porch and,
“Shit, he got me.”
I’m not scared anymore. My lucid mind has taken over. Now, I’m just curious to see how far I can take this dream. The Madman turns me around and he pulls out a knife. The knife is headed for my stomach.
“Alright, that’s enough.”
I wake up, and wonder what it would feel like to be stabbed.