.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Fermius Firefly

A Dream Log, whenever I remember the dreams I've had.

My Photo
Location: San Marcos, United States

Fermius is a pen name drawn from a series of short fiction I wrote when I published the small press magazine Stellanova (on paper.) I play RPG games to escape from my daily grind as a technology wage slave for the state of California. I eat out a lot in order to do my part in supporting our increasingly service level economy. I am butler to 2 feline masters. If you ask them they will tell you I'm not very good at it, late with dinner, don't have enough hands with brushes in them, and sometimes I even lock them out of their office.

Sunday, July 31, 2005

Four for One Night

Flirting With Squeaks at Re-Faire
(Don't remember anything more than that at this point.)
Lost in the Construction on I-15.
Ok, this is a repeat of the dream with the small red monocycle type vehicle, but this time in the Insight. The cones weren't laid out clearly enough for me, so I made a wrong turn into the dirt construction zone alongside the freeway. I took some photos of the construction equipment while I was there, but couldn't seem to find a smooth enough road out of the place and the construction foreman didn't want me to back out the way I came in, even though I thought I could make it back to the shoulder and onto the correct detour without too much trouble.
Outsmarting the Robotic Habical Police.
This was a Gremlin Trouble sort of dream. For some reason the habical police were coming to throw me out of my cube. When they arrived, I asked them if I was under arrest.
"Of course not. You are just being evicted."
"Would I then become vagrant?" I asked.
"Of course."
"Then wouldn't you have to arrest me?"
"No, we would just return you to your habical."
"But I don't have a habical, you have just evicted me."
At this point a neighbor walked over to visit. "You have the newest VR enclosure?"
"Want to trade, I understand you don't really use it much."
"Citizens, return to your habicals, there is nothing to see here."
"All of his books are in my habical," said my neighbor.
"Yes, now my books and me are vagrant."
"He can have my habical on the corner," piped up my neighbor.
"Right, then, lets get this lot moved out." And with that backup arrived and helped move all my books and equipment to the corner habical with the windows overlooking the park. My neighbor grabbed a small closet module and rolled it over to my old cubical.
"You have been evicted and returned to your proper cubical, have a nice day," said the robot police unit with a definitely sarcastic but satisfied tone. "Thank you for being cooperative."
"OK, I'm glad everyone is happy." I smiled and waved so as not to be cited for rudeness. Oddly enough, I think I had so much vr time on the books that I don't imagine that I could be hooked up the rest of my life and not be connected. Everything I published or created that someone else linked to created a VR connection bonus. Every infraction created a VR deficit. Of course, the only infractions I ever committed consisted of not being connected to the VR subsystem when I was supposed to, so I was typically set to forfit only the time I has already banked by not using it. Apparently some people were able to remain in VR while sleeping and ate up some of their 16 hours a day VR ration in that fashion. I went out for walks and trips to the book storage facilities instead, so had many months worth of VR set aside, that's why I had been upgraded to the newest VR habical. Conversely I didn't use the newest VR enclosure enough, so that's why I was being evicted.
Habical Repairs
In a Gremlin Trouble meets Brazil moment, I couldn't get anyone to come and make repairs to my cleaning unit (clothing and dishes) so had to undertake them myself. I returnedfrom a trip to the technology dump with a set of utility tools someone had just left lying around. (Thank you Gremlins for cleaning them up so nicely.) I really don't remember much about the repair, only that I had to dump out all of the tool tips to find a small flat head tip that went into the small collett, but then didn't have a small flathead tip to tighten the collett nut....

On a side note, I haven't been having enough scantily clad women in my dreams lately. Who do I talk to about that?

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Sci Fi Friday Review

Spent many hours in front of the television (http://www.scifi.com/) Friday night, and that time was directly reflected in my dreams with the addition of one feature. I was on the top of one of the Galactica's landing bays with Nan and a bunch of the cats. We were trying to catalog a large number of items from the history of the world along with several other folks. I wasn't sure why I would be involved in such a project. Besides who could hope to make any sort of useful decisions when we only had a couple museums worth of stuff to chose from. The rest of the world was apparently under Cylon control, or we were Cylon hybrids, or some such. (My pet feeling for what we discover on finding Earth in the new Galactic series.)

We had to take sudden evasive action to dodge a torpedo. Not sure where that came from. T-Rex jumped over the rail and fell about 5 stories. I rushed to the rail, afraid to look. He had landed on the flight deck. Apparently the crash shield slowed him down. Then he gathered himself up and looked up with a meow and leapt, sailing easily up to the observation platform. Talented cat. I didn't know he could fly. He rubbed around my feet and flop and rolled for attention as if to say, "How cool was that, dad cat?" I was just glad he was OK.

I noticed a pattern here in that my early evening dreams tend to be a review of recent events, experiences. It is the second or third dreams of the night that result in the wilder more detailed sort of dreams.

ad astra per technica

Friday, July 29, 2005

Welcome Back Kiss and Rendering the Island Train

Went back to work where I ran into an old friend I used to work with. Was quite startled by the hello hug and kiss. Not that that would be out of character for her.

Later I was dreaming of rendering the Island Train, a dream train that connects the North and South shores of a recurring dream location. The dream had me struggling with Blender, no surprise, I had just downloaded it and spent about 3 hours figuring out how to draw and render a 16 faced marble column. Somehow I can't seem to get the darned thing to stop being magenta!

