At the Albany airport bar about a month before coronavirus took hold like the drugs just outside Barstow, I met a cherubic writer, Robert Moss, who writes almost exclusively about dreams. He doesn’t delineate between waking and sleeping experience—to him, it’s all of a piece, and dream experiences are to be as honored as real ones. (He drinks a lot of gin, too, and sleeps on and off throughout a 24-hour cycle.) He teaches other people how to embrace life in the same way, through the Robert Moss School of Active Dreaming.
Life seems to be agreeing with him, don’t you think?
I’m starting to see things from his point of view. In a 24-hour period yesterday, the following things happened:
I woke at 5:00 a.m. Monday to the news that hundreds of people descended on Chicago around midnight for reasons unclear, making a coordinated attack with professional looting equipment and U-Haul vans, and smashing the shit out of Chicago’s Loop. It was still dark, and the story was still developing.
I had a conversation with a woman bar owner who was trying desperately to get a waitress of hers a job in another city. The girl needed a new start, we all agreed. All she needed was a job in another town—we had a line on a job in Atlanta—and maybe she could turn her life around. She was so beautiful, yet so tragic. And also a real pain in the bar owner’s ass, truth be told.
I met Duke basketball coach Mike Kryzewski and his three sons, all shorter than he is, for a beer. They were all tiny! One of the sons opened the conversation by telling us how insecure he is socially. I looked down at the table and realized he was reading the whole spiel word-for-word, from a script.
I played in a golf weekend that a bunch of us do every year, in Peoria. Except, this year it was in Chicago, and it was on a Monday. And about halfway through it, sirens began to howl. A “derecho” darkened the western sky and the temperature dropped. Derecho means “straight” in Spanish, as opposed to a “tornado,” which means “twisted.” So, we were hit by a straight tornado. We all grabbed our clubs off our carts, sprinted in fear to our cars and drove off in 12 directions, without saying goodbye. I drove past a big cemetery on the way home, and many of the oldest trees had crashed down onto the tombstones.
I went to a business conference in Baltimore. I had to film some stuff, for the record, had to get it up on YouTube. Because, Baltimore.
I had a fight with my wife about whether our teenage daughter should be doing more for society, and where she might start.
Try to guess which were real and which were dreams, and then tell me: What difference does it make?