Sleeping usually comes very easily for me. In fact, in an effort to eradicate a bad habit of repeatedly hitting the snooze button, I once moved my alarm clock across the room so that I would have to get out of bed and walk a couple yards to turn it off. I discovered that I was able to do this, walk back to my bed, and go right back to sleep. Not only that, but if the alarm interrupted a dream, I could awaken, consciously make a round-trip to the clock, and resume the very same dream. That’s right, folks: you can force me out of REM sleep, and I don’t need to restart the cycle to get back where I was.
When I was a teenager, I briefly kept a record of my dreams, and they are mostly as strange and ridiculous as you might guess. I wish I had kept up my practice of dream documentation, for I would surely have enough material for a surreal novel or two by now. As it is, I remember only a tiny fraction of my somnambulistic journeys with any specificity. Aside from a handful of particularly memorable dreams (such as the one in which I was attacked by my knife-wielding doppelganger, who kept yelling, “I’m Robert the Cropper!”), I tend to completely forget what I dream within minutes or seconds of waking. But with four decades of dreaming behind me, there have been some recurring themes. Read More
…guaranteed to blow your head apart…rest assured you’ll get your money’s worth…
Last night’s Lakewood, Ohio concert by Keith Emerson and Greg Lake was the stuff of dreams. I should know, for as a longtime fan of Emerson, Lake and Palmer, the prog-rock trio has literally appeared in my somnambulistic scenarios no less than three times. In one ridiculous dream from years ago, they arrived at my house for the purpose of playing a game of Scrabble on my deluxe, $500, Franklin Mint Collector’s Edition board. In another, I sat on a gym floor and watched them perform to hardly anyone from mere feet away. More recently, I dreamt that I stumbled across ELP playing an outdoor set in a park, and I simply ambled up to the front of the stage. I suppose hours and hours of listening to Brain Salad Surgery and Tarkus will do that to the sleeping mind.
So when I heard that two-thirds of my favorite band were due to appear in a high school auditorium near Cleveland to kick off an unprecedented series of intimate, semi-unplugged shows, I was intrigued. It sounded like something I would dream. I checked the date and was surprised to find that it coincided with the very beginning of my Spring Break; I could conceivably head up north after school and catch the show. Then, when I got in on a fan club presale and purchased a single ticket, I was definitely excited. I would be sitting in the middle of the first row. Like my actual ELP dreams, this reality was strange, wonderful, and maybe too good to be true. Read More