Ad Astra per Technica

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Working During a Blustery Day

I was visiting the High School campus where I used to work, checking on the location of Switches for the LAN and generally looking at the renovations. (Which are going on as I write this.) I was commenting to the group I was with that I still would have liked to see a two story Library with computer labs on the second floor. One of the people said they'd changed the plans, but dashed my hopes by saying that the admin offices were now going to be two floors.

As we headed up to the admin offices (still under construction) the sky turned almost black, and the wind began to blow. Soon doors were being slammed shut and students were being tumbled about. We managed to hold open the E building doors and pull several students to safety inside. Just as we got the last bunch of kids to cover, the wind knocked my feet from under me. I didn't hit the ground, however, I was being lifted up by the air, like lying on a mattress. By angling my calves and feet like rudders I was able to make a series of stalls and climbs while moving forward through the hall. I didn't know what would happen when I got to the end of the building out from under the soffet. I doubted that I would be able to make it to the front of the school, but felt like I had to try.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Snowplowing the Unnamed City

I was in Antarctica, operating a big snowcat with a snowplow, more of a snow chewer and blower. I had just finished clearing the camp and runway. Still running at full tilt, I suddenly saw a city in the distance. I drove out to it and began clearing the streets. My followup crew kept yelling at me to go back but I was compelled to finish what I had begun. There were massive stone structures that sometimes bridged the road I was clearing. Many of the buildings did seem empty and sad, but more than a few had light in the upper windows and occasionally I saw movement. These buildings have been buried almost completely by the snow. I ignored the radio messages an plowed on for several hours, until the fuel in the snowcat ran out, and I began to freeze despite my heavy gear. As I got colder and colder the beings began to move about the city, eyeing the large yellow tractor suspiciously. Eventually they began to move towards me, smaller ones, children I suppose racing through the streets, gathering the piled snow in their middle arms and tossing it around. I heard the Whup! Whup! of a helicopter and the creatures drew back as the cat was lifted into the air. I could see the five mile by three mile semicircle of oddly web-like streets from the air. I could hear the adults and children below scraping their legs and vibrating their wings in what could only have been applause. A strange, disquieting, buzzing applause, but applause none-the-less. As I spun around under the helicopter I struggled to look back, but there was only the web of streets in the snow, and a few shadowed shapes of building foundations and low walls. Fading shapes flying along behind, that I know weren't just the ice falling off of the snowcat.

Can you tell that I have been reading HP Lovecraft inspired fiction lately? Oh, and that Nan or the cats stole all the covers again.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Morning Muddle

This is another of those mornings where so much was going on in my head it was relaxing to wake up. No specific plots or characters remain. Images of sliding down the ivy covered hill in the back. Setting large stones in the ground next to the house, several of the cats made their way through the images. On top of it all driving rock and roll squealing guitar sound track. (The cessation of which was great joy.)

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Image test

If this works correctly, this should be the spider mech and trex test illustration for the previous post.

Cecil the Spacesick Satellite, CIB

This is the first time I've dreamed of Cecil, the '69 Plymouth Satellite since we sold it last week. It is the first time I have dreamed of it where I wasn't driving it. Instead of its new owner, though, it was being driven by my brother, Dave.
He had managed to get it running with my help and while he was test driving it around the mountain he picked up a hitchhiker who wanted to come to the house and meet the ghosts. She was Claudia Black, but since Dave doesn't really follow science fiction he didn't recognize her. She claimed her accent was because she was from Moline, Kansas.
"Um, right" I said. I could tell that she could tell that I recognized her. I called T-Rex to take her up to the house.
"Oh! you even have a black cat, well mostly. This should be fun."
T-Rex looked at me with a "do I have to" look and I just nodded. He cooed at her and started up to the house.
We were getting ready for a costume party, so I had filled the back of the Insight and Nan came out of the house. "Is that Claudia Black?"
"I think so."
We took off to the party, asking Dave to take her where she needed before heading home.
We arrived at times, and shortly after we got everything delivered for the party Cecil came screeching around the corner. Dave zoomed by the party. I jumped out to the curb and shouted and waved. He spotted me and turned around. I guided him in like guiding in an aircraft. Claudia jumped out of the passenger side, shaking. Shouting.
"They're real! They're real, how'd you do that!"
"T-Rex took you into the red and black velvet hall, didn't he? What did you do to piss him off?"
That brought her up short. "I might have called him stupid," she admitted.
I could tell it was more than that. "You swore at him, didn't you? He hates that. Oh, well, no harm done, I don't think any of them followed you."
"What!" she squealed and ducked under my arm, looking around for signs of ghosts.
Dave laughed and waved good bye. Cecil rumbled to life and accelerated away.
Nan waved from the front of Mike's house then made her way down to us.
"What's going on here?" she asked, but smiling.
"Lets see if we can get Claudia a drink, she's had a tour of the hall."
"How do you know my name?"
"Accent, met you at Comic-Con in San Diego, watching you on television for years." I didn't add that this was my dream....
"Oh, I didn't realize these worlds connected."

