This is all meant to be funny, but, in reality I have had some repeated nightmares lately and I have to be frank; I blame FACEBOOK! You know all those posts about the good old days. Pictures of Ward and June Cleaver sitting around the table with a meme saying “remember when you used to eat what you were served?” 8 track tapes, rotary phones and old black and white televisions. Yes, those things are giving me nightmares.
Take the 8 track tape for instance, you remember, those things getting stuck inside the player. Your very favorite music group getting stuck inside the player only to be driving down the road and pull it out only to see the endless crumpled yards of tape coming out, oh the horror. Put on the brakes! It’s got to be saved, yes that old Tammy Wynette tape singing D-I-V-O-R-C-E must be saved. Gently now, gently, pull out the remaining tape ever so gently only to find that it has and end that’s torn and tattered. Oh my heart, now it’s broken, the tears are falling and maybe just maybe you can save it, fix it or at least try. My goodness that thing cost you $2, by all means tape it together, glue it or whatever it takes, but, fix it for sure. It cost you darn near an hours worth of work.
Yes I have that dream. My favorite 8-track tape getting ate up in the player. In my dream I pull it out and the tape is never ending, it just keeps coming out and coming out until I am suffocated in a pile of that dreaded tape media. It has filled my entire car from floor to ceiling and I can hardly breath, it’s around my neck, I can’t see, I can’t breath, and then I wake up. Sometimes I have the same type of dream involving a cassette tape and player, but hose could be fixed. How many of you ever took them apart by removing the tiny screws and literally taping them back together and winding them back up? Con’t tell me you never did that.
Then there is that old TV post coming up all the time and they ask you who had to get up and turn the TV channels for their parents? Hey that was a real thing, it was serious. I always dreaded being the kid who had to be the TV channel changer. WOW, we only had 13 numbers, but only 3 or 4 of them actually worked if the weather was good and you had a fancy tall antennae on your roof. We never had one of those on the roof. We had aluminum foil or an old wire hanger, and yep I was a good channel conductor I guess because I often had to hold the wire or the foil to get better reception. I don’t miss that, they used to play the National Anthem at midnight then all you got was the snow and awful white noise, or maybe a buzz and a row of color blocks.
But, here’s my nightmare; my dad asks me to change the channel and I get up and turn it and the knob breaks off on a click that does not have any reception, OH THE HORROR! Do I turn around and show him what I’ve done? Do I run and hide under the bed leaving the knob lying on the floor? No, must get tape, yes tape fixes everything. Hey I fixed my 8-track and cassettes with tape right? Well, tape doesn’t work, I start to cry and the nightmare is over. It’s a nightmare just wondering if I ever got it fixed, LOL These are things my kids will not have the joy experiencing, what a shame.
Then there is the ROTARY PHONE nightmare! Oh, the rotary phone, the party line and the kind voice of an operator. I remember playing with the phone when I was little and accidentally, well not really accidentally, but accidentally on purpose dialing the operator. Hey there was a really nice lady who answered on the other end. Way back before caller ID wasn’t it fun to call people and hang up, or say funny things like “is your refrigerator running?” Then telling the person “they better go catch it!” But, my nightmare, yes, this is my nightmare. Now you may not know what a party line is so let me explain. If you could afford it you could have what they called a private line. This meant you could pick up the phone whenever you wanted and make a call, no problem. However, most people didn’t have the money or didn’t want to spend the extra to do that so you might have a party line with maybe 3-4 people sharing the same line. You might pick up the phone and hear your neighbor talking. Or when you are talking you just might hear the faintest click and that would indicate possibly your neighbor had picked up the phone while you were using it. I remember if you held your finger on the clicker and only let it come partway up you could listen and hear them faintly talking and they didn’t know, ha, ha, ha. Now don’t tell me you never did that?
So, to get back to my nightmare I have a party line and I am constantly listening with the clicker half open. I hear the neighbors talking and I write it all down. I take the information and write a book about everyone in the neighborhood, but, I don’t use the real names. The horrible part is that they all know it’s about them and they all know that I wrote the book and they come after me. They chase me in the dark, it always has to be dark when you get chased in a dream right? Oh, and it’s cold, I’m barefooted and they are chasing me with bats and rope because they want to tie me up and burn me. Now that is horrible. My heart is literally beating out of my chest, I am out of breath and I have even woke up unable to breath or move, and I’m cold and crying! Oh, the nerve of those neighbors! I never see the faces and they don’t say anything, however the fear is real and I just know they are going to tie me to a stake and start me on fire. I can be really dramatic I guess. But, the fear I feel when I wake up is so real. I’ve never got caught in the dream, but they get close enough that I can feel them reaching out and touching me. Barely grabbing at my clothes, yet they aren’t close enough to actually catch me. Writing this makes me laugh out loud right now, I am literally cracking up at myself. Seriously!
So please, can I just ask you all to stop posting those pictures of the good old days. Not really, I enjoy them and the memories they bring to mind. My nightmares? Well I don’t know why I have them, I guess they could be worse. I could be getting chased by a mummy or a vampire. I could be the last one alive in an episode of the Walking Dead. Maybe you could do me a favor and post pictures of cute fuzzy animals. No, on second thought maybe not. My next nightmare would probably be about cute animals chasing me and gnawing me to death or something. Maybe post cooking videos! Yes, nice cooking videos. Well, as long as I don’t have a nightmare about getting my hand caught in a mixer or accidentally in the blender, no, on second thought not cooking videos either.
Last but not least I want to post a picture of a man named Rod Sterling. Rod had this voice, if you heard it you would know it was him. He had this show called the Twilight Zone which was not necessarily scary, however, it was always bizarre and in a scary way if that makes sense. Anyway, this show was something I did not like to watch in the dark. It always came on at night, and it was usually late when things are quiet and you can hear the squeak or crack of an old house shifting with the wind or with the changing of the weather. Windows were loose and would rattle in the wind, branches would make shadows of people trying to scratch their way into your house. And your own shadow would always be lurking in the hallway, ready to jump out and scare you when you went to bed. Yes, I loved Rod’s voice, it would send chills down my spine and make the hair on my arms and the back of my neck stand up. I would get goose bumps walking to my room with my eyes closed and feeling the walls to find my way. Yes, and I would always have a nightmare after watching those old black and whites. I really thought those nightmares would cause my death, but that was over 40 years ago and I survived. I often watch them now on some of the old movie channels and I laugh at myself remembering how scared I used to get. Here’s to you Rod and your very scary voice. Oh yes, they used to show people on TV smoking. It was kind of cool and I guess considered sexy too!