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Vampire Tests

Dreamed 2015/8/22 by Wayan


An odd geographical discovery. While researching coastlines for my world-in-progress Inversia, I've discovered a secret island. A big one, too--big as Britain. It's called southern Alaska! Get a map and follow me: from Dry Bay near Mt Fairweather, go north up the Alsek River. It cuts right through the tallest mountain range in North America! Wriggles up between volcanoes into the Yukon. The Alsek appears (on every map I have) to end in a braided channel below one tongue of the Logan/St Elias icefield, west of Lake Kloo and Haines Junction; but the channel forks, and one branch runs north into Kluane Lake, thence to the Yukon River. Ride the current down, back into the US. From the Yukon Delta, head south around the Alaska Peninsula and east across the Gulf to the Alaska Panhandle--and Dry Bay again. You've just circumnavigated Southern Alaska. So isn't it an island?

Map of southern Alaska--entirely surrounded by water. Click to enlarge. Yukon's Kluane National Park; Alsek River marked in red.

Whatever it is, it's not unique. The Guianas and Roraima massif in South America is an even bigger river-island, via a linking stream between the Orinoco and Amazon. If you can boat around it, isn't it an island? If Greenland's called an island even though, most of the year, you can walk to it over the ice, how can we fairly deny Roraima or Southern Alaska are islands too?

I don't know--maybe this branch of the Alsek is too shallow right at the source, and you can circumnavigate southern Alaska only by raft or wetsuit... or in theory... But to me, that still makes it an island. A secret island!
Wonder Falls (TV show)--souvenirs talk to slacker giftshop clerk.


Watch Wonder Falls. Jaye's hallucinations tell her to do things that hurt her but help others in unexpected ways. The show's funny but troubles me too, since I live with similar oracular intrusions (fortunately, in dreams not waking life) and for the same reason Jay gets them: "Because", as the toy monkey tells her, "you listen."

But Jaye jumps to conclusions--she never revises her literal-minded first guesses, and assumes they're all about HER and fixing HER life... and is disappointed.

I don't expect all my dream-advice to be about me. Or even interpretable enough to act on.

Is that sensible and mature, or do I play it too safe? Jaye has a lot of uproar in her life, but she does seem to be growing as a result.

Am I?
A sunny meadow. Vampires hide in a red tent. Dream sketch by Wayan. Click to enlarge.


Star Trek officers, led by Captain Kirk, are huddled under a thin mesh blanket set up like a tent on a lawn, sheltering their charges--some vampire counts & countesses. Kirk is testing the myth they'll die in sunlight. Other vampire myths have proven false or more nuanced than folklore has it. But this one seems part-true. They're ill even now in low winter sun cut further by the blanket. Even open shade's too much light for comfort. They're unburnt, but feel queasy, drained. Sunsick! Like seasickness in humans.

A second Nosferatu myth turns out to be true: vamps do kinda hypnotize their villagers so they meekly submit--treat blood as a tax they owe their betters.

The science officer, Spock of course, calculates that "The highest sustainable vampire density is only 5% of a population, and that's theoretical; with reasonable safety margins, 1-3% is more realistic." Vamps don't kill victims--enlightened bloodfarmers don't slaughter their dairy herds.

And vamps feel noblesse oblige: they're supposed to sustain elite culture--the arts & sciences. They have, after all, the free time to. Leisure's analogous to blood--or capital! Pooling is best. Vamps feel they make the most effective use of it, so they deserve it! They're guardians of civilization.

Kirk set out to modernize this relationship in light (if not sunlight) of modern tech, letting the 99% unlock their potential too. So far, half the myths he's tested are false.

But it's still not clear what this new social compact would be. Or if the vamps will sign.



This dream stood out for its odd image and lack of drama. A vampire dream without the slightest atmosphere, horror, romance? Not even satire. Just methodical testing, moderate discomfort, patient data collection. Vampirism normalized.

I think my morning-after interpretation is probably right--Spock's logical calculation that parasitism has to be kept slight or the system collapses really IS about money and class. I agreed with the dream, and backed Bernie Sanders; I wish more people had. I think Trump & the GOP won't quell financial vampirism; they favor the rich even more than the Democrats.

But what's the dream mean personally? Usually my weird little dream-stories have some echo between my day life & night life. But here? A geographical curiosity, a TV show about a visionary girl who takes her oracles too literally, then Kirk & Spock scientifically test vampires so they can restructure a society. About the only common theme I see is "Pay attention to detail!"

I know the scientific method works on a personal level; I did just such patient, uncomfortable testing to heal (mostly) from chronic illness my doctors couldn't fix (a persistent infection, probably Lyme). The dream urged me to test something. Something uncomfortable. But what? I still don't know.

For readers, the lesson may simply be that even an experienced dreamer can't always figure out, from a single dream, what action your dreams want. Jung emphasized this long-haul aspect of dreamwork. But by favoring dreams where I can show you an "Aha!" moment, I've painted dreamwork as consistently quick & easy. It's not.

Some dreams just nag at you like a toothache. A long, fangy toothache.


My testing continued--but I turned it on myself & my sisters, who share my vulnerability to recurring infections, fragile cancer-prone, sun-vulnerable skin... and found we also share physical markers for a mutation, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, that explains most of our other health oddities. Between us, nearly 190 years of American health coverage, and not one doctor ever checked for it; I had to go in with a checklist and convince my doctors. My sisters both fit the criteria too, but have crappy healthcare and still haven't been formally diagnosed. Except by relentless me. Experimenting. Since no one else will.

LISTS AND LINKS: Star Trek dreams - weird dream beings - vampires - blood - beds - shells & shelters - light & heat - math & logic - science & tests - recurrent illness & genetics - money & economics - 1% versus 99%: a dream of Ethical Vampirism (oops, Ethical Investing) - a more detailed nondream look at Capital in the 21st Century

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