I AND I, or, RENTADATE
Dreamed 1983/6/18 by Chris Wayan
My boss leaves. I move up to his job. But can I handle it? I'm an idealist, and not very practical.
I the dreamer come to visit the newly promoted me in the dream, to see how I like my new job. But for some reason, I avoid me.
In fact, to meet me, I have to crash a party in my own honor. I'm really hurt I didn't invite me, since I know me so well and all.
I thought we were friends.
I find a crowd outside the party hall, sitting in hedges, watching the herons wander by. Cynthia is here, and Teri, in a long negligee of black lace. They say they're crashing my party too. In fact everyone here says I didn't invite them! I wonder about that, and use the key under the mat.
The food's just sitting there on a table in an empty room.
So are the invitations. I never sent them! Typical--no practicality at all.
We all wait for me to arrive. My heir, Elegant Francois, studies the news bulletins coming in on an AP teletype machine. It's as slow as a bad telegraph line from 1850. For a minute I wonder if we're back in time, but then realize it's just more incompetence on the far end. I'm not just surrounded by incompetents, I'm informed by them.
The food is gone and we're all groggy drunk and about to give up when I arrive at last. I cause a sensation, for on my arm is a gorgeous date. Intelligent, charming, sexy, and nice? In five minutes the rumors have solidified into certainty: I had to have hired her! No one that smart would date ME of her own free will!
And I have to agree--it's the kind of thing I'd do to impress me and my friends. Insecure. Honestly! I'm embarrassed for me. And envious. I wish I had a girlfriend like my girlfriend. Or rent-a-date. Whatever.
With one word, I order my escort "Go over to Elegant Francois, and win him over." She goes at this enthusiastically, and despite himself he can't just snub the clinging bimbo, especially as he talks to her and realizes she's a lot of fun. She has just one flaw: so insecure about her own judgment, she does whatever fool thing I say! I start to sympathize, and so do others. Francois introduces her round, and we all agree--we like her more than me. We wish SHE were running things!
She and Francois sneak off to a back bedroom. An English matron listens at the French doors, hears giggles and cries, but doesn't peek. Did they really do it? Is she just following orders, or has she transferred her blind loyalty to Francois? Or is she following her own desires, is she free of me now?
We wait for the doors to open, and I think, "I don't like me much. Even I'd be a better boss. If she won't overthrow me, I will!"
A NOTE TWENTY YEARS LATER
The Rent-a-date girl did reappear in dozens of dreams. She named herself Silky, gradually quit deferring to others, and did end up running the show. She really was a better leader than the ego who hired her...
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