Just a note, the haunted house is a reccuring location, I inherited it when I was in my mid twenties, I'm not certain who, but suspect from my Uncle Ben. It has many residents who are non corporeal, most of whom are harmless or even helpful, the upstairs maid for example. There are a few spirits who can be dangerous if you don't belong there, and there is one hallway that has a very angry spirit that doesn't like women at all. It is confined to a little
used hallway that is decorated in black and red velvet wallpaper with a mirror on one end of the hall and a half dozen gas lamps on each wall. There is a set of double doors opposite the mirrors that leads into what is now the main hallway of the house. All but two of the six rooms that originally fed off this hallway have doors opening into other parts of the house. One of those two rooms is my favorite study, middle door on the left. The other, opposite the study, is full of very creepy stuff collected from around the dreamscape by previous residents. I don't even like to go in there, and rarely alone. Despite the fact that I have had all of the furniture and anything loose removed from the hall, the spirit in that room always seems to find something I have missed to throw at women who enter alone. Nan doesn't enter this hallway anymore, even if I'm there with her. I suspect that if you close the double doors while you are in the hallway you can walk through the mirror and access another 6 rooms. I haven't tried that yet.

After feeding Cats and Fish at 5:30 then returning to bed. I dreamed that
T-Rex and I were hunting down a person who'd just knocked out a woman at a very western looking town fair. T-Rex tracked him into a shop. I let out a mechanical spider (about 18 inches around with a tennis ball sized body.) I heard a crash from inside the machine shop. I jumped in just in time to see a vampire looking fellow, very large, like the smith in Diablo II, smash the
spider. I took out another one when T-Rex leapt at the monster, showing his Special agent ID badge on his collar. The Vampire laughed, until T-Rex clawed his way up to the creature's neck and lashed him with a tranquilizer claw.
The creature tossed T-Rex towards a pile of junk. My spider mech stretched itself across the junk and caught T-Rex, tangling its legs as they fell to the ground with a soft plop. The creature staggered around.
I had a large claw hammer that I used to block its blows. There was a can of gasoline on the counter next to the creature where he collapsed. I opened it up with the claw hammer fully intending to douse the creature and light it on fire. I heard commotion from outside. T-Rex was un-tangling the spider mech's legs for it and so I ran outside to see what was going on.
The obviously undead townspeople were making their way towards where there was a woman on the ground and a female sheriff's deputy. "I think she's dead."
I held up my badge as she aimed her weapon at me. The woman on the ground opened her eyes and looked around terrified. "Special Agents, we need to get her out of here, now!" T-Rex was Meow-ow-owing for all he was worth. I think he'd had his fill of the undead. The deputy aimed her gun at T-Rex, I thought at first but realized he was running three legged holding out his badge. The spider mech. "The spider is mine, too, it will cover our escape." I picked up the blonde victom, and put her in a firman's carry. "Let's get going." I whistled at the same time as the deputy.
The deputy's horse came whinnying around the corner. "At least mine is
There was a loud rumble, and a pair of giant spider legs arced over the stables, one had a lift basket descending from it. "Mine isn't exactly a horse."
"Oh, shi...."
"Quickly, deputy" I said as I put the woman in the basket and strapped her in. I had a bad feeling about her still open and staring at nothing expression, but I wasn't quite ready to give up on her. We'd know at day-break.
T-Rex had already raced up the steps formed into the other spider leg. My small mechanical spider was racing back and forthe across the street paying out silk cord. The first line of townspeople tripped and went down.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


I was visiting my parents' home just outside the Dream City. The neighborhood is older, a little overgrown with tree branches arching out over the streets. The houses are eclectic mixes of on and two story homes without any common architectural themes. Even in the dream world the house is raspberry sherbet pink with maroon trim. I was just packing up with Dad to go shooting when we heard explosions and gunfire outside. The radio indicated that there had been an alien incursion, their airships had landed in the village square and they were marching out from there, already having taken over the strip malls and burning the library. (Those bastards!) They were radiating out from there into the suburbs in what looked like an attempt to cut off our little community. The local sheriff was coordinating the resistance. The invasion seemed to be limited to just this community, and the aliens had no idea about jamming radio or TV, and certainly nothing about phones. We unpacked the deer guns and reported to the Eleventy Seven store on the corner. (There was much looking about and adjusting the barrel on the .306 as it didn't seem to be on straight to me.) We took up positions just behind a ridge in a park. Alien yellow sprays of high energy plasma started falling around us and knocking branches off the trees over our heads. I could hear the machinery in the woods across the park, but couldn't see anything.

"What am I supposed to be shooting at?" I asked.

"You'll know when you see it!" responded the sheriff.

Unfortunately, we couldn't see them until blasts of alien Yellow burst from the distant tree line.

"Now that's some camouflage!" I shouted as I ducked behind some artistically placed rocks. I remember thinking that I couldn't usually hit anything in these sort of dreams anyway so loaded five rounds into the rifle and fired at where I heard the sounds coming from, or at the origin of the alien yellow blasts. The latter seemed to work as three smallish explosions followed each shot at the source of the blasts. I told the rest of our patrol what I'd aimed at. "Because you know I can't seem to hit a living creature directly with this thing." My Dad and the sheriff, who seemed to know me (friend of my Dad's) laughed and switched to shotguns. Their four barrels of shot spread out along the tree line (it was about a third of a mile away) and there were two more sets of explosions. The sound of machinery stopped advancing and began to withdraw.

When they left the trees I could see them where they bumped onto the road. Listening carefully I watched for the soil to be disturbed and then lead the spot. It was strange shooting at empty air, but the first shot struck something and ripples of distortion highlighted a stubby tanklike vehicle. It had a glassy looking dome on the back that had a barrel structure sticking out of it. It swivled our way. I put a couple of rounds into it and shouted for everyone to run back. The rocks exploded behind me, one fragment smacked me in the lower back and forced me down to the ground behind the ridge. Large alien yellow blasts cut through the trees over our head and then there was a massive explosion, but not here, down by the road.

