Dream LogicI had a dream last night that everyone in Southwest Florida had their own locker for storage of personal items. These weren't big lockers, probably about the same size as the one you had in middle school, but they were free and everybody had one. What was unique about these lockers was their location – stacked on top of one another in a giant, towering mass of rectangular storage. I guess you never think about the logistics of a couple hundred thousand public lockers when you're trying to push a bill supporting them through congress. Naturally, my locker was located several dozen stories up, and there was no truly safe way to reach it and retrieve my belongings.
As is the case with most dreams, this was common knowledge and you were a fool if you didn't accept it as a plain fact.
Well, I wanted to get to my locker all the same. So I somehow managed to reach the upper echelons of the lockertower, by some mysterious means which were never revealed to me. You know how a lot of times in your dream state, you'll achieve something by merely thinking of it? That's how I got to that upper level, where my locker was situated. I thought "man, I need to get up there," blinked and found that I'd hazily floated upwards about twelve stories, and was suddenly tooling around with the combination lock. It would be nice if more things could be achieved in the real world through telekinesis.
It was around this point, though, that I realized I could potentially be living through the final moments of my own life. The ledge I was standing atop was extremely narrow, it was windy, and there was a small crowd of onlookers forming along the twelfth-floor picture window in the skyscraper directly across from me. Lately, I've given a lot of thought to the final moments of a body's life, and how much of that time the person truly experiences. If you've ever been knocked unconscious, you know the feeling. You don't remember anything about the minute or two immediately preceding your fall. I'm sure it's very similar with death – if you step off a curb and get hit by a bus, do you actually experience the sensation of stepping off that curb, or is the last thing to go through your mind a walk through a doorway or a descent of a staircase? It occurred to me that I could very well be experiencing the last moments of my life, so I wanted to savor them. Naturally, I froze in my tracks. The wind whipped by me, I heard a bird fluttering somewhere in the distance.
I never got my locker open, and I stayed in that terrible, panicked freeze until I finally woke up. Maybe if I'd stepped off the ledge, I would've taken flight. Who knows? Upon reflection, the whole experience was probably caused by the closing scenes of Blade Runner, which I'd watched about ten minutes before falling asleep last night. Harrison Ford is chasing / running from the master replicant, it's raining, he's running along rooftops and there are no less than three scenes where he's dangling precariously from a ledge, several stories above the pavement. For one night, I was Harrison Ford. Except it wasn't raining, a cyborg wasn't after my blood, and I was really only interested in opening my government-provided storage cube. I don't even remember what I was after.
Sometimes I love dreams...