Dreamed of 'Scarface'

This morning, I woke up after dreaming I was in the final scene of Brian DePalma's 'Scarface' as one of the rival druglord's henchmen in a violent gunfight with coked-up Tony Montana (played by Al Pacino). The garish interior of Montana's mansion was all around. Fountain in the atrium with a generic statue of women holding a globe with "The World Is Yours" in neon. While stressful, I was able to crawl on the floor and avoid Montana's gunfire even though he saw me.

"Say hello to my little friend! Sweet dreams."

I had been up late watching a documentary about Gore Vidal "The United States of Amnesia", which has tidbits of the fallout he had with Christopher Hitchens. I still mourn the passing of both men, and may write something about that later. Vidal's elegiac sighing over the American Empire likely influenced the dream.

Debris flying, curses in English and Spanish all around, I thought as the dream ended: "This is a tacky way to go."

That would be a pretty good exit line. Something to bear in mind 300-400 years from now when I finally pass.

Inferno, cannibalism, Taylor Swift, public employee pensions

Detail of "Ugoilno and Archbishop Ruggieri" by Gustave Doré (yes, I have this book).

Two recent dreams the same night. I hope they were separate dreams.

1.) Two men laying on the ground, caked in blood, one gnawing off the ear of the other person who lies passive and closes his eyes every few seconds yielding or savoring getting devoured. Reminiscent of (I had the visual but had to look this up) Ugolino perpetually gnawing on the skull of his nemesis Archbishop Ruggieri in Dante's Inferno (XXXII, 128-9).

2.) I duck out of a music show in a dignified theater with my dream-logic friend Taylor Swift. We get to the lobby, after a quick commiseration how BORING that show is, Swift starts peppering me with questions about how the public employee pension system works in California. I explain California is not my state, but I can send some info along. We decide a direct message via Twitter will be the best way to convey those links so she'll see them.

Snort if you want, as if YOU have never had a dream about perpetual cannibalism and chatting economics with Taylor Swift.

(Left) Ugolino snacking on Archbiship Ruggieri, illustration by Barry Moser. (Right) Taylor Swift.

(Left) Ugolino snacking on Archbiship Ruggieri, illustration by Barry Moser. (Right) Taylor Swift.

Saturday Night Live dreams, w/ William Shatner

Dreamed that I was on Saturday Night Live again as a cast member. The dreams are very vivid, with reciting dialog and a variety of sketches, relying on my previous dream-SNL experience (I always reference I'm a veteran, compounding earlier SNL dreams).

Upon waking up, I typically feel the urge to watch the recorded show to see how I did. It takes time to realize, say, this time: 1) It was a dream on Friday night, 2) I was in Oregon all day and not in New York.

I was on Weekend Update trying out some new catch phrases, sketches relying on silly attitudes and some of my dodgy celebrity impressions, but the longest one was a dragged-out end-of-show experimental slop skit that was largely improv and with William Shatner. We were light on the goals of the sketch, knew it was tanking, then were amusing ourselves and if the audience followed along, bully for them.

After the show, Shatner and I got into an argument in a parking lot. Possibly because I made fun of his acting style on air. Then I woke up. These aren't performance-anxiety dreams, as embarrassment or shame don't intrude.

Nightguards, a dental conspiracy?

Keep discovering more people I know who wear these nightguards in their mouths to fend off nocturnal teeth grinding (allegedly). They cost about $800-900 and aren't covered by insurance. Hmm...

Three close friends have them, as revealed the only three times the conversation has come up (100% hit rate!). A colleague who works in the office next to mine ALSO has one. Her dentist told her: "I'd be concerned about your teeth if you were 60 years old, even 70." Which is the same line MY dentist (different from hers) used to scare me into getting one (attained June 2010).

The dentist couldn't tell if the wear & tear happened years ago OR UP TO AND INCLUDING LAST NIGHT! Another dentist in the 90s suggested I get one, so I relented this decade.

Are we really that stressed out? Are we playing into a dental windfall, our mouths a glittering cavern of glistening coins to be mined by the DDS?

Am also left to wonder at the common element: me. Is there something I'm doing that's causing us to collectively clatter and clack into the night with these damnèd things? If so, sorry.

I never had dental-related anxiety dreams before, now every few months I dream of mortifyingly pulling out a ever-replenishing supply of top-row teeth, the row my nightguard is fitted for. Is the subconscious message: "Hey, you're too stressed, maaan." or is it "Get rid of your teeth, they're playing right into THEIR hands!"?

Questions, QUESTIONS! Conspiracies! It's enough to make a person REALLY stressed out!

[Jaw clenches, teeth grind so hard that fragments of enamel ignite into sparks, scalding inner cheeks]

Space, and opera

Last night's dream —

I'm part of a family of four in a small space station we made ourselves. Not my real life family. My role alternates between father and sibling.

The fifth person in our group goes mad, damages the top of our space station that keeps us aloft by tearing a giant seam in the hull. I spot the tear, grip it closed enough with my hands while radioing the other people in the space station that we've been sabotaged, who did it, and that we're slowly descending back to earth.

