We should be Entitled to Refunds for Bad Dreams
I had a dream last night. I was returning unwanted purchases to Costco. In the typically distorted nature of dreams, the building I was in didn’t actually look like Costco. Nor did the returns desk. In fact there were several returns desks, each one for a specific category of item: fresh groceries, packaged foods, electronics, clothing, household goods, etc. Because I was returning a stupidly large and mixed collection of shit, some of which I had no right to return, like thoroughly used underwear (which as it turned out wasn’t even purchased at Costco), I had to wait in each line to haggle with a different person at a different desk for every few items I was unloading.
I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right: What a horribly boring and stupid dream.
Of all the good and interesting dreams I’ve had in my life, most of them forgotten, why should one as insipid as this stick in my head, and why the hell would I share it?
It is precisely because the dream was so offensively tedious that it demands discussion.
I was robbed. We are only allowed so much sleep, only so many hours in a night, only so many dreams in a lifetime. Last night’s dream wasn’t a bad dream, in the casual parlance for a nightmare, but that in a sense makes it worse. At least with a nightmare we wake up relieved and may start the day with some cryptic lesson, like how we should address issues that have been causing us anxiety, better challenge our shyness, and prepare for a seemingly inevitable encounter with cannibalistic, potentially undead, home invaders. Good dreams are great, bad dreams may at least have some value, but lame dreams are completely useless and cheat us out of both sleep and dream time.
Last night I was cheated, a wrong made worse by the ignominious arrival of DST.
Sleeping has already lost some of its luster lately. With the asinine and unhealthy imposition of daylight saving time, sleep is less restful. The light leaves too late in the evening and rises too late in the morning. Enslaved to the arbitrary rule of clocks, I wake at 6am in pre-dawn darkness. I damn well should be sleeping. I should have the opportunity to reenter my dreams and remedy their shortcomings. By rights, I should be able to go back to sleep and stay asleep until the sun has risen and I have had a more satisfactory dream.
That should be the right of every person. If we are unsatisfied with a purchase from Costco, we are entitled to a refund. It follows that if we are unsatisfied with a dream, we should be entitled to a refund. Not a refund of money, but of time. So much of our time is already stolen by work, chores, mentally and emotionally unstable friends and associates, and the strictures enforced upon our society by capitalist vampires, that we truly cannot afford to squander more of it on dreams more mediocre than our actual lives. It’s bad enough that we already have to give up hours of our lives being bored at work, at school, and waiting in line at real-world Costcos. We shouldn’t be subjected to more monotony in our own private alone time in our rightfully magical brains.
We can dream about flying, breathing underwater, traveling through space, having orgies with supermodels and historical figures, eating our weight in deep-fried Snickers bars, or any number of worthwhile diversions. Any time that we don’t, rectification should and must be made.
When we wake from mundane and soul-crushing dreams, such as the one I had, and especially when we wake in darkness thanks to stupid, unhealthy, and anachronistic fucking daylight saving time like I did, we should send in a message to our work, or to whosoever has an unrighteous reservation on our time, that we just plain won’t be there when they’re expecting us, then we should go back to sleep. Whether we have a better dream to supplant the unacceptable one, or restful dreamless sleep, we should enjoy it in full. Then, afterwards, we can get up to go about our lives and responsibilities. That should be our right, respected by our employers or whoever else, and protected by federal law. To fulfill the American dream, we must constitutionally enshrine the right to dream in American law.