Transcript of 28th Session between Charles Balis, M.D. and Mr. Thomas Darden, Monday, July 20, 1998 at 2:00 pm.

Dr. Balis: Tom?
Mr. Darden: Hi.
Dr. Balis: Come on in. I almost didn't recognize you.
Mr. Darden: Hmm.
Dr. Balis: What's the occasion?
Mr. Darden: Occasion? What do you mean?
Dr. Balis: Well, this the first time I've seen you without your glasses.
Mr. Darden: I finally went out and got a contact lens prescription.
Dr. Balis: And the goatee?
Mr. Darden: It was always a pain in the ass trimming the damn thing, so I shaved it off.
Dr. Balis: I must say you look much younger.
Mr. Darden: I don't know if I should take that as a compliment.
Dr. Balis: It was meant as one, which is not to say that you looked terribly old with the glasses and goatee, but you did look older than your age.
Mr. Darden: Yeah. You haven't said anything about my hair, yet. I thought that one would be the most obvious.
Dr. Balis: Your hair?
Mr. Darden: I colored it. I bought one of those women's coloring kits that's supposed to match my hair color. I could have bought the men's coloring kits, but there wasn't that much of a selection. I figure hair is hair, right? So, no more gray to worry about, at least for now.
Dr. Balis: To tell you the truth, I had never really noticed you had any gray hair.
Mr. Darden: Believe me, it was all over the place.
Dr. Balis: So those are a lot of changes in your physical appearance. Is there a particular reason for them?
Mr. Darden: I just wanted to feel better about myself, better about my age. I turn twenty-seven next month. And when it happens, I don't want to look like I'm in my thirties. Ever since I hit twenty-five, I've been having problems dealing with how quickly time seems to be passing.
Dr. Balis: Twenty-seven is still fairly young, Tom. I'm in my thirties myself--actually my late thirties--and I don't consider that too terribly old, though at times, my back disagrees with me in the morning.
Mr. Darden: It's not so much the age as it is the lack of memorable experiences I've accumulated in that timeframe. I overhear conversations from co-workers, talking about their wonderful trips, and the great parties they've been to, and every detail of their adventurous sex lives. The more they talk, the more empty and insignificant I feel about myself and my life. When I was in a relationship, I had a purpose. Life had meaning. I meant something to someone. Sharon and I went places, we enjoyed each other's company, and we fucked so much that rabbits got jealous. I want that back. I feel like I've been forgotten, like I'm a Cabbage Patch doll that was hot on the market for a while and then placed back on the shelf and never looked at again. Maybe if I try to become a Beanie-Baby, I'd have better luck.
Dr. Balis: They do seem to be popular collectibles right now, although I personally don't understand it.
Mr. Darden: I don't get it either. There was the hula-hoop, the pet rock, the Cabbage Patch dolls, the Mutant Ninja Turtles, Tickle-Me-Elmo, and now these stupid Beanie Babies. What are they good for? At least a hacky-sack has a purpose. I bet a Beanie Baby would make a nice hacky-sack to kick around. Maybe I can market a line of dolls that will be under everyone's Christmas tree and Menorah this year. Tom Darden's "Kiss a Loser" doll. They'd all have a likeness of me. You'd pull a string and hear me whine: "I have no friends. I haven't been laid in two whole years. My life sucks. I'm out of Prozac!"
Dr. Balis: There you go, selling yourself short again.
Mr. Darden: I'm not selling myself short. That's just the way it's been most of my life.
Dr. Balis: It's only because it's what you allow yourself to see. How have you been since you started the medication? Any side effects?
Mr. Darden: I was miserable the first week. I felt extremely tired all day for five days. Eventually, I started getting some energy back, though my appetite still isn't at its normal level. I've been eating really light meals. Any more than that and I start to get drowsy and a little nauseous.
Dr. Balis: The nausea will likely pass as the drug has time to build up in your system.
Mr. Darden: And I've been having really intense dreams lately.
Dr. Balis: Oh? In what way are they intense?
Mr. Darden: I don't know. They just seem to be more vivid and frequent. Usually, I can only recall fragments of dreams I've had, but lately, the images are so clear that I can remember long spans of them at a time. For example, the one I had a couple nights ago is still fresh in my brain.
Dr. Balis: What happened in that dream?
Mr. Darden: Well, it started off with me standing in my apartment, painting a wall. The paint was a really bright, fluorescent, and truly horrid shade of green. There was a section of the wall above me that was just out of my reach. I jumped a couple times trying to get to it with the roller in one hand, but I was still missing the section by inches. Then I started to hear this incessant giggling coming from behind me, as if someone found my attempts amusing.
Dr. Balis: Do you know who it was?
Mr. Darden: I turned around and realized that it was my cat, only she wasn't really a cat at all. She seemed to be a grotesque, polymorphed creature--half cat and half woman. The lower half of her body was completely that of a human with a black mini-skirt and shapely legs wrapped tightly in black fishnet stockings. The top half of her body was almost completely feline with fur-covered arms protruding out of a snugly-fit camisole. Her hands were slightly clawed, and her head was exactly like that of my cat, except that it was human's size. As she snickered at me, she crossed one leg over the other and slightly bounced the calf up and down, showing off her stiletto high-heels.
