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A Squirrely Business Plan
Dreamed 2009/3/2 by Wayan
My ex-girlfriend Cheryl just emailed me to call me a moral coward. Been a year since we broke up; what seems to have provoked her was my recent work on the World Dream Bank. Has she spotted literary cowardice? Maybe she's right--as I reread the pieces she mentions, they do seem subdued... safe. The last truly risky work was a full year ago--an epic nightmare on the conflicts in the love-triangle at the heart of that tempestuous year. But Cheryl, and Emily too (the third corner of the triangle) were both uneasy that I wanted to bare our private lives on the Net, and asked me to pull it. I did--the first time I've censored the World Dream Bank that way.
Have I been self-censoring since, to placate others? I read through my raw dream-journal for 2008, and am shocked to find rich powerful images and messages, all unpublished--self-censored. Cheryl's right! I have been holding back, afraid to offend her and Em. Yet... Cheryl flames me for holding back. Can't have it both ways! It may no longer matter to Em: she's put me behind her. That year's dreams and dramas are dead issues now. But Cheryl's still gnawing it over obsessively; her letter read innuendo into dreams that weren't even about her. Everything offends her! Can't appease the unappeasable.
I wonder what my dreams themselves think--of that year, of Cheryl's letter, of my self-censorship.
I'm in my family's house, squatting on the tile floor. I lean back against a padded office-partition. Looks like it was stolen from the Stanford Library. From inside the office cubicle it defines, a guy's projecting a slideshow. At first the slides showed charts and plans and lists. A business presentation. He tells us, step by step, his business plan... to seduce someone.
Each step sounds reasonable enough--he says he's in love, and just needs to prove his love, reassure his lover, and take the initiative because his lover is younger and less experienced.
But at last we get beyond the pie charts. A photo of his lover... and it's the young son of a suburban family. Not even a teen, a borderline case we might excuse: a small child, and straight, too. Our businesslike seducer guiltlessly lays out strategies to convince the kid he's ready for sex (though he's not) and gay (though he's not)...
One side of me listens to each step of his seduction plan in isolation, thinking "yes, that's logical"; the rest of me, seeing the whole, gets steadily angrier with each slide.
But a third side is puzzled. How can I--these two Is--ignore the crucial truth of that snapshot? This isn't a human business plan! The seducer's a giant skunk, and the suburban family he's stalking is a family of squirrels. The young son may be only months old, not years. He'll never be legal age--squirrels don't even live to 18! Hell, even sneaky suave Mr. Businesskunk is probably a three-year-old...
So a gay underage skunk plans to hump a baby squirrel. Moral? Immoral? Or just too ridiculous for morality to apply?
NOTES IN THE MORNING
- Skunk seducer: Remember the 1950s cartoons of Pepe le Pew, that suave, stinky, ridiculous Don Juan who wooed a bewildered housecat?
- Gay skunk's plan: I just read some furry erotica by Skunkaholic, about a skunk mistress who enslaves a human girl who'd supported an anti-fur hate group; the furs gave her a choice of sex-slavery or death. But it was a life sentence, at least in the chapters I read. I wanted her free, once she'd learned her lesson to appreciate furs (and girls); slavery's just wrong. But then, the stories were based on a roleplaying game; the girl playing sextoy chose to be without choice. The paradoxes of sex...
- The dream echoes Skunkaholic's bondage-game, but also my life last year. I was the boytoy of a highly dominant critter with a strong male side--Cheryl. But the echo's inexact. The dream has a child, not an adult human; but not rape/slavery, just seduction. And despite Cheryl's greater experience and force of character, she saw herself as a child that big bad me seduced. So how do the dream, Skunkaholic's tales, and our real affair compare, morally?
- Squirrel: probably a pun on "squirrely"--American slang for silly. Which all three of us certainly were. Are.
- The dream fuses the complaints of my two exes!
- Emily felt I ignored her need to see herself as a guy in a girl's body. Felt I tried, essentially, to corrupt or pervert her into (drum roll) heterosexuality! Oops.
(If you're reading this, Em, I regret that I let you down--no question I fail to see you as a guy. (Balanced yes, guy no.) But what of all the other issues we share, and spent two years discussing? Species, brains, creativity (music AND art AND writing), ESP and roaming the multiverse... Go ahead and put all those on hold and hare off (pardon my lapinism) after gender alienation alone as your Grail! Good luck on that.)
- Cheryl says I raped her inner child. Given that she's multiple, that's a less absurd charge than it sounds. But also more testable--that personality, Serena, could speak for herself. She didn't feel raped. It's the supposedly adult persona that sees abusers all round her.
(If you're reading this, Serena the inner child, I think you're the central soul, the natural coordinator of all the other parts. Cheryl talks like you're incompetent, over-trusting. Half-truth! She's paranoid. Caution has its uses, but she overdoes it. You have to rein her in; no one else can. Not just happiness at stake! Sanity.)
- So am I a coward as Cheryl's letter said? The dream doesn't know--or care. It says what I am is... absurd. The games we three indulged in--over sex, art, ESP, gender, even species--are too bizarre to judge morally. Comedically, yes...
- ACTION: Quit censoring my dream-poems and stories. Ignore Emily's and Cheryl's judgments. Ignore your own judgmentalism too. Pointless. Three weirdos dove into a pool of crazy experiments and it blew up--biiiiig surprise! A year later, Em's busy on other stuff; Cheryl's still bitterly obsessing on it. And me? I may try to make art out of it, but this dream convinces me it's impossible to moralize, even in the limited sense of finding life-lessons.
So goodbye to you all: Em, Maddie, Cheryl/Serena and all your alts. I'm your past now, and you are my past. I set you free. Set me free.
LISTS AND LINKS:
creative process -
sex in general -
gay men -
mustelids: skunks, ermines, weasels, otters -
rodents: squirrels, rats, mice -
sexy creatures (or at least they wish, Pepe!) -
dream humor -
romantic advice -
triangles and trios -
prodigies and the gifted -
Only in San Francisco - dreams by
breakups and exes -
letting go - dreamt the same night:
The White Deer Re-Enacted and
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