Posts categorized “Dreams”

Monday, 20 March 2017

The James Bond Dance Dream, Co-Starring Charlize Theron

Theron… Charlize Theron.

Theron… Charlize Theron.

You know those dreams where you’re supposed to do something really important, but you didn’t know about it or prepare for it? The most common instance being you’re supposed to take a test or give a presentation in school but you’re completely unprepared for it. Y’know?

That was the kind of dream I had a few nights ago. There was some big Hollywood awards show—not the Oscars or anything, but big enough to have in a huge theater like that. There was going to be an interstitial between awards that featured a “James Bond-Themed” dance set to Duran Duran’s Bond Theme, “A View to a Kill.” In case you’re unfamiliar with that song, here it is:

The dance was to be performed by Charlize Theron wearing a black gown. My job was to operate the spotlight. At the last minute, the producer and director of the show called me over to the side of the state and told me that they’d decided I should get in a tux and go up on stage and join Charlize as James Bond. Charlize’s part of the dance had been completely choreographed, but the producer of this awards show literally told me to “wing it!” Hilariously, since they hadn’t planned on throwing me up there until the last minute, I was not given a prop gun, just a laser pointer that I was supposed to pretend was a Walther PPK.

The dance started out excellently. I was manning the spotlight. The stage went dark, and I turned on the spotlight. As the opening strain of the James Bond theme started playing, Charlize walked out into the spotlight, spun and fired a prop pistol directly at the spotlight, which flared bright and then went dark, mimicking the “gun sight” openings of the James Bond movies.

As “A View to a Kill” started playing, I had to rush down from the spotlight perch and head up the main aisle in my tux and climb up on stage.

Y’know how dreams like this are usually panic-inducing? Well, image instead that you embraced the whole “winging it” philosophy and had an absolute blast. Instead of trying to dance, I acted like the silhouette of Roger Moore in his James Bond opening numbers, striding around and posing and pointing my laser-pointer “gun.” Then I realized I could actually tell a story with this whole thing.

There was one part where Charlize was choreographed to head way off to one side of the stage, then quickly dance across to the other side. When she moved off to the side I was in focus on centerstage. I quickly spun around like I just noticed someone behind me, then slam, sprawled on my back as if I had been shot dead. Charlize started her dance across the stage to the other side, and right at the moment where she crossed behind me, I spasmed as if I had been hit with a defibrillator. When she reached the other edge of the stage I sat up, groggy, and instead of going back into Roger Moore posing, I started acting dazed, stuttering around Charlize as she danced, studying her every move.

Charlize, like a trooper, started playing to me instead of to the audience at this point, and the dance became a story about a man who was killed and then brought back to life as James Bond by Charlize’s femme fatale. By the end of it I was acting in full-on confident James Bond mode again.

It was hecka fun and funny. The audience of celebrities seemed to enjoy it as well.

Categories: Dreams, Music.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

My Crystal Meteorites on the Moon Dream

Crystal Meteorite

Begaa Crystal Meteorite NWA 4910 LL3.1 – Photo by Jeff Barton Creative Commons License

Last weekend I had an awesome sci-fi movie dream. I haven’t head a good, memorable dream in quite a while (almost exactly a year ago as it turns out) so this was very exciting. This dream movie starred:

  • Me
  • My Wife
  • My Daughter (non-featured role)
  • An unknown, middle-aged actress with very short gray hair. She seemed very familiar, but I can’t quite place who she is. I bet I’d recognize her if I saw a photo of her.
  • Chris Pratt as “Chris Pratt.”
  • At least one other character, possibly an African-American male (non-featured role)
Chris Pratt is in this movie!

“No way. I’m in this movie? No way!”

The premise of this dream movie was that many years ago a lunar expedition (my brain thought it was probably robot-only, but that was never actually mentioned in the dream by any of the characters) set up a permanent structure on the dark side of the lunar surface with the goal of Terraforming the moon to have a breathable atmosphere and Earth-normal gravity at the surface. The six (or more) characters in the movie were all on a transport shuttle/spaceship of some sort (no idea where we were coming from or going to) that had a major malfunction and was forced to land on the lunar surface near this structure.

Whatever the malfunction, it completely wrecked the ship’s propulsion and communications. We were stranded on the moon with no way to get back to Earth or a way to communicate with Earth to let them know where we were. We setup residence in the fully-stocked structure.

This situation was rather depressing for some, especially the character played by the middle-aged actress, who sported a uniform very similar to Ripley’s outfit from the original Alien, leading me to believe she was the pilot of the ship. The dream started in earnest from that point:

Sitting forlornly in a 1960s-style spherical chair and gazing out the window, the Pilot mused about how we were stuck there. My wife, holding my bundled-up daughter (my daughter’s only actual appearance in the dream) more optimistically pointed out that the base was fully-stocked with more food than we could ever eat, and the view was lovely.

