I was just in the park, where I saw two guys sitting at a folding table. I couldn’t tell what they were doing at first, from a distance. Then one of the men began a motion that instantly telegraphed across the field and fired off a bunch of my memories; leaning forward over the table, his hands held low and palms down, he began to shuffle dominos.

Suddenly I remembered watching my great grandfather play Dominos with other old men his age, usually late at night, often under a naked yellow bulb, suspended from a cord overhead. I can still hear the click of the dominos as one of the old men would rake them into a pile and begin shuffling. I can see the cigarette dangling precariously from my great grandfather’s lips–one eye squinting against the smoke–as he “shuffled the rocks.”

Playing with him was an arcane math lesson; his ability to deduce the dominos you had drawn–based on which ones he had in his hand and based on the opportunities to play that you had passed up–was uncanny to other men and downright supernatural to me as a child. It was a magic trick that always amazed me and sent a stream of giggles up out of my nine year old’s throat. He’d pause before playing, eying all the right angled streets and Swastikas spelled out emergently by the domino trails. Then he’d say, “I know that you’ve got the double-six…” Looking down, seeing that I did, I had no chance of maintaining a Poker-face; I would instantly fly into happy exasperation. He always chuckled softly as he uttered these fortune-telling words.

Even though I spent most of the my time during the game arranging my dominos into little graveyards, I hope he enjoyed our games as I did.

Recent Dream

I dreamed that my ex and I moved into a yellow house in some suburb.

The house was similar to the one my parents built when I was 16. My dad and stepmom built the house in a different city, nearby, which required me to break up with my first long-term girlfriend. The family was in the process of moving when my dad and stepmom divorced. My dad, my brother and I only lived in the house briefly, during a time of chaos and sadness.

In the dream, my dog Star stole a Winnebego and drove off (seriously). Very annoyed that she would do this, I was following her in my car, trying to catch her and bring her back.

Out on the highway, I developed the impression that there was a threatening driver behind me. Looking back, I saw a black truck very close to my bumper, weaving and accelerating toward me. Occuring over the course of a series of snapshots as I looked into the mirror, the truck crashed somehow, still very close to my car. The black truck flipped into the air and started rolling, end over end with great violence. I sped up to get away from it and smoke filled the highway at my back.

A woman cop questioned me later, at some sort of diner, but I pretended not to know anything about the crash and got away without any trouble.