We land in a desolate area in California. I'm with one family member and we get picked up and transported to San Francisco. The other family/crew members disappear at this point. I'm not sure which family member I'm traveling with.

We check into an elaborate, fancy hotel in San Francisco. Like all fancy hotels, it is adjoined to a fancy shopping mall via an outdoor escalator to the mezzanine level. How fancy is this shopping mall? Why, one of its anchor stores is the San Francisco Metropolitan Opera House!

We go inside the San Francisco Met and attend a massive variety show staged on three sides about a floor above where the audience sits on couches and chaise longues, looking up. Large pageantry, pastel costumes.

I find a remote underneath my seat, press a button, the lights flicker and the whole audience and the performers are all "WTF?" then I hit the button again. Lights return to normal and the performance resumes.

Intermittently I'm trying to text a friend who lives in San Francisco: "Hey, I'm in San Francisco! Let's hang!" but there's a problem with sending a text - a breach of protocol in the opera, for one, although I'm wearing jeans and a t-shirt. Unable to text, I'm trying to check in via Facebook Places to catch the friend's notice and coming to realize that there may not even BE a San Francisco Metropolitan Opera. Frustration sets in. Dream ends.

[UPDATE: San Francisco has city opera, but it is not named the Met]

Action-packed dreams, with tasty eating!

Long periods go by where I wake up and don't recall any dreams. This morning, I recall four. All simple, all influenced by the night before.

Zombie infestation!
The dream took place in an elaborate, delapidated apartment complex. Heavy doors with lever handles. Great for slamming closed JUST IN TIME while looking through the porthole window at the thwarted zombies (they rarely snap their fingers and say "Drat!") or seeing something really terrible happen to someone who might've been me. Can't recall if anyone I know was involved. If you were, sorry. And yes, I will shoot you in the head if you've turned, and expect you'd do the same for me. Okay, 2-3 of you I would strap to a a stretcher and drag around now matter how much you bitched or went "AAARGGHH BRAAAINSS!" in case a scientist somewhere came up with a cure. IF you made that cut and IF you were cured EXPECT you would owe me the biggest goddamned favor of all time. At a minimum, do NOT bitch about how the straps left little crenulations across your chest, arms, and legs.

Woke up a little agitated, heart racing, concerned. Then realized I had a ZOMBIE ADVENTURE dream, affected by watching about 5 minutes of the Dawn of the Dead remake last night, and thought "Ah! Cool." *KONK* Zzzz...

Hanging with a friend.
Sitting down having a mild chat with a distant friend. Don't even recall the topics (I usually don't - will assume My Dinner with André-level scintillating conversation) just the fond relief that at that moment, the geography gap is closed and it seems time and space are within control and easily bent to suit our whims. Am assuming this was triggered by Facebook or Twitter interactions/viewings. This online stuff can be QUITE the neuron-stirrer.

Mediterranean/Lebanese food.
Watched Batman Begins with the kids last night. In it a portly corrupt cop eats a falafel sandwich from a food cart, steals money from the proprietor's tip can, gets hoisted several stories up and above an alleyway and interrogated by gravelly-voiced Batman. First time the kids have seen the movie. Was pleased as it meant a new audience for my impression of Christian Bale's gargle-growl - and I'm getting exact about WHAT in Bale's American accent bugs. L spotted mid-way through the movie that Bale keeps his mouth open - a lot. Not an unfair American characterization by Bale, but still weird-lookin'.

Anyway - watching the fat oily man drop his falafel sammich when yanked upward by his ankle to GROUCHY Batman on the rooftops above I thought: "I want to get Lebanese food tomorrow." In a dream, I did just that. And, using super-powers gained from intensive study of The Secret - I may have visualized this goal enough to have it manifest today!

Disney park.
History/obsession/study of Disney parks merits an entry/confession/plea-for-help here at some point. I have a shelf of books of the history of Walt Disney the man, the corporation, testimonials by employees, but especially about the parks. I have an outline and some text written up for a novel that takes place at Walt Disney World that I may resume after this current writing project is done.

I take charge in a Disney park. The amount of time spent studying the geography and history is extensive. I was in the Magic Kingdom as recently as early April (for half a day - but fun was MAXIMIZED!) as part of a business trip. We're finishing up plans for my spouse's annual conference for her hobby to be extended to a family trip to Disneyland.

The BEST guidebook for the Disney parks is the "Unofficial Guide". Pragmatic detail of each attraction, logistics, dishy, even-handed and well-timed "Do these things in this order" plans of attack, with variations depending on the group you're with, that are awesome and minimize waits in line. I was reading the 2011 edition for Disneyland before falling asleep. In the dream, navigating around Disneyland (solo? with family? with friends? - can't recall in the way Rain Man might not be top-of-mind cognizant of the people he's with) and having fun.

In general, my dreams tend to be simple, with easy-to-identify sources of inspiration. That's good, right?