I am a professional competitive eater. My partner (a very thin Japanese man) and I are training for an event that will occur in two weeks - it's a brat-eating contest, and we want to be well prepared. We start off with a large Caesar salad split between us. The salad was made in an industrial-sized mixing bowl, and it looks like it can hold maybe ten gallons. After we scarf the salad down easily, we begin to eat ice cream. It's flavored with chocolate and peanut butter, and we're eating out of a fifteen gallon cardboard carton, similar to the ones they have in ice cream shops, only bigger. Ice cream is one of my favorite foods to eat, so I'm wolfing it down the hatch much faster than my partner. Suddenly, a Mr. Miyagi-like character steps out of the shadows and raps my partner on the head with a cane. This coach character lets my partner know in no uncertain terms that if he falls behind me again, he will be severely punished.


I am on a sound stage hosting some Today-like morning talk program. We're doing a segment on makeup for fall, and the lady we've got on to host the piece is not Joan Rivers, but she's got the same stylist. You know the look: pink tweed pantsuit, 30-odd years of facial plastic surgery, and heavy, heavy pancake clown makeup. After filming stops, the woman begins to attack my look in a passive-aggressive manner. I wear little to no makeup on a day-to-day basis (true), and Rivers-doppelgänger is aghast that I haven't even bothered to wear eyeliner and lipliner on the air. She's walking me through the compact options that she'd recommend I immediately start implementing into my daily routine, and, much to my chagrin, my mother is walking behind Rivers-doppelgänger, nodding and smiling at her suggestions. Mama has the nerve to tell me that Rivers-doppelgänger is totally right, that I should be more aware of my appearance. I am irritated, because success in medical school has nothing to do with my makeup habits. (After writing this, I'm kind of thinking that Rivers is her own doppelgänger, but whatever. Also, interesting fun fact: when I image googled "too much makeup" in order to find a picture for this post, Tammy Faye Baker popped up everywhere, but no Joan Rivers. Since Baker just kicked the bucket, I'll keep it classy with another picture.)

After I leave the sound stage, I run into a guy I know. This guy always has beautiful curly hair (not you, Scott, though your hair's also very nice). For some reason, he's chopped his hair into a very short and wholly unappealing buzz cut. The effect is so dramatic that I don't recognize him at first. However, as soon as he opens his mouth, I can tell who he is. Years of people telling this kid he's a genius (which he is, in some respects) haven't served him all that well; he assumes that he's an authority on many subjects, when, in fact, he presents himself as pompous and extremely irritating most of the time.

I ditch the kid and take a route walking home with my mom that leads us right by St. Patrick's Parish, the church at which I was First Communion-ed and confirmed. I spot a limo in the driveway along with rows of catering tables - a wedding's obviously taking place. Mama insists that we peek inside to see who's getting hitched, so we walk in the main entrance. St. Pat's is magnificent in my dream, with a vestibule that's more like a huge reception hall. Tables are set up in here for the post-nuptials dinner and dance. Of course, my mom immediately spots a woman she recognizes and is assigned by said woman to man the guest book. I follow her to the guest book table, but she soon sees someone else she must greet, and she abandons me. I am grudgingly manning her post when a woman who looks vaguely familiar approaches. She begins to tell me a story about the mysterious disappearance and death of a man who is apparently one of her relatives. He was going out to meet a friend whose truck had stalled in an isolated area, and the last person who saw him alive was the person at Citgo who sold him cigarettes on his way out of town. I am very intrigued by her story, and I ask her questions until I've gotten all useful information about the case from her. (I had a weird in-dream déjà vu experience while the woman was telling the story of this unsolved murder. I don't know if it was a component of another dream that I'd forgotten before writing down or if the story's loosely based on reality. It was truly bizarre to feel déjà vu in a dream, in any case.)


I am at my apartment hanging out with a few people, including Scott, Courtney, and Sarah. We're just sitting around, having a few drinks. I go to the bathroom, and when I return to the living room, there are fifteen or twenty more people standing around. Someone's cranked some crappy rap music up, and I am apparently throwing a party now. I don't know anyone who's raided my apartment, and I am furious.

Vito woke me up, and I fell asleep to have a dream very similar to the first. The only real difference was that party guests knocked at my door. When I answered the door, the fifteen or twenty strangers swarmed in my living room with a keg and started getting ridiculous. I was still very angry during this dream.


I'm sitting on the couch in my living room, petting Vito, who's asleep on my lap. Tiff comes in, followed by a handful of people. I think I see my landlord coming in the door. (I haven't told her yet that I got a kitten -- it adds a surcharge to the rent. Paying the surcharge isn't an issue, but I haven't had a chance to talk to her yet. This makes Vito an undercover kitty, at present.) I leap up and basically thrust Vito in her arms, saying excitedly, "I got a kitten!" I think I was trying to act really pumped, like I had just acquired the cat. Anyway, the person I thrust Vito upon is not my landlord. It's Tiff's father's new girlfriend, and she's allergic to cats. I am embarrassed.


