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2003-03-08 | 2:16 p.m.

I am going to see a neurologist on Monday, so this morning I dreamed that I had become some version of the Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat.

First I revisited a furniture store I hadn’t been to in months and found a whole stash of our overdue library books under a bed there. We had things in the drawers of the nightstand, too. I gathered everything up sheepishly.

At home, it was as if I had awoken from a nap and found that weeks had passed. I looked in the mirror and was shocked to discover that I now had a shag haircut and bleached-blonde hair. I got mad and started accusing Felony of bleaching my hair while I slept. She seemed baffled. “No, you had it done at the hair salon!” she insisted. “Don’t you remember, it took four separate processes to get your hair blonde?”

Then I went outside and found Duff lying in the backyard, almost entirely submerged in a mud puddle, except for his eyes, nose, and mouth. “What are you doing out here?” I shrieked. “You kicked me out,” he said.

I could remember doing no such thing. But then I ran into my sister and my Mom, and they said I had kicked them out, too.

As time wore on, it became apparent that whatever I thought I was doing was different from what I was actually doing at least half the time. I learned to ask for verbal confirmation whenever I did something, to make sure I had done it right and not nonsensically. But it wasn’t just me—there were lots of other people who had the same problem, including Mariah Carey. She asked me if her outfit was okay and I said yes. I knew it wasn’t as glamorous as she would have worn previously, but at least she had all the pieces of clothing on the correct body parts. At least, I thought she did. The way this mutant neurological disorder worked, I might see “high heels” when what she was really wearing was a cereal box or kittens. I sidled over to an acquaintance and asked, “Is she wearing a pink sweater, teal miniskirt, high-heel shoes, and crew socks?” They said yes, she was.

Phew.

An hour after I woke up, I felt like I still had the condition. To have such a thing actually happen would mean being upset for life.

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