Dream of: 19 February 2000 "Executioner"

I was practicing my new job – professional executioner. In my hands was the long axe, almost three meters tall, which I would use to practice my trade. I admired the slick curved steel blade attached to the wooden handle. The blade seemed sharp enough, ready to be put to use. But I was unsure of how well I would be able to handle such a long axe. I needed practice. I would need to raise the long axe high over my head, and bring it down with terrific force, if I were going to successfully sever heads. Unfortunately, I was inside a room whose ceiling wasn't high enough to allow me to raise the axe high enough. I needed to go out to the actual platform where the executions would take place.

I walked outside, where I immediately found the platform, and I mounted the steps. The place was like a boxing ring, only set up for executions. Here I could practice as much as I wanted. I needed to be sure I could cut off a head with one stroke. It would be terrible to have to hack away at a head two or three times before being able to completely cut off the head. I raised the axe over my head and brought it down several times, trying to get the hang of it.

I thought of what it would be like when the person was brought in to be executed, and the scene I imagined was straight out of the 1939 movie, The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Crowds of wild people were screaming all around the ring. The executioner, with his black mask, stepped up. I reflected that I would not wear a mask. I would not care who knew that I was the executioner. I wasn't ashamed of who I was or what I did.

In my imagination, it was the hunchback who was going to be executed. I could clearly see the hunchback's face, exactly as it had appeared in the movie, as he lay his head down on the block. But I was aware that I was thinking about a movie, and I was trying to remember who had played the role of the hunchback in the 1939 version. I convinced myself that Boris Karloff had played the role. I was also convinced that it was extremely important that I know this fact.

When I snapped out of my reverie and looked around me, I realized the floor of the platform was in need of some repair, and that I should try to fix it. The floor, constructed of old wood, was coming apart in places. Many of the boards were loose, and nails were sticking up all over the place. I knelt down on my hands and knees and began pulling out the nails. I wanted to get the place in as good a shape as possible.

I felt quite satisfied with my new profession. The job seemed to be the culmination of a long, natural progression. It wasn't something I had planned, but now that it was here, I readily accepted it.

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