Sunday, April 19, 2015
Our Name: Host or Guest? Part Two
Clay Blog Ch 5 Post 1
Both of us guys flopped down fully dressed and passed out. Last I knew, Gal was gathering things around the kitchen and all went dark. My sleep was chased around all night by vague feelings of doom. By morning those feelings captured my sleep and produced a child, a bad dream.
I dreamed of being twelve and at school. I was cornered in the boy’s restroom by two groups of guys, native and whites. Each group yelled at the other while pushing me between them.
“His skin is brown so he belongs with you guys from the reservation,” said the oldest of the non-native kids.
“Nah, no way. He’s more Chimookmon, yah, white like you guys. Let him hang out with your bunch cause we don’t want him with us neither,” said the meanest of the Chippewa boys.
A dozen guys from two cultures spoke as one when they yelled “Half Breed” and beat me near to unconsciousness. An adult voice barked out orders and the guys scattered. Looking through swelling eyelids, I saw the principle coming toward me with a scrawny Nishnob boy in tow. He looked exactly like an unwrinkled Clay Silver Otter, shorter and with all his teeth, and I vomited.
I woke from the dream when my stomach decided it didn’t know the difference between imagination and reality. Was it imagination? It seemed real. An answer would wait while I choked back puking until letting it go in the toilet.
My retching woke Clay who came and checked on me.
“You okay Ain’t It? What, bad frybread?” he asked.
My arm was hurting a little and I wondered about a heart attack but dismissed it.
“Dam bro, I don’t know. Woke up with it. Nothing that can’t be fixed with that caffeinated mud you make, wait, unless Gal can get up and make us some.”
Clay, making the mistake of looking to the toilet before I could flush, began gagging.
“AAah, yuck, no Migizi, she deserted us last night. You’re stuck with mine or make it yourself.”
With us dressed and coffee made, a few cups had already headed for our kidneys as we got back to our chat about Clay’s name.
“Yah, that was it Ain’t It, all there was to my name. Gotta tell ya though, I wonder.”
“Wonder what, Clay?”
“Does a name live us or do we live the name? And what about your name? I’ve asked you before, several times, but you always say you don’t know? Old age makes certain kinds of memory better. Maybe you can remember now.”
My bud made some interesting points about the influence of names and age. I couldn’t help but consider the relevance to the dream I had involving an event I couldn’t remember. I assumed it was a mental construct, one created to help my brain process the previous day’s events. Still, why did it make me sick?
I looked for Chong but figured he caught a ride with Gal. Drumming the fingers of my right hand on the table I summoned Toby, well, tried to.
Giving me the look, Clay shook his head and said, “He won’t come for you cause he knows your stalling on me Ain’t It. Answer my question.”
“Okay, okay. I still don’t know how I got my name and don’t have any memory about it so let it go Clay.”
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