“I’m in a dream, right?” I said to Richard as he was boiling his clothes in the iron kettle in the back yard of his front property. I often have dreams and know they are dreams while I am dreaming them. They call it ‘Lucid’. Richard calls it ‘Reality Biting’, then goes on a rampage about how “we are all brainwashed into believing that it is wrong to do this”, and cites examples of times when man could have used a good “kick in the ass” having chosen the wrong thing to do instead.
What gets me, is that I knew I was dreaming, yet I continued to let it play out. As I said, Richard was boiling his clothes and what he was using as ‘detergent’ was what blew my mind and made me consciously speak that questioning statement.
There the two of us were in his back/front yard, boiling clothes, then Richard added rice to the watered work clothes, but that wasn’t all. He generously added chicken stock, fat ‘n’ all, plus a touch of dehydrated vegetables (corn, carrots and sweet baby peas). Tasting spoonful by spoonful before getting the right mixture. When it tasted right, he then dumped in a gallon of kerosene and continued stirring, but no longer tasting the concoction.
I can recall that I backed away when I saw that red container in his hands. I backed far enough away, so not to become a victim in what I assumed would be a laundry explosion. I was also far enough away from ground zero to be able to run for the hose, which wasn’t on it’s perch, so I became a raving maniac trying to find it. But like I said, I was assuming that back lot to the front yard would be ablaze and I was winded just from frantically looking for a hose that wasn’t where it was kept.
As the story unfolded, it was getting to be about lunch time and I was hungry, not for soup (that would have just been weird), I wanted a full-course meal with salad, side dishes and of course, I wanted dessert. Richard was just as hungry, so we went inside the house to the kitchen, where there were piles of mounds of work clothes, dirty, smelly and awaiting their turn in the kettle. “How are we supposed to chop the greens and cook the food? There’s no room in here!”, I loudly yelled as I punched his right arm. And Richard, being of the Brautigan Clan and also being a man with many clever secrets up his sleeves, just looked at me, shook his head and walked into another room, where he picked-up the telephone and ordered our meal to be delivered. He didn’t want to unattend his brew.
In the meantime of waiting the delivery, we both went outside, he to his boiling clothes and me to put the hose back where it belongs.
How did I know this was a dream and not anything but one? Richard is dead, since 1984 and I live on the right side of the continent, Richard never travelled to the east coast. So chances are, we would never have met, let alone eaten together.
ThinkingTen -Take it Away, Tuesday: I’m in a dream, right?