Juste une fable n° 55


 dreamscapes (betrayals) n° 24 






Mary Shaw


so it was late when i happened upon that set for some sort of television show with tina. and it was after i decided i had to use an ipad, a video game, or other digital screen of some sort to rescue sarah's teddy bear, which she had cast far beyond the ship, the boat we were all going to take to the bahamas.

why was it your job to save the teddy bear?

i have no idea, but this was the task given to me, and i was bound and determined to do it. so i tried first with my own computer. slowly and carefully i brought up the image of the teddy bear and the boat, and i was glad to see that just by happenstance the bear had floated a little backwards toward the ship, so that if i could just grab it with the mouse and flick it on board, i would be done with this petty if particularly important operation.

but no deal,

or no dice.

my mouse would just slide over the spot where the teddy bear was. i couldn't begin with my own electronics to get a grip. and that made me begin to wonder about the whole world of digital instruments in general. are they really doing anything that can affect the world of substance? or is the impression that they do just something that we tell ourselves in dreams?

anyway, these kinds of musings didn't really dissuade me from trying to do what i thought i was supposed to be doing. so the next step, as it always, or at least usually, is for me, was to ask someone, somebody with more of something or other than me, for help.

i went to tina,

you often do.

because she had an instrument that was more powerful, that did lots more things than mine did. and tina was fundamentally generous, i knew that she'd lend it to me. so i borrowed tina's ipad, which was curiously a rather huge contraption with a screen that was closer to 11 by 17 than anything small or petite. and i guess what made it a pad was just that it was perfectly flat, with no keyboard or connection to other contraptions which would tend to make you want to reproduce something outside it

i think you mean, want to print.

so i sat down on a bed with that ipad, and began once more to try to fish sarah's teddy bear out of the sea. but since tina's mouse wasn't getting any more traction than mine had, i allowed myself next to get distracted and swallowed even into that whole other scene...

and what was happening there were ladies, a number of ladies, coming into a space like a dressing room. and they were deciding amongst themselves and for myriad reasons, that it was time for each and everyone of them to undertake a career change and get in shape.

and it was this dressing-room, where the little bed which i was sitting on happened to be, that actually turned out to be the antechamber of a television studio. all of these ladies were contestants in a game show,

chosen by tina,

whose very purpose was in fact to encourage women and remunerate them for making a spectacular effort to transform themselves and their lives.

and the mc would put them all through various grueling kinds of exercises, including rock climbing, firefighting, and biking as well as brazilian thigh and mustache waxing, weight lifting, and putting their hair into curlers, not so much because any of these activities were thought to be necessary to whatever it was they wanted to become, but because

if they could do all this, they could also do that.

and though i personally was still sitting there trying to fish a teddy bear out of the water in a way that wasn't working, with a mouse from a screen, when i thought about their game and what they were trying to accomplish, all things told, i sort of had to agree.

i was particularly impressed by two wiry brunettes who were in their midforties and who'd decided they wanted to commit their whole lives to acting and tv. they were so energetic, so determined to make each one of their moves correctly, that i thought, yes, today, in the era of reality tv, even though these ladies don't have an ounce of mystery or pathos to them, even though you can't imagine them ever having the surprise of an emotion, or a teardrop forming on their lash, or conversely a trickling of music pouring through their ears, they probably will make it somehow

to the height of the stars.

but even though i could tell they were succeeding in this astounding way, since they were getting where they were going through sheer determination, i couldn't help being more intrigued by something going on behind the scene. it was the director of the game show, who was a handsome, gay gentleman, somewhere in his late fifties, asking the stage manager, if she had a moment and could talk.

his name was al, and hers, she was french, was martine.

when martine asked al what was up, he told her that he had split up with his boyfriend of about 15 years. and she was, well, not really knowing what she could say to make him feel better about what must be, given his age, his temperament, and his circumstances, a terrible loss.

so she just tried the usual, saying, al, you know how wonderful, how handsome, how attractive you are. if you want to, pretty soon you'll find someone else. but al, though appreciative of what was meant after all kindly as support, just looked at her blankly and let more than a few tears spill from his eyes. he knew he'd never find another love as long as he stayed in this dimension. but at least he remained aware that there had been and could be such a thing.

and strangely,

this courage to expose himself and to keep trying on this flatest plane

at the same time that he remembered

what he was supposed to keep seeking, losing and finding in the depths,

made me love al.

you feel close to him,

and think somewhere we could be together, maybe after i find the way to land that teddy bear in our ship.

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