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Dart in her Chest

Dreamed 1984/8/21 by Wayan

Air Force pilots' bootcamp. Women were recently accepted in the program. The brass decided to test whether men & women could work in combat by integrating the barracks too. Most hadn't expected that twist. The bootcamp sergeant uses this to stress out the women cadets, by forcing everyone suit up simultaneously in haste. The sarge forces Brivate Benjamin (played by Goldie Hawn) and at least one other woman in the barracks to change tops, baring their breasts to their barrackmates, mostly men. Keeps at these two, inventing trivial uniform violations, forcing them to change repeatedly in public.

Finally the other girl, told once more that her uniform is improper, stages a die-in! Tears off her uniform, wraps herself in an orange towel, and lies back on a table, folding her hands on her breastbone as if dead, holding a dart as if shot in the heart with a crossbow... and refuses to move. No matter what the drillmaster says or does, she won't budge. Dead. In protest.

Suddenly he laughs and calls everyone in and announces "I won't be pulling that trick any more. She's won my respect." And looking around at the other cadets, he adds "and the rest of you who didn't protest won my contempt. Sometimes you gotta break the rules. If you do, do it--all the way. Put yourself on the line. Or the table."

Female Airforce cadet stages a die-in protest: lies on table in orange towel with a dart in her chest; psychic dream sketch by Wayan. Click to enlarge.

NOTES IN THE MORNING

I see echoes of the movie Private Benjamin (Goldie Hawn, 1980).

She wears an orange towel = my friend Catherine B. wore one after our pool party. But why does the dream have her stage a "die-in"? And why killed by a dart?

LATER THAT DAY

Woman with a dart in her chest: predictive! A friend just gave me a calendar of art by Mercer Mayer illustrating the Nordic folktale East o'the Sun, West o' the Moon. At the climax, the heroine fires a dart into the chest of the Troll Princess, who falls back turned to wood.

1987/3/21 (two and a half years later)

I just learned Catherine killed herself, after an injury left her too crippled to ride her beloved horses. A very physical person, devastated by disability...

Took it to heart. So to speak.



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