Snapple says: “The average human dream lasts only 2 to 3 seconds”

That is according to Snapple’s “Real Fact” #830. It worries me that they place quotation marks around real fact but not enough to ignore said facts. I don’t drink Snapple much anymore, not that I ever did as a die-hard Diet Coke addict for years, but I do always look under the caps at the “facts.” [I was also a fan of the various ways the Snapple logo was appropriated by others, most notably my friend Ian’s former clothing company (Stoopid) and the Grateful Dead, both using the Snapple design but with “Stoopid” and “Ripple” respectively in the recognizable script, e.g.: Ripple: Made from the best stuff on tour. I have always had an appreciative eye for that kind of thing.]

However, “Real Fact” #830 got me thinking. Only two to three seconds? Seriously? Come on now… That seems impossible. And guess what? It is not correct. Most dreams, according to the sources I could find, last between five and twenty minutes (it is further reported that people spend about six years dreaming in their lifetimes. I think this is an underestimation – though I could be considering daydreams. Or malingerers.) Also, it is believed that events in dreams happen in real time. I think this heightens the emotional freakery that can accompany them. The only way to fast forward is to wake up. besides, any movie aficionado knows that real-time is far more suspenseful than reconfigured chronology.

I certainly feel like I have contiguous dreams that last longer than two to three seconds.

My dreams lately have included a recurring location and several similar, if not identical, circumstances. I suppose we would call these motifs were my dreams worthy of literary analysis. The location of which I speak is indelibly imprinted in my mind. I  cannot say if I have been there before in reality, as with so many aspects of dreams it seems like some sort of composite image, but if I could draw I could render an exact image: I can see every detail. And as far as the circumstances, I have no idea what the significance might be, but it is a strange series of events. My cats are in there too, almost always. (Hate to consider what that might indicate.)

The location is a rocky beach/coast where a ferry docks, I am inevitably late for the ferry and having to hop/climb/run over the rocks. The path to the ‘beach’ is a series of switch backs that originates in a village-y sort of area where paths emerge from neatly kept alleys and patios. It is sort of Santorini-esque, but less… nice. I often find myself on the ferry dock and then it is sinking. I am trying to hold my things – whatever I am carrying – above my head, but through it all I am completely unfettered by concern. I wish I could describe it more effectively, and while I am sure there are myriad dismal interpretations of my sinking, I am far more interested in identifying the location. It is so clear in my mind I feel like I just KNOW I am going to arrive at this place someday and be like, “Holy shit! This is it!”

The circumstances have a similar construct in that water is almost always involved. Lately I have been diving – or going to dive – in places that are not necessarily safe, and again I am aware of, and unbothered by, the peril. The situation is generally explained very pragmatically and my attitude tends towards the, “Alright, so here we are.” Other scenarios involve a boat (small) on a river – similar to the Russian River at home in many ways, but more tropical. And generally I am endeavoring to make it to the beach to get the ferry, similar to how you take the longtail boats in Thailand to the bigger inter-island ferries. And yeah, often there is an element of the sinking ship. More recently there has been a lot of rain in the dreams, and in all the cases there is the very clear sensation that I am looking for something and the subsequent sensation that I have arrived at the place where I will find said thing, but I am still unclear as to what it is.

And nearly always, my cats figure in the dreams. Not just any cats, but always Norman and Matilda. They are rarely together in the dream, when one is around the other one is missing or something. But they always both pop up.

Of course, me being me, I have looked up what the “experts” have to say about the contents of my dreams. And, as with horoscopes, I can make any of it fit if I am in the mood. Some of it supposedly portends “very problem” events. Some, really not as bad. So I am left with little substantive meaning and a bunch of very, very, very clear images.

Maybe I should learn to draw.


About Amanda

I am repatriating expatriate trying to work it all out. Well, to work some of it out anyhow. I am writing here for sanity, focus and general over-sharing.
This entry was posted in Life, Perception, Philosophical Underpinnings and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Snapple says: “The average human dream lasts only 2 to 3 seconds”

  1. Car says:

    Wow those seem to me like cool dreams. I don’t think I ever had water or rain in my dreams thats because I live right by the water.

    • Amanda says:

      As do I – I commute to work via ferry and live on an island over looking the South China Sea… In fact I have always lived by water… so I don’t know…

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