Thursday, November 30, 2006


Last night, I dreamt that I walked to Iran. I traversed South Korea on foot, tiptoed across the rivers, pounced between the mountains, swaggered in and swaggered out of Seoul, dashed across the DMZ blowing off bullets until I came to a line in the dirt. One last glance back at the fluorescent pig intestine restaurant over my shoulder and I stepped over the line and vanished into the sandblasted Middle East of my mind. Escherian stairwell minarets spiraled up into a bloody red sunset, sour prayer calls swam through my ear canals, shrouded silhouettes lay piled up like sandbags in the sand. I stood ogling for a moment, then joined a passing tour group of Hasidic rabbis. We walked out of the city and into the desert, walked and walked until we came to an Aztec pyramid. We climbed the steps, thousands of them. At the top was an elevator. We rode down 200 floors and stopped. The tour guide turned and gestured shhhhhhh! A soft tinny bell sounded and the doors opened. We stepped out into a black candlelit Catholic grotto. I took flash pictures even though the sign said not to, because I wanted to remember this when I woke up.

I found myself outside on the street. Dark Latin children in soccer jerseys chased each other screaming madly down meandering gravel alleyways. So this was Iran. I felt suddenly drowsy and began to fall asleep, half-collapsing as I walked. I couldn't find a gas station, so I dumpster-dove for a canned cappuccino. I drank it in a single shot and woke up in my Korean bed. Holding a handful of sand. And wearing an Ayatollah Khomeini t-shirt.

I am grateful that somewhere in the troubled mist of our mammalian evolution, it became beneficial for our fuzzy forefathers to hallucinate in their sleep. Were it not for this lovely faculty of ours, life would be only marginally more interesting than televised poker.

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