“Say you’re sorry, that face of an angel comes out just when you need it to.” – TS

How come the only things I really want are categorically impossible to get? Is it because that is the point of Dreams — not to achieve them, but as a goad to get us up off the couch? So that we at least do something? Anything? Something slightly better than nodding through this one shot at life, supposedly safe in our protective cocoons?

How to dream again and not get crushed by waking up when it’s over? Do I have another one in me? Witt told me, even back then, that I needed a new dream, and I was like, “Oh hell no. I’m done with that shit. It’s just grim, prosaic life for me from here on out.” Well, ends up that wasn’t going so great. Not sure it has to be a binary choice — dreaming or sleepwalking — and not sure this reawakening feeling isn’t just the momentary fantasy before the next magnet snaps together, snapping me stuck in between them, again. I might be buying today’s optimism with procrastination, which means when the bill comes due tomorrow, it’s gonna be steep. Maybe?

Questions… so many questions. Oh boy, do I have questions.


Oh, here: this feels like a new thought: maybe I never actually killed The Dream. Maybe I just buried it alive and tried to grieve it as if I had? That bit at the end of my published version, the SFW version, where I said something like ‘life without it [the Dream] isn’t so bad’ — ? “Isn’t so bad”? What’s that, a euphemism for “hopelessness gets a bad rap; you should try it”? Fuck me.

Now, a decade out from my dream time, and a few more years logged in “isn’t so bad” territory (and, thanks to the neurochemical enhancement, maybe slightly more awake than I’ve been in a while), life without hope seems like a fate worse than death or shattered dreams. Like, if I was never gonna dare to fly at the sun again, I should have just wandered out in the deep snow while I had the chance.

[Sorry for that one. It’s what I wrote on Saturday, and it still feels too true to cut, although the timing and context are now abyssmal. I guess I can say that I’m not making a joke about suicide here; I’m referring to the time when I got closest to the real thing. And not that I was that close — I wasn’t. But I could see it from there, and it scared the hell out of me. Three months without sleep in the dead of winter is not a recipe for a reasonable perspective on the world and one’s place in it. I can’t recommend it.]

Huh. I know I shouldn’t be saying any of this, and yet — it’s pretty much the only thing I want to say. That and the lame references. Oh, and the song lyrics… Lucifer’s Hammer am I loving music lately. “We’ll dance around the kitchen in the refrigerator light” is a long, long, long way from “If you need me, I’ll be out in the deep snow.” A long way.


And so it’s as if that first Dream rotted and zombified, and went lurching off into some horror movie that I can’t bear to watch. A consequence of my unholy act or original artistic sin — failing to give it it’s due. I mean, I tried to, but I got scared. I got tired. I saw a softer landing spot and just thought I could rest up a bit before restarting the climb. And then I just quit climbing. And not even to say that that was the wrong choice; everything considered — the sorry list of ills and misfortune that I cataloged in that Killing The Dream essay — still seems like plenty of reason to back off and think about either a different target or a different approach to hitting it.

That undead dream probably can’t be unearthed and revived; even if I wanted to. ‘Exhumed’, to borrow the great R.E.M. word. [Single quotes again. I know I shouldn’t.]

I think the pagans would say you have to perform some rituals now, to get out from under that past. Special plants cut at midnight, under a harvest moon like the one out the kitchen window last night. (Why do I stay inside? Sometimes, it feels like freedom to just stand out under the dark.) Maybe that’s the thrust of this whole pseudo-Goddess/Muse/OA thing. Appealing to some mystical power that can erase what time and math and money have wrought.

If I do exhume it, or sanctify or put it to rest; if I did; would it make room for a second Dream? Another spin of the big wheel? So many questions. And if so… if it did, would it be worth the nearly unfaceable costs to pursue it?

Because, see, I already know what that dream would be, deep in my sneaky little heart; and of course, like a character wishing for extra wishes in a badly run D&D campaign [not helping yourself with these outdated nerd references, Scott], the new dream would somehow try to quietly wrap the best parts of the old one into itself. Like: I could get used to not actually working.


So the big one is coming up. I might be subconsciously racing towards Oblivion so I can get it here faster. The pressure to spill is building; I foolishly think I can lead you to it, bit by bit, Iike dragging my stubborn mules to town, one inch at a time, so they don’t quite flash onto the fact that we’re on the move. {Please clarify: is that ‘bit’ as in ‘bit and bridle’ or bit as in ‘pieces of eight’ or bit as in ‘1/8th of a byte’? -Ed.} [S T O P !].

:: so that when we get there, you’re ready for it, and won’t crucify me for my excessive honesty :: i don’t want to be your martyr ::

Whatever ends up happening with that — the how — I’ve already decided that the what is going to be +99. Because that’s a real magic number. That’s how my blue-painted ancestors would have done. Not +100. One hundred is as magical as the imperialist White King’s boiled roast beef. Drained of life, propped up on a throne encrusted with our stolen jewels, as arrogant in his certainty as the weakest among us. Ninety-nine is where it’s at. Or, I should say, where it will be. So if you want, you can skip out the rest of this slowly bending dramatic arc and just jump ahead to the grand finale.

Sixteen to go. (You missed six!) I’m scared, but I think I can get there. Better offload some more casual readers before then. Let’s see… Are there swear words I haven’t used yet? Topics so banal and grim that even Witt or K in A might turn and look away? (Not that I want them to; I just mean, bad enough that practically everyone else will.) Maybe I should abandon this ‘hiding in plain sight’ nonsense — duh, Google — and think about converting it to a subscription-only TinyLetter or something, instead. Like, before 99. Yeah, maybe. But you know I won’t.

Damn. I’m doing that thing again where I’m writing checks now that my dumb ass might not be able to cash later. I should qualify all that, as I hear tell that I am quite unreliable these days. Even on 5mg. So OK, my plan is to build up to +99. I hope to. I aim to. YMMV. “And it came to me then, that every plan, is a tiny prayer to Father Time.”

All of this could very well come collapsing down under its own weight well before we ever reach such a lofty total.

“If my FILDI is weak, let me”… Eat my critique? I forget. “But if my FILDI is strong, let me…” I dunno. I forget. Oh, Ze… Where the fuck did you go, man? I need you — maybe now more than ever. I hope you’re happy, wherever you are.

If my FILDI is strong, maybe it will let me face down the armored bear — grasp his hot-fanged jaws between my hands, moments before they find my throat, and leap onto his back, like a Minoan bull rider. Then, off we’ll charge, to kill the enemy and redeem this overly-long, sad, silly story.

Maybe I’ll even let that face rearrange my stars. Maybe by different starlight I could find another dream worth having.

“And it’s too late for you and your white horse, to catch me now.”