dreams come true
I've last talked to Martin by the red wooden bridge connecting the old park, island in the middle of the river, to the rest of the town. He was going to relocate to another city due to some personal business he didn't want to discuss with me. We've met up to say goodbye, where we once used to play as kids and ended up discussing the upsides and downsides of our daily lives
“Every day in, every day out same shit! Work, eat, sleep, repeat. There's the occasional holiday. Fortunately. There's also the one hour break here and there, but even that won't suffice. Of course I also have the yearly holidays booked to go elsewhere, can't afford more than one each year, and that's still far from enough. I just work way too hard for way too many hours. There has to be a better remedy for this automaton life style that keeps going on regardless!”
“But John, there is! You got to check the new saloon I've been telling you about” said Martin.
The saloon Martin was talking about was truly a dream saloon, in the real sense of the word. A place where you jumped into a capsule and had a dream injected into your mind through signals at brainwave length, that aren't directly perceived and translated by the brain. In fact they are very weak signals, yet they are still noticed by the brain, to a degree high enough to stimulate the mind and invoke certain thoughts and feelings. The dream you have still depends on your preferences and saved dream settings, which are of course all stored into your personal dreaming account.
“I've been there. Done that. It's not real and you got to live your life. Live in the real world and experience what's actually real.”
“See? This is why you have your problem.”
“What do you mean,” I asked completely baffled by his reply.
“You got to accept the real world simply isn't the way you want it to be and move on. If you want to enjoy your life, then try doing it in a way that is achievable.”
“What do you mean? I do manage to enjoy my life. It's just that ...”
“... things aren't really the way you want them to be? That's your problem! The dream saloon can make everything appear just the way you want it to be.”
“Yes, but only in my dreams,” and at that point I stood up and walked away. There was no reason for us to quarrel and I was so frustrated I would have done just that, had I not walked away that very moment, leaving Martin alone on the bench in the park.
It was a leafy autumn. The strong breeze was flushing dust in my face, while the plastic bags blown away from the grass were all hanging on my legs as I quickly ran off, and that's how that memory remained in my mind like a dream.
When you dream, your other thoughts are suppressed. With our dream enhancing capsule the influence of your other thoughts are suppressed even more.
You could view your dream session as a form of forcefully induced meditative treatment. It's relaxing mind and body, and it gets rid of all your stress. Iron out the stress!
Smokey saloon air was covering wooden shaved panels behind a tidy bookshelf with new covers that haven't been touched. Empty glasses amongst bottles of lambrini and pilchards where cluttering the table. Only one glass had martini in it.
“What's the matter mister Goyan? You usually don't bother us with such unnecessary drama. Why is there all of a sudden any need to discuss such problems, which you simply made up based on your doubts and mistrust in us?”
“It's just too damn obvious you are stealing from my share of the deal.”
“Your fears have no logical foundations,” the man clutched his hands and pressed them to his lips while widening his eyes and staring intently at Goyan.
“My fears are based on your new contract, which indeed has no logic whatsoever. You're just robbing me of more money,” replied Goyan with sarcasm.
“More money?” another man asked. “You are just needlessly escalating the problem,” he spread his hands wide with his palms towards the ceiling.
“At first the contract was a fifty fifty share which already was highway robbery, as I am the inventor of the dream machine and therefore should rightfully claim a bigger share from the earnings.”
“Mister Goyan, let me explain to you how much work we have done not just advertising your wonderful gadget, which is really amazing by the way, but we have also made necessary investments to improve it and market it to a wider public more cost efficiently,” the first man continued.
“Don't interrupt me! Let me finish talking.”
“Oh please go on...”
“Now the new contract states you guys have a 55% share, while I have just a 45% share, which puts you in control over it. Basically you can dictate whatever happens. This is not right! This is stealing, it's unlawful, it is illegal …”
“No, no, no! Let me explain. What we counted as 55% in the contract are assets. It is carefully explained in great detail. If you would have taken the time to read it properly you would understand it is referring to what we, your business partners and therefore closest supporters, managed to achieve with our smaller share of the deal. If you remember we started at 30% of the deal.”
“You're robbing me of my money and I won't let this happen anymore,” Goyan stood up, put his hat on and walked immediately out the door.
