ben vandgrift · on living the dream

strange dreams.

had wierd dreams last night, but i generally do. another dream segment set in a decaying lexington—an imagined neighborhood north of campus that's even more run-down than the real thing, but instead of angry danger, there's a sense of community.

that's not the dream i want to record, as that setting recurs and is very familiar to me, even if the characters don't represent real people.

instead, a dream of a few nights ago. i don't remember much—the world i was on was a wasteland of sorts, with little towns strewn out across impossible distances. i was duelling with someone—a duel of cosmology. (yes, it sounds like an andrew game—how i miss them.) i'm not sure what the prize was, but there was a dragon involved—cast in the oriental style, and he represented the embodiment of the galaxy—maybe an embodiment of a connection to the galaxy. the dragon was what we were trying to control.

the dragon had rules, and we didn't necessarily know what they were, but he could do nasty things if we pushed the wrong buttons. it was suspended, surrounded, and connected to a chain of stars, a web of sorts in which the stars hung. each star had s fixed number of connections in this web (which visually looked more like a road than a node-map—it was nearly fixed width, though it could've also been a web turned on its side) and through the connections you could travel and communicate. i realized all this toward the end of the dream.

my opponent was not from the world we were fighting for (possibly over), and as such he could fight dirty—destroying locales, killing people, all that. the details are unimportant, but the means to victory wasn't. i realized what the dragon was before he did—a set of connections, rather than a force of change. the change went through the connections, it was not its own thing. in realizing this, i also realized that i could remove the world we were on from the webbing. it would be its own thing. so i set the dragon free. by doing so, i removed my opponents power to leave.

he was stuck in his mess. the mess he had made. as such, he immediately surrendered. it was, however, too late—i didn't know how to bring the connections back, only how to cut them loose. pyrrhic? it didn't feel that way at the time—it felt like i hadn't lost anything important. the dream moved on, but this is the segment that i remember.

written: Jan 14 2005