Orgy of death. Again.

For my day-job, I rent workspace, and one place I worked has recently closed down.  Not particularly a problem, because I was hardly ever there anyway, and there are other places I can work from, but I did like the manager there.  He was a gentle, unassuming middle-class hippie who I imagine trying to balance yurt-living with academia.

Last night I dreamt he was repurposing the space to hold soirees where people came to play music, exhibit art, smoke the pipe and almost certainly have orgies.  I was just a little offended that he didn’t think my business would fit in with that.

But then dead bodies – naked ones, I think – started turning up in the city.  They were dumped just beyond the edges of my parents’ cul-de-sac (which as you may know, is in an entirely different part of the country from where I live), and I think my mum and I discovered them together.

Whatever point my subconscious mind was trying to make recently with this dream, it obviously feels I haven’t got it yet.  (Fair enough, I haven’t.  There was so much going on in the moonlight dream that I could be mulling it over for months.)

What recurring themes have you noticed in your dreams?  Do you have dreams that recur every so often, over many years (like the one where your exams are tomorrow, and your revision notes have turned into a shoe)?  Or, as I’m having currently, a cluster of similar-feeling dreams happening over a few weeks or months?  Let me know in the comments!

Oh, and please do subscribe to this site so that I can update you on the next unlikely killing spree.

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by moonlight

I was watching a film at my parents’ place (a device my subconscious particularly loves to use).  In it, an almost-pubescent girl was guest at a huge old house owned by a man with something of the undead about him.  To my dreaming mind, the house looked like that of my best friend from junior school, with the same split level floors (the first floor had mezzanines, and didn’t make sense as just one storey), and rooms that instead of having jusst one door – in and out – had doors in at least two of their walls, so that you could lock one door behind you and carry on through the other exit to the next chamber.  But this house, of course, was much bigger than the one where I used to play.

moonlight house

Other guests were staying at the house, adults and children, mostly females, the girl didn’t know how many.  Almost nightly, a guest or two would disappear, presumed eaten, but the girl didn’t guess that her host was the culprit.  He was a kind man, her friend, if a little hard for some people to understand because he kept to himself and was ponderously intellectual.  The girl liked that.  She understood it.

By now, almost all the others were gone.  The girl was beginning, reluctantly at first and then with terror, to face what she had suspected all along but suppressed.  She had thought her gentle host wouldn’t attack her.  She had turned a blind eye to what happened to the others, as lond as she believed herself exempt.  But what else had she decieved herself about?

She crept down to the cellar seeking – but hoping not to find – evidence of what had happened to her fellows.  Their remains, some of their possessions, even – could they be? – some people still alive.  In the cellar was a sunken pool filled with a kind of stagnant green slime.  (At this point, my mum came into the room, looked at the TV screen and said, “I’m not watching this, it’s too grisly for me.”)

Terrified, the girl fled back upstairs.  In the dark house, she ran through room after room locking each door behind her, both looking for her delusive host and praying not to be found by him.

In one room, she could dimly make out a bed, and a man sitting on it.  From the faint moonlight coming in through the heavy curtains, she did not see his full nakedness but only the strong torso lit by a cold blue glow.  In the silence and darkness, she softly reached out her hand to touch this male skin.  For a moment, she was rapt at the sensation of solid muscle beneath her fingers.  The man did not move; had she percieved him in that moment as a man and not merely a sensual object, she would have sensed him holding his breath too.  Then she remembered that her murderous host would soon find her here if she didn’t run, and so she scrambled into the next room, struggling with trembling fingers to secure the chain on the door.

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?

Crazy shit lady

Temporarily living back with my parents, I was walking around the perimeter of their cul-de-sac.  Rural cul-de-sacs are not like urban ones; they are surrounded not by other streets and houses but by fields and long-distance A-roads.  A madwoman had started trespassing in my parents’ garden.  She shouted at me as I walked past, wanting me to entertain her with my company, and getting aggressive when I didn’t stop to talk.

Later that week, she stole one of my Mum’s fabric aprons from the kitchen and disappeared it into the garden.  When Mum demanded it back, the madwoman returned it sure enough, rolled up into a tight ball.  Our two cats, one black-and-white and one tabby, were investigating the scene, the fur on their backs twitching with displeasure.

We unrolled the apron with a sense of dread, which turned out to be well-founded as the bundle contained a large quantity of the woman’s own semi-liquid shit.  I don’t often have lucid dreams where I can control the outcome, but on this occasion my subconscious intervened and said that’s just too disgusting.  At least make it solid.  So I viewed the exact same scene again, this time with firmer stools in the apron, which may have been slight consolation to my Dad who had to dispose of them.

 

Murder, she watched

At my parents’ house, poorly with a bad cold.  On TV there was a film which I happened also to be reading the book of.  I’d watched the film on my own, whilst lying on the sofa.  Just the next day, my parents wanted to see the film too; I didn’t particularly want to watch it again, especially as it was pretty disturbing, but I was kind of stranded on the sofa, too sluggish to move.  Once again I saw the same narrative unfold in front of me.  I was starting to find I could quote bits of the dialogue in advance, stuck in a loop of film-book-film:

A wealthy, middle-class couple came to stay one summer with another couple, in their mansion house.  When I think about it now, the setting and characters remind me of A Dangerous Corner, a 1930s play which I saw on stage a couple of years ago.

Shortly after they arrived, the one man murdered his wife (by lethal injection?) to clear the way for he and the other man to engage in a long tournament; they would take it in turns to inject mild poison into the backs of each others’ hands. Each injection required a fresh scratch to the hand, so they had to keep looking for one good vein after another.  It seemed to be a macho competition, to see who could survive the longest as each dose of poison gradually weakened them towards, inevitably, the death of at least one of the two.

murder she wrote SMALL

wtf, subconscious?