From a TV broadcasted advert:
“My life as a manager ain't easy. I sometimes work myself into complete exhaustion. Last I did 14 days in a row. The hardest part is to chase those morons and yell at them what to do, because if I don't do it nobody does it and how would the business run without me? I'm in charge, I'm the manager and nobody else can do my job. The guy who's supposed to work as manager sits on his ass and plays online poker all day, while I run the pub, telling people what to do, not him.
But none of this matters, as long as I can take even an hour rest in the dream machine, all my anger and stress and bad temper fades away.”
Subtitle: Harold Wood, Trainee Manager at the local pub Filthy Snail.
Choose living your dream, choose the Slumber Saloon!
The other day I took Charlie to the wellness center, being sure he'd enjoy it.
“Seriously. If you haven't been in the dream capsule yet, then you can be sure you're the last person to check it out!” I told him.
“Give me a break, John. Just because you tried it out first, doesn't mean anything. But do tell me please why the contract asks me to agree with such silly conditions?”
“It just says that if you ask for inappropriate dreams that could cause you permanent traumatic stress disorder, it's entirely your fault alone, which makes sense.”
“If I ask to dream of being raped, it's my fault. But then what if I accidentally think of something I shouldn't be thinking of and it occurs within the dream sequence?”
“That's not going to happen unless you tamper with the capsule, which is stated to be prohibited.”
“And why does it say I could be banned if I interfere with other people's dreams? What if someone hijacks my dreams when I'm in trance inside the capsule?”
“Don't worry. We aren't connected to any network,” said the instructor as she took the signed contract out of Charlie's hands.
The reception of the saloon was a black desk with one single operator holding a laptop and a headset with microphone, to communicate with the dreamers when their time expired. The hourly rate wasn't inexpensive compared to gym prices.
The dark blue room stretched out alongside the teal carpet in the middle, with capsule lined up on both sides. Above each dreaming capsule there was a TV panel flashing highlights from the customers' dreams, if they allowed them to be displayed. Otherwise one of the standard commercials would make its appearance.
For a second I got captivated by one of the commercials.
“How much does it matter what we know and what we don't know? What's the nature of reality? We could be mere thoughts. What are we? We come we live we go, just like a dream, there is only the afterthought left once it's gone and then it fades away or gets forgotten due to better dreams.
“However we at the Slumber Saloon believe that if we dream together our dreams become reality. The existence of others confirms to us that the dream we are living is real!” said the voice coming out of the TV screen while sequences from random dreams were flashed over the screen.
As I finished watching the commercial two times over I found myself with no other option than to enter my own reserved capsule, since the rest of the room was quite a desolation, devoid of anything other than silence and the desk lady browsing whatever stuff she was bestowing a calm smile on her young face.
Binaural beats and silent brainwaves were announced to be streamed in the background once I entered the capsule. A menu prompt asked what I want to dream about, telling me to focus on a certain thing I much desire and that my brain is being scanned. “Any other details?” the interface voice then asked.
“Would you like a drink?”
“Apple vodka martini ...” and that instance I found myself leaning back on a comfortable folding beach chair, with a glass of my requested drink in my hand. There was a sudden sensation of nearly spilling the drink on myself and so I jumped forward awaking back inside the capsule I stepped in.
There was a strange alarm sounding outside the capsule and as I opened the door upwards, I realized it wasn't my machine beeping. The next thing I saw was Charlie being consulted by the desk lady about his well being.
“Sorry sir, apparently there was a disturbance within the system and I had to turn off all capsules according to emergency protocol,” said the desk lady turning her head to me swiftly.
“Emergency protocol?” I murmured before myself. What emergency could there be when all you are doing is dreaming?
“The capsules automatically scan for unwanted nightmares,” replied the lady.
“Unwanted? Who would want them nightmares?” complained someone else within the angry crowd of unsatisfied customers. All perfect dream addicts.
“I just wanted to try out a nightmare first of all,” interrupted Charlie before any argument could ensue.
“Wow, wicked dude here.”
“Some tough guy, eh? Has no fear of wicked dreams.”