The sheriff climbed about 15 yards to the left of our position and up to the edge with binoculars. "There's three wrecks on the road, you must have hit something important. How much ammo do you have left."

"490," I had only fired ten rounds, and I'd brought about 500 rounds with me. "But there's about two thousand rounds made up."

"You wouldn't happen to have another 'deer' rifle like that would you?" the sheriff asked my Dad. "Looks like you're our sniper, then. Let's go get some more tanks."

"If we have to make them shoot at us as part of the plan, I'm not so sure this is a good idea." I managed to get up despite the knots in my back. I looked down the barrel of the rifle, it looked like it had been straightened out. "We need some diversions, and everyone has to be able to make it to cover, or we're toast," I swept my arm back towards the blasted trees that were still steaming on the ground behind us and in front of us. It had the sobering effect I wanted.

The sheriff's radio made a low beep then he quickly keyed the mike until he got the headphone plugged in. There was no fire from the road below, though. "They've been pulling back to the mall. It looks like you put the fear of God into them." He then proceeded to give whoever was on the other end an update on what we'd discovered. "It looks like the Guard is on it's way."

"About time," someone said, maybe me. I passed out and woke up in bed.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Too Hot

The outside temperature and inside were nearly the same. I crept into the hot tub, normally at 97 while resting, was already 98 degrees, it was still cooler than outside, even a couple of the cats, Peepers and T-Rex, climbed into the water and paddled across to me. They got out and went to sit in the shade to cool down. I just stayed in the tub letting the half a degree difference pull the heat out of me while I put my hands and feet out into the breeze for a little evaporative cooling. I thought about getting some ice for the tub, but figured I'd have to get out and move too much to accomplish that task.

Woke up with all 6 of the indoor cats piled on or around me. No one has to wonder where this dream comes from. Weather service is predicting this will be the hottest day this summer. There's another reason.

I had a dream earlier, but it was so disjointed I couldn't come up with a title for it (That I remember) so it is lost to the dreamscape.

Ad astra per technica

The previous two day's worth of dreams are recorded in a sketch book, I will try to get them up here when I have time.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Burning Down the (Beach) House Penelope and the Marbles

Off the coast of the dream city, there is a large sand bar with several beach houses lined up along the contours of the dunes. I was with Scott and Bob, who I met at Comic Con, and we were just getting ready to load our stuff into the beach house when I noticed the sulfur smell of natural gas. I stepped back down the stairs with my bag and said "Rotten eggs, or gas, either way I don't think we want to put everything in there until we air it out."

I was opening the windows from outside when there was a loud FWUMP! And then the flames shot out over my head and out every window and door. Everyone was OK. The beach house made a lovely bonfire, and the neighbors all came out to see what was going on.

In one of the kitchens of the haunted house is an island with several canisters. (There are three kitchens, one not used because it is, well, haunted. The other is completely devoid of fixtures, having been renovated into another purpose at one time or another and only recently have we started to turn it back into a kitchen (It is a little smaller and more central.) One of our deceased cats, Her Majesty Penelope Anastasia Flufferdoodle the First, was playing in the kitchen and "accidentally knocked a jar of marbles on to the floor. She leapt down and (I wish I had video of the speed at which her paws used to move) began to flash around the floor batting the marbles into a frenzy of clattering motion. Eventually every marble on the floor was moving and Penelope was teleporting as well and using her flying feline fists of fury attack to keep everything moving all at once. I noticed she had them all rolling towards the island and she stopped and dropped and rolled at my feet for a head bonk.

We used to refer to her as a house dragon, even though that fluffy white belly was plush and inviting, you were risking your flesh if you tried to pet her without the proper preparation. "You may rub my head now," was her motto.

Ad astra per technica,
FF and
Her Royal Highness Ginger Muffin Flufferdoodle the Second (who graciously supervised this entry.)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Driving the Bus, Sprocket Science goes Solid State

I was driving the large yellow school bus again, still along the coastal route. I was still worried that I didn't have a license to drive a bus, but at least there were no passengers this time.

Afterwards, I found myself working in an elementary school classroom, setting up a video projector and a powerpoint presentation for a teacher. I was explaining that this used to be "Sprocket Science (TM)" and was now simple solid state. OK, the kids in the dream didn't laugh, but the teacher did. She, at least, was old enough to remember 35mm half frame filmstrip and 16mm movie projectors. We tried to explain it to the kids, but finally had to give up. The teacher asked if I could come back and explain how cartoons worked, and we could make flip books.

ad astra per technica

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Snowy Cabin, Cowboy Frame Up, and two short ones.

