dream mares and night scapes
Working in a tri-level mall department store. My sister is there, still a little girl in a black Sunday dress with a purple knitted afghan/shawl. Sometimes she is a black pillow with a purple knitted afghan cover. This is good, because she is not supposed to be here, and I am trying to sneak her out before my manager- a guy who used to be my manager at Ulrich’s Bookstore in downtown Ann Arbor- gives me an earful for slacking off. Becca, a girl I used to work with at Wendy’s (my first job, so long ago I don’t even want to think about it) is helping me. We are running all around, dodging the manager and trying to find my parents to drop Sarah with them before we get busted.
Later I find a cat named Mr. Tibbles (apparently there are several felines with this appellation, of varying levels of fame, although whether this was one of those, I couldn’t say) and return him to his owner. He hesitates on the doorstep, and I encourage him by saying “Go to him, Tibbles.” I have no idea the provenance of this phrase, but it seemed poignant at the time.
No idea what that means. It sounds improper; thought I don’t think it actually was.
K. and I are the American Olympic Roofskiing team. This sport is a combination of cross country, downhill, and freestyle stunt skiing, which involves traversing the rooftops of a city on skis. Needless to say, it is hella dangerous and exhausting. It involves a fair amount of climbing and navigation as well as actual skiing. We are neck and neck with several other teams, probably in the early stages of the race, helping one another up chimneys and shingles to find a good summit to work up downhill speed from.
Zombie [something] tree
family ants [I hope it says “ants”, cuz otherwise it says “cunts” and I don’t even want to think about that in context]
Oh, right, I vaguely remember that we could “time travel” into the future by sealing ourselves in tupperware-like containers and hibernating for decades. I wish I’d translated these when I still remembered what they meant…
An Obama impostor was convincing congresspersons to join him in a naked run into the surf as some kind of consensus building exercise. As he and one senator were getting on their marks in preparation for a mad dash into the sea, the man looked over and said, very seriously, “You know there’s a good chance I still won’t support this bill.”
At a costume party at an ancient Chinese castle, all dressed as courtiers and such. It’s a swingy sort of engagement, but the woman I’ve come with has made me promise that we’re not engaging in any of that, and I’ve agreed. Later, after snacks and drinks and conversation, I’ve lost track of her. Then she catches my eye from across the room, she’s holding another man in a rather intimate way, and the look she gives me is clearly a request for permission. I nod and smile, my blessings.
I wander away from the party, into an older part of the castle. I find a museum-like room with several displays of items and garb from the castle’s history. To one side is a small, dinner plate sized gong hanging on a wooden frame. Picking up the hammer, I ring it a few times, enjoying the way the sound echoes through the halls. I am amused, and wonder if it will summon a servant, who might bring me wine, food, or even a companion. To my surprise, a servant does arrive, arrayed in period costume like the partygoers. He explains that this gong is rung only to request an audience with the lord of the castle. I am very apologetic, but he says that now the lord will be expecting me, and leads me into an antechamber to await his summons.
Through the thin, decorated rice paper wall, I can overhear the lord speaking harshly with another man. It turns out this man is the chief accountant for the castle, and he has committed a serious crime. One of the servants had died several months ago, and the accountant, instead of reporting his death and transferring his salary to the servant’s family to ensure their needs are met, he has left the dead man on the payroll and pocketed the extra money. The accountant denies all the charges and argues vociferously for his innocence. The lord is both very angry and very disappointed, as the accountant’s family has served his for generations and has been honorable and trustworthy until now.
I suddenly have an idea, and return to the room with the historical displays. I deck myself out as a jiang shi (a Chinese ghost or zombie), with servant’s hat (the wide chin-straps left flapping at the sides of my head like small wings) and torn prayer-scroll over my face. I then walk stiffly into the presence chamber, moaning, arms outstretched toward the accountant, and proclaim in a sepulchral voice “You betrayed me! You stole my family’s money! Tell the truth or you will join me!” as I move toward him. He goes completely pale and tries to stammer a denial. My fingers close around his throat and I shake him. “The truth! THE TRUUUTH!” I moan. He shrieks and admits everything in a spill of words, and then faints dead away.
The lord, decked out in the ceremonial robes of his office, eyes me for a moment. “You are not a ghost.” he says, matter-of-factly. I admit that I am not, and explain everything to him. He laughs and says I have done him a service. He tosses me a small gold coin, a square centerhole stamped out of it, and says I should return to my party before I am missed. I thank him and make my way back, replacing the items in their displays before I go.
Back at the party, everyone wonders where I went, so I tell them the story of how I accidentally met the lord of the castle and helped him with a problem. The man who organized the party listens, then gives me a quizzical look. “Either you have a fantastic imagination, or you’re so drunk you’re hallucinating.” he says. “This castle hasn’t had a lord in over 800 years.”