I only remember one tiny snippet from my dream last night, but I'll blog it, as I'm known for my great subtlety. If you know me, you'll likely be amused.

A friend's boyfriend is following me around my apartment. He's getting underfoot the way a small child or animal would. I think he's trying to help me with something, as this guy's been sucking up to me for months now. Little does he know he's trying to dig himself out of a whole a mile deep and a foot wide. I turn around to face him and, nose to nose, in my politest voice, I tell him to fuck off.

(If I would've gone lucid in this dream, what a time I would have enjoyed! Sadly, it was not to be; I didn't get to rant to this dude like I've always wanted to in real life.)


I am at the movies, in the company two girls with whom I went to high school. For anonymity and simplicity, I'll refer to them as Girl #1 and Girl #2. Girl #1 is, strangely enough, the same bitchy woman who recently made another dream appearance (I honestly have no idea why she keeps popping up. Still haven't seen her since graduation.). Girl #2 was a friend of mine. We're in the theatre watching some slasher flick; it's one of those where the killer is a sadistic semi driver who stalks his unsuspecting victims along the fine highways of America, A.K.A. your basic, formulaic, lame horror movie.

When the credits finally roll, I am complaining about how crappy the movie was and commenting to the girls that we should've gone to something we knew would be decent. Girl #1 replies by telling me that I am too judgmental and conceited when it comes to film and basically tells me to lower my pompous standards. Girl #2 does what she always did in high school in similar situations.
(She was a fairly popular girl who got along well with everyone. If Girl #2 and I were alone, we'd get along swimmingly. However, if she was in the presence of people who were of a higher high school caste than my own, she would defer to them and ignore me, for all intensive purposes. She was so fun to hang out with that she got away with this, and I remained friends with her.) Since Girl #1 is higher on the social food chain, Girl #2 backs her up and denigrates my taste in movies. I am shocked that she still acts in such an immature fashion, considering that high school rank hardly matters after graduation day. This behavior makes me angry, and more than a little bit sorry for her.

We leave the theatre and head to an appointment. I don't know where or why we're going until we arrive at Miller Park. We head out onto the field, joining the team, who are running some batting drills. I go over and chit-chat to Prince Fielder as he is working on his long ball. He's hitting homers left, right, and center while I'm talking him up about the season, etc. Girl #2 is talking J.J. Hardy's ear off, while Girl #1 can't get anyone to pay her any attention except Matt Wise. I laugh. Girl #2 and I leave for dinner with Prince and J.J., ditching Girl #1, who's still trying to find a better Brewers dinner date.


I am at the annual School of Medicine ice cream social. I'm excited to be there and very hungry, so I head to the tables to check out what flavors are available this year. All of the administrative staff are peddling their wares, but the ice cream flavors that they're scooping are just bizarre. The flavors are strange combinations, e.g., blueberry caramel cashew crunch. As I walk from staff member to staff member, I feel more and more disappointed with the way the ice cream social's turned out this year. Though everyone's eager to give me ice cream, nothing on hand is even remotely appealing. I eventually settle on a peach cobbler chocolate combo, and I am supremely annoyed with the dessert I end up eating.

(Weird dream, especially considering that the SMPH ice cream social is always delicious.)


Several people are over at my Madison apartment to meet and play with Vito, my new kitten. For no apparent reason, one of my guests is this extremely arrogant bitch from my high school graduating class, whom I haven't seen since the graduation ceremony.

Vito's really excited, because I've purchased him canned food after a recommendation from the vet. He loves it, and gobbles up a whole small can in a matter of minutes.
(I did buy Vito canned food yesterday. The vet recommended that I give him the extra fat and protein found in canned food, since he's got very little body fat at present.)

My guests and I are looking at pictures of my trip with Scott to Bonnaroo. I'm wearing these large sunglasses in most pictures, and my bitchy guest happens to comment on how hideous they are in a very passive-aggressive manner. She also lets me know that it's a good thing those sunglasses are now broken, since they must be an embarrassment to wear.

Soon after, Vito, who's been making weird gulping sounds for a minute or two after eating his meal, climbs onto the bitch's lap. Shortly thereafter, he upchucks all over her skirt. I am delighted; instant karma does exist. Thanks, Vito.


I'm heading into my old high school with Tiffany and my sister, Sarah. For some reason, school was optional for students today, but my mother's still forced me to attend. We head to our first class, which is in some area of science. Tiff informs me that since most of the class is absent today, we're supposed to be watching a video entitled "Epidemic" which focuses on the spread of multiple diseases, including the medieval plague, polio, ebola, and AIDS. This doesn't exactly forecast a happy-go-lucky start to the day, but when Mrs. Kemp (my favorite high school biology teacher) tries to put the tape into the VCR, it breaks immediately.

