by Marinka on July 22, 2008

Here’s the thing: Unless you’re Martin Luther King, Jr., no one cares about your dream. And more than being apathetic, they actively hope and pray that you don’t tell them about your dream. It’s not that they don’t love you (although keep telling them your dreams and watch this factor come into play), it’s that other people’s dreams are really, really boring. And they don’t make sense. And they are boring.

Yesterday my son started telling me his dream that seemed to involve a tough guy or beheadings and I was making my “I’m listening” face, which incidentally is identical to my “I’m trying to see the tips of my eyelashes” face, but inside I was thinking, “Does this dream have an end? Is he still talking? My God, how many words do seven year olds know, anyway? His mouth is still moving. He’s chewing, right? Maybe he’s just chewing. But there is also sound. Stop. Talking. Stop. SHUT UP ALREADY.” And this is my child, who I love and who is precious to me. So you can imagine what it’s like if a semi-precious co-worker starts regaling me with stories of dream super powers.

And yet, I’ve been there. I’ve had a dream that was so exciting, intricate and real that I absolutely had to share it with someone. More than one someone. And I’ve tried various tricks to keep the person interested. And now, for no extra charge, I will share them with you.

Marinka’s Top Ten Tips for Telling a Victim About Your Dream

1. Pick your target carefully. I cannot stress this enough. Generally speaking, there are only two types of people who do not mind listening to dreams: Analysts (Freudian, preferably) and prostitutes. And sometimes the latter have standards, so I can’t make any guarantees. If you are on a budget, and neither of those two is an option, try to make sure that your dream-recipient falls into one of the following categories: asleep/comatose, does not speak English, listening to an Ipod with eyes closed. This will minimize any annoyance that you may inadvertently inflict.

2. Make sure your victim has a drink in his/her hand. Be prepared to say “the next one’s on me,” whenever you come to an end of the sentence. Do not be alarmed by how quickly the other person is draining the drinks. It only looks like they are doing martini shots.

3. Make sure all the exits out of the room are secured.

4. Leg irons and handcuffs never hurt anyone, either.

5. Do not under any circumstances ask, “want to hear my dream?” Instead, segue into it like this: “I had a dream about you last night, it was great!” Everyone loves to hear about themselves, so you will be able to drone on about how in your dream you looked just like Christy Turlington, but not as flaky and Matt Damon was really in love with you, but you couldn’t commit to him because he was shorter than you. Then, when you’re nearing the end, add “oh, yeah, then you walked by and you looked fantastic. I think you had a tan.”

6. Never say, “Oh, I forgot about this part, let me back up.” That expression can turn a murder into “justifiable homicide”.

7. You know how your English teacher told you that the details make the story? Don’t start listening to her now.

8. You may think that it’s best to tell your dreams to someone who is in the habit of telling you theirs. This is retaliatory dream telling and is a common mistake among novices. If you do that, you are just perpetuating a cycle that has no end. You must eliminate the dream tellers from your life, or engage them in a more professional relationship (see Item 1, above). Do not talk to these people. I repeat, do not. (Also, if you are sitting there minding your own business and someone says, “so, how did you sleep? Have any interesting dreams?” do not fall for it. They don’t give a shit about your dreams and as soon as you pause for air, they’ll jump into with their own snoozer. Ward it off at the head. “Dream? I read that only psychotic animal abusers remember their dreams.” Kills several birds with one stone, if you ask me.)

9. Have band aids on hand in case your victim’s ears start to bleed.

10. Never do “dream sequels”. That’s when you re-target the same victim and say, “remember that dream I told you the other day? Well, I had a follow-up dream last night!” Because just the other night I had a dream that someone started to do that to me, and boy was it annoying. It’s a good thing that I looked just like Uma Thurman in it.

One year ago ...

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Marmite Breath July 22, 2008 at 4:31 am

I am just plain embarrassed at how quickly I have become addicted to your blog. It’s my new favourite!



sdl July 22, 2008 at 5:46 am

Well, Uma, that was your funniest yet! LOL at retaliatory dream telling.

Kids at least are trying to make sense out of their dreams and parents are supposed to help them make sense out of the world so it sort of makes sense…except for the part where they start lying because they lose track of what really happened in their dream or it wasn’t exciting enough. But adults? No excuse, unless they pay you large sums of money first.


Marinka July 22, 2008 at 6:46 am

Thanks, ladies! Wait, you’re not just saying that so that I will listen to your dreams, are you? Because I’m not ready to start drinking yet.


Mama Ginger Tree July 22, 2008 at 8:20 am

That was awesome. Now I’ve got my sister addicted to your blog too. You know, the one whose baby looks like an aardvark.


Kia July 22, 2008 at 1:10 pm

“His mouth is still moving. He’s chewing, right? Maybe he’s just chewing. But there is also sound. Stop. Talking. Stop. SHUT UP ALREADY.”

OMG!! OMG!!!! That’s me. And my son. Who’s only 4. Does this mean it’s going to get worse????!!!! WTF??!!!


Quart July 22, 2008 at 2:57 pm

I wanted to tell you how I had a dream about Twitter and you last night but I won’t because it would break my heart if you stopped following me.

Does MamaGingerTree know that if her sister reads your blog she can see that she called her baby an aardvark?


Madge July 22, 2008 at 3:22 pm

seriously. i love your blog so much. this post was hilarious.

especially the part about your son — i thought it was me listening to my ten year old….


Kristine July 23, 2008 at 8:00 am

This is exactly why I don’t tell people about my dreams. Thanks for the confirmation.


jon July 24, 2008 at 12:30 am

after reading about this, I dreamt my vet became my new lesbian roommate and she was very mean to me. and I was working at a photo store, selling film and stuff. do they still have those? It was very traumatic, and I am glad it’s over.


texasholly September 30, 2008 at 6:11 pm

My favorite was no sequels. You are really taking all the fun out of dreaming. super funny.


Jenny, the Bloggess November 18, 2008 at 11:56 am

You are dead to me.

Now to find a prostitute so I can tell her the rest of my dream.


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