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My family and I have recently bought an enormous house with cathedral-sized ceilings in a fairly trendy suburban neighborhood. The house, however, is made of a flimsy, grayish-blue wood material and is supported by four stilts, much like an ocean or riverfront home would be.

I am sitting in the backyard by the pool, which, for some reason, is shaped like a guitar. I happen to gaze out over our fence and notice that our neighbor, an elderly southern gentleman, is lighting the fuse of some sort of gigantic rocket-shaped explosive in his backyard.

Startled by this, I immediately shriek and run into the house. On my way up the stairs, I realize that this house is equipped with a towering stereo system which touches the ceiling. My father is standing by the stereo and yells something to the effect of "How's it look? All the neighbors have one!"

I reach my room and open the door. Upon entering, I am greeted by a guy I knew in junior high school, Richard. He is baking pizza in what appears to be an Easy-Bake oven. He asks me to join him in eating the pizza. I accept his offer out of politeness. I notice, much to my chagrin, that the pizza is topped with oysters.

I am now perusing the electronics department of a large store, apparently a Wal-Mart or a K-Mart. I slip a cuckoo clock (yes, a cuckoo clock) under my jacket and keep walking. I notice that in the background, music is playing. It's "She Talks to Angels" by the Black Crowes.

I wake up and discover that I have left the radio on by my bed, the probable explanation for the aforementioned music.

Sam Phillips died today. Or maybe yesterday. I can't remember which. Even if you don't know the name, you know his work.

So you want to be a rock and roll star?
Then listen now to what I say.
Just get an electric guitar
Then take some time
And learn how to play.

I'm dreaming about music again.

When I was a teenager, I used to dream about music. Rock stars. Being a star. I had dreams about Kurt Cobain. About Paul Westerberg. About Michael Stipe. About John Lennon. No, they weren't necessarily sexual. They were about music. Like a boy dreaming about baseball, I guess. But when I was thirteen, fourteen, I would dream about musicians, I would dream about music. I had just thrown myself headlong into that world, I had started to play the guitar, to play the saxophone.

Hey kids, rock and roll.
Nobody tells you where to go, baby.

Eventually the dreams were replaced by anxiety nightmares and sex. Still not sure which is which. But at any rate, I stopped dreaming about music, about rock and roll. I'm not sure why. Maybe I got caught up in other parts of life: school, work, sex, drinking. I don't know.

Keep you doped with religion, sex, and tv
And you think you're so clever and classless and free

But suddenly, over the last couple of weeks, I've started dreaming about music again. Now, understand, sometimes music doesn't ever show up. I just start dreaming about things connected to music.

Times ain't tough--they're tedious.

I think it started with Radiohead. A couple of weeks back, I had a dream that I was back in England, visiting Oxford. For whatever reason, Johnny Greenwood borrowed a plate from me--yeah, a dinner plate. To put a cake on. (?) So I lent him the plate. I had to come back home, however, and didn't get my plate back. In the mail, though, it came back to me, still unwashed, with a note saying, "Thanks for the lending."

Not too long afterwards--maybe a night or two later--I had a dream that I was in a deserted mansion. Only it wasn't deserted. There was a party. I'm not sure what kind of party--maybe a Halloween party. It's hard to be sure. And so, in this semi-abandoned mansion, at a party, for whatever reason I spent the whole time talking in a bored, affected voice to John Flansburgh. (Do I think I'm Edith Head?) Like most dreams, I don't remember much, other than that this situation wasn't the slightest bit odd--not even the ridiculous accent I was speaking in (some sort of weird Anglo-French).

Last week, I had a dream that I can't quite remember, but I do know Peter Buck was in it at some point. I only wish I could remember what I was doing or saying. Then again, maybe not--even in my dreams, I'm pretty embarressed.

You're invisible now
You've got no secrets to conceal.

And then I think it stopped. Or at least I stopped remembering my dreams. But then last night, I had a dream. I was at my parents' house, doing laundry, bored on a Friday night. So I went out into the barn, hooked up a stereo, and started playing music and playing my guitar. And I suddenly remembered that I had to practice my own songs--my own songs--because I was going to perform the next day. I haven't performed in, well, years.

It was sweet, like lead paint is sweet
But the after effects left me paralyzed.

I haven't had these kinds of dreams in a long time. At first it bothered me--am I regressing? Why am I having dreams like a kid? What's wrong with me? But when I woke up and heard that Sam Phillips was dead, I think I realized what was going on.

My life has always been informed by music. From my mother in the church choir, to my dad who never had a lesson but played piano by ear, to my grandfather who played saxophone, to my days in the school band... I think I know what's going on, what I want. And I'm too tired to fight it, but I'm ready to fight for it. Cause life is very, very short.

I want to be in a band when I get to heaven,
anyone can play guitar and they won't be a nothing any more.

I was riding with my girlfriend home from Knoxville and we apparently stopped at a restaurant to have some lunch, and her parents and I were having an extremely good conversation (about what I couldn't tell you; I normally don't remember dreams at all, much less details). We were in the town of Goodletsville, close to our hometown of Springfield, so I decided to ride the rest of the way home with them in their Excursion so that we could finish the conversation. Her mother was driving and her father was in the back seat, and I had shotgun.

This is where it starts getting wierd.

We left the parking lot and we were on a very curvy one way one lane road with bright white curbs; and her mother was absolutely flying. She had the Excursion up to eighty five at one point, and I was terrified. There was a really good song on the radio, I just wish I could remember what it was.

We came out of that road and we ended up on Long Hollow Pike, headed away from the interstate that would have been the easiest way home. Where the McDonald's should have been stood a Logan's Roadhouse, and instead of the regular Logan's sign it has a big blue monstrosity of a sign.

"What's that smell?" Her dad asks. Garth Brooks's "We Shall be Free" is playing on the radio.

I glanced over at Logan's again. "Logan's is on fire...Well, the sign is." It really wasn't though, the sign was just losing a lot of white smoke.

I don't remember the rest.

Usually my dreams are just so much random nonsense, but I actually pulled a lot of meaning out of this one. Her mom was driving fast and scaring me, and this is because I associate her with too much control and no respect for the control she has; my girl and I are teenagers so she has a lot of pull in our relationship. I'm scared of her. She's a psycho.

Her dad's in the back seat because I like him and I don't see him as a threat. He's back there because I'm not worried about him.

The Logan's Roadhouse was there because my girlfriend's name is Logan and the sign was smoking (obviously) because she's hot.

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