The dream last night was of the “I’m on the run from someone sinister” variety. Or, sometimes, the “on the run” dream will simply consist of me getting fed up with it all, and running away. I think it’s an archetype that’s been with me since childhood or before. Maybe it’s with everyone, this sense of needing to run away from everything and just be a bum of no account.
In this particular dream, though, I had apparently been kidnapped by a wealthy notable at the age of fourteen, which was around ten years ago in the dream. The notable is someone I won’t mention, since in the dream I killed him. So, anyway, I had finally decided that I was all fed up with being sexually abused by this individual, and one night discovered that he’d left a gun laying around in his garage. Some random guy out of the blue told me that the gun required “54 gauge ammunition” and lo and behold, there happened to be some of these bullets lying around. This was the second dream as of late where I’d grabbed a gun and was prepared to use it, and it felt good holding the gun in my hand in the dream.
In a previous dream, I’d suddenly found myself training to be a police officer with my friend S from high school and college and our instructor was our drunk old gym/driver’s ed teacher from high school. The gun in that dream was some kind of automatic pistol that had the faces and names of celebrities on it who preferred this brand of weapon. I kept trying to find a suitable place to practice discharging the weapon, but there were people everywhere. Finally, finding an area with a target, I saw that my friend S was practicing his bow and arrow shooting. I asked if it was a target practice for “bow and arrow only” and he said yes. Then, the gun kept having additional safety locks added to it even as I hoped to still be able to shoot it.
In my dream last night, I successfully discharged the weapon and killed my tormentor who was running for political office. I soon discovered that there was a camera in the room and hoped that I had been far enough out of the camera’s range when I shot him. I immediately sauntered into the room following his death acting as if I hadn’t just witnessed the shooting so that it would look like on camera that I was innocent. When I began to realize that people watching the video were finding it hard to believe I could have gotten into the room so fast after the shooting without having witnessed it, I decided to go on the run.
The next sequence of the dream saw me hiding out in this weird public shelter for homeless people and stealing any toiletries and clothing they left behind. The shelter was like the bathroom at a campground–you came and went as you pleased and locked the door behind you to sleep on a tiny bench that was barely small enough to sit on. I’d taken the sleeping area of a lady who’d already arrived, but she didn’t seem too mad at me when I apologized and found somewhere else to sleep.
I kept changing my disguises and wandering through areas near where I’d escaped. However, I continued to withdraw cash at ATMs, and didn’t realize for a long time that I could be tracked this way. Along the way, I passed surgeons performing emergency surgery on people in an open-air hospital, and a school that intensely prided itself on making all kinds of crafts for kids. L from mce worked there as a teacher and didn’t recognize me at first. In the dream, my real name was John, but I had been using the name Ghan as a pseudonym. I asked her if she recognized who I really was, and she mouthed the name Jesus, as in the Hispanic version of the name. I proceeded to try to get away, but lost my sense of direction. Somehow, I had started in California, but was trying to cross the Missouri River to get to Missouri. I picked up friends along the way who wanted me to escape.
The interesting thing here is the appearance of guns in dreams almost two days in a row. In both dreams, I felt very good about the idea of shooting a gun, and in the second one was happy to have a somewhat legitimate reason to kill a person with a gun. I don’t know if this is my subconscious reacting to my decision to all but leave my “less worldly” calling and return to a more secular career. I do know that I kind of drooled yesterday when I saw a Ducati motorcycle parked in front of the wing restaurant we ate at, and all of the old desires to have a motorcycle came back.
We decided to do something all-American this weekend, and eating extremely hot wings while drinking an oversize frosty mug of beer and then bowling seemed like the right thing to do. I was glad we did it, though this morning I have been less-than-excited over my choice to order the spiciest wings on the menu last night and sweat it out eating them. I had to sweat it out again today.
My son was pretty thrilled about going bowling for the first time, though he could often not quite get the lightest ball they had to go down the lane all of the way. I don’t know if the fellow who had to run out on the lane and retrieve his ball eight times was happy about that or not, but who cares? That’s what they were paying him to do.
I am trying to think about what makes returning to the old work so appealing for me, but I think that the conversation I had with the last guy who interviewed me sums it up pretty well: at it’s best, there is no bullshit about trying to generate more business for a company. At it’s worst, it’s just as much bullshit as anything else. I guess the same thing could be said for religion and spirituality, but the problem here among a lot of these folks is that they seem constantly concerned and worried that they are not virtuous enough in the politically correct, social justice sense of being virtuous. If they aren’t awake enough to intersectionality, others’ triggers and need for safe spaces, and everything that comes with it, then they are terrified that their white privilege will shine through and they will be exposed as being hypocrites and frauds.
All of that stuff is part of being in your twenties and not yet accepting who you are is who you will inevitably be. You might get to go on a few more heavily-sponsored mission trips that marginally help others on the other side of the world. Maybe you will get to be the pastor of the downtown church that opens its doors once a week so the homeless can have a breakfast. But, at the end of your striving to be the most perfectly virtuous crusader of social justice, you will probably not be that different of a pastor from your fathers and grandfathers.
So, I guess the point I’m trying to make is that most of the folks I’ve been sitting with in these classes are still trying to get out from under all of the bullshit and posturing that comes from being a young adult at the start of your career when you still think that you alone of all people will go on to become the greatest person who ever lived and show everyone else the dust of your sandals as they are left far behind in their mediocre jobs and lives.
To be for sure, the corporate world is chock full of bullshit as well. The people who get especially ra ra and gung ho about their company when you know they’ve been at three other companies more or less like it in the past three years and have left after becoming disillusioned by the management and the product and the clients. The ones who actually believe that they are changing the world and saving lives by selling software to other businesspeople. The ones who are so full of themselves that they can’t be bothered to talk to you half the time.
Up late for me, walking the dog at 7:30 AM…can’t help but notice what I’ve noticed before–nobody is ever out early in the morning unless they have to be. For all the people who declare “I’m not a morning person” as if that were something rare–it would seem that almost the entire world is not a morning person.