Dangerous Señorita Dream

Last night I had a vivid dream which has stayed with me. These are the details.

I am in my friend’s apartment. The decor suggests that it is the early 1980s. It is dark inside and outside except for the three light bulbs above a long mirror posted onto the living room wall. The mirror looks like something from a backstage dressing room. On the base of the mirror is a shelf with makeup brushes, lipgloss, deodorant, and a used condom. I look at the mirror from an angle so that I do not see myself reflected in the glass. Instead, as my eyes become more adapted to the darkness, I see in the mirror reflection an illuminated French vaudeville poster from the 1890s. I also perceive just off to the side a wax palm tree in a basin full of make believe dirt. From what I can see the apartment resembles a low budget, direct to video, movie set more than an actual home. I sense that my friend is in the other room affixing his tie, but I do not see him.

I am seated alone at a rickety, wood table in a cheap, Mexican cantina. The discolored floor beams creak whenever someone walks across them. There is a gloomy cigarette haze that blankets over everything, and I sense that it would not dissipate even if all of the doors and windows to this place were opened at once. Hooked on the wall opposite me are several framed photographs of Pancho Villa. His oversized sombrero and bushy mustache are almost cartoonish. In each of the pictures he is looking straight into the camera while blowing the smoke off the muzzle of his pistol. The expression on his face is cocksure to the point of decadence. I half expect him to step out of those pictures and to walk among us suddenly as a “cock of the walk,” Mexican Hugh Hefner. There is also a poster on that wall: ¡Viva Nachos! in orange against a red backdrop with a centered, blue nacho just below. Apparently, beer and nachos are all that is served here. I look around at all the round, wood tables, and the diners are drinking Modelo Especial directly out of the bottle and baskets of salted, blue nachos. My friend is seated with his back to me at a rectangular table that juts out from the opposite wall. He is hunched forward like he is in close and confidential conversation with the other men at the table. All of the others at the table are identical to one another. They look and dress like the old movie gangster played by Marc Lawrence who is killed by Scaramanga at the beginning of “The Man with the Golden Gun.” They look over at my friend with contempt. I am worried for my friend, as I sense that he is in way over his head.

A señorita barmaid with big, red hair and long, painted nails walks up to my friend. She leans over and caresses the right side of his head so that his ear is nestled inside of her oversized bosom. With her red, tasseled dress that barely covers her ass, and a pair of sequined, high heels, she could be a cheap imitation of Charo. She shimmies her whole body, whispers something into my friend’s right ear, and laughs. Whatever she said has released some of the tension at the table, and the gangsters chuckle and seem a little more relaxed now with my friend. She walks back toward the bar, wiggling her big butt toward the gangsters, and blowing kisses back at them over her shoulder. They respond appreciably, and I realize then just how dangerous this señorita is. One moment she is puffing up my friend, and the next moment she is egging on the gangsters. Her loyalty flips like the tassel on her dress. She may be a lot of fun, but she is also bad news; and my friend and I are getting too old for that kind of bad news.

I am seated behind the steering wheel of my car in front of the Mexican cantina. I had intended to drive my friend home, but I watch helplessly as he is being forced into the backseat of a black, 1970s Thunderbird idling in front of me. The gangsters slide inside the front and back seats after my friend, so that he is now crunched on the center back seat in between them. My friend’s girlfriend, if that is what she really is, walks up to the open, rear, passenger seat, leans inside, and blows a kiss toward my friend. She laughs hysterically at something someone inside the car says, and then wiggles back into the cantina. The Thunderbird takes off down the city street, and I follow closely behind. At one point, another gangster who looks and dresses like Marc Lawrence from “The Man with the Golden Gun” is walking down the sidewalk on the righthand side. He sees the Thunderbird passing him, retrieves his pistol from his chest holster beneath his jacket, and playfully pulls on the trigger a few times. There are no bullets. As the Thunderbird revs forward across an intersection she blinks her lights in playful acknowledgment of his make believe assassination. The buildings ahead of us look like rickety, cardboard replicas of a 1930s New York City skyline. The road has narrowed, and a blueish snow spread out over the sidewalks and staircase railings on either side suggest that we are suffering through a particularly cold and relentless Winter. The full moon rises up from behind the buildings like something backstage pulled up by a rope. A fog machine off to the side pushes fog onto the downtown city set, and soon enough the moon above is a sick glow in the haze. More buildings pop up behind the existing ones in order to make the impression that we are driving deeper into a third dimensional world. Nevertheless, on its face this dark, urban world is much too cartoonish to allow for any suspension of disbelief. Still, I am frightened for my friend. The world around us may be a low budget movie set, but the movie gangsters seated close together in the Thunderbird seem real enough to me.

As I drive by a parking garage, I glance over to my right at the short driveway that leads into the garage. Idling side by side on the driveway are two race cars. The one to the left is a yellow, boxy, race car that is being disassembled. The one to the right is a red, sleek, Le Mans race car. I see that my Le Mans has been delivered finally. An unseen mechanic is taking parts from the yellow race car and installing them into mine. I smile, because I have been waiting for this prized vehicle to be delivered to me for a long time.

I am leaning against a counter in a backstage dressing room. The lights at each of the mirrored makeup stations have been turned on, so the brightness in here contrasts a lot with the snow encrusted darkness outside. Everywhere are rolling racks of vintage stage costumes, ornamented hats removed from hat boxes, red fox fur coats gathering dust on hooks, and posters featuring W.C. Fields and Mae West. In each of those vintage posters Fields is wearing a little schoolboy uniform and is juggling apples or books. Mae West is an Old West saloon prostitute luring Fields away from his juggling act for “some grownup fun.” Standing in front of me in this backstage dressing room is a beautiful, slender blond with playful curls in her hair. She is completely naked except for a sheer white jacket that is unbuttoned and is hanging loosely on the back of her shoulders. Any moment now and that jacket is going to fall to the back of her ankles. We are talking with one another like a pair of old friends. I find her to be beautiful and sexually desirable, but it is clear that in her eyes it is as if I am her gay brother. I am telling her how my Le Mans finally arrived. I need to store it somewhere to keep it safe. The woman has no particular advice for me, so I step through the open doorway and into an adjoining dressing room. In there, I see another naked woman. This one has dark, black hair tied into a tight bun that makes her look like a medieval princess. She is seated on the counter and coloring her toenails with a nailbrush. She does not have any better advice for me except to say that I should hire them to be my attorneys if and when someone finagles the Le Mans away from me. The two women apparently are attorneys, not actresses, and I am one of their better clients (meaning the ones who actually pay their invoices) from way back. I step back into the first dressing room, and I comment that my friend is in way over his head with a red hot señorita. The blond shrugs her shoulders as if to mutter, “What else is new?” When she does so she lets her sheer white jacket drop to the floor. I bend to pick it up for her, but she indicates to me to let it alone.

Published by Michael Sean Erickson

I write, act, and produce films in Los Angeles. Everything else is conjecture.

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