I know what you’re thinking. People can’t propel themselves into the air by excreting feces. And, yes, I suppose you’re right. In fact, now that I think about it in the light of day, it does sound pretty ludicrous. But try telling that to my subconscious.
The dream starts harmless enough, I suppose. I’m watching an old ‘70s sitcom à la The Partridge Family and there’s this teenage actor wearing a god-awful purple velvet pullover and straw-coloured corduroys sitting on the living room couch trying to make-out with his girlfriend who, by the way, is sporting an honest-to-goodness mushroom cut. While the kissing degrades into eager teenage tongues trying to finagle each other – that would never have flown on real ‘70s television – I’m watching this through the wonders of Technicolor and thinking, “they look identical!” In any case, the kid’s not getting too far with his advances because all his girlfriend can think about is how she’s going to skip school the next day. (Kids! Am I right?)
The dream skips ahead to the next day and, thanks to the wonders of Dream Logic, I’m now part of the show – an under-appreciated crew member, I’m sure – and I’m watching the girlfriend, this mushroom-cut-wearing-just-been-tongue-kissed-teen-actor, literally flying through the air as part of a half-baked, I Love Lucy-esque plan to escape school. Now, there are two things that you need to know about how she’s accomplishing this remarkable feat of anti-gravity propulsion. One, she’s being held up by wires. (It’s TV magic!) Two, her ingenious plan to fly out of a second storey window involves excreting a line of feces so long and so powerful that it is thrusting her at least 10 feet into the air and, boy, is she amazed at the results.
So, I’m watching this scene, like some deranged, deleted scene from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and a few questions are going through my mind (and I’m sure a few are going through yours as well). For the most part, however, I’m just thinking… that poo isn’t coming out that fast. And then I chalk it up to cheesy ‘70s special effects and the director yells, “Cut!”
Analysis: My fixation with the format of the ‘70s sitcom is clearly a repressed yearning for the rose-tinged nostalgia of an earlier time, one characterized by my repressed teenage desires and a mourning for juvenile melodrama normally resolved within the 22 minutes of the average sitcom.
The purple velvet and corduroys, in particular, are evidence of a longing to break free of the limitations of today’s fashion conventions, and the mushroom cut is, I regretfully admit, a call for help from my childhood self who sported such a look from the ages of 6 to 12.
The fact that the characters look identical is a reflection of my subconscious belief that, in the end, we are each our own greatest companion and soul mate. It may also have something to do with that time I woke up kissing my mirror.
Breaking the fourth-wall barrier between watching the television show and being a part of it shows a desire to stop observing life from the sidelines and to play a larger role in my life’s creation and execution. Having manifested as a crew member, I suspect a role in politics may be just the thing for me.
And, finally, the flying feces. This, clearly, is the combined result of a prolonged escapist desire sustained throughout the rest of the dream, a newly discovered appreciation for the wonders and problem-solving capabilities of the human body and an excruciating, 72-hour bout of constipation.
[Side note: the bout was, upon wakening, resolved.]