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Indomitable Spirit

This is a near verbatim re-telling of a lucid dream sequence I awoke from this morning...

Queue the X-Files music.

It was a cold but sunny mid-winter’s Sunday morning. The unclouded sky was blue and the ice crystals sparkled in the snow like a blanket of diamonds. I stood in my kitchen with my back to the sink’s window and faced the white Amana refrigerator. I was enjoying a freshly brewed cup of coffee, lots of heavy cream, lots of sugar, just the way I like it. The kids had just finished eating breakfast and were now loading the dishwasher.

And then it began...

The refrigerator door swung open and a small, circular uncovered, one cup capacity Rubbermaid container, moved itself from the fridge’s middle shelf to the kitchen island that was between us. It hovered for a moment before landing softly on the counter. The heavy refrigerator door then swung shut.

If you saw the War of the Worlds re-make starring Tom Cruise, then you know the sound. It’s an eerily loud horn blast the alien invader’s tripod human abduction machines used to communicate. It’s a low, air-vibrating single note that mimics a baritone lighthouse warning. That same sounding blast came from the Rubbermaid container, rattling the wine glasses and china in the nearby cabinet. The kids stopped loading the dishes and clung to my side.

Then, there was a deafening silence, and it painfully reverberated inside my ears.

Everything now moved in slow motion stun and disbelief. I was mesmerized, almost as if I was in a paralyzed, observing trance. Only my eyes could move and they attempted to identify the suspicious contents of that container.

Inside the formed plastic appeared to be leftover steel cut oats from the day before. There was maybe a third of a cup, possibly too much has been cooked. I don’t recall. Not enough remained for a full breakfast meal, but enough to augment an egg or piece of toast, complimented by lots of fresh fruit on the side.

Steam began to rise from the container and the oats began to bubble like they were being heated in a microwave oven. As more steam billowed and the healthy meal now boiled, each cooked oat exploded like popcorn. But there was no sound, only released hot air and expansion. When it was done, the steaming, globular mass looked like a large, pasty, off-white brain had formed. It was anchored in the Rubbermaid container but kept perfect balance hovering above it. We then heard that horrific horn blast again.

For the next several moments, it just looked at us, and we, at it. I felt like it was assessing, wondering who or what we were. It reminded me of the birth of my daughter. When her eyes first opened in the delivery room, her expression was clear to all of us. It said, “What the hell are you all looking at?”

During that birthing memory flashback, somehow the steaming brain-shaped mass of cooked oatmeal turned into a hovering VCR. Seriously. It morphed from a gooey, globular, leftover mess into a flat silver metal box that had lost its black protective cover. The VCR tape door faced us, again making me feel like it was assessing us like an enemy or prey, having readied its laser weapons, to no longer stun, but set to vaporize me and my family.

The ominous floating VCR carefully moved towards us, slowly rising as it approached, with the front side slightly tilted downward with the back, cable input side raised. Oddly, as if all of this wasn't odd enough, its backside gently moved back and forth as if it was wagging. This behavior reminded me of a playful dog, assuming a submissive position, front paws splayed forward, head low, butt high, and manically wagging its ass and tail, begging its focus for attention.

Overcoming my fear, I took the unorthodox approach and cautiously moved past this floating possessed home entertainment device and walked to the back entrance of our home. It followed close behind. I worried that one false move by me and I’d feel the scorch of linear heat penetrate my body before I dropped to my smoldering death. So, I moved with that understanding.

I slowly opened the back door, then pushed opened the screen door and cautiously coaxed the shivering VCR outside. It was cold and we both felt the blast of the Arctic air. I sensed more than reluctance from this creature; it was trepidation.

“Come on, Molly. Outside,” I said. “Go potty.”

The hesitant VCR needed a gentle push, so I reached up and nudged it on its backside. Once it was begrudgingly on the deck, I closed both doors and watched in amusing frustration from the warmth of my home. Instead of moving off of the deck and onto the snow-covered grass, the VCR passive-aggressively peed on our frozen back entrance Welcome Home mat.


How leftover oatmeal turned into a steaming cerebral mass, then into a malevolent hovering VCR, and finally into the indomitable spirit of one of my beloved passed puppies, is way, way beyond me.

I’m still looking for symbolism and meaning in this dream, but I fear the combination of barbecue-flavored sunflower seeds, coconut granola in whole fat milk, three IKEA Swedish meatballs with gravy, a peanut butter cookie, okay, two, but don’t tell my kids I ate their cookies, and the leftover Coca-Cola from the vanilla ice cream floats we had after dinner, immediately following my Monopoly victory over my two head cold-stricken children, contributed to this bizarre scenario in some manner.

Snacking before bed is bad. Snaking before bed while binge-watching X-Files episodes is worse. But I had to do both. That damn Netflix will discontinue offering the X-Files as of October first. I’m going to miss Scully, Mulder, Skinner and the rest of their wittily cavorting gang, but my cuddly puppies with never let me forget them.

Queue again the X-Files music... And slowly fade to black. Roll credits.

Ping Note: The cover picture is not of my dog, but that puppy's disgruntled side glance captures my dog's demeanor. It's absolutely precious.


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