So I’m sitting by myself in a corner of this dimly lit, old-timey New York bar, on a maroon leather bench seat leaning against the wall with a bar-height, round oak table and three empty barstools between me and a growing throng of couples and loners, drinkers and hustlers, and too many loud talkers.
In walks Bruce Springsteen with his three adult children. They scan the scene and catch a glimpse of me and my available table. I wave the group over. Fortunately and shockingly, none of the patrons recognize him.
Bruce plunks down on the bench, to my right, and the three siblings — introduced as Jessica, Evan and Sam — grab the barstools across and around the table.
We’re sipping beers and talking — about what I have absolutely no idea — because, after all, this is such a ridiculous dream to begin with. Gradually I realize I have nothing more to say, while the four of them clearly have plenty more to catch up on. I can’t help thinking if only my superfan wife Sharon was here. She’d be engaging enough for the both of us, reminiscing about the dozens of shows she’s been to, most recently on Broadway (exclaiming how getting those lottery tickets was the best moment of her life.)
Instead, to avoid further awkwardness and out of respect for this special family get-together, I prepare my exit. First, I suggest taking a group photo for Patty (and Sharon.) “Sure,” they agree, as Bruce leans over to me and sheepishly says, “I’m starving. Do you mind if we order some food? You get something too.”
And scene. I wake up. Asking, What the hell was that all about?
I try to fathom what sparked this fantastically weird dream. Immediately I recall a short TV news story from the night before showing proud parents Patty Scialfa and Bruce as Sam is sworn in as Jersey City firefighter. Who knows, maybe that celebration brought them to the bar and my subconscious?
Otherwise, on a grander scale, I suppose the sequence could be some sort of metaphor or premonition. As in, if I could become a better harmonica player, the E Street Band awaits. Or, maybe, I too should become a firefighter. Or, more obviously and simply, I need to work on my conversational skills.
Dreams are so weird …