Sunday, December 11, 2016

Athletic Dreams

Now that I'm rarely awakened by an alarm clock, I tend to remember more of my dreams. I notice a few peculiarities. In my dreams I can run and jump well. If I'm under the basket with the ball, I can jump up and dunk in slow motion. I can skate well, even on waxed floors if I'm wearing socks. I rarely step down stairs, I just grab a railing and spin from landing to landing. I'm also a hell of a skier, much better than I ever was in real life.

So far so good. But I'm hopeless in games that involve throwing, catching, or hitting a ball. If I try to rebound, something I was once slightly good at, I jump wrong, or the ball caroms off my hands or body. Attempts to catch any ball, or to kick a soccer ball, or hit a tennis ball fail miserably. I even whiff on underhanded volleyball serves. I'm always out of position, swing wildly and misjudge every trajectory. Other tennis players usually can't even hit the ball toward me.

I wonder what this says about which brain functions are active during dreaming sleep. I wonder if something like trajectory tracking shuts down. I've noticed that light switches usually don't work in dreams and counting my fingers usually doesn't work either.