I looked out the large, circular window just in time to see a brilliant meteorite tumble down and strike the lunar surface some miles away. It was a very unusual meteorite in that it sparkled brilliantly with a rainbow of colors, and when it smashed into the lunar surface it didn’t so much explode as it set off a miniature pyrotechnic display of beautiful, prismatic colors that seemed to reflect off the ground around it like thousands of mini jewels.

“Wow!” I shouted. “Did you see that?”

The Pilot nodded, but seemed unimpressed. My wife agreed it was very pretty, but seemed more interested in making sure the moonbase was livable.

Chris Pratt came to talk to me some time later and informed me that he thought he’d figured out how to get the terraforming to actually work, but he needed my help.

Apparently in this dream I was some kind of engineer, because Chris Pratt and I got the terraforming process to successfully start, but it took weeks of work. During that time the sparkly meteorites continued to fall in the distance. It seemed like the frequency might be increasing, and sometimes now there were two that fell at the same time in close proximity to each other. Around this time I realized how bizarre it was that these meteorites would be so bright seeing as how there was no atmosphere on the moon (yet) to ignite them as would happen to a meteorite on the way to Earth.

Eventually the terraforming process took hold, and a long while (weeks? months? years?) later the moon had a lush, cloudless, blue sky, and we could all walk around outside without spacesuits. It was a bit chilly (probably in the mid-40s), but otherwise it was very breathable. And it had Earth-normal gravity at the surface. Much progress had also been made in repairing the ship; a bridge had even been constructed between the second floor of the moonbase and the main hatch of the spaceship. Meteorites continued to periodically fall, but falling through the atmosphere only made them sparkle even more brightly, with a blinding, glittery, white light instead of an intense rainbow of colors. They also seemed to fall very slowly, almost gliding down to the ground. They only ever impacted beyond the horizon, though.

It was when I was cranking a wrench in an open hatch on the ground level of the ship that a meteorite crashed to the ground right in between the moonbase and the ship, barely missing the bridge between them. I immediately ran around the spaceship, and though I missed the actual impact I saw its immediate aftermath.

The meter-wide meteorite had smashed open. It was, in fact, a very thin shell with a rocky interior but an interior like a brightly-polished mussel shell. It had shattered into thousands of inch-wide triangular shards that littered the ground for a few meters around the impact site. It was this site, though, that really grabbed my attention.

Around the center of the impact site a ring of emerald crystals had formed, maybe a meter in diameter. And from the center of this ring came sprouting a most fantastic crystalline structure. It grew upwards (think of Elsa’s castle from Frozen) in all the brilliant gemstone colors, with offshoots reaching out from a central ruby stem like brittle glass petals in fantastic emerald, sapphire, tourmaline, and clear colors. At the head of the stem was a bright crystalline structure that seemed to be lit from within. It looked remarkably like the classic illustration of the head of a virus:

Crystal Virus

Virus structure. Source

As I watched it rapidly grew to about four or five feet high, then began to list over to one side and slow. Soon the internal light died out and it stopped growing completely. I stared at this fantastical structure for several seconds, then excitedly yelled for Chris Pratt to come take a look at this! He poked his head out of the spaceship’s main hatch, then quickly scrambled down to join me in gawking at this marvelous thing.

Cut to: Chris Pratt and I in a classic moon buggy, racing across the lunar surface under a bright blue sky. We skid to a halt at the site of another meteorite impact miles away from the moonbase and get out. The ground around the impact site is completely littered with those thin, triangular shards that were rocky on one side and highly-polished on the other. Thinking back to the first meteorite that we saw, I remembered how the ground around the impact seemed to glitter brightly and realized that the ground had already been littered with these reflective shards before that meteorite struck. But unlike the recent strike near the moonbase, this impact site had no evidence of a virus-looking crystalline structure.

We got back in the moon buggy and drove to several other impact sites. In a handful of them we found similar-looking, leaning-over structures like the one near the base. But most of them were empty. The further out we got from the moonbase, the more the entire lunar surface seemed to be covered in those weird, triangular shards.

Eventually we headed back. Chris Pratt said that the ship was almost fixed, and that the best thing to do was concentrate on getting us all home, then we could come back with some actual scientists and study whatever-the-heck was going on.

A few days (?) later is when I made my discovery. I was walking around the moonbase, when I discovered something in a cranny in the exterior of the structure. I didn’t notice it at first, because it almost looked like just a natural grouping of rocks nestled up against the building. But the sun caught them in just such a way that they sparkled, and I veered over to take a closer look. It wasn’t a pile of rocks; it was a pile of what looked to be random glass things. About two to three inches long each, there were a variety of shapes that were all vaguely sea-shell or crustacean looking. It looked kind of like one of those places that makes tiny glass baubles in the shapes of animals had just dumped a bunch of rejects into a pile.

I leaned closer, wondering where they could have come from. I picked one up that looked kinda like an unrolled pill bug (aka potato bug). It fit neatly into the palm of my hand, and looking closer at it I saw that it looked like a solid, crystal shell filled with a clear liquid.

