The Friday Morning Listen: Pat Metheny Group – Imaginary Day (1997)

I’m one of those people who tend to not remember their dreams. Most mornings, I have a feeling that some dreams have come to pass, but couldn’t tell you about any of them in much detail. When I’m particularly tired it’s common for me to have a lot of dreams, with the fragments having a little more staying power — just enough so that I can perceive that the dreams took place. When I wake up, it kind of feels like I’ve been watching television all night long, with somebody changing the channel every 30 seconds.

A few nights ago, right it middle of one of these channel-surfing episodes, a dream came that stood right out. I woke up, shook my head, and wondered just where the hell it came from.

I’m taking a friend (always “a friend” in my dreams, as they are almost always strangers) to a local ice cream stand, one supposedly known for its tremendous vanilla soft-serve. We’re sitting at a picnic table, enjoying our ice cream which we’re spooning out of these small, shallow plastic dishes that remind me of the ones used for microwave entrees. Yes, this stuff is really, really tasty…until we both run into something crunchy at the bottom, which turns out to be some dried brown rice and pinto beans. What’s worse is that my ice cream now has a black hair in it. At first I’m pretty sure it’s mine, until I try to pull it out and stop when I get to the two-foot mark, with the end not in sight.

Great, now I’ve got to take the stuff back. Man, I hate takin’ stuff back. Plus, I kind of don’t want to get the girl at the counter in trouble (the hair?).

So I leave my friend and begin to walk back to the stand, which is somehow more than a short distance from our table. As I approach the stand from the rear (Why? C’mon, we’ve got dream logic here!) a man starts walking toward me, waving and gesturing toward the dish I’m holding. He is apparently the owner of the establishment and seems to know that there was a problem with my serving.

Here is where the brain chemicals really kick in:

As I’m about to point out the rice, the beans, and the hair, the man shows me this dark chocolate layer cake. It’s about three inches thick, triangular in shape but with one side curved slightly, and is covered in thick, dark frosting. On that convex side are three square holes. He brings the cake to his lips and appears to blow into the back “point,” which causes silky curls of smoke to be emitted from the holes in the opposite side. As the smoke clears he lifts the cake to eye level…those holes are actually windows. Inside of the cake is what looks like the control console of a space ship, complete with working displays and a group of uniformed personnel who are very busy.

And then I woke up. What this means, beyond the fact that I was very tired, I just do not know. Do you remember your dreams?

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to Jazz.com, Blogcritics.org and Salon, he writes several weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.