Today was one of those days while driving down the I-5 freeway, my tired brain thought I left my car keys at the last appointment. For two long seconds, I had a panic patting my pockets–“Where are my keys?!” moment. Effin’ ridiculous. I wonder if I’m getting enough sleep. I’m not sure about sleep, but I’m getting waaaaay too much rest.
The other day I read that many people are continuing to have strange dreams, “Pandemic Dreams”. Dreams about being unable to get the simplest thing completed; walking through a maze-like existence, experiencing some sort of repetitive behavior that increases anxiety. In October of 2020, the magazine Scientific American explains we are having more dreams because we are resting more which equals more REM sleep.
“Relaxed schedules may also have caused dreaming to occur later than usual in the morning, when REM sleep is more prevalent and intense and, thus, dreams are more bizarre. Dream-tweets reflect these qualities: “I was taking care of a newborn girl that had COVID … it was so vivid and real.” Increased dreaming during late-morning REM intervals results from the convergence of several processes. Sleep itself cycles through deep and light stages about every 90 minutes, but pressure for REM sleep gradually increases as the need for deep, recuperative sleep is progressively satisfied. Meanwhile, a circadian process that is tightly linked to our 24-hour core body temperature rhythm gives an abrupt boost to REM sleep propensity late in the sleep period and stays elevated through the morning.“
As a single woman, working two essential jobs, living in a small apartment…my dreams are a bit different. I’m not dreaming about bugs attacking me or social distancing faux pas in the soup aisle. I’m dreaming about celebrities sliding into my bed and hugging me, saying witty things. Last week Jimmi Simpson (left) kept me laughing and calm with some stories & huggies in bed. This week Mr. Jason Sudeikis (right) joined me for a little pillow talk. He was so warm and kind. We just laid in bed and talked. I know you are seeing someone Jason, my subconscious means no disrespect to your lady, but you are a pretty good snuggle bunny.
I look forward to the gym reopening and, like, being able to hug people again, you know the whole spectrum of touching and standing next to people. Touching surfaces like exercise bikes, armrests in the movie theater, shake a hand “hello”, hug a friend goodbye, but–I will never go bowling again.
Times are tough. Not for everyone all the time. There is a proverb that claims it rains on the just and unjust alike. Most proverbs reference a farmer’s point of view, so I believe “rain” is a good thing, it’s what you want, it’s pennies from heaven.
At times when very little rain comes my way, I like to dream. I dream big. Hard work pays off, I retire, can afford a nice house. Nice by MY standards, of course, because it’s my dream.
One of my dreams goes like this: I see myself in a large house, with a flower garden. My family is there, my two cats and one friendly, soft-eared black Spaniel, or King Charles (can’t decide) is resting near me as I dead-head the Geranium and Petunias planted along the bed’s border. The sun is shining and there is a cool breeze. Birds play in the branches. Dinner will be ready soon; there is laughter, music and great fragrance of a home cooked meal. All kind of art hangs my on walls, interesting, exciting pieces collected from my world travels. Shoes gather around the front door, as the house fills, comfortably, with friends, family, smiles and laughter.
I’m saying “Thank You” and “I love you” sharing the riches of my hard work with those I love. —Hard work? Yes. Unless I win the lotto, this dream can only come true by working hard, working smarter, hopefully doing something that I love.
And so when times are down, I look and see what is for sale on-line. I search the Windermere Real Estate map, zoom to a favorite neighborhood, select price “highest to lowest”, then “Enter”. The house-porn party has started!
I look for a four to six bedroom, with an art studio, den, and a place for a pool table, modern kitchen and baths, a REAL laundry room, closet space galore, and at least one large fireplace, stacked rock, river rock or granite preferred. I need room enough for my son, daughter, mother, my brother and his family to visit, a bed for everyone! A house with a water or mountain view, a fenced yard, among a nice “walking” neighborhood, near a grocery store, quick access to the main roads and a park. That’s all I want. Simple. The perfect house.
I wonder sometimes if my need to view million dollar homes at 3 in the morning is bad; if it gives me false hope. If I set the bar too high.
The average cost for a home in my city is around $267,000, estimated median household income in 2012: $41,718*. Dreaming of owning a million dollar plus home is reaching for the sky! So, is it bad for me to look? Bad to dream? I don’t think so.
Let me share a story with you.
Back in the early 00’s I worked for the largest cable company in Western Washington. Comcast Cable has customers in the millions, from Blaine to Gray’s Harbor, North Bend to Forks. One of the ideas they were playing with was home-specific advertising.
This is a common concept for internet advertising today, 12 years later. To see user-specific advertising in action compare the ads on your Facebook page with that of a friend, son or daughter, or your mother. They WILL be different.
For cable television it’s a bit different. Cable boxes have the capacity to not only deliver the package you paid for, but to retrieve information. All the buttons you push turn into data, it is collected and analyzed. Cable and satellite companies, unlike their broadcasting cousins, know exactly how many boxes watch what channel, what show, when and where. So with this data, for a brief time, experiments were done on box or home specific advertising.
Based on your personal data it is determined that you could afford a Mercedes Benz, local Mercedes Benz lots would send their ads to your cable box, inserted onto the channels you watch, potentially saving MB money by targeting the “right kind” of client.
If your credit card data showed that you ordered pizza delivery more than average, then pizza advertisements for companies near you that deliver, would appear on your TV.
Advertising that reacts to your current habits and buying abilities within the parameters of your demographic. Boring.
Sitting in the beta results meeting, I remember thinking that box-specific advertising was wrong. It was wrong to deny people a “Goldilocks” experience; finding out whats too small, too big or just right for them.
What It Really Means
Dreams are not a demographic, they are more like a fingerprint. A hungry person, on a tight budget, might dream about food, but what do they really need? A Marie Callender Pot Pie? NO! (Well, maybe, those are good!) That person may need a nicer car that starts every morning, to help get a job that pays better, but dreams of going to school to get a better job, a better life.
How much influence does the media have on our dreams? Should we use things as rewards?
Is material attainment symbolic of the journey?
What are YOUR dreams?
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt
“We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.” ~Jesse Owens
“All [people] dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous [people], for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.” ~T. E. Lawrence