Thursday, January 26, 2012

I have a dream.

Published on behalf of Miss Moggs!

Hmmmn… Dreams are funny things aren’t they?

Normally we don’t seem to remember them, at least I don’t. Or they are all jumbled up and crazy. This one was different.

OK. Nobody psychoanalyses me, unless they say only nice stuff, ok?. ^_^ I know I am sometimes a bit crazy already ^_^

So. One morning a week or two ago my alarm went off like it usually does.

But this time it was different as it woke me from a really consistent, somehow more real, dream that seemed to have gone on all night.

I fumbled the alarm off and realised I felt pretty dopey and I was really chilled and still half in the dream. I got myself ready for work and I still felt really chilled and a bit weird as I set off. I wrapped up extra warm but still felt cold.

I had two songs running through my head from when i woke up, one Abba and one, maybe a shanty or folk song that mentioned 1843 or something. Like a sea shanty or gold prospector's song.

I figure I know where I got the Abba song I had watched the movie Mama Mia again a day or so before..

I wrote most of the details of the dream here about 8 hours after I woke and it was still really vivid, even if some of the details faded. I still have these scenes and flashes in my memory. It had seemed to go on for a really long time without the normal flitting all over stuff.

From details I remember of the dream I think the dream must probably have been set in Europe, in maybe the early to mid 19th century. Clothes, Locations, Transport and stuff I just knew in the dream.

I remember taking lots of journeys in stage coaches and carriages.

I remember seeing some sort of ‘steam leviathan’ was what I thought of it as in the dream. It had one front wheel and could carry people, or tow a carriage with them maybe? It was on a city or town street I think. I didn’t get to ride in it but I saw it. I was looking at the front of it and slightly to the left side of it and it was bearing or turning right. I can’t remember what colours it was painted.

At some point I remember speaking to someone in French, I was joining these people for a journey, I think and I just came out with greetings and chat in French. It seemed authentic to me at the time from what French I do know, but I guess it could have been nonsense, I remember a tiny concern my accent was good enough to pass without raising suspicion- but I think I mostly generally spoke English.

There seemed to be lots of travelling and intrigue and sneaking about in different outfits or disguises. Maybe doing something clandestine. I remember at one point, maybe even more than once, travelling dressed as a young man in something a bit like a simpler more tired version of what a regency dandy or maybe a Victorian gentleman might have worn.

Everything seemed a bit grubby and worn, buildings and clothes. Sometimes paths or the ground was just plain muddy, with grass maybe. Sometimes stones had been laid. None of the clothes looked properly ironed/pressed or even properly clean sometimes, the seams looked poor, puffy maybe?.

I remember in a conversation talking over some possibly cold war or maybe hostile relations with the French. I remember some other conversation about some group, communitarians? communists, communards something like that.

It was definitely in colour because I remember having to quickly disguise myself at some place that seemed like a cross between a country fayre and a farm yard, with big dilapidated looking wooden barn type buildings and canvas marquees.

There were these dancers maybe? People in uniform? costumes at any rate, with patriotic colours. Men and women. The dresses were concentric circles of red white and blue cotton sewn together, big ones of white and narrower of the colours. And there were coloured ribbons ties on the costumes and hats, maybe rosettes. I remember getting one of the outfits and putting on one of those dresses as a disguise to change my look. I think someone had it ready and gave it to me, maybe because I was followed? Then wandering out again in this costume hoping none of the others dressed like that said I was an imposter.There might have been bunting in places.

They reminded me a bit of English Morris dancers or old fashioned Greek soldiers' uniforms, but there were definitely women also.

I also remember seeing this carved painted wooden thing with representations of two women on it. It was mounted in a building. Maybe an inn or hostelry?

I remember two fit slim, taller than me, older women seemed to be very much in charge there, maybe giving me instructions, or advice and help?.

