The Theater Dream

The theater dominated, but there were several features, some of which are clichés to the max (ha), like a military phone call (that wasn’t a call), and being pantless.

To begin –

With others, including a boss I used to have, we were going to the theater. This was some special deal, a grand event.

Checking in was an odd process. We entered a pristine, glistening marble foyer, black on the floor, pink on the walls, white on the ceiling. Stunning. Machines were embedded in the pink walls. After moments of floundering uncertainty about what to do, we realized the machines would provide us with our tickets. More floundering (instructions were absent) before figuring out, look into the small bas relief image on the machine and speak your name. Tickets were issued with fast, impressive swish. We guessed that it was a security system which identified us via a retina scan and voice.

The ticket lit up with gold arrows telling us where to go. Following its arrows, we learned from an employee that the ticket was geared to our bodies, that the machine back there had also verified our weight and scanned our bodies to verify who we were. Wow, some system, we said to one another, while wondering, why would a ticket need to be so specific to an individual? Nervous jokes were made.eate

I ended up in a bedroom. This couldn’t be right, I thought, but was reassured by my previous boss that it was. She was friends with the theater owner, so had gotten this box for us. It was the owner’s personal box. But I, confused, because it was a bedroom, was ready to challenge that when one wall opened, showing the stage right in front of us. Besides that, my ex-boss showed how we could watch the play via multiple monitors.

Great deal, I thought, impressed, but still freaked. The box was obviously a bedroom, and was full of jewelry. Be jeweled bracelets and watches abounded, along with key chains with keys. I didn’t want to touch anything lest people thought I was trying to steal it.

Then, horror, I knocked a bracelet off a dresser. It landed in my pocket. With alacrity, I fished it out, hurrying because I didn’t want to be seen.

A phone rang. I realized it was the Wing Commander calling on his hotline. Punching on the connection via one of the old 306 consoles (where did that come from), I answered with my name and rank.

“Sorry,” the commander replied. “I was sleeping and accidentally pressed the button.

Time to go! Leaving the theater, we went to a party in a luxurious mansion. Bottles of expensive red wine were being opened. People were asking me, what wine do you want? What bottle should I open? I was answering, there are bottles already open, let’s not waste them. I like red wine.

Bottles were opened anyway. I had a little red wine, straight from a bottle. Wow, it was fantastic. Then —

Time to go! Seeing the wine being wasted, I tried to put corks back into the bottles. They fell out, refusing to stay. I as being urge on.

Back at my place with my wife (which I understood was a temporary place), she offered me food, which were breakfast leftovers, she explained. I selected a few pieces, even though they were cold, and ate a bit, which tasted good. Then —

Time to iron! I needed to iron some pants because I wasn’t wearing any. I found pants and two ironing boards with irons in another room. One iron was small, like a toy. They other was a standard-sized iron on a standard folding board. The two options confused me. Before I could decide —

Time to go! My wife informed me that we needed to leave to go clean up another place. I protested that I’m not wearing any pants. “Don’t worry,” she replied. “Nobody will see you.”

We arrived via dreamport (that is, we turned around and were there) in a small house that doubled as a business. It looked tidy but my wife said that we needed to clean it. I agreed but told her that I needed to iron my pants and put them on first.

Right after that was announced, several of my wife’s friends arrived. I hastened to cover my lower nakedness as they laughed, hooted, and pointed, brushing it off, they’d seen it before, before they went off into another room, where my wife served them coffee and tea.

The dream ended.

I think my subconscious (working with my conscious mind) this morning, decided this dream was about broken dreams and lost promises. But after thinking about it while walking and then writing it out, I think it’s about the imposter syndrome.

Monday’s Theme Music

“Back in the U.S.S.R” by the Beatles (1968) is today’s theme music. I thought it was appropriate to give a nod to a nation that no longer exists, one who built walls to keep their nation safe while building up a huge military and cutting their social safety nets and education, a nation whose primary concern became driven by the ruling party, who did everything they could to remain in power, control and intimidate their citizens.

It’s a pretty good song.

Razors & Computer Security

Remember back when razors came as a single blade? Then we advanced to twin blades and multiple blades. My current razor has three blades. It’s all in the pursuit of the closest shave possible.

And that was a good thing. It used to be so hazardous walking on the street as a man. You’d be going along, minding your own business, when, suddenly, a car screeches to a halt beside you, lights flashing. Uniformed people would leap out and surround you. “Let us feel your shave,” they would order, “to ensure it’s the closest that it can be.”

You had no choice but to comply, or risk getting sent to a barber for a shave. Our nation had no tolerance for any but the cleanest shaved man.

That’s how it seemed, at least from the commercials and advertisements.

I’ve always been amused by that approach, that more blades mean a closer shave, and more particularly, that a close shave is critical to civilization’s continued existence. We seem to be going down a similar path with computer security. If one layer of authentication is good, two is better. Hence, they’ve launched double-layered and two-step authentication. Naturally, it’s doomed to fall. Experts don’t seriously believe an absolutely secure computer is possible, if it’s accessing the web.