Snowy Summer Cabin

This is a house I have dreamed about before. It is about two thirds of the way up the mountains on either side of a valley. There is a small lake and a strip mall in the floor of the valley. A two lane road goes through the valley on either end, and narrow blacktop roads wind their way through the hills on either side. Every few hundred yards or so, until you get about halfway up the mountain, is a small house. Up by where we live, the houses are sometimes a half mile or more apart. The house is a two story house, the bottom is a greatroom in the front with bookcases on either side, a walkway into the back kitchen/dining area on the right and a water closet on the left, both under the stairwells that flank a huge fireplace and eventually lead to the second floor. The master bedroom is over the entryway, with a loft overlooking the greatroom. The hallways have railings on top of short bookcases on the left and right of the great room and lead back to the other two bedrooms, which we had set up as offices. The two smaller bedrooms were connected around the back of the house by a small covered patio that has a path, with five or six switchbacks, leading down the hillside into the carport, which was directly below the front of the house. The back of the house rests on the mountainside, and the front is hanging out over the carport on four giant steel stilts covered with stone work. To the left, as you look at the house from the street below, there is a greenhouse that rests partly on the mountain and partly on stilts. The pathway between the two is either across a narrow bridge, or down the stairs from the house to a landing and then up some stairs to the greenhouse. I have a really cheesy drawing that I will scan in and post some day.

I was out on the greenhouse porch when I looked out over the green and silver valley with the blacktop road just visible through the trees on the mountain across the way. The lake in the valley was gray, reflecting the gray skies overhead. I noticed it was snowing. I went out along the porch in front of the greenhouse and grabbed a flake on the back of my gardening glove.

I ran into the house to grab the camera. Little John and Chloe looked up from their cat toys and stared at me as though I was insane, you could see them thinking about whether to run or not. I excitedly showed off the melting snowflake, it was nearly an inch and a half across. By the time I had raced upstairs and back down again with the camera the snow had begun to turn into rain. “You missed it!” I snapped a photo of the melting snowflake and a couple out the window and headed out onto the porch to see if there was some snow that hadn't melted yet. I grabbed a couple of shots before the rain washed it all away. I then took shelter under the house, in the carport. I snapped a few more shots of the rain falling across the valley. I watched the surface of the lake become flat from the impact of the rain, and then a minute or two later watched the parking lot turn into a rectangular image of the lake. I could see the rowboats beating frantically to the dock, except for a couple, and I could see the yellow rain gear coming out from under the seats, and the fishing poles never left their sockets. I laughed when I saw one of our neighbors slip the worm can under the seat of the rowboat, but I guess you don't want your bait to drown before you use it.

Cowboy Frame Up

I was sort of in the old west. Or the not so old west, I suppose, as the dream started with me approaching a middle aged woman in a dark Victorian outfit, high collar, hair in a bun, the works. I asked her if she'd heard anything recently about a rash of bicycle thefts. Next thing you know, I'm being smacked upside the head with a bag full of dirt. I never saw it coming and never expected such a slender thing to pack such a wallop. I dropped my pencil and pad as I hugged the earth.

I awoke to the sound of fire burning nearby. I was on the ground outside a settler's wagon. It was turned on its side and burning merrily away. I saw a couple of crumpled forms on the ground. I was in a hat, not mine, had a red bandanna across my face and a gun belt strapped to my waist. I am at the scene of a murder robbery, and I can see the dust cloud of the posse approaching in the distance. I heard a low moan. Behind me is a young woman in a yellow calico dress and bonnet. She was still alive, but bleeding from the arm and leg. I pulled off the bandanna and bandaged her arm, telling her to keep the pressure on it to stop the bleeding. I pulled up her skirt to look at her leg. She yelped a little, but relaxed when she saw the blood. I pulled off the checkered shirt and bandaged her thigh as best I could. I elevated her leg as best I could and checked on the rest of the family. They were not as fortunate as her. I brought out as much from the wagon as I could and set about to make the woman comfortable.

I looked up at the approaching posse and she spoke, startling me, “Don't worry mister, I saw 'em drop you off and buckle that rig on you.”

“Thanks,” I said, but I wasn't too sure she'd make it that long. I tightened the bandage on her thigh, the blood seemed to be stopping, hopefully not because she was out of it.

“If I live, you're going to have to marry me.”

“You just live first, we'll talk about marrying later.”

The posse arrived, and though she was almost ready to faint again she managed to talk them out of gunning me down. It seems someone in town had tipped them off that I was out to rob some poor settlers. The woman described what she had seen. I told them my part in it, what I knew. I could tell one of the deputies wasn't buying it. But her testimony went a long way in convincing them not to go looking for a tree.

“If'n they had bicycles, they's gone,” said one of the posse.

“We had four of them, and four oxen.”

“I'm sorry ma'am, they killed the oxen, too.”

For the first time she started to cry, then suddenly passed out. We put her on a deputy's horse and the posse raced back towards town with her. The deputy and I picked up what we could and started walking back to town. He gave me back the gun, “Just in case.” I didn't like the sound of that.

Cat Tail

Domino (recently passed away) jumped up into bed with us. His tail and backside were full of slugs and earth worms. (This is usually a T-Rex trick.) He got in a head bonk and then went and laid down at the foot of the bed. This was both disturbing, and somehow, reassuring. I woke up and there were no cats at the foot of the bed, they were wedged in between us. Fortunately no slugs or worms either.

Watching Finances.

We were out at dinner after the convention, in the poltergeist restaurant again. Alan and Jeff wanted to split a big group thing $12.99 each, but Mike S, seeing my reaction, said “I have to watch my finances.”

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Concerts, Trench coats, and a Poltergeist.

Alan and I were at a concert. It was at a semi-outdoor arena. The place was covered  to about 2/3rds up into the house from the stage, completely walled in with 15' high 2' wide windows at the end of each semicircular row of seats. We were about half way up, the first row in what would have been a balcony, if there'd been seats under us. The seat next to me was broken, the metal rivets had pulled through the chair seat and back in several places.

