Dream Journal

Return to School/Work: Naardviot or Naardveet

A multi-stage heist to steal a baby (or wealth) in broad daylight. It repeats, the same beats with variations of setting, dozens of times. A grouchy burly male criminal, a heavy cart going off the side of the road, and opportunistic me. A sci-fi Star-Wars-like fleet of floating swarming police assault craft, of AT-AT like bubbles, zooms away from a post nearby foiling bystanders hopes of intervention.

The last repetition, we’re stealing the baby/treasure out of the mother’s body. A gesture made fingering to an unexpected hole in the mom. A blank beat, an empty space, the pattern finally breaks and our criminal gang is dismembered and transmogrified. I see my dream character as the female protagonist of Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, just her doll-like torso and head, floating down into a watery abyss trailing tendrils of blood as she rapidly exsanguinates. The question sits there at the end of the dream: what was different this time, what went wrong?

My first day returning to work as a delivery driver after a long break. I feel different, pulling up and parking my motorcycle near the assemblage of other vehicles. I carry a folded-in cardboard box under my arm, two of my smallest pet rats inside. I naively try placing a delivery bag in there too, and hastily pull it out when the ratties predictably find it (but before anyone notices).

It’s my first day back at school, too. I’m in a classroom where the teacher is demonstrating how to hang string lights above a blackboard, but giving wrong information. I smoothly take over and show how to correct braid them so the strands stay together. She admonishes me by asking “something-something to not” and I wittily joke as if she said “to knot”, still trying to act as though I’m not overriding her. She pivots to teaching a lesson of describing me by an insulting term, akin to”North Idiot”, or Naardviot. I’m pretty sure she actually meant Naardveet, though by now I can’t say anything without her authority feeling threatened.

A girl I don’t know is sitting on a locker room bench talking to herself in Korean in a semi-crazed tone. But I can understand her, and see the danger for her, so sit nearby and begin talking too. I begin improvising as if we’re having a normal conversation, miming eye movements as well.

Still sitting nearby, I change from my 2nd school period outfit into that for 3rd period, without taking off my pants. When I see the pants I believed were white on me, they have huge overlapping layers of colorful stains on them. I don’t have enough time to change again and I have to make a compromise one way or the other.

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