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Monkey with a Gun

Dreamed 2010/8/7 by Wayan


I read Olaf Stapledon's FOUR ENCOUNTERS. As weird as his more cosmic stuff--a rogues' gallery of midcentury archetypes--writ extreme.

  1. The Christian (with his total monopoly on truth. Hey, isn't pride a sin?)
  2. The Scientist (equally closed-minded, even more sexist, and dangerously amoral--a gun for hire.)
  3. The Mystic (so pure he condemns this world as hopeless. Hey, isn't despair a sin?), and
  4. The Revolutionary ("Stalin a monster? Capitalist propaganda! And what if he is? The end justifies the means"...)
Shows all four worldviews unsparingly, and he doesn't spare himself. One of the subtlest horror scenes I've read is when Stapledon tortures a fly to make a point.

In the evening, my housemates and I watch The Lightning Thief. The images and cameos are vivid--Medusa, Charon, Hades and Persephone. But the plot and ideas are just childish. Such a contrast with Stapledon...


Branches arch over a jungle creek--bridges for a troop of big monkeys or small apes.

Uh-oh. One female somehow got hold of a gun. And clearly saw how it's used. She deliberately sights and fires at a comrade. A female monkey on a branch collapses. Blood sprays like a firehose. She bleeds out in seconds--fatal for sure. I feel sick, scared, sad.

Weirdly, as the blood-arc slows it also thins to pink then clear--plain water now!

Digital sketch of jungle stream. A monkey with a handgun shoots another on a log crossing the stream.

I bike down to the theater district to check out a singer-songwriter workshop. My friends Mike & Cory meet me at the club, a place called Biscuits and Blues.

I feel nervous and brusque as a skinny, slightly punk, quite gorgeous blonde at the door tries to talk to me. Despite her friendliness, I just can't! Place feels warm, welcoming, but I'm uneasy--dunno why. Sit with my friends, stick close, stay silent.

Mike's songwriting teacher, Bonnie Hayes, critiques demos:

Thank God it's over. Mike, Cory & I walk out... into a disaster zone. Cops all over, lights flashing. Looks like Hell's disco. The whole intersection's webbed in yellow tape. A German woman was killed by a stray bullet--just in the way of the gunman, who was after someone else. We're forced to detour a block. End up crossing Market on Sixth Street. Grimmest slum in town! Grotesques loom in the fog, limping and muttering through the reek of piss. Like Dante. OK, purgatory not inferno, but I'm edgy after earwitnessing a murder a few blocks back...

On Mission Street my friends catch a bus, and I bike home, contemplating what I heard. And what I dreamed the night before.


I didn't just dream of this reckless shooting one night earlier. For the last month, I've been typing up and illustrating a vivid, dark dream, A Date in Minsk, that I had exactly one year ago; finished illustrating it three weeks back. Minsk has closer parallels with the songwriters' workshop--and the murder--than Monkey. In the Minsk dream...

Three final oddities:
  1. The shooter was female too, and aimed for the victim in both Minsk and Monkey with a Gun, yet the suspect in the Geary Street shooting was male, and after someone else. The repetition of these discrepancies suggests they're signal not noise. Debating the existence of ESP, you can slip into dismissing such differences as inaccuracies, rather than as comments or creative use of (future) material. But are dreams out to report the future literally, to confirm the theories of dream researchers, or to say things (often complex, mixed things) we need to hear? Mind you, I don't know what it means--just that the repetition hints it's intentional.
  2. Minsk was a year before the actual murder, but it wasn't the first. Two years ago, I dreamed of yet another senseless handgun murder on a corner, as I watch and hear helplessly upstairs across the street: Fetal Pause. This killing seems to have sent shockwaves at least two years back through time.
  3. A Date in Minsk crawled with references to Audrey Niffenegger's The Time-Traveler's Wife, a book full of time-loops. At the time I didn't think much of that. Now I wonder if the dream wanted to WARN me it was a time-loop itself. Can psychic dreams flag themselves as psychic? Maybe they do want to help out parapsychologists, after all.

LISTS AND LINKS: primates - violence - guns - death - blood - shyness - music - creativity - San Francisco - predictive dreams - dream ESP in general - self-flagging dreams - A Date in Minsk & Fetal Pause

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