In the last year, my company, like many others, has had to lay off a few people to cope with the economic downturn. Most recently they laid off the receptionist so a few of us have had to step in to fill in for reception duties when needed. I end up sitting at the front desk for a little while during morning meetings so when clients come in and out there's someone there to give them their parking validation. Believe it or not, I'm not a front-desk type of person. I've been doing this for about a week now and it still stresses me out.
This stress manifested itself last night when I had a dream about parking validation.
Really, some might consider it a nightmare. In my dream, there were 4 people needing validation all at once and I couldn't read the timestamps on their parking tickets. So I just started guessing. I arbitrarily put stickers on their stupid tickets as they made comments about how poorly I was doing my job because I was moving so slowly. As I handed the tickets back their timestamps became clear and I realized I had given them the wrong validation amounts... so I had to get the tickets back and add more stickers... to the point where the backside of the ticket was covered in incremental validation stickers. I was like a crazy person mumbling as I handed their tickets back and trying to explain that the reason I was so terrible at parking validation was because it wasn't my normal job.
So. Yes. I had a dream about parking validation. AND it prevented me from having a lovely night's sleep too.
I think we all have work related dreams. I haven't had many since I've been working in an office (maybe because daily work life is usually so predictable) but when I used to work at Disneyland I'd have them all the time. Really really weird work dreams when I worked at Disneyland. Maybe it was the costumes? (Marci - you do stage costuming... do you have weird work related dreams too?)
If you didn't already know, I worked as Snow White at Disneyland in college. When you're "on set" it means you're out in the park interacting with the guests in character. When I was working there, Snow White didn't have a fixed location like the princesses do now. I generally did my sets out by the Wishing Well or around the castle and more often than not, did my sets without a host to help with the lines and crowds so you got really good at reading people's watches and working a crowd so you could get backstage for a break on time. In that area by castle there are a lot of birds - ducks, sparrows and two swans - which I would point out to the kids acting like I could talk to the birds like Snow White would in the movie... even though the birds would fly away as soon as they were done eating the popcorn on the floor.
Anyway. I had one dream where I was on set like any other day out by the Wishing Well in front of the castle when it suddenly hit me. I HAD THE POWER TO CONTROL THE BIRDS!!! I was like freaking Aquaman of the air. So, I spread my arms out and did my little bird call (which of course, in my dream was the high note that Snow White sings in the dancing scene with the 7 dwarves and the animals in the cottage... even though I couldn't sing that if my life depended on it) and the sparrows came and landed on my arms and the swans crawled out of the moat and the ducks waddled toward my feet and gazed at me in all my bird control glory. Even the killer hawk that was known to take out the ducklings around the castle stopped his murderous spree and landed on top of the wishing well to do my bidding.
The crowd around me gasped, whispering things like "oh my gosh, she's the real Snow White" (because apparently in my version of the Snow White movie, she was a superhero with the ability to manipulate birds) and I spent the rest of my set showing the crowd how awesome my bird control skills were. No one needed me to sign autographs or pose for pictures with them (which should have been evidence enough that this was a dream) they were all content to watch me make the birds lift my cape or bring me a rose or whatever crap I made them do. Within minutes, management got wind of my ability and wanted to take advantage of it sending me off to do shows and special events involving birds.
Of course my dreams are never that cohesive for long and if I recall correctly, I think this one ended up where somehow I was also approved for character work as Peter Pan because I had the ability to fly. Or that might have been another dream altogether. Seriously. I had the super ability to control birds and fly in my dream and I used it for a job at a theme park. What is wrong with me?
I do have a lot of weird and crazy dreams. If I remember them when I wake up I try to tell someone right away so they become more permanent memories. Maybe I should blog them here too. I've had a few that upon waking make me think "holy balls, that would be an awesome movie" so maybe if I blogged about them, I'd retain the inspiration to write another screenplay. Like Stephen King. Except probably not as scary. And it would probably involve me. And superpowers. Or something like that.