Part 13: The Dreamer Sleeps without Dreaming


Part XII: Coda: Benjamin J. Schreiber Writes to Dr. C

So you see, Dr. C, it’s like I have these schizophrenic blue-movie skits, and sleazy hardcore videoclips, flashing through my nightmares and daydreams all of the time – night and day, and day and night. It’s not like I’m making them happen. It’s not like I’m writing the script. It’s not like I’m the director or producer, or anything – it’s more like, I’m just another spectator or bystander out there in the invisible studio audience, watching the skits and clips flash past. Or maybe I’m the invisible cameraman behind the invisible video camera, just rolling along and shooting the pictures, and watching and waiting for whatever happens next. I can’t switch the channel, or change the script, or rewrite the scene, or even make the whole stupid thing just stop!

You see, Dr. C, it’s like those schizophrenic blue-movie skits and sleazy hardcore videoclips just keep playing over and over again, in some kind of continuous tape-loop or endless cinematic flashback. They’re stuck on instant replay, or whatever – and sometimes the same scuzzy characters show up and the same crazy scenes keep playing like it’s déjà vu all over again, you know? Like there’s Georgie Gust, okay? There’s that Claudia Nesbitt – and there are maybe three or four other characters who keep showing up in different bodies or different egos, even though I know they’re really just the same creepy people. They’re the same creeps and perverts, the same suckers and chumps, the same bitches and yo-ho-hos – I already know – and they’re always stuck in some kind of perpetual jilted lover’s quarrel, or some self-destructive and abusive relationship. It’s like they just can’t get out of the same stupid trap, or get away from wherever they are – or even just make the whole world stop.

So sometimes, you know, Doc – sometimes I think that maybe they’re trying to tell me something. Maybe they’re sending me messages and beaming me signals through my daydreams, my fantasies, my nightmares and my wet dreams. Maybe, someday, it’ll add up to some kind of message or morale or something – like in those old-time movies and old-fashioned radioplays -or, maybe, like those fairy-stories, folktales and myths. But you know, they just don’t fit together; those schizophrenic blue-movie scripts and hardcore porno clips – they just don’t fit together, no matter how I try to write them down, or how I try to play them out, or how I try to shuffle them and juggle them into some kind of storyline or movie-plot. And then the whole stupid thing falls apart like some jump-cut, film splice flick or cut-up videoclip that didn’t really work – and it won’t get taped up, or glued down, or somehow stick together again – ever. No matter what I do.

So then, you know Dr. C, the only thing I can think is that maybe the whole world is crazy, and maybe I’ve gone crazy too – and the whole world’s getting crazier and crazier, every day, and in every way. Or like that Georgie Gust says to his shrink, somewhere in this whole crazy mess: in all his NYU undergrad, and Harvard graduate education, and all that Wakefield prep-school jazz, and all of that psychology, those humanities, that literature and art – it just makes him think how ridiculous he really is and how absurd everyone else is, too. It makes him think how the whole world is just wacko when you get right down to it. The whole world is stupid, and meaningless and empty. And then I think, well, if the whole world really is absurd, and everybody else is just as ridiculous as me, then why bother to write, or paint, or do anything? Why bother to make movies, or tell stories, or even get out of bed for that matter? Why even bother to go on living?

You know what I mean, Doc?

—Jonathan Harnisch

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