I’ve been thinking about unicorns so much lately that they’ve begun infiltrating my dreams.
I dream about unicorns prancing around my bedroom singing the “Frozen II” soundtrack, unicorns rudely interrupting me with knock-knock jokes while I’m trying to concentrate on a job interview that’s going disastrously, and unicorns scamming me by calling my cell phone from a local number and pretending they are stuck in a foreign prison and they need me to buy $1,000 of Best Buy gift cards to secure their release.
Even though I’m dreaming about unicorns, I am definitely not the one in my household who is most in love with unicorns. That title is held by my 5-year-old daughter. She has unicorns on the brain and has half jokingly asked if we can keep a unicorn as a pet in the backyard.
Maybe my unicorn nightmares are a result of my underlying terror that somehow this scenario might come to fruition. That I’d be so loathe to disappoint my dear daughter that I’d acquiesce to her requests and — against all odds — I’d end up applying to the town zoning board for permission to stable no more than two — okay, three — unicorns on my property.
After all, she loves unicorns so much. She has unicorns on her sneakers. She has unicorns on her pants. She has several different unicorn shirts, and another pair of unicorn pants that I’d forgotten about. She has a winter hat with a horn on top like a unicorn, and she has unicorns all over her winter jacket. Her favorite books are about unicorns, her second-favorite books are about Curious George, but her third-favorite books are about flying magical horses.
She draws pictures of unicorns, she sings about unicorns at dinner time, and every so often she asks me if we can have a unicorn for a pet.
Then she asks, what will we feed our unicorn? What will we name it? Where will it sleep, and what will it do for fun?
It will shovel the driveway for fun, I tell her, and in the summer it can mow the lawn. Surely the grass will grow steadily, as that darned unicorn will be adding fresh natural fertilizer to the yard on a regular basis (Yeah, but it will smell like candy canes and roses, exclaims my daughter).
What does a unicorn eat, I wonder. Sure, I bet it likes apples and carrots. But being a unicorn, it probably also likes cotton candy and banana splits and cinnamon bread with a dollop of honey on top.
We could teach the unicorn some tricks, perhaps. After all, what’s the good of having a unicorn if you can’t show it off a little bit? Surely we could hire someone out there to teach our unicorn how to fetch the newspaper, roll over, or sneeze rainbow glitter out its nostrils on command.
I have to stop myself before I end up looking for unicorn obedience schools online. This is how I end up letting those creatures get inside my head and into my dreams.
On the other hand, I suppose it could be worse; my nightmares would be so much less magical if it were crocodiles prancing around my bedroom and singing instead of a bunch of jolly unicorns.