Ivory or Horn, Whatever

24 April 2001

The interview went well. Actually, I'm not even sure how much of it was the interview. When the nice director lady said she wanted to discuss my teaching experience, it seems that her major question was not, "Can we hire this person?" but rather, "How much advice do we need to give her?" She's enthusiastic. I'm excited. So. I'm teaching a writing fiction class for high school students in the fall, if I can get at least eight kids. If I can't, we'll try offering it again in the winter and spring. If you know any high school kids in the Hayward area....

I've been reading Nalo Hopkinson's Whispers from the Cotton Tree Root, when I'm not reading Zelazny for my article. I've discovered that I'm not particularly interested in Caribbean fabulist fiction. Nalo's stuff is cool, but it's not just that it's a different culture than I'm used to. She does better with it than that. I know, because some of the authors in her collection leave me totally cold. Also, we got our latest Analog, finally. They had a little problem with the address change. But all is well now. Sort of. I think they still owe us an issue, but I shall wait. It's not like I'm lacking in stuff to read. I just need to stop going to the library until I get caught up, but I keep having to go for work.

My dreams have been disturbing lately. Last night was the worst, though. Saturday night I dreamed that I was being attacked, but then Lars came and saved me, and we hung out. Sunday night I dreamed I was giving a totally incompetent critique on a story of Mary Anne's. (There was a dog in the story, and I was convinced that the dog was supposed to be Cerberus. But Mary Anne had only given the dog one head. I accused her of incompetence. She said, "But, Marissa, it's only supposed to be evocative of Cerberus!" I said, "How many heads does Cerberus have, hmm? How can you evoke Cerberus with only one head?") But last night, I dreamed that a slight acquaintance of mine, someone I'm unlikely to see for at least a few years now, was doing something really horrible. Not just the level of horrible where I would say, "Oh, X, I dreamed you were robbing a bank!" and everybody would laugh at the very idea. Nope. This was a nasty enough thing to do that it wasn't a joke.

The worst part is, it was plausible. Not just in the dream, not in a nightmarish way where people you trust have gone nuts and are not themselves. This is worse, because I woke up, and with the cool, reasonable light of morning said, "Wow. If someone told me that X had done Y, I would believe it." It's not X's fault that I had this dream. But I'm glad I'm not going to be seeing X, because this dream made it very hard for me to see X in the same light.

I've had minor examples of this phenomenon with dream conversations. Every once in a long while, I have a dream conversation that's so vivid that it feels like I really had it with the person in question. Then I have to be careful to sort it out, or people get really freaked out. Not as freaked out as they do when I accurately remember conversations that actually did happen, of course. But freaked out just the same. Those didn't usually change my view of a person, though.

I know that dream and memory are supposed to be the gates of ivory and horn. I think memory is supposed to be ivory, but I can never remember. I suppose it would make sense with elephants never forgetting and all, but I'm not sure they were thinking about that at the time. Whoever they were.

I'm sending out another story today. And no news is...no news. But at least I get to teach my class. No way are they calling me "Miz Lingen," though. Even less way are they calling me, "Mrs. Gritter." It totally freaked me out that Tennille is "Miss Davis." And now Marnie is Senora Kemmetmueller. Nobody should ever be Seņora Kemmetmueller, so I have a feeling that her students call her Seņora K. I hope so. Which would make her Mrs. What(sit). And if Rebecca and Curt stick together, Rebecca can be Mrs. Who. So we only need a Mrs. Which.

I really love that book.

Later. Sarah and Tim agree that ivory and horn are true and false dreams, not dreams and memory, but they disagree on the source of that: Virgil vs. Homer. Oops.

In the meantime, it sounds like someone is drawing on our parking lot with squeaky markers. I can't see any reason why it would sound like that. Oh well....

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