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Strange Dream

August 28, 2019

My 25 year high school class reunion is coming up next month, and I don’t see a practical way to go without selling mutual fund shares and significantly reducing my monthly income, perhaps beyond what I need each month to pay for storage–money was particularly tight this past month, and yet strangers on Facebook are attacking me as a miser for not spending my inheritance on housing as haphazardly as I did after Dad passed away, leading to my homelessness when I was unable to find a living wage job for which I was allowed to interview, let alone be offered. They seem to want me to behave like a lottery winnerr who goes broke after only a few years, my mother’s dying wish that I not burn through it be damned.

The night before last I dreamed some kind of reunion celebration was about to begin in what looked like the Northview Middle School student center, albeit a bit off, as dreams often will. I walked up both the main stair case and the one at the left of the entrance, which, at least when I was there, were where most of the 6th grade classes were on the first floor and where most of the seventh grade classes were on the second floor (the other side on the second floor was mostly eighth grade, but also science and more specialized classes, such as art and industrial arts on the first. I had had a summer school algebra class there in high school after the remodeling, so I at least do know how it looked after I left.

I just woke from a bizarre dream. I had driven a black convertible onto a somewhat rearranged version of the North Central High School campus (which is contiguous with the Northview campus, which is contiguous with what was my parents’ yard before it was sold). I was near the ballfields, which in the dream seemed to be east of the school building rather than south as in real life had been singing some opera thinking no one was around and paging through a catalog of film score CDs (as I was online yesterday when Screen Archives alerted me to a 50% off sale). I noticed a peculiarity that Monkey Shines was attributed to a Vincent I. Moretti rather than to David Shire (interesting that it would be one of the few name composers I’ve met in real life). It was around this point that I, previously thinking I was alone, noticed a couple on a bench, the young woman lying with her head in the lap of a young man, hoping that they had had a good laugh at my expense thinking I was alone. Soon the man, young with a blond mop top and round John Lennon glasses got was at the back of my car and scratching it along the side with a hook.

I panicked at the reversal, and soon the man was giving a big speech in front of my car. One of his lines was that singing about battles to him was “like singing about a gambit to a queen.” I wasn’t sure I understood that line and still don’t after checking checking the dictionary definition of “gambit,” but it came across as a line he had prepared for such a moment. He then stabbed himself in the chest and considered speechifying, horrific, but at least relief that it wasn’t my life he was planning to take, and continuing his speech until he no longer had the strength, the rest of which I don’t remember, and woke up soon after, eyes burning because I had again fallen asleep with my contact lenses in. and otherwise unprepared to go to sleep. Still, it came across to me as material worth developing for a short story if I could make the suicide a more interesting character.

It may have been brought on by the talk of suicide my roommate at the shelter has been doing, mostly on the phone with his friend, but a bit with me after I mocked shelter staff doing a “wellness check” as making sure no one was trying to commit suicide, which he dismissed as impossible in the rooms we have. He has mused with his friend about wanting to kill someone so that the state will give him the needle he has been refused in the past, noting that he had previously botched a suicide attempt. Some people on Facebook told me to contact the National Suicide Prevention Line, but all they did was tell me to tell shelter staff, which I nearly did when signing for my bed that night, but then saw him in the hall headed toward the office, and was glad that I hadn’t.

  1. Johnny permalink

    It would be weird for you to leave the homeless shelter to go to Indianapolis in order to attend a high school reunion, and then come back to New York to resume living in the homeless shelter. Like, most people who are “homeless” don’t go somewhere else and then return…what is there to return to, since you by definition have no “home”? Is NYC your “home” for any other reason than you like the generous welfare system here?

    • Yes, it would be weird. It’s what I did when my mom passed away, but I had to provide the death certificate to get my bed held for three days, which would not happen for a reunion. It’s my home in the sense that I have lived here for sixteen years. I rent storage units in both Indianapolis and Ridgefield, NJ, but you can’t live in a storage unit, at least no legally, and mine don’t have enough room. My bed is standing on end in the Ridgefield unit. I want to move out of both of them when there is a practical way to do so, which starts with getting steady employment with decent pay. Doing that with only the lump sum from the sale of mom’s house seems foolish.

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