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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Smoker's Diary #2: Eternal Sunshine and the Spotless Phlegm

Photograph by Rob San Miguel
(Seoul 2008)
 
December 19, 2010

I
woke up this morning from the sound of rain. I still have chest congestion and yellow sticky phlegm was the first thing that greeted me in the bathroom. Phlegm does not supposed to have shapes but this one had, and it looked like a ball of sunshine suffering from a hangover. The rain stopped but the sky is overcast.  Last night, I had a weird dream with the entire cast of my company in it; it was so vivid and artfully done that I could swear it was written by Charlie Kaufman and directed by Michel Gondry. It was my 5-minute version of “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” but there was nothing spotless about my mind anymore. The 5-minute mixed narrative tackled everything from my hair, smoking, to flying clip boards (plural).  The dream ended with me standing next to a shoulder-high multi-coloured cabinet in the middle of the sidewalk.  Two of my co-workers, Weng and Sid, were approaching and as they passed me, Sid interpreted the meaning of the dream in one sentence without even looking at me. He said, “I think the length of the hair is a symbol or a representation of the changing psyche.” And both Weng and he, walking closed to each other, approached the misty horizon. Before they disappeared from the scene, I said, “write an essay about it, and I‘ll give you my old clothes,” and I opened one of the cabinet drawers and saw about four to five Topman shirts that I had never seen before, they were all dark except a  green one. Weng and Sid disappeared, then I woke up. 

It was peculiar that all the lines in this entire dream were in English. The weird thing about dream is that we often forget the first parts of the dream. It is scientifically proven that we mostly recall only the last part of the dream.  My apologies to all those who appeared in the first part of my dream, as I started to write this piece, the images in my head began to dissipate. The earliest scene that I could still recall was the street scene where every co-worker in the company was walking in different directions. The street looked similar to that particular street in Seoul that I love. Some of the teachers were wearing Topman jackets and Zara scarves.  Apparently, the dream’s costume design was a joint venture between Topman and Zara.

This is my fifth day without a cigarette.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and counting. My sister usually visits on the weekend and she smokes Marlboro menthol, with that black and green packaging, the kind that I like.  Today, she is not here.  1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and counting.

Next: Smoker's Diary #3

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