Dream Journal

Dreamt above the Casitas Express, Los Barilles, BCS

Outside on a scaffold of our property i release a stray (non-pet) rat into our neighbor’s treehouse platform. It’s a caring gesture, but I don’t know if the neighbors would think so — it’s so high up I don’t they’d see. I realize that I had one of our younger pet rats on my shoulder (Jumby or maybe Fergus) and he must’ve leapt off somewhere along the way. I have to trespass onto the tall redwood treehouse platforms and jump down. I have to trace my steps back through a complicated series of cuboid spaces. This is a bit of a hackers domain: abandoned for it’s original industrial purpose then accessed and gradually claimed by a community of unaffiliated fringedwellers. I establish that little Jumby must’ve jumped off somewhere inside the safe zone of a complex of shipping containers; I don’t have to fear he is lost or in any real danger.

In front, ambling out on the sidewalk, I spot my homeslice friends Lauren and Mickey about to surprise me on my return trip from Australia. I approach from behind them (which unintentionally seems to interrupt their plans) and show them a few spots nearby that I now know. One place is off the street is a courtyard with a big tree. It’s much like the large unusual fig at Santa Rita Hot springs which I visited yesterday, but also like a picture I have of Lauren looking into a small green alley in San Francisco (from her 21st birthday trip, when I first arrived).

Riding a favorite bicycle in urban back alleys, somewhat Melbourne-ian. Magical tools are carried in the panniers but I don’t need to use them. My wife turns into a possum-rat and hides in a few of the lively clubs in this part of town. The vibe is an unlikely combination of Australia, Europe, New York, and cities in Baja Sur, Mexico. I locate my wife in a trendy wood-paneled place that could be a country whiskey bar. She has cartoonified herself flat inside a book, her back backed up to the spine.

By chance I run into my friend Dara, who’s very happy to see me. She’s completely dolled up in colorful goth makeup (looks a little more girlish than usual, not quite the Dara I know) and an all-black Victorian / Gothic Lolita outfit. She asks about my travels; I mention that no one asked about it when I posted about going to South America — it’s been long enough that I can’t remember if I really went, out if it was some prank that didn’t work out. In the course of talking we discover the country of the Bahamas is a place she, my wife, and I all have a connection to (partially true IRL). We express an enthusiasm for maybe one day visiting together.

I’m introduced to a nervous single woman who lives at a monument usually guarded by fog, in the center of a roundabout near a scenic vista. I happen to previously have found it myself, not knowing it was hidden on purpose. She has recently had a fence put up, as the fog patterns have changed. She reminds me of many people I might typically know through Facebook. My impression is she mainly just works on the monument while she lives there as an artist residency, and only socializes online.

I’m passing through a ritzy suburb (possibly military officers) when I chance upon a home I visited long ago. It’s an idiosyncratic burrow home dug into the desert sand, partially open, by an artist who made it for himself as an experiment in minimal living space. My Uncle John toured it as a possible place to live and I got to tag along, years back when I was probably a kid. (This seems like a real event as far as I thought in the dream.) I get invited in by the current owners and I point out the things I notice changed. It’s an astonishing use of space for somewhere that should only be enough room for 3-4 next to each other, especially the clever kitchen. The earthen dwelling seems to expand the longer I’m inside — I comment asking about this to the retired woman who lives there. But I think she starts hitting on me, which presents it’s own problems. I have to politely let her down once I notice her eyes, which have been rendered in low-poly texture like on a PlayStation One. I remember the name of this dusty house, or perhaps the (real) community it was built in: Kayenta.

Dream Journal

Lauren Buys SF Real Estate

I help my hometown friend Lauren buy a building in San Francisco’s Tenderloin. It’s an old six-floor walk-up building housing older Burners, with a soon painted-over mural in the backyard called “Burning Times”: a fire symbol and a series of clocks. I’m glad to have Lauren in San Francisco, and I hope to maybe one day live cheaply in this big building with her, but I’m not sure she understands how precious and sought-after a place like it is. I peek into her first floor room there’s barely anything in there except vintage curtains and sex toys on the bed.

Our class is learning from a science teacher (in the vein of Mr. Suggett or Mr. Lonborg) when class is interrupted by a long phone call about Nick Howell’s mom getting arrested in Connecticut. Nick Howell was a real kid I knew in middle school. The teacher gives a long compassionate speech afterwards, going into the merits of whether or not we should share these things. I find it hard to follow along, despite him being my favorite teacher.

Dream Journal

Four Dreams Recalling Youth (and one Premonition)

Walking with Lauren through the streets of Cathedral City. I watch traffic pass by and have that strange familiar feeling of “this is really happening” even though it’s not as profound as it used to be. I watch a man riding in the back of a pickup truck stop and slide out. He gives me a ride, but Lauren is nowhere to be found. He drives past the intersection where I am going, the office of housing. He’s driving offroad in the desert.

A game of basketball played between two teams of school age kids. The ball comes to me, and I’m within range to take a shot. Two other of my teammates have already tried and failed, and I know I will try and fail also.

Housesitting for my dad, I’m in my parents bedroom in Cathedral City. But my mom has already passed away. My dad keeps a slideshow of her going from the funeral on a very small old fuzzy TV screen. The bathroom feels empty with its two sinks.