“I think nightmares should be banned, but it's still an acceptable dream of choice at the moment,” replied the desk lady. “However you sir, should have warned me in advance you were going to initiate such a dangerous dream sequence.”
“Am I still dreaming? I got such a lovely lady in front of me,” said Charlie.
She showed her wedding ring, to which Charlie replied:
“Oh well that proves it then, I'm awake!”
“Think about it! If this is a dream then you'll wake up from it and realize it wasn't real. How would you feel?” asked Charlie still excited about his new experience with the slumber saloon as it had been his first visit.
We were walking out. In fact we were kicked out because Charlie kept insisting on trying out a nightmarish dream sequence, for which the slumber saloon had no regulations regarding health and safety set in place to protect the customer and could therefore not allow him to continue his masochistic experience.
“Or maybe this isn't real,” he continued. “Maybe we are just game characters in a simulated reality.”
“This could be just a dream, but if you never wake up from it, then you will never know for sure that,” I replied.
“If you could wake up, at least the memory of your dream will survive. Death however is like a passing dream, fading away after you wake up from it,” said Charlie to which I turned around and stared at him.
Advert from the breakfast radio:
I am working in a professional environment. It causes a lot of stress and hard work which is not easy to deal with. Basically my colleagues help out, since they got nothing to do when they finish their bit fast and nobody gets paid to do nothing, so it's only natural that they should help me. Don't get me wrong, it's not like I am not moving fast, I am the fastest there is, if not for me then all the opportunities to gain bonuses would be taken by my colleagues. But I am never late to notice exploits within the work environment and take advantage of them first.
The thing is, I like to keep myself away from germs. They are everywhere and as such I wear gloves all the time, never taking them off before I finish work. Not even if my colleagues are being silly and nag about them dripping water, which any gloves would do after a very short toilet break. If I am just making coffee, of course I won't change my gloves when they are perfectly intact. The water will dry up in no time regardless.
Actually I no longer think that place is for me. However my dreams at the slumber saloon help me visualize the work place in a better light. A place where coworkers know how to help when I just can't take it anymore or one where the boss appreciates my lengthy contemplation to find the most precise solution to the tasks I get, instead of promoting those who rush through their work and finish fast with whatever good result they can find. At least I know what to strive for.
Tony has envisioned the world that won't hate and leave him out. He has a goal in life to aim for. Have you found a purpose in your life?
“I started this research to see why I can control my dreams, while others can't. Why is it that scientists deny that which they do not understand or experience for themselves? Perhaps I am wrong in judging them as I too would be a disbeliever if I didn't have this! Gift!” Charlie had read out the words in the newspaper from an article, regarding the mysterious disappearance of Goyan, who invented the magical dream machine. Those were his words from an older interview, which were now added to a new article, because the disappearance wasn't dramatic enough on it's own.
“You don't need to be so dramatic about it. If you think it's best to not support the slumber saloon, then just don't do it. After all they had you banned for an entire month.”
“Sure mister Goyan didn't magically disappear into thin air, or you believe he committed suicide, although he had a fortune to live of for the rest of his life and then hid his own body?”
Charlie had always been a conspiracy enthusiast. His points being ignored without any counter arguments other than mere denial, trained him to react with tossing all the sarcasm he could muster to gather in one single moment.
“I don't know what happened. However he might just stay away from the public eye, either intentionally or by coincidence.”
“The article references the conflict between Goyan and the business sharks he stroke a deal with. It happened just over a week ago and it gave the news channels a new topic for their endless repetitive gossips.”
“So you're saying it's wrong to use the slumber saloon for recreational purposes?”
“Keep in mind you're funding people who might have paid someone to get rid of the one person who could have hindered their business. It's not just a moral issue. You are wasting time and money to experience the fake reality found within your dreams.”
Charlie's words made me stop for a moment and ponder deeply.
“You aren't saying this because you were banned, are you?”
“I'm just trying to help you get over it and realize that it's not really that interesting as it seems,” said Charlie and his words made me freeze even more in my thoughts. “The rumor that Goyan got locked in a capsule and is held captive somewhere, kept hidden so he wouldn't interfere with the business, can't be that far from the truth.” Those last words snapped me back to reality, clearly telling me that Charlie was still bitter about the incident from the month before.
