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The Snub Dance (Volume 114, October 30, 2012 - January 28, 2013)

Updated: Apr 10, 2021

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Cats degraded my quality of sleep all night. In the morning, though, I finally dreamed.

I dreamed that my old boss, Jim R, was alive, and desperate. He’d committed a crime, or crimes, and wanted me to harbor him. Ellis wasn’t home. I tried to keep Jim out but he put his fist through the screen door and forced his way in. We looked at each other. I just didn’t know if he was harmful or not.

“Jim,” I said, looking searchingly into his eyes, “it would be so, so, so, so sad if you killed me.”

The dream segued into a party where a famous little Creole woman named “Ivory Magnolias” was holding court. The dream mythology was that she was now an old woman but in her youth she had sparked a national dance craze by snubbing a northerner, an important man, by doing a stylized dance in front of him (and to him) while he sat in a chair. The “Snub Dance” started with her raising her left leg to the side and tapping her ankle with her left hand, like a flapper’s move. The pivotal move in the dance was to stroke the side of the seated man’s nose and then flick her hand away. She did this with her left hand.

I wish I’d written down this dream this morning. It was so vivid and detailed. I told Ellis the fragments I was able to retain. He had me demonstrate the dance.

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