Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Gadfly In...His Dreams

The Gadfly In Your His Dreams

By Mike McCarville
Dreams are not usually the stuff of commentary on this blogsite, but since It's my site and that's what I choose today, bear with me.

Back in the day, when I burned up air miles consulting candidates and corporations, I often would dream about a problem, and the dream would suggest an approach to solving the problem. I kept this to myself, thinking that the reputation of a consultant who relied on dreams as the source(s) of his suggestions likely is one with a shrinking list of clients.

Often, I'd dismiss what I dreamed about. In 1979 the tiny town of Broken Arrow just outside Tulsa decided that to grow, it needed support for a sales tax. Cogman & Associates won the consulting contract and my longtime friend Don Cogman assigned me to handle the account. In one of the many meetings I had in Broken Arrow, a prominent businessman with a lot riding on passage of the measure made a remark that had me sitting straight up in my chair. "We don't need a huge budget (for the campaign) because I dreamed it is going to pass by a huge margin" was his remark as I remember it. This guy went on, telling us his dreams had never let him down.

After the meeting, I headed for the usual best source of opinion on the meeting; a stall in the men's room.

There were a few laughs about the dream comment; one guy said he'd heard about the power of dreams before but he didn't want to take any chances on passage of the sales tax, so the group needed to raise all the money it could to fund the campaign for it.

We raised and spent the amount first contemplated and the issue passed with overwhelming support in a record voter turnout. That dreamer's dream was spot on.

So why is it that today, 31 years later, I find myself writing about that event?

Answer: Since my open heart surgery 18 days ago and the resultant stress over complications being handled with more and more drugs, I find myself awakening to sort through what must have been multiple dreams. Among the most vidid of the dreams has me screaming that we've got to fix public schools or the future is bleak, that every problem we face today is man-made and that anyone who spends 55 years sucking on cigarettes despite the damage they do (as I have) is an idiot.

In many of my dreams, I'm lost and can't find myself to a safe place. (Boy, the shrinks will have a great time with this.) Sometimes I'm in a room with multiple doors and I can't find the door that opens. And then there's the "capper" dream, the one I recall vividly, in which God tells me I have much yet to do with my life and I can see dead friends giving me a thumbs up in the background. I awake with optimism.

Perhaps this dream is the one that follows near-death.

Perhaps it's just the sub- or un-conscious brain operating on multiple drugs.

Perhaps it is nothing.

And perhaps, just perhaps, the dreams suggest that despite all the closed doors and can't-find-my-way-back-home episodes, solutions remain for every "problem" I have.

I can't wait to see what next chapter my brain dreams up.


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