Article from Hi-tech Magazine of Scientific facts:
My name's Sandra Gertrude and as you all know or should know, I am the senator's personal professional secretary.
The daily tedious work consists in sorting papers, going through files and folders stored on the pc and also taking phone calls. The busiest part is when the senator has guests over and I got to run and make coffees
Phone calls might seem to you like an easy task since everyone, including me, talks on the phone for hours to their family and friends. But let me tell you one thing and I'll make it very clear. Phone calls you take at the office aren't anything like those you do at home or casually. First of all you got to actually be professional and in order to be professional on the phone, you got to be qualified to do it properly. Being polite and keeping calm is one thing, but that alone doesn't make you suitable to answer calls.
Oh and you got to make sure you don't cuss. Hehe.
It is indeed stressful when all these guys are calling me on the work phone and talking for hours. They are usually individuals the senator invited over to his office to discuss important matters I imagine. I just can't fathom why they don't just admit to their perversion and ask me my private number, bet even the women who call are into it. Everyone knows I'm hot.
Sure you might be thinking 'What is she talking about', but I've been very committed feminist campaigner for the past few months and it really opened my eyes. I want to feel like a lady and be respected and to be given attention in a more mannered and pleasing way, after all I put hours of effort to dress up the way I do. The last thing I want to hear are bad people talking behind my back calling me a tanned duck face.
Sandra is a blonde angel and one of the VIP guests at the slumber saloon. Her looks send some people thinking of heaven, of some kind or another. Who knows what kind of heaven she's dreaming of when she enters the slumber capsule.
For Martin Goyan selling recorded dreams or simulating them as an experience in a capsule, was never what he had planned to do. It just all came together one day.
As a brain surgeon with a strong inclination for physics, he had one day come across a new form of entertainment that could milk a lot more money than those before. Ads free of course, since ads were banned long ago due to moral and ethical reasons.
Martin's easy grasp on controlling his own dreams started from early on during his childhood. He still wasn't sure if it's mood dependent or actually have a more self conscious brain. What was clear however, was the denial and ridicule people answered him with, whenever he was telling about his dreams.
“Does it really matter if I am king with a prosperous empire filled with riches and glory? I could dream myself as an immortal warrior and make fairy tale characters look more realistic. After being cut in half, falling from a cliff, being run over by cars, having a meteor drop down on me or being shredded to bits by wild animals, I'm still alive and well. It's not like I wanted to die in my dreams, I just thought I let go. At least this proves that you don't die in reality if you die in your dreams.
“This is absolute control of the dreamworld, a realm where godhood is in a thought's reach.”
The lonely room lit by dim lights within the desolated building, was housing Martin's capsule powered by the gravitic currents emitted from the very ground below him. This way they wouldn't find him, he thought.
He had logged himself into an eternal journey. An adventure that would continue in the endless loop of the dream machine.
No longer was he able to cope with the fact that waking up from a dream where he had everything he wanted meant to loose everything he had.
“I wonder how long it will take till my body runs out and stops. My sensation of hunger was suppressed during dream initiation.”
Martin stared at the imaginary blue sky atop the the grassy hill, gently stroked by a warm breeze. Peace and quiet.
Whether money, the temporary happy thoughts of a dream or the joy of saving a human life, it's all part of a bitter dream that doesn't last, but comes to an end. We all dream in vain.
These are the thoughts of Martin Goyan who had locked himself inside a capsule, for days remaining hidden in this abandoned building. Mister Goyan will be put on life support, but the capsule shows the life signals to be still very strong. He is in no danger of dying.
You'll be surprised to hear this or perhaps not, but it's obvious Dreamworld Corp. officials celebrate more than anyone else the successful rescue. The failed suicide attempt means to them that the contract doesn't end and the rights won't be entirely passed over to Goyan's closest friend as stated in the document.
And that's when I realized Martin was the inventor of one of the greatest breakthroughs to ever be made. The slumber saloon was a trend setter, it made big news and although he had been my closest friend since childhood, I failed to see the connection, simply because I was too focused and too deeply drowned in my own daily misery. If all you do is to chase your dreams, you will loose touch with the reality around you.