This evening I was about to go to a particular coffee shop to read, but the thought suddenly popped into my head, "No, go to the night market first" -- even though that was very much out of my way. I tend to follow these random whims unless I have some good reason not to, so off to the night market I went.
On my way there, there was an electric scooter in front of me on the road, with a man operating it and a woman sitting behind him. The back of her short skirt was pinned to the scooter seat, but the sides were freely blowing in the wind. I idly thought, with the sort of perfunctory prurience which still strikes me from time to time even though it's been quite a long time since I was twelve years old, "I wish she would shift a bit in her seat and the wind would blow the whole skirt up. Maybe if I will it to happen, it'll happen." It was a shameful and ridiculous thing to think, and of course it didn't happen. At the next light, the scooter continued straight, and I turned right to go to the market.
Before going out, I had just finished reading the novel The Unseen by Mike Clelland, an author I discovered last year when I read his non-fiction book The Messengers: Owls, Synchronicity, and the UFO Abductee. Owls in connection with gray aliens are Clelland's specialty; he is known in paranormal circles as "the owl guy." Central to the plot of The Unseen (which of course also features owls and aliens) is a peyote-inspired painting called The Dream and a black T-shirt with the word dream printed on it. I discussed synchronicities related to this "dream" theme, and to the name Freeman, in my last post.
Almost the first thing I saw upon entering the night market was a man whose T-shirt had an enormous owl printed on it, covering almost the whole torso, and then a woman with a black T-shirt that said dream, exactly as in the novel. Less than a minute later, a man walked past with a gray alien head printed on his baseball cap, and then a Vietnamese woman with three gray alien heads tattooed across her cleavage. "Oh," I though, "it's going to be one of those nights," and it was. I wandered around the market for about an hour, and in that time I counted six different owl-themed T-shirts, plus a stand that was selling owl-themed ceramic chopstick rests, and so many instances of the English word dream -- in a Chinese-speaking country, remember -- that I lost count. Most of these were on people's clothing, so I didn't get a chance to photograph most of them, but I got a few. The first one I saw was this bath mat:
Immediately after I photographed that, two people with English T-shirts walked past. The first said "FREEMAN"; the second, "CHOOSE." All dreams come true, freeman, so choose your dreams well.
Here are two others I managed to capture, both on the backs of T-shirts:
There were lots more like this. These are just the ones I managed to snap photos of. Everywhere I looked, owls, aliens, and dreams coming true. "Where Dreamers Become Doers" made me think of my earlier thought about the woman on the scooter: "Maybe if I will it to happen, it'll happen" -- if our thoughts affect reality, then dreaming becomes a kind of doing.
After finishing at the night market, I was going to go home, but then I thought, "No, I think I'll still go to that coffee shop after all." On my way there, I was thinking about all the crazy synchronicities I had just experienced and wasn't paying overmuch attention to my surroundings. While stopped at a red light, though, I became aware of the scooter in front of me and -- you've got to be kidding me! Yes, it was that scooter again. I had been behind them when I was on my way to the night market and they were on their way to wherever they were going, and now an hour later we were both on our way back, and I was behind them again!
The light turned green, and I guess she was sitting a little differently this time, because her whole skirt immediately blew up in the wind, revealing -- whoop-de-doo, some random lady's underpants, not the slightest bit interesting or titillating. In fact, it made me angry. I felt like the sync fairies were mocking me: "Sure, we'll make your dreams come true. It's not our fault if you happen to have the dreams of a retarded twelve-year-old!" I pulled the throttle and passed the scooter, leaving it behind me as fast as I could. "Choose, freeman." Okay, here's my choice, you sick fucks: not this.
I arrived at the coffee shop, got my coffee, and sat down to read the Book of Mormon. (Yes, I'm aware of the irony here.) As fate would have it, my bookmark was near the end of the Book of Alma, and I proceeded to read about the final victory of the Nephite faction known as -- of all things -- the freemen.
At one point I got up and went to a sideboard to get some paper napkins. There was a brochure there about the different kinds of cakes you can order. I hadn't the slightest interest in cake, but I felt a sudden compulsion to open it. I opened right up to an owl staring at me:
I remember last time I read a Mike Clelland book, it triggered a sync-storm, too. But hey, it was my choice to read it, right?