Now it’s porcupine quills on Elm Street.

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At this rate, my subconscious will surely run out of unsavory circumstances intended to disrupt my sleep.  Seems I’d only just rung the last drops of “Impossibly Huge Tsunami Dream”seawater from my socks, when more madness ensued. 

Now we’re dealing with porcupines.  Technically not porcupines.  A single porcupine.  And technically not the actual porcupine itself, but the quills. Last night I dreamt that our 4 year-old family black Lab, named “Wailea” in more blissful times, rolled into the house like a pin cushion.  I was going to infringe the copyright on a Google photo image of a dog with a snout full of quills, but those images were unsettlingly close to my not-quite-faded nightmare. So I chose to infringe on the considerably less frightening image above.  This little critter doesn’t look so scary, right?

I’ve never pulled a porcupine quill from a dog, as far as I can recall.  And I think I would recall something like that.  But in my “dream,” there was one quill in particular that I was never able to pull from Wailea’s forehead.  (Hopefully this does not mean I will return to the quills tonight.) This quill was approximately the length of an unused yellow number 2 pencil.  I yanked on it a couple times by pinching my fingers and thumb together.  No dice.  And Wailea protested loudly as I flailed.  So there we are again — some thorny (pun intended, I suppose) problem that I cannot solve despite my best efforts.  And my inability to fix the problem is causing great pain to something/someone I love and for whom(?) I am responsible.

So I searched all over Breitbart News for “removing porcupine quills from my dog’s nose,” but just couldn’t come up with anything relevant.  Actually, I didn’t do that at all.  But if I had done this in my nightmare, well, I don’t even know where to start on that.

I also dreamt — and I this was a separate and distinct dream as I recall — that I was trying to find a spot in San Francisco Bay for a quick swim. My normal swimming spots, for some reason I didn’t see any of those at all.  They all seemed to be gone, as if they were never there in the first place. So I kept trying to slide in in odd locations.  Once awkwardly traipsing through a picnicking group at the water’s edge.  The picnickers were justifiably annoyed.  And probably confused.  Because it was also nighttime, and a strange time for a swim in the Bay.  (Forget for a moment that maybe they chose an odd time for a picnic.  This is my nightmare, not theirs.)  And their aggravation was enhanced because they likely knew one key fact that I would only discover a moment or two later, as I stepped off the shore:  The water was roughly as deep as my ankles.  But at this point, having rudely disrupted their midnight feast, I had no choice, really.  I had to lie down on my belly.  Hold my breath in a weird, panicky way.  Extend my arms and legs and somehow float out to deeper water.  And of course there was no deeper water to be had. I was beyond embarrassed, as this ridiculous scene played out right in front of the dining companions. I don’t have any idea how this situation ultimately ended; I believe my subconscious let me off the hook (for once) and dropped the curtain before things got any more damaging to my fragile ego.

What in the wide wide world of sports is going on here?  Restaurant tidal waves? Smug porcupine quills behaving like gag, relighting birthday candles?  Swimming in mud puddles?  At this point, I don’t even have any quaint and reassuring means of wrapping up this particular blog post.  No immediately obvious way to whip up some lemonade from these here lemons.

Instead, I’m plain old on edge as to what exactly my sadistic brain stem, thalamus and cortex will dig up for entertainment during tonight’s REM sleep.  Something’s gotta give, before I wake up on Elm Street.

Thanks for reading.  

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