We put our chairs into a large circle, intent on discussing disease spread instead of watching the film. For some reason, Mrs. Goodman
(the district RN) is acting as an aide to our class of about ten students. Interestingly, after the tape breaks, the class unanimously decides that we're not staying. I begin to leave the classroom and head home with Sarah. Instantly, Mrs. Goodman is on my tail, guilting me about my decision to leave school. She follows me all the way out to my car. I remember Sarah drove us home, because she unlocked and started the Prelude while I distracted Mrs. Goodman for the time being.


I am outside in the country, frantically looking around. My kitten has just run away, and I'm worried that I won't be able to find him. Eventually, I see a few kittens playing together. Two have the same coloring as my cat: orange stripes with patches of white. I am worried at first that I won't be able to tell my cat from the other, similar one. These worries soon disappear. I'd know Vito anywhere, as I've never heard a kitten talk so much in my life. Happily, I grab Vito from the other cats and walk away.

(Just got a kitten Saturday. Since he's always lazing on my bed at night, I wouldn't be surprised if I have a few cat-themed dreams.)


1. I am with my immediate family members and Aunt Patty (my father's sister). We're walking through a very scenic rural area. I hear my father and Aunt Patty pointing out places as we pass and reminiscing about their youth. I figure that we must be in the Rouses Point area, where my father was raised. He points out his favorite place to swim as a kid and his father's fishing spot. We enter heavy woods, and, although it's midday, we can hardly see in front of our faces. My father and Aunt Patty lead the way, since they've obviously been through these woods many times before. After a good 15-minute hike, we emerge in Rouses Point; we've returned to civilization, kind of.

2. In my second dream, I was having my car repaired by an untrustworthy mechanic. Working as a one-woman Better Business Bureau, I aimed to catch him in the act. I hired a private investigator to track the mechanic's shady repairs and even shadier price inflations. I remember feeling incredibly self-satisfied, though there was no recompense for my suffering at his hand in the dream.


1. I am with my sisters at home. We're going to a birthday party later on in the day, and we're trying to think of a suitable present for the kid. The kid whose birthday we're celebrating is in L&E's class, a real pain whom we can't stand in real life. For some unknown reason, the most befitting gift we can think of is a nose ring piercing. He doesn't yet have his nose pierced, so we're going to get a gift certificate for the cost of piercing and buy him a nice ring to go along with it. Most of this dream was spent with me trying to get everyone involved in the van to go to Wal-Mart and buy the piercing. Once there, we agonized over jewelery choices for some time, finally deciding on a black ring.

2. I am a detective on an inner city beat, and my team and I are investigating a series of similar murders. In each case, the victim's skull has been cut away and specific brain areas have been removed. We're on the scene of another murder which appears to be associated with the same serial murderer. This victim, a young, pretty blonde woman, has had her amygdala removed, with other brain regions virtually intact. (Due to my BS in neuroscience, I've been a real boon to the team as of late.) Near the woman's body, we find a man's skull. This skull has been picked clean to the bone -- whether by time or actual cleaning, we don't know yet. The skull's got a characteristic circle cut away over the posterior portion; we know that this man is yet another victim of this bizarre brain-coveting killer. We go through the backlogs of unsolved murders, and we match the skull to the body of a victim recovered in the mid-nineties. Apparently, this killer has been at work for over a decade and has just now chosen to be more forthright with his methods. We ponder his motives as we begin to pore over the crime scene.


I am with my family and Scott. We are in Asia, possibly the Himalayas, and we are bound and determined to climb to the peak of a mountain. However, compared to the surrounding mountains, the mountain we aim to climb is rather puny. For some reason, we climb a large portion of the mountain inside the mountain, like it's the Statue of Liberty or something. The pathways inside the mountain are treacherous, with plenty of falling rock and tight passages to squeeze through. When we're about halfway up the mountain, Papa opens up a hidden trap door, and we surface. The rest of the climb is difficult, in part because I've worn running shoes instead of hiking boots. Scott walks behind me to ensure I don't slip and fall a few hundred feet.

When we reach the summit, I realize what my parents didn't tell me; we were involved in a race to this mountain's peak. Our method of climbing the mountain's interior has put us far into the lead, and we've won the race. As I woke up, I remember that I was racing to descend the mountain and claim my prize (and I never knew what the prize was).


I am at some sort of party. In attendance is the guy I'm physically attracted to, though I really loathe his personality most of the time. We're running in to one another repeatedly, doing a flirtatious pas de deux. Eventually, he pulls me close and tells me that he wants me. I remember feeling conflicted about this, so I still must have been with Scott in this dream. Despite my guilt, I follow him into another room, and he shuts the door.

Though I'm in his arms, we've yet to kiss or make any substantial contact when a man walks into the room we're in. I look around for the first time and realize that I'm leaning against a sink. On the wall near me is a row of urinals. I look at him in disbelief. "You took me to the men's bathroom? Seriously?" He shrugs and half-smiles sheepishly, clearly out of ideas at this point. The romantic moment is definitely broken at this point, so I turn and make a beeline for the door, apologizing to the man who interrupted us as I leave. Shaking my head, I silently vow to never let this dude make a move on me again. It's always going to be a comedy of errors, and it's always going to leave a bad afterglow.