Friday, November 24, 2006


Nothing more than a vague memory, and one phrase transcribed upon awakening (TUA).

My wife J and I somehow seemed to have become involved in child trafficking. 'Barbatross' was the name of a criminal mastermind. The phrase, uttered by myself: "We'll get 400 notes for each of the little beggars - but for a grand we could go to Barbatross.'

Interestingly, if you google 'barbatross' you'll find a few race horses and at least one property company of that name.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Fraudulent Cardinal

I was attending a fairly large service in a cathedral, and realised I was quite high-up amongst the clergy present, though not delivering the service itself.

I seemed to be wearing a cardinal's robes, and was being pushed around respectfully in a weelchair... I felt like a terrible fraud, being neither a cardinal nor unable to walk. I rose from the wheelchair occasionaly to make my way on foot, out of embarrassment more than anything else, but this merely appeared to attract further quiet respect from those around me.

The congregation were not seated in one assembly, facing towards the chancel, but rather in a cross shape facing a central altar.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Wasp Disposal

My wife J and I are out on a street round the corner from our home disposing of wasps. I'm about to nip back to get an aerosol for destroying wasps' nests from where I keep it in a shed in our garden, when I realise the problem is bigger than that. This isn't, as I can see, a nest - this is a wasp heap.

As we ponder the situation, a silver Mercedes comes screeching round the corner, and pulls up suddenly. It's a man I know in the City Council, and he's brought the council leader with him. This is a young guy (I think he was Indian), full of enthusiasm for wasp killing, energetic and keen to solve our problem. He begins pulling huge translucent plastic barrels from the boot of the car - they're full of a toxic-looking brown liquid, and he hurls them up in the air... they bounce violently when they hit the ground, spilling their contents in an uncontrolled manner.

I recall feeling pleased that the problem was being dealt with so vigorously, this relief turning to disappointment when it appeared that the solution was not being provided in what would seem to be an effective manner. I'm sure that this aspect of the dream was in some way influenced by a recent experience with plumbing contractors.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Terrorist Accusation and Wounding

Was living near the top of an enormous, silver block of flats - not shabby, but not particularly special, either. There were a hundred stories in the building, so the lift displayed percentages as you travelled in it.

I met a middle-aged Muslim lady, who insisted, grimly, on telling me that an Asian guy of my acquaintance was actually a terrorist plotting a terrible crime. I shouted at her and covered my ears, knowing that as soon as I knew even unsubstantiated accusations about any individual I would be breaking the law by not informing the authorities. To no avail... she succeeded in communicating her concerns and I knew I was already irretrievably embroiled in the matter.

This involvement seemed to have borne fruit before too long, since I soon found myself with various injuries. I kept smearing blood on door handles and cash machines as I went about my daily business - increasingly concerned that I should find medical attention, but finding this very difficult. Particularly disturbing was a length of thin metal rod protruding from a bloody wound on my left arm, which caused great pain when I caught it on things.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Langham Code

I was reading an article in the 'Guardian' concerning the sad case of the comedy actor Chris Langham, who is facing charges of indecent assault. I got the impression that the writer of the piece knew more than he felt secure about putting into print, and this suspicion was confirmed by a note at the foot of the article explaining: 'If you wish to know more about a possible motive, fold along the dotted lines'. It was only when thus prompted that I noticed some faint dotted lines running horizontally through the typesetting. Naturally, I folded the paper as suggested to find that certain lines of type joined crudely up to form the phrase 'self-financed film project'.

I marvelled at this new journalistic technique, which presumably avoided legal difficulties, as well as explaining the appearance of certain apparently awkward or inappropriate words in the prose.

I did actually glance at an article in the Guardian on this topic while eating a sandwich in my car yesterday; it was days old and I had already read it.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The Rake

I became aware of a secret government conspiracy known as 'The Rake'. I was shown, as part of a trail of evidence, a poor colour-photocopy of a complex hotel invoice. It incorporated scribbles and marginalia, many quite chatty, but all full of impenetrable terms and code-words. Some mentioned parties and the word 'charlie'... I was slightly shocked - but these young, high-flying secret agents probably felt they needed to let off steam whilst deep in their covert assignments.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Y's After the Event

A campaign has been launched, based on supposed evidence that if men wear more brightly coloured underpants, it will help prevent accidents.

