I had a dream last night. I wonder what it means.
I was going back to college, but it was at my old high school. I was there with various friends and classmates from different points in my life. I got to my first class after a mad scramble, but the teacher wasn’t there yet. The classroom had the usual array of desks and, for some reason, a bed. I placed my laptop and backpack on the bed, declaring it mine. That was when I realized I had to use the bathroom badly. Number 2. Couldn’t wait. So I packed everything except for my laptop — presumably to keep my reservation on the bed — and headed toward the restroom.
The restroom was the one in the lobby at my high school. It always stank of cigarette smoke, but this being the beginning of the year, it had yet to be used. I took that moment to appreciate the clean scent I knew wouldn’t last long. As I sat on the toilet, I marveled at how plush the bathroom seemed. Suddenly, it became an office, with my toilet in the center, facing away from the principal’s desk. And the seat was no longer a toilet, and my pants were no longer down. But I’d still done the dirty deed. And not only had it gotten all over my underwear and jeans, but also my red UL T-shirt, which had impossibly gotten crinkled under my butt. Yeah.
The principal, a young black woman, asked me what I was doing. I told her something like, “Well, this was a toilet but I’m confused now. And I really need to change clothes.” She responded by nodding sympathetically, as if this sort of thing happened all the time. “Do you know where I can get a change of clothes?” She pointed me to a clothing store down the hall, which seemed perfect for me. But I couldn’t afford anything there, so that idea was out. Defeated, I decided I could just take my shirt off and wing that the rest of the day. But that didn’t solve my pants problem.
Fortunately, my backpack turned into my Sesame Street bag from preschool, which always had a spare set of bottom apparel. I went into another bathroom (one that stayed a bathroom) and cleaned myself up. As for the shirt situation, well, I was suddenly wearing a clean white T-shirt, so that took care of itself.
By then, I was in a rush to get back to class. But it was now 8:45, so class would be over in five minutes. It seemed pointless to head in so late in the session, but I still had to grab my laptop from the bed (assuming it hadn’t been stolen and all my unreleased work spread to the whole school). I looked at my class schedule ticket to remember where my class had been. “Biology — Anniston — 937.” By now I was well more than five minutes away from the classroom, so I took my time. And as is the case with so many of my dreams, I began the tedious and fully realized task of combing through room numbers to find 937. I went up in an elevator that was suddenly there, and on the fifth floor that was suddenly there was 937. At least, that’s what the guide sign said. But nearly all the door numbers were completely random.
It was at this point that one of the dogs who had jumped onto my bed nudged me slightly. I woke up just enough to say, “OK, this is a dream. I’m putting myself at room 937 now. To hell with looking.”
So I walked into Mrs. Anniston’s class, which by then was her next class. Everyone stared at me and the teacher stopped calling her roll. I went up and shook her hand. “Hi, remember that guy Ian on your first roll? That’s me. I wanted to be here and I was, but I had — uh — a personal accident.”
“Ah,” said Mrs. Anniston a bit impatiently.
“Anyway, sorry to bother you. I left my laptop on the bed.”
“Here it is,” she said, producing it from the desk. “Someone turned it in.”
By the time I changed and retrieved my laptop, my second class was nearly over. Seriously, this again?
The random howling of a dog on my bed rousted me awake. I muttered for her to stop before drifting off again.
Next thing I know, I was sitting on a couch in what must have been my apartment, in the middle of a Friday afternoon. I picked up my schedule from the table and said, “Oh, shoot, I haven’t been to class in four days. Wow! That’s never happened to me before. They’ll never notice. On the other hand, maybe I should just drop all my classes. Hell, I have a master’s degree anyway! Besides, it’s Jan. 7. Isn’t the semester over? OK, that works.”
Howl. Awake for good. Freaking dogs.
This reminds me of another dream I had recently, where I was still playing for my high school football team, but decided to retire. A huge sense of relief washed over me. I had the same feeling after realizing in this dream that I was stressing out over nothing serious, because I’d already made my mark in school.
I should dream more. But less about poop.