The Dream Catcher
by Walt Trizna
Walt was a dreamer, but on occasion there were consequences. His wife, Joni, yelled, “Knock it off.” It was the dead of night, about three a.m., and approaching winter. Thank God the windows were closed or the neighbors might have gotten the wrong idea.
Joni often shouted, “Knock it off,” or “Leave me alone,” no matter what the level of the windows. However, their two cats were usually the problem, either trying to sleep beside her or getting into a scuffle. But in the wee hours of the morning, Walt was usually the guilty party.
Walt had a most active imagination, both day and night, and night was the problem. Day was good: as a writer, when his imagination was working at full-steam-ahead, that was beneficial. At night, full-steam-ahead was a drawback, especially for Joni.
His dreams were beyond vivid; they were an alternate life. He remembered them in great detail. Some he could recall clearly and think about them when awake. There were nights when he would revisit a location from past dreams to experience new adventures.
On one particular night, in his dream Walt was watching a baseball game. Sitting along the first base line he hoped to snag a foul ball. The problem was that none came anywhere near him, and the game was half over. Then it began; they started coming his way.
The balls, arching over the spectators, had a dream-like quality. Try as he might, Walt could not catch one. They sailed by just out of reach or were caught by someone else before he had a chance. For some strange reason, every time he tried to catch a ball he would hit the head of a blond-headed man sitting in front of him. After this occurred a few times, he heard the cry, “Knock it off!”
Walt had constantly been rubbing Joni’s head. He sheepishly said, “I’m sorry” and went back to sleep.
The following morning, over breakfast, he related his dream. Joni more or less took it in stride, for he’d been known to react to dreams with her on the receiving end. We won’t go into how many times he dreamt he was falling over a wall and wound up on the floor with a crash. Walt was not a small person. While they were eating, he joked, “Tonight I’m taking my softball glove to bed.”
Joni rolled her eyes, told him in no uncertain terms what she thought of the idea, and went to work.
That afternoon Walt rummaged through the garage until he found his old glove. When night came, he waited until Joni was in the bathroom and gently placed the glove between their pillows.
As she prepared to climb into bed, she saw the glove, shook her head and said, “You’re nuts.”
Lights out, Walt hoped to return to the game. Before long, he was once again seated near first base. Soon the foul balls began coming his way. One after another, his glove met them all. He was a catching machine. He couldn’t miss. That night Joni had a good night’s sleep. No mussing her hair.
Walt awoke refreshed with his glove on his hand. “Must have put it on during the night,” he said to himself. He got out of bed and immediately crashed to the floor, stumbling on the scattered baseballs.
Joni peered over the edge of the bed. “Not again,” she said. “This has got to stop. Remember the time you dreamed about trapping skunks? It took us a month to get the smell out of the house.”
That night, Joni had an idea. She waited until Walt began snoring and then began quietly whispering over and over, “Electronics. Money. Electronics. Money.”
Copyright © 2013 by Walt Trizna