I bent to put it down and pick up another one, but before I could even let go of the first one they all scattered like cockroaches from the light, dozens of little glass baubles skittering off in every direction! The one still in my hand sprouted several pointy legs and grabbed onto my hand with them. It didn’t hurt, but to say I was startled would be an understatement. I instinctively shook my hand to dislodge it and it flung up into the air. I watched, and the movie went into a slow-motion closeup of the crystalline entity. As it flew though the air it transformed from a crystal into a glob of clear liquid, that splashed when it hit the ground. I looked around and noticed a handful of the other scattering glass creatures were randomly splashing against rocks like that.

My hand was uninjured; no puncture wounds or anything. So I squatted down to look at the minuscule puddle on the ground near my feet. It slowly started to condense, and a tiny, virus-looking crystalline structure rose out of the liquid until there was no liquid left; just a crystal lying on the ground. Looking around I saw the skittering had mostly stopped; a couple of the creatures were just randomly ambling around. I walked over to another little puddle as a crystal started to rise out of it. I put my finger out and touched the crystal, and watched as two little “legs” formed out of the liquid and lightly grabbed the tip of my finger. Looking more closely at the liquid I could see that there was a tiny dark spot floating in it. Maybe a nucleus? I slowly lifted my finger upwards, and the crystal hung on, coming upwards with it and pulling the glob of liquid off the ground below it. It was dangling from my finger, half crystal and half liquid. I carefully moved it over and put it right into another little puddle and watched as it shifted entirely back into liquid and merged with the puddle on the ground. Now I was looking at a puddle with two dark spots in it. It formed more crystal legs that grabbed back onto my finger, and as I lifted it up it formed into a delicate, jellyfish-looking solid structure. But peering through the surface I could see the interior was still liquid, and the two dark spots seemed to look out at me like two expressionless eyes.

It crawled up into my hand, and as it moved I realized that it didn’t really have joints or anything. The parts that moved turned into liquid and then re-formed as crystal. I realized that this was a creature that could control its own phase-shift between liquid and solid. It could crystallize itself at will, into presumably any shape.

The way they moved didn’t seem to imply any great intelligence; they moved across the ground like your run-of-the-mill insects. It was obvious that they’d come from the meteorites. I remembered that many of the impact sites Chris Pratt and I had visited didn’t have a big, crystalline structure sticking up out of them and I wondered if the huge, unmoving structure that I saw rise out of the impact site was indicative of a failed landing. The meteorite had died when it hit, unsuccessful at releasing its living contents for whatever reason; a stillbirth. The sites missing the big structure had successfully formed these little crystal creatures, which I presume had randomly scampered off.

Needless to say, this was all terrifically exciting.

I ran off to show Chris Pratt. I saw him walking across the bridge between the moonbase and the rocket and shouted up to him. He looked down at me, then seemed to notice something out of the corner of his eye. He looked up and shouted, “Oh sh–”

I followed his gaze upwards and saw a meteorite—the biggest one yet—screaming down out of the sky, straight for Chris Pratt. It smashed through the bridge just inches away from Pratt, smashing the bridge to splinters and slamming into the ground with such force that I was knocked onto my back. I looked up just in time to see Chris Pratt flying backwards off the shattered bridge… and straight down onto my head.

The screen was black for several seconds, then I could hear muffled voices (my wife and someone else), and could feel hands trying to simultaneously drag Chris Pratt off my face and drag me out from under him. I assume I’d been knocked unconscious. I vaguely heard someone say, “Lazer Blast is dead!” but I didn’t know to whom that referred. Was that the Pilot’s nickname? It had never before been said before about anyone in the dream. I wasn’t sure if Chris Pratt was dead or not, but his limp body was eventually removed from my face and I saw my wife asking if I was okay, and there was someone else there (possibly an African-American male in the same Alien-style uniform as the Pilot had been wearing earlier) looking down at me.

Beyond them I saw a massive crystalline structure rising up between the ship and the moonbase, already taller than the shattered bridge had been, and part of it was scraping against the moonbase and tearing it pretty much to shreds. It slowed and stopped as I watched, its interior glow dying completely out when it was almost as tall as our spaceship.

“We gotta go,” my wife hissed at me as she tried to haul me to my feet. “Chris Pratt fixed the spaceship, we gotta get outta here.” The sky was beginning to fill with brilliant streaks as more meteorites entered the moon’s atmosphere.

The movie kinda puttered out from here. We somehow successfully blasted off in the spaceship (though it never showed us getting into it nor taking off) and got back into space. Chris Pratt wasn’t actually dead, but he was knocked out pretty badly by the fall. Again, the dream movie didn’t actually show me that; I just kinda “knew.” We weren’t on the lunar surface anymore, so I guess we’d essentially “won” the dream, and I woke up shortly thereafter.


