January 24, 1995 (Back in Oakland)

by jkatejohnston

Dear Max,

This morning just before waking up, I dreamed that I was getting dressed to watch Teresa in a race. I tried on a whole bunch of blue sweaters, rejected them all, and ended up in a clear plastic shirt.  Then I was in a grandstand overlooking a bay. The water came right up to the edge of the grandstand and even up into the lower seats. We were waiting for the runners to race by, and there were killer whales swimming slowly up and down the front rows.  What does it all mean, Max? 

I woke up when Teresa called me. “Time to pop,” she said when I picked up the phone.


Just finished Freud’s Autobiography which is very short.  I was disappointed that he didn’t include more stories about his life. But he wrote something about that near the end.

And here I may be allowed to break off these autobiographical notes. The public has no claim to learn any more of my personal affairs–of my struggles, my disappointments and my successes. I have in any case been more open and frank in some of my writings (such as The Interpretaton of Dreams and The Psychopathology of Everyday Life) than people usually are who describe their lives for their contemporaries or for posterity.  I have had small thanks for it and from my experience I cannot recommend anyone to follow my example (Freud, An Autobiographical Study, Norton, 83-84.)

Why are people so mean about not getting exactly what they expect?  Because that must be it, don’t you think?  How dare this upstart talk about his own life in a scientific paper?  Well, now I know which of Freud’s books I want to read–the ones with the stories.  It’s odd that scientific papers aren’t written as stories.  Observation and discovery are experiences, right?  Darwin wrote narrative. Oliver Sacks does.  Well, I don’t know what I’m talking about.