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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

’36, Night Crashers 2

“Night Crasher” was a famous storm (perhaps even hurricane) which — you might be surprised to learn — was actually promoted by Hollywood and its movie stars in 1936. There are posters and other artifacts which I find fascinating and puzzling. Why promote a storm, and how did they know it was coming? Was it a real storm? I’m fairly certain it was a real film, as was alive to remember its decades-late sequel “Night Crasher 2”, released in the early ’90s.

A quaint, yellowed old-timey map shows a staggered row of island groups between the latitude above Australia and south of the equator. Never before have I seen these islands so presented (either grouped, or as a timeline) showing the odd order they were discovered, claimed, and settled. The map is even illustrated with cute icons to be helpful and memorable. Once again, this map was actually promoted by Hollywood media types at the time (so perhaps also from the 1930s).


I’m a small spry man of indeterminate age riding as a passenger in a car’s backseat. My companions and I travel at night in drizzly rain through an unfamiliar neighborhood. I’m not too familiar with my companions either, but they’ve also never been here. There’s an unacknowledged tension — as if we are all on a mission none of us signed up for. I weigh the balance of providing directions versus disturbing the group dynamic.

Soon it must be tested anyway; we arrive at our first destination. I tromp up a steep hillside of industrial scree to the curved wall of a concrete bunker. I’m the only one to have dealt with these people before, at some village-scale trade negotiations. With the vantage from climbing I now can see into their unobscured control room — no ceiling, disorderly but oft-used, a place of daily work for the overworked. We are summarily buzzed in and I must hop quickly after my taller male companion, as the timed doors close promptly after me.

An insouciant gray-haired lady greets us by suggesting we wait and go play table tennis. My companion is young and likes tasks requiring only brawn. He needs handholding, so I try to assure him that he simply doesn’t understand their ways here: they mean no disrespect, neither is it some kind of test. We really do only have to kill time. And pleasantly there is an actual pool table (or close enough).

After a while I leave through a different door within this compound, wanting to go outside to break up the time. Unexpectedly I encounter what must be the concert of the season going on… many people I know in wider social circles are seated across loads of metal balconies in this half stadium, all reveling. I’m glad I’m there: a few friends start hanging off the balcony rails; by chance I know the structure’s particular weaknesses. Once again I weigh the prudence of sharing advice. I’m glad I do share it this time, though.

Returning to the main room of the place, this industrial business compound, I meet up with my occasional friend Chloe. A great song starts playing and we spontaneously dance around the pool table. Turned away, with our butts pressed together, she offers a friendly warning: “don’t think this means any more than what it really does”. While playfully bumping/humping her from behind I respond in kind by quoting Rick Astley, “you know the game, and so do I.” This response lands well and I’m glad we’re on the level.

In my wallet I save keepsake political art made to look like dollar bills. These are even valid currency in some odd cases. I am only reminded when I go to pay for something (maybe the jukebox?) and I notice a $39 bill. It’s collectible, a feminist pro-union message as I recall, supporting daycare access for working women. Another one is an otherwise normal boring $10 bill. It’s design is so incredibly plain and modern that the overall effect strangely exotic. A sleeper hit, I guess we’d call it.

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Dream Journal

Finch Finch? Nope, just Finch

I navigate up a river flowing over large rocks. People walking up it. Find refuge at a covered patio belonging to a women who set it up as a rescue facility. She’s a traveler like myself and I’m not currently in need of a rescue. I see myself as more of an ornamental garden hermit.

Playing a card game to pass the time on a bus — where the cards are made of cash money. Digging in the compost bin, I rediscovery modified dollar bills with cute names written on them: Ankylosaurus, Potato, Peanut

Doing a cleaning job. A martini glass holding, instead of ice cubes, a single huge ice cube is being sold.

A woman introduces herself as named Finch. “Finch Finch?” (first and last), I ask. “Nope, just Finch.”

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Dream Journal

They’re Painting My Home, Badly

Landlord has started painting our apartment building. I discover this sporadically, noticing the sudden changes, and never see his workers. Ugly strange patterns in garish colors, dappled sponges (like in the ’90s). I have to find him and complain, having this lack of control and this poor taste is unlivable. Usually he doesn’t do much work — and usually we don’t even complain about serious stuff. But before I can get him, I peek out into the entrance hallway and it’s transformed by a second coat into a surprisingly acceptable if bland two-tone blue.

A couple teenagers steal a bag of UK Pound coins. They dash haphazardly out into the street and spill it on the pathway of a public park, inviting everyone to grab one.

An advertisement navigates down a scenic but underdeveloped street in San Francisco, a slight slope with scrubby greenbelt on either side. Though the ad substitutes a silly marketing phrase, I eventually imagine looking to a street sign and recognize it as Jones from my time as delivery man. I picture what a single land plot would be, snug perhaps, but the kind of multi-level house that would be built in SF would accommodate several people. And it’s a few long, long rows.