I want to give a big thanks to the dream people in my head for crafting such an excellent dream. Bravo, folks.

Categories: Dreams.

Monday, 17 February 2014

An Alien Invasion Dream with a Surprise Twist Ending!


Original photo by Andy Magee.

I have to tell you about this dream I had last night. Okay? Okay!

It started off as a standard Alien Invasion type of movie (yes, movie; it had camera angles and edits and was in 3rd person perspective). There were UFO sightings all over the world, but only at night. The UFOs were pretty standard flying-saucer types, but with a lot of blue and green neon accents. Very cool visuals. Each one was only about as long as a city bus.

Pretty soon they started showing up en masse, descending on cities all over the world. Everyone started to panic and run around. A family of which I my character was a member—a teenaged son I believe (yes, in the dream I was not playing myself, and the family had no real-world counterpart; they were just made up for this dream)—piled into a van and there was a really cool action scene of us trying to escape the pursuit of a couple of these Flying Saucers. The van would screech down city streets, the water on the nighttime roads throwing off crazy reflections of the neon Flying Saucers darting overhead, dodging other vehicles and panicking pedestrians.

The van skidded around a corner, across a small bridge over a canal, and down an alley that turned out to be completely congested with vehicles and fleeing people, fleeing in the opposite direction we were going. We screeched to a stop. Three more Flying Saucers were chasing everyone towards us down the alley as the two pursing us popped around the corner behind us and started closing in.

That’s when the Flying Saucers started shooting.

Bright green bursts appeared on the bottom of the Flying Saucers, and everything below them suddenly shuddered as if struck by a giant, invisible blanket. Then quickly gravity started to dissolve and everything underneath the Saucers became weirdly weightless and floated away from the ground, helpless people and vehicles alike, with drops of water sparkling all around and pebbles and stones rising up amongst them.

Then a dark blue blast shot down from the center bottom of the Saucer and struck a vehicle. It instantly collapsed in on itself for a moment like a black hole had been placed inside it, then a white sphere of light shot out of it for just a moment, then there was nothing but a quickly-falling amount of dust. The vehicle was just gone.

The Saucers started steadily advancing towards our van, picking off the helpless, floating people and vehicles with ease, each time a flash of dark blue light, a split-second sense that the object or person was collapsing inward, then a bright sphere of light and a pile of dust.

Seeing that there was no way that we could drive forward any more, and noticing that the Saucers were only attacking things on the street, I noticed an open door on the building to our left and ordered my family out of the van and inside. As we clambered out of the van towards the building, a terrified person nearby crouched down next to his car and clung onto the wheel for dear life. I remember thinking, “Those Saucers can make cars levitate. Does he really think that grabbing onto one is going to make him safe?”

Sure enough, bing-zap-poof, he had been levitated and reduced to dust.

We hid in the abandoned building as the Saucers efficiently went about their work outside, flashes of green and blue and white light peeking through the slats in the boarded-up windows. The noise and screams got steadily less and less, and soon the Saucers seemed to move on.

That’s when I noticed some movement in the darkness of the building. It was an alien in a space suit. It looked a lot like the classic “gray” alien: big head, almond-shaped black eyes. But it had the skeletal grin of the Mars Attacks aliens.

The dream jumped around quite a bit at this point. We escaped from the alien somehow. I realized that he was a ground spotter: he was part of a vast crew of aliens who directed the Saucers from the ground to make sure they didn’t miss any people, and also who went through the building themselves to clean them out. They had guns that did the same collapse-flash-dust special effect on any organic matter they shot (but only organic matter).

The dream jumped to much later in the story when all the cities had been abandoned. I’m not sure what happened to my family, but I was with a wild-eyed, ex-military guy. We were holed up in a small house somewhere in a wooded area. I had a gun. We were playing cat-and-mouse with an armed alien. The military guy lured the alien towards me and I got the drop on him and leaped out, firing my gun and shouting a mighty battle cry. The bullets *tinked* off the alien’s suit as it staggered backwards, until the 4th of 5th bullet managed to puncture something and it slumped forward to the ground.

Apparently this part of the dream was so intense that I actually did my battle cry out loud, in my sleep, in the real world, waking my wife (but thankfully not my baby). She shook me awake. “What’s wrong?” she asked.

“…Aliens,” I mumbled.

I was quickly back to sleep. Much more time had passed in the dream. Most of the entire surface of the planet had been reduced to dust. I and a group of people (I think my family was in there) were fleeing through corn fields because for some reason the aliens didn’t zap corn. And they were only about four feet tall, so it seemed an easy feat to lose them in the corn.

