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Dream Journal

Old Man Spills My Plants

An old man has been taking care of my plants while I’ve been on a journey abroad. He’s a Swiss scientist, and perhaps also my friend Autumn’s dad. When I come to retrieve my plants, he releases a linchpin connecting the corner of an L-shaped wall which was constructed to hold them. They spill out across the ground, destroying several that are fruiting and could’ve been food. I want to be angry, to complain, asking why he did such a thing, but he took care of my plants the whole time I was gone — only to do this. I’m flabbergasted and I reason it would be too embarrassing in front of my friends to get mad, and still probably not get a decent answer.

As I leave I pass my Aunt Carol, who I see is the only one awake on the second floor of a roofless house. “Tell my story…”, I jokingly implore. But I have to repeat it and get up close to the house because I insist on saying it in a funny voice. Also, perhaps for nostalgia toward some of the peppers I lost when they spilled on the ground, “remember to pepper your food…”

“Journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” — I manage to remember to say this, just as I step out of bed for what I know will be a long day.

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Dream Journal

A Bit of Gold, But No Wealth

Tiny chunks of gold that I’ve kept since a robbery I performed at my workspace a long time ago. I have to deposit it in the bank little by little so as to to avoid suspicion — or giving away enough to be detected. Which basically means I’m only maintaining my current financial level, and will never be able to live as “wealthy” despite possessing this glittering material wealth.

From the top of a bunk bed, I reach down to the floor to release my pet rat Tipple (short for Tipperarius, a combo of Ozma Tippetarius and Country Tipperary). As a joke, I move a carved rectangular sign that reads says “International Border” adjacent to the door of the next room.

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Dream Journal

Underbed Time Travel Shoes

“Darkside”, a chunky playful goth girl with a repeated color theme of black and red. Posing for a very cool elaborate portrait above a planet, red stars in the background of space.


Shoes are lined up underneath the far edge of a bed in a specially-rented hotel room. The room is open on two sides (perhaps glass walls) overlooking a gorge. The shoes each represent a different person’s important incident in the past, an accident, a drive-by, a threesome, an adoption. Having just discovered them incidentally I’m surprised when my work partner tells me they’re what we came for: they can be used to time travel. Each pair can flip into a specific instance of the far future.


I’m a detective in a long, darkened townhouse belonging to a married Armenian couple named Kevita ( kev-it-uh) & Kevita. Next door, they also run a shop that sells the drink, Kevita. We’re searching the home as part of their arrest, though I don’t consider them criminals and I’m not particularly concerned.

My partner passes through the space between a bed and a wall no problem. But I instinctively feel its too narrow. Crawling underneath the bed I follow a cord, where I notice it glows. Sure enough it leads to something dangerous though I don’t remember anything of its nature.

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Dream Journal

Kiss from a Girl who Found Me

An auto updating input window surrounded by a circle overlays the dream. Soon, if gets updated with info from Madeline Mladich.

I’m lying on the top back bunk of a row of communal bunks one day, reading Wikipedia while everyone else is out. A bald heavyset dude peeks in randomly, making an expression like like I might be in what he feels is an incorrect bunk. So I move down to the lone single level bed, then after he leaves, into a lower bunk next to it where I’m unlikely to be noticed. That’s where a girl finds me… a girl that seems to have specifically sought me out.

After a brief but very good conversation (where I somehow feel compelled to convey the importance of my contributions during the night, when I usually choose to work) she leans over the bed and gives me an absolutely glorious kiss. Our time available together, I realize, is far too short, and I get the idea to have her write down her info. The input window hovering over the dream updates — I feel like our relationship is solidified, saved in the computer memory sense. Madeline Mladich.

I show her some of my work, zooming around a simplified model of the city (still quite complex), overlaid onto the city itself. We’ve recently expanded, and I’m aesthetically placing more structures in the center of map, choosing as much as possible to stay away from downtown and the older well-established parts of the model.

Later on I’m walking up and down the narrow communal hall, knocking on white-painted doors looking for anyone who knows what the pink glitter paint I keep seeing on the doors means.


I’m in a part of the Ukraine. I explore a probably abandoned white building glinting in the weak spring sun. All the walls and ceilings are glass window-frames, like a greenhouse, but I get the impression this was light manufacturing of some kind. There’s a hobo-like character on roof helping me, and he spots a terminator robot outside for me to avoid. I can see it’s dark outline and the bright red blotch of it’s eye.

