2/17/2008
French fries and ice cream

You are in an elegantly-decorated church. Despite the wedding going on, you walk closer and closer to the altar, not mindful of the guests, of the priest, of the to-be-married couple, and of proper decorum.

You look around you, and you see the white walls are adorned with white cloth. It looks like a tent, but well, if that's what the couple wants, that's what the couple gets. It's possibly their biggest, and most important, night yet.

You turn your attention to the priest, as he speaks. What he says escapes you, but you know what's coming next.

"I do," you hear the man say. He turns to his bride, and you realize that it is you.

The priest starts speaking again, and as you try to recall what usually happens next, the woman turns to her groom and answers, "I do." And as she turns, you realize that it is her.

In the middle of it all, you wake up.

Funny thinking that dreams can be like this. No, this isn't my dream - but then again, like everybody else, I'm bound to forget what really happened - but has anyone ever thought that their dreams are actually real? That, for the eight hours or so that you spend deeply preparing for the day ahead, you're living out another life - an inescapable one in which what you never thought possible happened? I can't say one would volunteer such ambitions, but you'll never really know what you really, really want.

I remember an old conversation, obviously way back, but not that far. I think it was Issa on the other end of the connection, and we were talking about how one could force himself to dream about another. If I remember correctly, the figure she gave was twenty minutes - that long thinking about one person, and then when you sleep, it will manifest in your other reality. It didn't work for me, really, because I dreamt of something entirely different.

But when you dream - when you're least unconscious, if I remember my psychology lessons correctly - you're somehow whisked into that other reality. You see things unfold right in front of you, in what probably is the best way of involving a supposedly passive viewer - get him in the game itself. Although I see things as if I was watching off a bad television signal, with muted colors and substandard audio, I'm still there, thinking as if I'm actually awake, as outrageous as these circumstances may be, trying to run away from criminals out to kidnap my beloved.

And, more often than not, dreams are the only ways you can be with the things you can't have. But of course I'm stating the obvious.

Of course, I'm guilty of drifting away from the troposphere once in a while, thinking about scenarios I feverishly wish would come true. Sure, I still subscribe to outrage once in a while, but if you haven't a choice, you end up doing it anyway. It may not be as extravagant as what is usually thought of - blame that on the need to be practical - but it's essentially the same: promises are kept, plans are made, and the future seems more secure than ever. You end up thinking of the present, and secretly trace the path to get there. You'll stand up for what you believe in. You'll remove all inhibitions. You'll go up to her and say what you really feel. You'll hope for the best.

And then it happens. Reality strikes back.

You realize that it isn't as easy as it seems. There's always the antagonist, the other people, your friends and her friends, or his friends for that matter. There's always that bitch called circumstance, that one thing that will always make you consider things again. There's always you, and what you feel, and what you think you should feel, and what you think is right. You're mindful again of the guests, of the priests, of the couple, and of proper decorum. It's no longer a dream.

Maybe I was led here by something as simple as playful friendliness, which means I have every reason to doubt whether thinking about it for twenty minutes before I sleep is even worth it. But you're you, and you know if the feeling is undeniable, and if you should act on it or not. I remember Denise telling me that, well, people could be helping me out, and I think so, too. Only problem is, there's always something getting in the way, and you doubt your abilities to get past it, to get what you think is deservingly yours. Maybe that's why you badly want to sleep.

Way back, Clarence reminded me of a song lyric. "A dream is a wish your heart makes," she said. Sure, I thought, and forgot about it. Maybe this works now, while I eat my French fries dipped in an ice cream sundae, until that soothing feeling wraps around me. I have yet to try it, to be honest, but maybe I should. Comfort food, comforting thoughts, and the opposite reality.

And your responses...

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