As our group exited the far end of the cornfield, though, we were confronted by a dark, dust-covered world. All organic matter was gone. And a massive Flying Saucer, easily 100 yards wide, descended down towards us. Its underside flashed green and we all started to lose our grip on the ground and float upwards. There was a dark-blue flash and a bright white flash in our eyes and then…

We were all standing, disoriented, in a room of some sort, brightly illuminated with pure white walls. Standing in front of us, smiling, were all the people we’d known who earlier in the movie had been zapped by the aliens. They weren’t dead at all, they explained. Those beams didn’t disintegrate things; they were teleportation beams! The aliens were trying to remove as much of the Earth’s population of plants, animals, and humans because their advanced sensors had discovered that our sun was about to jettison out a massive solar flare that would overwhelm the Earth’s magnetic field and completely immolate the entire planet, killing everyone and everything.

The aliens weren’t killing off humanity; they were saving it!

A giant monitor appeared on one of the walls, and a woman exclaimed, “Look! It’s about to happen!” On the screen the Earth appeared, and towards it rushed an enormous jet of flame, many times larger than the puny planet. It slammed into and engulfed the Earth. The magnetic field parted it for just a moment before the flames punched straight through and consumed the entire surface of the planet, transforming it into a glowing ember, like a dying piece of charcoal in the night.

A woman explained that the alien’s methods of communicating were so different from humans that they could not figure out a way to tell us their intentions, so they just went ahead and tried to save us anyway. I felt really bad about killing that one alien, but someone reassured me that the aliens knew that there would be casualties but that it was worth it to save an entire planet.

“But where are we?” I asked.

“Our new home,” someone said. A massive door opened up in the far side of the room and revealed a distinctly Earth-like vista: a field and a forest and mountains in the background, with Earth birds flying through the sky. “They managed to teleport almost everything directly to this new planet.”

Then I woke up.


Anyways, I’m off now to see the Hellfyre Club perform their musics at The Crocodile.

Categories: Dreams.

Friday, 27 September 2013

The Jeep Pervert Dream

Jeep Photo by Bryce David

Photo by Bryce David, who is not a Jeep Pervert as far as I know. Creative Commons License

On Wednesday night I had a very funny dream. This was one of those dreams that I’m not even in. It’s like there’s a movie playing in my head, complete with camera angles and edits. Here’s how this one went:

Two men have pulled a successful heist and have gotten away with a bunch of money in their SUV. One of them is a little older & grizzled, kinda like James Caan how he looked in the 1990s, but maybe a bit leaner. The other guy is a taller, wiry, and slightly balding redhead with short-shorn hair and a goatee. He looks kinda like a cross between first-season-Mythbusters Adam Savage and Jesse Tyler Ferguson from Modern Family.

The two are traversing the back roads of the American Southwest on their way to Mexico. In order to avoid any chance of exposure, they decide not to stop at gas stations to refuel, and only to siphon gas from parked vehicles. They discover that many cars nowadays don’t have easy access to the gas cap; you have to break into the car and pull a little lever to open the gas cap. This is an unacceptable risk to the two thieves.

But they soon discover that Jeeps have completely-exposed gas caps, so they pledge to siphon gas from nothing but Jeeps from here on out.

They successfully suck gas from Jeeps in the middle of the night and continue south for an entire day until they get low on gas again. It gets dark, and then they find a poorly-lit (but huge) parking lot that is behind some sort of bar or maybe a casino. Cars frequently come and go, even in the middle of the night, but it would be easy to hide from view and siphon the gas from a Jeep. Unfortunately there are none in the parking lot!

The two decide to settle in for a stakeout. The Grizzled Guy wants to sleep first, so he makes the Wiry Ginger keep first watch.

Be sure to wake me if you see a Jeep pull in.

Sure thing! No problem!

Grizzled Guy promptly dozes off. Wiry Guy takes his task seriously, and intensely and with high-energy watches for any possible sign of a Jeep entering the parking lot. He is seriously wired, bouncing up and down in his seat, his bugged-out eyes darting back and forth at any sign of movement. He is grinning like an idiot, so excited at the possibility of seeing a Jeep.

Finally, not one but TWO Jeeps independently pull into the parking lot. Wiry Guy squeals and bounces up and down in his seat, over-vigorously shaking Grizzled Guy away. Grizzled guy opens his eyes.

Two Jeeps! TWO JEEPS!!

Grizzled Guy groggily looks at just how overly-excited Wiry Guy is at seeing two jeeps. He shoves Wiry Guy’s hands away from him.

What are you, a Jeep Pervert?

At this point I woke up laughing. I couldn’t believe my dream people came up with the phrase “Jeep Pervert.”

Categories: Dreams.

Friday, 20 August 2010

The Perfect Pilot Baby Dream

I had a very Robotech/Starblazers/Gundam inspired dream a few nights ago.

I was a space fighter pilot in Earth’s space military: Ensign Chris Harris.

The enemy planet had been doing crazy stuff with genetic engineering, and I somehow discovered that they’d genetically engineered the “Perfect Pilot.” Well, an enemy fighter pilot (who was himself a genetically engineered person called a “Protoform” – but nobody from Earth knew what a “Protoform” was yet) decided to defect to Earth’s side and stole the Perfect Pilot, who had just been created and therefore was a newborn baby. A couple of my teammates and I arranged to sneak the Protoform and the baby into Earth territory.