We were watching a musical performer who was using a variety of household and common items to perform musical numbers. Saws, pots and pans, flatware, Tractor tires and exhaust pipes. At the end of the second set stagehands came to clear the stage. A single white cube rose from a Down center trap. The performer opened the cube. We could see he was struggling with it. He was very tired. The front and top of the cube folded out onto the apron revealing a framing square hanging crookedly from a wire suspended on the top edges of the box. He fiddled with it a bit, tested the microphone and wired connections, it wasn't working properly. He stepped forward and apologized. Instead of a 15 minute break he was calling for a 45 minute intermission due to technical difficulties. He said he would ask the theatre to give a refund for the second half of the show for anyone who would be out too late because of the delay.

Alan and I got up to go get some refreshments. Alan put on his black trench coat and fedora. "Hah! I knew you would bring those," I said digging in my bag, "take that!" I pulled out my beige trench coat, and a straw boater. "I couldn't find a fedora I liked." I was having trouble pulling up the collar Sam spade style because my hair was in the way. We made our way out past the crowd into a local restaurant.

As Alan zoomed over to the dessert case, trench coat flapping, I suddenly found myself walking on my hands. The trench coat was suddenly slick like vinyl, water was rushing up off the pavement. "Alan, check this out!" He looked at me with a concerned look. I was trying to grab on to things to keep myself on the ground as now I seemed to be headed for the ceiling. I reached for Alan, but he was too far away to get to me before I fell up to the ceiling. Only the water and myself seemed to be affected. I was able to jump down (though it felt like jumping up) and could just barely touch the floor. "OK, this is weird."

"How are you doing that?"
"Um, I think…" now I paused, because, in seeing my hands earlier, I knew it was a dream and I was about to say so. Then I realized I wanted to know what my dream self would have said so relaxed and let the dream continue. "Either I'm possessed or there's a really strong poltergeist around."

People began to come over to see what was happening, some of them had digital cameras and began to take pictures. I smiled and waved. Alan started digging through his pockets and found his camera.

"Thanks, how about helping me down, here?"

"Oh, yeah, ok." Alan grabbed a chair and stood up on it (The ceiling was about 18 feet up) and reached for me.

I grabbed his arm and he pulled me down. We moved out to where the crowd was a little thinner, "Thanks for the ride." I said to whatever was causing me to float, "Let me know if I can do anything for you some time." When I was down around the top of the chair I was able to twist my feet around, as soon as they touched the ground I felt gravity return to normal and was able to stand up. Everyone burst into applause. My boater floated up to the ceiling. I missed grabbing it. I think I was supposed to be annoyed, but somehow it was funny (and I really wanted a fedora rather than the boater anyway….) I laughed along with the crowd.

The person behind the counter came out with ice-cream bars for Alan and I, "Sorry about that, it hasn't ever been so rude, or so, um public, before."

"I guess I just attract that sort of thing." I looked up to where my hat was perched under a hanging lamp, as though it was wearing it. "Seriously, if there's anything I can do, let me know." I dug around for a business card and gave one to the counter person, then with only a seconds hesitation I spiraled one up towards the ceiling. The hat floated down and the card zoomed up to the ceiling and vanished.

There were startled "Ah's" from the crowd and a couple of people fainted and several bolted for the doors. Several others crowded around wanting to know how I did that, or if I could do it again, or if I could come to their house and contact their dead mother. I tried to get out as gracefully as possible, but the crowd became more persistent.

Alan buttoned the top button of his over coat, pulled his hat down and shouted. The crowd parted for him and we headed back to the theatre with a small knot of people following a small distance behind.

"You're enjoying this, aren't you?" I asked.

I thought, he really would enjoy this, too bad this was my dream, not his.

Alan just grinned his it doesn't get any better than this grin.

 I put my hand in my pocket and found a wad of paper. I pulled it out, it was my business card, crumpled, but with something written on the back.

Princess Tiger Lilly (a real world cat) managed to nuzzle me awake before I could make out what it said.

Ad astral per technical,

Monday, July 11, 2005

Dream notes. Just some very General thoughts.

Dream notes,

I was inspired to make some notes on my own dreaming history after reading the dream forums over at http://www.forteantimes.com.

Hypnopompic hallucinations (Night Hag, etc) the city that is oddly the same, geography and structures, streets the communities around it, the hills, forests and highways. It has changed over the years, aging with me. The "Anima" or opposite gendered version of myself. Somehow I missed the expanded consciousness "to be one with the universe experience". Fever dreams, the checkered dolphin and talking bookshelves. My sub conscious wasn't a little dwarf like I recently read in another person's post, but looked a bit like a young Sean Connery or Bill Bixby. Instead of saying he didn't like me much he shot at me with a toy rifle. (From the TV during the fever dream.) The Woman of my dreams recently looks a lot like a thin short haired version of Nan (I would suppose that's a good thing.) Flying, drowning, the ever rising water levels, the bathroom that was just too dirty to use. Friends and relatives long gone. Sudden voices calling my name, even sometimes when I am awake. Animal companions, usually of living animals and usually matching the ones camped in bed with us. Occasionally being another person, or animal. Been a Centaur, Eagle, Snake, Cyborg, Woman, Goblin, Ghost, Vampire, Werewolf (very painful and hungry), Black Panther, White Tiger, Lion, Bad Actor, Alien Color Blob (That one was REALLY strange, odd angles, shifting locations, inside parts of the house that connected directly to the outside even though completely enclosed.) Only rarely have I had the no shoes or clothing dream. Falling, and I have hit the ground, it hurt. I have died in my dreams, or taken mortal wounds. I used to never be able to pick up a firearm or weapon in a dream and actually strike an opponent to any effect. It is still so rarely effective that I usually don't even try. I frequently have dreams where I remember previous events that happened in the context of the dream. The worlds I see frequently have a history and texture and sound and smell different from my daily world. I have a series of recurring themes and locations, the Haunted Home, the city park, the highway out of the hills, the waterslide off the cliffs over the ocean. The boardwalk and cliffs overlooking the ocean. The city itself with it's confusingly triangular / non grid central streets. (One of the reasons I like San Marcos, its major thoroughfares are laid out in a triangle. It was very confusing when I first learned how to drive and would roll up here on date nights. Every time I drove up here to a restaurant or the airfield I would seem to think I was lost, then I'd be crossing one of the three main streets. I sometimes wonder if the similarity to my dream city is part of why I was so happy to move here.

