I’ve f*cking had it with cold callers….AND the rest of you!

I’ve been getting up to twenty missed calls a day from the same 0207 number.  They’ve been at it for weeks and they never leave a message.  I’ve no intention of answering; they’ve been reported as a nuisance caller on some online forums and – huzzah! – I’ve just figured out how to block numbers on the phone I’ve only had for about two years.  I’m not amongst the most tech-savvy of my generation.  Then again, it’s nice that I haven’t needed the block function until now.

So, last night’s dream.  I was with X, a lady I know through Bollywood dance.  She’s a little older than me, and very mild-tempered.  The same 0207 number came up on my phone and I fucking lost it.  My rag, I mean. Not my phone.  X looked remonstratively at me as I laid into the person on the other end.  Yeah I know they’re trying to make a living like everyone else.  I was sorry to be swearing and raging like this in front of her, when she’d always thought I was a nice and gentle person.  At the same time I felt resentful; nobody knew how much I’d had to put up with and who was X or anyone else to judge me for my fury?

wtf, subconscious?

This was old rage, man.  Rage, and also despair.  I felt so powerless to stop these intrusions into my privacy and the aggressiveness of the cold-callers.  What did I care if this particular trigger-happy sales-targeteer was kind of a scapegoat for so many others.

When I think about why it was X who cropped up in my dream – someone I don’t know all that well – I recall that I do know she had an unhappy marriage.  Considering this is a woman who almost never has a bad word for anyone, I’ve heard her describe her ex-husband in pretty strong terms.

Over the years, it’s not only belligerent sales-badgers who’ve bounded across my boundaries.  This dream was the anger equivalent of the fear I felt in ok, computer. Both dreams featured shame or guilt. I feel ashamed to be heard expressing my anger. I feel guilt at the thought that I might really be in the wrong.  So X has a conflicting role in this dream.  She probably knows a thing or three about anger, and yet I worried about offending her with mine. It’s still so hard not to feel ashamed.

 

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ok, computer.

Back living at my parents’ house, it would seem.  I realised they were on to me about my secret, sexual shenanigans and were furious; I had about half an hour to frantically delete files and online accounts before they ransacked my computer for evidence.

I think we’re harking back over ten years with this one.  The chances of either of my parents demanding access to my computer to see what I get up to in the hay are, thankfully, nil.

Not that I’m saying there’d be a huge amount for them to find.  It’s just, you know.

But I did have a boyfriend who used to check up on me online and log in to my email account to see if I was setting up dates with other dudes.  The thing I really find staggering is how long he’d been doing it before I realised. The intimidation tactics that my dream-parents used, and their fury, are what I knew from him.

When I finally split up with that boyfriend (for good), the Wimbledon finals were on. So the next day I watched the entire gentlemen’s match (Federer being put through his paces by Nadal) from the sofa with a bottle of champagne.  For a good several years later, I felt a little moment of triumph whenever I realised it was Wimbledon-time again.  I think last year was the first time it almost passed me by; we don’t watch live TV in my household and I just happened to swing by a pub that was showing the BBC coverage.  Come June, it will have been a decade.

In my studies of the subconscious, I’ve noticed how surprisingly it creates links between one thing and another. When I told my friend A about the third episode in beds, boots and bad debts – when I recieved a threatening demand for loan repayment, postmarked 2007 – I said I couldn’t think why that year, in particular, came up.  She pointed out that a full ten years had passed since then and suggested that my subconscious was carrying out a review of what had changed.

bad debts and ok computer feel similar to me; they both show my privacy being invaded, and the threat of (some form of) harm being done to me by others, which I have supposedly incurred on myself.  In my dreamscape, images of going back to university, settling debts, ending and beginning relationships, and trying for self-fulfillment without incurring criticism or punishment, are clinging to one another as climbing plants reach out tendrils to bind themselves together.  With all these interlinking tendrils, how do we bring a story full-circle?

bonfires and bunnymen..?

I’m looking at a note-to-self that I wrote in the middle of the night:

It says Bunnymen (presumably Echo and the – ), bonfires, and the name of my godmother who died in 2005.

I don’t know.

I do remember unlocking the door to what was my house in the dream (in reality, the front door of a friend-of-a-friend’s house, which I’ve been past but never into), and entering the kitchen (in reality, the kitchen I knew until I was seven). My godmother, J, came to see me there. She knew I was tired from working long days in my administration job, and from having the baby to raise on my own.

Later, a bitter row with my Mum (whose best friend was J), at the dinner table. My Dad and his brother-in-law were there too.  Mum made digs about my relationship with my ex (? By which I mean my real life ex, presumably the dream-baby’s father), and I retaliated by saying that her comments were equally true of her relationship with my father.  Ouch.

Perhaps the note about bonfires related to flame-wars…?

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (1)

I’d booked to see a play – Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead – at the theatre I used to work at.  But whereas the real venue is in a modern building, this one was a tall Victorian edifice with a steep rake on each of the four tiers.

I’d been keen enough that I came to see the show on my own – maybe it was last minute, maybe no-one else had been available – and I expected to feel fairly at home anyway since I knew the theatre and some of the staff there.  But I hadn’t been sent a ticket, only a reference number to my phone, and when I got to the entrance to the upper gallery, I couldn’t find any trace of email or text from the theatre. I kept telling the usher – a young, cynical guy with a curling lip – that I’d seen it on my phone immediately before I left the house, that I had paid, that I used to work here. My anger was rising (an anger I recognise well from real life, any time I feel I’m being patronised, disrespected, talked down to or blocked by bureaucracy).  A group of school children in their early teens and private school uniforms – green and black kilts on the girls, blazers – were lined up at the other entrance just feet away from me, and I felt them and their teachers waiting to judge me if I showed my anger or tried to demand on being let in.