We all met in a small, white room. It looked like it a cross between an airlock, a medical bay, and a locker room. The defector handed the baby over to one of my teammates, a woman, who started checking it over to make sure it was healthy and whatnot.

The defector was completely covered from head to toe, wearing a tight black bodysuit with silver stripes on it and a helmet that looked a lot like a cross between Samus’s helmet (from the Metroid Games) and a motorcycle helmet with a tinted visor, disallowing us from seeing his face. He and I were talking about something—I don’t remember what—when suddenly he said, “Oh. Oh, geez. Whoops!” He flipped up his visor and we watched in amazement as a completely featureless face very rapidly morphed into an exact replica of my face (except without a beard, because I didn’t have a beard in the dream).

The defector explained that he was a “Protoform”: a genetic blank slate of a person. He had accidentally “imprinted” himself with me and became my exact genetic duplicate; He looked and sounded exactly like me.

I got the idea to let the Protoform take my place so that I could raise the Perfect Pilot baby. I forged a new identity for myself as an ace mechanic and forged adoption papers for the baby. But I knew I would need help, and so I got someone to co-sign the adoption papers with me: Ensign Xavia Nova Olson, Earth’s most kick-ass space fighter pilot.

We raised the baby together for five years, at which point someone in the military took a closer look at our situation due to the fact that this five-year-old kid was already a better pilot than ANYONE else. So they discovered what we’d done, but even though they were pretty angry it was too late to really do anything about it since we’d raised the kid from infancy. And the Protoform (as “Chris Harris”) had proven himself to be an invaluable member of Earth’s military. So we only got stern reprimands but no real punishment. They just kinda wagged their fingers and said, “Well, you really shouldn’t have done that.”

That’s around the time that I woke up.

It was an interesting dream, but I could tell my dream people were kinda grasping at straws at various points. A lot of the scenery was taken straight out of Star Wars and the above-mentioned animé series. The term “Protoform” is actually from a couple of different incarnations of The Transformers. It’s what a Transformer is before it has an alternate mode, so it was kinda applicable to the defector’s genetic blank-slate state. And when my dream needed someone to help me raise the baby, my dream people went, “Quick, which one of Chris’s friends has the most science-fiction-sounding name!?” and came up with Xavia Nova Olson, whose name does indeed sound like it coulda come from Gundam Wing.

When I woke up I had the feeling that I was really only maybe halfway through the dream. I had the feeling that in the second half of the dream the enemy planet would have figured out where their Perfect Pilot had disappeared to and would have attacked us to try to get him back, and there would probably have been some big action scene and it would have turned out that one of my superior officers was the traitor who tipped off the enemy planet.

Categories: Dreams.

Friday, 4 June 2010

The Vintigglia Tapes/Chair

Last night I had an absolutely incredible dream. I woke up laughing several times, but forced myself immediately back to sleep because I wanted it to continue. And a couple of times I woke up in my dream just so I could explain the dream to people.

What was the dream about? It was about discovering a strange, rare, semi-legendary film/documentary that was made in the 1960s and worked on “for 30 years.” No official print of it was ever made, so there are only pieced-together versions based on what footage could be found. The film was called, as near as I can tell, The Vintigglia Tapes/Chair, though it was also just called Vintigglia for short.

It was one of the most meta films ever made because it was not only a fictional story, but it was simultaneously a documentary about the making of itself.

I only know the plot synopses because at one point during the movie (in the middle of a scene, no less) an interviewer with a microphone stepped up to the main character, a young man with a crappy 60s mustache, and asked, “What is this movie you’re making about?”

The young man, confused, took the microphone and used it as a pencil to write down the answer on a pad of paper. He wrote this synopsis:

A young man with a crappy 60s mustache searches for a mystical fork/chair combo.

I laughed and laughed. I would NEVER have been able to figure that synopsis out based on the footage I saw. I also loved that the microphone actually worked as a pencil. In fact, the interviewer/reporter tried to ask a few more questions, but the main character refused to answer them out loud; he just kept scribbling the answers on the paper with the microphone.

Let me tell you about the other scenes that I remember watching. First of all, I should mention that most of the movie was filmed in the same room or two of an apartment. It was supposed to take place in several locations, but they didn’t even try to dress up the apartment to make it look different. Also, the “special effects” in the movie were of public access television quality.

