I Dreamt Of Alligators

I fell asleep in the dentist’s chair this afternoon, walked home, had a liquid lunch (fruit shake, not booze), then fell into a deep, deep sleep where I dreamt of alligators.

I was in Southeast Asia somewhere, narrating in retrospect a walk through the jungle. I had a long stick with a nail on the end, and was traipsing through tall, swampy grass just waiting for an alligator to lunge at me. Instead, on edge the entire time, I tripped and stumbled through the rock and weeds, only catching glimpses of them slipping into the nearby creek.

In the next scene, I was covering an uprising of some sort, a la Vietnam. People were streaming through a river by a city. Helicopters were swooping in and evacuating refugees. There was an opposition army firing on everyone. And I was covering the whole thing like Dan Rather or something.

Then — poof! — I’m in a vacation rental somewhere in Florida or something. It’s similarly swampy. And the house is on stilts over a swamp. There are stairwells down to docks on the water where there are — yup — alligators resting in the sun.

I woke up singing REM’s “Hope.”

You want to go out Friday and you want to go forever
You know that it sounds childish that you’ve dreamt of alligators
You hope that we are with you and you hope you’re recognized
You want to go forever you see it in my eyes
You want to trust the doctors their procedure is the best
But the last try was a failure and the intern was a mess
And they did the same to Matthew and he bled ’til Sunday night
They’re saying don’t be frightened but you’re weakened by the sight
You lock into a pattern and you know that it’s the last ditch
You’re trying to see through it and it doesn’t make sense
But they’re saying don’t be frightened and they’re killing alligators
And they’re hog-tied and accepting of the struggle

See what five doctor visits in five days’ll do to a guy?

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