Inspecting my art aquaintence Colin Fahrion’s collection of old banknotes. Ones from Bolivia, Brazil, others. In their pleasant little folios they have a fine canvas texture, yet seem to feel like tragedy, as if they bare the weight of political events long ago that they could’ve changed. Beautiful, cursed money.

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Dream Journal

Retiring Rich in a Communist State

Climbing a metal tree I’m older, almost retired. Might be moving to India soon. I climb twice as high as I have before; the metal tree has two identical levels. In my living will are plans to donate all my possessions to the state (a communist state), for official commemoration and redistribution — on reflection though, I need more conditions in case I still need to use it.

In a bit I’m dropping off thousands of dollars (or perhaps picking up) from a locked room. It’s one in a long public hallway, stuffy 1970s construction (but not without its charm) a residence of my friend Dara Vinne. I’m one of the very few rich in this society, and so I worry about the risk of stepping out the door. So many people could know I’m here by now.

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Dream Journal

Missed Opportunities, Missed Everything

Someone rediscovers an old secret of mine, that when I was in high school I got a letter of acceptance into Yale but never followed up on it. I lost the letter and chose to forget about it over the years. I’m embarrassed but also just don’t know what to say. I don’t have an explanation for why I left behind the opportunity, it just… slipped away.

Later on I’m at a swap meet near a terraced park. I’m packing up some metal rods embedded in parking lot asphalt into the truckbed, hopefully to sell. Their partially dug already, and it turns out a vendor there already decided they weren’t worth it and gave up. That same vendor has just sold a small black heart-shaped vessel for $302, a vessel I sold to them only a few days ago for $16. I calculate it immediately in the dream as $285, oddly off by one. For a variety of reasons, I’m not actually upset — although the way he told me, it seems what he expected.

Then I’m cleaning up the park after the show. Walking away with my arms full I see I’ve missed some vape tips in the dirt. I’ll get them another time, I think. I go to visit a group of friends in a further-away part of the bay. I pass their apartment and open a heavy door to a tiny bare windowless ground floor apartment, somewhere no human should live of their own free will. I know it must be hella expensive, too. I go next door to see my friends and their place is the same, but twice as wide.

As I’m driving home, I’m dropping off one of the girls at her subway stop. The town is like New Orleans, her stop is named Mystic, and it’s practically right by the swap meet earlier. Just as we get there she begins to try sweet-talking me into driving her across the bay. She’s cute, might’ve worked, but I see pretty clearly how it’s manipulating my attraction. There’s no actual feelings from her.

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Dream Journal

Bed Rides, Reverse Dine-n-Ditch, Floating Telepathy, City Hall

Riding an oversized bunk bed with a few acquaintances and a cute (but nervous & skeptical) toddler. At the top of a stairway, we all slide down, holding onto the bed railings and play-screaming.


Leaving a low-ceilinged semi-outdoor restaurant without paying… I instead end up across the street and pay the tab that belonged to Mickey and his friends. I pay more, meddling with social order, and the action is both self-evidently ethical and appealingly subversive.


Walking down the median of a busy street in a caftan and sandals, an ethnically Mideastern young kid hops out of his dad’s car to say hi and ask me about myself. I realize it’s because he’s excited to finally see someone else who dresses like his family. I turn the corner and pass a Walmart where I overhear someone flub the word ‘teleport’ — I telepathically correct them as they huff past the painted white brick walls.


Sort of flying, sort of floating. I go very high up, above City Hall, which is cavernous and lavishly renovated, with expansive enclosed spaces of exposed wooden beams. The roof is more utilitarian, simple tarpaper with a steel rod decorated with religious iconography. Peering over the side, I can see it’s twice as tall as Grace Cathedral nearby. Perhaps it has the air of Seattle.

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Glot

10 Things I would buy if The Hostel paid me

It’s possible I might get paid to redesign the San Francisco hostel’s website. Money would be good. With that in mind:

  1. food
  2. a circle tattoo
  3. Keith and the Girl Live! California+Boston
  4. cool new thrift store clothes
  5. a monthy bus pass
  6. new socks
  7. new shoes to go with them
  8. a ticket to Palm Springs to visit Homepie
  9. [something I choose not to reveal on a public forum]
  10. true happiness (and more food)
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Glot

We’re coming to Aus-tral-ee-uh

BUNAC work visa, 2-night accomodations, orientation in Sydney, and Lonely Planet guidebook: $595

Inclusive 7-month traveler’s insurance: $379

Round trip airfare (including tax) to Australia: $1414.29

International Youth Travel Card to get huge airfare discount: $17.50

Total cost of getting there: $2405.79
Total money in the bank: $2396.46


Dammit. Can someone loan me nine dollars and thirty-three cents?