Example: Towards the beginning of the film (though I dreamed it towards the end of the dream), the Young Man with the Crappy 60s Mustache and his sidekick, a young man with enormous glasses (each lens five inches wide) whose entire face was one big burn scar (but not in a gross way), set out on their quest. For some reason they had to cover their faces with papier-maché and cross an ocean. There they were simultaneously attacked by a bird, which was played by a store-bought bird pinata, and a shark, which was 2-dimensional and made out of felt and construction paper. The shark ended up “eating” the bird (the pinata was pushed through a hole in the shark’s mouth between its felt teeth), allowing the heroes to escape. This whole scene was filmed in the apartment. The ocean was created by a couple of guys flopping a blue-and-white quilt around on the floor, and no effort whatsoever was made to hide them or the people who were puppeteering the bird and shark. Also, the sidekick kept on accidentally tearing the papier-maché on his face (mostly because it was plastered entirely over his humongous glasses and he couldn’t see at all) and commenting about it. But they kept that in the movie because it was a “documentary” about the “making of” The Vintigglia Tapes/Chair. A narrator, in fact, intruded to mention that the sidekick ripped his papier-maché mask, which was not supposed to happen.

Another scene filmed in the same apartment took place much later in the movie. It was a party of some sort, kind of the rich and snooty type. The host was talking to two guests who were sitting on a couch:

I’m so glad you could come!

Delighted to be here.

(stuffing hors-d’ouvres into his mouth)
Mmm… yes, yes…

(to Man)
I don’t suppose you’ve had time to make that jewelry that I ordered from you…?

(to Man)
Yes, do you think you could possibly finish it this year?

At that point the man and woman were attacked by a horrific, giant bird (yes, I see a theme there)! The special effect of the bird attack consisted of intercutting between the two guests screaming while still seated on a couch, and a still photograph of a bird. Every time it cut back to the bird, the photograph was slightly closer to the camera. Also, to heighten the tension, “¡Attenzione!” was superimposed across the bottom of the screen whenever the photograph was shown.

When the bird finally got close enough to attack (after about three or four rounds of cutting back and forth). It cut back to the screaming guests, who suddenly stopped screaming as an egg dropped in from the top of the screen. The man caught it without breaking it and looked at it, confused. It seemed the bird’s “attack” consisted of it trying to lay an egg on someone. The bird was never seen nor mentioned again.

At that point the main character and the sidekick entered the party. The sidekick went right up to the hors-d’ouvre table to find something to eat. He pulled from a bowl a frozen chicken cutlet. An incredibly befuddled expression came over his burned face, and he slapped himself on his lips with the frozen piece of chicken over and over again, while pleadingly looking at the main character as if to ask, “How am I supposed to eat this!?”

I’m pretty sure I woke myself up laughing at that point.

Some scenes weren’t filmed in the apartment. Some scenes were filmed outside.

One scene took place in a dusty and grassy field. It was filmed with low-quality 1960s film stock. Inside a convertible parked in this field, a greaser with a black leather jacket was having a serious conversation with a girl-next-door type of young woman. The narrator from Beyond the Valley of the Dolls was narrating over them. Without warning, it cut to a woman lying on her back in the field about 15 feet away from the car. She was dreamily rolling the back of her beehive hairdo into the dusty ground as the tall grass around her swayed gently in the breeze. The narrator said, “Sally, meanwhile, was still on drugs.” This cutaway with the exact same narration happened three times during the course of the scene.

Shortly after that was a sequence where a young woman (it could have been the same girl-next-door from the car scene; I’m not sure) and a young man with curly Greg Brady hair and wearing a red flannel shirt were frolicking at the base of a cliff, giggling and chasing each other and hiding behind rocky outcroppings and trees. A soft spring sun shone down around them. It was one of those goofy, innocent scenes that you can only really find in 1960s movies. Plus there was a light, breezy 1960s movie instrumental song playing in the background, the kind of song with violins and an acoustic guitar. But during the whole course of the scene, which was several minutes long, people’s names kept appearing in the lower right corner of the screen in a fancy script.

I was very confused by this, and I turned to Carrie (who was watching the movie with me at this point) and said, “Are those supposed to be credits? I don’t think any of those people are actually in this movie… or helped make it.”

Indeed, they just seemed to be randomly-generated names, or sometimes names of famous actors who clearly were not in Vintigglia. It was also very strange because the scene took place right around the middle of the movie.

Then on the lower left corner of the screen a name that I recognized appeared in sans-serif font: “Brian Michael Bendis.” The Brian Michael Bendis? The guy who is basically responsible for the direction of the Marvel universe for the past decade? I knew that the film was supposedly “worked on” through the mid-90s. Did Bendis have something to do with it?

This got me into research mode, so I decided to see what I could find out about Vintigglia. I discovered a fascinating academic debate as to whether or not the whole film was some sort of a hoax. None of the people who appeared in the film could be identified at all—none of them ever appeared in a single other movie, TV show, or even commercial, and a credit list was never actually written for the film during its production. Nobody had ever been able to match the faces of the actors in Vintigglia to anybody who was alive during its production. Also, nobody had ever been able to find in the real world the locations where the movie had been filmed. There were some scholars who thought there was a good chance that the whole film was relatively modern, and just used props, costumes, and film stock to make it look like it was filmed in the 60s.

