I dreamed now that I wasn’t in the military, but others were pretending to be in the military.
My wife and I were at a social gathering. Packed and chaotic, it seemed so odd. Cakes were being served. People were drinking coffee and lemonade. Nobody was in a uniform but a man who claimed he was a colonel was demanding subservience and respect because he was the ranking officer. He was an old and bent, gray fellow. We were to obey every order, even though these orders were nonsensical. Obeying him and doing as he told was part of the social gathering. Part of it, as example, was that we, the fake military, stood at attention in rank and file, making fake weapons out of paper. I told my wife, “This is ridiculous. Why are we doing this?” I was ready to step out of line and walk away.
She replied, “Shhh. Just go along with it.”
Her response annoyed me as much as doing the fake crap, but I was doing this for her. The fake weapon-making finally ended, though. Relief flooded me. Walking away, I said, “Thank God.” But no, more crap was to come. The colonel was to give me a haircut.
I wasn’t willing to go along with that. One, I didn’t need a haircut. Two, I wasn’t going to get a haircut just because of some set of tradition, fake rules, or crazy personalities. I didn’t quite grasp why my wife and I were going through this mess of socializing and obedience, and I became more irritated and impatient by the minute.
But I acquiesced, for my wife. I was led to a small, crowded cubbyhole. Sitting in the worn, red-leather barber chair, I closed my eyes as the fake colonel cut my hair and talked to me. I understood little of what he said. First, he had an unusual accent. Second, he spoke an erratic syntax. His statements seemed unconcerned with whatever had been previously said.
The haircut was fast. He barely did anything. Eyes still closed, I attempted to get out of the chair. I didn’t realize that I’d been belted into it, and that a restraining arm was down over my waist. Hitting them, I stumbled to one side.
I caught myself without falling. The colonel said, “What are you doing? Why did you get out of the chair?”
I answered, “Because I wanted out of the chair.”
I’d briefly opened my eyes to see what had happened, and then closed them again. The colonel said, “The customer doesn’t decide when to get out of the chair. I tell you when to get out of the chair.”
“I don’t agree with that,” I replied. “I wanted out of the chair, so I did it.” Then I added, lying, “Because I was dizzy, and I wanted to stand up.”
My wife then arrived, asking what’d happened. I told her about it, including the lie that I’d felt dizzy and left the chair to feel better. I kept my eyes closed as I talked to her.
Then I said, “I lied. I was’t dizzy. I wanted out of that chair.” I immediately felt better.
The colonel asked for payment. Opening my eyes and looking around, I saw the crap around me and shook my head. My eyes were open. I was done there. It was time to go, and that’s what I told my wife.
The dream ended.