20:12 - Wednesday, Feb. 04, 2004 redundancy
student comment today in anthropology recitation, discussing the author of our textbook:
'she's kind of redundant.... she says the same thing multiple different times.'
22:42 - Monday, Feb. 02, 2004 an unsolved mystery
sunday morning i woke up from less than four hours of sleep and watched nick spring out of bed like he was made out of.. like, springs. i tried to watch morning cartoons with him, but i couldn't keep my eyes open. my face kept falling into my carton of yogurt and i couldn't peel my banana right. eventually, i gave up. 'i'm going back to sleep,' i told him.
i got the best hour and a half of sleep i've ever gotten, stretched out in my bed that was all mine and the covers that were also all mine. but when i wake up, i start feeling very very off. almost exactly like being stoned... the whole mindwarp part, and i keep forgetting what i'm doing and saying things that sound like they come from somewhere else entirely; dreamland or a work of fiction or an acid trip. but not reality. i mumble at nick when he wakes me up some shit about having to dress the gummi bears. despite my better judgment, i agree to go to the egg and i for breakfast.
i get dressed and stumble down the five flights of stairs, holding the railing. the hallway passes me by in slow-mo. i’m telling nick the story of the diet bacon ladies (don't ask) and there are two people carrying a table down the stairs in front of us. at the bottom, the guy turns around. ‘what language was that?’ he asks me.
‘what language was what?’ i return.
‘what you were just speaking,’ he says.
‘um,’ i say, slowly, slower than my usual conversation speed, ‘english.’
he makes a few excuses about what he thought he heard, but i don’t hear him. it just confirms my suspicions that i'm going insane. nick and i walk faster and faster so we can burst into laughter safely out of earshot.
‘i feel weird,’ nick says in the back lot of wild oats.
‘why?’ i ask. ‘i mean, i don’t mean why, i mean how.’ i feel weird too. obviously. but i haven't told him that yet. i feel surreal, like none of this is actually happening.
‘i feel surreal,’ he says. 'like none of this is actually happening.'
that almost cements it. ‘maybe we’re dreaming,’ i suggest.
he holds his hands out, studies them for a second, like he does when he doesn't know whether he's dreaming, and then recoils. ‘oh my god,’ he exclaims. ‘they look really weird.’
they don’t look weird to me, but that’s because i’m afraid to look. i don't want to see gnarled alien hands. it just gets stranger the more time passes. the egg and i is like a scene from pleasantville, as nick puts it. everything is oddly happy, like nothing could go wrong. it is full of college students returning from parties or recovering from one-night stands, but it almost feels like the fifties. we get the last table for two and talk in a haze, in a mist of nonsense. i can handle the waitress because i have practice handling waitresses high, and this is pretty much the same thing.
'if we're dreaming,' i say, 'we can do whatever we want right now.'
'whoa,' he says, staring at me. 'i'm not sure enough for that.' he stares at his plate and peels a container of apple butter, sticks his finger in, licks it off.
'what are you doing?' i ask him.
he looks up slowly. 'i'm eating apple butter. it tastes like barbecue sauce.' he shrugs. ‘maybe we’re actually at your house in bed together right now having the same dream,’ he proposes.
‘or maybe it’s just one of our dreams,’ i say.
‘well, it could be yours. i feel like i might not be real. it’s entirely plausible that i’m a figment in your dream. i kind of feel like i could easily be a dream figment.’
‘i’m going to see if i can change you with the power of my mind,’ he says, and stares at me for awhile, during which time the waitress comes and we order something to share.
he can’t change me, so i try changing him. i can’t do it.
‘if i were dreaming, i’d strip naked and run around this restaurant right now,’ i tell him.
he laughs uproariously like stripping naked in dreams isn’t cliched. ‘you know what i’d do? i’d lay down on the floor right here.’ he points to the carpet next to our table.
‘and go to sleep?’
‘no, i’d just lay there until our food came. all peaceful.’
we both eat like we’re high. the food tastes better than heaven. we speculate as to whether someone came into our room at night and put lsd in the glass of water we had, or on our pillows mixed with dmso. i honestly can't describe what the feeling was like. enough like being stoned that i can't believe i didn't just smoke a bowl.
‘what if i feel high forever?’ i ask him.
‘well, would that be bad?’ he asks me back.
i reflect. 'yes,' i say tentatively. 'yes. sometimes when you're lying in bed at the end of the day and your mind won't shut up... every thought you have is picked up and shaken mercilessly in every direction.. yeah. it would be bad.
it takes fifteen minutes of watching the super bowl to get us feeling normal again. i'm almost sad to see it go.