Being bits of wisdom gleaned from daily walks with my dog, Coffee. He left for stars unknown in 2010.
The roaring whoosh
Last night I dreamed that Coffee got glasses. Thick, black framed glasses like I had as a kid. He sat in the optometrist’s chair and when the doctor moved that gigantic gizmo over his snout with all the lens variations, Coffee woofed out the teeny letters at the bottom of the eye chart. I stood nearby singing the Beatles song “Ticket to Ride.”
This morning I ran it past Katherine, who knows everything about dreams. She reminded me that we’d recently gotten a sales notice from a bookstore in a mall in Syracuse, my home town.
“What does that have to do with my dream?”
Well, says Katherine, directly across from the bookstore in that mall is an eyeglasses place, correct?
A jarring memory reached up from the depths.
“Remember what happened the last time you were there?”
How could I forget? In the bookstore I bought a Fred Vargas policier about Paris Commissaire Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg of the 5th arrondissement. Then I went looking for the mall’s restroom.
“Never a smart thing to do in a mall,” Katherine remarked.
Yeah, but sometimes you have no choice. So there I was, seated, holding my new book. I glanced down at it and, without provocation, invocation or cation of any kind, the right lens of my glasses popped out of my frames. Popped and dropped like a dead bird in Kansas. Down past Commissaire Adamsberg, through my hands and into the depths with a splunk.
I may have screamed, it’s all fuzzy now. I jumped up, turned quickly toward the abyss, but not quickly enough. Some Einstein thought it a great idea that terlets flush automatically as soon as the perpetrator has de-canned. The roaring whoosh of a mini Niagara Falls—essentially sucking away my right eyeball—elicited another moan of pain. I stood with one eye behind glass, the other staring stupidly from an empty frame.
It took me half an hour to feel my way back to the eyeglasses store. The good news: they built me a new pair of glasses in an hour. The bad news: half-blind, I selected a pair of $35 frames that turned out to be $350.
“But what about the Beatles song?”
Katherine pointed to the board game we’d played the night before. It’s title: “Ticket To Ride.”
“Your dreams are easy,” she said. “You’re so literal-minded.”
“What about Coffee? Why was he wearing glasses?”
“Very simple,” she said. “Our pets are us when we’re at our most vulnerable.”
Sometimes Katherine’s explanations come in words or concepts too large for me to understand. I have only a bachelor’s degree. I asked “What the heck does that mean?”
“It means Coffee is you,” she said. “And you are Coffee.”
I don’t know if this is important, but later, when a roofing salesman rang the doorbell, I barked and was shushed by Katherine. I retreated with my tail between my legs to the man cave where I found Coffee playing my banjo. I curled up on the rug and took a nap until dinner.
©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013, all rights reserved