Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Respite Despite the Dreaming

"The Dream" by Edouard Detaille. Sol..."The Dream" by Edouard Detaille. Soldiers dreaming about glory. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

        It's A to Z Challenge Reflections week in case anyone is not yet aware.  If you have anything to say about the April Challenge, put up your post before Saturday night and then add the link to that post on the list which can be found at the A to Z Blog.   We want to know what you think about the Challenge.  Since my focus is on the A to Z Reflections posts this week, my entry here today will be themed as such.

        My sleep dreams have been relegated to the back of my mind of late.  With the Challenge and the Reflections and all of the related catching up with things, I have dreamed during sleep.  I remember the dreams--sometimes vividly.  Then I stop thinking of them and busy myself with other things until the dreams are completely forgotten.  It's been like this for a month and a half now.  I've been too busy to bother with dreams--waking or sleeping.

        What I have noticed about what I do remember about my dreams is that they mostly were related to blogging.  A few times I even awoke from dreams about blogging to go to my computer and check my blog--to see if my daily offering had posted yet, to check if I had gotten any new comments, or to begin another blog post that I had thought of while dreaming.

          Have you ever been so focused on something that you thought about it when you were awake and asleep?   Do you often dream about work or things you are responsible for getting done?    How often are your dreams pure escapism?

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  1. Escapism means enjoyable to me...I rarely (if ever) have a fun dream. Usually my dreams are violent, active and loaded with symbolism.

  2. The escapism dreams are more fun, but I do often dream about work related things, such as book reviews or dreams related to my library job. I don't remember having any about blogging yet, but that could change.

    Speaking of dreams, I had a weird one this morning:

    You and FarAwayEyes
    were in it. We were all in the same room - my personal library, apparently – and I was attempting to talk both of you into collaborating with me on separate writing projects.

    So, in the dream, I’m carrying on conversations with both of you intermittently, and at one point FarAwayEyes (FAE) happened to mention the name of some famous old character actor (not a real person, but an old actor known to all of us in the dream).

    At that point, you say, “I was married to him once, for about five minutes.” So, of course, FAE and I both want to know what the hell you’re talking about. You relate this funny anecdote that went something like this:

    You were once standing just outside the door of a restaurant when the old character actor walked out, having just dined there. The actor saw someone approaching him whom he wanted desperately to avoid as much as possible.

    So the famous actor sort of pulls you over to him and asks you to please just play along with him for a moment. The stranger approaches the actor and invites him to accompany him somewhere, but the actor responds that he can’t because he and you, Lee, are married, and the two of you were just on your way to the theatre. And this gets rid of the pestering stranger.

    FAE and I both laugh about this, and then I go back to trying to talk you and FAE into working with me on different writing projects.

    While I’m talking to FAE, telling her that I have several good ideas “to bring to the table”, and that I’m certain she has some good ideas too, I’m going around sticking blank yellow Post-it notes on some of the books I own. These are presumably books I intend to quote from or reference, should FAE decide to work with me on this writing project (whatever it is).

    OK, McBuddy, I am seriously strapped for time and have a ton of things to do today before I leave for work, but I will try to check in again after work today (er... like 1 AM tomorrow) to see if you have deciphered this dream for me.

    If you tell me that you’re secretly gay and were once married to a famous actor, I swear I’ll eat a bullfrog and then I’ll die.

    [Hmmm... I know that “bullfrog” line from my childhood. I thought it was from a children’s song, but a Google search turned up nothing on that phrase. You ever heard that before? My maternal Grandpa used to say that. Where’d he get that from?]

    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

  4. I know my dreams are weird due to medication so I rather not know what the mean.


  5. Delores -- Hmmm...maybe you need to study those dreams and figure out where the violence comes from. I think I'll write about dream violence sometime soon.

    Cherie -- Probably if you start thinking a whole lot about blogging like I have been, you'll start dreaming about it. I think the intensity of our daily lives is what colors our dreams most.

    StMc -- I think Obama might have had something to do with this dream. I'll get to directly on this one.

    Yvonne -- I suppose the medications I take could have some influence on my dreaming as well.


  6. I dreamed quite often as a child, and now, hardly ever. Maybe I do, but can't remember them. I think I dream to resolve problems, which, I suppose, is good in the long run!

