Ed Darrin: author, cannery owner, fabled speech writer. All known records of Ed's most famous speech, I Have This Dream, dissappeared for a few years. This is it's triumphant return to public circles. - CL
Gentlemen, ladies, and all in attendance: I have this dream.
I have this one dream about once a month, and I'm in this house that's totally deserted except for me, and the whole house is full of sand, so that you can't even go into the basement because it's all sand, and the first floor is about knee-deep in sand. It's a light tan sand and really dry, like a desert. I'm not sure if the house is in a desert because I never see outside. But I remember there being windows and everything, like a normal house, it's just that I never look.
But anyway, in this dream I'm trapped in this house and none of the doors open. And the house is all sand inside.
And then there's this extremely poisonous snake that lives in the sand. I rarely see it, but I know it's in the house and that it'll bite me and kill me if I rest. There is no way to survive its bite. Sometimes I can see the sand shifting and I know the snake is under there. It gets around by burrowing through the sand. But mostly I just run around the house totally freaked out. Sometimes one of my friends is in the house with me and we run around from room to room screaming and gasping like kids in some stupid horror movie. And in the back of my head, I realize how weird and outlandish the whole situation is, but it never stops me from running all over the house and struggling to stay high up on the sand. I forgot to say how hard it is to run in the sand; I get winded really fast during the dream and then it gets really scary because I'm afraid the snake will catch up with me.
But back to what I was saying, I keep on running even though I know how dumb it is. But it's not lucid dreaming; it's not like I realize that I'm in a dream. That's like a totally different thing. This is sort of just a defeatist attitude. Which is weird, I guess, 'cause I'm not like that at all in real life.
But I guess it's a dream, so anything goes. It's all about repressed feelings and stuff like that.
I suppose that's all I have to say; thanks for listening to me, and if any of you have any questions, I can answer them now.
Q: That was pretty cool.
Q: So does the snake ever catch you?
A: Sometimes I get so tired that I can't run anymore, and then the snake catches me. It jumps out of the sand most of the time. I almost always wake up at that point. One time I remember the snake actually bit me in the foot from underneath; I felt it and everything. Then I woke up all startled and I had to rub my foot to make sure it wasn't real. Hey, I never thought about it, but I must have been barefoot. I never noticed that before.
Q: What does the snake look like?
A: Hmm, I don't know if I can remember. Uh-it's pretty big, and I think it's black with some red markings, but that's just a total guess.
Q: Could you say a little more about the repressed feelings you think the dream represents?
A: Whew, that's tough. I mean, I don't have any huge problems; my childhood was pretty normal. I get along with my family. Maybe it's my current life that's bothering me. But I like my job; I get to travel around and give these talks all the time, so that's not it. I guess whatever feelings they are, they're still repressed. Sorry.
Well, they're motioning to me, so I guess that's it for questions. Thanks again. I hope you enjoyed everything. I feel better about traveling knowing that my stuff is in good hands.
(speech delivered June 19, 1981 in San Antonio, Texas for the annual assembly of American Air Cargo Workers)