The main source of inspiration for this writing binge is a typewriter I bought in Lake George when I went on vacation Labor Day weekend. It’s a Royal Caravan typewriter from the 60s or 70s. There were cool, extremely old ones as well, but many of them had keys that would get stuck. Only the comma key on mine gets stuck occasionally, which isn’t the worst thing in the world. I am more conscientious of sentence structure because of it.
Just about all of these stories were written with the typewriter first. I’ll post pictures so you can see how amazing it works.
Anyways, this is a quick one page story about a dream I had a little while ago. I get recurring dreams/nightmares of animals roaming around my property in New Paltz. If you’re good at interpreting dreams — I’m going back and forth debating whether or not I actually want to know — tell me what they mean. I keep note of the really weird ones.
I’ve just come across a possible dilemma: how do you classify a dream? Is it fiction or nonfiction? The dream actually happened, but what happened in the dream didn’t actually happen in real life, right? Or because the dream once existed, I have to treat it with the same respect as real life? You can find this story classified under fiction and nonfiction for now…
It felt like I was walking into my house; everything felt familiar and everything looked familiar, but everything was wrong. There was a sun room in place of the caving-in, cement back porch. The scratched wooden floor was replaced with dirty white tiles. There was a swing set in the backyard for the first time in years, but it wasn’t the old one where the wrens would nest in the metal frame. No pond; no TV; no kitchen; no familiar faces. I had nothing and felt at home.
I never saw a creature bigger than the deer in my woods, which no longer existed; however, it came as no surprise to me when I saw a brown bear trying to break into the house. It had big, lighter-brown spots all over its body. Everything still felt normal; I wasn’t afraid, but the faces I never saw before were throwing me off. It should have been the first indication that it was only a dream. I thought I was supposed to know everyone lucky enough to make it into my dreams. Was Freud wrong? Probably. Did he even mention this? Probably not. But it does sound like something he would conclude, right? Who knows. I had never seen a bear in real life either. The power of photographs and videos is humbling. My mind’s ability to recreate a recreation so accurately is frightening.
So how did my mind mess up the first place I ever fell in love with? Why? Because my family is going to sell the house? How does it explain the tiger in the cage with another unfamiliar face? Am I the tiger? Who is that next to me, and why haven’t I devoured them yet? That must make me the unfamiliar faces. Why do I sit so calmly next to the beast? I had to take a picture, even though I wasn’t proving anything to anyone. After all, nothing was out of the ordinary.
Maybe the unfamiliar is the ordinary. Maybe Freud was right about the uncanny. My mind was telling me it’s okay that things change. I can still love the unfamiliar because the familiar is all I see after Time is finished with it. Each memory is its own universe. Does NASA know we can already travel through time and manipulate space with our minds?
DISCLAIMER: You will find typos. It is so hard going from a computer, and having the luxury to backspace, to this. PLEASE forgive me; tell me I’m being too hard on myself.