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FUNKY BUTT UGLY

Dreamed 1993/7/26 by Chris Wayan

I'm in the veg garden at my parents' house. A long trench with sand in the bottom. I tell my father "the Children have planted the whole row with carrot seeds and raked it. Well-meant, but I dunno if they'll sprout so far down." The Children are not ordinary kids: they're child prodigies who always stay in a group. They share a private language--or perhaps that's just a cover for a silent psychic link. Others find them spooky but I love them.

After inspecting the garden, I clean up the garage because we're interviewing a possible new housemate soon. Can he stand to live with spooky geniuses? Better make the place look nice to compensate.

He pulls up late and rummages leisurely through his car, looking for the Ritual Gift he's supposed to bring. Hear a loud "Damn!" He enters without it. He's a tall medium-built black guy, radiating too much good cheer for my taste. Maybe he doesn't like my melancholy nature either, because he ignores me and addresses my dad: "I gotta go back out and find that gift." I extend a hand reluctantly and say "I'm Chris." Again he ignores me, and rushes back out.

But as he does, he grins and starts singing at the top of his lungs. God, his voice sounds familiar! Who IS he? He sings over and over:

"Funky--Butt--Ugly!

FUNKY--BUTT--UGLY!"

And I wake before we can interview him.

NEXT MORNING

LATER THAT DAY

I go to a twelve-step group and a woman says: "I spent 10 years married to a man who couldn't spend money and was emotionally stingy too. He called me a delinquent because I'd come home and he wanted to listen to opera and I'd put on James Brown and dance around the room."

As she said this, I recognized the dream-guy's voice at last. So I was gritting my teeth all night at our next housemate, my repressed, denied true self...

James Brown.



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