Good morning, everybody.
I was in some place like a small cafeteria or eating area that was at the edge of a larger floor, like in some kind of school or administrative building. The floor had a wide staircase or escalator bank at the other end of it, leading upward. The floor I was on felt like the second floor. Off to my right was a door to something like a huge auditorium, even though I couldn't see it.
My co-worker KB was standing in front of me as I sat at a table. KB had been speaking with me about something. Now I was talking about one of my past jobs, and one of my old bosses, DO. We then got talking about how the housing market downturn had been predicted as early as November of 2005.
I got really excited, talking about one person who'd predicted this. I was trying to explain everything I knew. But I felt like KB was only half-listening to me or half-believing everything I was saying. I was trying to keep a focus on everything I was saying while contending with the overall atmosphere of distraction I was beginning to feel.
A group of ladies, apparently all KB's friends, came up to get KB. They took KB toward the auditorium. KB told me to come along. So I went.
We ended up in a place like a seating area before an airplane gate. KB and the ladies sat with their backs toward the window, at the last row of seats away from the window. They were all watching a TV that hung down from a lip of wall that curved all the way around the seating area in a crescent shape. For some reason I was laying curled up on the floor, facing the TV.
The TV was showing something about the history of the housing market. On the screen was a chart of something, maybe the homebuilders stock index or new housing starts. But it started somewhere in mid-2005, just perfect for demonstrating what I was talking about.
I started calling out to the ladies that if you looked, you could see how the call about November of 2005 being the top of the market was just a bit too early. The market, I showed, had gone down a bit, then bounced back up a bit, before finally plunging downward. But the ladies weren't really listening to me. They were all watching the TV.
Now the screen went from static to moving. The chart scrolled forward, moving along to show what had happened after the housing market had completely bottomed. There was apparently some sort of history the TV announcer was giving, about how there had been ups and downs. But the chart just basically kept looking flat.
The announcer may have mentioned that there had been another downturn in the market. Or he may have mentioned that there may have been an upturn in the market. The ladies listened sympathetically. But now the chart went even lower. The line of the chart now became a glowing red. It was like the line of the chart actually traveled below the axis of the chart. The red line divided into a crack, with silver-grey fading away from it. In the crack below the axis, computer-graphic houses and buildings appeared.
The announcer now spoke about people beginning to live underground. It may have been that this was actually the end times. Livfing underground may have been due to something like a nuclear attack. The chart sped along even still. But it finally reached a point, freezing, with words in the blank space of a chart, like words in an old arcade game, saying, "HOUSING AS THE END OF THE WORLD?"
But the chart was now apparently some movie. All I could see of the movie was an empty road, as if the camera had the view of a car traveling down it. One of the ladies, who was now apparently my friend, was telling me about the movie. It was some kind of cartoon-like, mystical movie. The central character was a woman who was visited in her head by spirits. The spirits all revealed themselves to the woman to different degrees.
The woman told me about one spirit that barely revealed itself at all, so that the audience hardly knew anything about it, all through the story. The movie was an adaptation of a book. I wondered what kind of forethought would need to go into writing a character that revealed very little of itself. I wondered how much more could be revealed -- on purpose, for the audience -- through implication, if the writing were planned out correctly.
The lady told me to stay and watch the rest of the movie. But I felt like I couldn't. I looked up. Parked right by my head was something like a flight attendant's cart. But it was all done up to look like some kind of beach bar, with shaggy, wooden planks, palm fronds, and so forth.
As I looked at the cart, I realized that the name of the book was Little Round House. I saw the cover of the book. It was lavender with purple dots, with a white shape in the center. There were two cartoon children facing each other. They looked like the Precious Moments children. They had their heads bowed, as if in prayer.
Something about the weirdly quaint attitude of this book's cover made me want to stay and watch the movie. I wanted to see how something that started out so normal could end up being as weird as to include the imagery on the front of the book. But I still felt like I needed to go. So I probably wasn't going to watch the movie.