I don’t often remember what I dream about. Last night was an exception. Some have told me that taking melatonin inspires their subconscious to manufacture vivid dreams, often of a nightmarish bent; I, on the other hand, normally take melatonin, but last night did not, offering yet another possible example of my paradoxical processing of chemicals (for example, Benadryl, a reliable sleep aid for some, only makes me agitated).
In this dream I was attending college somewhere, at least initially. I was having a conversation with someone in the student commons when it occurred to me that I had not been to math class (a basic arithmetic course, I believe) in well over a month and had probably missed a few quizzes and tests. So I headed for the math building and discovered that the classroom was filled with faces from my high-school years. Unfazed by this apparent academic regression, I sought out the professor/teacher but she was nowhere to be seen. At this point a cafeteria aide wearing a colorful hairnet stuck her head in the door and announced that our lunch trays had arrived (it seemed perfectly natural to have our food delivered to class a la Jeff Spiccoli rather than have it served it in the cafeteria, wherever it was). For whatever reason I had been denied a tray, so the cafeteria worker promised to bring me not one but two tuna-fish sandwiches owing to the delay in service.
I took the opportunity to strike up a conversation with the girl seated behind me. I know that she was someone who was indeed in my graduating class at Concord High School, but I forget her identity now. I cast forth a number of crass and caustic jokes that weren’t funny but made the girl laugh anyway (this was as close as the dream got to representing my real-life experiences). I was so caught up in our raconteuring that I did not notice when my food tray arrived and was promptly appropriated by a girl at a desk a few rows away. By the time I caught on, the girl (also a representation of a real-life classmate and whose name I also forget) was placidly chewing away at one of my tuna-fish sandwiches, a beatific look on her slackly masticating face. “What the hell!” I thought — and perhaps yelled — and bolted over to reclaim the remainder of my meal, which I promptly gave to the girl behind me although I do not believe I was flirting with her.
At this point, the math professor/teacher materialzed behind me and began speaking over my shoulder. “You’ve missed a number of classes, Mr. Beck,” she said flatly. I turned around. The professor/teacher, who looked suspiciously like Jeanne Kirkpatrick, was holding open her grading book and pointing to a series of zeroes associated with my name. “You’ve ruined what may have been a good grade.” Only mildly flustered, I said, “I’ll make it up,” then grabbed my now-empty lunch tray. The girl who’d stolen one of my sandwiches was making for the door with a smirk on her face, and I believe she was receiving a number of compliments from the other students regarding her blatant shenanigans. Angry now, I picked up the tray and slung it in her direction like a frisbee, having every intention of beheading her with the dull edge of damned thing before she could disappear into the hallway, but it was like trying to hurl a loosely wadded napkin — it merely fell at my feet. Then I finally woke up.
I cannot account for this dream, although shortly before hitting the sack last night I did engage in a rather “heated” instant-message session. If I can string a few more of these dreams together and remember the gist of them I may be able to produce something akin to a Farrelly brothers screenplay adapted from a Jonathan Ames novel. I’ll pray to Morpheus it happens.