Ad astra per technica, 

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Hammering Sets Virtual and Real

My dreams were trying to make up for the last several days of only having a few hours of sleep each night. Was hammering together a set, then painting it all chroma key green. After that I was putting together small folding sets for a Theater Festival I was acting as a chaperone and judge at. It started raining and we had to move our location.

The new location was near the staging area for horse drawn carriages. There was one eight horse team that was towing a trolly car, the trolly was full when the horses took off and raced around the corner. They took off so fast a couple of people fell off. When the Red and Bronze trolly hit the corner it tilted onto only two wheels, several people jumped off the side closest to the ground and others were leaning out the windows on the other side. The trolly slammed to the ground with a bang and several of the riders who were hiking out fell off. The noise, however frightened another couple of teams of horses. One team of four white horses bolted towards our encampment. I grabbed a couple of the kids who weren't able to see the danger, and leapt into the air as the horses and the carriage tumbled right through where we'd been. As we drifted back down to the ground the kids asked how'd you do that.
"Special Effects" was my answer.

Was back at work, putting the finishing touches on the virtual sets that would take the place of the folding sets I'd put together earlier. I showed the camera crew how to spike the camera so if shooting went more than one day we could remount the camera in the same locations to get the images. That would require less monkeying around with the virtual set in post production. the team wanted to do a moving camera shot, so I showed them how to move the camera in the 3d rendering program, and explained that they would have to match the move frame by frame for the final project, as we'd no way to program the camera move. I came up with an idea to put white dots on the set to use a reference points, so we did that.

During the last few days I have noticed that my dreams were far noisier than my reality. Upon waking the musical background cuts out and the dream noises also fade away. On more than one occasion I have woken up feeling releived that there was peace and quiet. At least until the Miranda cat started howling for breakfast.

ad astra per technica

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Fully Orchestrated

Nan and I were out vacationing, seeing some sites along the coast. L was with us, started flirting, it was pretty funny until I flirted back. The panic set in, Nan was angry, and some very wealthy woman, long blond straight hair offered to take us all back to her mansion for a couple of days. (The fully orchestrated dream music was suddenly changing from the highly charged to the bucolic.) When we got the the mansion we settled in one of the rooms, it was all massive futons, the frames were made of 4x4's like the one we own, only full length rather than chair sized. They opened and closed with ease. Nan warned me not to sit down on a bed with her (ominous chords creep into the music.) About that time our hostess took the opportunity to get topless. Let's just say our hostess was the picture of womanly health. "That's a good look for her..." Got me jammed in the ribs by both Nan and L.

Back at work (I hate dreaming I'm at work, it just doesn't seem fair that I would work all day and then spend much of the night back there, and then there's the going in the following day and not getting any real benefit from the night's work.)we are having a meeting about the computer rollout. We're replacing computers for about 8 of our sites from August to December. The teachers at the meeting were furious. They were all carrying Frye's and Best Buy ads, copies of computer edge and one man had about fifteen 11x17 pages of cartoons and other drawings, spec sheets, etc. The music was in a full modern classical frenzy. Finally I jumped up on the conference table (very unlike me, I'm usually more of the chair type) and shouted everyone quiet. My partner was hunched in the corner nearly in tears. My Boss was standing in stunned silence in the doorway. "Now, one at a time."
I explained that the cost of the system was double because of the 5 year onsite warranty. I asked the graphics teachers what was wrong with the high end workstation, "It's not a Mac" was the response, then I pointed out that MacIntosh systems were part of the bid and they could simply choose them instead of the PC system. "Oh, really, you'd let us do that?" I pointed over to my boss.
"That's why we made sure they were included."
"Oh, never mind."
Then the instructor with the stack of drawings came forward. "Didn't you get my emails?" he asked, still very angry, "I've been trying to save the district money here!"
"Why didn't you put in a bid with this information?" I asked, knowing that most of the sheets were not really plans but cartoon characters whining about the inadequacy of the specifications of the lower end teacher workstation. The one that's for taking attendance and browsing the web. Once in a while it would be used to assemble a powerpoint slide show from photos, or to create word processing documents. Not exactly demanding tasks. I had seen the emails and had considered them the lunatic ravings of my subconscious mind (that's part of the trouble with lucid dreaming) so had dismissed them.
"But let me answer that now." I said to my subconscious teacher avatar, "talk to your principal, and you can convince them to get you the higher end workstation, or the MacIntosh." I think I am seeing a theme developing here. "Our low end workstation meets your needs as you've outlined them on page 8, and then exceeds them in some areas, I'm not convinced there is a problem here other than we are not buying the brand you want." The room laughed. I felt a little bad for making such a direct comment, but I felt I needed to say something to get to the real problem.
"I just think we could have saved a million dollars and still hired enough techs to support us, then you'd be able to do the support yourselves." I couldn't disagree, that was/is my thoughts all along.
"Unfortunately that plan requires two things, space and a break from the site-based management model." I didn't mention that it would also require about a four year transition to the new system, which means whoever is in charge of the new support model has an ever increasing staff and workload. It would take very talented leadership to lead what would essentially be two IT departments.
At this point the meeting went much better and I had myself convinced that even if this wasn't the best plan, it was THE plan and we could work to make learning happen under it. (Cue sappy violin music.)