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Dream Journal

Medieval Nemeses & Nana’s Bedroom

An elevator to your underground secret base. Biological material grows through cracks into the inside, like the fungal contamination of the City of Ambergris (from Jeff Vandermeer stories). I realize that every time you complete the most recent mission, a  new monstrous baby extrudes from the ceiling.


Two small medieval-age kingdoms sit along the bank of what looks like a wide moat. They’re always in conflict, yet always in balance, each making up what the other lacks. If one of these nemeses should ever fall, a new nemesis twin takes its place. The society is stable and thus doesn’t change or advance.


A full-size pink latex mat is under my nana’s bed in our childhood home. I’m able to finally squeeze under the bed to try to get it out. My brother Patrick is there, and I’m trying to convince him to help me, and there’s something to do with him being gay — trans, actually, but it’s unclear.

In Nana’s sitting room, next door, I break up with an ex of mine — yet again. This time it’s easier as I’m part of an intelligence service. They take care of all her follow-up issues after I’ve told her we’re breaking up. I note how much easier this is with the help of an authority.

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Dream Journal

Brachiosaur Pal and Palace

A girl and her Brachiosaur friend explore a rough, wild beach together (reminiscent of Tuba and Hazel from Infinity Train.) She climbs down a steep, near-vertical sand wall. When he tries to follow, the wall collapses with a grainy crush, followed by child-like laughter.


In line waiting for the elevator in a big palace of entertainment, somewhere you might find in Reno, Nevada. At the top of its tower, I get the chance to sleep in a Brachiosaur skull. But when I’m in the hallway outside, on my way to the lone bed, I look out the window and realize it’s probably far too large to be a real skull — or am I small?

Waiting in line again, standing ankle-deep in tiny candy, like Nerds or Indian candied fennel seeds (mukhwas). Towards the end of the line, some bigger candy has seeped under the wall and into the walking path. The rules say we can take any of the smaller candy for free, but I sneak a few larger lozenge-shaped nuggets in my bag before the door checker of the room we’ve been waiting in line for.

I’m told to draw a ticket, which is a chance to win a prize. In the basket on the desk, I clearly glimpse a gold-rimmed one in the shuffle. Skeptical that it could be this easy, I reach in and grab it, to which the staff feign delight. I’m a little put off, to be honest, and the prize isn’t actually something I want. Now I’m quite happy I stole the bigger candies.

My wife uses my prize to take a free ride on one of the uncommon amusements, a motion-simulator mini-plane set in window frame in a wall that plays a black-and-white video game. I realize watching her play that this whole place is World War 2 themed, which I’d oddly missed until just now.

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Dream Journal

Stranded, but with Friends, but without Sleep

While traveling between San Diego and San Francisco, I get stuck outside when service stops, at a warmly-lit pub, somewhere near a dark ocean. I have to figure out a second-fastest way to get back; it seems to be air travel. Unfortunately the airline books me with a 5-day stopover (!). I end up staying with my college girlfriend Jenna, and spend my time doing things like organizing colored markers in a cabinet.

I ask her about what it is she sleeps in, trying to get a read on whether it’s a good idea for me to sleep naked as usual. At some point (which I don’t notice until after waking), Jenna becomes my friend Mickey.

I stay with Mickey at a university. It’s getting on midnight and I want to sleep, but his bed is configured to be the size of a couch (this is similar to an actual story I just re-told yesterday). I navigate my way through stacks of books in this long hall full of students — surrounded by a focused studying energy only found in the early month of September in a school year — to an open triangular little storage room with a mirror screwed on the wall and the final 3/4 of a box spring, which will finally allow me to sleep on a full bed.

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Dream Journal

Bookended Startling Rat Dreams

As I lay on the living room couch, I hear an odd rat-like noise from our back room — but not identifiable as one of our pets. I’m a bit playful when I go to investigate but creeped out by a bunch of our pillows that’ve been slashed almost in half. In an instant I realize no rat or other pet could’ve done this, and a malicious someone in likely still in the house.

I bolt awake, heart pounding, from sleep on the couch… remembering that I couldn’t fall asleep there; I had to give one of our rattie boys his medication.