I had been ill at my parents’ house recently.  I had both read and watched The Book Thief, which might have – on a literal level – prompted the dream-feeling of taking in the same story again and again, although I think, symbolically, the dream also wants me to be aware of a pattern in my life that keeps repeating. Given the subject matter, that pattern is presumably in my intimate relationships.

This was a semi-lucid dream, in which I was aware that it was me creating the story, but I didn’t know how it would end.  I have those quite often – where I’m writing a book, or watching a film or play that I wrote – and I’ve assumed that that was because I actually want to write something longer and publishable, but don’t currently feel like I can. Looking at this particular dream though – the motif of a story that keeps repeating – I think there’s more.  I know what the patterns are that keep repeating in my relationships (and elsewhere in life), but so far, knowing hasn’t helped me to change, at least not enough.  Murder, she watched challenges me to see how passive I still am, never really authoring my own fate but just watching as entirely predictable events unfold.

As for the nature of these predictable events, according to the dream… if I (grudgingly) go with the likely Freudian interpretation, that injections are a metaphor for penetrative sex, then what we have here is a man who kills his wife (possibly by having sex with her), leaving him free to engage in some kinky shit with another man.

If I’m the wife, then I’m afraid that a partner will betray me and cause my soul-death?  Possible…but the wife was too minor a character for me to think that’s it.

If I’m the other guy’s wife, then I know what’s going on and I’m just turning a blind-eye? Hmm.

I have no current concerns that the person I recently took up with is going to ditch me for another man.

And if I’m one of the blokes, then what the fuck?

Psychoanalyst Carl Jung wrote that we all have a male and female side to our pysches, and if he were to interpret my dream, I imagine he’d say that the male side of my psyche (my animus) wishes to ‘kill off’ my female side, at least when it comes to relationships.  To cast aside archetypally ‘feminine’ tendencies towards romantic commitment, in favour of the more ‘masculine’ pursuit of sex without love.

But for me, the penny only dropped when I was looking at pictures of blood-filled syringes with which to illustrate this blog, and I suddenly made the association with HIV.  So, I take the dream to represent a lurking fear that I might die of something sexually transmitted.

I did have that fear just under a year ago, when I caught a flu virus that had also taken down several of my friends.  I knew that a seasonal bug was going round, but because for the last few years I’d seemed to keep catching whatever went, I got myself terrified that I had an underlying problem with my auto-immune system.  At that time, I’d been in an exclusive relationship for years, and around the start of that relationship I’d had all the routine tests done, so my risk of any STIs was all but nonexistent. Even so, I was on the brink of booking another test when the flu, and my paranoid thoughts with it, started to lift.  Later, comparing notes with friends who’d been house-bound with the same virus, it turned out that morbid, uncharacteristic and / or irrational thoughts had been a common symptom.

Another time – about ten years ago – I had a few bouts of ovulation pain or mittelschmerz, but not knowing what it was, I naturally assumed that my ovaries were dying, (I had a mental image of them turning black and shrivelling up like a walnut) and that this was God’s punishment for my having immoral sexual thoughts. Despite my being monogamous with only my second boyfriend at the time.  And despite, you know, not believing in God.  

I give you these examples to show you some extent of my mind’s capacity for what-the-fuckery, which is not limited to the dream state but sometimes enhanced by it.

Any further thoughts, readers? If you recognise any of these happenings from your own dreams, let me know in the comments!

 

 

Not today.

Let’s start with a pre-cognitive dream.

My friend Helen and I were in the bathroom at my parents’ house, supposedly getting ready to go out. But she had a stomach ache and felt sick. She curled up in the bathroom cabinet, clutching her stomach; I could see she was really in intense pain.

She asked for a bucket to puke in, but I didn’t want to go round the house looking for one. I tried not to show that I really just wanted to hurry out for an evening of fun, and didn’t want to have to look after a vomiting person. I offered her a measuring jug, cringing inwardly at the thought that it might not hold as many chunks as were about to come out.

To my relief, what came out of Helen’s mouth was a perfect, lightly fried egg. I emptied the egg into the bath and it plopped slimily into the tub like a fish.

Each time I held the jug to Helen’s chin, she produced another egg, which slid into the bath with the others.

WTF, subconscious?

What stands out to me about this dream is my reluctance to help my friend beyond what was strictly convenient for me. I felt impatient and at least a little bit disgusted at her predicament. (Sorry mate!) I think it’s suggesting that I feel over-burdened or compromised by looking after other people’s needs. I’m torn between not wanting to be selfish, and resenting those who do encroach on what I hoped was going to be fun-time for me.

Dreaming of our parents’ / childhood homes (which I do a lot) generally suggests some unresolved issues from our upbringing. The feelings of not wanting to let other people’s needs compromise my own – but not wanting to let on that I feel that way – are ones that I recognise. And presumably they stem from childhood.

Context

Helen and I actually were going out together the following evening. But why eggs, I had no idea.

We were going to a comedy gig (Bianca Del Rio’s Not Today, Satan, if you’re curious), and before that we went for dim sum. I ordered a daring selection of seafood, and Helen went for vegetarian delicacies, including some caramel buns, which came nestled in a bamboo steamer like eggs in a basket.

She couldn’t finish the last one, so we cut it in half. And this is what I saw:

cd384ee8a071014e18daede369426cd2

….

So when I came to write this blog, I searched the internet to show you caramel buns looking like cooked eggs…

But Google went one step further.

buns

buns-2

What. The actual. Fuck.

…I hope you’ve enjoyed this, my first ever post on wtfsubconscious? You can use the contact page to send me any comments, questions, suggestions on how to make this blog more awesome, or dreams of your own that you’d like to share.

Catch you again soon!