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Under Construction

The district I work for has several sites under construction. I was touring them, and finding that most of the roads were also under construction, making me late for my many meetings. I was driving an interesting two-wheel vehicle that would have easily fit in a 3 foot square. I was in an almost standing position, and the thing had split handlebars that controlled the wheels independently. I was dodging cranes and skip loaders and wondering at a couple of narrow passages how a normal car could ever possibly get through. It turns out they couldn't, the construction folks had waved me through because they wanted to see the strange vehicle I was driving. Things were so jammed at one point that they let me drive into a skip loader shovel, and they lifted me over the trench they were digging so I could continue on my trip.

Later, I had all the tile off of the roof and piled in our driveway. While I had the roof open we decided to raise the roof over our offices to make an upstairs porch/solarium. We hadn't made any plans for stairs, though, and I was trying to convince Nan that we didn't need any. A ladder would do for me, and the cats could climb up the carpeted walls of the ladderway. I could tell she wasn't buying it.

Ad astra per technica,

Monday, July 04, 2005

Star Wars Gate

This morning's dream mixed up the two science fiction properties in a completely unsanctioned way. Note, All copyright and trade marked items are property of their respective owners and my dreaming about them should not be interpreted as a challenge to their respective trademarks or copyrights.

Darn, the details have vanished. I remember that the gate system travels to a galaxy far far away, and the G'ould in this part of the Galaxy are new at the whole posession thing, and so they call themselves the Midichlorians. In fact, they are pretty much happy to just be in a host, so much so that they go along in stealth mode most of the time, enhancing the powers of their hosts. It was a bizarre dream in that the records of the Republic indicated that Han Solo got the short end of the stick as far as credit for changing history went, and there was a young researcher, a Solo herself, who was going through the old archives and interviewing G'ould/Jedi from that ere to correct, or at least update the history.

Ad Astra per Technica
Fermius Firefly

Sunday, July 03, 2005

A Stacking Dice Game

Was playing a game, it involved 3 sizes of six sided dice. 36 of each size stacked in a six by six square to start.. The object of the game was to slide the dice of the top level out of the way, so you could slide the dice of the second level out of the way, so you could remove the dice in the bottom level for scoring. The way to move the dice was to slide the smaller dice on top of another die. Each die could hold up to four smaller dice, but their total had to equal the die they were resting on exactly, or less. If the total is less, the dice stay in placed. If the total of the small dice were equal to the die they were sitting on, they can be removed and scored. Once a die was open on the second level, it could be slid next to by any other die on the second level, subject to the same rules as the first level. After that the second level is considered in play and the piles can be moved as though they were a single die. Any small dice on top move with the second level die. If the move allows the small dice a legal move, that move can also be taken. If you move a larger die, any smaller dice on top may also be moved, after the larger die moves.
The second level dice can be removed if they are clear, and they total the number on the bottom level die. To remove a bottom level die it has to be empty, and have at least two empty sides (so initially you only have the bottom four corners eligible to be removed.) Bottom level dice can be slid into any open spot on the bottom level so long as they remain connected to the level.
A player can take a scored die, roll it and attach it back to the pile, but then must immediately move a second level pile to cover it. (Thus you can't reroll any of the top level dice) If this uncovers a legal scoring die, than that die can be scored. This is one way to turn a low scoring die into a higher scoring die. Top level dice are worth their face value, second tier dice are worth 2 times their pips, and the base level are worth 4 times their pips.
If a player cannot move they may pass or roll in a second tier or base level die. There were two games in the dream, one used multicolored dice each tier half the size of the one below it, the other used tiles with a hole in them for the die for the second tier (1") and the base level (2"). All of the dice were the same size in that version. The tiles were clear acrylic so you could see the base below the second level. I think the second version would be a little easier to implement and manipulate.
The game was apparently set up by rolling the dice and placing them in the piles/tiles.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

My Wife and I were throwing a party. My Mom could not say if she was going to make it or not. Dad really wanted to come over, but wouldn't come without Mom, even though he wouldn't tell her that because he didn't want to influence her decision.

There was also something with the overflowing toilet in the haunted house. Yes, the full-bladder-you-should-wake-up-now dream.

In one or the other of the above dreams I had an electric pickup truck, with the cargo area in front of the cab. It was covered with a hard cover, and could fit about a half dozen sheets of plywood and dozen 2x4's completely in the cargo area plus some items stashed in the thicker area under the cab. The whole thing was shaped like a wedge with a bubble on the back. It was also a very bright blue with silvery metal flakes deep in the paint. Not quite the "it's full of stars" effect, but close.