I’ve been tricked into “checking out” some sort of vacation retreat with a very culty vibe. I try to leave but quickly find myself mobbed by a crush of people who aren’t allowing me to go. I think one even delivers the “it’s for my own good” line; bone-chilling in these circumstances. One bespectacled man grabs my keys and puts them in his pocket. Struggling against the huddle of bodies I manage to retrieve the keys — though I’m almost alarmed they let me have them back. They’re reluctant to do anything resembling an unambiguous assault. I escape climbing through a bathroom window when I think no one’s watching, though at this point… I wonder if they are.


I’m assigned a new group at Burning Man while it’s halfway through (not much like Burning Man — more like a week-long summer camp in an elaborate multi-story wooden atrium). I’m paired with three affable Asian kids younger than me. We’re moved to a different bunk room (a frequent occurrence) and shortly afterwards my first group, of which I’m still kind of a part, gets assigned a room that’s closer. I sleep there as it’s a bit easier, especially moving all my stuff, but I feel disappointed and conflicted for abandoning my cool new friends.


While lying asleep in bed, I hear one of our pet rats crawl up onto my wife’s side. It makes its way across our pillows, feeling oddly familiar. It crawls under the blankets right in front of me and I peek one eye open. It’s a grey rat, but we haven’t had any grey rats since… I bolt awake, realizing that one of our babies that went missing two months ago, Silveroo, has returned.

But he’s not there. There’s no rat at all. I was, for the second time in a night, having dreams of rats, set in the very place I was actually sleeping.

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Dream Journal

The Boss, The Barbarian, The Beast

Sharing a bed with a female boss, and a kid who joins us. It’s quality snuggle time but I have to be a good sport on account there’s an orange-lighted lamp behind us, one I just barely can’t reach while we’re ensconced together.

Female boss and I leave the relative comfort of this bedroom, a place which has the sensation of a single-room ground floor unit of a multi-story underground parking garage. The neighborhood is the dusty, sunny, oldest part of my hometown (although I don’t think of it as Cathedral City at any point, the architecture and streets are no other). We’re leading a class single-file while we roam the near-empty streets, searching for even one business compatible with ours. Finally, in a wider old-west-ish double collonnaded warehouse area, I suggest that the business there — in publishing — is close enough to journalism that it’s worth pursuing.

Unfortunately there’s a brutish barbarian who guards nearby; he manages to kill all of us before we even realize what’s going on. We’re left — not quite dead, but as good as dead — to perish slowly in the sun strung up on a tall post, like a ship’s crow’s nest. But there’s a saving grace — we’ve got a Brock Samson bodyguard just for such an occasion. He hides under a bridge until the hulking brute passes overhead, stabbing his machete through chipped slats and impaling the aggressor in brutal revenge. We’re taken down from our gallows and recover with no ill effects.

Going a little further in the small near-deserted town, there is a wide shallow lake to the right (something like I’ve seen before in dreams, a wistful view with balconies worthy for gazing in reflection) and to the left, what looks like what could be an ornate orthodox church. I’m pleased to go and explore, knowing I’m versed in how to behave in almost any religious building. Turns out it’s a Hindu shrine to Ganesh, one with specific obeisances to enter. My dad advances too quickly through the entryway crowded with votives. I watch him try to balance on two upturned djembe drums, not quite successfully.

Inside the building, I chat with a few close friends as we sit on barstools. Idly we gaze toward the adjacent wall, the only light in the room, adorned with a massive floor-to-ceiling aquarium — and at least one monstrous inhabitant. It looks like a swimming centipede, maybe a polychaete worm, as if from the Ordovician era. My sibling Patrick seems quite concerned — it’s large, aggressive, and very near. Yet I know something about the tank, reassuring him “that glass may look only 10, perhaps 12 inches thick, but it’s not. That’s what we may I’m call ‘arcane glass’, and for that thing it’s actual measure is [literally] infinity inches.” I’m quite serious with this assessment. As if to punctuate my point, the thing winds up to the glass again, bigger, meaner, with a frightening face, and hits it full speed — which makes a satisfyingly tiny donk sound.

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Dream Journal

Hidden Doors, Wet Sansa

In a complex, a restaurant portion thereof, with all sorts of hidden doors. I can’t see them as I haven’t been initiated and attained a certain level, but I can tell from others facial expressions they can. There are multiple Sansa Starks, one of which joins me on a bed that has a slow water drip on it.

Side note, mostly unrelated: the squirrel is my favorite character in Lord of the Rings.