Signs and Portents and Soccer
I saw "Signs" over the weekend. It's genuinely thrilling - but there's more to it than just creeping the viewer out - and the end, the message is uplifting, and everything has meaning, even the seemingly terrible things. I enjoyed it a lot - enjoyed jumping out of my skin, enjoyed being swept up in the affirmation of faith (not that I have any, but it sure seems like a good idea!) - I kept thinking, "What a movie!". Shyamalan has definitely still got 'it'. I was doubly creeped out when I got home that evening, and started to cook up some dinner, and the lights went out. My first thought. "Crap. Which room in this house is most defensible from aliens?" (Answer: my bedroom.) My second thought, "Crap. The computer just crashed."
Power was out for about two hours, during which I sat on the front stoop and read my book. (Rubicon by Stephen Saylor) The whole neighborhood was out, so I chatted with my neighbors to either side. We shared beers and gossip, talked about the park across the street, and watched James' kids try and scare each other since the power was out. I also found out that Robespierre, Tacitus, Bad Kitten and Bacon (the various critters that I've found in my kitchen) are just as much a menace to everyone else. And I also found out that Danette found a brown recluse spider in her house - which certainly didn't make me happy to hear. In all, it was kind of fun - it felt like a block party, and I got to know my neighbors better than I otherwise might have.
Saturday, I messed around during the day, thinking "I ought to go run, I ought to go run" - but never got to it due to the ghastly heat. Then I went to see the Philadelphia Charge, the WUSA soccer team, play. There was this amazing festival atmosphere - they had a band playing, booths from sponsors, food of all sorts, handouts, games and prizes - and tons and tons and tons of kids running around. The soccer game was pretty exciting... it's a professional game, and they play like pros. Not that this should be a surprise or anything.
On one hand, I kept thinking how great it is that women's professional sports is financially viable and doing well - it's about time! On the other hand, I kept thinking those soccer players were young and pretty, and was trying to scheme how I could get a date with one. Anyway - the team mascot is a superheroine-type girl with a big yellow wig, tights, a skirt, a cape - and large gauntlets. Whenever The Charge scored, she would do backflips down the length of the field, which is a physically impressive feat, to say the least.
I got a burger at a bbq stand at the game. There were three people working the stand, two guys flipping burgers, chicken and ribs over the coals, and a girl taking money. It was perfectly evident that they all loathed each other,and wanted to interact with each other as little as possible. The girl was talking on the phone when I walked up, and refused to get off the phone. She continued to chat, and kept saying, "Okay, hang on, I have to do something. Can I help you?" staring at me imperiously like I was mortally offending her by intruding on ther phone conversation. She begrudgingly took my money, and mumbled "one burger" to the two guys who were cooking up burgers as fast as they could. They'd flip a cooked burger into a big metal pan, and then put on another uncooked one. When someone ordered a burger, they'd put another uncooked one onto the grill, and make them wait for it to cook. What were the burgers in the metal pan for? I don't know - and I don't think they knew either. Something that should have taken about fifteen seconds took at least five minutes...and I really felt like jumping behind the counter and setting things up so they would actually DO something. "You, off the phone - take the money, and tell him what to cook. You - when she tells you what she wants, you set it up on a plate with a bun. You, when you see a bun, put a burger on it. Then you take it, and hand it to whoever just ordered. Ok?"
I didn't. Instead, I just meekly got my burger, coated it in ketchup since the pumps were primed for "super orgasmic ketchup geyser at the slightest touch" - and went to my seat. (the guy behind me sprayed ketchup all over his shorts. White shorts. If I had been wearing white shorts, it would have been me.)
Afterwards, my friends and I yakked about professional cycling (it's hard to find cycling fans in America, I tell ya) and then I went home. The game was exciting - 3 to 1, Philly over San Diego. In all, it was a pretty good night.
Last night, I had peculiar dreams. At one point, I dreamt that I was a centaur. Except that instead of just a regular centaur, I also had human legs dangling from the front of my horse-body. I remember thinking, "cool, when I get tired, I can just tip forward and make a sort tripod with my human legs!"
The really significant dream (the portent from the title of this entry) was one where I was part of a revolutionary group, fighting a desperate battle where we were holed up in the rubble of a city. My brother and I (in the RL I have no brother) were taking one last respite before the action got hot and serious. A woman who I had fallen in love with was visiting from someplace distant - and during the course of the dream,I realized that I wanted to be very serious with her - that I was crazy about her. But, she decided that even though she had an extra day before she had to return home, she was going to catch an early flight. I was disappointed, but I respected her independence, so I didn't make a fuss about it. When she was supposed to be home, I called her to ask her to wish me luck in the coming battle. However, her roommate told me she wasn't home, and had stopped off to visit a boyfriend in New York before coming home.
The battle began. I don't remember specifics, it was probably one of those dreamlike "Okay - we have a long fight now... cut to the resolution" type things. Afterwards, I sat down amidst the rubble to make a phone call to the woman I loved. A reporter sat down opposite me and said, "Okay, just a few questions..." and started scribbling in a notebook. I screamed, as loud as I could, "NO QUESTIONS RIGHT NOW!" - I was just too worn out from the fighting, from the trauma... and I snapped and was furious way out of proportion to this guy's offense.
Finally, I got this woman on the phone, and said, "You told me you were going home. You told me you wanted to be with me, but that it would take time - but rather than stay here with me, you went to visit another man. But I don't care about that, I want to work things out anyway. I just need some support right now, because my brother's wife died in the fighting, and when he found out he took a car and charged the enemy, and then crasehd into a stanchion. They don't think he'll survive."
I don't remember the rest of the dream - but those themes were pretty stark. Let's see - I'm fighting against a superior foe, but I don't want to answer questions about it. I fall in love with a woman who is demonstrably dishonest and unfaithful, but choose to pursue the relationship anyway - and my "brother's" relationship with a woman was so dependent that he ends his own life rather than live without.
Sometimes the sub-conscious sends hints that hit with all the subtlety of an Acme Anvil (tm) in a Looney Tunes cartoon.