Dr. Balis: Hmm. Sounds unusual for a cat.
Mr. Darden: Yeah. This was definitely not your average pussy. Anyway, I was immediately startled as she began speaking in a raspy, whisper-like voice--something a snake might sound like if it could talk. "Why deny yourself the right to fly?" she asked. I looked at her with a puzzled expression, then turned to look back at the unpainted section of the wall. As I stared at it, it seemed to draw closer to me until I could easily reach it with my paint roller. I realized that I had somehow floated toward the ceiling. I could fly! Once I completed painting that section, the wall began to resonate with a soft humming drone, and the paint pulsated with an eerie glow. Then the wall suddenly disappeared, revealing downtown San Francisco outside. "You are finally free," my cat whispered, absently licking the fur on her wrist. I stepped out onto what appeared to be a ledge and, with some encouraging words from my cat, I leapt off the building. At first, I began to fall to the ground, but after a few moments of concentration, I was flying once again. I never felt more happy than at that moment. I truly had all the sensations of flight in that dream. I could feel the wind pushing my hair back. I could feel myself become weightless. People below became tiny, indiscernible dots. There I was gliding over buildings, swooping underneath the Golden Gate Bridge, and looping back around toward Golden Gate Park. And then I was over the SII building campus.
Dr. Balis: What was going through your mind as you were flying?
Mr. Darden: Well, once I got over the initial feelings of euphoria, I started thinking about Rachel. I imagined how she'd react if she were to see me flying. I soon became convinced that if I could show her this skill, she'd instantly realize how special and necessary I was to her. So I shifted course toward Rachel's apartment building. Once I landed, I ran excitedly inside and hopped on the first available elevator.
Dr. Balis: You didn't fly up the elevator shaft?
Mr. Darden: Uh, no. When I got to her floor, I ran to her front door and banged on it several times. Rachel opened the door, dressed in only her bra and panties. Six men I've never seen before suddenly rushed out from behind her, all of them in different stages of undress. They smiled at me as they passed, disappearing down the hallway. I looked back at Rachel and noticed that she had droplets of semen staining her face and stomach.
Dr. Balis: And you felt...?
Mr. Darden: I am...was dumbfounded. It was as if I was going through an emotional overload. I could feel hate, jealousy, sadness, anger, betrayal, and anguish all at once. She continued to stare at me as if nothing were out of the ordinary. "Well?" she asked, waiting for me to speak. "I know how to fly," I muttered, my eyes focused on the floor. Rachel brightened, took my hand in hers, and lead me back to the elevator. When we both got on the elevator, she hit a button, and we were whisked to the roof of the building. As we stepped out, she said, "Prove it to me." But when I stepped onto the ledge, I was terrified. I no longer believed that I had the ability to fly; it's not possible for a human being to be like a bird. I thought about getting back on the elevator, but it was too late. I felt Rachel's hand push hard against my back, and I tumbled off the building end over end, the street rushing up to greet me. When I crashed to the ground defeated, I began to cry. As I was laying there on my back, I began to feel hands rubbing me gently over my pants. At first, I thought it was just bystanders checking to see if I was still alive, but then I realized I was being felt up. I started to relax. The hands slowly unzipped my fly and reached for my dick. Pretty soon, I became quite aroused as I felt someone performing fellatio on me. I began fantasizing about Rachel--how much I want to run my hands through her hair and draw her close to me; how I want to feel her breasts and put my mouth over her nipples. And then I realized I was about to come. When I lifted my head to look down at her, my cat was staring back at me from my crotch, smiling. That's when I suddenly woke up.
Dr. Balis: Hmm.
Mr. Darden: It was not a very happy ending, unless you're into sex with polymorphed house pets.
Dr. Balis: I suppose not.
Mr. Darden: So what do you think about the dream? Is it Prozac's side-effect or do you think it means something?
Dr. Balis: I think it means you shouldn't sleep with your cat so often.
Mr. Darden: I'm serious.
Dr. Balis: As far as dream interpretation goes, I believe that it's what you feel about the dream that's important. I'm not a Jungian in that respect. But generally speaking, the dream seems to reflect a great deal of insecurity, jealousy, and frustration you've expressed with both your social inadequacies and your love life. However, flying dreams are usually a particularly healthy kind of dream. Usually, people find them more pleasurable even than sex dreams.We can pick the dream apart in more detail during our next session, if you'd like.
Mr. Darden: Is it that time already?
Dr. Balis: I'm afraid so.
Mr. Darden: All right. I guess I'll see you in a couple weeks, then.
Dr. Balis: Very good. Take care, Tom.
Mr. Darden: Later.
Arrow, Straight, Left, Earlier Arrow, Straight, Right, Later

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