‘It may be a commodity to me, but something else to you’

No one wants to read other people’s dreams. But, here’s the thing, I seldom remember any dreams I have. They may as well not even take place. And when I do remember them, or are aware of them, they only rattle around in my brain for just a minute or two.

Sometimes you try to hang onto them, pull more strands together, tie in details and tidbits to make a more coherent whole. Then the mental quicksand kicks in. The more you pull, the salient points move farther apart. And what was context when your eyes were first trying to focus is just a yellowish blur later in the day.

Or is that just me?

I woke up this morning from a dream where my grandmother was correcting me on the finer points of commodities and commodification. She was using bolts of cloth as her widget. She was explaining the error in something I’d said.

She was a rural homemaker, my grandmother, a textile worker. She quoted a first century Syrian poet in her high school yearbook. That’s one of those things I only learned about her later in her life and, now, I wish I had asked her more about it.

She was attuned to world events, always read the paper, watched the news twice a day. My grandmother watched the A-block on one channel and the B-block on another. I talk to students about broad consumption and critical media analysis, and that’s basically what my grandmother did. She knew which station was best at this and that, and she found a system that worked for her, out there on the gravel road. She knew some stuff.

As for the dream, I don’t know how old or educated (I only have a minor in economics) I was, but I spent a few moments looking through some research this morning to see how accurate our “chat” was.

Turns out — having glanced at some of the sociological anthropological work of Peter Ekeh, Bruce Kapferer and Igor Kopytoff — that, in the dream, my grandmother was perhaps trying to make a point about the commoditization of goods.

The title of this post is basically what she told me in the dream. It’s a pretty incredible paraphrase of Kopytoff who, to my recollection, I haven’t read before.

Also, it appears that she was right, and dream-me was mistaken.

What a real delight some dreams can be.

What a delight!

Regretfully, I forgot to do this yesterday, but here’s the updated cycling chart through February. I know you felt like something was missing here, too. But, after thinking about it most of the evening, did you realize, when you were setting out your things for the next day, that what was missing was an obscenely oversized graphic?

This is what happens when you set up site rules for photographs, so you can deliver nice images in a consistent style, but didn’t think you might one day run a simple Excel chart as filler, too.

Anyway, that purple line is where I am on the year in terms of mileage. It’s humble, to be sure. Nevertheless it’s a high, steady pace for me. And I added to it a little this morning. I woke up early, within that amount of time that going back to sleep and getting anything out of it seemed futile.

Eleven miles doesn’t seem like anything, but I figured I could ride a half hour this morning, or try to ride this evening.

I decided to do both, but one of the cats decided I needed to provide pets, instead. Good thing I got up this morning, then.

Speaking of stats, I haven’t looked at the site data in a bit. Last month I had my 5 millionth visitor.

Five million! That seems like a lot for a humble personal site.

I don’t know why you all come here. I know it isn’t for the occasional dream or the too-frequent talk of my bike rides, but thank you for the visits. (It’s the cats. I know. They know it, too. More from them on Monday.)

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