"Dreaming permits each and every one of us to be quietly and safely insane every night of our lives." --William Dement

v i v i d   d r e a m s
September 8, 2002
In which I try to direct a musical, then watch a building get demolished, not once...but twice.

June 10, 2002
In which I find myself competing with an unidentified black woman to see who is prettiest.

May 5, 2002
In which I discover an entire national park made of Legos only moments before finding out about a tragic turn in Glenn Danzig's life.

April 3, 2002
In which the late Dudley Moore turns out to have a side business as a building imploder.

a dream I had the morning of December 18, 2005

So, I'm watching the screening of a movie in an intimate theater, a small screening room.

The film is a dramatic behind-the-scenes peek into the life of a female automobile executive as she faces adversity. It's a little bit like Tucker only starring Kirstie Alley, who luckily for this role doesn't have her usual annoying voice. She has a new prototype car that she believes in but the Powers That Be don't want to succeed for some reason. There's intrigue and corporate sabotage. She disguises the prototype car like a junker and sends it out "undercover" where the driver of the car comes back with videotape footage of competing cars that would exonerate her! (It's unclear exactly how that would work.) But her victory is short-lived as her competitors challenge the footage, claiming it was doctored. Basically, calling her a liar.

Sometime during the movie, I realize I'm watching the movie with a bunch of people I know, a bunch of guys I work with at NBC. And it occurs to me that this is part of my bachelor party -- seeing this private screening of this movie.

Near the climax of the movie, I see that my friend Tuc Watkins has a small role, and I'm really excited about it, not only because this movie seems pretty awesome, but also because he's finally getting a chance to show himself as a comic actor. Tuc is normally cast in "handsome guy" roles, because he?s so darn handsome. But in this movie he gets to be the comedy go-to guy.

In a scene near the end of the movie, Tuc is sitting with the lead character and two other people watching a film (so I'm dreaming of watching a movie about people who are watching a movie), and there's this dramatic moment when the film ends and Tuc takes a deep breath like he's going to say something. And I have enough time to think to myself, "I can't wait to hear what Tuc has to say, because I bet it'll be funny." I can tell this because of the look on his face.

But the sound goes out in the movie and the lights come up in the screening room -- even though the movie continues to play. It seems my bachelor party friends have gathered in the projection booth, which is just a raised platform at the back of the theater that looks more like where you'd put a soundboard for a rock show. They've interrupted the movie to make an announcement to me -- I'm the only other person in the theater.

"After much consideration and discussion, we've decided that your new nickname should be A LA MODE. Or just MODE."

And everyone laughs and cheers.

We'd go back to watching the film, but by this time it's over. So we leave the theater, which, as it turns out, is in a mall, which seems to be closing, as if this is a Sunday at 5 p.m. We decide to go to our separate cars. I follow Ron Hayes (my actual boss at NBC) to a store that's closing and ask him: "Do you know if they validate?"

He says no they don't and he and Matt Jacoby (another actual NBC co-worker) head up a flight of stairs to go to the parking lot. But I can't follow them, because I remember that I parked on the complete other side of the parking structure. I tell Ron and Matt that I'll meet them there -- wherever there happens to be. And I start running.

I'm running because it's a long distance to the other side of the mall, and also because I seem to be the last person in the mall and it's closing. And I sure don't want to be trapped inside. As I'm running, I end up in a part of the mall that looks like the lobby of a fancy hotel. And it's totally empty, except for a handful of people standing around the concierge desk. The concierge shouts at me to come over, and I feel like I may be in trouble, since I'm running through the lobby of this fancy hotel.

So I slow down and stop at his desk.

"Do you have an ID with you?"

"Yes," I say, pulling out my wallet.

"Good. Do you have a scheduler?"

I look at him with a little bit of a puzzled look. And then I throw a glance to the blonde woman closest to me. "A scheduler?"

The blond woman says, "You know, like iCal." A reference to the Apple calendar function.

"Um, no," I say, looking back at the concierge.

"That's OK," he says and he draws a little diagram on a napkin. "Let's say you have these dates written on your calendar, and you need to move everything over a day or two or even three."

"Wait," I say, "is this just a sales pitch? You stopped me for a sales pitch?"

The concierge and everyone else just stare at me.

"I'm late! I'm in a hurry!" And I run off, annoyed.

© 2005 Jeff Drake