dreams... aka... the worst things ever

OK, so I just found out tonight is not Monday. So, apologies (not really, though) for being a day late. Fuckin holidays throwing me off. I spent all of what I now know was Monday being hungover and watching baseball. It was as good a way to waste a day as I can think of, so…

But the thing I alluded to last week, only to never finish my thought, was how fucked up dreams can be. Until a few years ago, I didn’t know how fucked up mine were. I thought mine were the same as everyone else’s. Why would anyone assume their thoughts and dreams are strange compared to those around them? It’s not like guys typically talk about dreams that aren’t related to sex. But guys are mostly idiots, so…

To give you a quick backstory, I’ve been a huge fan of the movie “Inception” since the day it came out. First, Leo. Yep, anything Leo is my jam. “The Beach,” anyone? But second was the mainstream notion that dreams within dreams are a thing. I’d never seen or heard of other people experiencing this. Obviously, it was a story plot point to help create a crazy world but I never heard anyone else discuss dreams within dreams before. I remember bringing it up once to a friend when I was younger and he said he maybe had one like that but that I was probably fucked up for dreaming like that. The parts of “Inception” that particularly struck me were that the dreams played off each other (meaning something affecting one dream could affect another) and that death was the jump from one level to another. “Inception” made me feel more normal, if only a bit, and I loved it for that. I’ve been afraid of total darkness since I was twelve due to the inability to distinguish dreams from reality. You might see why below. Dreams are inherently evil to begin with but living in them for longer than necessary is torture. Read on…

But, the main part of the backstory is that I’ve been experiencing this for as long as I can remember. My earliest dream memories are of dreams I still have today. I’ve been having some of these dreams, on and off, for almost twenty years. And the hard part is they never get easier. They never get less fucked up. They never fuck with me less than they did when I was just a boy. I hope that by writing this out, maybe some of you will feel less alone and less weird and less fucked up about the dreams you have. It’s all I ever wanted from music and hopefully this blog can help as well. It can’t help you at 3am when this shit is kicking off full steam, but when it becomes too much and you can’t bear to fall back sleep and you are watching “Rick and Morty” reruns to pass the night away, hopefully you’ll feel less alone.

So, to give you an idea of what I’m talking about after all that gibberish, here you go. Here’s a dream I’ve been having since I was like ten years old and here’s how I experience that dream throughout the night.

Let’s say I go to bed at 1:30am, a pretty common bedtime for me. I’ll play on my phone for twenty minutes, catching up on the days news, then put my phone down and fall asleep. The next thing I know, I’m staring at a building that’s been hit by what appears to be an earthquake. I’m in the lobby, looking towards a stairwell. There is rubble all around me. The ground is still shaking. I can hear pipes exploding off in the distance and I can feel the heat of nearby fires. I hear the screams of people trapped in the building. I’m not sure who, but the (nondescript and non-specific) girl that I love is trapped somewhere in the building. I hear her voice off in the distance. I run up the stairs and towards the sound of her voice. I can hear the people around me screaming for help but I’m determined to save “her” before anyone else. BUT, if I beeline straight for her, I will die. A beam will collapse and fall on my head or a pipe will explode injuring me or the floor will give out and I’ll plummet to my death or a fire will engulf me and I’ll burn to death. I MUST save as many people as I can before I get to “her.” So, I grab a couple people on the first floor and walk them out of the building. I head back in and go straight to the second floor. I find a family there and persuade them to follow me out. We make it out just before their apartment collapses and is engulfed in the flames. I move towards the third floor, where I think my love might be but there’s too much fire. I try to soldier through but am slowly, and painfully, burned to death. I feel the heat. I feel my flesh give up and turn black. It is slow. It is painful. I can’t wait for death but it comes at its own pace. Finally, I pass out from the pain and exhaustion. Only to find myself… Back in the lobby. Take two.

I race up to the third floor to save “her” first. The stairwell collapses on me and I’m granted a quick death. After which I find myself… Back in the lobby.

OK, so rushing to save her won’t work but what is the best way to save all these people? I try starting on the third floor but not with “her.” I usher an injured woman and her husband down to safety. I then make my way back to the second floor and… BAM… a beam falls and knocks me out. I awake paralyzed and slowly burning to death. I can do nothing but inhale the smoke and pray for death but the fire isn’t quite upon me yet. I watch a family (mother, father, son and daughter) struggle to evacuate and eventually give in to fear and death. I wish that I could die so I could wake up. Finally, I drift off to death and… I’m back in the fucking lobby.

Let’s start with the second floor this time. The family makes it out safely. I get the “easy ones” on the first floor out with no problem. Now, it’s time for the third floor. The injured woman and her husband are there, cowering as the building is collapsing all around them. I lead them to safety outside the building. As I race back up to the third floor for “her,” I am struck by a piece of exploding pipe and some ceiling tiles. The stairs underneath me start to give way due to the extensive fire damage and suddenly I’m falling. I break both legs, likely some ribs and probably my hip and lay there bleeding. The fire and smoke is closing in all around me. Finally, I pass out from inhalation and die slowly. It’s almost a relief. BUT… I’m back in the fucking lobby again…

This time I race to the third floor. Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and let it fall upon my head. I’m done with this shit. I want out of this dream. The fire drops the exposed 12”x12” wooden beams and I wait for it to crush my skull, twenty or so feet below. It obliges and I will myself out of the dream loop.

I awake in my room, in my bed. My cat is asleep against my leg and there is no light coming in through the window. I shake myself awake so I don’t fall back into the dream. I reach for my phone and check the time. It is… 6am. Wait, that doesn’t make sense. At 6am, the sun should be peeking it’s head through the shades but it’s pitch black outside and in the room. I get up to go piss. I pee and start to head back to bed. Suddenly, I realize this isn’t right. Something is wrong. I check my phone again and it’s 2:10am… I’m not actually awake at all. I’m immediately back in the fucking lobby. I’m still in the dream…

And this can go on all night. I know they say dreams only take seconds but I’ve often fell asleep, fell into a dream cycle and woke up (for real) the next morning. The weirdest thing about these dreams is their video game like quality. I never forget what happened in the previous take. I just die and start again. So I can use the knowledge and strategies I tried to further my gains. Each attempt gets farther and farther or saves more and more people. It’s weird that I’m aware of each failed attempt. It’s also terrible. Some nights I can’t fight and I try to give up and die. I opt for quicker, more painless deaths since my “normal deaths” are so fucked up. But these quick deaths rarely do anything other than restart the dream. And since half the dreams are of me running from people who are trying to slaughter me in horrendous ways, that’s not always a good thing. Sometimes the best thing you can do is prolong each dream/death as long as possible so you don’t feel as much pain. I often wake up with sore muscles (and once a broken foot, still don’t know how) from these type of dreams.

Luckily, I don’t have them every night. Sometimes I even have “normal” dreams. But more often than not, this is where my brains goes while I sleep. I try a lot of nights to drink until I won’t dream, aka until I pass out, to avoid a possible all night torture session.

Look, I could go on all night about this (and it would keep me from having to possibly face it tonight) but I’ll end it here. If you have dreams similar to this or similar in theme, either comment or CONTACT ME and I’ll be your soundboard or confidant (Golden Girls style) as I know what you’re going through.

Well, “Rick and Morty” is calling me, so I will bid you a fond adieu.

(dictated but not read)