The literal background for this one was that I had tried to book tickets to see Rosencrantz and Guildenstern at the Old Vic in London, with K, to find that they were almost sold out and the few remaining would cost, if not your firstborn, then at least some small person to whom you were vaguely attached.  But I wasn’t angered by not being able to get oltickets. Fair enough, I should have got onto it as soon as I heard the show was premiering.  Somewhere else in my life – or in a lot of aspects of life – there is a recurrent, simmering anger that things are being made difficult for me somehow.

I’ve been to this dream-theatre before, I think, and looked from the entrance to the grand circle or gallery, down towards the stage.  But the floor has been absent, there was only water or a sheer drop beneath me.  I think I’ve been due either to perform there or to work as an usher, and haven’t been able to get from one part of the theatre to another.

In this dream, after being turned away by the first usher I spoke to, I saw one of the duty managers I used to know, who said she might be able to sneak me in if I waited til the show had just started.  But I found myself walking through dark corridors not being able to find my way back to the auditorium.  As I recall that, I’m reminded of a dream I had just under a year ago, when I was performing in a far larger show than I’ve done in real life…but more about that in another blog.

which is worse – disappointing sex or disappointing breakfast?

Two boys of about eighteen or nineteen, who shared a bedroom as students.  One saw his various sexual conquests as a sign of his machismo and boldness.  The other considered lust to be shameful and weak, and regularly told his room-mate that his behaviour was sinful.  In reality, their sex lives differed very little, and each one was writing a confessional memoir.  Both books featured the same sex object, a girl who both young men were regularly sleeping with, and whose name had one letter different from mine.

A would-be erotic dream where I’m in bed, possibly in a hotel, with an unidentified casual who (according to the dream) I’ve seen a few times before.  But he’s unattractively sweaty and I’m considering telling him I don’t want to meet again after today.  He climaxes (I think?) and sort of half-heartedly suggests starting again after he’s had a rest, but he sounds grumpy at the idea of having to attend to my pleasure, and I’m not sure I can stomach it anyway.

Staying the night a hotel with my mum and Sibling. We met in the restaurant for breakfast, but since I don’t do well at mornings, the other two were there before me.  I arrived just after 10am to find that the restaurant, which was Portugese-influenced, had stopped serving its breakfast menu.  Apparently, the Portugese don’t really have specially designated breakfast foods, so fry-ups and cereal were only served as a concession to unadvanturous guests before 10am.  After that, you picked from the standard restaurant menu that was available all day.  I had some kind of lightly spiced pork and rice concoction, which was delicious but not the eggs royale I’d had in mind.  Next to our table, another family (middle-aged parents, teenage or young adult children) were kicking up a stink about the restaurants total disregard to its customers’ needs. Coming over here, taking away our food-based traditions…

hands to hold

I’d organised group tickets to see a dance performance, at a theatre I used to work in.  This show was the latest full-length piece by a small contemporary dance company who I’d seen a few times over the years, and I told a bunch of my friends they needed to see it.

Sibling and I rocked up to the theatre, which had been refurbished and parts of it rebuilt since I was last there.  There was now a long, straight corridor with the bar area to our right as we went in, and to the left, the smallest of their auditoria, where the dance company would perform. No-one else from our group was there yet; I said I’d skip to the bathroom and Sibling offered to get the drinks in while I was there. When I asked if a glass of prosecco could possibly be obtained (I don’t know why since there are better drinks than prosecco) he pointed out it was two-for-one so he may as well get me a flute for each hand.

The corridor leading to the ladies’ toilets seemed to keep extending and gaining extra turns and sub-areas leading off it.  I wasn’t worried about making it, but about getting back in time; having arrived well before my friends, I knew that by now they would be here and wondering where I was, and Sibling would be left to fend for himself with, presumably, four drinks but no company to share them.

I was getting increasingly fretful as I tried to find my way back to the auditorium; the tickets for my entire group were in my pocket so if the theatre wasn’t admitting latecomers, Sibling and all my friends would miss out too.  I felt anger rising to near-hysteria; why was the theatre layout so irrational, why were they hindering me?

At last a friendly, young woman ushered me in; the seating area was kind of sunken into the floor.  L and A, friends of about ten years, waved to get my attention. Sibling and the others were there.  I sat inbetween my ex and my recent-current, and almost immediately I wanted to hold hands with each of them on either side; I felt I couldn’t take either one’s hand without the other feeling left out.

wtf, subconscious?

It’s only when writing this dream up (as has often happened since I started wtfsubconscious) that I spot a connection between the two glasses of prosecco and the two lovers (ex and current).  The dominant emotions in the dream were anxiety and frustration, and that extends to the two-of-each situation.  Sibling buys me two drinks, but then we’re separated so I can’t actually have them.  Two men have (or have had) romantic feelings for me, but I’m too anxious about the potential consequences to relax with this.  In waking life, I know that I do have a fear that “you can’t have everything,” or that seeking “too much of a good thing” will end badly for me.  At times, that fear has been pretty paralysing.  At present, I’ve been trying to ignore it but this dream seems to let me know the anxiety is still there.

How about you, readers?  Have you had similar dreams to this one, and what did you make of them?