Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Amateur Dream Analysis

DREAM: I'm at my birthday party, being thrown at (of all places) the home of my friend Brent's parents.  It's a big backyard BBQ, half the people there seem to be wearing Hawaiian shirts, and everyone is in good spirits.  Brent is there with his wife Natalie, who I've only met a few times.  Two of the other guests are my friend Heather and her husband Will; Heather who I've known since high school and Will who I've also gotten to know quite well over the last couple of years.

Several guests at this party don't know each other, so I'm making the rounds for introductions.  One such introduction is Brent/Natalie and Heather/Will, who all shake hands and exchange pleasantries.  As the party goes on, it becomes apparent that the four are quite friendly with each other, and Brent and Heather in particular are VERY friendly with each other, chatting quite animatedly. 

Anyway, fast-forward to a few weeks later, so at least it feels like a few weeks later within my dream.  I'm checking into a motel on the outskirts of Toronto, as I can see the CN Tower in the distance.  As I'm outside my room getting ice, who should I see but Brent and Heather leaving one of the rooms, still making out with each other as they're walking through the door.  I drop my ice bucket in shock --- amusingly, the dream actually went slo-mo at this point, so my bucket fell a la Chazz Palmintieri's coffee cup in the final scenes of Usual Suspects.  I go up to the couple and am all, WTF?  They're shocked to see me, and they ashamedly admit they're having an affair.  They're head over heels for each other.  I tell them they absolutely need to tell their spouses and they agree, saying it was just a matter of time.

Fast-forward again to a living room.  Both couples are there, plus me.  (Awk-ward!)  Brent and Heather break the news.  Natalie takes it extremely well, surprisingly well; her reaction is literally, "Awww, you two are in love?  That's adorable.  I give you all my best!  Can't fight true love!"  Will is also pretty cool with the idea, though he is determined to find out some minor details.  For instance, he asks them what time they checked out of the hotel, and when he's told the answer is 5:13 PM, Will says "Aha!" and writes it down in a little notebook.  Then I woke up.

First of all, "Brent, Natalie, Heather and Will" are all actual people I know, but these aren't their real names.  No reason getting into public embarrassment just for the sake of one of my goofy dreams and even-more-goofy dream analyses.  While I have no problem publicly name-dropping, for instance, my buddy Trevor in my famous dream our future daughters getting married, a dream like one is fraught with a bit more social peril.  I don't want to publish this post and, five minutes later, receive "WTF, dude?" messages from Heather, Will and Brent.  (Natalie actually isn't a Facebook friend of mine, I just realized.  I should add her….hmm, on second thought, maybe I should wait a few weeks down the road so I don't give away her identity.)  

It should be said that the two couples are, to my knowledge, completely happy and only in love with each other.  Knowing Heather and Brent for a while, I can safely state that neither is the type to cheat on their spouses.  Lord knows why this particular scenario popped into my subconscious.  Do I secretly think that Heather and Brent would really hit it off and be a great couple if they ever met?  Should I now go out of my way to make sure the two of them never meet at any actual birthday parties or social events in the future?  Or am I going about this the wrong way?  Is this dream merely a premonition that they ARE perfect for each other and I really should be going out of my way to set the two of them up, current matrimonial status be damned?  What a dilemma.  Jeremy Piven never faced these kinds of problems as Cupid.

I suspect this sort of infidelity-fuelled dream may have been inspired by my recent viewing of "Take This Waltz," which I'll write more about in an upcoming post.  As in that film and in this dream, there aren't any real villains in this cheating scenario.  As Natalie put it, you can't fight true love --- any type of cheating sucks, but I suppose it somewhat lessens the blow if the cheaters are legitimately and truly in love with each other.

Look at how forthright and honest I am in this dream!  I instantly pull the yellow card on Brent and Heather and even follow up by being the super-awkward fifth wheel at the truth-telling meeting.  From a dramatic standpoint, it would've been much more interesting had Brent & Heather called my bluff.  I'd like to think that if this happened in real life, I would have the character to actually take it upon myself to (in all likelihood) end two marriages by telling Natalie and Will, but who knows if that's actually a 'character' call.  Maybe the proper thing to do would be to not actually reveal things myself, but simply to keep brow-beating Brent & Heather to do it themselves.  I think most people would agree that this would actually be the best course of action if your friend is cheating but you don't know the spouse all that well --- it seems cold, but really, the cuckolded spouse will feel even worse if confronted with the truth by a virtual stranger.  Since I know Will pretty well by now and consider him a friend, however, keeping quiet about the affair would be a dick move.  If Heather did tell Will and was like, "Oh by the way, Mark knew this whole time," Will would surely be quite pissed and that'd be the end of that friendship.  Telling Natalie, however, would surely cost me Brent's friendship. 

Some might argue that one might not want the friendship of someone who would put their pal in that sort of terrible "don't tell my wife I'm cheating" situation to begin with, but still, imagine one of your good friends did this.  Would you just outright blow the whistle on their affair, or would you just suffer in complicity?  It's a tough moral conundrum. 

As a sign of what good friends Brent and I are, apparently his parents threw me a birthday party?  Possibly luau-themed?  That was a weird twist.  I've met Brent's parents MAYBE once in my life, and now that I think about it, I think I've just met his dad.  His backyard is, admittedly, a pretty bitching party setting --- big wide-open yard with levels, a wooden deck, small koi pond and a big maple tree.  Little did Mr. and Mrs. Brent know that their generosity in giving up their house to their son's friend's birthday would result in their son's marriage falling apart. 

Maybe Brent's 'rents were just doing me a favour since, in some sense, I've fallen on hard times and have to stay in a motel.  I'm not sure why I'd be spending time in one of the GTA's finer motels since, y'know, I live in Toronto.  Why wouldn't I just be at my house?  I just signed a new lease, so if my dreams are indeed turning into premonitions, this isn't a good sign.  I feel like checking right now to make sure the oven is turned off.  Maybe I'm just temporarily in this motel while our house is being, I dunno, sprayed for insects or something.  (And let's hope it's legitimate exterminators and not a front for a New Mexico drug kingpin.)

The reactions of Natalie and Will are quite interesting.  As mentioned, I don't know Natalie all that well, but I can pretty much guarantee that if Brent actually did cheat on her in real life, she would take it much harder than she does in my dream, where she was so saccharinely accepting of the situation that, on paper, it reads like she's just being really sarcastic.  Part of me thinks that if you were cheating on your wife, confessed to her and she responded so positively, it would almost be a red flag.  You might be being set up in some kind of film noir con scenario.  Or, she's been sleeping around herself and is relived to be out of the marriage herself, which is one of those dumb situations where Brent would no doubt feel aggrieved even though he's getting what he wanted.  The male ego is a fragile thing.  As for Will, the thought of him caught up on completely unimportant details is hilarious and very in-character for him.  I'd share a couple of personal anecdotes to back this up but hey, identity shield.  I'll just keep it to myself as an amusing in-joke.

One thing this dream has dead-on….I do like ice.  It's nice.  If David Caruso was writing this dream, he would've had me run into Heather & Brent actually at the ice machine.  Then I would've put on sunglasses and said "Ice….to see you."  YEAHHHHHH

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