Self-Indulgence 8: I Dream of (Con)nie
My last post about Tatami Galaxy and dreaming made me want to talk about something that happens in my own dreams quite a bit:
A lot of my dreams take place during anime conventions.
I have two kinds of dreams. The first is the sort I talked about several months ago, where some apocalyptic conflict is taking place and I gotta deal with it. The second deals with the inability to find shit.
In these dreams I’m trying to find something. It could be a person that I need to talk to, it could be some meaningless object that I want but don’t need, or it could be something else entirely. What matter is that I know what I want, I know where I’m supposed to find it, but it always ends up being right out of my reach. For whatever reason, the backdrop for these dreams in recent years has been anime conventions.
I had one of these dreams last night. I was at a convention and I was trying to find a particular person. Said person is a girl I know in real life, and in the context of the dream I had told her previously that I’d look for her when I got to the convention. Once I got to the convention in the dream, for whatever reason I instinctively knew that she was supposed to be in the dealer room. The convention is set up in a local mall, but once I get to the dealer room I find that it’s set up in a large gymnasium-like room that has no business being attached to a mall. Typical dream logic shit.
I make my way around the dealer room, checking out stuff while looking for this person that I know. I’m checking out figures and stuff and keeping my eyes peeled for this person. As the dream progressed, I start to get annoyed with myself. I became aware of the fact that I was dreaming, and I thought to myself “God dammit! Can’t I have one dream like this where I actually find what the hell I’m looking for? I bet I’m gonna wake up before I do.”
And once I said that to myself within the dream, I woke up. Self-fulfilling prophecy and all that nonsense.
It gets me that this is the only anime-related thing I ever dream about. I hear about fans who have dreams about characters they like, or having dreams where they have anime-like powers, or something along those lines. My fandom manages to weasel its way into my subconscience as a means to act out my tendency to fuck up when I really want to get something out of life. I’ve had a nasty record of having stuff blow up in my face when I really strive to get something. Tried to get into the JET program years ago, had that not work out. Tried to get into grad school, had that sabotaged by ineptness in the uni’s grad department. Tried to get into teaching, had all sorts of shit happen to fuck that up. And so on and so on.
The way I see it, these “shit’s just out of my reach but I can’t get it” dreams are me replaying that frustration. That’s typical dreaming stuff. What gets me is that more often than not these dreams take place while I’m at an anime con. I’m never wandering around a grocery store or a Wal-Mart or whatever. I’m not trying to get a hold of someone I know while at work or trying to find a book in a library. Nope. It always boils down to “there’s something at an anime con that I need, but there’s no way in hell I’m gonna get it and I know damn well I’ll never get it.”
Maybe I’m trying to tell myself to quit watching anime, as if it’s ruining my life. Or maybe my brain thinks that the only way this fucking otaku that it’s inside will pay attention to it is if it sugar coats it with silly cartoon crap.
Hell if I know. We’re talking about dreams. Giant Octopi causing global warming make more sense than real dreams.
Amusing thing said in my IRC room while I posted about this:
<@Landon> Had another dream last night that took place in an anime con and I’m blogging about that trend
<Mack> zombie apocalypse at a con, where the zombies are mindless creatures driven by instinct to satisfy their most base needs. They roam the floor, searching for human shapes and are easily distracted by the shrill screams of women
or you know, Otaku looking for figurines and geeking out over some high-pitched voice actress
<@ThreeDark> That would’ve been more fun if you’d said “Zombie Apocalypse at a con, where the mindless creatures driven by instinct to satisfy their basest needs. Roaming the floor, searching for human shapes and easily distracted by the shrill screams of women disgusted at their repugnant forms. And then there are Zombies.”