Location, Portlandish (everyone refers to it as Portland, but it looks nothing like Portland), Nighttime.
Amanda Palmer is playing surrogate mother to the as yet unborn child of my sister Melinda A. In a plot twist, I had provided the sperm for this offspring.
At the beginning of the dream both Amanda and Melinda want me actively involved in the birth of the child. I am given a donor father designator (called “DIVO” for some reason) and as far back into the dream as I can recall, I am running between the hotel I am staying at (all mirrors, glass, neon and red lacquer) and several restaurants trying to figure out where the child birthing celebratory group and I are going to have dinner to celebrate the child’s arrival. After much consideration, I decide on someplace that serves breakfast 24 hours a day as a winning compromise that will (probably) keep everyone happy.
Having reached this decision, I check out a local used bookstore that is very cavernous and basementy.
[This is not Powell’s books. As I said, Portlandish]
The bookstore has very large sections based around Area 51 cover-ups and government/global/Illuminati conspiracies. I overhear a discussion in the neighboring aisle that when the bookstore gets bombed (not “if” but “when”) there is a security countermeasure involving black plastic netting that will be released at every entry point and every doorway within the store. The netting is sized as such that it will indicate what type of bomb was used outside the store. If the rubble is of a small enough size to pass through the netting, there is a higher probability that poison gas or radiation was part of the bomb. If the chunks are too large to pass through the netting, then a larger chance that the explosive device was strictly explosive material like dynamite or C-4, and less risk of poison and radiation. I see the netting. The netting holes are about 3 inches square.
I make it a point to get out of the bookstore as quickly as possible.
I get a message on my phone from Amanda. She has decided that she does NOT want me to be directly involved in the birthing process. I try to get a message to my sister to confirm that this is her wish as well before making a final call on whether or not to be there… but I am having trouble finding my sister.
I run across Amanda again, who is performing a blitzkrieg performance just down the street from the bookstore. She looks very pregnant. In the audience, I see Matthew McConaughey, and I have the sense that he is going to be the official father of the child. Though I am unsure whether the father is going to be McConaughey or merely played by McConaughey as a performance piece. Amanda sees me but makes an exaggerated set of gestures to let me know that she is intentionally ignoring me and wishes me to stay away.
Matthew McConaughey steps up and in a terse whispered drawl suggests that I take a trip, perhaps to the movies.
McConaughey is kind of a loose thread in this whole arrangement. I am not sure whether or not he is staying in the hotel with me, or if he has set up residence in my sister’s house. I think he is set up in my sister’s house, so a next step is figuring out whether I need to keep renting a double room at the hotel or make other arrangements for myself. Further complicated by the fact that both Amanda and McConaughey do not want me around, and I still have not been able to talk to my sister about what she wants.
I head to the movie theater, and am considering the broad menu of features when a young Japanese person with a bike rides up and offers me a ride through the “tourist hot spots of Portland.” His bike features an upended cylinder made of plywood which is mounted to the front. I am to sit within this cylinder, much like a Japanese soaking tub. As I am not really in the mood for a movie, I agree to the ride.
The bike ride is beautiful. We leave the city and head into suburbs.
Seemingly at random my pilot stops in the middle of an alley lined with tall and grey plywood fences on either side. He opens a gate and there is a yard sale set up, with several tables of brick a brac, stereo equipment and books. I wait for him as he purchases a rather large stack of Japanese crossword puzzles, which he tells me are for his mother. He stashes these in a compartment below my seat.
The tour resumes. From the suburbs, we ride into the country. There is a high school completely devoted to the principles of Star Trek. A series of monuments that look like a cross between the production design of the video game Brütal Legend and the otherworldly World War II monuments commissioned by Yugoslavian president Josip Broz Tito. The statuary is old, covered in signs of rot or moss, organic looking, like these things were not sculpted but rather were grown from the earth, and dramatically underlit – because it is nighttime.
I resolve that after I get back to the hotel I am grabbing my camera and going out again to take photographs of everything, even if it takes all night.
We head over a bridge and we are back on the outskirts of town. I see my hotel.
There is a giant, red, party bus, which goes from points unknown to my hotel. The bus is pulling into the hotel parking lot at the same time as my Japanese pilot with the bike gets there. I see a short procession of people in Halloween costumes departing from the bus. There is a Joey Ramone, a burlesque dancer wearing sheer leaving-nothing-to-the-imagination gypsy pants and a couple costumes I do not recognize. Last to get off the bus is Amanda Palmer, who is no longer Amanda Palmer but has turned into Lorelai Gilmore as portrayed by the actress Lauren Graham on the television show ‘Gilmore Girls’. While she is the same person in a different body (ah, dream logic), she is no longer pregnant and no longer seems to object to my presence.
Lorelai-that-was-Amanda and I engage in trademark flirty/funny Lorelai Gilmore banter on the way to the hotel lobby. I tell her about the monuments and invite her to come with me to photograph them all. She seems interested…
I am jarred awake by a neighbor’s dog barking, and my dog responding in kind a foot away from my ear.
This dream write up is dedicated to Neil Gaiman.
For those interested, Brütal Legend was developed by Double Fine Entertainment. More information on the Word War 2 monuments/photographer Jan Kempenaers can be gleaned through http://www.jankempenaers.info/publications/5/
Amanda Palmer Image grabbed from Rolling Stone
Matthew McConaughey image capture from those everywhere Lincon commercials
Lorelei Gilmore/Lauren Graham image grabbed from fanpop