Flop walks up next to me and I noticed that his hair has started to fall out… that his skin underneath is black and wrinkly. I’m forced to admit that he must be sick, possibly cancer, and I need to take him to the vet.


to Lauren, Homepie Cohabitation Thoughts

Hey there,

Writing earlier today, I was thinking about writing you again. See, when I first heard about the possibility (and I realize it is still a *possibility* only) of three of the four members living together, I thought “cool! they’re gonna have so much fun!” And then my rational brain kicked in, and I decided to write this email. So there’s your topic sentence, I guess. 

I really think it will be totally awesome. I do, cause I know. But I also just went through the whole process of getting a damned place a nigh on two months ago. What I’ll say is that it required more teamwork, coordination, and time-investment than raising a child for that month. That’s this city, partly. Advice I would give is to divide the labor—take many many pictures and then show them to roommates later. Speaking of them, make sure you know what the hell you want, and what you’re willing to settle for. After awhile, we learned to just try and apply for every place we saw. If you can make a contact sheet with all your info on it, a lot of landlords appreciate that. Course, being where you are all this might not even matter and you’ll get one credit report and be on board. So I’ll talk more about roommates. 

I know Mickey had college roommates, and he has high standards of cleanliness and presentation. I think he’ll make a good roommate except for the neat-freak factor, which might cause an international incident or two. While you and Josh really haven’t had non-familial roommates before (wait… you haven’t, have you?) I think the aspect of moving in with friends has worked out for us up here in SF. It gives you a base. Kinda weird for us cause it’s a couple/couple setup. Knowing the homepie I don’t foresee any such even splits. What I do foresee… 

Well, gee, that’s the only part that really gets my imagination whirling is how things will fall into place. It was always my opinion, and I would guess a popular one, that our little group always balanced out between the four personalities. It wasn’t that easy for one person to be left out, there’s always at least one person you can talk to about whatever problem you have, hell we even seat evenly in cars. So having one person permanently removed outta-whacks things. It is, to some degree, like Mickey during college. We got used to that. But we could still visit when we wanted, it was reasonable. 

It would be harder now, but (now that I mention it) I’m planning on coming down to Socal starting by the 12th until I fly to Missouri on the 18th. Dunno what the situation would be then. I know that until then I’m probably a topic of conversation from time to time (just a guess :-P). Lots of catching up to do. I want to go to Burning Man this year, I remember talking about that with you. We were high and everyone thought it’d be AWESOME. But, we were high. Still like to go with slices if possible. 

If you don’t get an apartment together no one named “Billy” will think less of youse. It might work, but then again there’s issues. Josh wants two years. Mickey doesn’t know what to do with an almost-degree and I would assume has some student loans chasing him in his fever-dreams. Plus there’s the whole “when WILL the Homepie escape the confines of Coachella Valley altogether?” That’s more something I get to ask since you’re all happy as plums, from what seems to me. That’s ok for the moment. I know you haven’t forgotten me. This Pie has survived longer periods of separation and endured greater feats of dis-coordination. Hell, the lack of melodrama from my favorite friends has been a healthy and stable influence in my life, even if the influence is less than it once was. 

How that’s for a ramble? I have no earthly idea if this text will ever be useful to you but I liked writing it. Keeping in touch feels nice, and talking on the phone only goes so far. Thanks for the glot comment. You made my day even better than it already was. 

all that I am,

P.S. Oh yeah… oops. Cross out every instance referring to “apartment” with “house.” Cross out “landlord” and put “real estate agent.”

I hate to tell you, but it sounded to me like you weren’t snarky at all. So I gotta say I’m sorry, cause the last bit felt like honest soliciting of advice and I can’t help you beyond what you already know. As a matter of fact, it seems like you have it more or less right. Partly you wanna scram asap, partly you know that what time you have left there is precious too short. Shit. That’s exactly it. Exactly. So do what you’re doing, and you’ll be fine. For awhile might wish it were less simple but it ain’t.

So what can I say? What I’ve found makes me happy is meeting my own challenges and being content with that. It’s the only thing that ever has, besides the occassional long hot bath, amazing new artist discovery, bizarre once-in-a-lifetime experience, etc, etc. I thought for a little while I was going through another ‘ism’ phase, hedonism. I was gonna blog about it. But then I realized that, no, this is just the part of myself I’d been wanting to explore for a long time.

I set out to Australia to figure out how to interact with girls, with people in general, to get a cool apartment and expand my friends beyond the American. I wanted to improve myself in those ways cause I felt unsatisfied with my own behaivior. And my life was mostly a struggle, mostly worry, I had fun, but blew a whole load of money doing it. A year later: here I am, I have a French-Canadian friend in Spain, one on the Isle of Wight, and another who just came back from Cambodia. I have what I am convinced is one of the most enviable young-person’s apartment in the entire city. I have an awesome girlfriend with whom I go to incredibe events all the time. I don’t mean to brag, but I wanna say that I’m really enjoying my life right now. My parents want me to go back to school. But I don’t, so I won’t. And it’s been kind of weird figuring out that past a certain point of becoming stable and solvent and sustainable, you don’t have to work for it. I haven’t, lately. As Lynae so astutely put: “it’s really weird just being happy, isn’t it?”

So there’s me, right now. And I think that’s you, in the future. I don’t know what it’ll look like, obviously, and I think it’s good to fantasize like you have (sidenote: Cory Doctorow? Really? They let that man blather to students about Steampunk PDAs and copyrighted subway maps and how many robots can dance on the head of a pin? Bloglines, yes… student loans, no). I think just figuring what you want from yourself is the hardest part. Second hardest is sticking to it.

the best +1,