Then while Carrie & I were looking through a tiny used bookstore, I happened upon a section of a small shelf that had a bunch of graphic novels and trade paperbacks written by Brian Michael Bendis. And there, nestled among the comics, was a hardback book. The spine read, “Vintigglia – Brian Michael Bendis.”

I eagerly snatched it up and flipped through it. It was an account of Bendis’s own research into the film after he discovered that his name was in it, and how he discovered various fragments of footage and the research that led him to be able to piece together an almost-definitive version (the version, it turns out, that we had been watching). He even believed that he had discovered the man who wrote, directed, and edited the movie, but the man had died the year before Bendis first heard of the film, and had left behind absolutely no records whatsoever so there was no way to verify anything.

The whole movie then began to take on this almost mystical quality. How was it made? Who were the people in the film? Why did nobody recognize any of them? It almost seemed as if it sprung into existence directly on the film itself, like how the creepy girl psychically imprinted images directly onto a video tape in The Ring. It was impossible for Vintigglia to exist, and yet we had watched it.

At several points during the night I “woke up” in my dream and—while still dreaming in real life—found various people I knew and told them how awesome this dream was. There were also at least two times when I “woke up” in the dream and thought, “That had to have been real, right? That movie was too awesome not to really exist!”

This was one of the best, most epic dreams I’ve had in a long time, and it was thoroughly enjoyable the whole way through. There were several points during the film where I clearly read stuff (Brian Michael Bendis’s name, the written-down plot synopses, and the Italian “¡Attenzione!”—I can even see the font for that one), so that whole myth about not being able to read in your sleep is completely busted. But I knew that; I periodically read stuff in my sleep. It was also hysterically funny. I give The Vintigglia Tapes/Chair four stars: ****

Categories: Dreams, Movies.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Rooms in the Attic

I was going through old writings, and I found this transcription of a dream I had back in November of 2008!

A couple of nights ago I had another one of my “building” dreams, wherein my dream people construct some sort of structure for me to explore. It happens with surprising frequency, and they’re some of my favorite dreams.

This one was a bit different, though, in that it was based on my own house:Carrie & I were hosting some sort of small party or something in the middle of the day. There were people over at our house. It was actually our real-life house with the correct layout and furniture and everything. Carrie, as usual, was spending most of the party in the kitchen making drinks and prepping food and all that fun stuff. At one point we ran out of something and I asked her where it was so I could grab some more.

“Oh,” she said, “I put it in the attic.”

“In the attic?” I was surprised. We’ve NEVER gone into the attic since we moved in here five years ago.

“Yeah,” Carrie said. “I got in one of my cleaning fits, and I ran out of stuff to clean down here so I started cleaning the attic. Come take a look!”

She led me out into the laundry room in the east end of the house where a panel in the ceiling led to the attic (in the real world this panel is in Carrie’s closet) and after a bit of wiggling she crawled up into it and then helped pull me up as well.

There was a rather small, cramped space up there, but with drywall and carpet instead of exposed beams. There was a window on the east wall that let in light. In the northwest corner of this area, though, was a very narrow hallway that went west a couple of feet. After one step down it opened up into a small, windowless, carpeted living room type of space with an angled roof. There was a leather couch on the east wall. The south and west walls were covered with cheap steel shelving, on which were displayed dozens and dozens of classic toys: Gaiking, a lion Voltron, and tons of other 80s toys.

Needless to say I was extatic. This was amazing! “Yeah,” Carrie continued, “I cleaned up this room but didn’t know what to do with all of this stuff. I think we should get rid of the TV.”

Indeed, there was a TV on one of the south-wall shelves. “Not so fast,” I said as I examined it. “Our TV is on its last legs. Maybe we can use this one.”

Carrie picked up some bottles of apple cider (what we’d come up here to get) and I noticed that there was an opening to another hallway in the northwest corner of this living room. “What’s down here?”

“I don’t know,” Carrie said. “I never got that far.”

I promptly headed down the hallway. About five feet down there was an open doorway on the right (to the north). On the other side of the doorway was a small, furnished bedroom with a sunny window. About five feet further down the hall ended at another small, furnished bedroom which took up the entire remainder of the west end of the attic.

“Hey, there are two more bedrooms up here!” I called out to Carrie, who followed me into the hallway. “That makes this a five-bedroom house,” I said with faulty math. It only made the house have four bedrooms, not five.

This west-most bedroom had sliding glass doors on its north wall. They opened onto a small deck, maybe 5′ × 7′. The west railing opened onto a path, which I followed. It wound around the rooftops of the neighborhood houses. The neighborhood suddenly had become like something out of a Miyazaki movie, like Porco Rosso or Kiki’s Delivery Service: old-world European with a lot of flowers and stones and moss.

I totally remember that dream! It was really cool how the world in the dream kept on unfolding and expanding, and the rooftops at the end were truly beautiful in the gentle, warm sunlight. Good job, Dream People!

Categories: Dreams.