At one point I find myself somewhere somewhere Newcastle. I am looking out over a low-lying and marshy river estuary; I can see several large, rusting mechanical pylons. I realise that they are remnants of the ones which feature in the brutal denoument of 'Get Carter'.

An elderly Geordie local explains to me that his father used to tell him that the pylons were once painted a vivid red, and that this ensured there were less of a danger to shipping and air traffic.

Later, I discover that the bright-coloured-underpants campaign appears to have been largely created by Marks and Spencer - their stores are full of promotional graphics urging customers to follow this offical advice (like eating five portions of fresh fruit and vegetables per day), and I surmise that the whole campaign is nothing more than a cynical plot to sell more men's garments.

Thinking about it now, the pylon-vista was very reminiscent of Kincardine Bridge (on the River Forth).

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Breakfast with Hunter

I visit the home of Hunter S Thompson (the outlaw journalist), about whom I have been obsessing a good deal recently. He is still alive, naturally. Rather than his famous Owl Farm compound, I find he is living in an architecturally unique structure in a desert. It's a very organic-looking building, mainly composed of curved sheets of yellow sandstone with stout, dull steel pillars. It has hot tubs and bedrooms and enclosed areas hung with white sheets, all overlain slightly with wind-blown dust.

The great man seems tolerant of my company, although not overjoyed. I leave him fiddling around with some handguns and climb stairs to a high, amoebic tower (with flagpole) to survey the arid wastes around. It's very hot; I am wearing my old, distressed black jesus sandals. Later, in what seems like the dining area of the house, I reflect that I never checked if a flag was flying - and if one was, would it carry his famous double-thumbed Gonzo fist emblem?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Ominous Bee

All I remember is the point at which matters became really desperate... we were all exhausted, some injured, when the soldier said: "I hear the sound of that bee. Please God don't let it turn into the sound of a swarm"

Monday, June 05, 2006

Political Adventures in Glasgow

Some sort of anti-war protest is scheduled to happen. It's marching from somewhere North-East of Glasgow city centre towards Glasgow Green. Interested in taking part in a non-committal sort of way, I begin to make my way up through increasingly fragmented and run-down cityscape. It becomes less pleasant as the incidence of broken glass increases - I am barefoot.

Eventually I bump into my mother; she is on her way up to the march. I change my mind when she explains that it seems to be entirely a vehicle for George Galloway, and I worry that she is being recruited into something that looks like having a Galloway ego-trip as its main purpose. Eventually (now travelling by bike, having had one helpfully rolled out to me by an unseen assistant) I encounter the procession - it's much smaller than I'd expected, a straggling band with Galloway at its head.

I am invited to a formal lunch, and decide this would be a better option. It seems to be hosted by Strathclyde University (most of this dream takes place in the rough geographical area occupied by their campus in real life), and to demonstrate some scientific point the food has all been dyed - one colour per plate. The dishes (new potatoes, and some tuna steak or white fish) at my end of the table are blue - further down the table, green, red and yellow. Sitting beside me is the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Gordon Brown, and I humorously remark to my fellow VIP guest that sitting him at the blue food is something of a political faux-pas on the part of the hosts.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Time Cam

I'm with my cousins K and D - we're in someone's house (I think it might belong to me) and mucking about with a small video camera which I have borrowed. Scanning around the room throught the viewfinder (which only shows a greyscale image, as some cameras do) I notice that people's faces look somehow different. Most objects around the room look the same, though some a little 'fresher' tha they do when I take the camera from my eye. Most strikingly, my mother's cat (who is roaming around the room) appears smaller, shorter-haired and more athletic.

I discuss this with K, who is working in a little plot outside the tenement he lives in (it looks a bit like somewhere in Hyndland, Glasgow). He is brandishing a small gardening fork, and explains to me how he has deduced that the camera shows the past! He reckons, from the cat's appearance, that it shows objects and people to be about ten years before the present. At this point his sister F comes along, and we explain this remarkable news to her. She is very excited and jokes about how 'any woman would be glad of a camera like that'. I feel the need to clarify that - without some clever arrnagement of mirrors and lenses - it would be impossible for her to actually see herself through the viewfinder.

