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Books Hamlet

Published on February 21st, 2013 | by Thompson


Hamlet is Giving Me Nightmares

I realized I hadn’t shared a dream except through a comment on Angel’s blog, so I thought I’d share one I’ve had since reading Hamlet. I work at NBC Montana as a videographer/editor/production technician and have come to despise my job in just under two months. This hatred has seeped into my dreams it seems, as I awoke in a cold sweat a few nights ago. This is what I remember, which is all we can do:

I was at the station about to start work and all my fellow employees were there. My girlfriend decided to sit in on the show and was sitting next to me as we were about to start. Then, suddenly the computers started freaking out and one of the monitors “grew” a mouth and began talking. It was straight out of 2001: A Space Odyssey. The voice even sounded like Hal.

My director was the first to go. The moment my director touched the board trying to shut Hal down, sparks flew, and my director was fried. Then my executive producer ran in. Hal ejected a sound cord, wrapped it around his throat, and choked the life out of him. My girlfriend and I were obviously terrified and began running through the station for the door as cords reached for us. As we ran past the anchor desk, one of our reporters, who was setting up for a live shot, fell dead. Her death played on the televisions around the station. Then our anchor collapsed on the anchor desk. Our floor director was wrapped up in the fetal position in the corner of the studio as both our cameras closed in on her. I never saw if she made it. My girlfriend and I ran out to the lobby as our sports anchor struggled with the printer, which had a firm hold on his necktie, banging his head against already bloodied pages of paper in the tray. I reached for the door, my girlfriend in hand, and escaped, only to awake before she made it out the door.

So what does it all mean? Well, actually, I think I have a pretty good grasp on it thanks to Hamlet.

To me [Denmark] is a prison.

Why then your ambition makes it one. ‘Tis too narrow
for your mind.

O God, I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a
king of infinite space—were it not that I have bad dreams.

Which dreams indeed are ambition, for the very
substance of the ambitious is merely the shadow of a dream.

My hatred for my job had manifested in this dream and my subconscious was warning me of a bleak future so I could otherwise avoid it. A week before the dream occurred, our sports anchor told me he was ready to move out of Bozeman and find something that paid better. There’s no money in the news for those of you wondering. Then, a few days before the dream, my director told me he was quitting at the end of March. The next day, one of our reporters came in asking my director to make a copy of her resume reel so she could job search. It seemed everyone was leaving except our floor director, which is why I never saw if she made it out alive.

The fact that I did make it out alive means this disaster is avoidable, but the fact that I awoke before I saw my girlfriend break the threshold is concerning. You see, my girlfriend and I had already decided to move into a condo together in Big Sky, and after just two months of dating. Like I said in previous posts, I don’t live life by a plan or formula, and never intend to. When Dr. Sexson told us to go out and make mistakes, I was already miles ahead of everyone, but how will you ever know if you’re right for each other if you’re unwilling to make that mistake? Frankly, it’s only a mistake if you don’t learn from it. If you learn from it, you’re not mistaken, you simply misjudged, mistimed, or missed a sign. Hindsight is 20/20, but dwelling on it isn’t healthy nor is it fun.

I didn’t take action immediately, though. I thought I could keep the job and commute, but realized my girlfriend, who already hates my job and its hours, would not abide two more hours away from her. The day I woke from the dream I started applying for jobs in Big Sky, and though I may be under-qualified for some and over-qualified for others, I’m willing to take whatever comes my way. I’m willing to sacrifice my career goals, which happen to be in journalism and television, to save my relationship. But I needed the dream to wake me up. Without the dream I would not have been motivated to escape with my girlfriend.

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About the Author

When Thompson isn't busy writing for Go Gonzo Journal, you may find him drunk at the movie theater with Professor Heinous or stirring up trouble in a bar with his attorney. Thompson also enjoys skiing, hiking, camping, and watching and betting on baseball and football.

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