On Potatoes And Eggs, or Notes For The Stranger Dreams

I have the habit of keeping several writing notebooks, each dedicated to one type of text — one for journaling, one for ideas, another for quotations, another for writing down my dreams/nightmares, etc. Coincidentally, I have the habit of dreaming (or having nightmares) with the weirdest things in the world, and they are usually dreams whose events intersect between banal things we all dream about and a strange thing that makes no sense at all during those moments of sleep-fantasy. Like the nightmare I had last night: I dreamed I was leaving the university when people came running to warn me that an accident had happened near there and that my mother had been the victim of a run over, dying on the spot. So far, “okay,” a nightmare with nothing unique to anyone, dreaming the sad dream of a loved one’s death is probably commonplace in this world of billions of people. This nightmare became strange, however, when shortly after being informed that my mother had lost her life at the scene of this accident, a small robot about three feet tall came running — or rather, sliding rapidly because it was moving on wheels, approached me and lifted me off the ground, carrying me to the place of the event; while it was carrying me, the little robot exclaimed in a desperate way “Save the potatoes! Save the potatoes! We’re running out of eggs!”.

Don’t ask me. Just… Don’t. Perhaps Freud could explain it because I can’t. Usually after nightmares like this I don’t even bother calling to see if the people involved are okay, because it’s such a weird kind of dream that it gives me no cause for concern.

The thing is, I like the strange. I like the weird, the unconventional, the different, the daring, the sarcastic, what is seen as useless by all. I like what oddity represents; studying its meanings and seeking interpretations for what or who is bizarre is perhaps the best way to understand seemingly incomprehensible mysteries, above all things. The meaning and influence that dreams possess in the human psyche is widely researched and disseminated by and for all, it is common to get on Google to look for what this or that which has happened in our minds while we sleep might mean. Classical social psychology has for many years been saying that the psychosocial man grows and shapes himself as a being through a mixture between his psychological development and his historical development. It is as if the facts of the environment in which we live provoke both impulses inherent to us since our birth and new impulses of character — this is what is called static and dynamic adaptation. Our actions formulated by basic instincts and influenced by the social environment are static adaptations that we suffer within our coexistence in society. Actions that we might consider divergent from everything we thought we were before are our way of adapting dynamically to our niches. It is static to love, it is dynamic to kill in the name of love — cruelly, that is.

It is always thinking of these concepts that I try to decipher what my mind is trying to say by presenting me with such strange dreams. As an example, I try to analyze the dream mentioned above: the fear of losing our parents is understandable, it is a crude, archaic and typical sentiment of man. But why on earth did I dream of a robot screaming random things? I seek explanations in the historical time in which I live. Maybe it’s because I breathe technology, like every young person of Generation Z? Maybe it’s because I read a little book about androids in the last six months? Maybe it’s because a day before the dream I had a heated discussion with a friend about an interview that Isaac Asimov gave decades ago on the dangers of technology addiction he could only imagine in his science fiction and eventually , it all came true? I really don’t know, there are countless possibilities. And it goes beyond my ability to try to understand what the robot’s words meant. Only what we can be sure of, from all this (beyond what we all already know — that death is the only certainty we can have) is that the mind is really a fabulous and powerful thing, it can make us human and it can turn us into monsters, as a Chinese poet once said. These are peculiar days to be alive — we have never had access to information so freely, never before have people refused so strongly to see the truth before their eyes. It is the same dynamic with our minds, but on the contrary — we have never come close to unraveling its secrets, we have never before been so arrogant as to think that we have learned more than half of what we have to learn about our psyches. Ignorance is a blessing when it protects us, it is an illness when it deeply damages the constitution of our beings. An enlightened mind is prone to be constantly wounded, but a mind that remains in the dark for a long time will eventually blind us with the sharpness of the veil of ignorance.

For now, I’m just gonna save the potatoes. Because apparently, the eggs will be gone soon.

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Poli Gomes

brazilian law and humanities student, reader, writer. proud latina.