  7. I've certainly dreamt of things that arrested my attention at some point in my day. However, in the fickle way the mind has of messing with you, if I *deliberately* think of a thing in the hopes of dreaming about it, I won't. Wah.

    Some Dark Romantic

  8. Yes, at times my concentration on a subject, or topic, or activity is so sharp that I might dream of it for days consecutively. Once, during a period I was studying poetry and, especially, the technical aspects of it, metric scansion, etc., I dreamed of an entire poem written on a board. I woke up in the middle of the night and wrote it down before I forgot it. Then, when I analyzed it, I realized it was not technically a poem, but in the dream I was convinced it was.

  9. Oh yeah, my brain is always focused on my work as a full-time writer. I'm surprised I'm not more crazy than I already am.

    Precious Monsters

  10. Jarm -- You do dream. It would be highly unlikely that you didn't since dreams are an essential part of our mental health. Problem solving in dreams is common and its a useful function of dreaming.

    Mina -- I have that same problem. I have not been able to will my dream topic nor have I done well at lucid dreaming.

    Jay - It's funny how that works. Dreaming is usually such a delusional activity. I've had times when I've awakened during a dream cycle convinced that I had something of genius to write down and then the next day when I look it either makes no sense or it's just something rather mundane carrying none of the impact it had in the dream.

    Jolie -- I think I'm getting worse and a lengthy fixation like A to Z doesn't help matters that much.


  11. Part 1 Of 2:


    >> . . . What it means I'm not sure.
    Let me know if you come up with a reasonable interpretation.

    This is in response to your Email:

    Upon further reflection yesterday and this morning, believe it or not, I think I’ve figured this dream out entirely. There is no actual “interpretation” because it’s an example of what I’ve termed “Night Doodles”, where the sleeper’s mind takes disparate threads from it’s waking life and weaves them together to create a new story.

    Here’s where all the elements of this story came from...

    In the not too distant past, FarAwayEyes and I discussed (and might actually do it, if I can ever find enough free time) collaborating on a completely improvised story in conjunction with a chess game we play against each other. That is, she would make a move on the chess board and write several sentences for the story. Then I make my move and add several more sentences to the story. The story builds upon itself while the chess game continues, but then it comes to an abrupt end when one of us checkmates the other.

    Why I was also attempting to talk you into collaborating with me on another story I have no idea. Just incidental, I think.

    The yellow Post-it notes aspect of the dream I’d actually figured out right away. About 3 weeks ago, I transferred a bunch of DVDs from one room to another, and put them in my BOOKCASES (the "library" symbol in my dream). Some of them were full seasons of TV shows (‘All In The Family’, ‘Get Smart’, ‘Everybody Loves Raymond’) that I was working my way through, so I took the ones I was currently in the middle of and stuck blank yellow Post-it notes on them before putting them in the bookcase, to remind me where to pick it up from when I have time to start watching them again.

    In some recent F-FFF blog bits related to taste-testing various brands of beer, I have been posting my observations under a category I’ve titled “Post-Test Post-it Note:” So, those two details in my real life related to Post-it notes sneaked into my dream.

    After leaving my comment on your blog yesterday, I began saying over and over again (only because I find it very funny somehow) “On to the theater!” which I thought of because the gay actor in my dream said that’s where he and you were going next.

    Then suddenly it hit me! Just last weekend, my Brother and I watched Disney’s animated classic ‘Pinocchio’, which I love. And there’s one scene where ‘Honest John’ persuades the naïve Pinocchio to skip school and become an actor instead. Honest John says, “Come. On to the theater!”

    The theater theme also ties in with all three of us – you, FarAwayEyes, and me. FarAwayEyes and I are both former thespians (stars of stage and screen - perhaps you’ve heard of us?) and you, of course, were also an entertainer who has performed on countless stages. Ah-Ha! It all makes sense, and now we know why we three were the ‘principal players’ in this dream theater.

    But where’d the “gay marriage” bit come in? I didn’t know, but I DID KNOW FOR SURE that it had nothing to do with Obama’s (ho-hum) announcement the other day. That made no impression on my mind whatsoever because it was neither surprising or shocking. I’ve always known that Obama really supports gay marriage but it was politically expedient for him not to admit it.

