Strange dreams

I’ve been having some strange dreams lately. Last night (or was it this morning?) I dreamt I was packaging women’s shoes in a large shipping carton. I was retrieving them from my own closet. Now here’s the weird part (?)… they weren’t even my size! There were a helluva lot of shoes, too. All paired, as far as I can remember. I remember this one pair in particular, a set of sandals of the roman lace-up variety, all in red fabric, save for a wicker-looking sole-thingy…

… I just realized something. Most of my dreams feature exactly one character — me — and have no sound, but run in full, vibrant color. Oh, and I always know it’s a dream while I’m having it, but I go along with it anyway.

Consumer Angst

Finally, someone gets it.

[Edited to protect the verbally-inept, i.e., me]

Err… ever get to wondering why some things which seem so crystal clear to you completely escape the attention of others? Like, ambient noise, for example: some people are just better at tuning stuff out than others, like me. Well, having intrusive advertising in everything from the pen I write with to the side of the building I live in, poking at my senses relentlessly from dawn to dusk, well, it makes me irritable. Even though I’m a media junkie I find that I watch TV less, browse the web less, heck, even go out less, just to avoid the onslaught. (And I don’t even live in a big city! Imagine what I’d be like if I had to install myself a couple billboards down from Times Square?) Yet, no one aside from a couple of cranky designers makes much fuss over this. Jesus, doesn’t it bother you that you have to flip through about three hundred perfume samples before you can get to your monthly Cosmo Quiz?

We put a man on the moon (32 years ago, even!); surely we can devise a better way to make commerce?

My Youth

I’m unclear on my exact reasoning for this, but I have always held to the belief that, fundamentally, I haven’t changed all that much in about 20 years. (For you mathematicians out there, that means, since I was about 12.) Oh sure, I’ve become a little older and a little bolder, but that’s just putting on a coat of fresh paint of the same color. So imagine my shock upon finding this… The sheer level of ambivalence that ensued within was such that I couldn’t even finish watching the thing. And to think, I really, really liked this song when it came out…. Blame it on my youth.

Cycling

I think a lot when I go cycling. A lot more than usual, I mean. Yesterday the number of assorted, completely unrelated, fastidiously developed trains of thought that passed through my grand central station astounded even me. Among these:

God, I really love biking. Why oh why don’t I do this more often? (Answer: Because it really, really hurts my ass.)

When I think I “need” to get a “faster” bike, what I really need are stronger legs.

(Upon watching a small pack of harleys cruise past me:) I wonder if there is any relation between the ascribed “sex appeal” of a motorcycle and the notion that, at least from behind, a woman looks like she’s getting it on with the bike when she’s sitting on it?

I think a cool invention would be a point-and-shoot camera (or, even better, a camcorder) that could be operated safely by a moving cyclist. There are jillions of moments that I wish I could capture while in motion.

I wonder what I would do if someone suddenly opened their car door directly in front of my path? (Answer: brace for impact)

Heyyyy, are those cute girls looking at me? (Answer: no)

Do I look fat? (would not dignify that question with an answer)

People are morons. Observing the way they drive and conduct themselves in what is supposed to be leisurely traffic along a beachside boulevard thoroughly supports my conclusion. I am ashamed to be counted among their number… Great, yet one more thing I feel the need to apologize for. (But to whom?)

Is it worth bicycling 16 miles roundtrip to a music store just to buy a $1.50 part for the guitar I’m building? Yes, it is. Only because I wanted an excuse to go on a bicycle ride of about that distance.

… Still, I really wish the guy who I phoned at the music store would have advised me that they had recently relocated half a town away. (Yes, I found out they had moved the store when I reached the old location and read a hand-writen sign posted there.)

… And brick-and-mortar retailers wonder why fewer people buy stuff from them. Thank God for mail-order.

It’s a really neat thing they finally completed mapping the entire human genome. I wonder how long it will be until concrete applications of the revolutionary sort will be made available to humanity at large.

(quickly followed by…) I’m pretty sure that If I owned a fine restaurant and was raking in good cash from it I certainly wouldn’t go out of my way to ensure that both my show-off, look-at-me sports cars were color-coordinated. In Big Bird Yellow.

(and, finally:) I wouldn’t own and operate a restaurant if it was the last job left on earth. That must be the purgatory of small business owners.

And so on.

When I end my ride I find that this frantic level of mental activity basically drops to zero, as if my mind was congratulating itself on a job well done by going into some near-comatose “cool-off” period. Consequently, I find many of my thoughts immediately begin to dissipate (hence the pot-luck nature of the previous list), well before I can write them down, like that vivid dream that wakes you in the middle of the night but whose details you just can’t recall by morning. One of my worst habits, panicking over the possibility that I “may have missed some Crucial Detail about ___ …” really kicks in then. Now I remember the real reason why I don’t bike more often. So much for getting any sleep tonight.

The Age of Spiritual Machines

I can’t believe that, in this day and age of digital this and that, I am being held hostage by a temperamental VCR. An analog, no-nonsense, not-even-stereo VCR at that. Nevermind that I only require its services but once a week, when I (attempt to) tape the Sopranos for a friend. Do you think perhaps machines have a soul? Has my trusty little bessie had enough of the senseless violence and stereotype-mongering it’s forced to faithfully record, week after week?

Fools

I remember a time in my life not long ago when taking time to invent April Fools’ pranks for my best friends was the thing to do. Now it just seems impractical. Ah well, happy April Fools (belated, no less).