When I was young, our family lived in a house that backed up to a lake. There were a few reasons to live in fear. The most popular among my siblings was because we lived in Florida. Which meant alligators in any body of freshwater bigger than a roadside puddle. Actually, in the last few years, we’ve seen them in the ocean, too, but that’s another story. Back then, I couldn’t think of anything more scary than alligators. Of course, that was way before Justin Dweeber, reality TV, and Obama which are all more scary that alligators if you ask me! So the most immediate threat was not on the radio, TV, or in Washington, it was in our very own back yard. I remember at night there were 2 red lights that reflected off the sliding glass window. One was probably from the power button on the Apple IIc or something. But I always imagined they were the eyes of an evil alligator waiting to bust through the door and bite us. Every day we played in the grass and swam in the lake and I wondered where the alligators were. My dad would even swim across the lake a few times per week.
I’ve lived in Tennessee for a few years now and one of my favorite things is there are no alligators! You can swim in the area lakes with total freedom from being dragged under by a prehistoric dinasour-looking death machine. If you’ve never grown up with a daily fear of being preyed upon, you can’t truly appreciate this feeling of freedom I feel every day. But night time is another story. Alligators show up in Tennessee when I close my eyes to go to sleep.
They’re the kind of dreams that make you very thankful when you wake up that it was not real. One recent dream took place at my family’s beach cottage in Florida. There was a small alligator (oddly, it was about the size of a snake) near the shore. I started running because it was chasing me! Before I could get away, it latched onto my hand. To remove it, I held my hand above a fire that was nearby (how convenient!) and it burned up so all I could see was the skeleton. When I returned outside to show my dad, the alligator somehow got to me again! You know things are not going your way when a dead alligator bites you. Not good. Then later when it wasn’t paying attention I smashed it’s head with a MagLite flashlight. That’s what I’m talking about! However, if it was real life, I would’ve ran away like a scaredy cat, zig-zagging of course.
Any interpreters out there?
-Out of the Wilderness