    But now that he realizes he had better capture the gay lobby vote because this next election is going to be really close (and in fact, I still say he’s going to be a one-term president), he has come out publicly in favor of gay marriage. I always knew he was lying about it in the past, so this was a yawner that couldn’t possibly impact my dreams.

    Continued Below...

  12. Part 2 Of 2:

    BUT...less than an hour ago, I figured out where the “gay marriage” thing came from. I went back and watched that one scene with Pinocchio and Honest John, and I realized that immediately after Honest John says “On to the theater!” he begins singing the song ‘Hi-Diddle-De-Dee, An Actor’s Life For Me’, which happens to include this lyric: “ actor’s life is gay”. And then I remembered that when I watched this movie last weekend, I laughed to myself at that point in the song.

    Every symbol in this dream makes sense, but not as a whole, only as disparate threads woven together from things that have been going on in my life recently.

    I agree with you, the most interesting aspect of the dream is the fact that a character (you) carried into it with him a recollection of an event in his personal history or past, as if he had a life before the dream began. I too have always found that fascinating about dreams.

    Another interesting thing, which I didn’t mention in my original comment, is that when you told FAE and me the story of that encounter with the gay actor from “years ago” (before my dream existed), I wasn’t listening to you talk and watching yours lips move while you related it to us. At the moment your story started, the dream shifted and I no longer seemed to be in the room with you and FAE, but I was now seeing the event unfold as if I were actually there, or watching a movie of it.

    I saw you standing outside the restaurant door, saw the gay actor come out (he looked like a slightly slimmer version of Burl Ives – a classic “character actor” look), saw the other man (stranger) approach the actor, listened to all the dialogue as it unfolded between the actor, you and the stranger.

    And then the second you were finished telling the story – CUT! – EDIT! – I’m immediately back in the library again, and FAE and I are both laughing at what you’ve just told us.

    You gotta LOVE dreams, eh?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    ‘Loyal American Underground’

  13. I'll bet you were dreaming of blogging! When I was in a bowling league, I'd dream about bowling all night following bowling night.

    I get a lot from dreams. Some are just dreams that "process", sorting through pieces of the day, or past few days. But some are truely symbolic, imparting information. I truely believe in the intuitive power of dreams, have worked with dream therapy for a large part of my life.

    Great post!

  14. StMc -- Great unraveling of the mysteries. Just goes to show that you know you better than I do. This actually sounds like a classic dream in the style that I would dream. I enjoy it when something is being told and the I the dreamer start seeing it or experiencing it almost as though it were a movie. Good job interpreting.

    Trisha--You're right. I think most frequently dreams are study of life prior to the dream and an apprehension of things we are thinking about. But I also think that dreams are the other things you said as well.


  15. Usually, I don't remember my dreams, Lee. If I do it normally is just a piece of a picture as I'm waking up.

    I know that I do dream all the time and wish that I did remember so that I could keep a journal!

    I pay attention to the pieces I do remember since it is so vivid; however understanding the meaning is what is needed.

    The other day as I a wakened from my sleep - I could hear a voice as clearly as if I was awake say: Shirley passed away this morning.

    I have a sister and a niece which is my sisters daughter both named,Shirley.

    So , I was some what alarmed. Everything turned out to be alright with them;I was pleased about that!

    I think sleeping is escapism and everything that happen during the course of the day or week gets played out there.

    Hope you are finding some time to rest after the challenge, Lee!

    It's great being productive - it's also great to keep balance within!

    Peaceful dreams!

  16. When work gets hectic (as it is now) I start to have dreams about it. I don't even have to be consciously thinking about work to have the dreams in the middle of the night.

  17. Betty -- Dreams can be many things and serve many functions. The more you practice remembering the better you get. But you do have to take the time right after waking to reflect on the dreams and write down what you remember or you'll quickly forget them.

    a eye -- I think we naturally dream about the things that are mostly on our minds during waking life. The dream may really be about something else, but it usually uses a familiar setting to frame the dream message.


  18. I hate dreams about work. For a while I had a hard time figuring out what I had dreamed versus what I had done in real life.

  19. It is kind of creepy when real life and dream life start blending together. And how does this affect more distant memories? Are all of my memories real?


  20. When my writing partner and I were in the middle of writing one of our novels, I in England and she in Germany dreamed about our characters all the time. It's the same when I'm editing. My mind goes over and over what I'm doing, even in dreams.


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The Dreamer