But I see a day in the future when companies and websites will tell you, “We’re more secure, because we have three layers of security.” Then someone else will announced, “Our security is better because we have four layers,” and the security race will be on.

Razors and computer security weren’t the first to think that if some was good, more was better. Remember American car ads, touting lower, longer, wider?

1949 Hudson Ad-02

Ford probably took the idea of more is better to an unusual but clever conclusion. They speculated that if some was good, then more is better with its front-end dive on braking. If some dive indicated your car’s brakes were doing their job and stopping you, then more dive would indicate better braking, right? They saved a lot of money and gained sales by gaming people into the perception their brakes were better because of that impressive front-end dive when you slammed on the brakes, when nothing had been changed.

Of course, we’ve always had the cubic inch and horsepower race. Still do, actually. Because, as they say, if some is good, more is better.

Probably why we have so many nukes in the United States. At least it feeds the perception that we’re safer.

Like with computers.

General Dream

“This is General Hamilton.”

Sure, I believed that. I was in the military again in this dream. My cell phone had rung. I’d answered. The other end had asked for Sergeant Seidel. I told them that was me. That’s when they identified themself.

Their voice was a pleasant tenor. Yeah, right, I thought, hearing that, and disconnected. I didn’t know a General Hamilton, and why would he be calling me? I was in the middle of some large, busy military complex. It was indoors and very modern. Everyone was in U.S. Air Force uniforms. I believe the location was in Florida.

I told someone else that a person had called and said they were General Hamilton. I didn’t know who that was. “It’s the commander,” they replied. “A five-star.”

A five-star? Seriously, a five-star calling me on my cell phone? Right.

The cell phone rang again. I answered. “This is General Hamilton.”

I answered with who I was and explained that we must have been disconnected. I remained dubious about who I was talking to.

“No problem,” he answered. “How do I get to the hospital?”

Was this a joke? I looked around. A large base directory, like in a mall, was mounted to a wall. “Where are you, General?”

“I’m in my office.”

“Where’s that?”

He told me. I traced it on the map. He seemed like he was two minutes away by car. The conversation continued, with me trying to understand why he was calling me, what his question meant, and what sort of help he was looking for.

“You’re the one responsible for coordinating activities, aren’t you?” he said.

Yes, that was one of my duties. As I was talking, I was walking and looking around, assessing where I was, trying to think through the issue and looking for anyone or anything that might be of help. His question completely baffled me. A five-star doesn’t have problems getting from one part of the base to another.

He had to hang up. He promised to call me back in a few minutes. “Thank you, sir,” I answered, and starting moving and thinking with more focused purpose. I’d made my way to the area he was trying to reach as I’d been talking to him. I’d realized he was going there to attend a ceremony taking place. I further knew who the organizers were, so I was heading there to talk to them. Most of the walls were glass. Although security was tight and I was often challenged, my security passes allowed me complete access.

Reaching the location of the ceremony, I entered and looked around. Although in a glass building, rolling, lush green grass dominated. Birds were singing, and it was sunny, with a warm breeze.

I saw the officer I sought. She was just concluding a speech. I hurried toward her. As I did, two heavily-armed security officers stepped up to her. They started talking. Thinking they were about to give her some problems, I hastened to them, because I knew that although she outranked me, I had a special position, and I could intercede.

I arrived at the end of their conversation. They were telling her, “We just wanted you to know that your story moved us, and we’re here to help you in any way that we can. We’re all here to help you.”

The officer was wiping off tears and sniffing. “Thank you.”

The security officers nodded and left. I gathered that her speech had been a moving one about loss, and they’d been moved. I just had that as an insight as I looked at her.

I started adding my condolences but was aware that time was short. She cut me off anyway, complaining about being emotional. I then began explaining my issue. I struggled to get the words out. As I did, I inadvertently called General Hamilton, General Mood.

I was correcting myself when she replied, “I know who you mean. That’s a good name for him. He’s really particular about how he travels. He has a phobia. That’s why he’s asking you for help. He wants to come here but he wants to walk.”

The explanation stunned me but as soon as I heard her, I knew what to do. It was just in time. The cell phone rang. I answered.

“This is General Hamilton,” they said from the other end.

I identified myself, and then began explaining what he needed to do. In the course of that, I realized that I called him General Mood. I immediately heard the mistake, apologized and corrected myself. He laughed. “That’s not a problem.”

Others came up to the officer I’d been talking to. They were concerned that General Hamilton hadn’t arrived. “I’m on the phone with him,” I replied, which impressed everyone. Then, as I resumed explaining how he was to reach our part, I looked up and saw him arriving.

The end.

***

I’ve typed the dream out to remember it so I forget as little as possible. In remembering it, some clues about what it’s about spoke to me, but overall, I need time to process it.

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