The steam engine didn’t seem to make sense to me so I googled it along with other stuff here is what I found:
Nicolas Cugnot on 23rd October 1769 demonstrated a self propelled three-wheeled vehicle in France primarily for towing artillery. Richard Trevithick (1771-1833) built the first self-moving engine in England. But I didn’t know any of that till I googled it. If I were asked I would have placed steam powered vehicles later than that.

As far as fashion goes the ‘regency period is roughly between 1795 and 1837.

Also French revolutionary wars with other European powers were 1792 until 1802, Napoleonic wars were from 1803 to 1815.

The US Civil war was 1861–1865.

The name Leviathan seems to be applied to anything huge and powerful, like the ‘Great Eastern’ ship or maybe Jupiter type steam engines in the US, but I get swamped by reference to steam punk when I check for the words, so couldn’t really find out much..

The S.S. Great Britain launched July 19 1843 by I. K. Brunel is the first of the large iron-hulled screw-propeller steamships that will dominate the transatlantic trade.

Alexander Bain a lieutenant in the Royal Navy patented a sort of primitive fax machine in 1843 would you believe and congress was authorising the first telegraph line between Washington DC and Baltimore . The typewriter was patented. I half expected ^_^ to find someone patented the TV but I didn’t, that had to wait till the 1930s. Not that I dreamed about fax machines, just that stuff seems to have been thought of so much earlier than seemed likely. Including Steam powered vehicles.

Google has various social reformers in the early 19th century founding rational and philanthropic communities based on common ownership. Robert Owen, founded New Harmony in Indiana, 1825, and Charles Fourier, whose followers organized other settlements in the US such as Brook Farm from1841 to 47. There were Communards in the 1871 Paris (France) Commune.

There was so much upheaval in parts of Europe and Latin America in 1848 it is known as the year of revolutions.

I am not really making out this is anything more than my having a lively interest in lots of things and maybe a good imagination.

I guess my subconscious must soak up way more than I thought. Stuff that is not how I intuitively thought it was. Does anyone else have odd dreams like this?

Still, there is this weird freaky little thought hiding right in the back of my mind. what if I hadn't had the alarm set?

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Legend that is Puss in Boots. P

This came out of a conversation in sl, about the Shreck spin-off movie over the holidays.

Why did they make him Spanish we wondered? Well the Movie cat came out of Shreck and that was playing fast and loose with fairy tales.

I thought it was pretty cool to mix Puss in boots with Zorro.

So we were all claiming the original PIB for our own and making a case for it.

After I looked it up. Wikipedia said he was French of all things! Not German and not English.

Published around 1697 by a French guy named Charles Perrault in a collection of eight fairy tales called Histoires ou contes du temps passé. Le Chat Botté.

Ah! I thought. He got it from somewhere else then. It seems the Grim Brothers did the same thing to him later on.

For me it is all mixed up with the tale of Dick Whittington Thrice Mayor of London, between the years 1397 and 1420 and the cat that brought him fortune and fame. Dick Whittington was absolutely a real person and remembered kindly.

I am sure I saw a Pantomime of it with the cat wearing boots once as a treat when I was little.

The Dick Whittington story was first recorded in writing in 1605 and turned into a play/pantomime the same year. "The History of Richard Whittington, of his lowe byrth, his great fortune."

There are suggestions the story in some form might come from Persia by way of a fifteenth century Italian source, the "Novella della Gatte". There is no doubt a cat was carved above New Gate Prison in London, because of Whittington's will.

I am pretty sure I saw the cat drawn in a story book when I was small wearing a pair of boots and carrying a handkerchief tied up on a stick with his belongings. He was standing by a milestone with the lad Dick whittington and Old London Town in the background.

I don’t think it matters so much if there were two cat stories, or one, or they got combined. They, or it, come from way back pre-medieval even and spread all over Europe going round and round maybe changing a bit. So I guess everyone was right in a way.

I just can't help thinking of PUB having Antonio Banderas' voice now. It is practically iconic. ^_^