what dreams may come

I’m a hard sleeper.

Nothing can, nothing will, wake me up. Construction, gun shots, home invasions, house fires, nuclear holocausts…nothing.

So I get to have incredible dreams. Last night, for example, I dreamt that I was a football player buried deep down the depth chart. The team boarded a plane en route to a game with the pilot both coked up and drunk. The pilot thought it would be cool to do a barrel roll in a passenger plane which caused some concern. I brushed it off and took a nap. When I awoke, the plane had to make an emergency landing onto a road but ended up crashing into an apartment building. No one was killed,miraculously, and the people in the building didn’t think anything unusual about it because it was in Mississippi and apparently things like that happen all the time. Nevertheless, one player thought this was the perfect opportunity to exact revenge…for whatever reasons…on the head coach and a few other players. So it was up to me, some nobody, to save the team.

Once when that was done, I had to book a flight home but chose to fly to London, England instead. The price came to $20,000 and I didn’t have the money. Then the dream ended.

There were dreams on the periphery, one which includes me fighting a rabbit in Monument Valley and sending it to a highly mechanized version of hell.

I guess dreams are just a hodgepodge of shit stored in our heads and when we sleep, our brains randomly throw things together which we later attempt to make sense of (or in my case, project a story onto). Does it ever mean anything? Probably not.

At least not most of the time.

But I do have recurring dreams. Not dreams where the exact same things happen, but they share similar themes, people, places, etc. I suppose that there are shreds of truth in these kinds of dreams: a revelation of regret, dread, loss, and so on.

I find the subject of dreams fascinating. It reveals the chaos that exists in our own minds. Even the purest of people will experience a gruesome nightmare. Despite their outward practices in real life, even in their minds they will produce true horror. That emanates completely from them. We try to project some sense onto our dreams, but the fact is that there isn’t any whatsoever.

We do the same thing to our reality.

😎Midsommar 😎

I like to talk about movies that people usually know but have somewhat forgotten about.

That being said, Midsommar is relatively recent and probably still discussed.

Oh well 🤷‍♂️

I’m not really a horror fan, so I haven’t seen Hereditary, Ari Aster’s other film. But Midsommar caught my attention because someone mentioned that it was a horror film that lacked any of the tropes found in such movies.

People aren’t as big of a fan of Midsommar as they are of Hereditary. Was Hereditary really that good?

Many have said that the subtext of this movie is dissolution of the relationship between the two leads. If that was the case, then I hardly noticed (or cared). For me, what was terrifying about the movie was how it kinda reminded me of Salo: Or the 120 Days of Sodom, albeit far more emotionally engaging. In fact, if Midsommer is a “horror” film, then Salo is as well.

But Aster uses the “horror” elements wisely. Much of the film is actually pleasant to look at: pleasant locations, pleasant faces. Naturally, this pleasantness is used to lower your guard.

Except for one dream sequence, all of the horror takes place during the day. The most noted example is the suicide scene with the two elderly people. If you watch a lot of movies, you’ve definitely seen gorier shit, but this one hits different. It’s a beautiful scene juxtaposed against two old people getting their faces smashed in. Additionally, for the two groups present for this ritual, one finds the scene beautiful while the other is utterly horrified.

And it happens relatively late in the film, long after you get adapted to the tone. Usually horror films do something like that early, just to tell the audience what it’s capable of.

Many have discussed why this movie is terrifying, and none of it works as an explanation for me. The most common is “it’s an American perspective on a foreign culture and how we find them terrifying “ blah blah blah. That never once occurred to me. What I found terrifying is the passiveness of the characters and the bullshit myths that the cult had to justify itself.

And the film does call bullshit on it (some guy argued that the film has a neutral take on the cult, which is partly why some find it scary. But that’s definitely not true).

Case in point is in the euthanasia scene, after the old man jumps off the cliff, breaks his leg, and lays there in pain. After the scene, the male lead tries to justify it by saying something like the “community might find our methods of elderly care barbaric”, but that old man met a truly barbaric end (his face later gets smashed in). I’d take a nursing home any day of the week.

The other example is at the end when the temple gets set on fire. Two members of the cult volunteer for the burning and are given a drug so that they won’t feel the pain of burning. However, one guy watches his friend, the last image he’ll ever see, scream in horror as he burns alive! All the drugs and nonsense clearly did him no good.

So to me, this film was kinda a commentary on the cult mindset and how people can be persuaded to do unusual things in the name of nonsense (and a lot of drugs). OR how people use these rituals to mask truly horrific things. That explains Florence Pugh’s smile at the end: she was an emotionally unbalanced person that’s suddenly found her place.

To me, the most terrifying thing was the brief moment when the male lead opens his eyes and sees a smiling face telling him that he is drugged, can’t move, can’t talk, and that’s that. Bye!

But what this film also does effectively is give you a solid sense of geography. You get used to the nice setting and that’s when bad things start happening. It plays out like a dream that suddenly turns into a helpless nightmare. Just as in a dream, the actors don’t know what’s going on but they play along nonetheless.

Ideology works the same way.

Masking the Horror

My buddy Randy got really drunk and started watching 9/11 videos.

“Never forget”, he told me.

“How could I?” I replied. “A bunch of people got trapped above the site of impact on the Twin Towers and either suffocated or leaped to their deaths. Can’t think of a worse way to go, ya know? Having to chose between choking on fumes or falling hundreds of feet to your gruesome death.”

But Randy forgot. And that’s kinda the point behind the “Never Forget” sloganing and the virtue signaling behind saying it, right?

The unfortunate thing about honoring and mythologizing tragedies is that it helps mask over the absolute horror behind such events. This is true for not just 9/11, but pick any war. I’m sure that soldier was really concerned about getting a posthumous bronze star after getting his legs blown off and bayoneted.

Sure, I can say that this due to some conspiracy from the government to feed us propaganda and keep their war machine fueled, which is true. But the fact is that it is much easier to focus on the mythos, revenge fantasies, and conspiracies regarding tragedy rather than on the tragedy itself.

To do so means recognizing that death is ever present. It can strike with no warning, no rhyme or reason. The universe itself is completely indifferent to our condition. In fact, it seemingly despises us. So love today, laugh when you can, because it can all be gone in an instant.

Anyways, started taking viagra today. They caused me to pass out in the Walmart bathroom, but at least they gave me a boner. Just can’t go back to Walmart anymore. 😩