Talking to myself onscreen, pressing pause, a grey midwinter day
Hard Drive (LCARS) Revue 1: trust, truth, logic, and a bit of nonsense

Starting out, starting over, 16 years on

A. This post is mostly about uninteresting things, but I needed to get it all down, and maybe it's good for something for you, as well. Mostly, future posts will be only about half this long, or less, and I have an idea that I should strive to make them entertaining.

I was organizing various files and computer elements in recognition that Google Plus is ending after nearly 8 years, because you were too lazy to use anything but Facebook or Tumblr by 2011, unless you’re one of my Google Plus friends, in which case you weren't, but know just what I’m saying, and anyway, I decided it was time to freshen the blogs.

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I used them less, and less as I wanted to because of G+, and that’s my only real negative point about it, other than how people treated it who weren’t there every day enjoying it. There are two blog sites, and each one has a subblog. (When I first got them, there were reasons for that, too dull to go into.)

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So I have the main blog which is currently just a link page, more on that in a sec, and the poetry/writing page. Then I have the actual main blog where I write this stuff, and this has a subpage for talking about cooking and sewing and such things, which I hope to update more going forward.

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The main blog had posts going back to 2003, from when I used Dreamweaver and uploaded everything to an FTP server. Then I had Live Journal, Blogger, Vox, and finally Typepad. So the older posts were not all formatted well, and some of the images were lost, but I kept it all as a sort of History of Ridiculous Me.

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In 2015 I wanted a fresh start, so I moved over to the second main page, but kept the first one as an archive. 

It’s not fine literature. Some of it is rather stupid. But I like looking back at Younger Me and saying, aw, you. And some of it is rather good, though I do say so myself. Better still, sometimes I was even funny, before life got to weighing me down so much. At least, I amused me, and that was fine.

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I tend to pick up on certain kinds of things before they become trendy, and the old blog was a chaotic catalog of some of that, as well. But now here I am, starting over, a far different person in some ways at 53 than 37. Gosh, being in your late 30s is grand. Don’t take that for granted. Anyway, so now I’m going to switch to a new scene for a few minutes and tell Angela about the fire dreams, since I can’t just send her a link to what I thought was a hilarious denouement of a lifelong mystery. Skip way down to C. if you just want this to end swiftly.

 

B. I dreamed of fire as a child, nearly every night sometimes, with occasional rests, from ages…3 or 4 or 5, to 17. Less frequently after that, but I still do, a few times a year. Fire that burns and burns, but never quite consumes, or of a fire-ravaged aftermath. No one is ever hurt, there is never much drama, but I would wake up hot and terrified and certain that the electric wiring in the walls was slowing burning its way to the outside, or that lightning had struck a tree outside one of my three bedroom windows, or that the fire in the fireplace downstairs hadn’t been extinguished properly.

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I was terrified to leave my bed, so I’d watch for smoke under the door, and sometimes, after an agonizing wait, carefully go over to see if the door was warm. I can picture it now; when I was in kindergarten, we took a trip to a place called something like Santa Claus Lane, and I got a little Santa sticker I slapped on the middle of the inside of my door. It could not be fully scraped away later, and was always the first thing I saw when I woke each morning. So there was the little Santa, and maybe there was fire behind it, but I couldn’t hear anyone, and I’d call quietly for Mom, Dad, both, and raise my voice a little at a time til they either heard me, or heard me too loudly to carry on ignoring.

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When I was a little older, I’d make it out of my room into theirs, because I just could not go back to sleep in my own bed, not knowing what might happen. Even though I knew nothing would. 

You know, I sleep in a huge bed, and I always say I’ll never give it up because I like the heater in it, and also the sheer extravagance of spreading out my books and things all over it. But Mom and Dad’s bed was also very large, and so I did fit between them, probably not all that comfortably from their point of view, yet we were not crowded against each other. I would lie as perfectly still as I could, to not disturb them further, but I would worry for hours, falling asleep at dawn. 

I sleep very well now, or would if the schedule allowed for it. And I do like all this space. Maybe, though, it feels secure, like that part of childhood.

When the dreams didn’t haunt me every night, something would trigger one; smoke on the horizon, a thunderstorm, things like that. But I never feared actual fire; it fascinated me. Fire is awesome when it isn’t destroying something we’d like to still have around.

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Sometime I’ll write again and describe the dreams themselves, but one of them I had so often when I was a child seemed like the starting point, and I wondered for many years why I dreamed it. I concluded at some point I’d seen a scene like it on TV or in a movie, as my parents were just the worst at censoring scary or violent material from my young eyes.

(The truth is, they never intended to have me after the third and fourth pregnancies ended sadly, and they were not doing all that well with each other, though they kept trying, and so I grew up being both adored and “spoiled,” and left to my own devices, kind of in the way of what all the older people wanted to do or enjoy or brood at each other about. It was odd being taken to see The French Connection, but also being told I couldn’t stay up after 9 to watch Carol Burnett. But that’s enough digression.)

No one could remember any event that might have started this dream problem, though there was some serendipity to it initially that I’ll also rewrite some other time. 

When I was 17, my mom and I lived in a townhouse and our old house was featured on the TV news as it burned to the ground because of poorly stored paint cans and an abysmal volunteer fire department. I’ve had a few dreams over the years of wandering through it in a half-burned state.

Four years ago, I looked for the dozenth time for clues on the web, thinking maybe it had to do with a Night Gallery episode featuring that guy who played John Boy being a sin eater, and licking butter off his fingers as he consumed a meal laid out on a dead guy. I bet you didn’t watch that when you were 7 or 8, did you? But I did. And I never forgot it, Mom.

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You know, it’s a good thing I found it then, because the way Google searches (don't) work now, I think I never would. 

The main scary dream involved a girl laughing at her mom in a bed as flames rose up around her and she could not move. That’s all the detail you need, but I can picture it still. Because it is in this disaster of a movie that apparently re-aired on TV when I was about three years old. Yes, the mom in my dreams was Zsa Zsa freaking Gabor. Laugh as you wish. It’s okay. But anyway, now you know why I never watched Emergency! when I was a child. I self-censored; someone had to. I never saw Towering Inferno, either, until a few years ago. Funny how that movie played out like my dreams, fire just slowly, slowly taking over. Anyway. Here we are. Here is the entire movie, if you want to watch it, and certainly you do.

C. I turned the original blog into a link page to reach this one and the other two, and my Twitter account. But now that I want to use them all more, I want to be funny again, and silly, and also sometimes serious, and yes, much less long-winded, generally. I haven’t figured it out yet, though; I could go in any direction, or just back over all the same topics again. Your thoughts on that are welcome, and you don’t even need to sign in to leave them. I just gleefully delete stupid or mean ones, so it works out fine. 

PS: I found the original blog post about figuring out the fire dreams. But it's kind of long-winded, even for me. It's more complete and more visual and I think it's interesting, but then, I would, wouldn't I? Read it only if you're, uh, completionist about the naval-gazing things I sometimes write. 

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