Later, I am walking along a street in Glasgow when a man's dog begins to harass me. I am immediately both angry and frightened, especially so since the dog's owner seems to be encouraging the beast's behaviour. "Look: fuck off with your dog" I cry. The man merely speaks to his dog: "That's it, boy - he's on my patch". "This is a public place!" I respond, "it's not 'your patch'".

The greyscale viewfinder detail certainly derives from experience of a digital film camera I was using a while ago. I've always been wary of dogs I don't know, and some of their owners, but doubt I would be quite so forthcoming so quickly in this situation...

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Dreadful Nuclear Travelogue

A hazily-remembered but terrible and depressing dream... starting in a pseudo-Glasgow - the country was on the brink of nuclear conflict. Urban scenarios in Victorian official buildings; eventually I became aware that an atmosphere of resigned, grotesque, crazy fatalism had taken over, reminiscent of the film 'Downfall'.

Next, my wife J and I were abandoning the city at my insistence and heading (sometimes by car, sometimes by foot) towards Loch Lomond. Although there were no scenes of mass exodus - we seemed to be the only people heading for the countryside - we travelled through an increasingly lawless and chaotic Scotland. By the time we reached a pseudo-Helensburgh, the townspeople were flooding out of the town buildings with the news that missiles had been launched and were on their way.

Looking down the River Clyde towards Glasgow (things seeming to have become geographically reversed) I could see, against a clear afternoon sky, the missile glimmering... red metallic paint. And then, a mushroom cloud, smaller and more fiery than I expected. I watched it for a while, a column of flames shooting upwards from a small area of ground before realising that our journey should continue as soon as possible.

Therafter, an increasingly despairing trek further into the wilderness; a feeling of being aware that I was deliberately shutting off concerns about food and shelter, and our future in general.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Costume weekend

A really enjoyable dream. We go off to a weekend party somewhat resembling one of those murder-mystery things - however, though this one features structured events nothing seems to really reach a conclusion. The theme is sort-of-eighteenth century, so everyone is wearing frock-coats, wigs and huge taffetta dresses.

I'm having a great time - all the participants do very well speaking in the appropriate language of the era. I particularly enjoy using the word 'sir' at the end of each sentence when speaking to a male partygoer. At one point I thought of going to our room to fetch my camera and take a snap of proceedings - it occurred to me that the apperance of this 21st century gadget would spoil the fun a bit, so changed my mind.

One of the rooms within the substantial period villa housing the event contains a model of the villa and its surrounding buildings. They appear to be set in estate parkland and each can be lifted up to reveal a tiny, scale interior showing the events taking place so that one might get a good overview of how the 'plot' of the weekend will develop. I quite fancied going to look at a stable block nearby, but discovered on leaving the french windows at the back of the house that I was had in fact been in my mother's house and was now standing in her back garden on a frosty morning. I could hear voices speaking in the correct manner from the next street along and realised that the organisers had in fact spread the various buildings around these suburban streets.

I walked back inside and poured myself a drink from a decanter, wondering how the locals reacted to these playacting people in fancy dress making their way between the buildings.

I had arrived at the party in a sky-blue Morris Minor which I owned. Looking at it later, I noticed I'd parked it inside on the parquet flooring, and it had been altered into a 'stretch' version by chopping in half and using enormous girders to join the two halfs.

Driving cars indoors and the attendant difficulties is becoming a recurrent theme here.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Particle Accelerator

(transcribed from notes made immediately upon awakening)

Fire reported in Clyde Tunnel... Performance artists... slam door on AH, try to fake photographs.

Filming, waiting for P with fancy sports car. At particle accelerator, drum-like, concrete, exhibition corridors, terrorist risk (London flattened, W. Europe uninhabited), pointed up by hoax ???/bomb incident a couple of years ago. Car park outside. Motorhead week on TV, avant-garde documentaries, watching in hotel (?) bar with relatives and filming colleagues. Christmas guests elsewhere in hotel, well-off family deposits large and robust animatronic Rudolph, it responds to actions...

Early morning on way to filming location. Ice T and Chuck D have become involved and to my irritation want to re-direct it as a hip-hop promo...

...Consider tying H to a school chair for vocal run-through. P doesn't appear on time, then leaves early.